Book Banter June 2017

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It has been a couple months since I have written a Book Banter post but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been reading! If you want to see what I read in April and May search #bookbanter2017 on instagram and you will find pictures of all the books I have read (or listened to) since January. Tag what you are reading with #bookbanter 2017 too!

I have been on summer break for two weeks and while my schedule has slowed down, my reading life has picked up! I managed to read 12 books in June. Here is the breakdown: 5 were hardbacks/paperbacks, 1 was on my kindle, and 6 were on audio! I have found that audiobooks really suit my summer lifestyle. I can listen while driving. I can listen while picking berries. I can listen while cooking, baking, and cleaning. I can listen while exercising. You guys, this means I can read and do so many other things at the same time! I love it. Be warned, if you are giggling while listening to Emma people might give you funny looks.

Reading (listening) to a ton of audiobooks can get expensive very quickly. That is why I am loving the free app OverDrive. You just need to download the app, add your library card and start putting holds on the audiobooks you want. They also have eBooks , so I get books on my kinlde too. It is the best.

So here is what I read in June:

KINDLE:

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The Kitchen House by Kathleen GrissomThis is a heart-wrenching story about finding  hope in family even in the darkest of times. Historical fiction lovers should totally pick this up, but be warned there is some graphic language and violence.

HARDBACKS/PAPERBACKS:

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame : This delightful tale of friendship has been on my to- read list for twenty years. I read it aloud to my class and the beautiful language had us enchanted.

Dreamland Burning by Jennifer Latham: This is a YA book set in Tulsa, Oklahoma and has two narrators: one from the 1920’s and one in the here and now. This book deals with issues of race and describes the events of a race riot in Tulsa in the twenties. I read it for a book club and it was a quick read that tackled tough topics. Beware of graphic language and violence.

News of the World by Paulette Jiles: I had never given much thought to how people living on the frontier in America after the Civil War would get their news. The main character in this book travels around to read the news and make his living. One day he finds himself with a new mission, delivering a young girl, who had been stolen by a native tribe and then “rescued” years later, to her aunt and uncle. Their adventures and relationship are thought provoking. I wasn’t sure about this book at first, but it keeps creeping into my thoughts long after I put it down.

When Dimple met Rishi by Sandhya Menon: This is light and fluffy summer reading at its finest. Boy + girl + an app creation contest =love. The twist? These two youngsters were arranged to be married by their parents, and only one of them knows that!

Beartown by Fredrik Backman: This is more than a story about Hockey. It is the story of a small town that depends on its hockey team to keep it going. So what happens when the hockey team’s star commits a crime? Backman does a great job exploring this, and many other tough to tackle topics in this book. I grew up in a small town where sports were an important part of the culture so this book really hit home. Warning: sensitive topics are all over this book.

AUDIOBOOKS:

Emma by Jane Austen: I had never read this Austen classic and I am so glad I finally did. You guys, I think I like Mr. Knightley more than Mr. Darcy.  Hoe can that be? This book is funny and witty. I love listening to Austen books on audio because you get all the British accents. So worth it.

What She Knew by Gilly MacMillan: I realized recently that mysteries are what made me a reader. I was hooked on Nancy Drew, Boxcar Children and the Cat Who series when I was younger and my love for mysteries/thrillers continues today. I added this book to my OverDrive list and enjoyed its quick pace. The characters are not the most likable but I think it makes the story better.

The Green Ember by S.D. Smith: You might be thinking, “Do I really need to read an adventure story where the main characters are rabbits?” The answer is yes. This is a children’s book but I love me some kid lit so it was perfect for me. The audiobook is great and I actually sat in my garage to keep listening until my husband came out and see what I was doing. So. Good. When I posted that I had read it on my Instagram (@whitksmith) the author commented on my post and I kind of geeked out. I am totally reading it to my class in the future.

At the Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen:  If you like Gruen’s work and you are going to read this, definitely get the audiobook, Scottish accents ya’ll!

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum: I love this book and movie, even though they are different. I listened to the audiobook narrated by Anne Hathaway and she does an excellent job. I highly recommend it.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen:  After I read Emma and kind of fell for Mr. Knightley I had to go back and make sure I hadn’t just forgotten my love for Mr. Darcy since it had been awhile since I had read P&P. Final verdict: I love them both, but Knightley is winning. Also, in between the contemporary and whimsical reads this summer it has been nice to really settle in with some classics.

I am pretty happy with the books I read in June. My to be read this never gets any shorter so I am always happy when I choose books that are worthwhile for me. I even abandoned two books that just weren’t right for me at this time. I rarely do that because quitting is hard, but I think it worked out for the better.

What have you been reading? Have you read any of the books on my June list? Let me know in the comments!

Until next time,

I love you more than Knightley and Darcy,

Whitney

 

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