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Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019

Posted June 30, 2019 by Kait in Bookish Memes, Wrap Up / 12 Comments

Hello everyone and welcome to my Monthly Wrap Up! Today’s post will recap everything that’s happened on and off the blog this month (which is way more than I thought!), highlight any giveaways I’m currently hosting, discuss what I’m reading and watching (currently, as well as what I just finished and what’s up next!), shine a spotlight on some of the books I’ve received and purchased recently, and any other important information I feel like sharing. Okay, time to see what happened this month!

Today’s post will be linked to: The Sunday Post, hosted by Kimberly over at Caffeinated Reviewer; Best of the Bunch, hosted by Jessica at Cocoon of Books; Monthly Wrap Up Round Up, hosted by Nicole at Feed Your Fiction Addiction; Spread the Love, hosted by Tina at As Told By Tina; State of the ARC, hosted by Evelina at Avalinah’s Books; and Stacking the Shelves, hosted by Tynga at Tynga’s Reviews and Marlene at Reading Reality. For more information on any of these memes, click the links next to their names! And now without any further ado:

On the Blog

A lot happened on Kait Plus Books in June! I added a new color to my design scheme, changed the fonts and graphics I use on my posts, published my first bookish quiz, started being a more active member of the bookish community, posted a few reviews, revamped my review format… I feel like there’s more that I’m forgetting. I’m sure it’ll come to me sometime this week and I’ll edit this then, but until I remember, take a look at my posts from June! (Now organized by category!)

Reviews

Blog Tours (Interviews + Guest Posts)

Bookish Memes

Original Posts

Off the Blog

*takes deep breath* I AM NOT ALLOWED TO SIGN UP FOR ANYTHING REQUIRING LONG TERM COMMITMENT. Now if I could just repeat that a few dozen times, maybe it’ll stick in my head and I’ll actually remember it next time. It’s been a long month of forgetting to do things I need to do (like book swaps and getting health insurance and texting my friends), remembering that I need to do them, having panic and anxiety attacks about not having done them yet, calming myself down, forgetting about them again, and just basically repeating that cycle over and over and over. So I am terribly sorry if I haven’t texted, emailed, or written you back this month. (or, you know, longer than this month) I just… can’t. right now. But hopefully I’ll be able to soon. *fingers crossed*

June also means that the Summer Reading Program has started at work! We’ve been crazy busy the past couple weeks, and I know it’s only going to get busier as the summer goes on. I’m currently in the middle of planning a jungle themed escape room for kids, so that’s fun! And slightly overwhelming! I was also excited to find out that I can participate in the Staff SRP this year! YA and Children’s books still don’t count, but the books we recommend don’t have to be books we read this summer. So I’ve got a list of every adult fiction and non-fiction book I’ve read, and it is… eight books long. But I get to participate, so yay! Despite thinking I was going to do it last weekend, I still haven’t signed up for my local library’s SRP yet. Maybe this week. Hopefully.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Truly Madly Royally by Debbie Rigaud
Published by Point on July 30, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 304
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads

Fiercely independent and smart, Zora Emerson wants to change the world. She's excited to be attending a prestigious summer program, even if she feels out of place among her privileged, mostly white classmates. So she's definitely not expecting to feel a connection to Owen, who's an actual prince of an island off the coast of England. But Owen is funny, charming...and undeniably cute. Zora can't ignore the chemistry between them. When Owen invites Zora to be his date at his big brother's big royal wedding, Zora is suddenly thrust into the spotlight, along with her family and friends. Everyone is talking about her, in real life and online, and while Owen is used to the scrutiny, Zora's not sure it's something she can live with. Can she maintain her sense of self while moving between two very different worlds? And can her feelings for Owen survive and thrive in the midst of the crazy? Find out in this charming romantic comedy that's like The Princess Diaries for a new generation.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019The Burning Maze by Rick Riordan
Series: The Trials of Apollo #3
on May 1, 2018
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Mythology
Pages: 448
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Goodreads

The formerly glorious god Apollo, cast down to earth in punishment by Zeus, is now an awkward mortal teenager named Lester Papadopoulos. In order to regain his place on Mount Olympus, Lester must restore five Oracles that have gone dark. But he has to achieve this impossible task without having any godly powers and while being duty-bound to a confounding young daughter of Demeter named Meg. Thanks a lot, Dad.

