Stories about dealing with change in the summertime

Summer And Summer Nights Edited by Stephanie Perkins - a video review and blog post. #bookbloggers #booklove #bookish #lbloggers

Summer Days and Summer Nights

Edited and with a story by Stephanie Perkins

This collection of stories set the stage for a magical summer. I read it a few weeks ago and I have not stopped thinking about it as it took me on a bit of a journey into my past.

As a teenager, I did a lot of talking and contemplating with friends. I honestly do not remember many of those conversations, but I do remember feeling like they were all very important. I remember thinking, “This may be the last time we do this…” In many cases I was right. While at the time we were incredibly close as soon as school ended we went on different paths and things changed. We changed, and we started new separate adventures. While the things we contemplated really did not turn out to be as important as we thought they were at the time, those memories continue to be important. I love them. This collection of short stories kind of reminded me of those deep conversations and mischievous evenings when we would snake out to party. All because that instance might be the last time. It was a magical time in my life and the magic of these stories took me back to those summer days and summer nights.  

Here is my short review of each story.

Summer And Summer Nights Edited by Stephanie Perkins - a video review and blog post. #bookbloggers #booklove #bookish #lbloggers

Head, Scales, Tongue, Tail by Leigh Bardugo

Narrated by Stina Nielsen

I have only read short stories from Leigh Bardugo. They have all been mystical and vivid and beautiful. This is no exception. I, unfortunately, did not understand this story. It was beautiful but obscure. I listened to it two times. I enjoyed them both, but I honestly do not understand the story. I think I need to read it on my own. Slowly. I work better that way sometimes.

Star Ratings

3/5 – Overall

4/5 – Narration

2/5 – Story

The End Of Love by Nina Lacour  - a video review  #bookbloggers #booklove #bookish #lbloggers

 

The End of Love by Nina LaCour

Narrated by Erin Moon.

More about this in my video review!

Star Ratings

5/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

5/5 – Story

 

Last Stand At The Cinegore by Libba Bray

Narrated by Christopher Gebauer.

If you’ve ever had a summer job that was filled with mischief, fun and wonderful experiences, I think you’ll love this story.

This is a spooky story about how an old cinema touches lives—especially those of its employees. Romance and adventure abound and everything sort of becomes a big mess. It’s so much fun!

Christopher Gebauer’s performance is perfect for this story. He is melancholic and subtly dramatic.

Star Ratings

4/5 - Overall

5/5 - Narration

4/5 - Story

 

Sick Pleasure by Francesca Lia Block

Narrated by Jessica Almasy.

This story gave me pause. It followed a group of close girlfriends. They were all headed in different directions after high school and they all knew that change was inevitable. They party as if time stands still, if only for that night, and befriend a group of mysterious boys who invite them to a house party. They attend. My heart started beating quite fast at this point. I personally do not think that going to a house party with a group of young men you do not know personally is a good idea. It often leads to big trouble. Things turn out okay though. One of them enjoys a beautiful evening with a beautiful boy and finds out a bit more about herself in the process.

Jessica Almasy is one of my favorite narrators for quirky paranormal romance novels. This is the first time I hear her narrate a more serious story. She was brilliant. I honestly could not believe that I was listening to Jessica Almasy. She kind of reminded me of a younger version of Juliet Stevenson in her delivery. 

Star Ratings

5/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

5/5 – Story

 

In Ninety Minutes, Turn North by Stephanie Perkins

Narrated by Cherise Boothe.

This was such a sweet story! I loved it so much!

Marigold is determined to save her ex-boyfriend, North, from leading a fruitless life at home. She is in her first year at university—learning, exploring and living on Ramen. She and her ex had talked about what life would be like if they went to college together and now she realizes that he needs her help to get his show on the road. Along the way, she discovers more about herself and her quest to save her ex ends up being a sweet enlightening journey.

Cherise Boothe did such a lovely job with this story. She gave both North and Marigold a lot of charisma.

Star Ratings

4/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

4/5 – Story

 

Souvenirs by Tim Federle

Narrated by Michael Bakkensen.

This is a story of two very different boys who are in love. One of them is older than the other hence he’ll be going off to college after the summer ends. Because everyone knows that long distance relationships do not work, they have preselected a breakup day.

I found this story to be sweet, sad and real. I think that we often give too much credence to the idea that long distance relationships do not last, but with so much technology at our fingertips what is the harm in trying? I think that sometimes we get ahead of ourselves and choose to believe the worst before it happens—but what if it does not happen. What if magic happens?

