Friday Reads 3/5/21

In full disclosure, I started the year fully intending to physically read one book and listen to one audiobook at a time. So the math on that is two books. Two books, max, at a time. I’m so funny. Here is a look at what I’m currently reading…

I am currently just past the halfway point in the audiobook for ‘Butter Honey Pig Bread.’ I am listening to this audiobook courtesy of Netgalley. This book, written by Francesca Ekwuyasi, follows three characters: twin sisters Kehinde and Taiye, and their mother Kambirinachi. The timeline jumps around between the present day reunion of the three, the time the twins spent estranged as young adults, and then back to their mother’s story (from birth to adulthood). The story is so full of love, guilt, pain, trauma, and personal discovery. And then there are elements of magic/mysticism/folklore that take me by surprise- Kambirinachi believes that she is an Ogbanje, a non-human spirit in the Nigerian tradition that plagues a family with misfortune. This element is introduced at the very beginning of the novel, but as the story unfolds you sort of get carried away in the reality of the characters so that you forget about it, until it is dropped back in matter of factly, and then: ohhhhh yeah! Angry spirits. It is just so well done. It should also be noted the story takes place over three continents, with the characters exploring their identities in Europe and North America, and bringing that self knowledge home with them to Africa.


I am also listening to a middle grade novel with my kids. ‘The Brave,’ by James Bird was selected as the group read for the 2021 round of Middle Grade March (hosted on YouTube by Books and Jams, Life Between Words, and The Curly Reader). I’m surprised my kids wanted to continue with me. It is middle grade, but probably on the older side than what they’ve read before. My husband was in the car with us when we started it, and he agrees that there’s nothing inappropriate or that they shouldn’t hear, but plenty that they haven’t been exposed to yet. The main character Collin is 12 years old and has a compulsion to count the letters of every word spoken to him and announce that number out loud, to the annoyance of…. well, everyone. It is such a big issue that he is asked to leave school and sent to live with his mother, who he has never even met, on an Ojibwe reservation. Enjoying it so far.


I started reading ‘A Little Life,’ by Hanya Yanagihara this week. I am two chapters in. 77 pages. A whopping 9%. I haven’t cried yet.. but I know it’s coming. Being so late to this novel has me prepared for the heartbreak. I am really liking the way each character has been introduced and the way they interact with and value each other. I am a sucker for friend groups in books and tv. I put this book aside for the past two days to try and make reading progress elsewhere, but I’m eager to get back into it.


Another read I have going for Middle Grade March is ‘Liesl and Po,’ by Lauren Oliver. It has fairy tale / ghost story elements, but honestly I don’t think I’ll read past the 50 pages I’ve gotten so far.


Lastly, I am reading ‘Five Carat Soul,’ by James McBride. I love it. He has quickly become a favorite author of mine. There is so much humor incorporated in his story telling


What are you currently reading? Do you read more than one book at a time? Let me know!

Happy Reading!

Spookathon Readathon Day 1

Hellooooo! I’m still here!

Been busy, been away, been reading…but have not been blogging.

I have been having a great time participating in the Spookathon Photo Challenge over on instagram, though. Let me just say… I WISH I had them sick bookstagram skills. But, alas, I do not.

The readathon portion of Spookathon, which is hosted by Books and Lala, started today (Oct 15) and I had every intention of participating, but so far today the only reading I’ve gotten done is listening to Hero of Ages (Mistborn #3) while getting to some housework. I’ll probably grab one of the books from my readathon tbr to crack before calling it a night, because I’d hate to fail completely straight out of the gate!

I based my TBR for the readathon on the challenges:

  1. Read a thriller
  2. Read a book with purple on the cover
  3. Read a book not set in this time period
  4. Read a book with a spook word in the title
  5. Read a book with pictures

Is any one else participating in Spookathon? Or doing any other October theme readathon?

Friday 56: ‘The Wicked Deep’

Friday 56 is a linkup hosted by Freda’s Voice


RULES:

*Grab a book, any book.

*Turn to Page 56 or 56% on your e-reader.
If you have to improvise, that is okay.

*Find a snippet, short and sweet.

*Post it, and add the url to your post in the Linky below.

Also join in the fun on Instagram using the hashtags #Instagram56 #Friday56


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I just finished reading The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw.  I loved it.

