Monthly Wrap-Up | July 2019

And the year just continues to fly by. I’d be lying if I said I’m 100% sad about August’s speedy arrival because I’m [f]all about what comes after it (September), but I won’t get into that now.

Instead I’m looking back on my reading, blogging, and miscellany during the month of July. I’ve been in a strange reading place this summer, as I feel like I’ve read so much more than I actually have. I’m chalking it up to reading [too] many books at once – a habit of mine that has really intensified over the past couple of months. Nonetheless, I really enjoyed the books I read this month and am happy with what I managed to write here on the blog. So let’s get into it.

p.s.
asterisks* denote books on my #20booksofsummer reading list

July 2019 Wrap-Up Instagram Collage

Books I Read

  1. The Lake* by Banana Yoshimoto and translated by Michael Emmerich – I recently picked this book up from a local bookstore because I had not heard of the author (she’s written essays and many novels), and The Lake sounded like a perfect summery title. The book itself isn’t summery, but look at the cover design! Anyway, this novel features two protagonists, and Banana Yoshimoto writes their interactions and characteristics plainly but so descriptively – they were my favorite part of the story. After reading I found out that the story features elements loosely based on the Aum Shinrikyo cult, which puts a darker twist on the already mysterious plot. I recommend it if you’re looking for a novel that is both realistic and a little ethereal, and is well-paced but full of substance.
  2. Northanger Abbey* by Jane Austen – This was the latest An Historian Reads Book Club pick, and a re-read for me. I talked about falling even deeper in love with this book in a bookstagram post, and it has really put me in the mood for Gothic literature…Ann Radcliffe might have to join the other books on my unofficial August TBR.
  3. The Eyes of the Dragon* by Stephen King – I’m pretty sure this was the first Stephen King book I ever read (or was it The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon – I read them around the same time so my memory is a little fuzzy), and that was a long time ago (12 years ago maybe?). I remembered the basic plot points and that I enjoyed the book, but what I didn’t remember was the narrative style. Even if fantasy isn’t a genre you automatically reach for, I think the fairy tale-esque way Stephen King wrote the story has a homey, story-told-over-generations sort of feel. It’s quite appealing – as is the story itself. And if you haven’t encountered this SK title and are wondering: this novel isn’t horrific like It or Misery or even The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon. The elements of terror, danger, and anticipation are like that of a fantasy novel or fantastical thriller.
  4. Augustown by Kei Miller – Kei Miller is one of my new (to me) favorite authors. This book has everything that makes [most] Classic literature so timeless and enjoyable: both poetic and straightforward writing, unforgettable plot and characters, themes and messages that provide lessons and criticism; if you haven’t read this book please do. And if you have any recommendations for which book, poem, or essay by Kei Miller I should pick up next, please let me know in a comment below.

Currently Reading

All library books, and all books I’m hoping to finish this weekend or by the end of next week – mostly because I really need to return them to the library. 😬

  1. Tinderbox: The Untold Story of The Up Stairs Lounge Fire and the Rise of Gay Liberation by Robert W. Fieseler – Any tips on how to read non-fiction more quickly? I could use them.
  2. Ever Alice* by Gregory Maguire – This book is written uniquely. I’m in between being into the writing style and thinking it’s excessively pretentious. I am aware that my vocabulary could use some improvement, but MY WORD I’m considering adding the dictionary to my reading journal because of how much I’ve consulted it.
  3. Nyxia (The Nyxia Triad #1)* by Scott Reintgen – I’m not very far along in this book, but I’m enjoying it.

In Other News…

I was able to maintain a more consistent posting schedule this month – more consistent than ever, I think. Of course, I’m going to try to maintain this in August, so look for a Grimm post every Sunday (or at least on two out of the four Sundays), and other content on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

I’ve been posting a little less frequently on Instagram, which is more due to having a busy summer than not wanting to post. I have made more time for interacting with other bloggers and bookstagrammers, so Instagram has still been a fulfilling part of my presence here on the internet. Have I finally struck a good balance? It’s probably too early to tell. 😉

How did August treat you? Do you have any book recommendations from the month, or disappointments you feel like talking about? Share your thoughts in a comment – I’d love to chat.

See you in 2020, July,

Kelsey

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