I’ve managed to read 17 books in August, but only one of those I made a plan to read to. I’m terrible at planning my TBR and somehow always ending reading books spontaneously.
But it seems that almost all of the books I have read this month have been absolutely amazing, and it’s so hard to choose my favourites. Especially the audiobooks I have listened to this month have been wonderful and while I haven’t included them all in my top 5 (mainly because I run out of space!), I’m putting together a list of my favourite audiobooks, so I will be sharing that with you all soon.
My Top 5 Books in August
Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko
This a book I really can’t stop talking about. I have yet to write a full review, but you can see a summary of my thoughts on the book here. I had the pleasure of taking part in a listenalong organised by TandemCollectiveUK and Bonnier Books on Instagram, and what a pleasure it has been! It’s possibly one of the best YA fantasy books I have read in recent years, and the narrator of the audiobook fitted so well with the story. Raybearer is West-African inspired story, following Tarisai as she grows up and struggles against destiny imposed on her by her mother. I loved this book so much that immediately after finishing audiobook, I have purchased the physical copy. This is one of those books, I will definitely re-read.
Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo
Clap When You Land is one of the last books I’ve read in August, but I have enjoyed it so much. With interchanging narration from the perspective of two half-sisters, who at the beginning of the story don’t know of each other’s existence, and very unique style, Clap When You Land has been such an intense read. Elizabeth Acevedo’s book follows the two young girls as they deal with the aftermath of their father’s death following his plane’s crash. It’s a heartbreaking story dealing with so many hard issues: parent’s death, grief, sexuality, race and sexual harassment amongst others. The unique style and formatting of the story what made Clap When You Land particularly stand out for me.
10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World by Elif Shafak
10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World is another book I have listened to, and I have enjoyed the narration very much. It’s one of those books that pulls you right into the story. The story follows Leila after her death when her mind still hasn’t left the body. She’s still here, even if for all the purposes, she’s dead – and in her mind, Leila recalls a sensuous memory linking to her past and people she has met. 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World has such vivid descriptions of the Middle East. While I inevitably enjoyed the first part of the book, focusing on Leila and her memories, more than the later where her friends are taking over the most important part of the narrative, I loved the narration style and the political background that always visible in 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World.
Those Who Are Loved by Victoria Hislop
Those Who Are Loved is one of the most interesting historical fiction books I have read recently. It allows the reader who doesn’t know Greece’s history in-depth to learn so much. At moments, Victoria Hislop’s book is very information-heavy, especially at the beginning, but it hasn’t bothered me personally. I’ve not known that much about Greece during the Second World War and the unstable period that followed except the general facts, so it has been super interesting to discover more. The book is full of interesting characters and in many ways, focuses on choices and their consequences – with the main character and her siblings disagreeing on which side they should have been.
Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know by Samira Ahmed
Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know is a great YA contemporary book set in August in Paris. It combines elements of YA romance, mystery and historical fiction. What starts as simply finding out more about famous figures following the mistake Khayyam has made in her essay that could stop from getting into art college she has her eyes set for, quickly becomes more – from feeling to her fellow amateur-historian, Alexandre to realising that there’s a more important story underneath. In Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know, Khayyam and Alexandre try to uncover a forgotten story of a woman lost in history. Khayyam’s voice is so unique in the book, with many cultures, places and religions playing a role in shaping her identity, and I would definitely recommend this book to anyone enjoying YA books.
What is your favourite book from August?