A Much Overdue Update ~ #JNGReads A WHOLE LOT!!!

Oh my word and a half, it has been wayyy too long since I posted a book review here on the blog!

There’s no reason for this at all because I have been reading voraciously and have actually finished over 40 books this year so far, which is pretty epic, if I do say so myself.

I just haven’t gotten around to posting the reviews that I uploaded on Goodreads here because they seemed too short and insubstantial to warrant an entire post. But then, paradoxically, that means I’m not posting reviews at all, which is just plain wrong. Sooo, what I think I’m going to do moving forward is round up a bunch of book reviews on Fridays, for all the books I’ve read in the preceding week. That way, I can keep you all updated and stay on top of things myself, and if there is a book that I’ve particularly enjoyed and want to speak more in-depth about, I can post a longer, one-off review for it.

Without further ado, here is a looong overdue update on the books I have finished recently…

Thoughtless by S.C. Stephens

Does Kiera have any redeeming qualities? Short answer: No. Long answer: Nooope!

It was hard to get into this romance when I couldn’t figure out why anyone would love the main character in the first place.

❥❥ (out of 5)

Vicious Depths by Madeline Stanford

❥❥❥ (out of 5)

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

I survived. 

What a freaking ride. I have like 10 more grey hairs now than I did when I started this massive novel. 

❥❥❥❥ (out of 5)

This book is heavier than my 8-month old son.
Trust me, it was not easy to hold them both!

Beach Read by Emily Henry

This book wasn’t at all what I expected…and yet I ended up loving it for that. 

The cover will deceive you into thinking this is a cheerful, fluffy read…it is anything but. It hits hard, tackling subjects like cancer, infidelity, death and abuse, and the characters are so much more than typical romance clichés. 

I am very close to my father, so I particularly felt touched by the relationship between January and her dad, and her struggles with the realization that even a beloved parent can only ever also be a human. 

At first, I struggled to feel the sizzle between January and Gus, but by the end of this book, I was all in and enthralled by their witty and quirky banter. 

To say this book is a simple beach read would sorely undermine it…it is an excellent read, let’s leave it at that.

❥❥❥❥❥ (out of 5)

Lucifer, Book 1

Not entirely sure I know what’s going on fully, but this seems brilliant.

❥❥❥❥❥ (out of 5)

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

Hmm… This was pretty good. Exciting, a page turner, fast-paced. Although, I have to say that the ending wasn’t as shocking as I expected given all the hype. Still definitely binge-worthy though!

❥❥❥ (out of 5)

Big Summer by Jennifer Weiner

I didn’t really like this one, I hate to say. 

It felt disjointed and rushed to me, and I ultimately couldn’t figure out what it wanted to be. 

I think this book suffers from an identity crisis, torn between commentary on body positivity and the dangers of social media and being a murder mystery. The fact that Daphne was a plus-size Instagram influencer felt pointless throughout the second half of the novel, and her constant dwelling on her physical appearance once the mystery element got started seemed inappropriate and unnecessary. I struggled to feel connected to or like any of the characters because it all just felt too rushed and like Weiner was after gasps and shock-value more than creating vivid and memorable characters. Daphne could’ve been far more poignant of a character if the twist of the book didn’t exist at all and she was simply allowed to tell the story of her relationship with a toxic best friend and her struggles to accept who she is in a social media-driven world. In the end, the twist just felt like a gimmick more than anything, a way to get on those “Hot Summer Read” lists without much real effort. 

As a sidenote, one of my pet peeves in novels is when there are tons of spelling and grammatical errors. I get it, though…even editors are human and can miss things. BUT how did it get missed that Weiner sometimes calls Daphne’s babysitting charge (why was this aspect of Daphne’s life even mentioned when it led nowhere, I wonder) “Izzie” and other times spells her name “Izzy”?! This, I cannot look past!

❥❥ (out of 5)

In Pieces by Danielle Pearl

Wow wow wow!!!

Not only is this book steamy and the perfect hot summer read, it also features one of the most accurate depictions of anxiety I’ve ever read. I was not expecting that, but I truly appreciated it!

Highly recommend this one to romance lovers! You will not be disappointed!!!

❥❥❥❥❥ (out of 5)

Such A Fun Age by Kiley Reid

❥❥❥❥ (out of 5)

Thunder On The Right by Mary Stewart

I feel kind of meh towards this. It was an okay mystery and was very atmospheric and descriptive, and it took me back to my days of reading Nancy Drew novels as a child…but it wasn’t amazing. I much prefer Stewart’s novel Nine Coaches Waiting and would recommend that over this one.

❥❥❥ (out of 5)

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

This is an absolutely beautiful book in every regard, from the words it is written with to the images it paints. An utter masterpiece, full of moments and descriptions that are truly magical and that I will not soon forget!

❥❥❥❥❥ (out of 5)

Thanks so much for reading! xox

JNG

Girl with a Green Heart

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