It’s book day! It’s also nearly halfway through August. WHAT THE HECK. I know we all say the months fly by (except January 2018, remember that one?) but daaang. This summer has been a quick one!

I just got home from another work trip- this time to Indianapolis. We end up there about twice a year and always come home dead tired. I’m not really complaining, though. I like what I do & who I do it with so these trips are fun in their own way πŸ™‚

Enough chit-chat. On to the books.

Thanks for hosting this lovely Show Us Your Books link up, Jana & Steph! (Go visit them!)

The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel
In 1961 NASA sent the first American into space (just after Russia beat us to it). In 1969 we were the first to put men on the moon. The wives never walked on the moon but without them their husbands’ dreams would’ve been just that.Β 
I know it’s borderline blasphemous to say this, but I recommend watching the TV mini-series before reading this book. There are lots of wives (and astronauts) to keep track of and the show will help you put a face/personality with the wife; at least for the Mercury 7 wives. I’m not typically one for space history, but I really enjoyed this book. It doesn’t have very good reviews on GR (mainly because of the “sassy” writing style) but I didn’t have a problem with it. I enjoyed learning about the marriages and women who made it possible for these men to travel to space. Trust me, without the wives behind them, the men would’ve failed miserably and never seen the moon.
Should you read it? If your interest is now piqued, then yes. Watch the mini-series first, though!

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Caught between two worlds, Starr Carter has suddenly lost another best friend to neighborhood violence- only this time it’s the fault of the supposed “good guys.” By speaking out she’s sure to make an enemy out of nearly everyone… in both of her worlds.Β 
This book was incredible. I’m from a very small, white Midwestern town. Certain conversations made my skin prickle and my face blush. I would agree with everyone out there and recommend this book to all people. It’s heartbreaking and funny and infuriating and suspenseful and filled with SO MUCH. I’m so glad I read it and annoyed with myself that I hadn’t read it sooner. I really can’t think of much else to say- you just need to read it.
Should you read it? YES.

The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata
After two years of suffering as the be-all, do-all assistant to professional football player and major asshole Aiden Graves, Vanessa has finally quit to peruse her own artistic dreams. But soon after her grand exit Aiden shows up begging her to come back- and this time, he promises, things will be different.
The more I thought about this book the more I convinced myself to push it into the 4 star range… It was cute and flirty, and parts of it have really stuck with me. The reason for the hesitant score is the repetitive nature. I liked Vanessa but her internal dialogue was usually about the same dilemma, over and over. I think the book could’ve been 100 pages less if that had been skimmed down or removed. Aiden sounded incredibly attractive. I loved that Vanessa was a an average, down-to-Earth woman. I think I’m starting to love the romance genre. So far they’ve been mostly the same formula, but you kind of know what you’re getting when it comes to this type of book. It’s a fluffy way to mix up my reading habits. I’m interested to picked up another Zapata (and R.S. Grey, too).
Should you read it? I know it’s one of Kristen‘s favorites and I really enjoyed it, so if romance is a genre you like then yes, you should.

Nine Women, One Dress by Jane L. Rosen
It’s funny how one dress can affect so many different people and events…
There was nothing wrong with this book, but it didn’t have much pizzazz. All the stories were woven together like the movie Valentine’s Day or New Years Eve. It was adorable and cutesy, but there wasn’t much development and everything was tied up in a nice, neat bow by the final page. I loved all the stories surrounding the sales people at Bloomingdale’s. I also loved the emotional importance of findingΒ the dress for any occasion and how it makes a woman feel. It was sweet and accurate- I’m not one for fashion, but the right dress makes you feel incredible! Overall, just a cute little beach read.
Should you read it?Β Eh. Only if you’re in need of something super light.

Erin’s 9.0 Challenge started last month. Some people read all ten books in as many days (or less!). I am not those people. Here’s my progress:

|5 points| Freebie: One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake
|10 points| Starts with the letter N: Nine Women, One Dress by Jane L. Rosen
|10 points| Has a mostly orange color: A Tyranny of Petticoats by various authors
|15 points| A book with an unlikable character: The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
|20 points| From 100 books PBS calls “The Great American Read”HP & the Prisoner of Azkaban (illustrated version) by J.K. Rowling
|20 points| Related to water in the title: On A Cold Dark Sea by Elizabeth Blackwell
|25 points| Owned/TBR the longest (GoodReads): The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel
|30 points| An emotion word in the title: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
|30 points| Each word in the title begins with the same letter: After Alice by Gregory Maguire
|35 points| A book featuring a character who shares your profession or similar one (i.e. does the same kind of thing as you do day to day): The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata

I have 110 points out of 200.

I’m currently working on the Prisoner of Azkaban. (I like to savor my HP reads.) I have On A Cold Dark Sea on hold at the library, After Alice is sitting on our coffee table, and I’m waiting for One Dark Throne to go on sale (Kindle version- fingers crossed!).

What did you read this month?

