Another month draws to an end. June was actually a rather good reading month quantity wise, but unfortunately there were a few books this month that I was not very fond of.
My first read of the month was Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin. I really liked this book, and I think it was one of my favourite reads of the year so far, so I decided to read City of Shadows by her, and I have to say, I really did not like that book at all! (Review forth-coming). I am hopeful that when the sequel to Mistress of the Art of Death comes out next year it will be comparable to the book that comes before it and not City of Shadows.
I read a few young adult books this month. Rowan of Rin by Emily Rodda was a very cute book, and I would like to read more from this author. Midnight by Erin Hunter, which I read for the What Would Harry Read blog, was an enjoyable book told from the perspective of a cat. I have the next book in the series coming to me soon, so I look forward to checking in with my cats. Enna Burning disappointed me. It was not anywhere near as good as the book that came before it, The Goose Girl. I have the third book here to read, River Secrets, and I am hopeful that it will be back on track! The Dead Girls' Dance (review forth-coming on Twisted Kingdom) was another enjoyable read in Rachel Caine's Morganville Vampires series. I also read Sorcery and Cecelia by Patricia Wrede and Caroline Stevermer. This book, review forth-coming, has been on my wish list forever and I was very disappointed by it.
The rest of the books that I read and was disappointed by are Dawn by Elie Wiesel (review forth-coming). The book was not terrible, but it was nothing like Night. I think because it was a trilogy I thought there was something different to expect. I had high hopes for Carry Me Down by M.J. Hyland, but the main character spent most of the book annoying me. The Ladies Lending Library (review forth-coming) would be an excellent beach read, I can see it being very popular for that sort of thing this summer, but it did not appeal to me. I liked the introduction, had very high hopes for it, but it did not really work for me. I also did not like On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan. That is not a big thing for me, though, he is either an author that I love (Atonement) or I do not really like at all (Amsterdam).
So, people are probably wondering, besides Mistress of the Art of Death and the few young adult books that were all right, did I like anything that I read this month? I did. For all the books that let me down, there were others that gave me hope. Middlesex was a very amazing novel that I think everyone should take the time to read. You should also read The Virgin Suicides by him, that was an amazing book as well. P.S., I Love You was a surprisingly fun read (yet depressing) read. It is not my normal sort of read, but I think that Cecelia Ahern is a good read when you need something light. I actually might see the movie, and I am not big on chick flicks.
Madame Zee by Pearl Luke was an awesome impulse buy. I had never heard of it before, but I saw it at Costco and took a chance on it. Luke does Canadian authors proud! Couldn't Keep it to Myself was a brilliant collection of stories about what it is like to be a woman in the justice system. While it may not represent every woman in jail today, it really opened my eyes. Another good book was Blood of Flowers. It was not my normal historical fiction read, and it was nice to get out of my comfort zone. I am looking forward to another book by her.
For good fantasy this month, I read Rises the Night by Colleen Gleason and Smoke and Mirrors by Neil Gaiman (review forth-coming). Both of them are great authors that I have read before and I know I can count on for good reading. I also read two books by James Rollins this month, which I think people know is one of my favourite authors. He might not be "real literature", but he writes an entertaining story. Deep Fathom and Black Order were both wonderful books from him.
June also saw the death and controversy over the death of wrestler Chris Benoit. I am still baffled by the whole thing because even if I am not a big wrestling fan, I know lots of people that are, so I am actually paying attention to the news to see what they learn. In other non-book news, there were lots of floods in the US and England, so I hope everyone made it out of those instances safe and sound!
In book news, June saw the end of the Once Upon a Time Challenge, my favourite kind of challenge because it was fun, and the Chunkster Challenge, a challenge that showed me that I read more book over 400 pages than I thought. I already posted my concluding thoughts on the Once Upon a Time Challenge, and I finished up the Chunkster Challenge a while ago.