The Best Books I Read in June 2022

I finished 1 books in June and over half of them were 4-5 star reads, which is awesome! Here’s a look at my favorites.

Tough by Terry Crews

Memoir

This is a beautiful memoir. Terry is honest and vulnerable when it comes to every facet of his life. He talks about his abusive traumatic childhood, his journey to the NFL and then to Hollywood, including his role in the #MeToo movement. While it definitely has tragedy and sadness, overall I found his story to be one o hope and inspiration. He is setting a stellar example of not only how to be a man, but how to be a compassionate human in the world we live in. I appreciate his candidness about his past and struggles. I listened to the audiobook read by Terry and he did a great job. It was such an enjoyable listen. I highly recommend this one for readers of memoir and current issues.

Homecoming King by Penny Reid

Contemporary romance

I loved this book so much, it contains everything that I need in a romance novel: humor, heaviness, good writing, great sex. Abigail is a wonderful heroine. She’s been through some hard times and is just trying to pay off her debts and get through each day. Then along comes Rex, who she’s crushed on since elementary school, and he just happens to be a super famous football player. He turns her tiny world upside down when he asks for a HUGE favor. Abby and Rex are perfect together and as individual characters. They each have their own journey separate from their one to be together. Rex accepts her as she is and doesn’t try to change her or fix her problems, even when he has the ability to do so. My only complaint is the ending is abrupt and I wanted more! I can’t wait for the next in the series. I highly recommend this one for romance readers.

Just Haven’t Met You Yet by Sophie Cousens

Contemporary romance

I’m not sure I’ve ever given 5 stars to a closed door romance before! This brit-lit novel is absolutely charming and has everything I love about the romance genre. The sex happens but it isn’t explicit on the page, and for once I was okay with that because the rest of the book is perfection. There’s heaviness in relation to divorce, loss of a parent, grief, and dementia. There’s also hope and joy. I also enjoyed the scenery and local flair. This is a story about destiny but also about creating the life you choose. Laura and Ted are an unlikely couple but they’re great for each other. Watching them come to realize that was a joy. Also, the side characters are fantastic. I highly recommend this one for romance readers.

They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

Young adult fiction/Audiobook

What an interesting and powerful novel! I was hesitant to read it because I’m death phobic but I’m glad I did. It definitely made me anxious about death and it also inspired me to have fun and live fully. The entire book takes place in the course of one day. Shortly after midnight, both Mateo and Rufus receive calls from Death Cast altering them that this will be their last day alive. We follow them through this day. For a book where you know the ending in advance, this is intense and emotional. I couldn’t put it down! I started listening to the audio book and then switched to my physical copy so I could get through it faster. I highly recommend it for audio book listeners and readers of young adult stories.

Happy Go Lucky by David Sedaris

Personal essays

Of course this was enjoyable because it’s David Sedaris, but it had a different tone from his previous work. It’s heavier than usual. Which make sense, because most of the essays focused on the COVID pandemic or the death of his father. It’s obvious that he had been waiting until now to publish a few of these pieces. It’s not my favorite of his but it’s still very good. He has such an amazing ability to find dark humor in everyday life. I also appreciate his willingness to say the things the rest of us are thinking but don’t say out loud. I highly recommend this for Sedaris fans, it’s not the best starting point if you haven’t read him before.

A Lady For A Duke by Alexis Hall

Historical romance/LGBTQ+

This is so close to being a five star book, the only problem I had with it is that it’s slow. There is so much to love about this one. the story is epic and turned my insides to goo. Viola Carroll was presumed dead in the war and took the opportunity to live as her true self. Years later she reconnects with the man who was her dearest friend and has been blaming himself for her death. The way they come together again is an honor to witness. It’s written beautifully and honestly. I loved the acceptance that Viola receives from those who are close to her. Yet she is living in a gendered society with very specific gender related rules. The author handles this with grace and transparency. Viola’s story is very compelling, and there are several side stories and many side characters too. Historical settings can bore me sometimes but this one was very rich and interesting. I highly recommend it for any romance reader.


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