Summer 2015 Book Challenge: July Check-In

I am proud to say, July was one of my best reading months on record!

(July 1, 2015) 25 points: Read a book that is part of a series with at least four books. | The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith (235 pages, )
This was a book that I most likely wouldn't normally read. Mystery generally isn't a genre I seek out, but I found it a surprisingly enjoyable read. I found the protagonist, a female detective from Botswana to be very likable and the read was light and pleasant. I would definitely read more from this series in the future. 
(July 7, 2015) 20 points: Read a book with the name of a city, state or country in the title. | Looking for Alaska by John Green (221 pages, )
My expectations were high since like everyone else, I loved The Fault in our Stars. I think if my angsty, existential teenage self has read this, I would have rated it higher, but it was just kind of mediocre for me. 
(July 8, 2015) 5 points: Freebie! Read any book that fits the general rules. | Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison (352 pages, )
I love Holly Madison, and will continue to love Holly Madison, but I do think she may have overdone it playing the victim card. I have no doubt that much of her retelling of her time at the Mansion was true, but I think she neglected to include the positive aspects of the experience, choosing to focus only on the negatives and shirk responsibility for her decisions.
That being said, I stayed up past 2am to finish this in one sitting. Holly has a very likable writing style and if you're looking for a guilty pleasure read, this is a good one!  
(July 23, 2015) 15 points: Read a book with "light" or "dark" in the title. | The Christmas Light by Donna VanLiere (224 pages)
I received this book around Christmastime through a Goodreads giveaway. Honestly, it should have been a really quick read, but I struggled to get through it. It was written in the third person omniscient point-of-view which felt really weird and awkward to read. I know VanLiere's books have been made into Hallmark channel movies in the past and it felt like she was writing the script for another cheesy Christmas movie.
It does get two stars for warm fuzzies, however. I needed something light after finishing the super dark, The Girl on the Train, so this did the trick!


July also kicked off Erin's Book Challenge! Although Erin is also a blogger and another self-described book challenge addict, her challenge format is Facebook-based and really interactive which I love. She also maintains albums of the all the different books picked so members of the group can go in at any point and see how books have been rated by other challenge participants. If you're interested in joining another book challenge, hers is a good one!
(July 1, 2015) 15 points: A book with a number in the title  | The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith (235 pages, )
(July 7, 2015) 10 points: A book with a three word title | Looking for Alaska by John Green (221 pages, 
(July 8, 2015) 5 points: Freebie! Read any book that fits the general rules.Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison (352 pages, )
(July 22, 2015) 10 points // A book with one of the following words in the title: "girl(s)," "boy(s)," "wo(man)," "wo(men)" | The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (323 pages, )
I chose this book for the "suspense" category in the Literary Ladies Book Challenge (see below), otherwise I probably wouldn't have read this book. I like books that leave me with the warm fuzzies, so this was not my cup of tea. I did find it well-written and suspenseful. For fans of Gone Girl, this would be a good recommendation. However, there were several graphic/violence scenes that I had a difficult time listening to (I "read" the audiobook). I would not recommend this book to someone who had a history of abuse, or was sensitive to violence.


Just when you thought I was done, I obviously have to include my reads for the Literary Ladies Book Challenge (Go here to see my Preliminary List):

(July 1, 2015) book with a non-U.S. author | The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith (235 pages, ) 
(July 8, 2015) A book written by a comedian or celebrity | Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison (352 pages, )
(July 22, 2015) A suspenseful book – a mystery, a thriller, a book about revenge!  | The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins (323 pages, ) 


Images courtesy of GoodReads.com

1 comment:

  1. I highly recommend reading the book The Girl on the Train: A Novel.
    I just finished reading it today, and I think its a very good book.

    I got mine off Amazon and they delivered it in just 2 days.
    Here's a link for the book on Amazon:
    The Girl on the Train: A Novel