Today, let’s look back on June and look forward to July.

Favourite June reads

I had a weird June. I read a handful of books that I loved, had a handful of DNFs, and everything in between was kind of meh. And given that I read 15 books in June (not counting the DNFs), that makes for a lot of meh. Fingers crossed for a better July.

My favourite few of the month are below. Just click on the images to be taken to the book’s Amazon page.

Fifteen Hundred Miles From the Sun by Jonny Garza Villa was a lovely young adult contemporary novel. Just so beautiful. This book is precious and full of found family and friendship and first love and believing in yourself and being true to yourself. I felt like I was right there with Jules as he experienced pain and fear and happiness. Do yourself a favour and read this.

The Witch King by H.E. Edgmon was awesome. I loved all of the queer rep, and I loved how interesting and unique every character was. Nobody was perfect, everyone was flawed, and, in their own ways, everyone acknowledges, to a point, that they are flawed and sometimes make mistakes and bad decisions. Wyatt, as our trans narrator of this story, is sarcastic and funny and self-deprecating, but is brutally honest with himself at the same time that he holds onto lies to make himself feel better…the same way most of us do. Just a fun young adult fantasy.

Another cute young adult contemporary novel was You’re the One That I Want by Simon James Green. There were some great themes in this book (toxic relationships, gaslighting, loving yourself the way you are) that will resonate with teens and adults alike, plus it was funny and the main character, Freddie, was so endearing. I mean, he’s a disaster, but he’s great.

Can you believe that Broken Silence by Felice Stevens was my first book by this author? I really enjoyed this low-angst, slow-burn, age-gap, teacher/student romance. It was just so lovely and…quietly nice? If that makes sense. I’ll definitely be checking out Felice’s back list.

Incendiary, and it’s sequel, Illusionary (not pictured) by Zoraida Cordova were great. I’d had the first book in this duology on my shelf for over a year and I’m so glad I finally read it. These were fun, lots of twists and turns, giving the reader that feeling of not knowing who to trust. Plus character growth and baddies getting their comeuppance!

Books I’m looking forward to reading in July

Indivisible by Daniel Aleman came in my May Rainbow Crate book box. It’s billed as “a timely, moving debut novel about a teen’s efforts to keep his family together as his parents face deportation.” I have a feeling it’s going to break my heart but I’m here for it!

The Lion of the Sea by Micheline Ryckman is the recently released second book in the Maiden Ship series. It’s got adventures on the high seas, romance, great characters, and magic! I so look forward to reading this sequel to last year’s The Maiden Ship. Plus, Micheline is a fellow Canadian indie author, so I’m happy to support her work. Plus, her artwork is amazing. Check her out at Whimisical Illustrations.

Okay. I have to be honest. I adored Rainbow Rowell’s Carry On…but the sequel, Wayward Son, left a lot to be desired. So to say that I have high expectations for Any Way the Wind Blows is putting it mildly. Fingers crossed, people. Fingers crossed.

I will be honest: I’ve only ever read one book by Jaclyn Osborn (Perfectly Us, which I ADORE!). Galen seems completely different from that one given it’s an urban fantasy, but it sounds great and I can’t wait to read it.

I’m so excited for Bennet, Pride Before the Fall by Anyta Sunday. I’ve so enjoyed the previous books in this series and this one looks like it’ll be just as charming and enjoyable.

On the writing front

Have you checked out my newest release, Keeping Kellan? It’s a character-driven slow-burn, friends to lovers romance, with the added trope of Brant being Kellan’s best friend’s younger brother. Plus there’s a dog named Ollie!

Brant Harkrader is done living by other peoples’ rules. He may not know exactly what he wants out of life, but he’s perfectly happy letting that question figure itself out while starting a new job as a tour guide.

Too bad the one thing he does want—his sister’s BFF—only sees him as a little brother.

Or so he thinks…

Kellan Shelby-Briggs has never shied away from going after what he wants. And what he wants is the important contract that will put his brand new company on the map—and Brant.

Too bad Kellan’s career keeps yanking him away just as things heat up between them.

Now that Brant is back in town—up close and personal in Kell’s living space—can they finally get the timing right to go after the love that has eluded them both for too long?

In other writing news, the first draft of Two-Man Team (Stick Side #5) is complete and with my beta readers. I have to say, I really adore this book. Stanton and Xappa (who you would’ve met in Risking the Shot, book four) are awesome together. I’ll freely admit that I don’t consider myself a humourous writer. Aside from the ocasional witty one-liner, I don’t think my books would be classified as funny. But Stanton and Xappa have some great banter if I do say so myself, and there were quite a few moments where I made myself chuckle. That can only be a good thing, right?

July will be spent working on my beta readers’ edits to the book before it goes to my editor later in the month. (Release day is still looking like September/October. I hope to have more information on that in early August.) Plus, I’ll be working on character bios and an outline for my next book, a secret project I can’t share much about yet but that you’ll see in early 2022. I’ll start writing this one within the next couple of weeks.

What books are you looking forward to reading in July? Leave a comment below!