For once in my life, I actually had a planned TBR for August. With the late-July release of Dark Age, the late August release of Rage, and the early September release of Darkdawn, I had set myself a big list of rereads to prep. And I did….okay. I didn’t anticipate how rereading the Red Rising books would create a burnout, which resulted in my putting off Iron Gold and Dark Age, watching a lot of Netflix instead, and procrastinating on my Nevernight/Godsgrave rereads until after August had ended. I am a little mad at myself for not accomplishing my TBR goals, but I’ll get over it.
Despite my set backs, I actually had a great reading month in terms of awesome books. My average rating for the 14 books I read was 4.7/5, which is my highest of the year so far! I completed 13 books totaling 5422 pages, 1 audiobook for 18 hours, 8 minutes, and knocked a few off my backlist and a few off my NetGalley list! I shouldn’t be mad, because that’s still pretty successful!
Anyway, let’s do a wrap up of everything I read in August!
Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor
18 hours, 8 minutes. 5/5 Stars. Narrated by Khristine Hvam. Reread.
I adore this series so much. Laini is such a vivid and poetic writer, which feeds my visual-reader soul. The final book in the trilogy, we see everything come together and get an ending that satisfies my needs. I have always felt like the book ended in a way that left room for more, and Laini gives us some hints to this in other works. Love, love, love.
The Red Scrolls of Magic by Cassandra Clare & Wesley Chu
350 Pages. 4.5/5 Stars.
It was so nice to step back into the Shadowhunter world again. I often forget how much I love this universe, and always get sucked right in when I visit it again. It took me a little bit to figure out where this falls in the timeline (after book 3 of TMI, just so you know), but once I placed it, everything was smooth sailing.
It definitely makes me want to reread TMI series – something I have been wanting to do for a while. I will forever ship Malec and I’m so excited they get a series of their own! I never finished reading the Magnus Chronicles, and I think I need to get on that ASAP.
Start Here by Trish Doller
352 Pages. 4/5 Stars.
I was provided with an eARC of this book in exchange for a fair review.
I started this book intending to read a little before bed. Fast forward to 1am and I was turning the very last page!! So completely unputdownable. Taylor and Willa were fabulous and layered MCs and their adventure is wonderful.
I didn’t realize that you could sail a whole loop of waterways in the US, and now I want to learn everything I can about that! Its like the Great American Road Trip, but on a boat! I can’t recommend this enough!
Ghosts of the Shadow Market by Cassandra Clare, et all
614 Pages. 4.5/5 Stars.
I don’t think I can ever get enough Jem in my life, so this was a super welcome anthology of stories! It runs the whole Shadowhunters timeline from TID to post-TDA, so I would highly recommend reading this AFTER those series to avoid some pretty major spoilers, and a fair amount of confusion. In particular, there are some huge TDA spoilers.
Provided you are caught up with all the other books, I would say this is a must-read for Shadowhunter fans. I loved peeking in on all of my favorite characters, especially some of the lesser characters that don’t get as much love in the full books! It just solidifies my love for this universe.
The Bone Charmer by Breeana Shields
400 Pages. 5/5 Stars.
The Unicorn Crate pick for the month for May, this book caught me totally by surprise! It was wonderfully written, so so so interesting, and felt unlike anything I have read before. It left me wanting more, and it seems like it’s set up for a sequel, although one hasn’t been announced yet. Told from two POV’s, which are actually the same character in different timelines, I was glued to the pages! I cannot recommend it enough, and encourage everyone to read it so we get that sequel!!
I actually did a full review of this recently, so please check that out! If you’ve read it, I’d love to hear your thoughts over in those comments!
The Beholder by Anna Bright
435 Pages. 5/5 Stars.
Another book that caught me by surprise! It has a little bit of a Cinderella vibe, combined with a heap of The Odessey references, and is packed full of intrigue and FEELS. Oh.my.gods. the feels.
The author did a brilliant job making us fall in love with pretty much every male in this book AND the main character. It had me guessing at every turn and broke so many of the usual patterns that I stopped trying to guess what would happen next. I cried at least six times and ended the book with even more tears. So. Good. I need the sequel NOW.
Red Rising by Pierce Brown
382 Pages. 5/5 Stars. Reread.
In prep to read Dark Age, I knew I needed to do a series reread. I didn’t do so before Iron Gold and I feel like I had to have missed things because of it. I have to say, I had forgotten just how amazing this book is. I had also forgotten so many of the little details, and so it was just wonderful to read it again! I love Darrow, I adore Sevro, and I am enamored of the whole story.
