June and July Recap

Bear with me, because this is going to be a long post. At the end of the last month I was still on holiday, so instead of posting my June recap late I decided to combine June and July into one post.

When you add the two months together I was very very busy. I got a lot of reading done but not as much blogging as I’d hoped, and I was travelling much more than I’d planned to be but my writing seemed to fall into a black hole as a result.

Monthly Recaps - This Month

Books I Read

June and July Recap (1)

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman – Four stars

Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young – Four stars

Gilded Cage by Vic James – Four stars
Check out my review here.

Tarnished City by Vic James – Five stars
Check out my review here.

Bright Ruin by Vic James – Five stars
Check out my review here.

Scythe by Neal Shusterman – Four stars

Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman – Five stars

Save the Date by Morgan Matson – Five stars

Always Never Yours by  Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka – Four stars
Check out my review here.

Autoboyography by Christina Lauren – Five stars
Check out my review here.

Caraval by Stephanie Garber – Five stars
Check out my review here.

Legendary by Stephanie Garber – Five stars
Check out my review here.

Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde – Four stars
Check out my review here.

The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo – Three stars

Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson – Five stars

I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo – Two stars

My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton and Jodi Meadows – Four stars
Check out my review here.

My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton and Jodi Meadows – Three stars

LifeL1K3 by Jay Kristoff – Five stars

Bright We Burn by Kiersten White – Five stars

A Thousand Beginnings and Endings by Ellen Oh – Four stars

Lucky in Love by Kasie West – Two stars

Love, Life, and the List by Kasie West – Four stars

Listen to Your Heart by Kasie West – Four stars

June and July This Month

I’m finally ahead on my Goodreads Reading Challenge, but when you take into account how many books I read in June (sixteen of the twenty-four listed above) that’s not a surprise. When it comes to reading I am a machine when I’m lazing around on beach holidays.

June and July GR 2018 Reading Challenge

The best book I picked up in June was Bright Ruin, and in July Bright We Burn. Both of these were endings to favourite series of mine, and both exceeded my expectations. There was a lot to wrap up in both of these books, but Vic James and Kiersten White both wrote brilliant stories that kept me on the edge of my seat until the last page.

June and July Best

The worst book I picked up in June was I Believe in a Thing Called Love, and in July Lucky in Love. I go into more detail in my reviews for each (which I hope to post soon) but my issues with both of these books were with the main character, and because I Believe in a Thing Called Love and Lucky in Love were told in first person POV it was hard to look past that to enjoy the rest of the story.

June and July Worst


I mentioned at the beginning of this recap that my writing fell into a black hole these past two months and wow did it ever. In May I set myself a goal to write 25K words a month, thinking after taking part in last years’ NaNo that would be easy, but it turned out to be anything but. I even tried taking part in Camp NaNo in July but at the end of the month I didn’t get any writing done.

Camp NaNoWriMo

One of my problems is I impulsively edit as I go along; I can never just sit down, write a draft, and stick with one idea from beginning to end. While taking part in Camp NaNo I came up with a new idea for where I wanted my WIP to go which meant I had to dump everything I’d written before (about 5K words) to make it work.

So I’ve come with a new plan, one I am 100% determined to stick to. For the next three months I’m going to carefully plan my current WIP so when it comes to NaNoWriMo this November I can start writing it and hopefully not be lured by the siren call of the new ideas that pop into my head.

Life in General

It was my birthday in June so there was a lot of celebrating and a lot of yummy food. One evening I went out for Japanese with my family, and another day went to the House of MinaLima – which is four floors full of Harry Potter art from the movies – with one of my friends.

June and July Recap (2)

Later we went and got Bubblewraps; I had strawberry shortcake ice cream with Oreos and white chocolate sauce, and my friend had matcha ice cream with hazelnuts. Both were very yummy.

June and July Recap (3)

The rest of both June and July were taken up by my holidays. For ten days at the end of June/beginning of July I was in Dubai and Mauritius with my sister; we spent five nights in Dubai before flying down to Mauritius. It was the holiday of a lifetime, and both countries were incredible in very different ways.

June and July Recap (4)

I also went on a very unexpected holiday to Croatia. My sister had booked this but when her original plans fell through she asked if I wanted to go with her instead. Croatia has always been somewhere I’ve wanted to visit, mainly because it looks like a beyond beautiful country, so I jumped at the chance.

