August 2018 Reading Wrap-Up!

Hi all! 

Welcome to my August Reading Wrap-Up for 2018! I am really happy with all of the books I managed to read this month, especially as my newborn is only 8 weeks old! I was able to knock off a few from my TBR, as well as my Monthly Classic. I didn’t read the Sassy Book Club pick for the month as I had already read it in May (it was The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater) which made things easier. If you are interested, the live show will be held on MissSassyKassie’s YouTube Channel on September 8th at 5pm PST. Without further ado, let’s get into the reviews! 

1.) THE DREAM THIEVES (BOOK #2 OF THE RAVEN CYCLE) BY MAGGIE STIEFVATER (OVERDRIVE – AUDIO BOOK)

Order a copy here

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Screenshot from my Overdrive account

PLOT: I don’t want to spoil any of the plot as this is the sequel, so check out my May 2018 Reading Wrap-Up! for a synopsis on the first book – The Raven Boys.

MINI REVIEW: I found the sequel to be just as interesting and funny as the first book. A lot more was explained and the characters continued to develop in directions I hadn’t anticipated. I think Ronan is my favourite. He’s such a complex person; both tortured and soft at the same time. I’m excited for the third novel.

RATING: I gave this 4/5 stars.

2.) A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC (BOOK #1 OF THE SHADES OF MAGIC TRILOGY) BY V.E. SCHWAB (KINDLE BOOK)

Order a copy here

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Screenshot from my Kindle 

PLOT: This is the first book in a dark fantasy trilogy by V.E Schwab. It follows Kell, a magic smuggler, who can travel between alternate realities of London. There is a Red, White, Black and Grey London; all highly different from the next. Kell is from Red London and has grown up working for the royal family, unaware of who his real parents are. One day, he crosses paths with pirate thief, Delilah Bard and together, they find themselves in the middle of a dangerous plot fraught with dark magic.

MINI REVIEW: To be perfectly honest, this book wasn’t what I expected, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it. I loved loved loved the character of Delilah Bard. She was so sassy and devoid of any moral compass. I was also fascinated by the different London’s and how they compared to one another. My main issue with the story was that not a whole lot happened and I didn’t feel that it was overly adventurous. Some people have compared it to Harry Potter. I didn’t get that vibe at all. Having said that, I am looking forward to the rest of the series.

RATING: I gave this 4/5 stars.

3.) THE SEVEN HUSBANDS OF EVELYN HUGO BY TAYLOR JENKINS REID (PHYSICAL BOOK)

Order a copy here

PLOT: Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo, is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now? Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband has left her, and her professional life is going nowhere. Summoned to Evelyn’s luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. From making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the 80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way, Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn’s story nears its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.

MINI REVIEW: I picked this book up because everybody who has read it, has said it’s the book of the year. Well, they weren’t wrong. I could have read it in one sitting if I didn’t have a newborn. From the very beginning, I was so captivated and mesmerised by Evelyn’s story. She felt like a real-life actress. It was hard to believe it was a work of fiction. Her tale was one of pure heartbreak and I found myself getting very emotional, especially towards the end. The writing was simply flawless. It made me want to read more by Taylor Jenkins Reid. If you’re going to read one book this year, make it this one. I’ve already pushed it onto my family. It was phenomenal. 

RATING: I gave this 5/5 stars.

4.) OLIVER TWIST BY CHARLES DICKENS (E-BOOK) – MONTHLY CLASSIC PICK FOR AUGUST 2018

Order a copy here

Screenshot from my iBooks app

PLOT: This story follows orphan Oliver Twist, born in a workhouse and sold into apprenticeship with an undertaker. After escaping, Twist travels to London, where he meets “The Artful Dodger”, a member of a gang of juvenile pickpockets led by the elderly criminal, Fagin. From there, he lands himself unexpectedly into a home that could just be the key to his heart – a family… 

MINI REVIEW: I found myself uttering “Poor Oliver” at least fifty times throughout this novel. There are so many instances where he is badly mistreated and abused for absolutely no good reason. The infamous scene where he asks for more food astounded me. I couldn’t believe how strongly the authorities reacted; as though he had murdered somebody. This is my second Dickens novel. I definitely liked it better than Great Expectations; probably because one of my favourite Disney movies growing up was Oliver & Company, which is a cartoon re-telling involving cats and dogs. I was very satisfied with the ending, considering everything Oliver went through beforehand.

RATING: I gave this 4.5/5 stars. 

I hope you enjoyed this post! What was your favourite read of August 2018? What is on your TBR for September? I would love to know. Thanks for reading! 

Peace & Love xoxo 

This post contains links to my Book Depository Affiliate which helps fund my blog. I am not being paid or sponsored for this post/products – all my thoughts/opinions are my own. 

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