August Book Wrap Up: The Month of Short Reads

My mind was elsewhere this month, and though I wanted to read, I only got in one and a half audiobooks and one longer chapter book. But that’s alright! No shame there. When the mind wants shorter books, there’s plenty of gold mines to discover. And it was actually fun to get a taste of more genres this month than usual.

What was your favorite read this month?

1. ‘Spin’ by Lamar Giles

Rating: 4/5 Stars

This YA murder mystery was a super fun audiobook to listen to. The story was a little predictable, but I liked the unique characters. Exploring the lives of teenage musicians is something I don’t read about very often.

2. ‘Elixir’ by Hilary Duff

Rating: 3/5 Stars

I’m not sure how much of this book was ghostwritten, but I do know that it was as addicting as most romances. The concept, while familiar, was interesting enough to keep me reading. However, the romance was a little iffy—a little too much gaslighting for my taste. Will I read the second one? Of course I will. Who do you think I am?

3. ‘The Deep’ by Rivers Solomon

Rating: 4/5 Stars

One of the most realistic mermaid stories I’ve ever read. Though short, this book works more as a contemplation and meditation through allegory than a stream-line story. Just a heads up for those who are interested. I thoroughly enjoyed the rhythm of the book, even if it was a little hard to follow sometimes.

4. ‘Crooked Kingdom’ by Leigh Bardugo

Rating: 4/5 Stars

The more this book sits with me, the more I do think I liked it. Just as with the first one, I wanted something MORE. I don’t know what, but I feel like every time I read this author, I feel like I’m missing something. The characters are amazing, and I love the way their backstories are woven into the present-time plots. But I definitely didn’t have the emotional impact that everyone else seems to have at the ending. Which is very unlike me. But for a story? So air-tight and beautifully written.

5. ‘The Other Ones’ by Jean Thesman

Rating: 4/5 Stars

I’ve never seen or heard of this book, besides it somehow finding its way onto my shelf. It’s a little magical realism witchy tale, and it was delightful. The adults were a little negligent, and the voices of the teenagers a little too young, but I really enjoyed this short read.

6. ‘Binti’ by Nnedi Okorafor

Rating: 5/5 Stars

This Sci-Fi story blew me away with its colorful imagery and creative ideas. I will forever think this genre is one of the hardest to write and is one of the most subjective. But I think this book should be studied in schools—there’s just something so academically intentional about every word choice and plot point. Yeah, some if it may seem a little beyond belief, but it’s Sci-Fi, so I don’t really mind that aspect.

7. ‘The Bronze Pen’ by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

Rating: 2/5 Stars

In this middle grade fantasy, a young girl with a sick father is gifted a magical pen to make what she writes come true—well half of the time it comes true. I remember reading The Egypt Game by this author when I was younger. And I think I read this one too. But reading it now, it was a little rough. The plot is non-existent; the characters are pretty flat. I found myself pushing just to finish it, not really enjoying the fantastical aspects at all. But hey—maybe someone younger would still really enjoy it.

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