Fact: When I get away from the internet washing machine, I get more reading done. Generally speaking. Although, I have been known to just pass out at nine or look at on my phone before bed. Bad, Lani, bad!

Anyway, after reading a Western, I needed something different. In the past, Agatha Christie was my palate cleanser, my go-to author, or I’d gravitate towards historical fiction, but this time, I went wayyy back and grabbed a recommended read from one of you all.

And Then There Were None vibes

I was a little worried that it might be too much like Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, but it’s very much it’s own story. I enjoyed the different character perspectives. Writers that can pull this off really have my respect and admiration.

The Guest List by Lucy Foley takes place on an island off the coast of Ireland. But it’s pretty much been deserted, so everyone who is there has been invited for a wedding. Anyway, it’s a good murder mystery that grabbed my attention and kept it. Dark and atmospheric, Foley leads you down several roads that make you wonder who’s going to get axed and who’s dunnit.

One of the criticisms of The Guest List is none of the characters were likeable, which I find amusing considering the mood Foley was setting up and the genre. Nevertheless, I wanted something lighter afterwards, so I chose How Not To Die Alone by Richard Roper.

Andrew’s job is to go into people’s homes after they’ve died and try to find a next of kin or any contact information. It’s a bleak task, and Andrew’s lies have made a mess out of his life, but Roper’s humor keeps it from being too depressing. There was the right amount of details to make the story quirky, and it definitely went in directions I didn’t expect.

If you like to look at Goodreads, or read ratings, you’ll discover that both novels really had mixed reviews. As I alluded to earlier, some of them don’t make sense to me. Were these books amazing? No, but I enjoyed them for what they were. Someone remarked that Andrew was boring — and I’d say, that was the point. He’s this ordinary guy. Of course, he’s not, but it makes me wonder if folks are less forgiving about a book than they are a movie or series. What do you think?

Lastly, I’m including a book I read to my third graders. When I was a child, Bunnicula was a popular story. It became a series and later, a cartoon. In any case, it was one of those things that suddenly popped into my mind and luckily, I found a copy.

In the beginning, I wasn’t sure if the boys would take to it, but they definitely got into the story of Harold the dog, narrating, Chester the cat, and the mysterious Bunnicula! So, if you are looking for a fun read with the kids that no one else is probably thinking of, remember vampiric rabbits!

What did you read in June?

15 replies on “June 2022 Reading Roundup

  1. I honestly loved The Guest List. It was the first thriller I read after a long while and I loved how everything was so dark… especially the characters. Personally, only in a thriller am I okay with not liking any of the characters because that dislike/mistrust of all characters makes the story so much more exciting cause you don’t know who to trust. But I’m also pretty unforgiving about annoying characters.. I tried reading Layla by Colleen Hoover this month and the main lead was such an ass that I left the book after reading 65% of it. πŸ™ˆ


    1. When there are multiple characters, I don’t think you need to like them as much as when there’s only one. Multiple POV should move the story along and add perspective which can be fun. The main has to do the heavy lifting when there’s just one — so I totally understand why you’d abandoned a book where you didn’t like them. I feel the same way. Be weird or interesting enough, but if there’s a strong dislike, it’s a hard sell for me. Cheers!


  2. thanks for the update! my own reading for the month was ‘Whiskey when we’re dry,’ and ‘One Corpse too many’ by Ellis Peters. I really enjoyed the first third of ‘Whiskey…’ I guess I liked the loner story but by the time she hooked up with her brother and his all inclusive, rainbow-coalition gang I was getting kinda ” ‘scuse me farmer, I’m in the wrong joke” so I set the book aside about the half way point and started reading ‘Passin’ through’ by Louis L’Amour. But, also I read last month ‘One Corpse Too Many’ by Ellis Peters. it is the second in a series of murder mysteries set in the 12th century in what would become England. The protagonist is Brother Cadfael, a Crusader and sea captain who becomes a Benedictine monk/herbalist which helps him with forensics and human nature as he solves murders. it is the second in a long series written by a linguist/scholar and often uses archaic words which are interesting to look up. so, that was last month. Presently, I am still reading the Western and have begun ‘Trinity’ a historical novel of Ireland by Leon Uris (of Exodus fame but he seems rather forgotten nowadays). so y’all keep cool and take care, Pat

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I can understand how ‘Whiskey’ might be hard to get through. Although, it’s pretty PG since you stopped at the “rainbow-coalition gang” πŸ˜› — from then on I found it got quite tense leading up to the big end.

      ‘One Corpse’ sounds interesting. I’ll have to remember that one. Thanks, Pat!


  3. I’ve read How Not To Die Alone a couple of years ago and admit I don’t remember all of it but that I quite liked it and didn’t find it boring at all. Also very funny too, and that’s the kind of book I find myself drawn to more and more as the times get more and more serious…
    Totally agree about getting more reading done when not on the internet so much!! πŸ˜€
    I’ve read quite a lot of books in June, but will only mention two: “A deadly education” by Naomi Novik (well, and the sequel – both very good), and just started reading “A Relentless Moon (A Lady Astronaut Novel” by Mary Robinette Kowall (it’s the 3rd in this series, and the first 2 were awesome!! If you haven’t read those yet I think you’d like them very much too!). Here’s to more reading books than surfing the net! πŸ˜‰ xoxo

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for the recommendation! The series does sound right up my alley. And yes, here’s to more reading ❀


  4. I’ve not done a whole lot of reading lately, but I did finish Laura Coleman’s memoir, The Puma Years , which is the best book I’ve read in quite a while. It gave me a glimpse into a world and life completely removed from my own, and one I don’t have the slightest desire for. Yet, I was mesmerised.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Ah, Agatha Christie is my favorite escape go-to in the summer. As to your other point: I think because watching something doesn’t require you to use your own imagination or enter into any sort of interaction with the story, people find they can be more generous about visual mediums. Books by their nature make you do some work, so people expect to be repaid by certain standards of entertainment they set themselves.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hahahaha. What a great way to put it. I suppose we are less forgiving if something doesn’t match up to our imagination (on screen) than in our own heads? πŸ˜›

      Actually, to your point, we do invest more in books. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Howdy. Here’s a very good novel I read recently: An Actual Life, by Abigail Thomas. It’s narrated by a 19 year old mother and wife. She’s in a loveless marriage and, to a large extent, is stumbling through life. Neil S.

    Liked by 1 person

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