Books I Read in August & You Should Read Them If…

Happy Friday! August wasn’t the most bookworm-y of months for me, but in the last few days of the month I was suddenly hit with an urge to read ALL. THE. BOOKS. so I finished a few that I was about halfway through (and read a short novella) in the span of two days. It was that reading sprint that made this post possible. I also had a varied reading month two days, so you’ll see a decent mix in this roundup: nonfiction, mysteries, a classic, and something a little different. I’d also love to know what you read in August–or are interested in reading in September–so let me know in the comments. Some might say there is such a thing as to big of a TBR list, but I’m not sold on that idea. 😉

Note – Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, which means that I’ll receive a small percentage of any purchase you make using them at no extra cost to you. This helps me to keep this blog running. I received some of these books for review from the publisher. I’ll state which books were sent to me in the review–and it’ll be listed in the link to my original review as well. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting Dreams, etc.!

A roundup of book reviews from August 2017 and you should read them if... There's a mix of nonfiction, classics, mysteries, & something a little different! //

Talking As Fast As I Can by Lauren Graham

Lauren Graham, of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood fame, shares a behind-the-scenes look at life when she was growing up and trying to make her to Hollywood, as well as life on the sets of her hit shows.

I’m usually a little wary when it comes to celebrity memoirs. More often than not I’m just not interested in a celebrity enough to read their memoirs and sometimes I’m afraid I’ll lose what interest I had after I read it. (Kinda like following celebs on Twitter. I’m really hesitant to follow any celebrity on Twitter, because they usually end up really bugging me.) But in EVERY interview I’ve seen with Lauren Graham she’s come off as so down-to-earth and sincere. And that’s the vibe that I got from this book too. I loved the look into her childhood and her early years in acting. She touches on a lot of fantastic topics–like diet and exercise in one chapter that was hilarious and SO TRUE! I also loved the behind-the-scenes look at Gilmore Girls, Parenthood, and the Gilmore Girls reboot. She infused each chapter with the perfect blend of humor and seriousness. This was a total joy to read… or listen to, which is what I did. Graham narrates the audiobook (of course), and she did a fantastic job (of course).

You Should Read This If You…

>> Enjoy celebrity memoirs
>> Are a fan of Gilmore Girls or Parenthood
>> Love Lauren Graham

The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes by David Handler

I received a copy of this book from the publisher. Novelist-turned-ghost writer Stewart “Hoagy” Hoag is contacted when one of the daughter’s of a once popular novelist receives a letter supposedly written by her father, who went into hiding after his wife’s death. Monette is a lifestyle queen (a la Martha Stewart) whose empire is slipping away, so Hoagy (along with his trusty sidekick, his basset hound Lulu) travels to her estate in an attempt to see if the letter is real or a fake. After her sister (and once the love of Hoagy’s life) arrives with a letter of her own, murder strikes in Monette’s household and Hoagy must investigate the crime.

This was such a fun thriller! I loved the characters–particularly Hoagy and Lulu. It felt really noir-inspired and had a lot of Clue-vibes. It was so much fun to read. I posted a more detailed review last week.

You Should Read This If You…

>> Are looking for a mystery that’s more on the funny side than the thriller/scary side
>> Are interested in noir-inspired story with Clue-like vibes
>> Enjoy stories that prominently feature dogs

Forest of Memory by Mary Robinette Kowal

I’m not going to be able to describe this book as well as the official synopsis, so go check it out on Goodreads.

This was such a fascinating little novella. It’s very, very short. Under 100 pages. I loved the sense of mystery as Katya tried to figure out what was going on. I thought this book was both just enough, but also would have loved more. Such a fun read.

You Should Read This If You…

>> Are interested in a story with a futuristic and mysterious vibes.
>> Love a short read.

Dark Saturday by Nicci French

I received a copy of this book from the publisher. Hannah Docherty was convicted of the brutal murder of her family when she was 18 and has been held at a psychiatric hospital ever since. When psychotherapist Frieda Klein is asked to visit Hannah for an evaluation, she’s horrified by what she sees. Years of being kept on her own in the facility have taken their toll on Hannah and Frieda can’t shake the feeling that Hannah might be innocent of the crime, and just as much of a victim as the rest of her family. Frieda starts to investigate and is soon convinced that the real murderer is still out there and will be willing to kill again to prevent an investigation from going further.

