2019 · Long post · Wrap ups

March Wrap-Up and Mini-Reviews 2020

It’s been a good month reading wise, but not TBR wise…

I had 8 books on my TBR for March but ended up reading more than that. I read about half of my TBR and the rest was not on my TBR at all. Typical.

Several of my none-TBR books came from the library and were spontaneous or mood-reads. It felt good to have mood reads as I don’t often do it. so I will not beat myself up over not following my TBR, which in itself is just a guideline that I love putting together 😁

I enjoyed this month though, even though it brought massive change to the world.

I had the strangest Saturday last weekend, where I stayed in and read – it felt so normal I almost forgot the issues of the world lol

Anyway let’s dive into the books I’ve read and have a deeper look a look at them.

Randomize by Andy Weir

E-book – Kindle Prime

The Story:

A short story following the idea of a true randomizer. The characters we follow in this book starts off with being the director of a Casino and his IT employer who might have saved their company a fortune by taking the system offline. Then they get a new system installed which promises a true randomizer computer (a good thing to have in a casino). We then start to follow the installer and his wife in their attempt to use the machine to their own benefit.

My Opinion:

It was physics heavy and heavy in the theory of everything, but enjoyable. My mind was a bit mashed up by the end. I like the direction the story took and who it ended πŸ™‚

Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka

Audiobook – Library

The Story:

The story follows a salesman who finds himself turned into a beetle one morning. This is an issue as he is a sole provided for his family (parents and sister) and works for a company who his father owes money too. But a beetle can’t be a sales man. and as he goes through exploring his abilities and limitations his family has other challenges. Not only has their son/brother changed into a beetle, but what does a beetle eat? And somehow they will need to make a living now.

My Opinion:

This is a re-read for me. Listening to Benedict Cumberbatch was very nice and he did a good job narrating the book.

But for some reason I found the book a lot more humorist the first time around. I’m not sure why, it was just funnier the first time around… hmm

Also I remember a different ending than this one. Maybe I had a different translation? Or maybe I made it up.

There Will Come A Darkness by Katy Rose Pool

ARC – NetGalley

The Story:

In a world where religion is based around prophets and the last prophet is unknown, ciaos is slowly creeping in on them. The 5 main characters all have different jobs in finding this last prophet however, they don’t know it. One kills bad people with her touch to protect her sister. One runs away from an abusive past and gambles to make a living. One is destined to protect the prophet but don’t know who they are and his heart strays. One is not supposed to be here. One is exiled from his kingdom but is trying to find a way back. One of these are the prophet.

My Opinion:

I really enjoyed this book so much more that I expected! I found the prophecy ended up as a “who-done-it?” type mystery. I constantly tried to figure out who was who and who was responsible for which part in the prophecy.

I did a full review here πŸ™‚

My Sister, The Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

E-book – Libby the Library App

The Story:

Korede is a nurse in a hospital in Nigeria and has somehow ended up cleaning up after the third time her younger sister killed her boyfriend in self defence, or was it? Korede begins a journey of questioning her sisters motive especially after she starts dating Korede’s boss, someone she herself likes a lot. Does Ayool’s boyfriend really have a angry streak, and is it really self defence? Why doesn’t she always have to clean up after her?

My Opinion:

This was such a quick read and very entertaining. It’s was funny in parts but I wouldn’t say it was laugh out loud like I’ve heard others say. It was very enjoyable read and a book I would recommend to anyone really πŸ™‚ Its not so much of a crime novel as a contemporary novel. The way the main character deals with the situation that her sister might be a serial killer, is the same way someone would deal with their sister cheating on all her exams and getting straight A’s – do you say anything or do you not? It might not be right what she did but the consequences of saying anything might be to pricey. Very entertaining 😁

Recursion by Blake Crouch

Audiobook – Library

The Story:

Try to imagine how time only depends on you memory. Then try to imagine how time travel can only be done through your memory. But as you go back to change your life, everyone else with remember the alternative world that you just erased and get mad, but they will only remember it all on the day you went back. That is what this book is about.

