Book Update: June (Pride books! 🌈)

Hey Happy Bookworms!

Whoaaaaa I’m back 😆 How are we all doing since yesterday? Hope not much has changed.

Anyway! Happy Pride month everyone! 🏳️‍🌈
I finally participated (??) in reading for pride because last year I was so caught up with other books I don’t even know. Anyway since ya’ girl has no foreplaning skills she kinda forgot to put any holds on books, like I knew it was pride but my brain didn’t make the correlation. Obviously all LGBTQ+ books had about a million holds on them so I only got my hands on some about half way through the month but 🤷‍♀️ didn’t matter BECAUSE BOIIISSS I READ 15 BOOKS THIS MONTH

So feel free to skip through to what interests you 😂
It goes in age order to break it up a bit so a couple MG, YA then adult.

*All reviews will be spoiler free because otherwise it’s not really helpful to anyone, unless otherwise stated
*🌠 means that I got an e-copy from netgalley in exchange for an honest review
* I’ll mark all my pride reads 🏳️‍🌈


–Children–

🌠 Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen Children’s Stories) by Gemma Barder 

This was the sweetest little book – an adorable adaption of pride & prejudice (although admittedly I haven’t read the original yet – but I want to! Especially after this 😄) I just had a great time reading it 🙂

Permanent Rose by Hilary McKay

I really should have read this quicker! You need to just sit down & read for these books & I spent way too long dilly dallying at the beginning smh

This was the first one where I had no recollection of from my childhood – I still loved it of course but not as much as the first 2 (mainly because Rose is my least favourite Casson family member)

–Young Adult–

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire

I think this had a little LGBTQ+ in it & goodreads is telling me it did but I can’t really remember….YES! I think it had a trans love interest.

Woah I was not expecting that!
At first it kinda reminded me of miss peregrine’s home for peculiar children (the concept, I’ve never actually read the book just watched the movie)
But it was creepy & cool & I actually LOVED it.
I liked that it was so short (Only 170 pages) but I also feel like it would have been better if it had been allowed to build up a bit more & also if it had taken a bit more thinking for the characters to ‘solve’ it.
A+ world building though.

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

*sighs* Unpopular opinion: I didn’t really like it?
Idk it was just a bit too ‘quirky’ for me. The characters grew on me, as they often do in books like this but I didn’t really like Violet that much she was a bit boring. I did like Finch though but then you know…

People said they cried a lot for this book so I guessed what was going to happen semi seriously & well it did. I guess I was sort of prepared for it 🤷‍♀️

🏳️‍🌈 The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee

I know Monty is meant to be a lovable mess but I just found him…a mess. He was incredibly self-centered & just a train wreck in general. That doesn’t mean he was all bad but the second hand embarrassment was REAL. I think his impulsive nature was played up a bit too much so it was less of a ‘aww Monty messed up again’ and more of a ‘FOR GOD’S SAKE MONTY GET A GRIP’. Monty’s escapades aside, I did think Percy & Monty were adorable but such a slow burnnnn!

I loved Felicity but I was a little shocked by her take on homosexuality – I don’t think it’s the best thing for young people to see. I know it was meant to be historically accurate but the fact that she’s a likeable main character makes her views a little problematic. It’s not like some side character we can all shun & type angry abuse about you know? We’re meant to like her.
And I get that she does try to understand but still what she’s saying is troublesome because it’s never really resolved, obviously the book is pro LGBTQ+ but I feel like we needed a moment at the end where she makes it clear that it’s ok (also would enforce the growth mindset that we’re all trying to promote rn) I can’t really comment on any of the rep but I’ve heard a couple people say it’s not great 🤷‍♀️

The plot was ok. I don’t really read adventures set in historical fiction so it wasn’t really to my tastes but it was exciting? It’s one of those stories that one bad thing happens after the other though & that can get annoying as it knocks the surprise element out of it and can actually feel quite repetitive.

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas

Eh I read another one – honestly I just have a lot of fun reading this series & laughing at how absolutely awful it is. I mean this is peak trash.

I remember thinking that Feyre was gonna be pregnant in A Court of Wings and Ruin but that didn’t happen 🤷‍♀️ It’s probably not the smartest time to be trying for a baby but you do you boo 😂 <– me judging fictional character’s life decisions

Sourdough by Robin Sloan

I’m sorry, are you bored of hearing about this book? TOO BAD.
I’ll keep this short: read it or check this post if you still need to be convinced to read it.
I’m also forcing my mum to read this so I’m ready to eye up my next victim & force feed you this book.

🏳️‍🌈 We Set the Dark on Fire by Tehlor Kay Mejia

This whole book felt like a preamble. It was like, up until the last 2 chapters, still the introduction with a bit of rising action. The plot was just spaced out really badly so not a lot happened & then suddenly *sensory overload* EVERYTHING happened.

