Book Challenge, Book Reviews, My Bookshelf
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Bookshelf {July}

This month meant the start of my reading challenge! I’ve been doing pretty well despite the fact that I lost steam in the last week.

What You Left Behind by Samantha Hayes

1. What You Left Behind – Samantha Hayes {3.5 stars} 

I began with this book because I’ve been hearing more and more good things about mystery/thriller books – before this the only mystery books I had touched were written by J.K. Rowling. The author, Samantha Hayes grew up in the West Midlands, left school at sixteen, avoided university and took jobs ranging from being a private detective to fruit picker. She lived on a kibbutz, and spent time in Australia and the USA, before finally becoming a crime-writer. Her writing career began when she won a short story competition in 2003. Her novels are family-based psychological thrillers, with the emphasis being on ‘real life fiction’. The basic gist of her book is:

“Two years after a terrifying spate of teenage suicides, the remote village of Radcote has just begun to heal. Then a young man is killed in a freak motorcycle accident and a suicide note is found among his belongings. When a second boy is found dead shortly thereafter, the nightmare of repeat suicides once again threatens the community.”  I thought it was very interesting and despite by best efforts wasn’t able to figure it out until the book revealed the truth to me. In my opinion that means the book did what it was supposed to and it’s a pretty good book! Now mystery isn’t my favorite genre so I don’t think it’s absolutely marvelous, but it is definitely worth a read.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

2. The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins {4.5 stars}

I was on a roll with reading thriller books this past month and since everyone has been buzzing about this book I had to include it in the challenge. It was a little difficult to read through all of the main characters blunders (especially when no one thought she was credible) but the story kept me on the edge of my seat and I was, once again, surprised by the ending.

3. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen {4.5 stars}

I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to get around to reading this classic but I finally did it. And while I thought I enjoyed the recent movie and the BBC show I felt that they both didn’t do the book justice. There is so much great detail in the book and much more explanation as to everything that is happening which I think made it a great read. The only difficulty I had was getting into the language at first and then trying to not be impatient for the part when Elizabeth changes her mind about Mr. Darcy!

4. Howl’s Moving Castle – Diana Jones {5 stars}

This book was right up my alley and even though I was hesitant to read it because I love the movie so much my fears were for nothing. This book was amazing and reminded me slightly of Harry Potter I (once again) loved all of the extra details that we got in the book and I thought the explanations of everything were done better in words. The only thing that I didn’t like was that there’s no sequel!!

I’m currently reading The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander because Amy convinced me that it would be a lot more fun and easier to read than A Tale of Two Cities for the challenge. So far that’s the only book I’ve changed but there might be one other one that I’m not sure about yet.

What have you been reading lately?

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