What I Read in June 2021
As we enter July 2021 – where is the time going! – it’s time to recap on what I read in June 2021.
This month I read nine books. Pretty strong reading month, bearing in mind it’s been busy with the release of my debut novel and several birthdays, including my own.
The Witch’s Heart is a Norse mythology re-telling. I’m moving away from Greek Myth – for a short time only – into Norse mythology and I’m loving it. I know the basics of Norse Myth, mostly because of Marvel movies, but this book gave me an in-depth look into Asgardians and the nine realms, as well as Ragnorak. A mythical disaster a lot like the Big Bang!
This story follows a Witch who goes by the name Angrboda as she cannot remember who she really is, with incredible powers. She went to Odin, the All-Father of Asgard, to teach him the darkest forms of magic and he turned on her, killing her for her secrets. She was killed three times before escaping. She’s a witch, she can die and still escape! She goes to a cave at the furthest edge of the universe to hide, but her heart has been stolen. Then Loki, the God of Mischief shows up and returns it to her. What happens next is a romance/family melodrama with lots of self-discovery and mythology thrown in.
It’s a good read with a lot of twists and turns, very fantastical and dramatic. It could have been a series with all that occurs. Well worth a read if you like mythology and legends.
I listened to this personal development book are careers via Audible. It was okay, but nothing that Sarah or Helen said whacked me over the head and made me sit up and listen. A lot of the learnings are fairly universal. If you’ve read The Multi-Hyphen Method by Emma Gannon, then you’ll already know most of what they say. But there are some good facts and figures about working life and office work. These are particularly useful if you’re looking to convince your boss to let you remain remote working after the pandemic.
I have returned to the world of Bridgerton, but the early years! The Rokesby series is the prequel series to Julia’s Quinn bestselling Bridgerton series. This book series follows the Rokesby and Bridgertons who are neighbours. Edmund Bridgerton is the eldest son, currently away at school, and he will eventually marry Violet and have the Bridgertons of the Netflix series.
The first book in this series follows his elder sister Billie Bridgerton. She is fearless and not interested in court life at all. She wants to run around all day and manage her family home forever. But her mother and mother’s best friend – Lady Rokesby – have other ideas. When Billie is caught on a roof by George Rokesby, the eldest of the Rokesby clan Billie isn’t happy. She much prefers his younger brothers, as he’s way too stuck up. And George thinks she’s too wild… guess what happens.
At work, we have a book club where we read LGBT and Diverse fiction and non-fiction monthly, as a way to expand our horizons and mindset. The Gender Games was May’s pick and it was truly excellent. I listened to the audiobook and I highly recommend it as Juno Dawson narrates it really well. It’s not only incredibly detailed and full of learnings, but it’s also very funny and readable.
The second in the Rokesby series follows Edward Rokesby who was missing in action in the last book of the series. However, when we start The Make-Believe Husband we find him being tended to by his best friend’s sister in a military hospital in New York, and he has amnesia. His best friend, Thomas Harcourt is missing, and apparently, before Edward lost his memory, he married Cecelia Harcourt. Of course, we the reader know that this is not true. Cecelia lied to get into the hospital and look after Edward, in order to get his help with finding her missing brother. But now she’s stuck in the lie and doesn’t know how to get out of it. And Edward is falling for her…
The third book in the Rokesby series follows the third Rokesby brother, Andrew. At the end of the first book, he was a Naval Officer. But now, seven-year later, he is working as a spy for the King, but cannot tell anyone. He pretends to be a Privateer – a posh word for a pirate – in order to send messages across Europe. But when Poppy Bridgerton, a cousin of his old neighbours who he’s never met, stumbles across his pirate hoard on land, she is kidnapped and brought on board his ship. Now he has to keep his real identity a secret, his real task a secret, and not fall in love with her…
I recently discovered that Jodie Chapman is from the same area where I grew up and her debut novel Another Life is set in my hometown. As such, I jumped at the chance to read her novel in June 2021 and I loved it. It was a truly exciting experience to read a story set in my hometown, visiting places that I went to as a child and thought were my secret places. It’s like Normal People set in Ashford. Nick and Anna have a short romance when he was 22 and she was 19, but she’s a Jehovah’s Witness and could never marry an outsider. But later on, they reunite and the feelings are still there, but Anna is married and Nick is trying to move on. The story is set from Nick’s perspective and it’s truly an emotional ride. I loved it.
After many a moon, I finally picked up and read Heartstopper Vol. 1 by Alice Oseman and it was adorable. An LGBT love story about two boys at a Grammar School. It’s super sweet and I cannot wait to see what the rest of the series brings.
And finally, the last of the Rokesby series books. This story follows the younger Bridgerton sister – Aunt to the Bridgerton siblings from the series – and the youngest Rokesby son. After Georgie’s reputation is ruined by a horrible man, Nicholas is called down from Edinburgh to step up and become her husband to help her restore her good name. This story includes a lot of banter and three chapters about a caterwauling cat… not kidding. It was fun but not as good as other Julia Quinn books I’ve read.
And that is what I read in June 2021. What did you read last month? Let me know in the comments below.