June and July Recap (5)

Monthly Recaps - Book Haul

I did a lot of book shopping in June/July, but I will be cutting back in August and a fair few of the books below were birthday presents so I don’t feel so bad about how much money I spent.

June and July Recap (6)


June and July Recap (7)

Fairy Loot

June and July Recap (8)

Monthly Recaps - Last Month

I have absolutely zero plans for August at the moment, both in terms of what I’ll be reading and what I’ll be doing. I can’t even say there are any new book releases I’m super excited for, although my copy of The Girl in the Tower will be arriving at the beginning of August so I’ll likely try and read that before the month is over.

The Girl in the Tower

Other than that maybe I’ll get some more re-reading done, or pick up some books that have been on my TBR list for ages that I still haven’t gotten around to. Who knows? I’ll very much be taking August as it comes.

I hope everyone else had a good June and July, and I hope you all have an even better August as well.

How have the past two months been for everyone? Did you have any epic trips you went on, or are your summer holidays still to come? Are there any books being released in August that you’re excited for, or will you been going back to old favourites like I likely will? Let me know.

Happy reading!


54 thoughts on “June and July Recap

  1. Oh my goodness, your summer sounds amazing so far! And you’ve read so many books — that is really impressive 😊 I read I Believe in a Thing Called Love last year, and though it was cliche and shallow, I did find it a great book to read when I was stressed with school assignments and exams (it wasn’t a book that required much thinking, honestly). I’m curious to read more about your thoughts if you write a review for it soon! I’m super excited to read about your travels as well! I hope you have an amazing rest of your August 😄

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Zoie, and yeah this has been one of the best summers I think I’ve ever had. I think for me it was the main character, so many of her actions I couldn’t get behind and it ruined the story for me. I suppose as far as a light read it’s a good pick and I’ll hopefully be posting my review soon-ish.
      Thanks so much, I hope you have a great August too. 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Your pictures look lovely and that’s so cool you got to travel to some really fab places!! And your reading hauls for the months look amazing. I received My Plain Jane in an OwlCrate and am looking forward to reading that (I also want to reread Jane Eyre now though lol, I love it). I’m about to go to Portland Oregon for a week and a half and I’m so excited (and I’ll get to spend at least a day in Seattle ❤ ). Can't wait to hear more about your trips if you were thinking of sharing. And dear sweet goodness, those bubblewrap ice creams look SO DELICIOUS.

    I have the same habit of too much editing/idea generating/not enough writing when I work on a project and I'm going to try really hard to break that this month. I've been inspired I think with what I've been able to produce for my blog these past couple of months, and with the books I've been reading lately, so I think I'm finally ready to dive back into writing. I like your plan for preparing for NaNo this year and am sending you good writerly vibes!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much. 🙂 Yeah I got to see some amazing places over the past two months, and it was more travelling than I’ve done before over that short a space of time. 🙂
      I hope you enjoy My Plain Jane then, oh it must have been a nice surprise in your Owl Crate box, I got my copy of My Lady Jane from an Owl Crate box back when I was still subscribed.
      It’s a hard habit to break though, I feel like as you write it’s instinct to go back and re-check your work, and also as you write you just come up with new ideas, new shots of inspiration. Thanks so much, I’m definitely going to need those good writerly vibes. I’ll send some your way too! 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. So happy to see you’ve had such full, exciting months, Beth! Your holidays sound spectacular and it’s so cool that you got to visit so many wonderful places with your sister 🙂
    I also love your book list for June/July – I’ve been meaning to read so many of those! I’m also glad to learn Vic James and Kristen White’s series are now over so I can read them without having to wait for the sequels to be out!
    Overall, really glad to have read such a wonderful post, Beth, and glad to have you back after such a busy month 🙂 I know I’ve been too so I’m hoping we both get some free time/rest to blog more often!
    Have a lovely August, hon! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh it was amazing, busier than I think any month has ever been before but a good busy. 🙂 Yep the holidays were amazing, and I’ll posting a little more about them as well if you’re interested.
      Oh I hope you love Vic James’s and Kiersten White’s series, honestly there amazing and yes you’ll be able to jump straight from one book into the next that way won’t you! 😀
      Thanks so much Sophie. 🙂 ❤ Hopefully the busy period is out of the way for both of us know so there's more time for blogging. Thanks again, and I hope you have a brilliant August too. 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It looks like you did a lot of fun things in the last two months (and read a lot of books!!) Awe you didn’t like IBIATCL :(( I found it cute and funny. Can’t wait to read your review on it to see more of your thoughts. THAT ICE CREAM LOOKS SO DELICIOUS OHMYGODDDD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah it’s been an action-packed summer that’s for sure, but it was so much fun as well. 🙂 I hoped I would like it better but I think it just wasn’t for me in the end (a shame because I’d heard a lot of good things about Maurene Goo’s books.
      It really was delicious, my aim is to go back one day and try more! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow, it sounds like you’ve been having such a great summer, Beth, it makes me so happy ❤ Those pictures of your travels look amazing, I hope you'll talk more about them eventually on your blog, would love to hear more about it 😀
    I found out about Bubblewraps in London a couple months ago and ever since I've been dreaming of going, hopefully I'll get to do so next time I'm in the city, I can't wait – these look SO yummy!
    I'm so happy you got Grace & Fury, I'm really impatient to read that one, can't wait to hear your thoughts about it 🙂
    I hope you'll have a brilliant August! ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah it’s been amazing (best summer in a while I can say that for sure!) and I’ll be posting about my holidays very soon, complete with plenty more pictures too. 😀
      Oh any excuse for you to come to London again is welcome. ❤️ Plus they tasted even better than the pictures make them look (and one day I’ll go back for more, there are so many flavour combinations so there’s much more to experience for sure!)
      I’ll let you know what I think then, but I can’t guarantee when I’ll be able to get around to it I’m afraid, too much on my TBR list and too little time.
      Thanks Marie, I hope you have an incredible August as well. 🙂 ❤️ ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Ah, love for Gilded Cage! I went to YALC last weekend and queued for an hour just so I could gush all over Vic James…and I just stood there and blabbed nonsense about how much I love her books! I’m off to read your reviews 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh I didn’t make it to YALC this year but I would have queued for an hour just to do the same! She’s written one of my favourite dystopian series (and I don’t read a lot of dystopian so that’s saying something!) so I hope I get a chance to meet her one day. 🙂


