Sorry for being MIA – I was feeling a bit slump-ish in May & June but finally got my reading mood back in July! So happy to finally do a blog post again, it feels like it has been way too long. Let’s look at some quick stats before diving into the ratings!
✨ Quick July stats ✨
In July I managed to make it through 5 books, of which 3 were print books (2 hardcovers and 1 paperback) and 2 were audiobooks. I usually read a lot of ebooks as well but in July I was working my way through the 700-pages of Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson on my phone and didn’t manage to finish it yet.
July books were not ultimate favourites, but there was really good reads in the mix! I read one 3-star, one 3.5-star, and three 4-star books! Overall a decent reading month, and I’m really happy that I liked everything that I read.
Although I only read 5 books, July included many different genres! Two of my reads were YA fantasy (which is always gravitate to, so this is no surprise haha), but I also read one horror, one ya contemporary and one literary fiction! I even managed to finish one book in Finnish, woop woop!
✨ What I read in July ✨
*I have tried to include trigger warnings with my best effort, but because I read some of these books a while ago, it is possible that I have completely forgotten, missed or mis-remembered something. Please comment below if you notice an issue, and definitely check other trigger warnings too if you are worried about a specific one – Storygraph does a great job of listing trigger warnings!
Wicked Fox by Kat Cho. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4/5 stars 📖 Hardcover 🧚♀️ Fairyloot copy 🐉 Fantasy ✨ Korean Author, Korean protagonists
Wicked Fox completely surprised me! I thought it would be a light high-school drama, but it ended up being a very impatful, hard-hitting YA Fantasy with a lot of complexity to it. Exactly like everyone said, the book read like a K-drama which I absolutely loved. A complex mix of characters who are trying to desperately survive against the odds! I especially loved the lore about gumiho – the nine tailed fox!
Who do I recommend it: Anyone who watches k-dramas, Anyone looking for an angsty love story with magical aspects, Anyone interested in Korean mythology about the gumiho
TW*: Parental death, parental neglect, grief, parental abuse, PTSD??, violence, bullying
Call Down the Hawk by Maggie Stiefvater. ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 3/5 stars ☁️ Paperback 🐉 Fantasy ✨ LGBT+
The first book in the Dreamer series by Maggie Stiefvater follows Ronan, one of the main characters in Raven Cycle. I went into this so excited because I love Adam, and I was certain that we will get a lot of Adam if we are getting a lot of Ronan – those two just belong together in a package deal. Unfortunately, I didn’t get as much Adam as I wanted, and also Call Down the Hawk felt like it progressed very very slowly at times. The writing is beautiful, but I got a big impatient with the slow plot.
Who do I recommend it: Fans of the Raven Cycle series, Anyone looking for a slow-paced, magical book to read on a rainy day
TW*: murder, killing, gore, not being able to move, parental death, rejection, grief
You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4/5 stars 🎧 Audiobook 🍓 Contemporary ✨ Black author, Black protagonists, rep on mental health: anxiety, panic attacks, LGBT+
This was a delightful audiobook! You Should See Me in a Crown tells about Liz who has to take part in the competition to become a prom queen in order to secure a scholarship to med school. The main character is a strong, complex character who was so nice to read about – I love how real Liz was and how tirelessly she sought for what she wanted but she also wasn’t scared to rethink her path. This book has one of the CUTEST f/f relationships I have ever read and it was sweet I cannot even
Who do I recommend it: Everyone looking for a sweet book to read with a wholesome f/f relationship, Anyone looking for great rep on anxiety and panic attacks, Anyone looking for just an all together wholesome read that doesn’t shy away from difficult topics
TW*: Illness of a loved one, grief, mental health including panic attacks, bullying, discussion on racism
Earthlings by Sayaka Murata. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4/5 stars 🎧 Audiobook 👻 Horror ✨ Asian author, Asian protagonists
I picked up Earthlings after falling in love with Sayaka Murata’s other book, Convenience Store Woman. These two books are definitely quirky in the same way, but whereas Convenience Store Woman is a wholesome and empowering story, Earthlings is the type of odd that quickly skews into weird and creepy. The synopsis for this one is definitely a bit difficult to share, but I think it is mainly a tale about Natsuki and how she copes with awful abuse in her past. Please make sure you are ready to read about the subject matter of Earhlings before starting it! It’s an intense book.
Who do I recommend it: Anyone looking for something over-the-top weird, something difficult and taboo. Anyone looking for a deep discussion on societal norms and is fine to read about breaking them.
TW*: abuse, graphic sexual abuse, paedophilia, parental neglect, parental abuse, bullying, violence, death of a loved one, cannibalism, incest, pressure to have children, pressure to have sex/possible ace-phobia?, sexism
Bolla by Pajtim Statovci. ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 3.5/5 stars 📖 Hardcover 🌼 Literary fiction 💙 Read in Finnish ✨ Experiences from the Kosovo War, rep on being refugee, LGBT+
My goal this year is to read more books in Finnish (my native language) and so I picked up this short novel that I received for Christmas a couple years ago. Bolla is already translated into English so you can also check it our if you want to! I have very much mixed feelings on this one. The writing is absolutely beautiful, but the characters were very difficult to read about. We follow Arsim, a Kosovo Albanian man who gets married young only to later find out that he might be gay. Arsim is abusive to his wife and children, an ableist and a fatphobe. He goes about destroying things with his anger. Milos, a Kosovo Serbian man Arsim falls in love with, is not much better. He has a lot of trauma with him but he is also a prisoner to his own ableism and racism. The story follows the two and how they seek each other after being separated by the war. Despite the sad subject matter, the writing style is so beautiful that I read Bolla almost compulsively, unable to put it down.
Who do I recommend it: Anyone interested in reading about Kosovo War and how horribly it influenced a lot of people, Anyone looking for a beautifully created sad story with a lot of complexity, Anyone who doesn’t mind unlikable characters and seeks something hard-hitting
TW*: racism, ableism, fatphobia (graphic), sexual abuse, sexual harassment of a minor, dysfunctional mental hospitals, prisons, war, sexism, domestic violence (abuse on wife and children), PTSD
Have you read any of these books? What did you think? And what have you read lately? I would love to know!
Sorry about being MIA again! I have been working on a very big, exciting project that I’ll definitely talk more about this month! Meanwhile you can check @EreaderStudy for more detail 👀
I can’t wait to get more into blog posts again, both reading and writing!
Thank you so much for reading and I hope you have a magical day 💫