I didn’t really understand the world building. I couldn’t place the period of the book, like they had snazzy cars & devices to validate papers but there was no mention of CCTV or phones or anything? Which I know this is a fantasy/dystopia so it isn’t on the same timeline as our world & therefore doesn’t have to play by the same rules but if you’re gonna use some advanced technology then… I don’t know how she could have added more clarity because Dani couldn’t have been like ‘yeah we don’t have phones, kinda sucks’ so I get I’m being a bit unhelpful but I spent half the book worrying about Dani tripping sensors or being caught on CCTV & then being like wait. Is there CCTV?!?!

And finally, Carmen & Dani – I liked them & I didn’t. The whole start of their relationship felt a bit weird, like it was very clichéd (hated each other in high school, oh no the bullying was just a defensive mechanism, let’s fall in love now all is forgiven *swoons*) and a bit instalovey because it all just happened so fast but I did like them once I had time to adjust.

Oh! Bonus point: Dani was a really weak character, just me? Ok.
She was just very fickle & I feel like her personality wasn’t really cemented because her reactions changed a lot, I couldn’t really feel her out. I understand that most of her traits were hammered into her from a young age & not really her own but she was just arrogant and annoying and contradictory and yeah, I just felt no emotional connection to her whatsoever 🤷‍♀️

🏳️‍🌈 This Book is Gay by Juno Dawson

…I wonder if this is for pride?

No but Juno Dawson is one of my favourite British (if not overall) authors & she’s basically an auto-read for me. So I wanted to delve into some of her older books & this is actually non-fiction so something new for me!

This is a brilliant book if you’re a young LGBTQ+ person or questioning as it covers the whole spectrum, not just being gay. I read this as an ally so of course, it wasn’t really aimed at me but it was still an interesting read although the writing style was a little childish which doesn’t make sense due to the content of some of the chapters 🤷‍♀️

🏳️‍🌈 Proud by Mixed Authors

Did someone say Juno Dawson? Hand me pls.
Although this is a collection of short stories by various authors it’s curated by the woman, the myth, the legend.

Hands down my favourite pride read! This was one of the best collection of short stories I’ve ever read.
All of them were so good, unique & interesting and I didn’t get bored with any of them, which is crazy rare for a collection. AND EACH STORY WAS ILLUSTRATED what more could you want?

🏳️‍🌈 This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp

I love the concept of this book (which shows the events of a school shooting spanning around an hour) – it’s fascinating & unique but the story just didn’t do it for me. And I really wish we got Tyler’s perspective, even for just a bonus chapter

This book was so slow to get into which is crazy since the action started like right away but with 4 POVs and countless names & family backgrounds (also all the texts/tweets/blog bits) it was a confusing mess that even by the end I hadn’t fully figured out.
Then I didn’t like the writing style, a lot of the story was unnecessarily stretched out but also a lot of it was incredibly rushed? Like Sylvia’s big confession; there was a lot of build up & then ‘let’s quickly sum it up in one paragraph, bam, done’.
Also it seems silly to complain about pointless deaths in this book (because obviously that’s the whole point) but absjfbsatskjs WHY it wasn’t necessary

Plus why was 25% of the book additional content at the end?! 😂 like no joke smh

Adult–

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

This was really not what I was expecting 😂
I thought it was gonna be a fun 300 pageish contemporary instead it was 500 pages! 🤦‍♀️
I enjoyed most of the story & omg all the food descriptionssss! You have no idea how hungry this book made me! I also loved the little footnotes, which were so handily available on the kindle. But all of the people! And their names! I really should’ve printed out the family trees because I couldn’t keep any one straight.
I think the only thing was it jumped around a lot to different people which were sometimes quite boring 🤷‍♀️

BUT GUYS I watched the movie with my mum & A** I think it’s my favourite book to movie adaption so even if you don’t read the book, definitely watch the movie!

🏳️‍🌈 Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat

This was an unintentional pride book but was actually part of my defeat the TBR 2020 shortest books scheme thing – at only 240 pages.

This book was a train wreck that I couldn’t look away from.
It was fun though & short. It depends what you’re looking for, if you want something really trashy then go for it.
Idk Laurent kinda reminded me of Cardan from the folk of the air series, maybe that’s just me though 😂

Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey

Awww this was a really good book – more sad & touching than exciting mystery.
You get this really interesting & heartbreaking insight into someone who’s mind is deteriorating as she tries to piece together 2 mysteries simultaneously: her missing friend in the present & her missing sister in the past.
At some points it was quite confusing how both stories just ran into each other but I guess that’s the point, to give you some idea of what Maud’s going through.

I really loved seeing how Helen & Katy interacted with Maud, how caring Helen was for her & how they both tried to take care of her 💞

Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams

“Being brave isn’t the same as being okay.”

This book is so current due to the BLM movement & I really wanted to like it but it was just too slow paced for me 😦
I feel like the plot wondered around a little aimlessly and it just made it really hard to find the motivation to pick it up & read it. And while some moments were definitely funny, on the whole it wasn’t the “hilarious” story it was advertised as.

Plus Queenie is so annoying at the beginning, like I get it’s for a character development arc but she’s just so damn whinyyyy!