My Opinion:

This book turned my mind! it was like Inception but with a book. the constant going back and “fixing” things made it all a bit mashed up together. But I liked how the author had tried to separate them with greyed out memories instead of having them the same and stuff. It was possible to follow along even though the timeline was the same but on repeat and with smaller changes or edits.

I want to check out Dark Matter now, the authors debut book.

Don’t Tell My Mum I Work on The Rigs, She Thinks I’m A Piano Player In A Whore House by Paul Carter

E-book – Owned

The Story:

A non-fiction narration of how it is to live and work on the oil rigs on land, not at sea. Land drilling is usually very remote and does not follow you normal rules and laws. Paul Carter takes you through everything from his upbringing and how he ended up in Australia to his first job and every other continent afterwards. It included a job in Nigeria, a pet monkey he accidentally blew up, getting sea sick flying a helicopter in a hurricane and trying to have a love life back home. He ends the book with how he got out and why he wanted to get out.

My Opinion:

I very much enjoyed this book. It’s funny and scary at the same time. I almost ended up in the oil industry myself and I can’t imagine myself working on these rigs. I actually interviewed for a job in DCR Congo for a mining company but my french wasn’t good enough. I’m so glad I didn’t end up working there. Though I know people how work or used to work on the rigs and I can picture them getting in these situations without fail.

The Secret Commonwealth (Book of Dust #2) by Philip Pullman

Audiobook – Library

The Story:

This story follows Lyra Silvertoung and Michael Polsted after His Dark Materials trilogy. The first Book of Dust takes place before His Dark Materials series. Lyra and Pantalimon are struggling with their connection and friendship. Michael and Oakly Street are slowly rolling along. But then Pantalimon sees a man get murdered and it rolls on from there. Its about roses and separating for your deamon. Its about Lyra and Michael finding their way back to a friendship

My Opinion:

I have a fundamental issue with this series being refereed to a separate trilogy when it’s not. You can’t read this series without reading His Dark Materials. Nothing makes sense if you do. I have read it and I still get a bit confused.

The story is fine and entertaining, but I find it a but pointless if that makes sense. There is no direct goal and no achievements here. The book contains so much both good and bad and informative, and I understand the size of it and how it need to fit everything in, but I’m struggling to see the point of it. Maybe I didn’t pay enough attention when I listened to it.

Having said all that, I did enjoy it and I listen to is on audiobook which was narrated by Michael Sheen (the actor) who was very good! I loved his version of the Welsh miners! πŸ˜‚ That was probably my favourite part.

I will read the last book when it comes out.

The City We Became by N. K. Jemisin

ARC – NetGalley

The Story:

Set in this world, cities sometimes gets born and become and independed entity in the large multi-dimansional sense of things. You would never notice unless you had become the avatar for the city.

In this book New York tires to get born. However, it turns out there are 6 avatars not just one. There is an avatar for each borough; Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, and Staten Island, and then New York itself. They will need to find each other get together and save this city from an interdimensional villain who is taking advantage of the birth going a bit array.

My Opinion:

I love this book! It was so creative and original (to me at least). I’ve never read anything like this. How cities become entities and impersonated. The amount of research required for this is beyond me!

I’m a new fan of N. K. Jemisin! I will definitely read all her other books now.

Review to come on Friday! It’s all written and ready to go πŸ₯°

Evidence of the Affair by Taylor Jenkins Reid

E-book – Prime Reads

The Story:

The story follows two married couples where the wife of the doctor find a love letter from the teachers wife. So She sits herself down a writes to the teacher and asks if he has any letters from her husband the doctor addressed to his wife. The ball roll from there.

My Opinion:

I liked this short read. I was only going to have a quick look ate the writing – an hour later I was done…!

Its written in letter style which makes it even quicker, and the main correspondent is between the wife of the doctor and the teacher. They find solace in eachother, support each other and tries of figure out what to do.

I like how at the end there was no harsh blame or blamings or anything negative, the ending was positive and not stereotypical which I really liked.

