So here are the books I’m planning to read during the challenge this month, a mixture of physical and ebooks. Fortunately 3 of them are also on my #20BooksofSummer list, a rather cunning plan don’t you think? 😉
Here are the rules
We will be hosting TWO twitter chats one on August 7th and one August 28th. Both chats will start at 8pm EST and of course we’ll be using our #ARCAugust tag.
We will be hosting a few authors for interviews and giveaways so make sure to check back our blog regularly for that! Of course, we’ll be tweeting about all of it so make sure to follow the #ARCAugust tag.
Special Note From Octavia
Remember, ARC August has always been about having fun first and finishing ARCs second. Remember this as you tackle your piles, and use the tag to keep each other motivated. Unlike most years, this ARC August I’ll be sitting on the sidelines for the most part. I haven’t requested or received an ARC in ages! But this just means I’ll have more time this year to focus on YOU! So be prepared for lots of caps in your time lines and an unrelenting amount of cheering.
“The Girlfriend by Michelle Frances is a gripping and chilling debut psychological thriller, based on the fall-out following an unforgivable lie. It looks at the potentially charged relationship between girlfriend, boyfriend and his mother, which most women can identify with, and locates it in an extreme but believable setting. A girl. A boy. His mother. And the lie she’ll wish she’d never told. Laura has it all. A successful career, a long marriage to a rich husband, and a twenty-three year-old son, Daniel, who is kind, handsome, and talented. Then Daniel meets Cherry. Cherry is young, beautiful and smart but she hasn’t had the same opportunities as Daniel. And she wants Laura’s life. Cherry comes to the family wide-eyed and wants to be welcomed with open arms, but Laura suspects she’s not all that she seems. When tragedy strikes, an unforgivable lie is told. It is an act of desperation, but the fall-out will change their lives forever.”
A very clever story with not particularly likeable characters in it. It was a bit slow to begin with but as I kept reading it got more twisted. My loyalties kept changing between the main characters, one minute I felt sorry for them and the next I despised them. I could image this working well as TV series or a film. I definitely recommend this if you enjoy psychological thrillers. I look forward to seeing what the author writes next.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and Pan MacMillan for my digital copy.
“After Kim and her husband decide to quit their jobs to travel around the world, they’re given a yellow envelope containing a check and instructions to give the money away. The only three rules for the envelope: Don’t over think it; share your experiences; don’t feel pressured to give it all away.
Through Ecuador, Peru, Nepal, and beyond, Kim and Brian face obstacles, including major challenges to their relationship. As she distributes the gift to people she encounters along the way she learns that money does not have a thing to do with the capacity to give, but that giving—of ourselves—is transformational.”
I really enjoyed this travel memoir with a difference. I loved the author’s wonderful descriptions of the countries she visited, making me feel as if I was on the journey with her. Although difficult to read at times, I did enjoy her honesty about her emotions and feelings toward her husband and their marriage. The dilemma about about who and how to share the yellow envelope money with was fascinating, I could imagine myself feeling the same way in each situation.
I definitely recommend this if you enjoy travel writing and memoirs and for those who enjoyed Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and Source books for my digital copy.
“What do you cook for the people you love? Asked this question, 100 of Britain’s food heroes have shared their most beloved recipes to make this extraordinary cookbook. Nigella Lawson divulges how to bake her Chocolate Guinness Cake and Rick Stein fries up Shrimp & Dill Fritters with Ouzo. Yotam Ottolenghi would serve Pea & Mint Croquettes and for Jamie Oliver, an unrivalled Fantastic Fish Pie. These are just a few of the incredible recipes provided by the best and brightest on the British food scene, including chefs such as Raymond Blanc, Gordon Ramsay, Delia Smith, James Martin, Nigel Slater, Thomasina Miers, Mark Hix, Jason Atherton, Marco Pierre White, Claudia Roden and more.
Compiled by award-winning food editor and author William Sitwell, The Really Quite Good British Cookbook is keenly anticipated and a stunning object in its own right. Ultimately it is a celebration of the breadth, creativity and richness of Britain’s unique food culture.”
I’m always on the look out for inspiration in the kitchen, particularly for midweeks meals when all the familiar cookbooks seem incredibly boring. This is a beautifully compiled collection of recipes shared by very well known ‘celebrity’ chefs and ‘new to me’ chefs from all over in Britain.
The recipes themselves are accompanied by deliciously tempting photographs and the instructions are clear and easy to understand. I particularly liked the information about preparation and cooking time, how many servings and the skill level required.
If you consider yourself a foodie and in need of some kitchen inspiration I’d definitely recommend this for you. Plus the cover is designed by Sir Peter Blake founder of the Pop Art movement and a portion of the royalties will go towards The Trussell Trust, a charity that runs a food bank network in the UK.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and Nourish for my digital advanced readers copy.