I did a full review of this recently, and would love if you’d check it out! If you’re a fellow Howler, please let me know in the comments of that post!
Golden Son by Pierce Brown
442 Pages. 5/5 Stars.
After finishing Red Rising I would have said that it was my favorite book of the series. And then I finished Golden Son and suddenly I loved that one the best. Can you have more than one favorite in a series? Is every book in this series my favorite?
This book brought us the Iron Rain, which is pretty much the most badass thing ever. We also get oodles of betrayal and deaths and are left off with a horrific cliffhanger than would have KILLED me if I hadn’t read these at a time when the next book was already released. It practically killed me anyway, and I had the next book in hand!
Morning Star by Pierce Brown
524 Pages. 5/5 Stars.
Is every book in this series my favorite? Yes. Yes they are. Thankfully the cliffhanger from Golden Son is resolved right away, but then we just get onto 500 pages of heart-pounding epic madness. I had forgotten so much of the plot (it’s so intricate!) and it caught me by surprise constantly. The ending was as epic as the rest, so bravo to that!
I love every moment of this trilogy reread, but I also ended Morning Star feeling a little bit of a burnout. In an effort to avoid a massive book hangover, I am going to hit Pause on my reread of this series and continue on with something not so heavy!
Roar by Cora Carmack
380 Pages. 5/5 Stars.
In prep for the release of Rage, I knew I needed to do a reread of Roar. I am so glad I did, because I had forgotten how much I loved this story! Aurora is a peach and Locke/Kiran is delightfully broody. SUPER excited that Rage has arrived!
Also, I need to comment on how so many of the books I have read this month feature gorgeous covers. Look at this. It’s STUNNING! I am part of Cora’s Street Team and have gotten to see some of the cover options that weren’t chosen, and I have to say they picked well!! Who isn’t a sucker for a pretty cover?
Rage by Cora Carmack
465 Pages. 5/5 Stars.
SO GOOD! It was awesome to get back to this story after so long away. We got tons of new character focuses, including the Stormlord, and it was so great to get a broader view than we did before. I really adore Locke/Kiran and also found myself warming up to Cassius as the book progressed. The bits about the Stormlord were super riveting and we got so much insight into what makes him tick. I have some guesses as to more of his origin story, and can’t wait to see if I’m right.
Probably my favorite part of this book was getting a whole new ship in the form of Jinx and Nova! I cannot wait to see where that goes in book three! I really loved where the story went in this book, and I need the finale now!
Have a Little Faith in Me by Sonia Hartl
336 Pages. 4/5 Stars.
I was lucky enough to get an eARC of this fun little YA contemporary! The story follows CeCe as she pursues her recent-ex boyfriend to Bible Camp in an effort to win him back. Featuring two of my VERY FAVORITE tropes, pretend dating and besties-to-lovers, this book was very enjoyable and had me chuckling often.
I was a little hesitant going into this, especially since I am decidedly not religious, but enjoyed how it was handled. There was so much girl-power and so many positive messages in this story. It touched upon everything from consent to double standards to body shaming, and did it in a fun and funny way. There were definitely some more mature aspects to this (primarily sex), so know that going in!
Staying for You by Jennifer Van Wyk
294 Pages. 4/5 Stars.
Another eARC, this was a steamy adult romance that had me swooning. It’s been a while since I read anything overtly mature romance themed, so this was a great break. I am a sucker for a great romance, but am often turned off when stories get too smutty (like…do people really talk like that in bed…really?!), but this book never crossed that line! Cami and Owen were total goals, and I loved their story.
I will say this the book did have a bit of an M Night Shyamalan plot twist near the end, which was weird and resulted in the loss of a star in my rating, but the rest of the story made up for that. I would certainly read more from this author.
American Royals by Katharine McGee
448 Pages. 5/5 Stars.
Yet another eARC, I finished this in a single day! It was just so good, I couldn’t put it down! The book follows 4 different POVs and weaves the story together seamlessly. In this universe, the Revolutionary War ended and George Washington became the first Monarch of America, rather than the first President. Fast forward to modern time, and we meet the current ruling family – Princess Beatrice (heir to the throne), Princess Samantha (the spare), and Prince Jefferson (twin to Samantha).
Fans of Gossip Girl, The One, and The Luxe series will loooove this alternate history contemporary. I am so glad this is just the first in a series, because it left off with a HUGE cliffhanger, and I need more!!
How many books did you read in August? What was your favorite? Anything I NEED to add to my TBR?! I am always on the hunt for great books, so drop your suggestions in the comments below!!!