Page 56 happens to blank, so this excerpt is from page 57:

“From the black waters of the harbor, their song sinks into dreams, permeates the brittle grass that grows along steep cliffs and rotting homes.  It settles into the stones that hold up the lighthouse; it floats and swirls in the air until it’s all you can taste and breathe.

“This is how they do it– how the sisters are freed from their brackish grave.  They steal three bodies and make them their own.  And this season, they do it swiftly.”

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This book was well written without being to flowery.  It was dark and macabre without being scary or morbid.  It left me with a lot to think about in terms of love, loss and identity.

Let me know if you participate in The Friday 56.

Hope you have a great weekend ahead of you!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? vol. 2

Oh hi! I forgot today was Monday.  I’m so thrown off by my husband being home… yay three day weekends!!!

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment, and er… add to that ever growing TBR pile!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by The Book Date.

Last week I was able to meet my goal of finishing The Final Empire.  To get the second half of the book finished I ended up switching back and forth through e-book and graphic audio, and it made for a really immersive reading experience.  Once I started listening to it I was able to connect with the characters a little better- I heard the actors’ voices as I read on my own, and I picked up more on the humor and character interactions from listening to parts of it.

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I didn’t listen to or read anything else until I finished The Final Empire, but once I had that done I moved onto Fables vol. 18: Cubs in Toyland.  I really enjoyed reading this volume.  It did a better job at sticking to one story line than the previous volume did.  This was a very emotional and eerie installment.   I can’t recommend this graphic novel series highly enough. It got little ‘meh’ for a few volumes, but I really love the series overall.

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This morning I started The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw.  I have very high expectations for it as the kickoff of my fall/dark/witchy/spooky/Halloweeny TBR.  Afterwards, I plan on reading Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman.

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I also decided that I should go ahead and start the next Mistborn book, The Well of Ascension, and just take my time with it while reading some other things.  I know if I put it aside completely I am likely not to come back to it.

I also picked up Infidelity, a Memoir by Ann Pearlman from the library.  This sounded interesting, but I have a feeling it will be something I thumb through, not read cover to cover.  We’ll see what happens.


 

What have you been reading?  What will you be reading?

Make sure to visit the host page to check out more IMWAYR posts and to link up yours.

Have a great week!

T5W: Redemption Arcs

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Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes.  The topic schedule can be found in the Goodreads group.


This weeks topic is Redemption Arcs.

I feel like redemption arcs are more than just a case of learning some background that justifies a characters antagonistic actions.  I think that is a matter of insight rather than redemption.  When I consider redemption, I want it to be a character doing something big to make up for the horribleness that has defined them up to that point.  But that’s just me and what I’m thinking about this week as I make this list.  Whether or not that is the true definition of a redemption arc… I really have no idea.

#5- Holland (from: Shades of Magic trilogy)

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I’m kind of breaking my rule right off the bat.  We learn about Holland and his torture at the hands of the Dane Twins who force him to carry out their sinister wishes… but he lets himself be defeated and sent into Black London for the greater good.  Or so we think……….. I won’t spoil any further.

#4- Prince Robot IV (from: Saga)

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This dude is the worst.  Until he has something personal to fight for, and all of a sudden he is side by side with our favorite moony in the universe.  PLOT. TWIST.

#3- Prince Charming (from: Fables)

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He is introduced as a silver tongued womanizer who cares only about wealth and power- but a few volumes in you realize he is a strategical genius and the one to lead Fabletown to victory against the Adversary.  I remember the moment I paused my reading and realized: “Holy crap, I don’t hate him anymore.”

#2- Loki (from: Marvel Cinematic Universe)

We went from this slimy asshole in Avengers…

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…to this: Thor’s Brother-From-Another-Mother (and Father for that matter) fighting to save his adoptive home.Screen Shot 2018-08-22 at 7.17.39 PM.png

Loki, I think I love you. No… I KNOW I do.

#1- Darth Vader (from: A Galaxy Far Far Away)

No explanation necessary.

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Shelf Control

I found this meme and thought… “Hey! I have TBR shelves I need to control!”

So here we are.

Welcome to Shelf Control — an original feature created and hosted by Bookshelf Fantasies.

Shelf Control is a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up! For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out my introductory post, here.

I am beyond excited for fall… autumn (whatever, I’ve always called it fall).  It’s my favorite season for several reasons:

  1. Climate- I live in New England, so it’s kind of required I love fall
  2. Hot apple cider
  3. Pumpkins
  4. Spooky (NOT gory!) Halloween decorations
  5. Atmospheric reads

I have quite a few books I saved to read leading up to Halloween, and honestly they may end up taking up my entire fall season, which I am going to say is September through November.

