Well now. It's a good thing I read some books in the first half of July. I haven't picked up a book yet in August. I'm not quite sure what that means.
Only You by Denise Grover Swank A
This was hopelessly adorable. I always say that I normally steer clear of these types of books but DGS just creates the best fictional characters. Her books are the exception to every rule I ever thought I had about chick-lit. There's a depth and a narrative that I don't really see in other books. The characters are incredibly likable and relatable. It's the best kind of fiction.
While, sure, these could be turned into Lifetime movies if given the right producer, they're just really good stories. This was the first in a 3-book series called The Bachelor Brotherhood. It's a spinoff of The Wedding Pact series, which was ridiculously good.
I'm not looking forward to waiting an entire year for another one.
After Math by Denise Grover Swank C
I downloaded this because I'm of the thought that DGS can do no wrong. After Math, I knew, was a book about college students so I was hesitant. But I jumped into the audio. The first chapter was so bad that I almost returned it. Sweet Valley books have more depth to them than this, I thought. But I'd just returned a book a few days before because it was awful (I'm in a book-choosing rut), so that wasn't an option. I figured at the very least I would have a bad review to post. Bad reviews are the interesting ones, right?
Then it got better.
And I realized she had written a book in a way that presented the important details in the middle of the book, instead of at the beginning.
So the beginning was bad, the middle was good, and the end was okay.
I wouldn't discourage you from reading it but I'd tell you to go for another one of her series first so you get hooked on her style. This narrator was bad too. (audio)
After I Do by Taylor Jenkins Reid C-/D+
See full review here. I didn't have a problem with the book itself or the writing. Something about the premise or the idea of what was happening in the book, as well as annoying characters, didn't sit well with me. I liked the periphery/background characters much better than I liked the main ones.
Redesigned by Denise Grover Swank C+
This is kind of a sequel to After Math but it's more like a spin-off than a sequel. It was better than After Math by miles because it had more of a backstory to it and details were presented in a typical fashion. I enjoyed it. It got kind 50-Shades-of-Gray-ish at a few points and it was hopelessly predictable, but it was a good enough story.
Business as Usual by Denise Grover Swank C
And then this was the spinoff to Redesigned. It was good enough. It had even more of a backstory and I liked the characters. Predictable, sure, but not bad reading. I liked Ben's character. Lexi was okay.
A Man Between Sunset and Wisteria by Ryan Christopher B-
This is an adventure story and I think was written to really showcase the setting. It takes place in the Caribbean and Florida Keys so there's something about it that really drew me in. I've only been to the Caribbean twice but there's something I just enjoy about it. It's a hard book to describe, so I'll break my own rule and post a synopsis.
It was like Matthew McConaughey meets alcoholism meets secrets meets treasure-hunting. It was like the best parts of Sahara (which I own), with some good characterization, taking place in the Caribbean. This book is 99 cents on iTunes, so if you want an adventure story that's a smooth read (I breezed through half of it while waiting in a parking lot), I'd go for it. (ebook)
This was a chick-lit heavy month. You can see that, when I'm in a book rut (and I have been for awhile I think), I just stick to what I know.
And I didn't finish:
The Girl in the Ice by Robert Bryndza
I had this in my Audible wish list for months because I like the idea of getting pulled into a detective story. The first hour didn't catch my attention at all, so I just returned it. Oh well.
Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay
I started this one night and it followed the show so closely that I just lost interest. They're good books, but I just wasn't feeling it.
Linking up with Jana and Steph!