June 2021 Reading: Assembly; The Mesmerist’s Daughter; Wounding; The Wolf Den; So The Doves; Grown Ups; Black Water Sister; Fallen; My Broken Language; The Sound Mirror

Assembly by Natasha Brown (2021)

For a short book, Assembly packs one hell of a punch. Formally inventive, hugely topical, and pulsing with energy and anger, this book is not to be missed. You can read my full review here.

The Mesmerist’s Daughter by Heidi James (2015)

Another short, powerful work, and the first of four books by Heidi James that I read in June. I’ve done a full post all about my Heidi James Month, so do check it out for more info on the works I read in June by this brilliant writer. The Mesmerist’s Daughter is a great place to start – a dark, unsettling novella that showcases her razor-sharp prose.

Wounding by Heidi James (2014)

My second Heidi James of the month. Wounding is, I think, a really important novel, which shows us a woman struggling to get to the heart of who she is, trapped by society’s expectations and her own life choices. It is subtly shocking, bold, and well worth reading.

The Wolf Den by Elodie Harper (2021)

This was our first pick for the Squadpod Book Club, and I loved reading it and chatting about it with my fellow bloggers. A vibrant, brilliant novel – I can’t wait for the next in the series. You can read my full review of The Wolf Den here.

So The Doves by Heidi James (2017)

My third Heidi James! I can see a lot of you really enjoying this one – it’s more plot-driven than her other works, but still written in prose that is both fierce and delicate at the same time. The cold case element will appeal to many, as will the complex, brilliantly drawn characters. Do check it out on my full post!

Grown Ups by Marie Aubert translated by Rosie Hedger (2021)

This month has been a great reminder that a book doesn’t need to be lengthy to have a massive impact. Grown Ups is a great read, spotlighting the sibling relationship in a way that I haven’t really seen done before. You can read my full review here.

Black Water Sister by Zen Cho (2021)

This is a really original and fun novel with YA vibes. It took me a little while to get into it, but once I had, I really enjoyed it. Ghosts, gods, and fast-paced adventure – this book is jam-packed with entertainment. You can read my full review here.

Fallen by Mel O’Doherty (2021)

Fallen takes a shocking slice of Irish history and weaves a deeply moving, beautifully told story. Another gem from Bluemoose Books. My full review of this powerful novel is here.

My Broken Language by Quiara Alegría Hudes (2021)

This memoir is going to be one of my top reads of 2021. I absolutely loved it – Hudes writes with fizzing energy, honesty and intellect, and the result is a captivating chronicle of the search for a voice of her own. You can read my full review of My Broken Language here.

The Sound Mirror by Heidi James (2020)

One of my top reads of last year, this was the final Heidi James I (re)read in June, and I think it probably remains my favourite book of hers. Definitely rewards multiple reads. You can read my original review from last year here.

I feel like I am reading a little bit slower at the moment, but I am still really pleased by what I have read in June. There are plenty I didn’t manage to get to, as always, and I still have loads of highly anticipated reads staring at me from the TBR bookcases. Yes, cases, plural. I know, I know. But I am gradually learning to be at peace with the fact that I just can’t read ALL the books, and the most important thing is to enjoy what I do manage to read – and on that score, mission accomplished!

Happy reading!

Ellie x


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