My birthday was in June, and with the gift cards I received I ordered several 2018 releases that I anticipate will make good lead up to Halloween reads.

The first one I will talk about is:

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

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I am going to venture a guess that by now everyone has at least heard of this book, if not read it.  It was released in March, with much hype, and I made a promise to myself that I would save it for fall. I mean… it’s about witches!

An excerpt from the Goodreads description:

Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow…

Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.

The cover is gorgeous, the plot sounds perfect for this time of year, and I’ve seen enough good reviews for it, that I am more than eager to try it out for myself.  So far, I have gotten lucky and ended up loving books that have gotten mixed reviews.   The Goodreads rating is 3.86 and my prediction is that it will be 4 if not 5 stars from me.  We’ll see if I was right (I really hope so! I could use a 5 star book to kick off the season!)


If you want to participate in this meme, check out the post at Bookshelf Fantasies and join in the comments.  Don’t forget me know if you do!

Let’s take control of our shelves, one book at a time!  What book have you bought that you need to get to?

Top 5 Wednesday: Books I Love with Covers I HATE

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Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam from the YouTube channel, Thoughts on Tomes. Check out the Goodreads group for topic schedule and participants.


This week is a freebie topic week, which is perfect because I have been so bad about posting lately and this is a great way to jump back in. Again.

The topic I have decided on is Books I LOVE with Covers I HATE!

Usually it’s the opposite: you are attracted to a cover and then disappointed when the story doesn’t live up to the expectations you based solely on its beauty. Right? We’ve all been there at least once…ahem… To Kill a Kingdom (I mean, the book was okay, but that cover! am I right!?)

But every once in a while you hear good things about a book that you had passed over because the cover is atrocious, or tropy, or just generally unappealing.

Now, I realize you should never judge a book by its cover…. but c’mon we all do. If we are not looking for something specific, it’s typically the cover that draws us in.

So here they are: 5 books that I have read and loved, but never would have thought to pick up on my own because I totally judged them by their covers (plus 2 that I haven’t read yet, but have heard they’re great even though they are hideous).

In no particular order:

1-The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

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It’s just so ugly. It looks like it’s for 12 year olds, but like, bratty texty 12 year olds…. not demigod summer camp, or school of wizardry 12 year olds.

It’s actually a great book about an 18 (I think) year old with body issues, anxiety, a non-traditional family, and experiencing first love.

2- The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee

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So right off the bat, I don’t love books that have people on them, because I inevitably picture the character differently, if only slightly. In this case, that didn’t turn out to be such a big problem because I listened to the audiobook (AMAZING btw) and so didn’t have to see the cover often. Plus, yeah, this is totally Monty. My main problem with this is that the lettering and doodle style graphics over the portrait make it seem like a Seventeen Magazine cover… or some other equally sugary publication.
Honestly, it’s grown on me the slightest bit since reading it, but had I not heard over and over how good the book was, I never would have picked it up on my own.

3- All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover

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Books with “white people almost kissing” on the cover… yeah I don’t read those books. But my sister has followed a few of my book recommendations, so when she encouraged me to read this (actually shared her audible with me, so I had no excuses not to) I figured it was time I actually go with one of her recommendations.

I haven’t heard rave reviews about Colleen Hoover in general, so I did not anticipate loving this book. I don’t think I will go out of my way to read any more of her books, but this one REALLY got me in all the feels. I cried for the entire second half of this book.

I feel like there are so many other images they could have used for this that could tie into the plot- a beach house, a take out container, a mysterious box, a couple with distance in between them…. literally anything would be better!

4- Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

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This entire trilogy is plagued by trash covers! Holy hell do I hate every single one of them! They are hideous… sorry if you actually like them… but they are so cheesy and don’t capture the story AT ALL!!!!!
Now if I can get this trilogy in the UK paperback editions I would be all set. Those are MUCH MUCH MUCH better! Until then, I will settle for the audiobooks (currently listening to #3 actually) from my library because I don’t want to look at these particular covers on my shelves.

5- Wintersong by S Jae-Jones

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This is actually the least visually offensive of the bunch, but I certainly would have kept walking right past… in fact, I did, several times. Nothing about this cover says “Hey! Over here… I’m interesting!” It wasn’t until I finally heard that it was a LABYRINTH RETELLING that I had to have it in my life.