It did get better at the end though (probably because the story was finally filled with a sense of purpose) and I really loved how we saw Queenie accept herself & not compromise for anyone. And Darcy & Kyazike really were rocks throughout (wooo for strong female friendships!) If I’d have enjoyed the rest of the book as much as I did the end then this review would be a completely different story but I didn’t 🤷‍♀️


Sorry for such a long post! I debated splitting it up but after some consultation, it’s a wrap up so… I figure most people only pick out what interests them anyway.
Must reads: Sourdough (does it need to be said?), Proud & Every heart a doorway

Have you read any of these books? Do you plan to? TELL ME YOUR OPINIONS! Any good pride books? Or books in general this month?

Also: does anyone else wish you could filter your goodreads TBR by genre?? It would be so useful (this is where someone politely informs me that GRs does in fact have this feature…or not because their layout is pretty infuriating most of the time)

26 thoughts on “Book Update: June (Pride books! 🌈)

  1. Ash @ Starlight Strands says:

    omg ellllll 15 books!!!!! you should be very proud of yourself, that’s amazing!! 💖💖 i totally agree with you about all the bright places, it was meh for me and i don’t get the hype lmao. i’m sorry that you didn’t enjoy wstdof, though, although i agree that it had a slow start and dani could be confusing 😅 also ahh i need to read Sourdough asap!!

    this was such a great post!! ❤ also ugh i hate goodreads, i don’t think you can filter your tbr by genre… another point to add to the list of things that sucks about the site 😭😭

    Liked by 1 person

    • El says:

      Yessss I’m so glad I’ve forced so many people to put sourdough on their TBRs 😂 I also think that because I read so many books I was a bit more picky but glad you agree with all the bright places because man everyone seems to love that book for some reason 🤷‍♀️ ah how has your reading month been?

      The feature would be so useful thoughhh because as soon as your TBR exceeds 100 you can’t go through it all & like if I’m in a fantasy mood or smth I just want to be able to look at the fantasy on my TBR smh 🤦‍♀️

      Thanks for reading! I know it was a long one 😂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Aditi says:

    YESSS THE EXTREMELY LONG POST IS OUT!! aww I’m sorry that WSTDOF and Gentleman’s Guide didn’t work out for you- I want to read Gentleman’s Guide but Felicity’s unchallenged homophobia isn’t fun :///
    Also LMAO Crazy Rich Asians idk I just find that funny lololol

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Angelica (TheBookCoverGirl) says:

    You had some great reads in June! I loved the Crazy Rich Asians movie, but I keep hesitating when picking up the book. Maybe one day soon I’ll actually read it… hopefully. As for ACOFAS, peak trash is the prefect descriptor. That entire series is a mess, and yet I keep going back and reading it! Can’t lie though, I’m actually looking forward to the Nesta/Cassian novel so really it’s my fault that I keep reading those books lol

    Liked by 1 person

    • El says:

      This movie is SO good! I think I would have liked the book more if I’d been a bit more prepared for the format because I wasn’t expecting there to be so many POVs 😅
      I knowww I read it just to laugh at how utterly ridiculous everything is smh tell me if you like the Nesta novel because rn I’m not planning to read it 🤷‍♀️

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Amber says:

    15 book,s you’re putting me to shame! 😂 I must read Sourdough, like I think you mention it in every post (I’m not complaining!) so next time I go into the library I will, for sure, be scanning the shelves for it! 💕 Sounds like you’ve been reading some amazing Pride books, I feel guilty that I didn’t read any but I was going to and then I got caught up in this amazing series and I just couldn’t stop reading!! Anyways a wonderful post El and I hope you have a lovely July! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • El says:

      Ahhh I know but I think I got possessed by some kind of reading fiend idk 😂
      Yessss if I do one thing on this world it’ll be making people read that book!
      Awww do not feel bad about that! Pride month just comes around as a reminder that we should be reading diverse books but really we should be reading them all year round so you obviously planned out some pride books – doesn’t matter what month you read them in!
      But ooo what is this wonderful series? 💕

      Liked by 1 person

      • Amber says:

        Haha do you know where I can get possessed by one?! 😂
        Haha for sure the name is engraved in my mind! Thanks so much, you’re right, I can read some more diverse books in the summer for sure! That’s made me feel a lot better now ❤️ Ahh it’s amazing!! It’s called The Enemy series and I think it’s a six book series and I’m on book two now but oh my gosh I love it!! It’s basically dystopian (aka my favourite genre) but honestly I think it has a little bit of everything ❤️ The romance is awww but the suspense is everything!! I definitely need to write a review 😂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. xoxlucy says:

    At this point I feel I’ve read Sourdough bc of how often you mention it😂( its on my TBR so that’s the only proof I have that I haven’t in fact read it).
    Happy readings for July!😂

    Liked by 1 person

    • El says:

      Thank you! I really don’t know how I did it 😂
      Yessss I recommend proud so so so much! I’m sure you’ll love it! Happy (almost) July right back at ya’!

      Like

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