The Rabbi’s Daughter by Reva Mann

Physical book – Owned

The Story:

Reva Mann grew up in London during the 70s in a Rabbi household. She had sex with strangers, took drugs for fun, and anything she could to get away from the strict and emotionally detached parents. Then she started a relationship with a non-Jew and her parents kicked her out. Realisation dawned on her that she needs to do something with her life. She moves to Jerusalem to study mid-wifely but end-up seeing the light, marry an ultra Orthodox man and have three children before getting a divorce. It’s a story about finding where you belong.

My Opinion:

I enjoyed this insightful book for Jewish life both religious and secular. The life of ultra-Orthodox is fascinating and she goes through explaining so much and especially when it didn’t fit her life even though she struggled to make it fit. The loneliness must have been hard to deal with. I can only imagine. The sex rules of the ultra Orthodox was very fascinating.

Orthodox Jews are so secluded from the rest of the world if difficult to understand what they are doing and why. This book gave me an insight into that and help me understand. This is the reason I read non-fiction books – to get insight and a different point of view. I’m not religious but I like to understand why people may be religious, especially the extreme/orthodox kind.

Reva never blames or attacks her religion, she focuses of mental health and people being different and having different needs. When she writes about her orthodox phase she never adds a “Boy was I wrong!” kind of comment. She stay respectful of the religious throughout the book, and I really appreciate that.

Highly recommended if you want to understand and see a different point of view.

Reading Challenge check:

Let’s hold me accountable.

I have two goals this year which involve acquiring books;

  1. only buy two books a month,
  2. only request two ARCs a month.

Rules: For buying books it only for books I, personally, spend money on including subscription boxes (one per box), but it excludes my audible membership and all free books and gifts. For the ARC’s I’ve focused on my request-button-pressing and not getting the requests approved because you don’t know if it will be approved, nor do you know when it will be approved. Therefore, only two request-clicks per month. I can move the points between the months and if I don’t use them in one month transfer them to the next month.

I will have this on my wrap-ups every month.

Let’s check if I stuck to my goals:

  • Only buy two books a month: 
    • Gods of Jade and Shadow
    • A Monster Calls

Available credit from last month; 1

Credit transferring over to next month: 1

  • Only request two ARC’s: 
    • The Eve Illusion
    • Empire of Gold (wished for)

Available credits from last month; 0

Credit transferring over to next month: 0

I also had a goal of reading one book form my physical shelf and one books from my e-book shelf per month. None of these can involve 2020 acquired books. Based on all the books I read this month these are the once from my shelves:

  • Physical shelf
    • The Rabbi’s Daughter
  • E-Book shelf
    • Evidence of the Affair

That’s it!

Have you read any of these?

Of all of them I think either The City We Became of My Sister The Serial Killer were my favourite. What was your favourite read this month?

Until next time; happy reading!

14 thoughts on “March Wrap-Up and Mini-Reviews 2020

  1. Looks like you had a very good reading month! I hope April is just as good!
    I’m hoping to read recursion soon, so glad to hear you enjoyed it πŸ™‚


    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t even bother with TBRs because I never follow them haha, so congrats on breaking yours and mood reading πŸ˜€ I read Metamorphosis in High School and hated it, though I wonder if I would have liked it more if I had listened to Benedict Cumberbatch reading it if I would have liked it more 🀣

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Haha! You might have. School reads are always horrible to me because we tear the book apart detail by detail and I hated that, but I love reading. Or maybe you’ll start reading it and all these memories rise to the surface of your school days…


  3. So glad you had a great reading month. I’m usually like that with my TBRs as well, but I’ve been trying to stick to them lately. Of course that means I have been reading less when I get stuck or am not in the mood for something I have ‘scheduled’. I might have to just scrap my planned reading and read whatever LOL. Hope you have a fantastic April!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That sounds like the best solution for you. I try to have one heavy read on the side with more easier reads on the go. So I’m starting The Man in the High Castle today along with Gideon the Ninth. The Man with be a slow and heavy read but I can reward myself with reading the other book πŸ˜€ A win-win situation πŸ™‚ Thanks! I hope your April is amazing too! Stay safe πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s a great way to go about it. I usually try to squeeze lighter things in between heavier reads but my reading schedule was so tight in March that it left me overwhelmed with heavier reads lol. April will be different! Thanks so much! ❀

        Liked by 1 person

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