And finally- here are two books I am very excited to read, even though I HATE THEIR FACES! I really hope they live up to the good reviews.

Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson

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There is nothing good about this cover, except maybe that I can imagine what running my thumb over the title pin would feel like.

My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, and Brodi Ashton

My Plain Jane (The Lady Janies, #2)

I have the same problems with this as I have with The Gentleman’s Guide– it looks like a teen magazine cover. It’s not terrible, I don’t even know exactly what I would want to be done different…. it certainly is unique and makes the Lady Janies series cohesive and identifiable. I just don’t happen to love it.


What covers have you come across that do their stories no justice?

T5W: Top Five Wednesday- Summer Reads

Top 5 Wednesday is hosted by Sam of Thoughts on Tomes, check out the Goodreads group for the topic schedule.


This week’s topic is summer reads. I have decided to give to you the reads that remind me of summer…. not necessarily that the story is summery, but it may just be that I remember reading and loving them in the summertime.

1. The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien

I am currently re-reading the Hobbit and plan on moving on to re-read the rest of the books. This gives me all the summer feels because I remember reading these over the summer before my senior of high school- laying in the sun by the pool and listening to Simon and Garfunkel while I read. Aside from the memory of reading these in the summer, the adventure across Middle-Earth, any long journey really (unless it specifically says that the trek was during winter), reminds me of summer travels.

I want to get some more beautiful copies of these, without the movie covers…. but look at those gorgeous spine creases. Even the condition of these books reminds me of how much I enjoyed them that summer. I will never get rid of these books.

2. The Chronicles of Narnia by C S Lewis

I suppose it’s kind of fitting, considering their friendship, that Tolkien and Lewis’ major works should give me similar feelings. I also read these over the summer. This time, it was the summer after my freshman year of college. I was visiting my booooyfriend (now husband of 9 years!) in New Hampshire. It was our first summer together. He was working two jobs and taking summer classes to transfer back to our school in Connecticut. I had taken the train up from New Jersey for what was supposed to be a week, but ended up being most of the summer. Because he was so busy, and I was spending just about the whole time with his family (parents, siblings, aunt, uncle, cousins grandparents) which I JUST MET, he bought me a bind up of the entire seven book series to devour in the sun at his family’s little lake house. That place holds so many amazing summer memories for me…. unfortunately we don’t go there any more…. ugh… anyway… Narnia = summer for me.

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3. The Story of My Unbelievable Summer by Davide Cali and Fortunately, The Milk by Neil Gaiman

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Yeah, my first two choices were series, and now I’m including two books… I fail at the whole 5 part of T5W. Oh well. Both of these books I have discovered with my kids and have somehow become summer (or at least first taste of warm weather) re reads for us. I should really buy copies of these by now. We take them out from the library over and over again.

4. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz.

There she goes with THIS book again…

I can just hear you thinking that! But yes… THIS BOOK! This book that sings to my soul. I actually read this for the first time in the winter, but it is a summer book if ever there was one, with most of the story taking place over two summers. I CANNOT WAIT for the sequel, There Will Be Other Summers.

5. The Penderwicks at Point Mouette by Jeanne Birdsall

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I think this is my favorite of the Penderwicks series. These are middle grade books that I have listened to multiple times with my kids. My husband isn’t the biggest fan, but has been forced to listen along in the car. He thinks the books are boring. They are character driven for sure. They are just beautiful books about family. My kids love them. I love them. The first (and newly released fifth book) of the series also take place during summer, but this third one (Point Mouette) makes me want to summer on the coast of Maine (the book’s setting) so badly! It gives me an echo of those New Hampshire summers by the lake feeling.

Currently Reading- Children of Blood and Bone

Hello Readers!

This week I am putting all my focus on Children of Blood and Bone by Toni Adeyemi. I started it last Wednesday at my son’s soccer practice and was able to read maybe 7 pages. I didn’t get far into it until Sunday (yesterday I got to read about 120 pages), so now that I am connected to it I expect it won’t take me too long. It’s a library book and new releases can’t be renewed so I want to make sure I can get it finished before it goes back.