Life According to Steph

50 thoughts on “What I Read…

  1. For me, this year went fast until the end of June then July was soooo slow. But now August is flying by again.

    I still need to read The Hate U Give. I must be the last person left in the world who hasn’t now!


    1. Ugh. This summer is slowly killing me, but it still definitely feels like it’s flying by! I hope fall feels slow and relaxing…
      There are a few more comments down below that say the same thing about THUG but I definitely agree that you need to read it!


  2. i remember that astronaut wife tv show and i think i watched the whole thing and then read reviews on the book and you’re not the only one who thinks that so i skipped it.
    YAY WINNIPEG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    1. Yeah… if someone were to ask me which I recommend more it’s DEFINITELY the mini series. Skipping the book would be fine. I feel terrible saying that but… *shrug*
      Man… now I can’t see football players in the same way. HA.


  3. The Hate U Give is in my top-10 favorite/important reads, and I can’t wait for the movie. I originally had On a Cold Dark Sea as more water pick for Erin’s Challenge too, it sounds really good! Curious to hear your thoughts on After Alice too; I read Wicked but this one sounds even better.


    1. I am so glad that I finally read T.H.U.G.
      I have been waiting for On a Cold Dark Sea for 2 months from the library. And I STILL don’t have it!
      Man… I couldn’t get through Wicked. I’ve tried three times. After Alice is kind of a struggle, too, but I love AiW so I’m pushing through. I’m starting to think Maguire might not be for me…


    1. That’s amazing. That book definitely deserves to be on the NYT best seller list! I read lots of fantasy and historical fiction but I’m so glad I left my comfort zone to read it!


  4. Girl you’re doing awesome with Erin’s Challenge! It always amazes me how fast other people finish her challenge, but I just know that I’ll be lucky if you get all 10 books read in the first 4 months! I need to read The Wall of Winnipeg and Me! I have to be in the mood for romance, but I’m kind of feeling it right now.


    1. Thanks! I’ve kind of hit a lull right now but I have two started at least. I am blown AWAY by people that consume 10 books in the first 10 days. SHEESH! Winnipeg is cute and spicy. I liked it!


    1. I won’t lie… the mini series is just as good and could totally be watched instead of reading the book. But if the synopsis appeals to you then you should absolutely read it!!


  5. I still need to read the Hate U Give. I feel terrible that it’s taken me so long but I’ve been trying to chose some lighter reads because I need them. I really loved One Dress but I read right after the 2016 election and needed something that reminded me that love trumps all. And it did the trick.


    1. The Hate U Give is so damn powerful. And while it is heavy and deals with real stuff, there are light moments, too. It was an awesome balance. I’m curious to see how they do the movie…
      One Dress would’ve been perfect for that time in our lives! Or on a warm beach πŸ™‚ It was cute, just not what I needed.


  6. Nine Women One Dress sounds like a grown up Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants πŸ˜‰
    I loved The Astronauts Wives Club when it was on TV so I may need to pick up the book


  7. Still unsure if I’ll finish Astronaut Wive’s Club. Honestly if the chapters were shorter I’d be fine… but dang. It’s a bit of a slog for me right now. I do want to watch the mini series though! I have had Wall of Winnipeg for a while but have been saving it. I am excited to read it but feel like I’ll like Kulti best of her books, we’ll see. I enjoyed From Lukov With Love (enemies to lovers) by Zapata and The Beau and The Belle by Grey. I didn’t love Grey’s newest book. 😦 I was pretty bummed about it. I loved THUG. It’s so so important. That movie is going to be so hard to watch when it comes out this fall (i think). Way to go on Erin’s challenge… I’m struggling with all of my current reads. Bleh. XO – Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things


    1. I wouldn’t have made it all the way through if I hadn’t seen the mini series. It helped me connect with the wives and keep them straight. I haven’t read Kulti yet but I think I bought it for my Kindle! I still need to read The Beau and the Belle! I have her new one on my Kindle, though.
      Oh man… the movie for THUG is going to be rough for me. I’m so excited for it to come out, though. SO important. I’m in a lull with the challenge but trying to push through πŸ˜‰ Good luck to you!!


  8. My library doesn’t have Wall of WInnapeg and it makes me so angry!!! I loved Hate U Give, definitely one everyone should read no matter what genre they are in to.


  9. I keep seeing this reading challenge on the blogs and it sounds great! Might have to give it a try.
    Nine women one dress sounds like a lovely book – I’m in the mood for something lighthearted πŸ™‚


  10. I loved Wall of Winnipeg – it is still my favourite of all of her books and I think there are only a couple that I haven’t read yet. Lukov was really good too and Kulti πŸ™‚
    THUG was an incredible book and I can’t wait to share it with my children when they are older as well as everyone I know.


  11. Congrats on your challenge progress! I think I have 2 more and I’m done. Of course my “N” book is giving my trouble. The first one was a DNF and the new pick is just sooo annoying. The lead should have been an unlikable character. Struggling through though.

    Glad to know The Hate You Give is very worthy of a read. It’s on my never-ending TBR.


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