August Reads 2015

This month the Sassy Books read was pretty big so I didn’t think I would get many more read, however the last Tuesday of the month was pretty early on and I had a weekend of traveling to do so I managed to squeeze in another three.  I also finished a book before my Sassy Books read so this makes a total of five, so I think I’m getting my reading mojo back!  I forgot to picture one of them however, I blame my constant sleep deprived brain!
Milkweed by Jerry Spinelli

He’s a boy called Jew. Gypsy. Stopthief. Runt. Happy. Fast. Filthy son of Abraham. 

He’s a boy who lives in the streets of Warsaw. He’s a boy who steals food for himself and the other orphans. He’s a boy who believes in bread, and mothers, and angels. He’s a boy who wants to be a Nazi some day, with tall shiny jackboots and a gleaming Eagle hat of his own. Until the day that suddenly makes him change his mind. And when the trains come to empty the Jews from the ghetto of the damned, he’s a boy who realizes it’s safest of all to be nobody.

I got this book ages ago in a local library sale and shelved it, unsure if I would actually get around to reading it.  However for some reason this month it called out to me so I thought I’d give it a try, and I’m glad I did.  I don’t know what I exspected but it was a very real, very sweet story set in such a heartbreaking time.  The lead character did seem a bit unbelievable at times as he was so nieve and innocent but I really felt for him.  The use of childhood nicknames and descriptions of the Nazis were very striking and you could tell that no one really knew the true extent to what was happening at the time.  Not an unmissable story but still good none the less.


All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr 
Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.
In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.
This is last months Sassy Books read, it was a little slow at times but beautifully written, check out my full review here.
Habeas Corpus by Alan Bennett 

I forgot to take a photo of the book, and I can’t find the blurb anywhere.  Massive blog fail.  Anyway this is a play text, a typical 70’s style farce given a Bennett twist.  It’s hard to read a farce without seeing it unfortunately as the humour is lost and this did seem dated although it made me laugh a couple of times.  I wouldn’t have read it if it wasn’t part of a Bennett collection I already have.


Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King 

Vera’s spent her whole life secretly in love with her best friend, Charlie Kahn. And over the years she’s kept a lot of his secrets. Even after he betrayed her. Even after he ruined everything.

So when Charlie dies in dark circumstances, Vera knows a lot more than anyone—the kids at school, his family, even the police. But will she emerge to clear his name? Does she even want to?

I’ve been wanting to read some A.S.King for years after hearing some really good things and I finally picked this up to read last month.  I have gone off Y.A in general however you can’t beat Y.A when it’s done right and has strong characters, this definitely has those.  It was a read that was both dark and light, with a bit of humour thrown in.  I didn’t love the characters but I think they were fairly well developed even if some of the lead character’s actions I couldn’t really rationalise.  I’ll definitely be reading more from this author.


Lost at Sea by Brian O’Malley

Raleigh doesn’t have a soul. A cat stole it – or at least that’s what she tells people – or at least that’s what she would tell people if she told people anything. But that would mean talking to people, and the mere thought of social interaction is terrifying. How did such a shy teenage girl end up in a car with three of her hooligan classmates on a cross-country road trip? Being forced to interact with kids her own age is a new and alarming proposition for Raleigh, but maybe it’s just what she needs – or maybe it can help her find what she needs – or maybe it can help her to realize that what she needs has been with her all along.

This is a cute, quirky story told via some beautiful, sometimes simple art.  It isn’t O’Malley’s best work but it has all the qualities in it that made Scott Pilgrim so lovable.  It has an edge of nerdiness, humour and ultimately reliability that makes his stories so great.

Don’t forget you can follow me on Goodreads or Instagram using the hashtag #karissreads2015 to keep up to date with everything I’m reading this year!

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