This month was a bit crazy in terms of books – I bought more than I usually do, and I was given a whole lot. So I have this beautiful pile of new books, some of which I have already read over the course of June!
First of all, my sister Jess and I were sent two books by our friend Grace (because she’s fab, OK?) which were The Call by Peadar Ó Guilín and The Loneliest Girl In The Universe by Lauren James. The Call is about a fantasy world where all teenagers are ‘Called’ at some point before they reach adulthood; when this happens, they are sent into the Grey Land, before returning to the normal world three minutes later. Most die, and in this story the main characters are fighting to protect themselves from both this fantastical enemy, and ones within their own school (I read this book this month and was absolutely hooked). The Loneliest Girl In The Universe is the story of a boy and a girl, alone on separate spaceships travelling to a new planet; the two communicate via email, and slowly fall in love. This sounds adorable, and I love Lauren James’ writing, so I am so excited to read this!
As some of you know, I did a week working at Gallic Books in London, and they were super lovely and gave me a number of their titles to read, such as Murder on the Eiffel Tower by Claude Izner, which is about a young bookseller who tries to solve the mystery of a woman who dropped dead on the Eiffel Tower; Hector and the Search For Happiness by Francois Lelord, the story of a psychiatrist who takes a trip around the world to discover true happiness. I was also given an ARC of Green Lion by Henrietta Rose-Innes, which is a story set in Cape Town about a man and the last black-maned lioness in the world. Next I was given a copy of The Suicide Shop by Jean Teulé; in this story, set in the future, many people have lost the will to live, and have turned to The Suicide Shop as the answer to their troubles (I think this sounds particularly interesting). The final two books I read during my time at Gallic Books: The Portrait by Antoine Laurain and The Threat Level Remains Severe by Rowena MacDonald, both of which I enjoyed immensely.
To my delight, I was also given a few ARCs from Andy, the lovely bookstore manager. As well as a copy of The Loneliest Girl In The Universe, which he (for some reason I do not understand) did not want, I was also given a copy of The Dollmaker of Kraków by R. M. Romero (a story about a girl and a dollmaker in Poland during the Nazi occupation), Grace by Paul Lynch (a coming-of-age novel about two siblings in nineteenth-century Ireland) and The Unquiet Dead by Ausma Zehanat Khan (a mystery thriller about an accident that unravels to reveal other complications).
I did a second week of work experience at Andersen Press (which was as awesome as it sounds), and they also sent me off with some wonderful books at the end of the week. Firstly, Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt, which is about a fourteen-year-old boy, who has a daughter he’s never met, and is struggling to deal with his new life, living with a foster family (this has been my first July read, and it left me an emotional wreck). I also was given Word Nerd by Susin Nielsen, a story about a twelve-year-old boy and an ex-con, who form a friendship over their love of scrabble (I’ve loved Susin Nielsen’s other books, so am very excited for this), as well as Junk by Melvin Burgess, a modern classic that I have been wanting to read for years! I now have two books by Jeff Zentner: The Serpent King and Goodbye Days, two young adult novels that look super interesting! Finally, I was also given The Otherlife by Julia Gray, a story about a boy who can see into a ‘world of ancient Norse myths, wilderness and danger’, and Goodbye Stranger by Rebecca Stead, which is about a girl struggling to fit in with her friends as secrets collect between them. All of these look so interesting, and there is such a variety – I cannot wait to read them!
I bought myself a copy of The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli, which is the story of Molly Peskin-Suso, who has been in (unrequited) love a grand total of twenty-six times. I loved Becky Albertalli’s first book, and this sounds so amazing! I also bought The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord, which is about a girl who volunteers as a counselor at a camp for troubled children.
Finally, I bought myself a few non-YA titles – 1984 by George Orwell (which I have been wanting to read for ages), Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf, and The Power by Naomi Alderman (which is about a world in which women have developed a ‘power’ which flips the power dynamic between men and women).
So, lots and lots of books this month! Unfortunately, the little bookshelf I have in my room is crammed full of books, so these are now piling up in a majestic tower on my desk. I plan to build a bookshelf in my room this month, so I am really looking forward to getting my books organised. Please do let me know if you have read any of these books already, or if you think any of them sound extra interesting!