What I’ve Been Recently Reading: August 2022 Edition

I took a little blog break last week, but I of course have been reading offline. Today I’ll be updating you on some of my recent reads, including some summer reads and an especially popular memoir. 

I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy – I had seen Jennette McCurdy’s memoir on a few anticipated books of summer lists, but I finally hit ‘must read’ on my TBR when so, so many rave reviews started flying in. It’s become near impossible to get your hands on a physical copy both online and in-stores, but I was able to grab a digital copy through Libby. I devoured this memoir following Jennette McCurdy’s childhood through her acting career and now – that’s not to suggest though by saying that I ‘flew’ through this book that it was an easy read, as there are warnings for eating disorders, alcohol abuse, relationship abuse. You know that I almost always share star ratings but I won’t be for this book given how personal it is and Jennette McCurdy’s braveness for sharing her story.

The Wedding Season by Katy Birchall – I wish I saw more hype for Katy Birchall’s books because her books are SO worth the hype. I read The Secret Bridesmaid last summer and adored it, so I couldn’t wait to get my hands on The Wedding Season. This British contemporary follows Freya, whose fiancé cancels their wedding the day before. Heartbroken and with a full summer of friends and family members’ weddings ahead of her, Freya’s friends challenge her with new tasks for each event to get her out of her comfort zone and have some fun again. The Wedding Season was so perfectly charming and funny. I loved the cast so much, as Freya’s friends and family really surround her to help her embrace her new phase of life. Highly recommend if you’re looking for a light read! My Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

The Summer Place by Jennifer Weiner – The Summer Place is only my second Jennifer Weiner book – I read Big Summer last year and felt ‘meh’ on it – but this novel definitely had me hooked in a much better way! This large cast novel centers around twenty two year old Ruby’s upcoming wedding to her pandemic boyfriend. Nearly every member of Ruby’s family, including her biological parents, her stepmom, grandmother, and others, have some kind of secret that is about to be revealed as the big day approaches. As someone who has finished all of Elin Hilderbrand’s books (so bittersweet!), I’m always on the hunt for similar books and The Summer Place comes pretty close. While this is a big multi-pot cast, I did enjoy the storytelling – this isn’t a huge action read, but I think readers will enjoy this one if you’re looking for a quiet beach read. My Rating: 4/5 Stars

A Summer Affair by Elin Hilderbrand – A Summer Affair is one of Elin’s more backlist releases and it is the first book in her loosely connected Nantucket three book series (I totally read this trio out of order and it didn’t really affect my reading experience). The book follows a stay-at-home mom and renown glassblower, Claire, who is asked to co-chair Nantucket’s Children Summer Gala …and as a the title suggests, there may or may not be an affair involved. It wouldn’t say A Summer Affair is my favorite Elin book because Claire wasn’t the most likable main character, but it was a solid beach read. My Rating: 4/5 Stars 

The Paper Palace by Miranda Cowley Heller – The Paper Palace was THE book of summer last year, & I finally decided to give into the hype and pick it up. I also think there was a slight Cape Cod/Massachusetts islands inspiration to my reading this month between this book, Elin Hilderbrand, and The Summer Place. I had seen The Paper Palace hyped as a beach read, but don’t take that meaning as a slight and breezy read because this book had some dark and heavy themes. The book transitions between fifty-year old Elle’s twenty four hours at her family’s summer place and her life leading up to the day. It took me about halfway through to get hooked to the story and would recommend this one if you’re in the mood for a darker or serious family drama, again another book was not the most action worthy plot. My Rating: 3.5/5 Stars 

What have you been reading recently? Have you read of the books that I shared? Share in the comments! 

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