Some June 2019 Book Releases

Summer is right around the corner!

What better way to enjoy the care-free beach days and long, relaxing nights than curling up with a favorite book! Here are some new titles coming your way for the month of June.

The following descriptions are from Simonandschuster.com:

Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner
Atria Books
Length: 480 pgs
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Contemporary
Release Date: June 11, 2019

Jo and Bethie Kaufman were born into a world full of promise.

Growing up in 1950s Detroit, they live in a perfect “Dick and Jane” house, where their roles in the family are clearly defined. Jo is the tomboy, the bookish rebel with a passion to make the world more fair; Bethie is the pretty, feminine good girl, a would-be star who enjoys the power her beauty confers and dreams of a traditional life.

But the truth ends up looking different from what the girls imagined. Jo and Bethie survive traumas and tragedies. As their lives unfold against the background of free love and Vietnam, Woodstock and women’s lib, Bethie becomes an adventure-loving wild child who dives headlong into the counterculture and is up for anything (except settling down). Meanwhile, Jo becomes a proper young mother in Connecticut, a witness to the changing world instead of a participant. Neither woman inhabits the world she dreams of, nor has a life that feels authentic or brings her joy. Is it too late for the women to finally stake a claim on happily ever after?

Man of the Year by Caroline Louise Walker
Gallery Books
Genre: Suspense
Length: 304 pgs
Release Date: June 11, 2019

Dr. Robert Hart, Sag Harbor’s just-named Man of the Year, is the envy of his friends and neighbors. His medical practice is thriving. He has a beautiful old house and a beautiful new wife and a beautiful boat docked in the village marina. Even his wayward son, Jonah, is back on track, doing well at school, finally worthy of his father’s attentions. So when Jonah’s troubled college roommate, Nick, needs a place to stay for the summer, Hart and his wife generously offer him their guest house. A win-win: Jonah will have someone to hang with, and his father can bask in the warm glow of his own generosity.

But when he begins to notice his new houseguest getting a little too close to his wife, the good doctor’s veneer begins to crack. All the little lies Robert tells—harmless falsehoods meant to protect everything he holds dear—begin to mount. Before long, he’s embroiled in a desperate downward spiral, destroying the lives that stand in his way. It’s only the women in his life—his devoted office manager, his friends, his wife—who can clearly see the truth.

Midsummer’s Mayhem by Rajani Larocca
Simon & Schuster Books
Length: 352 pgs
Genre: Middle Grade
Release Date: June 11, 2019

Can Mimi undo the mayhem caused by her baking in this contemporary-fantasy retelling of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream?

Eleven-year-old Mimi Mackson comes from a big Indian American family: Dad’s a renowned food writer, Mom’s a successful businesswoman, and her three older siblings all have their own respective accomplishments. It’s easy to feel invisible in such an impressive family, but Mimi’s dream of proving she’s not the least-talented member of her family seems possible when she discovers a contest at the new bakery in town. Plus, it’ll start her on the path to becoming a celebrity chef like her culinary idol, Puffy Fay.

But when Mimi’s dad returns from a business trip, he’s mysteriously lost his highly honed sense of taste. Without his help, Mimi will never be able to bake something impressive enough to propel her to gastronomic fame.

Drawn into the woods behind her house by a strangely familiar song, Mimi meets Vik, a boy who brings her to parts of the forest she’s never seen. Who knew there were banyan trees and wild boars in Massachusetts? Together they discover exotic ingredients and bake them into delectable and enchanting treats.

But as her dad acts stranger every day, and her siblings’ romantic entanglements cause trouble in their town, Mimi begins to wonder whether the ingredients she and Vik found are somehow the cause of it all. She needs to use her skills, deductive and epicurean, to uncover what’s happened. In the process, she learns that in life, as in baking, not everything is sweet. . . .

The following titles are from penguinrandomhouse.com

City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Length: 480 pgs
Riverhead Books

Beloved author Elizabeth Gilbert returns to fiction with a unique love story set in the New York City theater world during the 1940s. Told from the perspective of an older woman as she looks back on her youth with both pleasure and regret (but mostly pleasure), City of Girls explores themes of female sexuality and promiscuity, as well as the idiosyncrasies of true love.

