Books

Show Us Your Books- What I Read In June

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

Happy Show Us Your Books day everybody! Of course I’m linking up with Steph and Jana! I swear that this past month has seriously just flown by with our trip and everything, so while I wish that I had read more books, this month was another slower month for me, even though I loved everything that I picked up! Also if there was a theme for this month’s reading it would definitely be books that have been turned into movies or TV shows, so obviously you see my motivation for reading books this past month. Anyways, let’s get on with the reviews!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books What I Read In June

My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman ★ 5 stars

So this was the second Fredrik Backman book that I read, and while it started off slower than A Man Called Ove, I ended up loving this book way more. It made me feel all the feels, including so sad that I started crying when I was on the bus one day! But don’t let the crying deter you, definitely pick this one up and give it a chance!

Elsa’s grandmother is definitely one person that tends to drive everybody that she knows crazy, except for maybe Elsa. To Elsa she’s a superhero and takes her on multiple adventures even if they do something that they’re not supposed to, but most importantly, Elsa’s grandmother introduced her to the place of Miamas, where fairytales live forever. Suddenly Elsa’s grandmother passes away, and while Elsa is very sad and mad at her grandmother for passing away, she still decides to follow her grandmother on one last adventure, a scavenger hunt that will show her exactly the type of person that her grandmother was.

In true Fredrik Backman form, he has this way of weaving characters together into a fantastic storyline. I also loved that he had this way of making you feel for characters, even though you didn’t think that you should because of the way that they’ve acted throughout the entire book. But what I found the most endearing part of the whole book was how Fredrik Backman made the the entire fairytale world of Miamas come alive. It was so beautifully written, and definitely a book that you should pick up!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books What I Read In June

The Circle by Dave Eggers ★ 4 stars

This is a book that was actually selected for next month’s Beyond Words: A Blogger’s Book Club, but I knew that Erin’s Book Challenge 7.0 was coming up, so I thought that I’d get a jump start on reading it. A longer review will come at the end of this month, but needless to say I was super excited to read this book, especially since I really wanted to see the movie too!

Mae is beyond excited when she gets the opportunity to work at the most prestigious company in the country, The Circle. When it started a few years ago The Circle’s main product was TruYou, an online profile that combined every single social media and every other online profile you’ve ever had into one profile that can never be broken into. As Mae gets more involved with her job at The Circle, she slowly realizes that her job is definitely not just the normal desk job that she thought it was and she wonders how far she’ll go to ensure her job at The Circle.

There’s probably only one way to describe this book, and it would have to be creepy. It amazed me how far the company and everybody at the company was willing to take people’s privacy and literally throw it away. Everybody just seemed to follow blindly, and it was terrifying to think that this could actually happen one day. I have a lot more thoughts on this book, but I’ll be talking about them more at the end of the month!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books What I Read In June

American Gods by Neil Gaiman ★ 4 stars

This is also my second Neil Gaiman book for the year, but unlike with Fredrik Backman, I don’t think that American Gods is my favorite book by him. I have to admit that the main reason I wanted to read this book was because it was being turned into series on Starz, and of course I thought that it looked good, even though I had no idea what it was about.

Shadow Moon is currently finishing up his prison sentence and can’t wait to get home to his wife, when during his last week he receives a call from the warden informing him that he’s being released early because his wife has passed away. While heading home for the funeral, Shadow meets the mysterious Mr. Wednesday and agrees to enter into his service. What happens afterwards is a story that spans all the way across the United States and delves into roots of the citizens of the United States and where they came from.

I have to admit that I really didn’t know what in the world was going on with this book for a while, and if I hadn’t had the plane ride home from Europe to read, I’m not sure if I would have been hooked as immediately as I was. With that being said, I found this book to be really interesting in the fact that you got to learn about different cultures and their gods and beliefs, but also the story itself was very interesting. Without a doubt, this was the most interesting story that I’ve read recently.

