My (somewhat underwhelming) reading year so far

Happy Friday, everyone! I hope you had a lovely week and have great weekend plans! Today I thought I’d do a mid(ish) year wrap-up and talk about what I’ve read so far this year.

Honestly, it’s been a bit of a meh year. I haven’t read anything bad, but I’ve only read one five-star book and one 4.5-star book. Almost all the books I’ve read have been three or 3.5 stars, which are books I consider good but nothing special. It’s been somewhat frustrating reading average books all year. Like I said, most of the books I’ve read haven’t been bad. But they’ve just been fine. I enjoyed reading them and was entertained, but I wasn’t really blown away by any of them (except Six of Crows because it was amazing!).

I think my biggest issue is that I haven’t been mood reading as much as I usually do. All the books I’ve read were books I wanted to read, but not necessarily the books I wanted to read at that time. The ones I have mood read turned out to be way more enjoyable. So I think for the rest of the summer, I’m going to try to mood read a bit more.

Anyway, on to the books! For the books I’ve fully reviewed, click the title to read my review.

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2019 1

(📚) = owned prior to 2019
(📖) = on TBR prior to 2019


The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (3 stars) (📚, 📖): my first read of the year. This was a really interesting concept and well-written, but I wasn’t in love with it. I felt kind of disjointed from the story.


Women Talking by Miriam Toews (3.5 stars) (📚, 📖): my biggest issue with this book was I felt pulled out of the story by the narration style.


Dreams of Joy by Lisa See (4.5 stars) (📚, 📖): I loved this book so much!!! Honestly, if you like historical fiction, you definitely have to read Lisa See.


Broken Things by Lauren Oliver (3.5 stars) (📖): this book was exactly what I needed when I needed it. It was interesting and well-written enough to hold my attention and keep me distracted from school.


Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrande (3.5 stars) (📖): Sawkill Girls was another really interesting book that just didn’t totally click with me. I loved the concept, the diversity, and the characters, but I thought the pacing was a bit weird and there were some aspects of the plot that annoyed me (full review coming next week!).


The Secret History by Donna Tartt (3.5 stars) (📖): my biggest issue with this book was how much it d r a g g e d in the middle. But it was still so interesting and Tartt is a fantastic writer.


The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline B. Cooney (3 stars) (📖): this book had been on my TBR since 2012. I’m so happy to have finally read it. It was a super quick read (I think it took me 7 hours to read or something) and was really interesting. If I had read it when I was in junior high, I can guarantee I would have continued with the series.


The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Tutrton (3.5 stars) (📚): I loved the plot and idea of this story and thought it was really interesting and well-written. I only had some minor complaints, which is why it’s 3.5 instead of 4 stars.


The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne (3 stars) (📚, 📖): y’all know my thoughts by now. But in short, this was a fantastic novel that just had some (IMO) problematic representation.


Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (5 stars) (📚, 📖): my first five-star of the year!! I loved this book! I am on the SOC fan train!! I’m so happy I read it and cannot stop thinking about it!


A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard (4 stars): I picked this up on a bit of a whim from a used book sale. It was also a fairly quick read, despite the heavy content. But I really enjoyed it and am happy I read it!


Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder (5 stars) (reread): I felt a slump coming, so I decided to reread an old favourite. And, unsurprisingly, I loved this just as much as the first 4 times I read it.


A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith (4 stars) (📚, 📖): I ended up really enjoying this book! Honestly, my biggest complaint was that it took me a while to get through. That’s definitely not the book’s fault, it was just me ignoring it.


Slide by Jill Hathaway (3 stars) (📖): this book was super entertaining and a quick and easy read, but it didn’t have a ton of substance and wasn’t overly amazing. The main character mentions that she has pink hair eight times in seven different chapters.


I’m currently reading Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi (finally) and loving it! I think it’ll definitely be 5 stars, unless something major happens. I also made it to the halfway point of 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami, so I’m so happy about that too!

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So there’s my year in books so far! Overall, all but two of the books I read were on my TBR prior to 2019 and I owned seven of them prior to reading them, which I’m super happy about.

But what about you? Have you read any of these? Which should I read next? How’s your reading year been? Are you having better luck than me? Let me know!

Ally xx

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13 thoughts on “My (somewhat underwhelming) reading year so far

  1. I’ve been meaning to re-read Poison Study for ages. I remember loving it, but it’s been so long that I forget most of what happens. And I really want to read The Seven (1/2) Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle! I’ve been looking forward to getting to that one for ages.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Too bad you didn’t fall in love with “the ocean at the end of the lane” and “the secret history” (completely fair ofc). I’ve been having a really shitty reading year as well so far?! First reason is that I’ve just read less, but from what I’ve read there’s been too many misses and too few that I really fell in love with. Trying to see what I can do about it as it doesn’t like inspire to read that much more, maybe I’m doing a rapid-fire round where I just start and stop a lot of books until I find one that I immediately seem to connect with and start from there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ugh it’s been the worst, glad to know I’m not alone lol. But same, I’ve had a hard time falling in love with a book lately. Hopefully some of yours work out soon though! That sounds like a good plan for figuring out what you’re in the mood to read

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I see your ‘meh’ and raise you a ‘yeuch!’ I can’t believe it’s been half a year gone already (just in general life stuff) but sadly I feel it’s an underwhelming year that started ok, got great and then got ‘yeuch’ again just as quickly! Let’s hope it turns a corner for us both!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I loved Poison Study when I was younger and I’ve been a bit reluctant to re-read it in case my rose-colored glasses come off and it’s not as good as I remember…but if you’ve read it re-read it 4 times, then I have hope it’s aged well!

    Liked by 1 person

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