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Joyful July | July Wrap-Up

Updated: Mar 12, 2021

Hello Book Lovers!

I truly apologize for being gone for two months, not going to lie, I have been neglecting the blog. But I'm back baby and more motivated than ever! With that being said, I also have the August Wrap-Up going up soon after this wrap-up is live, so look forward to that.

Ok, let's get to the books! Without further ado,

let's jump in...

The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo by: Taylor Jenkins-Reid


Ok, so I know this is a book loved by many readers and I can appreciate any book that has LGBT+ representation, but I didn't really connect with this book. It felt as if the author just made her characters LGBT+ and people of color as a way to tackle the issue of lack of representation, without truly delving into issues that actually affect these people in an intersectional and thought-provoking way. Overall, it was an interesting story, but it felt that the characters were diverse, just for the sake of being diverse, rather than to actually add to the plot of the story. This was problematic for me. If Jenkins-Reid would have included more social commentary in her story on topics such as bi-sexual erasure, discrimination of Latinx people, and colorism, just to name a few, I would have been more impressed. I don't even want to get started on the plot-twist.

Talking as Fast as I Can by: Lauren Graham


I really enjoyed listening to Graham on her audiobook, it truly made the experience of reading this autobiography all the better! I love her work and reading about Graham's experiences on some of my favorite shows, such as Gilmore Girls and Parenthood, was incredible to listen to and hear from a behind-the-scenes perspective. If you are a fan of Graham and her personality then you will love this, as much as Lorelai Gilmore loves her coffee! Graham's story was a great distraction from everything going on and definitely felt comforting to listen to throughout my day. If you are looking for a nice light-hearted read, this one's for you!

The Hate U Give by: Angie Thomas


Where to begin with this book, I actually watched the film based on this book first and I really thought it was phenomenal! I actually liked the ending to the film a bit more than I liked the ending of the book, mainly because of the powerful ending of the film and its emphasis on breaking the chain for a better future. But, I do have to say that I did miss the characters that were excluded from the film adaptation! The book gives more in-depth interaction between Star and the people in her life, so I would highly suggest reading the book and watching the movie because both mediums give such an important view of why the Black Lives Matter movement is so important and the power of compliance.

Night by: Elie Wiesel


This account of Wiesel's experiences during the Holocaust broke me and had me distraught thinking about how horrific humanity can be. Wiesel reveals the sad truth of survival and the darkest parts of humanity that we like to ignore. This novel made me question my views on compliance and how powerful of an action it is to be silent when atrocious actions are taking place, even if they benefit you. This account is even more relevant today with our current political climate and the Black Lives Matter movement, if we do not stand up to the oppressors, are we no better than the oppressors themselves? Ask yourself that when you are justifying your own ignorance for selfish reasons. It might be easier now, but the consequences will be far greater.

Sheets by: Brenna Thummler


On a lighter note, I read this super cute read by Thummler that had me all warm and fuzzy throughout reading! This book packs a punch and definitely got me in my feelings in the best way. This would have been a great read to have read in the fall, but I needed the comfort and cute story at the time to distract from the chaos that is life at this moment, so I can't complain! If you want a cute story with friends and caring people at the center of it, this would be a perfect fit for you. Let the cute ghost story distract you from the madness!

And Then There Were None by: Agatha Christie


This mystery novel was wild! If you are a fan of puzzles and problem-solving, this is the book for you. You don't know who to trust and the more you learn about each character, the more you realize that the people who seem the most innocent, are the ones to most question. This story will keep you guessing up until the last page. I would like to thank my friend Jessica for this great recommendation, I'll have to check out more books in the mystery genre category! The only reason this one got 4 stars was mainly that I enjoyed the story, but I wasn't very attached to the characters and only cared about the plot. But, regardless, this was a great read!

One to Watch by: Kate Stayman-London


Let me start with stating that as much as I understand how problematic "The Bachelor" franchise can be, I am still addicted to it like Texans are addicted to their hot sauce, so let's not roast me because I know you're secretly addicted to. But, One to Watch was an incredible reimaging of what the Bachelor franchise could be, if it were actually inclusive to all types of body types and races. When Bea, the protagonist of this story, gets involved with being the leading-lady of the reality show Main Squeeze, she knows she has to let go of her internalized insecurities and take this opportunity to truly give a platform to woman who are on the journey to accept their bodies for what they are, no matter what size they are. And, that my fellow book lovers is the beginning of a great debut for Stayman-London, who I look forward to read more from!

Other Words from Home by: Jasmine Warga


What an inspirational read! I usually do not read middle-grade books, mainly because I have this internal misconception that I don't relate to the problems of the characters as much, because well I am in my twenties, and therefore am a grown-up, with grown-up problems, HA, even I couldn't take me seriously. BUT, this book proved my ignorant mind wrong and made me see that clearly, I wasn't looking at the right middle-grade book before! This book should be enjoyed by any and everyone! This is a story of a young Syrian preteen immigrating from her beloved Syria, to go live with her Uncle's family in the United States. With her mother being her last physical connection to Syria, Jude must navigate this new country with new rules of assimilation that make Jude question how she fits into this new world. This novel made me smile, laugh, think, and even tear-up at moments. Jude's experiences with the collision of her Syrian roots and American culture were eye-opening and powerful! I can't wait for you to see how incredible Jude is and all the star power she radiates.

Weird But Normal by: Mia Mercado


This was such a relatable read! Mercado had equal parts social commentary and humor to tell her life's story of growing up as a biracial kid in the midwest and it was fantastic! From her chapter "Mustache Lady" to a chapter dedicated to the addictiveness that is Target, Mercado's collection of essays is a must-read for anyone who has felt a bit too quirky for the average person. If you want to embrace your inner weird and normalize it in the same swoop, this is the book for you!

I loved the variety of book genres that I read this month and want to include many more genres in my next wrap-up because this was super fun! With that being said, thank you for staying with me and reading my content, you have no idea how much it makes me smile!

Until next time,

❤️️Keep it Authentic❤️️


The song I'm currently listening to wrapping this wrap-up up:

🎵 Angel | Finneas

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