    1. They are so good, and they taste better than they look in pictures as well. 🙂
      Yeah I’d say this is one of the best summers I’ve had, and I spent a fair bit of time on my holidays sunbathing by the pool or on the beach so I just read at the same time. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh that’s a shame about Tarnished City, I actually ended up enjoying that one more than the first book. Either way Bright Ruin is my favourite of the trilogy so maybe it will be yours too, or at the very least you’ll like it more than you did book two! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hello Beth ❤
    Glad to hear about your past few months! Sounds like you had quite the adventure! That's amazing that you managed to read so many books, and I am glad to see that you enjoyed them overall.
    I know what you mean when we get a new idea and it derails our entire story! This happens to me at least once each novel (except for the current one, hopefully because I've outlined, fingers crossed.) Usually I make a few notes in previous parts of the story that needs to be changed then keep on writing on based on this new story idea. Then, after it is all over I go back and rewrite what needs to be rewritten. In my most recent WIP, I went back to rewrite the first 1/3 of the story after I finished writing until the end haha. I find that this helps me make progress despite all the new ideas bouncing around in my head 🙂
    The House of MinaLima sounds amazing!!! I wish there were such a place here in Vancouver haha 🙂 I'm glad to see your pictures from Dubai and that's awesome that you got to go on an impromptu trip to Croatia!
    Are those new editions of HP?! I don't think I've seen them before! Does this mean that you will be rereading this series soon?!
    Have a wonderful August ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey, and yes June and July were pretty much an epic adventure, I feel like I’m all travelled out for the year. 🙂 Oh I had plenty of opportunity to read, most of my holidays were spent by the pool or beach so I was reading while sunbathing.
      It seems to happen to me every time I sit down to even try and write, but I’ve got to put a stop to it because if not I’ll never write anything. It’s why I’ve put the outline plan I have in place. See I may use that idea, at the moment my aim to have a notebook while I work so I can scribble down any ideas I come up with to get then out my head so they won’t distract me with ‘what ifs’ while I’m working on my WIP.
      Well if you ever come to England you’ll have to go to the House of MinaLima to make up for it, and I should be posting soon about my holidays so you’ll be able to hear all about them. 🙂
      Yeah, it’s to celebrate the 20th anniversary of each book publication, so I’m assuming next year there’ll be a Prisoner of Azkaban one.
      Thanks Sophie, I hope you have a great August too. 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Reading by the beach is such a dream ❤ Glad that you had a lot of chances to do this while you were on vacay 🙂
        Having a notebook to write down your ideas sounds like a good idea. Let me know how it works out! When I want to get out of "internal editor mode", I also like to do word sprints where I set a timer for 10 minutes and focus on writing as many words as possible (no editing allowed) which helps 🙂
        I'll have to remember the House of MinaLima for when I visit England 🙂 Looking forward to your photos ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Definitely, it’s a must for me when I have beach holidays. I need my Kindle and I need plenty of good books.
        I definitely will, I’m hoping it will be what I need to actually get me to stick to one plan for this WIP, if not I’ll never finish it.
        Thanks Sophie! 😀 ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I went to Europe in June and it was amazing! I wish I had the chance to go to Croatia! I’m glad you had fun! And wow you read a lot! The only one I read from your list is Caraval which was ehh and Second Chance Summer which I love! I can’t wait to try the Conqueror’s Saga! I hope you have a relaxing month in August!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh where in Europe did you go? I’m sure it must have been an amazing holiday wherever you ended up but Croatia is incredible, so if you get a chance definitely go.
      Busy month in terms of reading and travelling. 🙂 And yeah as much as I loved Caraval I’m aware there are more mixed reviews than not, but hopefully you’ll enjoy Legendary more, and I’m sure you’ll love the Conqueror’s Saga too.
      Thanks so much, I hope you have a good August as well. 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I went to Paris, Barcelona, Napoli, Roma, Florence, and Zurich! It was so fun! I really want to go back! It was absolutely amazing and I miss it so much! I will definitely try to make a trip to Croatia.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Paris was amazing but since I went to Roma as a destination on a cruise, I didn’t get to explore much. I want to give it another chance! I also have Portugal on my list (mostly because I want to see one of my best bookish friends) and Greece!

