August Bookviews // Islands, Recipes and Devil Fires Indeed

Well, it looks like I completely forgot to do Bookviews for July. July didn’t even register in my mind until it was August. The number of books I read also dropped dramatically, but more writing’s happened and that’s taken priority. I’d still like to share my Bookviews for August 2020! (Here’s the Bookview post for June).

The format these sections is as follows. I’ll pull six titles from this site’s On My Bookshelf page: three from What I’ve Read, two from Upcoming Reads, and one from that dreaded DNF (Did Not Finish) pile. From What I’ve Read, you can expect my final thoughts on plot, character development, and a star rating. From Upcoming Reads, my expectations or hopes for the book. And perhaps even a prediction or two. Finally, from the DNFs, what made me close the cover for good and if I’ll ever attempt to read it again.

The First Section: What I’ve Read

SAVING MISS EVERLY
by Sally Britton

Rating: 3 out of 5.

July’s and August’s reads all have one thing in common: I wanted Regency. While I wanted gritty, adventurous Regencies, many that piqued my interest were the sweet romance variety.

That’s what I appreciated about SAVING MISS EVERLY. It’s unique setting felt very much like LOST (minus the airplanes) x CAST AWAY and I’m not mad at that at all.

With that being said, I did feel like there were one too many characters. I also felt that several of the characters’ reactions to situations were blown out of proportion. This could be an 1814 vs 2020 disconnect.

If you like uncertainty, adventure, islands (definitely a summer read), and romance, then give SAVING MISS EVERLY a try.

Sally’s Links

ALLEGHENY CITY: A HISTORY OF PITTSBURGH’S NORTH SIDE
by Dan Rooney and Carol Peterson

Rating: 4 out of 5.

If you’re from Pittsburgh, or even familiar with the National Football League at all, there’s a good chance you’ve heard the name Dan Rooney. Naturally, a book published by such an iconic man as Mr. Rooney would make headline news for weeks on end.

My church, located on Pittsburgh’s North Side, was formed in 1992 when two churches came together in one building we still call home. I never knew the historical significance of our location until I began my research journey in 2016.

Since then I’ve poured over maps and my fascination grew for things that used to be in my own city. I’m sad for not picking this up sooner. Even if you don’t read this book, consider looking into your own town’s history. There’s informational gems there you may never otherwise discover!

News Article Links

STORING UP TROUBLE
by Jen Turano

Rating: 5 out of 5.

This is one book I’m glad I bought in paperback and not Kindle. If you want romance, and you want adventure, then STORING UP TROUBLE should definitely be your next read.

I was actually really happy to find a book set in my own manuscript’s time frame, as many things mentioned throughout her story matched with what I know from research.

What I didn’t realize when I picked this up is that it’s part of the American Heiresses series. It can be read as a standalone. That being said, I could easily devour all of Turano’s stories, just like I do those by Melanie Dickerson.

Jen’s Links

The Second Section: My Upcoming Reads

THE UNOFFICIAL DOWNTON ABBEY COOKBOOK
by Emily Ansara Baines

I’ll not include any stars for these entries as I’ve yet to read them. Instead, I’ll include its brief synopsis, why I picked it up, and what I hope will come from the story.

Would you believe me if I told you I’ve never seen any part of the Downton Abbey television series?

Then why did I buy THE UNOFFICIAL DOWNTON ABBEY COOKBOOK? The answer is simple. Research.

I wondered: how old could some of the recipes be? Would they be at least reminiscent of dishes served in late Victoria?

So it’s time to learn how to cook again. For science.

Emily’s Links

A LADY OUT OF TIME
by Caroline Harris

I’ll not include any stars for these entries as I’ve yet to read them. Instead, I’ll include its brief synopsis, why I picked it up, and what I hope will come from the story.

The Lake House. A Wrinkle in Time. The Time Traveler’s Wife. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. What do all these stories have in common? Time travel.

It’s a trope that’s been used time and time again (see what I did there?), but what’s important is the author’s ability to control it. That’s what I’m most anxious to see in A LADY OUT OF TIME.

Caroline’s Links

The Third Section: What I Did Not Finish

THE DEVIL’S FIRE
by Matt Tomerlin

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Oh boy. Where do I even begin with THE DEVIL’S FIRE? No book I’ve ever attempted to read made me madder than this one.

Now here’s the trouble I face. Do I write a scathing review or do I suggest you buy it and attempt reading such an necessarily violent, misogynistic tale yourself? Part of a trilogy (the first book), I honestly don’t see how this was published.

Whoops – did I say that last bit aloud?

I’m mad at this book all over again.

Matt’s Links

Well? What do you guys think? I hope you had fun reading through these titles and my thoughts on them. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Published by Leigh A. Hartman

Hey all! Welcome to my website! I'm currently writing my first novel series called The Firedamp Chronicles. Check out the following links to find out more about why I write!

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