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The 13 Books I Read in July (and What I'm Reading in August)

The 13 Books I Read in July (and What I'm Reading in August)

Hey look — what’s that? It’s summer, speeding past us like a rocket ship. Can you believe it’s already August? That means it’s time to look back back on last month’s reading and forward to what’s on deck next.


What I Read in July

I think July was a record reading month for me. I read 13 books! A big part of that was participating in this month’s 24in48 readathon, where I read for 24 out of one weekend’s 48 hours. That weekend alone got me through three books.

Not only did I make a good-sized dent in my to-be-read (TBR) pile (but not big enough, never big enough lol), so many of the books I read this month were fantastic. The one good thing about having a giant list is that there’s no time for books that don’t promise excellence.

  1. Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo
    Rating: 5 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like dark fantasy novels, and are prepared for heavy topics. Trigger warnings in my review.

  2. The Philosopher's War by Tom Miller
    Rating: 4 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like magical realism / fantasy and historical fiction

  3. A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab
    Rating: 4 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like the magical feeling you get from great fantasy, and characters that you love as much as real people. (This is book #2 in the Shades of Magic trilogy.)

  4. The Confessions of Frannie Langton by Sara Collins
    Rating: 5 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like historical fiction told from an oft-overlooked perspective, and you’re looking to expand your reading on race, slavery, mental health, and romantic relationships between women in history.

  5. Hollow Kingdom by Kira Jane Buxton
    Rating: 4.5 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like to laugh out loud and also tear up from one page to the next. SO FUNNY and creative, and so beautiful. Seriously, just go read my review on this one.

  6. Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James
    Rating: 4 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like long, sweeping, dense, epic fantasy novels and don’t mind the commitment.

  7. On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong
    Rating: 5 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like prose that reads like poetry, focusing on LGBTQ authors and perspectives, and letting yourself get really emotional.

  8. Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
    Rating: 3 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like light, fun, adventurous fantasy novels that feature diverse mythologies (this one is Mayan).

  9. The Dearly Beloved by Cara Wall
    Rating: 5 / 5 (full review)
    For you if: You like to have your heart broken and repaired, feeling connected to the rest of humanity through shared experience, and reading novels where the plot is the characters’ lives.

  10. A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab
    Rating: 4.5 / 5 (full review to come)
    For you if: You like epic conclusions to fantastic magical trilogies!

  11. This Year You Write Your Novel by Walter Mosley
    Rating: 3.5 / 5 (full review to come)
    For you if: You like to play around with the idea of writing someday and want to know more about the process.

  12. Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David Epstein
    Rating: 3.75 / 5 (full review to come)
    For you if: You like big idea nonfiction. Maybe you are thinking about a career change or feel like you aren’t specialized enough in your field — this book explains why that might be (more than) okay.

  13. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
    OK, so I ALMOST finished this one in July — I only have a bit left — but I'm counting it! Full review to come, I promise.


My August TBR

Let’s see how this goes, lol. Some may get pushed to September, but I’m planning a staycation from work, so maybe I’ll get to them all after all! Click for more details on Goodreads.

  1. The In-Betweens by Mira Ptacin
    Thanks, Mira and W. W. Norton for giving me an advanced reading copy (ARC)! Out October 29.

  2. Cantoras by Carolina De Robertis
    This is also an ARC. Out September 3.

  3. The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow
    This is an ARC I got at BookCon. Out September 10.

  4. The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates (!)
    His first novel! An ARC I received via NetGalley. Out September 24.

  5. Elements of Fiction by Walter Mosley
    Another NetGalley ARC; yes this is the same author as This Year You Write Your Novel above! Out September 3.

  6. Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli
    Longlisted for the 2019 Booker Prize!

  7. Mostly Dead Things by Kristen Arnett

  8. Normal People by Sally Rooney

  9. Because Internet: Understanding the New Rules of Language by Gretchen McCulloch

    I am expecting this one in the mail from Riverhead Books in exchange for an honest review.

  10. Survive and Resist: The Definitive Guide to Dystopian Politics by Amy L Atchison
    I am expecting this one in the mail from Columbia University Press in exchange for an honest review.

  11. An American Sunrise: Poems by Joy Harjo, first Native American Poet Laureate of the United States
    I am expecting this one in the mail from W. W. Norton in exchange for an honest review.

  12. Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do by Dr. Jennifer L. Eberhardt
    This one is part of my subscription to the Next Big Idea Club.

  13. Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
    I’ll be adventuring into this one via audiobook!

  14. Furyborn by Clare Legrand
    This one will be a re-read so that I can read the sequel, Kingsbane, next!


WHEW.

What did you finish in July, and what you’re reading in August? Have you read any of these books? Tell me in the comments!

The Best Books I Read Between January and June

The Best Books I Read Between January and June