June Library Book Haul Wrap-Up

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I’m back for another Library Book Haul Wrap-up. I got through all four books this time around. Some were great, others not so much. Here’s a summary of my thoughts, for full reviews click the links.

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Watch Us Rise (Book Review)

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I don’t understand why more people aren’t talking about this book. Watch Us Rise was published on February 12th, 2019 and thankfully, my library had a copy.

This is the final book of my June Library Book Haul. I actually read all four this time. It’s been a pretty good reading month and I’m excited for the Wrap-up next week. I’ll also have to bring these beauties back to the library, but at least they’ll get to be loved by someone else.

I’ll be using the same reviewing style I did for Love, Hate, & Other Filters so please let me know if you like it, or if you’d rather I go back to my old ways.

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Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda (Book Review)

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The fact that I haven’t read this book by now is honestly kind of strange. But, it seems quite fitting that I’m reading it during Pride Month. The last book I read with an LGBTQ+ main character was The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue and I loved it. Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda was the second book I picked up during last month’s trip to the library.

Fun fact: I love red book covers.
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The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue (Book Review)

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*Synopsis*

The year is seventeen hundred and something and Monty is on his way to Paris with his beloved best friend, Percy, and his annoying younger sister, Felicity. He is supposed to go on a year long tour of the continent before coming back home to run his father’s estate. Felicity will be dropped off at finishing school on their way back and Percy will be going off to law school upon their return.

Monty’s reputation as a gambler, drunkard and hedonist precede him. This is his last chance to get into his father’s good graces. All the while, Monty must suppress his true feelings for Percy at all costs and be on his best behavior throughout the trip. Well, if that actually happened, we wouldn’t have this novel.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is definitely something to look out for at your local bookstores.

*Review*

I listened to the audiobook of The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue. It was my first read of Booktubeathon and a great way to start the week. I listened to this at 1.25 speed at the beginning then switched over to 1.5 speed as it is a long book and the 1.0 speed is just way too slow for me.

This was an excellent show of diversity. This is the first book I’ve read with an LGBT main character. I am very particular about historical fiction, especially those set in Europe but I was absolutely blown away by this one. A European historical fiction with one of the main characters being dark skinned is incredibly uncommon. Gender roles are discussed heavily in a natural way. It’s so well formatted and the humor is wonderful. The plot just kept getting thicker and thicker.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue has quite the colorful cast of characters. A bear leader, “pirates,” French noblemen, and alchemists are just a few of the kinds of people to be found in this story. Monty, Percy, and Felicity had the best group character development that I’ve seen in a while. The way their relationships with one another evolved were incredibly well done. Family, friendship, and love are central to the novel.

This is a definite 5/5 stars. It very well may have been the best book I’ve read this year.

*Spoilers*

I was shipping Percy and Montague so hard throughout the novel. Their relationship was so complicated and beautiful and I just wanted them to live happily ever after together. That night Felicity told Monty about the way Percy looked at him, I just knew the truth would come out soon enough.

The Sun is Also a Star (Book Review)

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*Synopsis*

Daniel is a first-generation Korean-American. His parents are doing all they can in hopes of providing him and his brother Charlie with a better life. Daniel has an interview that could determine the course of his future. Getting into Yale is the first step to becoming a doctor, the profession his parents long for him to pursue.

Natasha is being deported today. Her father’s mistake has caused her undocumented family to be discovered. In the midst of packing, Natasha leaves to try to right her father’s wrong one last time. She is on a mission to preserve the life she lives.

Chance or fate or sheer determinism bring Daniel and Natasha together on this pivotal day.

*Review*

I read this as an audiobook. I loved the voices of Natasha and Daniel, this flowed really well as an audiobook. I used the Overdrive app to borrow this audiobook from my library. It was great for cleaning my room and twisting up my hair since my hands were full.

Life is complex and this book does a great job of displaying the complexity. The story is centered around Natasha and Daniel’s first and possibly only day together. Third person accounts of other individuals mentioned in the story are also given throughout the novel. The ripple affect of one person’s actions is ever present.

I’ve been wanting to read The Sun is Also a Star ever since I read the excerpt in Everything Everything. Nicola Yoon is a master author. I thought the story was incredibly well written. I didn’t agree with everything expressed by the characters but Yoon expresses the opinions of characters without making them offensive towards those who disagree. This book would be great for sparking debate. I would love to see this read in high school classrooms, especially in this social climate.

As a child of an immigrant I could relate to both Daniel and Natasha. The way their parents didn’t completely understand how different being a hyphen America made them. The struggle of interracial dating with parental disapproval is also something I can understand all too well.

*4.5/5 Stars*

I’m so excited to see the movie when it comes out next year. I absolutely love Yara Shahidi. She’s such a wonderful person on and off the screen. I’m so happy she got this major role.