In 1940, nineteen-year-old Vivian Morris has just been kicked out of Vassar College, owing to her lackluster freshman-year performance. Her affluent parents send her to Manhattan to live with her Aunt Peg, who owns a flamboyant, crumbling midtown theater called the Lily Playhouse. There Vivian is introduced to an entire cosmos of unconventional and charismatic characters, from the fun-chasing showgirls to a sexy male actor, a grand-dame actress, a lady-killer writer, and no-nonsense stage manager. But when Vivian makes a personal mistake that results in professional scandal, it turns her new world upside down in ways that it will take her years to fully understand. Ultimately, though, it leads her to a new understanding of the kind of life she craves – and the kind of freedom it takes to pursue it. It will also lead to the love of her life, a love that stands out from all the rest.

Now eighty-nine years old and telling her story at last, Vivian recalls how the events of those years altered the course of her life – and the gusto and autonomy with which she approached it. “At some point in a woman’s life, she just gets tired of being ashamed all the time,” she muses. “After that, she is free to become whoever she truly is.” Written with a powerful wisdom about human desire and connection, City of Girls is a love story like no other.

Wolf Rain by Nalini Singh
Book #3 of the Psy Changeling Trinity series
Berkeley Publishing
Length: 400 pgs
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Fantasy
Release Date: June 4, 2019

The end of Silence was supposed to create a better world for future generations. But trust is broken, and the alliance between Psy, Changeling, and human is thin. The problems that led to Silence are back in full force. Because Silence fixed nothing, just hid the problems.

This time, the Psy have to find a real answer to their problems–if one exists. Or their race will soon go extinct in a cascade of violence. The answer begins with an empath who is attuned to monsters–and who is going to charm a wolf into loving her despite his own demons.

Love Double Dutch! by Doreen Spicer-Dannelly
Yearling Books
Genre: Children’s (Middle Grade)
Length: 256 pgs
Release Date: June 4, 2019

Brooklyn middle-schooler MaKayla can only think about one thing–taking her double Dutch team all the way to the National Jump-off at Madison Square Garden. That is, until her mother breaks the news. Kayla has to spend the summer at her aunt’s house in North Carolina while her parents work out their problems . . . or decide to call it quits.

Kayla does not feel at home in the South, and she certainly doesn’t get along with her snooty cousin Sally. It looks like her Jump-off dreams are over.

Hold the phone! Turns out, double Dutch is huge in the South. She and Sally just need to find two more kids for a team. And a routine. And the confidence to stand up to the double Dutch divas who used to be Sally’s BFFs. Time to show those Southern belles some Brooklyn attitude!

Crooked Kingdom: Reading Blog #1

I finally began reading Crooked Kingdom! I’m at Chapter Five, where the Dregs are formulating a plan to rescue one of their own valuable members. The story begins with Kaz Brekker and his crew are at a severe disadvantage, trying to navigate around their community when the entire area is at odds with them.

Like Six of Crows, this story immediately drew me in. I can’t believe that it took me all month to begin reading it! I purchased the story as a Kindle read, so I can now catch without worrying about returning it to the library. I adore library books, but I took too long to get around reading my borrowed copy, and I couldn’t renew it since another patron wanted to borrow it (since it’s being adapted to Netflix soon, I can understand the demand).

I can’t wait to delve deeper into the story, especially reading about the strong female characters in the book.

I’m also reading a Netgalley selection, Time After Time by Lisa Grunwald. This story takes place in New York City in the 30s, centering around an engineer falling in love with a mysterious woman he sees among the crowds. I love everything about New York City. Since I was once a resident in the Bronx and Upper Manhattan, I always hold a special place in my heart for New York.

Professional Reader

Asian Readathon TBR

This month is a very, very lackluster reading period…I’m in progress of reading one book at the moment. That story is Crooked Kingdom, by Leigh Bardugo. I wanted to read this story at the beginning of April, but it never came to pass. Better late than never, I guess!

