I read 12 books in July, which surprised me because I traveled a lot last month and honestly thought I’d read more. Even so, 12 books in a month is nothing to be ashamed about. That’s still a lot of really good reading.
Of those, I gave one none non-fiction book a perfect grade.
The book is about Randall Woodfield, who was the boy next door type of serial killer. He killed at least 44 women along I-5 (hence, the nickname) before he was caught and convicted.
The book was good, but I don’t remember it being great. I think I was just overly excited to find a book by my favorite true crime author that I hadn’t read yet. Rule died in July 2015, and I really thought I’d read everything she had written.
I gave five fiction books a perfect grade, and there were themes that I didn’t notice until I was writing this post. Two of the books were about coping with rape and three were about trying to stay safe from abusive husbands. No need to analyze that. I just like dramatic books and thought it was ironic when I saw the theme emerging.
Lindsey Nash took her daughter and ran away from her abusive husband. The same night, her husband, Andrew, was driving under the influence, causing a wreck that killed a woman. He’s been in prison for 11 years.
Never Let You Go by Chevy Stevens begins with Andrew’s release, followed by his steps to form a relationship with his daughter and a series of frightening “coincidences” that Lindsey is certain he is responsible for.
Imagine this. A man drives his car into your house, and you discover that the garage you thought was your husband’s wood workshop is actually a torture chamber where he’s been murdering women.
That’s what happened to Gina Royal, a housewife with two children, who goes on the run, disguising her identity and that of her children to protect them from people who think she knew about her husband’s crimes and protected him.
When the trio ends up at Stillhouse Lake, Gina (now Gwen) begins to finally feel at home and like they might be able to stay for awhile. But then a dead woman is pulled from the lake and threatening letters begin arriving from her ex-husband, who is in jail for his crimes.
As a little added bonus to this book being fabulous, it’s free on Amazon Unlimited.
Maddy Malone was on her way home from a school play one night when a group of boys from her school pushed her into a wooded area and gang raped her.
Maddy never told anyone what happened that night, but the truth, including who the boys were (they wore masks from the play) begins to come out through an English class assignment to write a collaborative novel.
The Pain Eater by Beth Goobie is a difficult story to read, but it feels like an honest insight into a young girl trying to cope with being the victim of a terrible crime. I don’t think this book is considered YA, but it had that feel to it.
There’s no such thing as a perfect husband, buck Tess really thought she’d found one. Jim Beckett swept her off her feet. He was a handsome police officer who doted on her. She was thrilled when he asked her to marry him and took her away from her unhappy, abusive home life.
Two years later Tess helped put Jim behind bars for murdering 10 women. Jim vowed to make Tess pay for turning him in.
The Perfect Husband by Lisa Gardner is about Tess attempting to keep herself and her daughter safe from her killer husband after he escapes from prison. To do so, she enlists the services of an ex-marine who has a lot of problems of his own.
Amber Bryant and Tyler Hicks have been best friends since they were teenagers. They’re so close that they’ve always been just like family. Tyler even was Amber’s lifeline when she nearly died from an eating disorder.
But Tyler always has secretly loved Amber and hoped they would end up together.
Amber comes home to live for the summer after college graduation, then she plans to move with her fiance. While she’s home, she starts spending more time with Tyler. Then, one alcohol fueled night, Tyler does something that destroys their friendship forever.
It Happens All the Time by Amy Hatvany was a little slow for me at first, but I couldn’t put it down by the end. How do you respond when your best friend, who is like your brother, breaks your greatest trust? The book is difficult at times, but it makes you think.
There they are! My favorite books of July. I hope you find something on the list that you want to read.
As always, happy reading!