I read a lot of books in August, but four really stand out at the top of the list.

Firsts is a really important book focusing on teenage sexuality and consequences.

Isla and the Happily Ever After is probably the most realistic of Stephanie Perkins’ books, dealing with the ups and downs after a couple gets together.

Pretending to Dance is about family secrets and how our past can change us, even when we try not to let it.

What I Thought Was True delves into a relationship full of misunderstandings and assumptions.

I’ve only published a review for two of these books, but the other two will be coming out shortly!

What are the best books you read last month?

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Pretending to Dance was my second book by Diane Chamberlain, and I was not disappointed.  It’s told in the alternating voices of Molly as a teenager and Molly as an adult, and the plot twists and mysteries seem neverending.

In the present, Molly and her husband are working to adopt a child, knowing that Molly cannot conceive.  They undergo interviews, background checks, and home visits, all of which put them one step closer to their future child, and all of which send Molly’s thoughts back to her adolescence.

In the past, Molly as a fourteen-year-old girl adores her father, a therapist with a particularly quick-progressing form of multiple sclerosis.  Her mother, on the other hand, is cold and distant.  As Molly spends the summer helping her father, she also experiences her first love and learns about family secrets that she might not have expected.

Pretending to Dance is an easy, fast-paced book.  The characters feel alive, the story never drags, and the writing is wonderful.  For fear of spoilers, and since the book’s release date is so far off, I don’t want to go into too much detail in this review.

Let me just say that this book is not to be missed, and I would highly recommend pre-ordering it.

Thanks to Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press for the ARC!

Final rating: ★★★★☆