Now that May is approaching, I want to get back into reading more than one book per month. Since the Asian Readathon is during the month of May, I decided to give it a go! I set my goal to reading three books this month. If I get to these books, great. If I can read more, even better!

Read a book by an Asian author
‘The Gilded Wolves’ by Roshani Chokshi

From Goodreads:

It’s 1889. The city is on the cusp of industry and power, and the Exposition Universelle has breathed new life into the streets and dredged up ancient secrets. Here, no one keeps tabs on dark truths better than treasure-hunter and wealthy hotelier Séverin Montagnet-Alarie. When the elite, ever-powerful Order of Babel coerces him to help them on a mission, Séverin is offered a treasure that he never imagined: his true inheritance.

To hunt down the ancient artifact the Order seeks, Séverin calls upon a band of unlikely experts: An engineer with a debt to pay. A historian banished from his home. A dancer with a sinister past. And a brother in arms if not blood.

Together, they will join Séverin as he explores the dark, glittering heart of Paris. What they find might change the course of history–but only if they can stay alive.

Read a book featuring a Intersectional Asian character
‘Girls of Paper and Fire’ by Natasha Ngan

From Goodreads:

In this lush fantasy, Lei is a member of the Paper caste, the lowest and most oppressed class in Ikhara. She lives in a remote village with her father, where the decade-old trauma of watching her mother snatched by royal guards still haunts her. Now, the guards are back, and this time it’s Lei they’re after–the girl whose golden eyes have piqued the king’s interest.

Over weeks of training in the opulent but stifling palace, Lei and eight other girls learn the skills and charm that befit being a king’s consort. But Lei isn’t content to watch her fate consume her. Instead, she does the unthinkable–she falls in love. Her forbidden romance becomes enmeshed with an explosive plot that threatens the very foundation of Ikhara, and Lei, still the wide-eyed country girl at heart, must decide just how far she’s willing to go for justice and revenge.

https://i2.wp.com/www.warandmedia.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Screen-Shot-2015-04-30-at-10.47.21.png?resize=700%2C474

Read a graphic novel
‘The Boat’ by Matt Huynh


April OwlCrate Unboxing: The Dark Side

I’m so excited to receive my OwlCrate for the month of April! I received some special treats in this particular box, and I’m happy about the book I received!

Spoiler card for ‘The Dark Side’ Owl Crate
On right: Phone holder designed by Hey Atlas Creative

Center: Six of Crows socks, designed by Out of Print

Left: Enamel pin designed by Hey Atlas Creative
Scarf inspired by the Grishaverse, created by Bookmark’d Tattoos
‘Wicked Saints’ fabric book map

Hardcover notebook, inspired by Stella Bookish Art

Excerpt from ‘Finale’, by Stephanie Garber
Signed copy of ‘Wicked Saints’ by Emily A. Duncan

Letter from the author

Easter Book Tag

Happy Easter to those who celebrate! I discovered this tag from Crowing About Books.

Rabbit: A book you wish would multiply (a book you want a sequel to, but doesn’t have one)

I would love ‘The Oyster Thief’ to have a sequel! It was such an amazing story about adventure and becoming your own person, set within the underwater world.

Egg: A book that surprised you

I would say The Killing Dance (Anita Blake #6) by Laurell K. Hamilton was a story that surprised me. Anita is a vampire, and the series began with her steadfast on ridding the supernatural from her area, romance being the last on her mind. By the end of the novel Anita takes on a different perspective, and this begins the radical shift in Anita’s curiosities toward desire and sexual exploration with the supernatural.

Hunt: A book that was hard for you to get your hands on

I’m going to refer to a children’s book for this one! I was searching for ‘Ten Tiny Turtles’ by Emily Ford for my Toddler classroom. I owned it a couple years ago, but it fell apart because…well…toddlers+an accessible book on the shelf=no more book!
I was searching for months for another copy, but no luck. I finally discovered an extra copy in a bookshelf in one of the classrooms that’s only used during after school time. It’s a bit worn, but the pages are still intact!

