Features, Wrap Ups & Hauls

June 2017 Wrap-Up + Book Haul


Oh hey!  Remember me?!

As per usual I grossly underestimated the amount of time I would have to blog during a particularly hectic time.  If you remember from my last wrap-up, I had house guests last week, and this week I am on vacation up at my parent’s house on Lake Erie.  When will I learn to prepare and schedule posts ahead of time?!  Let’s be honest, it probably will never happen.

Anyways! This wrap-up is a little late, but let’s see what I accomplished in June…


*Book titles link to Goodreads

What I read this month


5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words: great concept with potential to bring important issues to light, but execution was off; needed more development with secondary characters; Hannah should have been portrayed differently – would have had better effect

» I Found You by Lisa Jewell


5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words: converging storylines well done; steady paced; realistic & flawed characters; believable

» Commonwealth by Ann Patchett


5-Star Rating System

*3.5 Stars

Feelings in a few words: blended family dynamics; existential; felt jumbled at times due to time hopping; hard to get into

» The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

TheOneandOnlyIvan5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words: Gorilla POV well done; animal cruelty/abuse – hard to read but important to address; quick read; inspired by true story; heartbreaking & heartwarming

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» The Last Girl by Joe Hart


5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words:  liked the dystopian concept; slow start, but pacing gets better; not a fan of the “girl hate” for no reason; cliché at times; enjoyable read, but didn’t knock my socks off

*Full review to come

» The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett


5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words:  enchanting; subtle “magic”; wonderful character growth; friendship; recommend to nature & animal lovers; wanted a little more from the ending

» North of Here by Laurel Saville


Feelings in a few words: portrayal of loss & grief; darker than anticipated; cult-like group well done; not a fan of the convenient ending in regards to the romance; decent read

» Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery


5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words:  better than the second book; loved Anne’s college escapades; Patty’s Place just as beloved as Green Gables; new friend Phil welcome addition; the loss of an old friend; Gilbert!

» The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill


5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words:  magic; good plot line; swap monster, tiny dragon & crow are loveable side-kicks and comedic relief; some aspects needed more development; climax felt rushed; random, but it works; would make a good movie

» The Good Girl by Mary Kubica


5-Star Rating System

Feelings in a few words: favorite Kubica book to date; thought I had figured out all the twists – wrong! well played Kubica, well played; Stockholm Syndrom-ish; could have done without the romance that involved the detective

» Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Homegoing5-Star Rating System

*4.5 stars

Feelings in a few words: I’ve never read a book where each chapter is a new character’s perspective – had my doubts whether this would work – Gyasi nails it; so many things to think about & discuss – cannot wait for my own book club discussion; the ending felt a tad off – not sure why



Challenge Updates

Screenshot 2017-07-02 21.54.45

» I am currently 22 books ahead of schedule on my goal to read 90 books this year.  Could this be the year I break 100 books read?  I do hope so 🙂



Book Reviews:

KidsCornerMGbookreviews2017Kids’ Corner: Mini Middle Grade Book Reviews (June 2017)


Book Review: Miller’s Valley by Anna Quindlen


Book Review: In the Light of What We See by Sarah Painter


Kids’ Corner: #BabyLove: My Toddler Life by Corine Dehghanpisheh

Other Posts:


May 2017 Wrap-Up + Book Haul


June 2017 TBR


Book Blogger Recs: Bloggers to Follow for YA Readers (Part 1)


Book Event: Lisa Jewell’s “I Found You” Book Tour


Book Haul


» I Found You by Lisa Jewell

» Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue

» The Unseen World by Liz Moore


» Lie Still by Julia Heaberlin

» Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson

» The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly


» Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller

» Every Last Lie by Mary Kubica



Which books did you read in June?

Have you read any of the books I read or hauled this past month?  If so, what did you think?

Did you buy any books in June?  If so, which ones?