Right now I have both kids playing baseball and one of them is also doing spring soccer, so practices and games really fill up our week. I anticipate my reading pace to slow down between that, and the fact that my husband and I are doing our best to find time to watch movies together as well as binge watch Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

So far I am really enjoying COBAB. I love how powerful Zélie is- that staff of hers and her round house kicks are BAD ASS. I love the fantasy elements added to animals that we are familiar with already- the giant size and horns on cats big enough to ride. So cool! I really love when a book can make me feel engulfed in a culture… even though it’s a fantasy world.

The only problem I am having with this book is that every time I read the word ashê, I get this song stuck in my head from the days when my babies were little babies and we brought them to Music Together classes… almost every Saturday for probably 4 years! And now they don’t even remember it! Oh man, don’t get me started on how sad I get when I ask them if they remember how we couldn’t go to bed until we danced around the house to a certain song…. and they have no idea what I’m talking about. Ugh, kids. They’ll break your heart!

Sorry, got off topic there!

I’m kind of nervous about getting to the end of this book. I don’t usually read a new series until it’s a few books deep. But I couldn’t resist the hype so here I am reading a newly released first of a series. What am I doing to myself?! I’m going to go crazy waiting on the next book!

I wish I could find a pronunciation guide for all the Yoruba words and names. If anyone can point me in the direction of one I’d really appreciate it.

This book really makes me want to watch Black Panther so bad! I haven’t seen it yet!!!! My husband and I are playing catch up on all the MCU movies and I am having the best time nerding out over them. We just watched the second Guardians of the Galaxy movie, so we have a ways to go until we get to Black Panther… and Infinity War! ahhh I want them now! And the magic and power and black rep that I am getting from COBAB is just getting me even more amped up for Black Panther. I am so happy to be getting so much diversity in the fantasy genre!

What will you be reading (or watching) this week? Whatever it is, I hope you enjoy!

April Wrap-Up

I did not do well with the reading challenges I based my April TBR on. Oops.

I guess I did more mood reading than planned reading, which isn’t a bad thing… it just means my O.W.L.S. didn’t go like I thought they would. I still passed 5 subjects, just not the ones I intended to “sit for.” Here is a link back to what I thought I would read this month.


And here is what I ended up reading-

I started the month by finishing up Illuminae (hardcover borrowed from the library) and A Court of Thorns and Roses (audiobook).

I LOVED Illuminae. I had sooo many thoughts and feels. All the feels. I wrote this post when I finished it. Five Stars, no question.

Now…. ACOTAR…. how do I feel about ACOTAR? I enjoyed it. A lot. I really loved all the Beauty and the Beast elements of it. It also kind of reminded me of the relationship of Bill and Sookie (in the books at least, I never watched True Blood) especially when Feyre learns that their meet-cute was less cute and more contrived. And then there’s Feyre’s mistrust to friend to supernatural bond with Rhysand, which reminded me of Sookie and Eric. I have waited so long to read this series and made the mistake of looking for fan art so I am spoiled for a certain plot point… which everyone in the fandom is more than happy with, and is only a minor point of the series… but I was happy with ACOTAR as a stand alone, and so I’m in no rush to continue the series. I KNOWWWWW…. I can hear the ACOMAF groupies sharpening their pitchforks and coming for me. I know.

I also know that I didn’t plan on finishing the Dorothy Must Die Series, or continuing the Red Queen series… but here I am done with one and seriously considering the other. So never say never.

I couldn’t finish Illuminae without devouring Gemina and Obsidio next, so that’s exactly what I did. FIVE STARS to both! All the stars!!! This entire series is so intense and so much fun. My poor husband had to deal with me exclaiming out loud, laughing, gasping, hyperventilating, and otherwise trying to engage him and explain things to him…. he tries, poor thing, he tries to feign an interest and follow along.

The Illuminae Files, as amazing as they are, are not bedtime reads for me. No way. Too intense. I’ve been doing my best to stay ahead of any anxiety triggers that will keep me up all night, so instead of reading those books to fall asleep, I read Wires and Nerves vol. 1, the graphic novel continuation of the Lunar Chronicles. I gave it 3 stars. Actually, 3 1/2 but there’s no half stars on Goodreads and it definitely doesn’t get rounded up to 4 stars in my opinion. I’m torn as to whether I appreciated a quick and easy dose of the story I love, or if I would have preferred a fuller story in a standard novel format. I liked the story. I appreciated Iko’s perspective and identity crisis. But the art style itself was disappointing to me. I realize the series itself is YA, but this felt almost middle grade level…which I do still enjoy reading… but not when you’re continuing a story that’s been established for an older target audience, literally picking up where the novels left off. I think I would have preferred a richer art style, but was still able to enjoy this and will continue on to vol 2.