Lambs: A children’s book you still enjoy

I love anything Snoopy/Peanuts related. And also the ‘Frog and Toad’ series. I can return to them at any time and feel happy.

Spring: A book with a cover that makes you thing of Spring

‘Snow Flower and the Secret Fan’ by Lisa See. It’s a memorable story of two women keeping an enduring relationship throughout the decades, communicating through codes passed on through memorable keepsakes.

Rising From the Dead: A book from a deceased author

‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ by Harper Lee. This story follows a young girl named Scout growing up in Alabama during the Great Depression. It captures the plight of racism in its raw, uncensored form.

Basket: A book that is in your Amazon cart or wish list right now

‘Crooked Kingdom’ by Leigh Bardugo. I can’t wait to read this story! I also have ‘Hollow City’ by Ransom Riggs story on this list. I thoroughly enjoyed ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’.

Candy: A book that is sweet

‘One Day in December’ by Josie Silver. This story follows the lives of Laurie and Jack over a 10 year span, after a chance encounter at a bus stop in London. It’s equal parts sweet and heartbreaking.



March 2019 Reading Wrap-Up

For the month of March, I read 6 books. One was an audiobook, one was an eARC through NetGalley, three were library books, and one was a Barnes & Noble purchase.

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
462 pages
Book 2 of Ketterdam Duology

I gave this story 5 Stars. I picked up Six of Crows through the local library. I really enjoyed how diverse the characters were in this book, and I enjoyed how inventive Kaz and the Dregs got while pulling off their heist. The female characters were also very strong and lovely to read.

Is There Still Sex In the City? by Candace Bushnell
Publisher: Grove Atlantic Press
272 Pages
Publication Date on August 6, 2019

I gave this book 4 Stars. I received this book as an ARC through NetGalley. This story follows the struggles of dating while living through your 40s and 50s. Candace delivers the adventures of her friends with brutal honesty, while adding her own unique humor that was her trademark in the Sex and the City series.

Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Publisher: Ballantine Books
368 Pages

I read this story as an audiobook through Audible, and I’m so glad I purchased it through this format! Listening to the characters speak about their adventures in music and life felt like I was listening to a rock documentary. I’m equally excited that this book is being turned into a mini-series, since it brings the chance of The Six’s songs coming to life. I gave this book 5 Stars!

Minion by L.A. Banks
Publisher: Saint Martin’s Press
286 pages
Book 1 of the Vampire Huntress series


(cover is pictured at the top photo)
I also received this book at the local library. I gave this book 4 Stars. This tells the tale of Damali Richards, a young women who is destined to become a Neteru, a powerful vampire huntress, upon her 21st birthday. The book begins a short time before Damali undergoes her awakening, as her Guardians fight to protect her from an unknown evil that proves stronger than any vampire they’ve come across. ‘Minion’ largely sets up the major plot line for the next installment of the series, but I appreciated catching up with the story.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Publisher: Balzar and Bray
444 pages


I gave this book 4 Stars. I purchased ‘The Hate U Give’ through Barnes & Noble. It tells the story of Starr Carter, a 16 year old girl who is the sole witness of the murder of her best friend Khalil. This book does a wonderful job of taking on the issue of discrimination and police brutality with raw honesty. Starr strives to finds her voice within her community and the school she feels restricted in.

Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero
Publisher: Doubleday Books
322 Pages


I gave this book 4 Stars. This was the third book that I received from my local library. I appreciated the adult take towards the Scooby Doo gang stories. The group has different names in this book, yet their excitement in taking on their a case takes on a hint of nostalgia towards the television series it takes from. It takes on an adult tone though, as the dark humor and jump-scare moments indicate.