So overall, definitely not the best month for me in terms of number of books read, but probably one of the best months ever as far as how great the books were that I actually read. So far the month of July is also shaping up to be another good reading month, so we’ll have to wait and see!

Have you read any good books lately? Do you like to read books that are being turned into TV shows or movies? 

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Show Us Your Books: What I Read In June: My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry, The Circle, and American Gods!

Beyond Words- The Handmaid’s Tale

It’s still so hard to believe that today is the last day of the month! June has seriously flown by, and I can’t believe that we’ll be starting July tomorrow! I’ve been trying to get back on my reading game, and while I only finished three books in June, I really enjoyed them all, so I consider that a success!

The Wandering Weekenders- Beyond Words A Blogger's Book Club

The other good thing about it being the last day of the month and also a Friday is that it’s time to link up with Carolann and Christy for the Beyond Words- A Bloggers Book Club! This past month our selection was a book that I’ve been wanting to read for a long time, so I couldn’t wait to crack it open and begin reading it, especially since it was turned into a popular show on Hulu, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.

The Wandering Weekenders- Beyond Words: The Handmaid's Tale

If you read my Show Us Your Books from earlier this month then you already saw my short little review of The Handmaid’s Tale, and in that review I said that I had picked this book up a couple of times to try and read it, but I ended up not being able to get into it. Thankfully I had a very long plane ride over to Europe to read this book, and once I got into it I honestly couldn’t put it down. I even ended staying up until midnight one night on our trip so that I could finish it because I had to know what happened!

So I’m sure that you’ve seen the previews for the Hulu show, but the whole premise behind The Handmaid’s Tale is a dystopian society in the United States in which the birth rate has declined so much that a religious sect has basically taken over the government. In this new society, women that have great ovaries and that can give birth to healthy children are forced to become handmaids to high ranking officials called commanders in the government. Their duty is to bear children for the commanders and their wives who can not have children.

But this new society didn’t just create the handmaids, they also took away pretty much everybody’s rights in society, but mostly women’s rights. Women are no longer allowed to read or write, and if they are caught doing either, the offense is punishment is extreme! Everybody is forced to be a member of this religious group, and if you are found to be against their beliefs then they could pick you up off the side of the street and torture you or even kill you. 

The Handmaid’s Tale follows one handmaid in particular, Offred, and as you slowly learn more and more about the United States, or Gilead as it’s now called, you also learn more about Offred and her life now, but also what life was like for her before everything changed. She had a husband and a child, and was happy, until everything changed.

One of the things that I found the most interesting and definitely the most scary in this book was how slowly but quickly things changed, if that makes sense. Things started to change slowly in the United States when the religious sect took over. One second it was just abolishing the Constitution because of the threat of terrorists attacks was real and the next second women couldn’t have jobs or own anything at all, and then the next second women were being forced to become handmaids. I think that the reason that I find it scary is because I can definitely see it potentially happening today, and it wouldn’t be that hard at all.

I liked a lot of other aspects of the book as well, but I don’t want to say too much because I don’t want to give away too much of the big. I really did find it fascinating though, obviously because I couldn’t put it down!

I will say that there was one thing that kind of frustrated me with this book, and that was the fact that there was no real resolution to the book. Everything just kind of ended. I’m one of those people that likes to have everything wrapped up in a neat little bow, or at least resolved, even if it’s not the ending that I would have wanted. If you’re one of those types of people, then just make sure that The Handmaid’s Tale isn’t going to do that for you. I think that’s honestly the only reason why I didn’t give it a 5 star rating.

Overall though, if you like dystopian society books, definitely pick up The Handmaid’s Tale. It’s a fascinating read, and I think having read the books is making me love the TV show all the more, especially since I already know the underlying story. If you haven’t started watching the show, definitely make sure to check it out. It’s so good! Make sure to join in next month when we’re going to read The Circle by Dave Eggers!

Have you read The Handmaid’s Tale? Have you checked out the TV series yet?

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A book review of The Handmaid's Tale. A terrifying amazing book of what could actually happen in society today.

