That seems like quite a large pile of books to have read in one month, well for me at least. I think I worked out that I have read something like twenty seven books so far this year which considering one of those was War and Peace, isn’t bad going. I would have been happy to have said that War and Peace was the only book I read this year to be fair. It still feels like quite an accomplishment! Ha! Anyway, this month was one of those months where I was on a good book roll. I love it when that happens. Just one brilliant book after another.
First of all we have Wildflower Bay by Rachael Lucas but actually, more on that in a later post. I plan to write a proper review all of its own in the next week or so I loved it! I have been good friends with Rachael for too many years to count and she very kindly arranged for a copy of her latest book to be sent to me by her publishers before its official release on 11th August. How amazing is that? I was over the moon! Anyway, keep your eyes peeled for my review but in the meantime, you can pre-order the paperback on Amazon or download by Kindle now.
Next we have The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George. I was really looking forward to reading this book but I have to confess that it took me a while to get into it. The book has been translated from German into English and I think it might have lost some of its charm along the way which is a shame because the story itself is really very sweet about a Paris bookseller who prescribes books for his customers to soothe their troubled souls. His shop is actually a barge and he ends up sailing away on a journey to soothe his own troubled heart. If you liked The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, I think you would like this too. It had a very similar feel about it and is well worth sticking at if like me the writing style doesn’t quite flow like you would want it to.
Then we have The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox by Maggie O’Farrell which was absolutely brilliant. I’m playing catch up with all of Maggie O’Farrell’s books after reading (and loving) Instructions for a Heatwave the other month. I’m not sure how I have missed her up until now but I plan to read all of her books if I possibly can! This book was unbelievably gripping I couldn’t put it down. It tells the story of Iris who out of the blue is told that her aunt Esme who she never knew existed is about to be released from a psychiatric unit. The one person who should know more is Iris’ grandmother Kitty but she is very elderly and in a home. It is really cleverly written and the story gently unfolds as we hear from both the past and present through Iris and Esme and also Kitty’s jumbled memories. Utterly brilliant.
Next we have The Talented Mr Ripley by Patricia Highsmith which is without doubt now one of my very favourite books of all time. I loved the film but (shamefully) have never read the book until now and man alive was it a treat. It is staggering to think that this book was written back in the 1950s, it feels so sharp that it could have been written yesterday. Seriously good. An amazing plot and heart stopping tension. I also found myself questioning my own morals when I was rooting for a schizophrenic murderer. That’s some seriously good writing right there.
And last but by no means least we have We’ll Always Have Paris by Emma Beddington. I must admit that it is rare for a non-fiction book to really grab me like this did but it was superb. I knew of Emma through her blog of course Belgian Waffle and had been dying to read her book. This is a really witty memoir that at times had me roaring with laughter but it also had a very tender side too and left me in floods of tears. At the heart of this book though is the warmth and love that has always shone through her writing in her blog. I loved every minute of it.
If you are looking for some holiday reads, then I can definitely recommend all of the books that I have read this month. As always, I will be sharing the books that I am reading over on social media (you’ll find me on Twitter and Instagram as @BySarahMostly these days) although I suspect that my reading pile might be slighter slimmer next month as school is out for summer! Ha!