March 2021 Wrap Up

In keeping with my usual annual trend, I have read fewer books in march than the first two months of the year and have now reached my usual monthly average of 5 books, although I am more than halfway through 3 others. For some reason, I always start the year reading a ton and then read progressively less until I reach around 5-6 books a month. anyway, let’s talk about the books. It was a pretty meh month for me, I think most of the books I read were okay, but not ones that I loved. 

Blood Upon the Sand by Bradley Beaulieu


This one was carried over from February and only really the last quarter or so of the book was read in March. As I mentioned in my February wrap-up, I just don’t love this series. Maybe i’d enjoy it better in physical format… I’m not sure. It’s just not gripping me the way I wish it did. On paper I should love this, but for some reason, it’s just not doing it for me. I might give it another book before deciding if I want to finish the series or not, I’m not sure. I gave it 3.25/5 stars.

Escaping from Houdini by Kerri Maniscalco

escaping houdini

Finally, like 3 years later, I continued with this series. I still really enjoy it. I like Kerri Maniscalco’s books in general. I think I probably prefer her other series just slightly more cause it’s fantasy. But this is by far the best YA mystery series I’ve ever read. Also, the romance is great too. 3.75/5 stars

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy

This was a re-read for me and I didn’t love it as much as I did the first time around. I don’t know why, i just found it less funny. I do want to continue with this series, that’s why I re-read this, but yeah it didn’t do it for me so much this time around. 3.5/5 stars

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

spinning silver

Another re-read and the only book I read this month that was over 4 stars. I am a sucker for Naomi Novik’s fairy-tales. I’m not sure I’m super interested in her other stuff. I tried Temeraire and it was okay, but I couldn’t get past the second book. And I haven’t tried her new book. But I will read any fairy-tale inspired book she puts out. 5/5 stars

A Deal With the elf King by Elise Kova


This is a Hades and Persephone/ Beauty and the Beast inspired story and if you know me, you know that is my favourite romance trope. I don’t know what that says about me, but I’m just a sucker for it. And this one was pretty good. I really enjoyed it for what it was. it didn’t have a very elaborate plot, but the world was cool, I enjoyed the characters, i liked the romance. Definitely would recommend if you’re shopping for some Hades/persephone action. 3.5/5 stars. 

Those are the books I completed in March, but I did start (and read about half) of three others. I was slightly slumpy this month so I just struggled a little finding what I wanted to read.

The Burning Page by Genevieve Cogman


I’ve read the first two books in this series this year and really enjoyed them. This one however is weaker than the first two I think. It’s still alright, but I was also like I said pretty slumpy and it wasn’t really doing it for me. I got maybe 2/3 into the book and I definitely plan on finishing it because I really like this series and i want to read the rest of it, but yeah, this is just a weaker book in my opinion and hopefully the next one picks up. 

To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

This is a Little mermaid inspired story. I’ve never been a huge fan of The Little mermaid, so I’m not loving this. But I do think it’s cool and I like this version better that original. This isn’t a direct retelling, it’s more dark. Much more slow-burn. So i like a lot of elements about it. I think it’s a solid book for what it is, but I’m not loving it and like i said before, I’ve been slumpy so I have less motivation to finish it. But I do want to finish it, I am halfway through it so I’m not DNFing it. 

Dragon Keeper by Robin Hobb


I feel like I sound like a broken record at this point, but again, this is not doing it for me right now. I think it’s a weaker book than pretty much all of the Elderlings books so far. I’m going to finish it because I need to in order to continue with the Elderlings books, but yeah this one is just meh. I’m halfway through it and I feel like literally nothing has happened. I feel like even the first Fitz book was more engaging than this one. 

February 2021 Wrap Up

Another month gone. I had a decent reading month despite it being short. Not as good as in January, but January is usually my best reading month of the year. I completed 8 books this month and am about 3/4 through a ninth though, so not bad.

