The books I read in August and September 2020 were all incredibly enjoyable – there wasn’t one dud in the bunch, which made it a fun two months of reading! Apparently I was on a major royal kick during the last two months because 3 out of the 5 books I read were royal related. The royal books were all a bit different though… I read Princess Diana’s biography, a fictional story about what the US would be like if we had a ruling royal family, and a fictional story based off of the lives of Will, Kate, and Harry.
Spoiler alert: I would recommend all three to anyone who loves the royals! I also read my dad’s book, Blood in the Low Country. Yes, my dad wrote a book! I’d classify it as a family drama with a bit of mystery involved. The book takes place in Charleston so if you love reading stories set in the south, then look no further! Finally, I read Elin Hilderbrand’s summer 2020 release and loved it too! I told you, lots of very fun, fast, enjoyable reads. Here’s to hoping I finish out 2020 with more great books!
Books I Read in August 2020
Blood in the Low Country by Paul Attaway
If Blood in the Low Country sounds familiar, it’s because my dad wrote this book! I shared a post dedicated to my dad’s book that includes an interview with my dad about his novel, the process of writing a novel, and what it is like to become a first time published author. I’m so proud of my dad and I thoroughly enjoyed his novel! The book is part family drama, part crime mystery, and an ode to the beauty of the low country through and through. It’s 1973 in Charleston, South Carolina. The protagonist of the book, Monty Atkins, has built a great life for himself with his wife, Rose, and his two boys, Eli and Walker. In one night, Monty’s world is turned upside down with a heartbreaking murder and devastating betrayal that leave him, his family, and the city of Charleston reeling. Monty must uncover a conspiracy of lies and decide what he will do to protect his family, which includes protecting the secret past of his wife, Rose… a past she has been striving for years to outrun and bury. The reader is left wondering, can Monty save his family, his business, and potentially his own life? I can tell you right now that, while reading this book, I didn’t see the ending coming (my dad gave me no spoilers!)! I always consider it a sign of a great book when the author keeps me guessing and is always one step ahead of me, the reader. I also loved being transported to a city I love, Charleston, but in another time and era. Go dad! Grade: A.
The Heir Affair by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan
If you’re looking for a fast fun beach read, then this is it! The Heir Affair is the sequel to The Royal We. I would say that you really have to read The Royal We first before reading The Heir Affair to follow the book. Consider this a great thing though because The Royal We is a fantastic read too (as I reviewed here). If I wasn’t 8 months pregnant, I think I would have read The Heir Affair in 72 hours because I was so invested in the characters (I’m just really sleepy at the end of the day right now). I was so excited to get into bed every night while reading this book because I couldn’t wait to dive into the story! I actually found myself setting my alarm a few minutes early in the mornings so I could read when I woke up because I had more energy then. The book is about Bex Porter and Prince Nick after their not-so-fairytale royal wedding. The public and the Queen are outraged so the twosome take measures to save their marriage, save their relationships with Nick’s brother Prince Freddie, and save their image with the world. All the while, the world is watching to see if a royal heir is in the couples’ future. Will the world and their family forgive them and will they be able to keep the royal line alive!? It sounds fluffy because it is but it’s so much fun! If you love the royals, then this is a highly entertaining fictional story about the royals that I definitely recommend. Grade: A-.
Majesty by Katherine McGee
Majesty is the sequel to American Royals. The concept behind American Royals and Majesty is so clever (part of me wishes it was real!). Imagine if George Washington became the king of America, instead of the president, and started the ruling House of Washington for his family. In the second installment of the series, Majesty, readers pick right back up with where American Royals left off with Princess Beatrice ascending the thrown after her father’s tragic passing. I thoroughly loved the character development in this book as we got to know Princess Beatrice and her sister, Princess Samantha, even more. I felt like the book was kind of divided in half with two of the narrators, Beatrice and Samantha, having woven together story lines while the other two narrators, Daphne and Nina, had their own woven together story lines. I really love Beatrice and how thoughtful she is as a character. While I was obsessed with her love story in book one (American Royals), I still found myself rooting for her new love story in this book two. Through a web of secrets and deceit, all of the four main characters seemed to find their way/get what was coming for them by the end so it was a really satisfying ending! If you love all things royal, then 100% add this book to your bedside table stack. I’d recommend it to anyone who loves a fresh, fun read. Grade: A-.
Diana: Her True Story – in Her Own Words by Andrew Morton
Diana: Her True Story – in Her Own Words came out in 1992 and was a BIG deal because Diana was completely involved in the book (although the public didn’t know it at the time) and because it really played a role in changing the perception of how people viewed the royal family in the 90s (not necessarily for the better). The 25th anniversary edition of the book includes a lengthy intro section in Princess Diana’s own words. I found this part of the book so intriguing! So many aspects of her life were so sad and it was heartbreaking to read and to think about how young she was when her boys lost her. The book dives into everything included Diana’s unhappy marriage to Prince Charles, Diana’s relationship with the Queen, her deepest fears, and her grandest dreams. I hadn’t read a biography in so long and I really enjoyed this one. Grade: B+.
28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand
There’s just something about the summer months that make me want to read an Elin Hilderbrand Nantucket book. The two really go hand in hand! I loved her summer release this year, 28 Summers. The book tells the story of Mallory and Jake and the one weekend they spend together every single summer for 28 summers. They have a special, intangible, great love that overcomes all odds for one weekend a year. Their love is their biggest secret until it starts to have ripple effects on those around them, including their families. This book tortured me in the best way. I simply couldn’t wait until the plot line would bring Mallory and Jake together, so the pages turned for me very quickly! I had such high hopes for them, which wasn’t how the book turned out. However, Hilderbrand managed to do the impossible and end the book not in the way I longed for but in a perfect way nonetheless. If you love Nantucket and could use a great love story, then pick up this read. I also seriously enjoyed reading the brief flashbacks to what the world was talking about in the 90s and early 2000s before each of Mallory and Jake’s 28 summers. It was such a fun trip down memory lane! Grade: A.
Get the books I read in August and September 2020:
Photography: These are photos I forgot to share by Edwin Eversole from May before my bump was really showing (!!).