View Spoiler »

All the books I read in June!

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi
Series: The Pandava Quartet #1
Published by Disney/Rick Riordan Presents on March 27, 2018
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Mythology
Pages: 368
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Goodreads

Twelve-year-old Aru Shah has a tendency to stretch the truth in order to fit in at school. While her classmates are jetting off to family vacations in exotic locales, she'll be spending her autumn break at home, in the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture, waiting for her mom to return from their latest archeological trip. Is it any wonder that Aru makes up stories about being royalty, traveling to Paris, and having a chauffeur?

One day, three schoolmates show up at Aru's doorstep to catch her in a lie. They don't believe her claim that the museum's Lamp of Bharata is cursed, and they dare Aru to prove it. Just a quick light, Aru thinks. Then she can get herself out of this mess and never ever fib again.

But lighting the lamp has dire consequences. She unwittingly frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Her classmates and beloved mother are frozen in time, and it's up to Aru to save them.

The only way to stop the demon is to find the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. But how is one girl in Spider-Man pajamas supposed to do all that?

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Aru Shah and the Song of Death by Roshani Chokshi
Series: The Pandava Quartet #2
Published by Disney/Rick Riordan Presents on April 30, 2019
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Mythology
Pages: 304
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Goodreads

Aru is only just getting the hang of this whole Pandava thing when the Otherworld goes into full panic mode. The god of love's bow and arrow have gone missing, and the thief isn't playing Cupid. Instead, they're turning people into heartless fighting-machine zombies. If that weren't bad enough, somehow Aru gets framed as the thief. If she doesn't find the arrow by the next full moon, she'll be kicked out of the Otherworld. For good.

But, for better or worse, she won't be going it alone.

Along with her soul-sister, Mini, Aru will team up with Brynne, an ultra-strong girl who knows more than she lets on, and Aiden, the boy who lives across the street and is also hiding plenty of secrets. Together they'll battle demons, travel through a glittering and dangerous serpent realm, and discover that their enemy isn't at all who they expected.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019The Tea Dragon Festival by Katie O'Neill
Published by Oni Press on September 17, 2019
Genres: Graphic Novels, LGBTQIA+
Pages: 136
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads

Rinn has grown up with the Tea Dragons that inhabit their village, but stumbling across a real dragon turns out to be a different matter entirely! Aedhan is a young dragon who was appointed to protect the village but fell asleep in the forest eighty years ago. With the aid of Rinn’s adventuring uncle Erik and his partner Hesekiel, they investigate the mystery of his enchanted sleep, but Rinn’s real challenge is to help Aedhan come to terms with feeling that he cannot get back the time he has lost.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Screen Queens by Lori Goldstein
Published by Razorbill on June 11, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 368
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads

This summer Silicon Valley is a girls' club.

Three thousand applicants. An acceptance rate of two percent. A dream internship for the winning team. ValleyStart is the most prestigious high school tech incubator competition in the country. Lucy Katz, Maddie Li, and Delia Meyer have secured their spots. And they've come to win.

Meet the Screen Queens.

Lucy Katz was born and raised in Palo Alto, so tech, well, it runs in her blood. A social butterfly and CEO in-the-making, Lucy is ready to win and party.

East Coast designer, Maddie Li left her home and small business behind for a summer at ValleyStart. Maddie thinks she's only there to bolster her graphic design portfolio, not to make friends.

Delia Meyer taught herself how to code on a hand-me-down computer in her tiny Midwestern town. Now, it's time for the big leagues--ValleyStart--but super shy Delia isn't sure if she can hack it (pun intended).

When the competition kicks off, Lucy, Maddie, and Delia realize just how challenging the next five weeks will be. As if there wasn't enough pressure already, the girls learn that they would be the only all-female team to win ever. Add in one first love, a two-faced mentor, and an ex-boyfriend turned nemesis and things get...complicated.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
Series: The Trials of Apollo #1
on May 3, 2016
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Mythology
Pages: 384
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Goodreads

How do you punish an immortal?

By making him human.

After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus's favour.