      Liked by 2 people

  9. What a great two months! And already over 70 books into the year, wow!! You had quite a few high starred reads this time, looks like you’ve had a good streak (well, except for those two YA contemporaries). I’ve been considering starting The Conquerers Saga, everyone says it’s great and it’s good to see you enjoyed book three so much.
    Also, I have no idea what a bubble wrap is but by gosh, I want one.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah I made my goal higher this year than it’s ever been before so I need to get as much read as I possibly can, and I’m determined to stick to it too. 🙂 I’m hoping that streak continues (and yeah those two were the exception but you can’t have it all right?)
      The Conqueror’s Saga is well worth reading, especially now all the books are released because you won’t have to live with any of the cliffhangers.
      Bubblewraps are amazing, and they taste even better than the picture looks! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve done same, go for gold! I’m sure you’ll get there.
        I love it when you don’t have to wait in between books. Cliffhangers are great when you have the next book to go straight on to. 😊
        Yum! I’ll have to track one down and try it. 🤤

        Liked by 1 person

  10. It looks like you had an incredible two months! A vacation is always needed, and that ice cream looks delicious, I’ve never seen anything like it before. I hope August treats you well and you have another amazing reading month. Good luck with your writing and meeting all your goals, you can do it!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes and this holiday was very very much needed, I came back feeling relaxed and just better all in all. 🙂 Ice cream is always delicious but these were better than just normal ice cream I’ll admit. Thanks so much Libby, I hope you have an incredible August and meet your goals for the month as well. 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Wow! Look at you go Beth! Your holidays sound very relaxing! Also happy belated birthday! I hope you had a fantastic birthday! 😀 That bubblewrap ice cream snack looks amazing! 😀
    I’m like you, I have no current plans for August. I’m hoping to do a lot, but after doing too much in July (then getting sick) and I think I should take August a bit slower!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Very relaxing, and very much needed as well. I don’t have much else planned for the rest of year but for once I’m kind of OK with that. Thanks, and yes the bubblewrap ice cream was incredible, it tasted better than it looked I’ll say! 😀
      Sounds like a good plan (and I hope you’re feeling a little better now as well) best not to try too much and make yourself ill again right? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well you’ve been on quite a very adventures this year! It’s time to start planning for next year! 😀
        To be honest bubblewrap ice cream still sounds like something I would eat, even if I didn’t see the picture!
        I am, thank you. It took some time, but I’m back up and running! Yes, so I’m just going to take it easy! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Definitely, and that’s my plan for the rest of the year too, relaxing and planning next years adventures! 🙂
        I feel like all you have to really say is ‘ice cream’ and most people feel the same way.
        Oh that’s good to hear, and yes definitely take it easy. 🙂 ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

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