Show Us Your Books- What I Read In May

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In February

Happy Show Us Your Books Day, happy Show Us Your Books Day! I’m so excited for another wonderful Show Us Your Books with Steph and Jana because I had some pretty solid reads this month, and I hope that you’ll get to pick some of them up! So let’s get on with the book reviews!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In May

Somewhere In Time by Richard Matheson ★ 3 stars

This was a book that I had selected for Erin’s Challenge because it had been sitting on my TBR shelf for literally years, and it fit perfectly into the time travel category. I had bought this book years ago because I loved the movie with Christopher Reeves and Jane Seymour and I thought that the book would be pretty similar to the movie, and while they were similar, I definitely didn’t like the book as much I loved the movie.

While the movie told the story of a man falling in love with a woman based upon her picture and then traveling back in time to meet her, the book was more of a man telling his story of how he falls in love with a woman based on her picture and him trying to travel back in time to meet her. Obviously it’s the same story line, but the book was a lot more shaky because the main character was originally dictating his story to a tape recorder while the movie made everything a lot smoother. So obviously I had more of an issue with the writing than the actual storyline, which is why I only rated it a 3 star.

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In May

The Wrath And The Dawn by Renee Ahdieh ★ 4 stars

This was our selection for the Beyond Words: A Blogger’s Book Club this month and you can find a full recap here. This was such a great young adult book, and I can’t recommend it enough, my only complaint is that it ended so abruptly which basically makes you want to go and pick up the sequel immediately. But that’s pretty much my complaint with all young adult books lately.

Anyways, The Wrath And The Dawn is a retelling of A Thousand And One Nights, where every day a young king takes a new bride and at dawn the next day she’s been killed. Young Shahrzad decides to marry the young king in order to seek her revenge for him killing her best friend. In order to survive the night, she tells the king a story that doesn’t end before dawn, and she continues that story for the next several nights. What she doesn’t expect as she survives more and more nights is that slowly but surely she starts to have feelings for the king that she has sworn to kill.

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In May

The Yard by Alex Grecian ★ 4 stars

Jack The Ripper has finished terrorizing the city of London, so the police force thinks, but that doesn’t mean that the people of London are willing to trust the police again. So when a member of the “Murder Squad”, one of the elite members of London’s police that are responsible for solving murders in the city, turns up dead, the rest of the Murder Squad will do whatever they can to solve his murder. But what will happen if the murderer refuses to stop?

I was seriously so excited when my work book club picked this as our book for this month because not only had it been mentioned on Show Us Your Books recently, but also it was set in London, which was one of our stops during our Europe vacation! Needless to say it was a good book, and I hope that you pick it up!

The Wandering Weekenders- Show Us Your Books- What I Read In May

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood ★ 4 stars

I have to admit that I had tried to read this book years ago, but for some reason I couldn’t get into it. When I saw that Hulu was doing a miniseries based on the book, I knew that I had to give it another chance, and I’m so excited that I did because I loved it! Plus we selected it for next month’s Beyond Words: A Blogger’s Book Club, so it was a definite win-win and I’ll be writing a more thorough review at the end of the month! But basically I loved this book, and you should totally pick it up!

In once was The United States of America, a religious sect has come into power because of fertility issues across the country. In the new world order, women who are fertile are called handmaids and are placed with high ranking officials within the new government order in hopes that they will become pregnant and have a baby for the official and his wife. Offred had a life before she became a handmaid, and she tells her story of how she became a handmaid and her time as a handmaid as well.

While I only read 4 books this month, most of them were all really solid books, and I can’t recommend them enough! If you only have the opportunity to read one book though, I definitely think that you should pick up The Handmaid’s Tale, and I have to admit that I can’t wait to watch the show either!

Have you read any good books lately? Do any of the books that I’ve read interest you?

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Show Us Your Books- What I Read In May- Reviews of Somewhere In Time, The Yard, The Wrath & The Dawn, The Handmaid's Tale.

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