But Apollo has many enemies—gods, monsters and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go... an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019The Dark Prophecy by Rick Riordan
Series: The Trials of Apollo #2
on May 2, 2017
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Mythology
Pages: 432
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Goodreads

Zeus has punished his son Apollo--god of the sun, music, archery, poetry, and more--by casting him down to earth in the form of a gawky, acne-covered sixteen-year-old mortal named Lester. The only way Apollo can reclaim his rightful place on Mount Olympus is by restoring several Oracles that have gone dark. What is affecting the Oracles, and how can Apollo/Lester do anything about them without his powers?

After experiencing a series of dangerous--and frankly, humiliating--trials at Camp Half-Blood, Lester must now leave the relative safety of the demigod training ground and embark on a hair-raising journey across North America. Fortunately, what he lacks in godly graces he's gaining in new friendships--with heroes who will be very familiar to fans of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians and Heroes of Olympus series. Come along for what promises to be a harrowing, hilarious, and haiku-filled ride. . . .

And my favorite of the June reads is… drumroll, please….

ARU SHAH! 

I loved the Aru Shah books, and I already can’t wait until the next one comes out!

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019No Place Like Here by Christina June
Published by Blink on May 21, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Retellings
Pages: 272
Format: Kindle
Source: Amazon
Goodreads

Ashlyn Zanotti has big plans for the summer. She’s just spent a year at boarding school and can’t wait to get home. But when Ashlyn’s father is arrested for tax evasion and her mother enters a rehab facility for “exhaustion,” a.k.a. depression, her life is turned upside down.

The cherry on top? Ashlyn’s father sends her to work with a cousin she doesn’t even know at a rustic team-building retreat center in the middle of nowhere. A self-proclaimed “indoor girl,” not even Ash’s habit of leaving breadcrumb quotes—inspirational sayings she scribbles everywhere—can help her cope.

With a dangerously careless camp manager doling out grunt work, an overbearing father trying to control her even from prison, and more than a little boy drama to struggle with, the summer is full of challenges. And Ashlyn must make the toughest decision of her life: keep quiet and follow her dad’s marching orders, or find the courage to finally stand up to her father to have any hope of finding her way back home.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Hello Girls by Brittany Cavallaro, Emily Henry
Published by Katherine Tegen Books on August 6, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Thriller
Pages: 336
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Goodreads

Thelma and Louise gets remade in this powerful, darkly funny teen novel from acclaimed authors Brittany Cavallaro and Emily Henry. Two teenage girls who have had enough of the controlling men in their lives take their rage on the road to make a new life for themselves.

Winona has been starving for life in the seemingly perfect home that she shares with her seemingly perfect father, celebrity weatherman Stormy Olsen. No one knows that he locks the pantry door to control her eating and leaves bruises where no one can see them.

Lucille has been suffocating beneath the needs of her mother and her drug-dealing brother, wondering if there’s more out there for her than disappearing waitress tips and a lifetime of barely getting by.

One harrowing night, Winona and Lucille realize they can’t wait until graduation to start their new lives. They need out. Now. One hour later, they’re armed with a plan that will take them from their small Michigan town to Chicago.

All they need is three grand, fast. And really, a stolen convertible can’t hurt.

Chased by the oppression, toxicity, and powerlessness that has held them down, Winona and Lucille must reclaim their strength if they are going to make their daring escape—and get away with it.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan
Series: Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #1
on October 6, 2015
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Mythology
Pages: 491
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Goodreads

Magnus Chase has seen his share of trouble. Ever since that terrible night two years ago when his mother told him to run, he has lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, staying one step ahead of the police and the truant officers.

One day, Magnus learns that someone else is trying to track him down—his uncle Randolph, a man his mother had always warned him about. When Magnus tries to outmaneuver his uncle, he falls right into his clutches. Randolph starts rambling about Norse history and Magnus's birthright: a weapon that has been lost for thousands of years.

The more Randolph talks, the more puzzle pieces fall into place. Stories about the gods of Asgard, wolves, and Doomsday bubble up from Magnus's memory. But he doesn't have time to consider it all before a fire giant attacks the city, forcing him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents. . . .

Sometimes, the only way to start a new life is to die.

Last month I read 50% ARCs! Which is a lot higher than I thought it would be, so yay! For July I know I’ll be reading at least two ARCs (Truly, Madly, Royally and Hello Girls) and hopefully more! I’m looking forward to seeing my progress on next month’s wrap up!