“My name is Amber Reynolds. There are three things you should know about me:
1. I’m in a coma.
2. My husband doesn’t love me anymore.
3. Sometimes I lie.”
Well this book really messed with my head, but in a good way. It’s one of those books that just as you get to grips with one aspect of the plot and the characters it all shifts and you just don’t know who or what to believe. It’s told in flashbacks from Amber’s hospital bed before the coma, in the coma and diary entries from when she was a child. It was very visual and I could imagine it working very well as a film or TV series.
This was really well done and definitely a must read if you enjoy psychological thrillers with so many twists and turns and a chilling ending.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and HQ HarperCollins UK for my free digital Advanced Readers Copy.
“Some discoveries are better left unmade.
Peter thought he was done with grave robbing, but when a former business partner lures him out to Dungarradh, a small Scottish island with a big secret, he finds himself waist deep in more than local folklore. Is the disappearance of his team-mate truly the work of the legendary fae, or is a sinister force at play?
A brand-new tale of dark fantasy and horror, from the bestselling author of WHAT HIDES WITHIN and SEEING EVIL.”
I don’t normally read horror stories, but after reading a Standalone Sunday post by Megan@bookslayereads of another book by the author, I was persuaded to give this novella a go.
This novella was a fun read with a good pace and plot that kept me wanting to find out what was going to happen. There was a bit of swearing though, so if you don’t like the use of the ‘F’ word it’s not for you.
Thanks to NetGalley and Corpus Press for my digital arc.
“Just how much can you trust the person you love?
Everything but the Truth is Gillian McAllister’s stunning breakthrough thriller about deceit, betrayal and one woman’s compulsive need to uncover the truth
It all started with the email.
Rachel didn’t even mean to look. She loves Jack and she’s pregnant with their child. She trusts him.
But now she’s seen it, she can’t undo that moment. Or the chain of events it has set in motion.
Why has Jack been lying about his past? Just what exactly is he hiding? And doesn’t Rachel have a right to know the truth at any cost?”
What a fantastic thriller and a debut too!
This a beautifully written book with an intimate feel to it, as though the main character, Rachel, was a close friend confiding in me.
At times it was so intense that I had to put it down and have a breather, but it wasn’t long before I had to pick it up again and find out what else there was to discover about Jack. I cringed and shook my head as she went deeper and deeper and kept asking myself if I would do the same?
I can’t recommend this enough if you enjoy psychological thrillers that completely immerse you in the main characters lives.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and Penguin UK – Michael Joseph for my digital advanced readers copy.
“Karen Bloom is not the coddling mother type. She believes in raising her children for success. Some in the neighbourhood call her assertive, others say she’s driven, but in gossiping circles she’s known as: the tiger mother. Karen believes that tough discipline is the true art of parenting and that achievement leads to ultimate happiness. She expects her husband and her children to perform at 200 percent—no matter the cost. But in an unending quest for excellence, her seemingly flawless family start to rebel against her.
Her husband Noel is a handsome doctor with a proclivity for alcohol and women. Their prodigy daughter, Bronte, is excelling at school, music lessons, dance classes, and yet she longs to run away. Verity, Noel’s teenage daughter from his first marriage, is starting to display aggressive behaviour. And Karen’s son from a previous relationship falls deeper into drug use. When tragedy strikes the Blooms, Karen’s carefully constructed façade begins to fall apart—and once the deadly cracks appear, they are impossible to stop.
A thrilling tale of ambition and murder, Daly’s richly imagined world of suburban striving and motherly love is an absorbing page-turner about the illusions of perfection and the power games between husband and wife, parent and child.”
I was thrilled to get approved on NetGalley for this book as I devoured the author’s debut ‘Just What Kind of Mother Are you?’ I was disappointed that I didn’t experience the same roller-coaster of emotions with Trophy Child, although I loved the mystery element to this domestic noir. I had long list of suspects on my list, but none of them were correct, which really was a surprise. I definitely recommend this if you enjoy a slow burner of a read with very flawed characters.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and Grove Atlantic for my digital arc.
From the #1 “New York Times” bestselling author of “Me Before You” and “After You,” a sensational collection featuring the title novella and eight other stories. Quintessential Jojo Moyes, “Paris for One and Other Stories” is an irresistibly romantic collection filled with humour and heart.
Nell is twenty-six and has never been to Paris. She’s never even been on a romantic weekend away to anywhere before. Everyone knows travelling abroad isn’t really her thing. But when Nell’s boyfriend fails to show up for their romantic mini-vacation, she has the opportunity to prove everyone including herself wrong. Alone and in Paris, Nell uncovers a version of herself she never knew existed: independent and intrepid. Could this turn out to be the most adventurous weekend of her life?
Funny, charming, and irresistible, “Paris for One”is vintage Moyes as are the other stories that round out the collection.”
A wonderful collection of short stories that made me feel good and put a smile on my face. Jojo Moyes really knows how to add the sparkle to real characters in normal situations without being cringey. This is a collection that I’ll definitely be returning to again and again in the future.
Thanks so much to NetGalley and Penguin UK-Michael Joseph for my advanced digital copy.