2020 · Wrap ups

March Wrap-Up and Mini-Reviews 2021

A mixed month

This month was wild! I ended up doing two different readathon at the same time… yeah.

March had a slow start and a slow end but the readathons were great. I only discovered TomeTopple four days before it started and had to scramble a TBR together. Then I got hooked on live YouTube reading sprints and hangouts. That’s were I got tempted to do Bookoplathon which I already knew about but had decided not to participate in because of TomeTopple and because it was a 48h readathon. But here I am having done both.

The Bookoplathon was wild in itself. It was run by Becca and the books on YouTube and she manage to get other booktubers to do reading sprints with her so that the readathon was live for 48 house straight. Every 12 hour two new prompts would be given and you would pick another two books. I went for all of my short reads and reads I had already started just to be a part of it all 😁 it was so much fun!

Anyway, let’s just take a look at all the book I managed to get to in March.

Let’s just dive in 🙂

As a reminder: To me, 5 ivy leaves is an amazing book that stuck with me, surprised me, one I could stop thinking about, I got lost in, etc. 4 ivy leaves is an enjoyable read something I really liked, but that’s it. 3 ivy leaves are either a disappointing read, or the book is just OK.

How the King of Elfhame Came to Hate Stories (Folk of the Air #3.5) by Holly Black

e-Audiobook – Library

Once upon a time there was a boy with a wicked tongue…

Before Cardan was a cruel prince or a wicked king, he was a faerie child with a heart of stone. In this sumptuously illustrated tale, Holly Black reveals a deeper look into the dramatic life of Elfhame’s enigmatic high king. This tale includes delicious details of life before The Cruel Prince, an adventure beyond The Queen of Nothing, and familiar but pivotal moments from The Folk of the Air trilogy, told wholly from Cardan’s perspective.

This new instalment in the Folk of the Air series is a return to the heart-racing romance, danger, humour and drama that enchanted readers everywhere.

I loved being back here and follow Cardan in his short episodic life story. I loved to understand why he saw Jude at all. I love understanding him!

The House of The Spirits by Isabel Allende

Book – Owned

In one of the most important and beloved Latin American works of the twentieth century, Isabel Allende weaves a luminous tapestry of three generations of the Trueba family, revealing both triumphs and tragedies. Here is patriarch Esteban, whose wild desires and political machinations are tempered only by his love for his ethereal wife, Clara, a woman touched by an otherworldly hand. Their daughter, Blanca, whose forbidden love for a man Esteban has deemed unworthy infuriates her father, yet will produce his greatest joy: his granddaughter Alba, a beautiful, ambitious girl who will lead the family and their country into a revolutionary future.

The House of the Spirits is an enthralling saga that spans decades and lives, twining the personal and the political into an epic novel of love, magic, and fate.

I enjoyed it I think. I’m not sure. It was well written and well made. It drew me in which surprised me cause it doesn’t have much dialogue and the paragraphs are endless. But I have mixed feelings.

Book Club notes and opinions found here.

Skyward Inn by Aliya Whiteley

e-ARC – NetGalley

Skyward Inn, within the high walls of the Western Protectorate, is a place of safety, where people come together to tell stories of the time before the war with Qita. But safety from what?

Qita surrendered without complaint when Earth invaded; Innkeepers Jem and Isley, veterans from either side, have regrets but few scars. Their peace is disturbed when a visitor known to Isley comes to the Inn asking for help, bringing reminders of an unnerving past and triggering an uncertain future.

Did humanity really win the war?

This was not what I was expecting but it wasn’t bad. Now a few weeks later I have come to realise I didn’t like the formatting nor the execution but I liked the ending and the purpose of this book.

Full review here!

The Unbroken (Magic of the Lost #1) by C. L. Clark

e-ARC – NetGalley

Touraine is a soldier. Stolen as a child and raised to kill and die for the empire, her only loyalty is to her fellow conscripts. But now, her company has been sent back to her homeland to stop a rebellion, and the ties of blood may be stronger than she thought.

Luca needs a turncoat. Someone desperate enough to tiptoe the bayonet’s edge between treason and orders. Someone who can sway the rebels toward peace, while Luca focuses on what really matters: getting her uncle off her throne.

Through assassinations and massacres, in bedrooms and war rooms, Touraine and Luca will haggle over the price of a nation. But some things aren’t for sale.

TomeTopple read. And it was worth it.

Well this was an entertaining read. It’s dual perspective between Touraine and Luca. I loved Touraine with all her issues and struggles. But I seemed to like Luca’s plot line better. I’m definitely picking up the sequel when it comes out.

Full Review here.

We Hunt The Flame (Sands of Arawiya #1) by Hafsah Faizal

e-ARC – NetGalley

Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man when she braves the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her people. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating those foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the sultan. If Zafira was exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir displayed his compassion, his father would punish him in the most brutal of ways. Both Zafira and Nasir are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya–but neither wants to be.

War is brewing, and the Arz sweeps closer with each passing day, engulfing the land in shadow. When Zafira embarks on a quest to uncover a lost artifact that can restore magic to her suffering world and stop the Arz, Nasir is sent by the sultan on a similar mission: retrieve the artifact and kill the Hunter. But an ancient evil stirs as their journey unfolds–and the prize they seek may pose a threat greater than either can imagine. 