Professional Reader

My OwlCrate for March

I’m so excited to receive my OwlCrate for this month! This month’s theme is Murder and Mayhem:

–Travel mug inspired by Nevernight and designed by Catarina Book Designs
–Canvas drawstring backpack designed by Michelle Gray
–Exclusive pencil designed for OwlCrate
Sunai candle inspired by the monsters from The Savage Song, designed by In The Wick of Time
–Compass pin designed by Iron and Ink Designs
–Sticker inspired by Three Dark Crowns, illustrated by Jamila Mehio
–Wooden bookmark designed by Ink and Wonder Designs
–Signed copy of Four Dead Queens
by Astrid Scholte, along with character art print. Letter from the author is in the next photo

My Review of ‘Daisy Jones and The Six’ by Taylor Jenkins Reid

‘Daisy Jones and the Six’ by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Length: 368 pages

Publisher: Penguin Random House

Format I chose: Audiobook (through Audible)

‘Daisy Jones and the Six’ by Taylor Jenkins Reid chronicles the history of a legendary 70s band named The Six, paired with Daisy Jones, a powerful and charismatic female singer. An interviewer collects accounts from all members of the band, various members from band management, and close friends/ family. Each person describes the rock culture as it existed during the 1970s: a wild dose of sex, drugs and rock and roll.

‘Daisy Jones and the Six’ also centers around the human relationships within its band members dynamic, how personality conflicts and love can make a band both flourish and fall apart. Taylor Jenkins Reid has the ability to create a vibrant world painted within the very turbulent period of the 70s rock and drug culture. She writes their stories so vividly that you’re left longing to hear the works of both Daisy Jones and The Six, and locate any interviews on these iconic figures.

I picked up the audiobook version of the novel through Audible. Listening to the tale made me feel like I was hearing a classic rock documentary, listening to the rock adventures of these characters and loved ones. I was engaged with the story until the very end.

Rating: 5/5 Stars

My Review of ‘Is There Still Sex In the City’ by Candace Bushnell

I received an ARC of ‘Is There Still Sex in the City’ through NetGalley and Grove Atlantic in exchange for an honest review.

I thought ‘Is There Still Sex in the City’ by Candace Bushnell was a quick and light read. I loved the references of living in New York while handling relationship struggles during mid-life. It also made me reflect back to my years of living in NYC during my early-mid 30s. I myself was suddenly single during part of this time, and I could relate during the ‘online dating’ exploration chapter! The book is set between the Upper East Side in New York, and an enclave in Connecticut known as the ‘Village’, where stories of finding love in older men and experiencing love in times of life crises emerge.  

I didn’t particularly find ‘Is There Still Sex in the City’ a riveting story, but it was enjoyable to reflect back to Candace Bushnell’s ‘Sex in the City’ series. I have yet to read Bushnell’s other stories, but I would love to in the near future. I’ve been feeling intense feelings of nostalgia for New York City, since I certainly learned much about myself as an individual during that time period.  

If you love reading about long lasting friendships while surviving life in the big city, this book is for you!

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Professional Reader

March 10, 2019: The 1st Book Series I Read

The first book series I got addicted to was the ‘Sweet Valley Twins’ series. I was in 4th grade, and I loved ordering from the Scholastic Book clubs that my grade school offered. Every month during the school year, my mom allowed me to order many stories from the Scholastic forms, and I would enjoy them. During my 4th grade year, as I was looking through the Troll form, I saw a book featuring two girls with a horse on the cover. ‘Sweet Valley Twins #8’ was on the cover. I think that I was very intrigued by the horse on the cover, since I also adored animals at the time. I was also curious what would happen to Elizabeth.

I brought it home a couple weeks later, and I was hooked! I enjoyed reading about the lives of the Wakefield twins, and their inner circle of friends. These characters lived a seemingly ‘glamourous’ life of social gatherings and spacious homes, and I didn’t have that kind of life when I was younger. So while I was reading these stories, I could escape. I didn’t just wait until it was time to order the stories in the Troll book forms…since I frequented Borders Books and Music, I naturally searched for the new selections in the Sweet Valley series.

Reading this book series was the beginning of my interest toward books in a series. A couple years later, it branched into ‘Sweet Valley High’, then later ‘The Babysitters Club’. That series introduced me to Stacey McGill, a young girl handling a life with Type 1 Diabetes. Reading about her daily struggles was key in helping me understand Diabetes when I was diagnosed with this condition during my teen years. Reading guided me toward a deeper understanding of people living through different circumstances, living their lives from day-to-day.