I’m very fond of some of these books and also enjoy cheesy romance novels so buckle up.
This summer I’ve made it my goal to read more. You might be thinking, “Mali, that’s very vague,” but I did it that way on purpose because I didn’t want to be disappointed if I set a numerical goal and didn’t reach it. I ended up reading a total of seven and a half books (I’m still working on one that I started in August, but in my defense it’s over 600 pages). Seven may not seem like a lot for three months, but I’m proud of myself because some of these books were long! Here are my thoughts and rankings for each of the books I’ve completed.
Spoiler alert for all following books!
7. Conversations with Friends – Sally Rooney
I think this was the shortest book I read this summer, but it took me almost the longest of all the books because I just couldn’t get into the story. I understand the appeal of this book is that you get a glimpse into the life of a seemingly normal person, but there were times in this book where I just got really frustrated with the characters and their actions. I also found that the story bored me at certain points and the Hulu show was extremely disappointing, which also affected my mood about the story. My rating for this book was a ⅗.
6. It’s always summer – Jenny Han
This is the third book in The Summer I Turned Pretty trilogy and is my least favorite of the series. This summer was my second read of this series, and I reread all three books in less than a week because I had forgotten how much I loved them. I just think the whole storyline of Belly and Jeremiah getting engaged is so stupid and frustrating because their reasoning is so immature. Despite the fact that it’s intended for pre-teens and this is my least favorite part of the series, I still think this is an incredible piece of literature. Did I read this book in two days? Yes. 3.5/5.
5. My Year of Rest and Relaxation – Ottessa Moshfegh
My thoughts on this book are very mixed. The plot is very different from other things I’ve read, which may affect my rating. Also, I knew about the trigger warnings that came with this book before I got into it, but I read it anyway. However, I don’t know if I was in the right headspace to read this book. Proceed with caution reading this but I think the story was interesting. I give this book a 3.5/5.
4. It’s not summer without you – Jenny Han
The second book in the TSITP series is my second favorite as well. This book is definitely the saddest of the three, but something about this series has me literally hooked and I think I finished this book in a day. Not much to say about it other than that I enjoyed it, but it wasn’t my favorite. ⅘.
3. Beach Reading – Emily Henry
This is the first book I have read after finishing The Summer I Turned Pretty trilogy and it was just what I needed. I really wanted another silly little romance, but something more mature. The plot between Agustus and January (By the way, who came up with those names? Emily Henry, I just want to talk) is super intriguing and relatively fast-paced. I liked the idea of their competition and friendship when writers who were once enemies became friends. I read this book in two days. Total ⅘.
2. A Judgment of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J. Maas
Okay – at first I thought I hated this book. The plot was just too similar to Beauty and the Beast but weirder, but once I got into it it was super interesting. The last quarter of this book was so crazy, interesting and kept me on my toes that by the time I got to that part I couldn’t put the book down. I’m currently reading the second book in this series and it took a turn that I wasn’t quite expecting, so I really recommend the series. I also like that the first book focuses on a specific part of the world while the second goes beyond that and offers a broader view of the world as a whole. I would guess that as the series progresses it will expand into other parts of the world as well. This book was a ⅘ for me.
1. The Summer I Got Pretty – Jenny Han
What can I say, this book had the perfect mood for me to read over the summer. When I first read this series I was about 15, which is the age Belly is in the first book, so I read it very quickly. It was an easy-to-read romance full of beaches, innocent summer crushes, and adventure. What inspired me to reread the series this summer was the fact that the Hulu show came out in June. I really liked the show but unfortunately they changed so many things from the book to the show. I still plan on watching the rest of the seasons and to be honest, I’ll probably read this series again one day because it just holds a special place in my heart. This book was a 4.5/5 for me and I think anyone who likes easy to read romance should read this series (I got it as a three in one book which is about 900 pages in case someone borrows it must, haha).
I honestly didn’t hate any of the books I read this summer and I would recommend them all. As you’ve probably noticed, I tend to be drawn to romance novels, but I’ve started venturing into other genres as well, so keep an eye out for future articles on my thoughts as I explore a more diverse selection. I’m also planning to re-read the Percy Jackson series right before the Disney Plus series comes out next year, so get ready for the return of my Greek mythology phase.