Comment below and let me know 🙂

25 thoughts on “June 2017 Wrap-Up + Book Haul”

  1. I too need to plan more in advance – Wimbledon tennis championships are on over in the UK for the next fortnight so I’m going to be glued to the tv! Might have to write and watch at the same time if I can :p

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great wrap up! And twenty two books ahead of schedule? That’s amazing! I really hope you can get to 100 😀
    I’m glad you enjoyed The Secret Garden! It’s one of my favorite children’s books. But I agree, the ending could have been so much more…
    Awesome post and thanks for the recs! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I set my reading goal to 90 after reading 82 books this past year, BUT I discovered audiobooks during the middle of last year, so I am able to read so many more books this way… I think it’s safe to say I’ll hit my goal.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m behind on my schedule. I may not make my goal this year. ☹️
    On the upside, I’m having my blogoversary this month so that’s good! I see you have a lot of books read – The Girl Who Drank The Moon looks so good!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Boo! I hope you are still able to hit your goal. Ooooooo happy blogiversary!!! One year right? Such a huge milestone!

      I really liked The Girl Who Drank the Moon! Such a lovely little middle grade book. I know I would have loved it as a child 🙂


  4. I was beginning to wonder where you were! Have a good time on your vacation! I’m glad you enjoyed the secret garden. I did too, when I was a child. Unfortunately, now I can’t help but notice that it is a bit racist against Indians, so I’m put off by it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I had a wonderful time 🙂

      Yes there were definitely some moments in The Secret Garden that made me cringe… I know these books were written in different times, but it still doesn’t make it any easier to swallow.


  5. I love homegoings style, I think it would be daunting if someone picked it up without knowing it was a new POV each chapter but I really can’t wait to read it myself, glad you liked it! Hope you’re having an awesome Summer it is freezing right now so I am just going to huddle around the heater and pretend I’m on holiday like you xD 67 books is amazing! I’m up to 64 so far and plan on smashing past 100 so theres no doubt that you’ll do it to. Great wrap up Amanda ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Homegoing was definitely unlike anything I had ever read before, but in a good way. I can’t wait for you to get the chance to pick it up!

      Ahhhh I forgot that it is winter in Australia right now! Yuck lol BUT your cold season is fairly short right?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I guess? I have no concept of how different it is from anywhere else XD It doesn’t snow tho and our average temp lately is around 10-12c so I might just be being a sook!


  6. That’s awesome that you’re so far ahead of schedule! You’ll break 100 for sure at that pace. Amazing. I’m right on target for my goal AT THE MOMENT, but I don’t know, I may have to read some graphic novels to make it by the end of the year, ha ha!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow!! I have no idea how you find time for all these things, Amanda! You read a TON of books, wrote a TON of posts, and you acquired soooo many great looking books. It seems like June was a crazy month for you, for sure. Congrats on being ahead of schedule– at this pace you’ll defintely beat 100 books. I know you can do it. 😀

    It looks like your reading was fairly constant this month. No 5 star books, but no 1 or 2 star books either. Do you ever find it challenging to rate such diverse books back to back? For example, it must have been really different to read The Girl Who Drank the Moon followed by The Good Girl. Keep up the great work!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awww Jackie you are my favorite lol Good for my ego you are 🙂

      I struggle with star ratings in general, but don’t necessarily think that reading such a wide variety makes it easier or harder. I actually don’t hand out too many 5 star ratings… I’ve often wondered if I rate books too harshly? OR maybe I am just hard to please?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Pft, I don’t think you rate books too harshly. I find that most of my reviews fall into the 3-4 star range, and I’m comfortable with that personally. It’s really interesting, I’ve noticed lately that my passions and reading preferences have been changing. I look at books I rated highly in the past and current Jackie would definitely rate them lower. It’s an interesting dichotomy.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Whew! I’m glad I’m not the only one. I see everyone handing out 5-star ratings like hotcakes and it makes me nervous I’m too harsh…. or that I’m not reading the right books lol My reading tastes DEFINITELY have changed and evolved over this last year especially, but I find it super exciting! I am getting more into fantasy & science fiction…. rekindled my love for MG…. I am happy with where I’m at right now.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. That’s all which matters– that you are happy with where you are right now. I also love watching my tastes change over time. It’s really obvious when I review series books, but even with stand alone novels I can see that I am trending more towards YA/MG and Classic novels. Who knows what I’ll be into next year at this time?! So exciting.


      1. That is awesome! It was not me that mentioned that but I did love the whole series. I had read the first 3 growing up but the last 5 were new to me. Rilla of Ingleside focused very little on Anne but it certainly shared how difficult it must have been to be those left home during the Great War.

        Liked by 1 person

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