June Book Round-up

Picture Books

What this Story Needs is a Hush and a Shush by Emma J. Virjan

I loved her first “Pig in a Wig” book and this follow-up is equally as enjoyable (though I still like the first one best). Pig is trying to go to sleep, but she’s having a hard time with all the noise of the barnyard who tries to crowd into her bed. Very cute, rhyming story with a funny twist at the end, and we had fun practicing all the animal noises out loud in storytime this week.

Rrralph by Lois Ehlert

Ralph is the most clever dog ever – he can talk! Parents love the humor in this book as much as the kids (“What’s on the tree Ralph?” “Bark! Bark!”) and the illustrations are as great as you would expect from any of Ehlert’s other works.

Juvenile/Young Adult

Library of Souls: The Third Novel of Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

I really wasn’t sure if I cared enough to make it through the third book of this series – I liked the first one well enough, the second one I could have lived without, but something propelled me to order it. I have loved the old-time images used in this book, purchased and curated by the author to create the impetus for the plot of this story. This book began very slowly but by the middle really started to pick up. Overall, I’d say the series was resoundingly ok. Probably not one I’d recommend very often, but I don’t regret having read it either, and wouldn’t dissuade someone from picking up the first novel.

Mr. Lemoncello’s Library Olympics by Chris Grabenstein

I love Mr. Lemoncello, and this book was just as excellent as the first. I love completing all the puzzles, I love Mr. Lemoncello’s stark defense of the power of the library and information, I love the zany plot and the zanier characters. Definitely would recommend.

Simon vs. the Homo Sapien’s Agenda by Becky Albertalli

This was a fun read, but I will say that if I have to read one more YA novel about an LGBT character who is in a play, I’m gonna go crazy. I liked that this novel didn’t shy away from discussing sex and that Simon wasn’t personally ashamed of or afraid of or struggled with his LGBT identity in any way.

George by Alex Gino

Yet another LGBT book centered around a theatrical production. I was tempted to give it low ratings just for that reason alone but I actually did find this to be much more informative than a very similar book I reviewed a few months back – Gracefully GraysonSimilar to Simon, I liked that George had already discovered her LGBT identity and accepted it in herself, though she did have trouble coming out to others.


Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

I don’t really read much adult romance, if at all, so it definitely took some adjusting for me to get past how corny it felt at first to get into this book, but once I started caring about the characters I did enjoy it. I feel uncomfortable about the assertions the author makes throughout the book about living life with a disability, but I did empathize with the main character’s desperation to help someone she cares for to find meaning in their life. Also I have a very hard time thinking that anything Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) would be a part of could be bad.

The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

I. loved. this. book. I haven’t really read many classics in the past year, and I really have been falling behind in my quest to conquer the BBC Top 100, so when I saw a Buzzfeed article  recommending this one, I had to give it a go. I don’t think it was quite as “suspenseful” as I was expecting, but there was certainly a lot of mystery and plot twisting and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Even if you don’t like Victorian novels, it was worth the read.

The Girl on the Train by Pamela Hawkins

This is another one I was convinced to read by the aforementioned Buzzfeed article (as well as the fact that its been on the bestsellers list for more than a year now and I have to say, I wasn’t very impressed. I guessed the plot twist very early on (as most people seem to have, from the Goodreads reviews) and I really hated all the characters. That seems to be a trend in the bestseller novels lately – all the characters have to be thoroughly unredeemable – and I truly despise it. I definitely sped through this one and I won’t say I didn’t enjoy it, but it certainly did not live up to the hype.





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