I really liked it and I really want to pick up the sequel soonish. I loved the characters and the magic in here. I loved the setting and the way the romance is done.

Full review here!

Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M Danforth

e-book – Library

DNF

ur story begins in 1902, at The Brookhants School for Girls. Flo and Clara, two impressionable students, are obsessed with each other and with a daring young writer named Mary MacLane, the author of a scandalous bestselling memoir. To show their devotion to Mary, the girls establish their own private club and call it The Plain Bad Heroine Society. They meet in secret in a nearby apple orchard, the setting of their wildest happiness and, ultimately, of their macabre deaths. This is where their bodies are later discovered with a copy of Mary’s book splayed beside them, the victims of a swarm of stinging, angry yellow jackets. Less than five years later, The Brookhants School for Girls closes its doors forever—but not before three more people mysteriously die on the property, each in a most troubling way.

Over a century later, the now abandoned and crumbling Brookhants is back in the news when wunderkind writer, Merritt Emmons, publishes a breakout book celebrating the queer, feminist history surrounding the “haunted and cursed” Gilded-Age institution. Her bestselling book inspires a controversial horror film adaptation starring celebrity actor and lesbian it girl Harper Harper playing the ill-fated heroine Flo, opposite B-list actress and former child star Audrey Wells as Clara. But as Brookhants opens its gates once again, and our three modern heroines arrive on set to begin filming, past and present become grimly entangled—or perhaps just grimly exploited—and soon it’s impossible to tell where the curse leaves off and Hollywood begins.

A story within a story within a story and featuring black-and-white period illustrations.

TomeTopple read.

First DNF of the year. Nothing wrong with the book itself but I was not in the mood for it. I think it will be better in audiobook format. Mainly because the author breaks the fourth wall a lot and talks directly to the reader. If I ever come accros the audiobook I will give this a second chance but until then not interested.

Bookoplathon – A Room of One’s Own by Virgini Wolf

E-Audiobook – Library

A Room of One’s Own, based on a lecture given at Girton College Cambridge, is one of the great feminist polemics. Woolf’s blazing writing on female creativity, the role of the writer, and the silent fate of Shakespeare’s imaginary sister remains a powerful reminder of a woman’s need for financial independence and intellectual freedom.

I’m surprised I liked this so much. I think mainly it’s because I got all the good feminist thoughts of today but thought and written in the 20s. I can’t believe we haven’t gotten further. But at the same time I loved the character’s intelligence and her way of thinking and analysing women in fiction.

Loved it! I need to find something else by Virginia Wolf to read now.

Bookoplathon – The Princess Game by Soman Chainani

E-book – Kindle Prime Reads

There are no happy endings for the Princesses of Chaminade High in this short, twisty tale of teenage murder games by the New York Times bestselling author of The School for Good and Evil series.

The victims are the most popular girls in school, each murdered and arranged in a grim fairy-tale tableau. To find the killer, rookie detective Callum Pederson has gone undercover where the Princes hold court. He’s found enough secrets among the bros to bring them in for questioning—but he could very well get lost in the games the Princes play. 

Well. This was interesting. Filled with toxic masculinity and I know the author is not like that so I don’t know if it was a way to tell me that all Disney princes are toxic or if he is trying to highlight what toxic masculinity is. Not sure. It was interesting and short but a bit intense for a 4am read 😂

Bookoplathon – Heartstopper volume 3 by Alice Oseman

Book – Own

In this volume we’ll see the Heartstopper gang go on a school trip to Paris! Not only are Nick and Charlie navigating a new city, but also telling more people about their relationship AND learning more about the challenges each other are facing in private…

Meanwhile Tao and Elle will face their feelings for each other, Tara and Darcy share more about their relationship origin story, and the teachers supervising the trip seem… rather close…? 

This was the best read of Bookoplathon 48h readathon. So cute! 🥰 I love Charlie and Nick! I have volume 4 on preorder and I can’t wait!

Loved it!

Bookoplathon – Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (#1) by Ransom Riggs

Audiobook – Library

A mysterious island.

An abandoned orphanage.

A strange collection of very curious photographs.

It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that makes for a thrilling listening experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow–impossible though it seems–they may still be alive.

This was a bit of a blur. I listen to this on audiobook at 3x the speed just to be able to finish this before midnight on the last day of the readathon. It was the final sprint. And I might have been sleep deprived and not managed to get all the plot but I’ve seen the movie so I know the story and how it ends. I only wanted to read this to see if I wanted to continue with the series. I’m not sure. I might.

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:
    • None

Available credit from last month; 1 March

Credit transferring over to next month: 3 march

  • Only request two ARC’s:
    • The ones we’re meant to find (04) ✅
    • In the Ravenous Dark (some time early March) ✅
    • Illusionary 17.03 ✅
    • For The Wolf 17.03 ✅
    • Oculta 17.03 ✅
    • The Jasmine Throne 23.03 ✅

Available credits from last month; -1

Credit transferring over to next month: -7

Oops 🙊

TBR Shelf Reads

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 or 2021 acquired books. Based on all the books I read this month these are the once from my shelves:

Physical shelf

– None

E-book shelf

– Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

That’s it!

Have you read any of these?

Until next time; happy reading!

3 thoughts on “March Wrap-Up and Mini-Reviews 2021

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s