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July Monthly Recap


I blinked and now we are moving into August which means it’s time for our July Monthly recap! Find out which books were favorites and which were duds. We’ll end our wrap up with a a list of books due out in August and a glimpse of our upcoming content. We also want to hear from you so let us know what you read this month and what you look forward to reading next month.

Jen: Two months ago we mentioned an informal challenge to “read different.” You can read about that challenge here. Hopefully more of you join us! I didn’t do too well for my #readdifferent challenge goals in terms of author diversity since most of the books I read were written by men. I read 11 books this month. Only three were books written by women. I read one book by an African American author (Between the World and Me), one by a Spanish poet (Selected works by Federico Lorca), one by a Chinese author (The Crab-Flower Club by Cao Xueqin, one by a Japanese author (Virus by Komatsu), and one written by a South Korean author (the Interpreter by Suki Kim).  The latter two books were translated works while I read Federico Lorca’s book of Selected Poetry in its original Spanish. None featured any LBGTQ characters and none featured any disabled characters.

Favorite book read in July: I enjoyed most of the books I read in July. My favorite book this month was The Interpreter by Kim (review coming up next month). Honorable mentions go to Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisis Coates and Selected Poetry by Federico Lorca.

Least favorite book read in July: I liked all the books I read this month. Perhaps my least favorite was a middle grade book but since I’m not the target audience, and was reading it in order to put it out in my little free library, I’ll avoid mentioning it’s title here.

Future Goals: Man Booker Longlist books! I haven’t read any on the list. So all of August will be filled with reading the 2016 Man Booker longlist books for our shadow panel. You can read which books those are here.

Book Worm: 

Favorite book read in July: My favourite July book was A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding by Jackie Copleton. Honourable mentions go to my guilty pleasures read Nashville by Heart by Tina Ann Forkner and The Trouble with Goats and Sheep by Joanna Cannon. Like Jen, I had a good month for books and there were no books that rated less that 3 stars.

Least favorite book read in July: Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler. I felt there was a lot of potential book in this book but it failed to deliver.

Future Goals: Like Jen, I will be aiming to read the entire Man Booker longlist of books so that will really knock out any other reading goals for the next 2 months. It is probably just as well since I have been doing really badly with clearing my TBR. This month I have managed 1/4 of a book off of my TBR when I had aimed to read 3. **big sigh** such is life.

What can you look forward to on our blog in August? The month of August will be mostly dedicated to reading and reviewing the 2016 Man Booker longlist books. Our panel of 5 judges (including Book Worm and I) will be making our way through the longlist and reviewing all the books. We’ll also likely post a few of other other regular features such as Terrible Reviews of Great Books and perhaps a Read Around the World if we can fit it. We’ll also be participating in a blog tour this month so look our for that at the beginning of August.

We will also continuing with our summer reading challenge, a fun team challenge based on the 2016 Olympics. We have 5 teams participating and read more about it here. Teams are selection some really interesting books for their category and country selections.

August 2016 book releases. September will be a huge month for book releases for books I personally want to read. August will bring fewer releases that are really exciting (to me), many of them US releases of books that are already out in the UK. Here are a few of the August releases: 
To the Bright Edge of the World by Eowyn Ivey. Release date: August 2
The Cauliflower by Nicola Barker. US release date: August 6
The Glorious Heresies by Lisa McInerney. US release date: August 9
The Last Days of New Paris by China Mieville. Release date: August 9
The Nix by Nathan Hill. Release date: August 30. This is the one book on the list that I am really looking forward to reading. I also met the author at BEA and it was my favorite author interaction.
A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir (for all you YA fans): Release date: August 30

We want to hear from you. So what are your plans for August? Which books were your favorites and least favorites in July? Those participating in the Read Different Challenge – What books did you read this month and how did they represent your read different goals?

7 Comments Post a comment
  1. Sorry to hear you didn’t like Vinegar Girl, I was thinking about reading that one. I also read Dictionary of Mutual Understanding this month, it was really good. I’m curious about the author’s background now.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 31, 2016
  2. Great book recap. I barely read this month – unless you count reading for prelims. Come visit my blog today, I haven’t seen you around in a while!

    Liked by 1 person

    July 31, 2016
    • For some reason I wasn’t getting your posts. I was following but now not anymore- when I just checked. Weird. I find that every so often WordPress bumps me off someone’s blog that I had followed. I’ll go back in and fix when I get home.


      July 31, 2016
  3. Between the World and Me was my outstanding book of the month, too. I also really enjoyed The Portable Veblen. I had one total horror of a book, and another that was underwhelming, but otherwise a good month. Half my books were by women, none of whom I’d read before. Half were various kinds of diverse, as well. I’ve made a start on books for the Olympic Challenge, and I’m hoping that I’ll cut a few from my TBR as a result of the challenge. I have a fair few bookmarked to borrow from the library, most of which I would never have thought of reading before I started the challenge. I’m excited about that!

    Liked by 2 people

    August 1, 2016
    • Great! Can’t wait to see what you have picked out for the challenge!


      August 1, 2016
  4. Tracy S #

    I only read 12 books this month, but 3 of them were over 500 pages, so I guess that evens it out a bit. Of those 12, nine could be considered diverse. My favorite by far was Barkskins by Annie Proulx. My least favorite was Moxyland by Laren Beukes. Goals for next month include diverse reading, as well as getting the Olympic challenge books read. Hopefully, I’ll be able to read and watch the games!

    Liked by 1 person

    August 3, 2016
  5. JoLene R #

    I read 9 books last month: 5 were from my TBR, 5 were by women. 2 took place outside of US/UK –> actually one was about the history of civilization so it took place everywhere ;-). 1 was by an author of color

    The most important book was Between the World and Me. I enjoyed the writing but was slightly uncomfortable with the subject matter. To add emphasis, while reading it, 2 more unarmed black men were shot by police. I have probably thought about this book every day since I listened to it and I have gone back to buy a book to have (I listened to the audio).

    In terms of fiction, I really liked The Crown by Nancy Bilyeau. This was a hit from a couple of years ago and I’m glad that i finally got around to reading it.

    Next month, I’ll be working through my Olympic books so there should be some diversity there 😀


    August 5, 2016

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