20 Books of Summer Quick Update

Blog page

We’re just one month into 20 Books of Summer and I’ve read almost half of the 20. But that’s because I’ve been reading other books that weren’t on my original list. (But, you knew that was going to happen right?)

The other day I read an interesting post about how instead of switching out books from her original 20 Books of Summer list, she “takes a break” and reads something else then returns to her 20 Books of Summer. I’ve looked and looked for that post but can’t find it anywhere! Sorry! Anyway, I thought that was an interesting way of “playing” because I’ve already substituted other books into my 20 Books of Summer Reading. I’m chugging through it so quickly though that I could probably take a break with the ones that aren’t on my original list?

Here’s a look at the books that were on my list and which I’ve now read:

July 2019
  1. The Last List of Judith Kratt: A very successful kick off to my 20 Books of Summer! A great book for summer, I gave it 5-stars!
  2. We Were Killers Once: Another successful read and a great new mystery series for me.
  3. Bethlehem: A good book for the summer actually! A pleasant book to enjoy your patio reading.
  4. East of Eden – really this was the first book I started with – but I’ve been listening to the audiobook (which is fantastic!) but recently I’ve moved over to my paperback copy so I can finish. It’s not finished yet – but it was one on my original list.

The first book I replaced from the original list was, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong. This started a tiny avalanche of sliding off the original list. On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous gave way to reading Dual Citizens by Alix Ohlin and then Provisionally Yours by Antanas Sileika. None of these I reviewed formally, the links are to what I wrote on Goodreads. (In between I also read an Elizabeth George, Playing for the Ashes, but I didn’t mark it down as one of my 20 Books, so hey, looks like I’m following that “break” a little bit. ;-) )

I jumped back into my original list with Summerlings by Lisa Howorth but that seemed to have fallen into feelings like Dual Citizens and Provisionally Yours felt – just okay, not that great, and it made me feel like I was falling back into a slump. None of these books made me feel I wanted to write a full and individual review for, so they are staying as Goodreads reviews only.

This returning feeling of mediocrity in my reading led me astray from my original list once again. I decided on The Custodian of Paradise by Wayne Johnston. This is book #2 in his loose Newfoundland trilogy and focuses on Sheilagh Fielding. I think Fielding is one of the best characters in literature so I’m looking forward to reading all about her.

So there’s my quick update on my 20 Books of Summer so far. I’ve read 8 (Custodian of Paradise being #9 so not counting yet until it’s finished, neither really can East of Eden but I’m very close to finishing that one!)

The next book I plan on cracking open is The Shell Seekers by Rosamunde Pilcher. Jennifer @Booktrovert gave it 5-stars saying it made her have feelings like the ones she had for The Summer Before the War. THAT feeling is what I’m desperately seeking and it’s also on my original list! Win! Win!

The next audiobook I have queued up is Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver. This one will be swapped in for a 20 Books of Summer because it also fits with the Reading Women Challenge and the Reading With Style (Goodreads) Challenge. She narrates this one like she did The Lacuna, and you’ve heard me gush on and on about how much I loved that one so I have high hopes for it, just hopefully not too high because I really want to love it – but it sounds like something I completely will. I also own the hardcover so I can turn to it too if I need to. (Another audiobook aside…I used an Audible credit for Faulkner’s Light in August. It’s a book I own, but Will Patton narrates, and I’ve only read wonderful reviews of his perfectly suited narration for this book. I’m looking forward to listening to that one as much as Prodigal Summer.)

How is your 20 Books of Summer going? Are you participating? If not, how is your summer reading going? Any cracking great reads I should know about?