June Reads: Exciting Events

June was a month of travelling. I felt like I spent more time commuting to places than I did sitting down. But whilst I normally sit and read whilst I'm travelling, with Max in tow or when I was driving, those plans were out the window. Instead I decided that I would start going to bed earlier and setting myself a regular lunch during the day so I could focus. 

One highlight of my month was heading to the HarperCollins Big Book 18 event, an event set to show booksellers and influencers what the top upcoming titles are. I've already started reading some of the haul I brought home, and I'm loving some of the stuff out soon!

Watching You - Lisa Jewell

You're back home after working abroad for 4 years, new husband in tow. You're keen to find a place of your own, but for now you're crashing in your brother's spare bedroom. That's when you meet the man next door. He's the head teacher at the local school, twice your age and extraordinarily attractive. You find yourself watching him. All the time. But you never dreamed that your innocent crush might become a deadly obsession. Or that someone is watching you. 

I am a huge fan of Lisa Jewell's books and I tend to share the buying and reading with my mum. They are a perfect blend of family drama and thriller, and keep you hooked on each page. When the lovely bunch over at Penguin Random House offered to send me an ARC of Watching You, I was so excited! Especially as it sounded amazing. And I have to tell you that you won't be able to put it down! The secrets and stories unfold in such a way that you don't want to look away from the page incase you miss something. I can honestly say that I sat up until the middle of the night just to finish it!

Missing Pieces - Laura Pearson

All Linda wants to do is sleep. She won't look at her husband and can't stand her daughter. And she definitely doesn't want this baby. Alienated by their own guilt and struggling to cope, the Sadler family unravel. They grow up and grow apart and never talk about the terrible secret. That is until Linda's daughter becomes pregnant. Before she brings another Sadler into the world, Bea wants to know the truth about her family. 

This is Laura Pearson's debut and honestly you would think that she had been writing for years it's that brilliant. It was raw, original and full of emotion. I was hooked from the first page until the end and wanted to reach through the page and hug them. It was a brilliant and honest look at how loss can hurt and change people, and how guilt can grow and manifest into something no one can comprehend. I loved Bea and how determined she was at making sure she gave her child a good future no matter what. Well written and a great summer read.

Orangeboy - Patrice Lawrence

Not cool enough, not clever enough, the kid that everyone looked through. Not anymore. Not since Mr Orange. 16 year old Marlon has made his mum a promise to never go down the same route as his brother. So far it was easy, but when a date ends in tragedy, Marlon finds himself hunted by both sides of the law. They're after Mr Orange, but what lengths will Marlon take to protect himself and his family. 

A brilliantly strong message and story. One that hit you in the gut and carried on dragging you along for the ride. I can clearly see why it was such an award winner across the board, but for me I think it didn't hit the spot. Whilst I can appreciate that it was a great book, and I loved the character development and the family dynamics, it did feel a tad unrealistic at times (especially some of the later scenes). I loved how fast moving it was and really felt like I was there in the story. I just don't think it was for me!

Bad Nana - Sophy Henn

Jeanie's grandma is bad. Not bad as in vampires or gangsters, she just likes to get up to no good! Sometimes she can be embarrassing and other times lots of fun, especially when she gets Jeanie involved in the mischief. Everyone says she is old enough to know better, but sometimes that's all the more reason to misbehave!

I absolutely loved this book. I love reading kids books as it's such light relief from some of the other stuff I stick my head into. I think I chuckled to myself the whole way through and ended with Max grabbing it from me to read next! I love Bad Nana, she's someone that I think I aspire to be a bit like when I'm her age. I loved the harmless antics that she gets up to to make everyones lives that little bit brighter! I can't wait to grow up disgracefully. It's a must read from me!

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