What I Read in July

My reading has slowed down recently, mostly because I’m stuck reading a slow book I hope to be through by the time I recap my August reading. But I did finish three books in July.

“Still Missing”, Chevy Stevens

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This is the story of a woman who is abducted while showing a house for sale. She’s missing a year and eventually escapes but has to cope with reintegrating into society after being isolated for so long. While trying to adjust she begins to learn more about why this happened to her. This is nearly as shocking as what happened while she was held captive, which is revealed through sessions with a therapist.

It’s appropriate that the author of “Gone Girl” gave an endorsement that appears on the cover of this book, because this book reminded me of “Gone Girl” with its twists that made my mouth drop open at times. But unlike “Gone Girl”, I found the end of “Still Missing” much more satisfying.

“Scared Scriptless”, Alison Sweeney

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This author is also the host of The Biggest Loser, a show I used to watch faithfully but have given up because I got annoyed when the trainers acted like therapists and also judged the contestants for trying to win the money rather than just focus on weight loss. (Why can’t they do both?)

But anyway, this is the story of a woman who works on a soap opera and her experiences with that as well as trying to get a reality show started that features her home town. I thought the behind the scenes details of what goes on at a tv show would interest me, but it turns out too much information is kind of boring. And it’s funny because I know when I write I tend to gravitate toward providing facts rather than strictly focusing on interactions and feelings. This book was entertaining, but not one I look back on especially fondly.

“The Summer I Wasn’t Me”, Jessica Verdi

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I do look back on this book fondly. This is the story of a teenage girl who enters a gay conversion camp in order to please her very religious mother. This reminded me a lot of the movie “But I’m a Cheerleader”, although not as funny as I remember that being. But this book was funny–moments like when the boys are forced to play baseball and the girls are forced to do laundry. Nope, not gay anymore!

Lexi befriends other campers, some there willingly, some there because their family forced them to go. The idea of a gay conversion camp is ridiculous to me on many levels, but the funniest thing to me is the situation is a great environment for a bunch of sexually curious teenagers to hook up. But besides that, the tactics the camp uses are sexist and creepy and sad. Obviously I don’t need convincing, but the book illustrates that being gay is not something a person can simply choose not to do.

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Now I’ve got my sights on 30 books for 2014!

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