This post would be forever and a day long if I included every single book I’ve obtained this month, so instead I’m just going to yell about my top three of everything! (Top Three ARCs, Top Three eBooks, etc.)

ARCs

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019SLAY by Brittney Morris
Published by Simon Pulse on September 24, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 336
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads

By day, seventeen-year-old Kiera Johnson is an honors student, a math tutor, and one of the only Black kids at Jefferson Academy. But at home, she joins hundreds of thousands of Black gamers who duel worldwide as Nubian personas in the secret multiplayer online role-playing card game, SLAY. No one knows Kiera is the game developer, not her friends, her family, not even her boyfriend, Malcolm, who believes video games are partially responsible for the "downfall of the Black man."

But when a teen in Kansas City is murdered over a dispute in the SLAY world, news of the game reaches mainstream media, and SLAY is labeled a racist, exclusionist, violent hub for thugs and criminals. Even worse, an anonymous troll infiltrates the game, threatening to sue Kiera for "anti-white discrimination."

Driven to save the only world in which she can be herself, Kiera must preserve her secret identity and harness what it means to be unapologetically Black in a world intimidated by Blackness. But can she protect her game without losing herself in the process?

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019American Royals by Katharine McGee
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers on September 3, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Alternate History
Pages: 448
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads

What if America had a royal family? If you can't get enough of Harry and Meghan or Kate and William, meet American princesses Beatrice and Samantha.

Two princesses vying for the ultimate crown. Two girls vying for the prince's heart. This is the story of the American royals.

When America won the Revolutionary War, its people offered General George Washington a crown. Two and a half centuries later, the House of Washington still sits on the throne. Like most royal families, the Washingtons have an heir and a spare. A future monarch and a backup battery. Each child knows exactly what is expected of them. But these aren't just any royals. They're American. And their country was born of rebellion.

As Princess Beatrice gets closer to becoming America's first queen regnant, the duty she has embraced her entire life suddenly feels stifling. Nobody cares about the spare except when she's breaking the rules, so Princess Samantha doesn't care much about anything, either . . . except the one boy who is distinctly off-limits to her. And then there's Samantha's twin, Prince Jefferson. If he'd been born a generation earlier, he would have stood first in line for the throne, but the new laws of succession make him third. Most of America adores their devastatingly handsome prince . . . but two very different girls are vying to capture his heart.

The duty. The intrigue. The Crown. New York Times bestselling author Katharine McGee imagines an alternate version of the modern world, one where the glittering age of monarchies has not yet faded--and where love is still powerful enough to change the course of history.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Deadly Little Scandals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Series: Debutantes #2
Published by Freeform on November 5, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Mystery
Pages: 352
Format: ARC, eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads

"Think of the White Gloves like the Junior League-by way of Skull and Bones?"

Reluctant debutante Sawyer Taft joined Southern high society for one reason and one reason alone: to identify and locate her biological father. But the answers Sawyer found during her debutante year only left her with more questions and one potentially life-ruining secret. When her cousin Lily ropes her into pledging a mysterious, elite, and all-female secret society called the White Gloves, Sawyer soon discovers that someone in the group's ranks may have the answers she's looking for. Things are looking up... until Sawyer and the White Gloves make a disturbing discover near the family's summer home--and uncover a twisted secret, decades in the making.

No one is quite who they seem to be in this twisty, soapy, gasp-inducing sequel to Jennifer Lynn Barnes' unputdownable Little White Lies.

Kindle

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Technically, You Started It by Lana Wood Johnson
Published by Scholastic Press on June 25, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary, LGBTQIA+, Aspec
Pages: 384
Format: Kindle
Source: Amazon
Goodreads

When a guy named Martin Nathaniel Munroe II texts you, it should be obvious who you're talking to. Except there's two of them (it's a long story), and Haley thinks she's talking to the one she doesn't hate.

A question about a class project rapidly evolves into an all-consuming conversation. Haley finds that Martin is actually willing to listen to her weird facts and unusual obsessions, and Martin feels like Haley is the first person to really see who he is. Haley and Martin might be too awkward to hang out in real life, but over text, they're becoming addicted to each other.

There's just one problem: Haley doesn't know who Martin is. And Martin doesn't know that Haley doesn't know. But they better figure it out fast before their meet-cute becomes an epic meet-disaster . . .

