August 2019 Reading Round-Up

I did not start out strong in August. I really struggled through some books that really slowed down how many books I got through. Two...

I did not start out strong in August. I really struggled through some books that really slowed down how many books I got through. Two of the five books I read were absolutely not for me, but the other three I really loved. So it wasn't a totally wasted reading month. You know the drill - scroll down for a recap.

Swipe Right for Murder* by Derek Milman ★★★★☆
Popsugar 2019 Reading Challenge Prompt: N/A

Brief synopsis:  Aidan is just your typical gay teenage boy who attends private schools, is best friends with models, and sleeps with older men through dating apps. Staying in a posh NYC hotel, he hooks up with a stranger a few floors up, then wakes up to a dead man, secret pictures of him on someone's phone, and a terroristic cult asking for something he's never even heard of. Framed for a murder he didn't commit, he has to hit the ground running and try to stop whatever crazy series of events is happening.

Overall thoughts: This book is entirely unrealistic, but oh so good. It's political and full of ethical dilemmas. This book is full of the things that make YA great, including diverse perspectives. This novel is a wild ride, but will certainly make you think! Full review here.

Hippie Cult Leader: The Last Words of Charles Manson*
 by James Buddy Day ★★☆☆☆

Popsugar 2019 Reading Challenge Prompt: N/A

Brief synopsis:  James Buddy Day is a documentarian with a fascination with Charles Manson. He pushed his luck by writing a letter to Manson requesting an interview, and low and behold, it worked. Over the last year of Manson's life, Day regularly talked with Manson to hear his side of the story. Alongside his Manson interviews, he spoke with several people inside and outside of Manson's circle to try to divulge the true story of the Manson family murders.

Overall thoughts: This book was a tough read. Reading about the Manson family murders was a hard task, and it didn't help that I felt the author sympathized with Manson. This book tries to capture the same story we've all heard over and over from a different perspective, but I felt confused most of the book. There were so many people involved and the writing didn't make it easy to keep them all straight. I think I would've been better off reading the popular Helter Skelter. Full review here.

The Whisper Man
 by Alex North ★★★★★

Popsugar 2019 Reading Challenge Prompt: N/A

Brief synopsis:  After the death of his wife, Tom Kennedy and his son Jake move to a small town to start fresh. But twenty years ago in that small town, a series of young boys went missing and were later found murdered. The Whisper Man was caught and has been in prison ever since. Now it's happening again, but it can't be the same guy because he's still in prison. But something's definitely not right and Pete, who was on the Whisper Man case two decades ago, is bound and determined to figure it out.

Overall thoughts: WOW! The hype surrounding this book is so real. It started off quite slow, but once I got into the story (exactly 100 pages in), I had a really tough time putting this book down. It's twisted and well-written. It's a beautifully written book that tells such a haunting story. Full review here.

Hello Girls* by Brittany Cavallaro & Emily Henry ★★★★☆
Popsugar 2019 Reading Challenge Prompt: N/A

Brief synopsis:  Lucille and Winona couldn't be from more different worlds. Lucy lives with her waitress mom and drug-dealing brother in a neighborhood with her extended family. She works part-time to help her family make ends meet. Winona, on the other hand, lives in a high-end home with her weatherman father and a fortune left by her mother, who overdosed when she was young. But Winona's father isn't the friendly neighborhood weatherman he seems - he's a controlling father, and Winona's mother? She's alive. And in Vegas. So Lucy and Winona make a plan to drive cross-country to find her, but they've got to make some pit stops along the way.

Overall thoughts: Marketed as a modern-day Thelma & Louise for the young adult crowd, this book is about friendship and how family is deeper than blood. I was surprised by how much I liked this book. I definitely recognized some problematic themes in the book, but overall it was really good. Full review here.

Ration* by Cody T. Luff ★☆☆☆☆
Popsugar 2019 Reading Challenge Prompt: N/A

Brief synopsis:  In a far away dystopian future, girls are shipped into apartments where they're used for their skin and body parts - and not in a sexual way. Men no longer exist, and the upperclass, if there's still such a thing, are using the less fortunate for their parts. No part of a girl is wasted, being used for food and skin grafts, for health concerns. When one girl is shipped out for committing murder through ordering too many rations, her closest friend must learn to survive in the apartments in a new role.

Overall thoughts: This book was a whole entire cringe-fest of a read. For just over 200 pages, it should've been a quick read, but I truly disliked this book. It wasn't well-written, it was sloppy, and it was insanely gorey. Full review here.

What did you read in August?

* denotes book was received free in exchange of an honest review. All opinions, as always, are 100% my own. 

You Might Also Like


  1. Hello Girls sounds SUPER interesting, just added it to my list!

    1. It was a really fun read, and also kind of dark. I think you'll enjoy it!