The Vacationers by Emma Straub
Well. I can’t say any of the characters were very likable (maybe just Lawrence). Seriously though! This may be one of the most unlikable families I’ve ever read about. I’m not sure what I was supposed to get out of this book either…what was the moral? Forgiveness? Living your truest self? Having children is the greatest joy you could ever have? Idk. Maybe this book was just over my head. 3/5
Book of Night by Holly Black
I really wanted to like this book. I REALLY wanted to like it. And some parts I actually did like, but mostly this book just felt kind of messy. The world didn’t make a ton of sense. And where Black’s vision of “Fae” is so clear, this more urban fantasy (which she’s done so well in the past with her Tithe books) just fell flat. The magic system didn’t make a ton of sense to me and there were so many new terms being thrown at me that I never got a good grasp on.
The parts I did like: the last confrontation at Salt’s house. That’s kind of it. The rest was just okay. The ending was unexpected and I’m not sure how I feel about it.
Overall, I’m disappointed and disappointed in my disappointment. 3/5
Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
It’s definitely an interesting experience to read a book as an adult that you loved as a teenager. I love the way Sarah Dessen writes. It’s like slipping on a cozy sweater on a cold day. It’s just so comfortable and easy for me.
This book in particular I reread before watching the new Netflix movie. And while I still enjoyed Auden as a character, the one who really stood out to me this time was Heidi. I hadn’t read this book since becoming a mom myself. Two kids later, let me tell you, that scene of Heidi sitting in the dark with the baby is SO REAL. I mean, I even have a really present husband, but with my first there were times when I would sit and cry and hope that ANYONE would come save me. The depictions of new motherhood were clearly written by someone who knows what it’s like.
Overall, I really enjoyed my reread. This is one that I forget about sometimes, but it’s up among Dessen’s best imo. 4/5
Book Lovers by Emily Henry
I’m so happy I liked this book! I really liked Beach Read, but People We Meet on Vacation was just okay for me. I liked the premise of the city girl who always gets dumped for the small town girl being able to tell her side of the story. Nora and Libby had a really sweet relationship and I almost wish we’d gotten MORE of that. Charlie was sweet and all, but the romance didn’t need to be as big a part of it in my opinion.
I always like getting a peek behind the publishing curtain, so that aspect was fun too. I’d like to think that in another life I’d have gotten into publishing.
Overall, I thought Henry did a good job playing with tropes. Honestly, my main complaint is that she’s managed to create another fictional book within her book that I’m dying to read. 4/5
Bad Luck Bridesmaid by Alison Rose Greenberg
I just didn’t love Zoey as a main character. Firstly, she seemed a little implausible as a person (manic pixie dream girl but as a super successful advertising exec). Secondly, I think we’re just too different. I couldn’t relate to her at all.
Then there are the flashbacks. So many flashbacks. I think the first 10 chapters is all flashback. I didn’t personally gel with the writing style from this book. Not to say that it was poorly written, I think it was fine, it just wasn’t my cup of tea.
Overall, this book was a bit of a disappointment for me. 2/5
Carrie Soto is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid
I LOVED THIS BOOK. I went into it with low expectations since I wasn’t jazzed by the synopsis and didn’t love Carrie from Malibu. But it’s TJR so I was going to read it regardless. And it totally took me by surprise. Obviously it’s beautifully written and it actually made me care about tennis (which is a true feat).
The relationship between Carrie and her father was a perfect focus for this book. Javier was a bright spot every time he was on the page. Plotwise, this book was very predictable. However, it’s still so enjoyable that I didn’t even care. Carrie is fantastic and is truly a great character. She’s complicated and imperfect but also unapologetically herself.
Overall, I just loved this book. If you’re a TJR fan, read this book. If you’re not yet a TJR fan, read this book and then binge her backlist. 5/5
Note: I received a copy of this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.