I read LOTS of Fables this month- volumes 4 through 8. Overall, I’m obsessed with this series. Fractured fairy tales are always right up my alley. A few of the volumes, though, fell really flat for me… my favorite characters went away.. but they’re back now and I’m so glad!

I started playing A Wolf Among Us. Now, I am not a gamer, I kind of wish I was… it would take my nerdness to all new levels… but I am terrible at video games. Still, when I learned there was a game that follows Bigby Wolf and is a prequel to the Fables graphic novels, I HAD to try it. It’s definitely the right game for me. Lots of animated sequences to watch and clues to collect. The whole murder-mystery, crime-solving story line really makes that bachelor’s degree in criminal justice investigative services (that I’m NOT using) worth it.

I listened to All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely. The dual perspective first person POV is really well done. I loved BOTH characters. And honestly I really related to Quinn- I’ve said things being dumb and naive, and just NOT appreciating the depth of racism as it STILL EXISTS TODAY. The story does a great job at demonstrating the dangers of learned subtle racism. This book made me angry. This book made me sad. As it should. I literally cried during the last chapter. This was a very good book and I hope that middle and high schools assign it. I gave it 5 stars, which may have been generous, but the way it approaches the subject gains it a star that the writing alone might not have. Also, the audiobook narrators did a really good job… for the most part…. there was a nurse that I wish would have been read differently, though.

In March I read The Upside of Unrequited and LOVED it, which means in April I just had to read Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. I both read and listened to this… which is something I love getting to do- read when I can, listen when I’m busy. I LOVED it. I love the friendship dynamics and the happy supportive family. Yeah there’s a bit of drama (I actually got really upset when Simon gets outed to his school), but it was just a really light, feel-good, cheesy but not gag worthy read. Becky Albertalli is officially an auto-read author. Her books are really good for coming down from something more intense.

On that note, I actually used Upside of Unrequited to help me calm down one night when I felt anxiety and insomnia taking over. The audio was available through my library app and it was exactly what I needed after sitting through a really upsetting church service that, honestly, scared the shit out of me. It was a family member’s church… never again! Yikes. So yeah, thank goodness for Molly and Reid. I loved the book just as much this time as the first time. Five star status maintained.

My book club’s choice for the month was White is for Witching by Helen Oyeyemi. I’ve really wanted to read Oyeyemi, but I didn’t know quite what to expect. This book was bizarre. At first I didn’t know what rating to give it. I was thinking somewhere between 2 or 3.5 stars, because on one hand…what the fuck was that? But on the other hand… woah. creepy. gothic. oh so visual. I felt like I was reading a nightmare. (Definitely a change from Simon!) It took me about 90 pages to think I might like it. Before that, it was so confusing. The narrative shifts POV without warning, and one of those POVs is the actual house! It’s hard to figure out when exactly things are happening, too. Once Miri goes to college (about halfway through the book) does it finally start to follow some sort of progression that makes sense. It was very surreal.

I don’t watch horror movies, but as I read it I could pause and picture how it would play out on screen, so that was kind of cool. After my book club’s meeting for this book, I realized I am quite enthusiastic about it, and I ended up giving it 4 stars because it gave so much to think about and I know will stick with me.

My last read of the month was a re-read of Ready Player One. This was a five star book for me the first time I read it. while I still enjoyed it, this wasn’t the same cant-put-down-must-finish-in-a-day experience. I’m going to say this was a 3.5/4 star read the second time around.

I started The Slave Players, which I won in a Goodreads giveaway; read the introduction to Neil Gaiman’s Norse Mythology; and FINALLY read the last two chapters of a Wrinkle in Time to my kids and started reading Redwall to them.

And that brings us to the end of April.


Okay, so O.W.L.S. results. I didn’t read what I thought I would, or even for the same subjects I thought I would.

  1. Arithmacy- Ready Player One
  2. Astronomy- Obsidio
  3. Charms- Fables vol 5- The Mean Season
  4. Herbology- A Court of Thorns and Roses
  5. Transfiguration- Fables vol 4- March of the Wooden Soldiers

That’s a pass… good enough.


I feel like I didn’t read much this month. How weird is that? When I get it all down it seems like a lot, but it just didn’t feel like much. I was kind of disappointed in myself for not getting to much of my TBR.

What was your month like?