Wrapping Up June

So. This is late. I know. But I've spent far too much time and written far too much on this to just scrap it, so we're just going to stop talking about exactly how long ago this should have gone up, and then hopefully no-one will notice.

Act natural, 'kay?


First off, I'm just going to apologise for the fact I have done exactly no reviews of Goodreads for any of these books. I literally only just remembered to actually log that I'd read them. So ... let's hope my memory holds out, huh?

Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton 
I was so, so excited for this book. I mean, there was no way I couldn't have been - the hype was absolutely astronomical, as I'm sure you'll be aware if you haven't been living under a rock for the last century. And the first scene was amazing. And I was so blooming glad to finally read a fantasy world which wasn't generically based in Western Europe.

But then, chapter by chapter, it got less and less amazing. As Amani got more in touch with her ... er ... mysterious side (that's a terrible adjective to use but I honestly can't think of any other which doesn't spoil the heck out of the midpoint of the book), she sharpshooted (sharpshot? shot sharply?) less and less. It made me sad. She honestly just seemed less badass.

That said, she was still pretty darn badass.

Spellslinger by Sebastian de Castell ☆☆
So, there were great things in this book. Great great things. But you know what I was saying about being sick of generically Western European fantasy world? This one was supposed to be based on parts of Egyptian culture, but other than the names ... eh, I didn't really see it. Don't get me wrong, the idea itself is incredible, and again the first scene was absolutely fricking incredible (plus great characters and moral questionability and all that cool shabang) but it wasn't my favourite book this month.

One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus 
OH MY BLOODY WORD this book was incredible and brilliant and GAH!

I mean, there's murder. In a school. Being solved by a bunch of high schoolers who you think are labels; only they're not. They're people. And they're awesome and GOSHDAMMIT THEY'RE SOLVING A MURDER BECAUSE THEY'RE ALL SUSPECTS.

The fact that I'm incoherent only means that it's better.

Show Stopper by Hayley Barker 
This is honestly one of the most important books I've read this year and I want to recommend it to absolutely everyone currently living on the face of this earth. The world is a scary place right now - to be frank the endless divisions between people are driving me insane - and Show Stopper was absolutely unashamed about showing that in all its terrifying truth. Along with a healthy dose of compassion and hope.

And luuuurve. In fact, I'm pretty sure the romance was the one element that was out of balance - it was in no way graphic, but ... I don't know, maybe it slightly took away the importance of platonic love towards the end?

Read this one anyway. Because I could be very wrong.

The War on Women: And The Brave Ones Who Fight Back by Sue Lloyd Roberts ★
This book ... wow. It's one of the best introductions to modern-day feminism - and the issues it's facing worldwide - that I've ever read and I honestly think that it has a lot of power to open eyes. There are parts which I guess you could consider controversial, and since it contains such a personal view on many issues I feel like I have to do more research ... but I'm really glad I read this because otherwise I would never have known to do that research.

Also, I think Sue Lloyd Roberts might be my new hero. I really wish I'd known about her work when she was alive.


First off, I believe I must apologise for the tiny amount of blogging I've ended up doing this month. I wish I could say that I've had exams or something else that makes up a good excuse, but honestly it's just a combination of it being the end of the Summer Term (so all my music commitments and representing-the-school gigs have gone up a notch or two) and it being the end of the Summer Term (so my traitorous brain has decided it would rather switch off and watch YouTube videos than do literally anything that vaguely resembles work).

Although - if I'm going to be even more honest - it does that all the time anyway. 

I did, however, do a guest post at the lovely Alyssa's blog a few weeks ago (although it seems like absolutely forever now. How time flies when you're procrastinating) as part of her Local Book Nook series. It's an awesome project and Alyssa still needs more contributors, so go ahead and check it out!

(Thank you so much for having me, Alyssa. I had a slightly geeky amount of fun writing that post.)

Anyway, here are some other posts that I have enjoyed this last month. I have been ghosting out on the blogging world for a bit lately ... but I have been reading things! And these are the things I have loved.

How to Feel More Included in the Blogosphere by Amber @ The Mile Long Bookshelf
Oh, my days, how I wish this post had existed when I was a baby blogger. How I wish that, when I'd published my first post expecting everyone to come say hi immediately, I'd had this to turn to. Because it would have made me feel so much better! I would have had strategies to use and online places to go and meet people, rather than just thinking it was all my fault and nobody liked me. I worked all this stuff out in time, of course, but it was a stressful few months.

And, honestly, since I've not posted for a while and therefore put myself in a kind of mini-exile ... it's nice for the current me to have these tips available too.

Meet My New Kitten by Ely @ Tea and Titles
I don't know about you, but this month's been a busy one and I definitely needed a bit more cute kitty cat in my life when I stumbled across this one.

Because CAT. Cat = relaxation. And I don't care how full the internet is with kittens, moggies and other form of feline - it can always squeeze in one more.


The Disappearances by Emily Bain Murphy
This is not my usual kind of book. Magical realism is often just too fairy-story for me? Or maybe I just can't deal with the melding of fantasy and reality because of my teeny tiny common sense brain? Anyway, I almost definitely wouldn't be picking it up if it hadn't been chosen by my online book club. The girls that run Book Box Club (which you should totally check out, by the way, because it's WONDERFUL #notspon) haven't given me something I didn't like yet, so fingers crossed!

The List by Sioban Vivian
So this book seems ... ambitious, let's put it that way. Eight POVs? Most of whom don't even know each other, so their days are full of completely different things? It sounds like a recipe for a hot head-hopping mess.

But the premise sounds incredibly interesting, so I'm willing to give it a try.



Girlhood by Cat Clarke
I can talk all I like about wanting to read this book because I've read one or two from the same author before, back in my hazy pre-internet days, and loved them. I can say that, although I'm not especially a Zoella fan, I'm sort of intrigued by the whole book club thing and wanted to give a few of this year's picks a go.

Honestly ... I am a transparently manipulated person and the copy they had in the bookshop was signed.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt
This one comes highly recommended by my mother. I obviously have no choice but to love it.
In the comments: What have you guys been reading recently? Anything you think I might enjoy? And can you think of ANYTHING that's ever been later than this wrap-up?
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  1. I admit I was quite partial towards Ely's blog post about her new cat, too. But he's such a sweetheart and he looks very cuddly.

    Anyway, HELLO! I'm happy to see you in my feed again. :D I loved One of Us Is Lying as well, and Rebel of the Sands was pretty good too!

    1. HELLO! It's great to be back in your feed again :-) One of Us is Lying was probably one of my best reads of the year - just. so thrilling. much tension - and Rebel of the Sands was a masterclass in original fantasy worlds, however much I didn't agree with the hype.

      Thanks for the comment, Inge!

  2. Ooh, I hadn't heard of One of Us is Lying before you reviewed it, and now I HAVE to read it. It's been a while since I've read a good mystery with unreliable narrators!

    1. Oh, and it is such an amazing mystery. With such unreliable narrators, too. I hope you love it.

  3. I keep forgetting how young you all are, and then you're like, 'at school...' and I'm like... WHAT?! You're officially too talented to still be in school. It's not fair dammit I feel like a grandma!!!! ;)

    (That was a compliment btw, in case it wasn't clear!) :)

    1. You're not a grandma, Cee! I promise! And thank you so much for your lovely lovely compliment.


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