I’ve been in the mood for thrillers lately (although, let’s be real… when am I not in the mood for thrillers?), so I enjoyed this read. It’s a slower-paced thriller and I felt like there were some parts that were unnecessary, however there are so many different pieces to this mystery that I was always excited to see what was coming next. This is part of a series, which I didn’t know when I picked it up, however it’s also said that this book can stand on its own. That’s definitely true. If I hadn’t been aware this was a handful of books into a series, I don’t think I would have noticed, however there are definitely some indications–particularly when it comes to Frieda and references to her past. That being said, I think there’s one plot point that would have hit me harder if I had read previous books in the series. I can’t say that for sure, but my guess is it’s a running theme throughout the series. I feel like this is coming off as a bit of lukewarm review, but I did enjoy it and have an interest in the rest of the series. The finale is coming out next summer and I’d definitely like to read the rest of the series before it does so that I can read the finale when it comes out.

You Should Read This If…

>> You enjoy slow-paced psychological thrillers that aren’t necessarily going to scare you (probably), but will keep you guessing until the very last pages.

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

Anne Shirley is mistakenly adopted by the Cuthbert’s–they were looking for a boy–but she works her way into their hearts.

I think this is actually the first time I’ve read the book. I have the boxed set of Anne of Green Gables books, but I had to listen to this one since Rachel McAdams narrates it. (She’s fantastic and I highly recommend her audiobook!) I don’t know what else to say about this one, other than I find Anne to be absolutely delightful and I think this is a fun story to read. I didn’t realize how much time is covered in this story, but I’m definitely excited to continue to continue the series. As soon as I finished this I had to track down the miniseries that I remember watching as a child. I have the discs from the library and I’m excited to go through them!

You Should Read This If You…

>> Enjoy classics
>> Want to read about the adventures of Anne Shirley.

Have you read any of these? What books did you read in August?

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A roundup of book reviews from August 2017 and you should read them if... There's a mix of nonfiction, classics, mysteries, & something a little different! //

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  • Reply
    Kimberly M
    September 8, 2017 at 12:22 pm

    Come to think of it, August is when I slow down my reading too! I wonder why that is?? I usually pick up speed in September.
    OOOOOh Dark Saturday sounds mysterious just by the title. It probably wouldn’t be a book that I’d read just by the fact that the character is locked in a hospital – I’m a mental health patient/advocate and I steer clear from books that perpetuate stigma.
    I have never read Anne Of Green Gables but I have always wanted to! One day I will!

  • Reply
    Shann Eva
    September 8, 2017 at 12:57 pm

    I loved the mini series of Anne of Green Gables. I don’t think I’ve ever read the books, but I really would like to. I started the Lauren Graham book, but I had it from the library, and didn’t get to finish before it was due. I think the audio book sounds like a great option..I love her!

  • Reply
    Deryn | Running on Real Food
    September 8, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    Good suggestions..I almost never read fiction so it’s good to get a couple ideas. Thank you!

  • Reply
    Beth Kondrick
    September 8, 2017 at 1:35 pm

    I love Lauren Graham’s book so much! I think she’s my kindred spirit though. Speaking of kindred spirits, I adore Anne of Green Gables so much! Some friends and I are actually planning a 40th birthday trip to Prince Edward Island in five years, no joke!

  • Reply
    Brittany Daoud
    September 8, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    Loved Anne of Green Gables! Such a good book!

  • Reply
    September 8, 2017 at 3:03 pm

    I definitely want to read Forest of Memory. It sounds really interesting. Thanks for sharing. I hope you have a great weekend.

  • Reply
    September 8, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    I’ve wanted to read Nicci French’s series since Blue Monday, so I must get started. I’m glad you could read this one as a stand-alone though.

    Thanks for sharing!!


  • Reply
    September 8, 2017 at 4:10 pm

    I ABSOLUTELY loved your way of book reviews!! I think I’ll enjoy many of these books, but mainly The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes & Forest of Memory! I recently read Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven. My style of reviewing is a lot different than yours though! I loved the ‘You should read this if’ section! 🙂

  • Reply
    Kayla Rivoli
    September 8, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    I’ve been trying to read more classics lately but I’m working on finishing the Harry Potter series first! I’ve never read it all the way through. I really want to read Lauren Graham’s book, I haven’t watched a lot of Gilmore Girls but Parenthood was one of my favorite shows!

