June has been a bit of a non-month for things on the blog. Sometimes we need a bit of a break, and with work being busy, I’ve not had the mental energy to think up even vaguely thoughtful reviews. I have read some stuff, I’ll leave some brief impressions below, and you never know, there might even be proper reviews appearing soon.

Foxgloves in the New Forest

In non-book news, the garden has started to produce fruit and veg. I made blueberry muffins at the weekend from blueberries I grew myself! We’ve also had potatoes, broad beans, pak choi, courgettes, radish and lettuce so far this year. Oh and about 4 strawberries, but what they lacked in numbers were made up for in taste.

I also discovered a few new corners of the New Forest and went on a work outing to a local vineyard, which was lovely. They even produce red wine there which is pretty unusual for England, as most the wine is sparkling due to less ripe grapes. I’m very tempted to get a grape vine for my own garden now.

Baby grapes!


Also read:

Three Things About Elsie by Joanna Cannon
ATY: 30. A book featuring an elderly character

I thought up-lit was meant to be uplifting?! I found this tale very sad, thinking about how we become forgotten or dismissed when we get old and are bundled up into a care home, with little independence. Florence is an unreliable narrator as she tries to find out what Gabriel Price is really up to. I figured out Elsie quite early on but I would definitely read more of Joanna’s books.

Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman + Jay Kristoff
ATY: 14. A book with a title, subtitle or cover relating to an astronomical term
+ ATY Summer Challenge

A fun romp through space, I thoroughly enjoy anything this pair write together. More please!

An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green
Popsugar: 39. A book revolving around a puzzle or game
+ ATY Summer Challenge

I was pleasantly surprised by this, it’s much more about fame than about the aliens. Very apt if you want a peek into the life of a YouTube star, I can imagine a lot of this is from personal experience.

Field Notes on Love by Jennifer E. Smith
Popsugar: 44. Read a book during the season it is set in
+ ATY Summer Challenge

I find Jennifer’s books a bit hit and miss, but I enjoyed Windfall and wanted something light. This one felt a bit lacking, I wanted a bit more detail on the trip.

Superior by Angela Saini
Popsugar: 40. Your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR Reading challenge (non-fiction)
+ ATY Summer Challenge

Angela Saini is such a good journalist, she makes sure she is never one-sided in her research even though you could forgive her for not speaking to far-right scientists. I found some parts more interesting than others, there’s a lot of plain racism in some cases. I found the medicine parts the most eye-opening.

Exile by S.M. Wilson
Popsugar: 27. A book featuring an extinct or imaginary creature
+ ATY Summer Challenge

More dinosaurs and survival, this is so much fun just as long as you don’t think too hard.

The Binding by Bridget Collins
ATY: 12. A book about reading, books or an author/writer

Not what I was expecting (historical fiction, maybe, I mostly bought it for its looks), it’s actually a fantasy set in a world where bad memories can be bound in books. I took me an age to get into it but once part two kicked in, I was hooked. So nearly a five star read.

American War by Omar El Akkad
ATY Rejects: 4 books, one for each of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: War
+ ATY Summer Challenge

You can tell this is written by a war correspondent, sadly nothing that happens in this alternate USA is anything new but instead the horrors of war play out across a familiar landscape. I didn’t really connect with the main character but that didn’t really matter.

The Paper & Hearts Society by Lucy Powrie
ATY Rejects: Related to a deck of playing cards
+ ATY Summer Challenge

The debut from UKYA blogger Lucy Powrie is adorable. It has lovely grounded characters, the best book club ever and also covers bullying and how it can make you reluctant to make new friends.

Blogged about…

Top Ten: Most Anticipated
On My Radar: July