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Once & Future by Amy Rose Capetta, Cori McCarthy
Series: Once & Future #1
Published by Jimmy Patterson on March 26, 2019
Genres: YA, Science Fiction, LGBTQIA+, Retellings
Pages: 368
Format: Kindle
Source: Amazon
Goodreads

I’ve been chased my whole life. As a fugitive refugee in the territory controlled by the tyrannical Mercer corporation, I’ve always had to hide who I am. Until I found Excalibur.

Now I’m done hiding.

My name is Ari Helix. I have a magic sword, a cranky wizard, and a revolution to start.

When Ari crash-lands on Old Earth and pulls a magic sword from its ancient resting place, she is revealed to be the newest reincarnation of King Arthur. Then she meets Merlin, who has aged backward over the centuries into a teenager, and together they must break the curse that keeps Arthur coming back. Their quest? Defeat the cruel, oppressive government and bring peace and equality to all humankind.

No pressure.

Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019Heroine by Mindy McGinnis
Published by Katherine Tegen Books on March 12, 2019
Genres: YA, Contemporary
Pages: 432
Format: Kindle
Source: Amazon
Goodreads

An Amazon Best Book of the Month! A captivating and powerful exploration of the opioid crisis—the deadliest drug epidemic in American history—through the eyes of a college-bound softball star. Edgar Award-winning author Mindy McGinnis delivers a visceral and necessary novel about addiction, family, friendship, and hope.

When a car crash sidelines Mickey just before softball season, she has to find a way to hold on to her spot as the catcher for a team expected to make a historic tournament run. Behind the plate is the only place she’s ever felt comfortable, and the painkillers she’s been prescribed can help her get there.

The pills do more than take away pain; they make her feel good.

With a new circle of friends—fellow injured athletes, others with just time to kill—Mickey finds peaceful acceptance, and people with whom words come easily, even if it is just the pills loosening her tongue.

But as the pressure to be Mickey Catalan heightens, her need increases, and it becomes less about pain and more about want, something that could send her spiraling out of control.

I didn’t get books in any other formats this month, but if I do in the future, this is where they’ll be!

I am currently behind on everything tv! The Bold Type and Jane the Virgin are now both ahead of me. And Big Brother started this week, but I’ve only watched the first episode. I finished On My Block this week, though. That show is SO GOOD! I can’t wait to find out what happens in season 3!

This week the movie theater is bringing back Avengers: Endgame for a few days, so my dad and I are going to spend the day at the movies so we can see Avengers and Spiderman in the same day. I’m super excited!!!

The giveaways widget on my blog is all set up! There aren’t a lot of giveaways that are still happening right now though.

So that’s everything! What have you been up to this month? Anything important happen? Did you have any posts that didn’t get a lot of attention? I’d love to check them out! Let me know in the comments below and don’t forget to have a splendiferous day!

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12 responses to “Monthly Wrap Up | June 2019

  1. I can completely empathise with needing to say no due to being forgetful, Kait. Since starting to go through the menopause, my memory is shocking!
    Our reading choices are completely different but my eldest enjoyed reading Rick Riordan when she was younger.

    I hope you have a great week and enjoy your reads.

    Flora
    Here’s my Sunday Post

  2. I am queen at forgetting to do things and losing things. I actually have a google calendar that I share with my mom, my husband and my sisters just so that I can remember to do things. *spoiler* I still forget. I use these apps called Done, Do. They have a bundle for like $3 a month. It sets reminders and deadlines so I use that, google calendar, a regular planner and bullet journal. I’m still so forgetful.

    I absolutely love the Aru Shah books. (Technically, I’ve only read the first one but I loved it) I’m planning on reading these with my oldest. We started buddy reading books so I think this one I want him to read.

    Thank you so much for linking up to Spread The Love!
    Tina @ As Told By Tina recently posted…Previously On: {{ June 2019 Recap }}My Profile

  3. Danielle Hammelef

    I still need to read The Aru Shah books and have them on my wish list. You are doing awesome at blogging and sharing posts so often. I love the colors of your blog too. We enjoy the summer reading programs at the library. I finished the adult program quickly (they require only 3 books for adults and that’s like 2 weeks for me) and I got to pick a new book as well as a $5 GC to Panera. I hope your July is not as hectic.

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