  • Reply
    Melanie Lifessweetwords
    September 8, 2017 at 8:00 pm

    I don’t know how I have managed to go this long without reading Anne of Green Gables, but I really want to change that soon! Maybe it’s because I was too busy reading ghost stories as a kid haha; The Girl with the Kaleidoscope Eyes sounds right up my alley!

  • Reply
    September 8, 2017 at 8:55 pm

    You had a really good reading month! I have heard about David Handler’s mysteries for a while and want to try them at some point. Also, yay for Anne of Green Gables! I read it for the first time about 10 years ago and loved it. I still want to dive into the rest of the series.

  • Reply
    September 8, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    Dark Saturday sounds really good! I loved All The Missing Girls. I am currently reading The Perfect Stranger and it’s really good so far!

  • Reply
    Rachel Ritlop
    September 9, 2017 at 7:01 am

    Several of those sound really interesting! I need to add them to my list for next time I go to the library.

  • Reply
    Kristin Cook
    September 9, 2017 at 7:30 am

    I’ve never read Anne of Green Gables either, which is crazy! I also have thought about reading Lauren Grahams book!

  • Reply
    Alix Maza
    September 9, 2017 at 12:36 pm

    Totally added ‘The Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes’ to my TBR list!

  • Reply
    September 9, 2017 at 1:08 pm

    ALWAYS looking for new reads!! All of these sound amazing and now my MUST READ list for Fall has doubled in size thanks to you! LOL

  • Reply
    Lisa @ Lisa Lately
    September 9, 2017 at 6:01 pm

    I’m also reading Lauren Graham’s book! I loved Gilmore Girls. 🙂 Right now I’m reading Brene Brown’s “Daring Greatly.”

  • Reply
    September 9, 2017 at 10:10 pm

    My sister just read that Lauren Graham book and now I want to read it, sounds like a good one! Anne of Green Gables is a favorite of mine!

  • Reply
    September 10, 2017 at 5:57 am

    I loooooove Anne of Green Gables!! This makes me want to read it again!

  • Reply
    The Salty Mamas
    September 10, 2017 at 4:39 pm

    OOoh, I wanna read that Dark Saturday one! Love these recommendations – can’t wait for your September list!

  • Reply
    Erica @ Coming up Roses
    September 10, 2017 at 5:22 pm

    Omg I need to read Lauren graham’s asap!!!!! Sounds fabulous.

  • Reply
    Kate • The Gold Sister
    September 10, 2017 at 11:28 pm

    I keep hearing about Anne of Green Gables lately for some reason, so I’m taking this review popping up to mean that it’s time I invest in the book!! Thanks for sharing!

    Kate |

  • Reply
    Jillian Elizabeth
    September 11, 2017 at 10:39 am

    LOVE “Anne of Green Gables” It takes me right back to my childhood. My mom was good about introducing us to classics. <3

  • Reply
    Shani Ogden
    September 11, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    This looks like such a great round up of books! I’m interested in checking out The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes because I like thrillers/mysteries, but definitely prefer a more funny side than scary. I’ve been reading through Harry Potter this month, haha. Just finished book 5 last night.

  • Reply
    T-Nicole Johnson
    September 11, 2017 at 1:01 pm

    These look like some really great reads. Thanks for sharing your review on them. I have to checkout “Talking As Fast As I Can” by Lauren Graham. This would be the perfect book to conclude my summer reading list.

  • Reply
    Kyla Matton Osborne
    September 11, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    I love LM Montgomery’s books, but I must admit I haven’t read any of them in some time. I do love the new TV adaptation, though! I’m looking forward to the upcoming second season. If you haven’t watched it, look for “Anne with an E” on Netflix in the US. Or you can catch it on the CBC’s on-demand video listings, simply under “Anne.”

  • Reply
    Corey Wheeland
    September 11, 2017 at 1:31 pm

    I think I need to check out Dark Saturday – sounds like it one just up my alley!

  • Reply
    Beth Reynolds
    September 11, 2017 at 10:00 pm

    I love the added “you should red this if…” in your reviews. Smart and unique way to review books 🙂

  • Reply
    September 12, 2017 at 6:29 am

    sounds like a fun list of books and i might need to head back to read anne of green gables again (:

  • Reply
    September 12, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    I need to check out Dark Saturday! I’ve also been on a thriller kick lately!

  • Reply
    Heather Brandon
    September 15, 2017 at 10:22 pm

    I loved the Anne of Green Gables series so much as a child. I still have my box set I got for my 9th birthday sitting on my bookshelf waiting for my daughter to grow into them.

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