It’s the last Monday of the month–you know what that means! Personalized recommendations based on books you already know and love!
This month, we’re featuring new June releases paired with older releases so you’ll be able to stay on top of what currently hot in the bookish world, while also revisiting old favorites. There’s a bunch of contemporaries here, so if you’re a contemporary fan, this one’s for you!
Now, without further ado, here are 5 sets of books that you’ll hopefully end up loving! As always, the recommendations work both ways! Let’s get started.
If you liked Blood and Sand, then you’ll love The Bird and the Blade!
Honestly, I’m surprised this is such a niche genre, because so many amazing books are part of this sub sub sub genre. (Idk how many subs.) It’s that historical fiction novel with a very strong fictional-non-magic twist that everyone calls fantasy but really isn’t.
Blood and Sand, a genderbent Spartacus retelling (!!!), features Ancient Rome with gladiators and female warriors and all sorts of action-packed shenanigans. Meanwhile, The Bird and the Blade is set in 13th century Asia and the Mongols and is frankly quite amazing. There’s a bunch of delightful humor and witty banter between the characters, as well as a bunch of suspense. Oh! Did I also mention it’s another unusual retelling, this time of the opera Turandot?! (I DO NOT recommend you look up the opera’s ending until you read the book. Just don’t do it.)
Both of these books are super awesome and extremely entertaining while also being EXCEPTIONALLY CRUEL TO US READERS. I can’t believe we have to wait till 2019 for the sequel to Blood and Sand. BLASPHEMY. AND THE BIRD AND THE BLADE IS LITERALLY THE CRUELEST BOOK EVER. You will cry. You will rage. You will hate Megan Bannen with all your guts and wish a billion things were different.
Ok, so maybe I don’t recommend them. You’ll get your heart broken, but it’s a good type of heartbreak, really.
If you liked Saints and Misfits, then you’ll love Not the Girls You’re Looking For!
This is the one that might be a kind of a stretch, because I haven’t read Not the Girls You’re Looking For yet. But, I think I chose well in picking Saints and Misfits rather than A Girl Like That, and here’s why.
Although based on reviews, Not the Girls You’re Looking For does get a little bit dark, I don’t think it’s as deadly as that of A Girl Like That. It seems like the darkness is a little spoilery, so I don’t know much about it yet, but I feel like Saints and Misfits just makes a good thematic comparison.
These books both feature very heavily culture in them, which was one of the reasons why I drew the connection, and also the sort of female protagonist that has a certain type of attitude of independence and individualism, which I think a lot of people will love.
So although this isn’t a definite comparison, I think this is a pretty solid connection between these books, and one I hope proves to be true because Saints and Misfits is a wonderful read!
If you liked Starry Eyes, then you’ll love Invisible Ghosts!
Are you a contemporary romance lover? Then you’re in the right place!
Both of these contemporary romances featuring long ago best friends will seriously melt your heart in all the right places. I mean, yeah, there’s some regular angst, but you know your cuties are gonna end up together and that’s good enough for me.
Starry Eyes is just so awesome and atmospheric because camping! Even though outdoorsy activities for more than a couple hours is like, ew gross, I don’t mind living vicariously through book characters who enjoy things like camping! And seriously, camping takes on a whole ‘nother meaning with Zorie and Lennon.
As for Invisible Ghosts, it has that same atmospheric feel, but with the quirk of our protagonists being able to see ghosts! Can I get a le gasp? There’s a lot in store for Rose and Jamie in this book, and they’ve certainly got a lot to learn about the supernatural, as normal as it may seem.
If you liked either of these books, I totally recommend the other for those romantic feels as well as a one-element centric atmosphere that’s honestly so fun to read about!
If you liked Puddin’, then you’ll love Fat Girl on a Plane!
Millie and Cookie both know how to own how they look and who they are, no matter what size.
I mean, it’s obvious that these books both share really positive fat representation, but I didn’t pair them together just for that reason (I mean, I could have totally picked Dumplin’ or any other book with fat rep instead). I paired these two together because of that feeling you get throughout the book that these characters are entirely comfortable in their own skins, no matter what you might think about their sizes.
And both Millie and Cookie appreciate fashion in their own ways. Cookie as she strives to make plus-sized clothing accessible to everyone, and Millie as she embraces her own quirky style, not matter what anyone else says about her.
There are a lot of thematic similarities between these books, as well as structural ones as both switch from two different narratives (POV in Puddin’, timeline in Fat Girl on a Plane). I definitely recommend you check both of these books out!
If you liked Once and For All, you’ll love Save the Date!
There’s one really glaringly obvious similarity in both of these books: weddings.
Both of these contemporaries feature weddings, and it’s honestly such a fun topic to read about? I mean, weddings are almost always a near-disaster (at least, fictionally they are) and it gives a certain type of fun, chaotic atmosphere.
Plus, weddings always bring a certain type of atmosphere to a book, and this atmosphere is totally found in both novels. Although Save the Date is a little more chaotic and goofy and family oriented, while Once and For All is more romance-centric, I think both of these are great contemporary reads to consider if you liked the other.
You can’t go wrong with family or romance.
Which June releases would you add to the list & make a comparison with?
(Also, totally appreciate if someone could verify my comp of Saints and Misfits and Not the Girls You’re Looking For! Thanks!)