Michael Bakkensen was perfect in this book. My emotions were touched on a heightened degree as I felt as if though I were listening in on his thoughts as a friend.

Star Ratings

5/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

5/5 – Story

 

Inertia by Veronica Roth

Narrated by Stina Nielsen.

This story takes place in an alternate reality. I am not sure about how this world works but somehow you are able to talk to people who are about to pass, or people who are in sick and unconcious—I am not too clear. The method of communication is through a dreamlike state where you can reexperience memories with the person you are visiting. It is both a magical event and a sad experience.  

This is a dark hearty story. It talks about love, coping with grief and accepting that it is okay to take daily medication when needed.

Stina Nielsen provides the story a solemn mystical tone. Her heartfelt delivery adds beauty to the story.

Star Ratings

4/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

4/5 – Story

 

Love Is The Last Resort by Jon Skovron

Narrated by Christopher Gebauer.

This is a cheeky story. The tone of the narrator is that of a confidant charming boy who wants to assure you that this is not a love story, whatever you may think. While he personally doesn’t fall in love he definitely helps others along in their path towards connecting with love.

This story is full of different fun characters. It kind of reminds me of the summer-themed episodes from Saved by the Bell where the cast held summer jobs at a resort. Like in the show, the staff is as integral to the story as the guests in the hotel. I loved the tone and the story. I came away from this story feeling refreshed and so happy. 

Christopher Gebauer narrates this story with a bit of mischief and a confidant overtone. He is perfect.

Star Rating

5/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

5/5 – Story

 

Good Luck and Farewell by Brandy Colbert - a blog post. #bookbloggers #booklove #bookish #lbloggers (21).jpg

Good Luck And Farewell by Brandy Colbert

Narrated by Cherise Boothe.

Imagine losing your mom as a teenager. (I did not want to do so but I did, ever so slightly, and it was horrible.) Soon after a cousin steps up and becomes a mentor. Said cousin is four years older and now, a few years later, she is to move with her girlfriend to another state.  How do you cope? This is Rashida’s story.  

I was going to talk about this story as well as about The End Of Love but honestly, I would have had a hard time getting through it.

This is a beautiful and heartbreaking story. Cherise Boothe nails the tone of the story.

Star Rating

5/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

5/5 – Story

 

Brand New Attraction by Cassandra Clare

Narrated by Erin Moon.

Dark circus powered by a demon nearly overtaken by an evil genius. That is basically the premise of this story. It is magical and so-so fun! I really enjoyed the magic and randomness of this dark sweet story.

Star Rating

4/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

4/5 – Story

 

A Thousand Ways This Could All Go Wrong by Jennifer E. Smith

Narrated by Jessica Almasy.

A young girl falls in love with a random serious boy. He is focused, unsociable, handsome and autistic. He has so many wonderful qualities, which she clearly sees, and a few characteristics that can be managed but are a bit of a struggle to conform to. Will they get together? Take a guess….

Star Rating

4/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

4/5 – Story

The Map of Tiny Perfect Things by Lev Grossman

Narrated by Michael Bakkensen.

In this story, the world, or time, has a mind of its own. For some unknown reason, August 4th keeps on repeating itself. Mark is our main character and he seems to embrace this change of pace. He has taken up the challenge of reading through every book of interest, hence most of his time is spent in the library. On one particular day, he decides to go to the pool instead. He has been here before, but he does not really care for the sun or the pool. It is here where he notices a stunning colorful girl who is totally out of place. Not only is she out of place, but she is totally dazzling. Together they relive August 4th over and over and over again and along the way take note of all the tiny perfect things that happen throughout the day.  For example, a skater boy landing a jump after trying a number of times. Of course, there is a reason the world has taken up this stance…it is quite magical…and devastating.

I loved Michael Bakkensen’s performance. He was darling and I totally fell for him in this role.  

Star Ratings

5/5 – Overall

5/5 – Narration

5/5 – Story

Summer And Summer Nights Edited by Stephanie Perkins - a video review and blog post. #bookbloggers #booklove #bookish #lbloggers
Summer And Summer Nights Edited by Stephanie Perkins - a video review and blog post. #bookbloggers #booklove #bookish #lbloggers

What have you been up to this summer? Have you read any books that have charmed your soul?