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N. K. Jemisin


I really enjoyed this much more than I enjoyed The Killing Moon. I think the mythology is really cool and I am really intrigued by it. I’m really curious to continue with the series, but the sequels do follow different characters and I never really know how to feel about series like that. I will say it was a bit slow to start with. It took me a while to get into it, but one it got going, it was very compelling. there are also a lot of elements both character-wise and writing-style wise that appear in N.K. Jemisin’s Broken earth series (which is one of my favourite series ever, check out my review). So it was a lot of fun to see her play with those ideas and how they eventually evolved into perfection. So yeah, enjoyed the book, will continue with the series at some point. I gave it 3.75/5 stars

Seasons of War by Derek Landy


I am now officially up to date with this series. I believe there is another one being released at some point this year and I’m not sure what the plans are after that, but this has been a solid, fun series for me throughout and it’s been really cool to follow Valkyrie from childhood into young adulthood. 3.5/5 stars

The Mask Falling by Samantha Shannon


Been waiting for this one for a while. I really enjoy this series. It’s really fun and fast paced. I think my thoughts on this book without going into spoilers, are more or less what they were for the rest of the series, so you can check out my review of that. 3.75/5 stars

The Masked City by Genevive Cogman


I am thoroughly enjoying this series. this is the second book. It’s so much fun and so underrated in my opinion. At least… I haven’t really heard people talk about it. It’s great. it’s about a magic librarian lady and her dragon sidekick. Oh, and there’s also a Sherlock Holmes from an alternate dimension. What more could you ask for. 4/5 stars

City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett


This one was kind of a disappointment for me. It was pretty boring to be honest. Nothing happened for the first two thirds of it and then everything got resolved in like one grand “battle” if you could even call it that. As I put it in my Goodreads review “the highlight of the book was the MC getting high as hell and making her acid dreams reality basically.”. I really like his other series, but this one was a let down for me and I don’t think I| will continue with the series. 2/5 stars

The Folk of the Air books 2 and 3 by Holly Black

I finally finished this series and books 2 and 3 were just as addictive as the first one. Honestly, these gave me a hangover I still have not fully recovered from. they’re like book crack. I read them in 2 days, back to back it was wild. I want more. Cardan and Jude are the most addictive angsty couple I’ve ever read about. I’m just absolute trash for this series basically. 4.75/5 and 4.5/5 stars respectively.

The Humans by Matt Haig


This was… weird. I enjoyed it. It was funny and somewhat insightful, but also just very clichee. It was fine, but I didn’t love it and it took me a while to get into it. 3/5 stars

Blood Upon the sands by Bradley Beaulieu


I haven’t finished this one yet, but I am about 3/4 through it. I like this series, but I don’t love it. I wish I did because on paper, it’s totally my kind of book. But I feel kind of disconnected from it and I think I’ve managed to pinpoint why. I think there’s just too many characters and most of them are just not sufficiently fleshed out for me to distinguish between them. So aside from the 3 Pov characters, I tend to lose track of who is who and what their agendas are. It also doesn’t help that I’ve been listening to them on audio and the narrator for some reason decided to give everyone these weird Russian sounding accents. I don’t understand that choice. For one thing, why give accents to characters who are native to the country where the book is set? Secondly, this is a desert fantasy. Why do they all sound Russian? Thirdly, some of them are from different countries, why do they all have the same accent? So yeah, maybe I’ll switch to physical books for the future. And I guess I’ll have a rating for this next month. 

January 2021 Wrap Up

Generally speaking, January is always a strong reading month for me. I don’t know what it is about the new year that just makes me read twice as much as I normally do. As such, I read 13 books in January and I actually enjoyed all of them. So this will be a long post. Let’s get into it.

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden


This was a re-read for me. I have read the whole series and it’s one of my favourite series. And just such a solid start to the year. Cause I think everyone can agree we just need a better 2021. This also got me in the mood for some angsty  enemies to lovers fantasy romance. Which is totally reflected in the following books in this wrap up. I of course, gave this 5/5 stars. 

The Invisible Library by Genevive Cogman


This book was a lot of fun. I picked it up almost at random. One of the books in the series was on my recommended listens on Audible. So I listened to a preview and the narration was absolutely awful. But I read one of the reviews that highly recommended just reading the physical book. so I bought it on a whim and I ended up really enjoying it. It had dragons, it had fae, it had a magical library, it had this cool steampunk vibe. It gave me some The Infernal Devices vibes. It was just a lot of fun and there was also a maybe potential future slow burn, kinda angsty romance, which was just fuel on the fire kindled by The Bear and the Nightingale. Thoroughly enjoyed, I’ve already bought the next few books in the series, so looking forward to continuing with it soon. 4/5 stars.

The Fool’s Fate by Robin Hobb


Continuing on with the Elderlings. This is the final book in the third Elderlings series. I read 6 Elderling books last year. I’m really loving them on audio. I think I will take a little bit of a break for now, but I do want to continue with the next series later this year. They just get better and better as more and more of the world and the overarching story is revealed. The Fool is the best character ever. I loved seeing the interplay between the different series. It’s just such masterful writing even though the Fitz books aren’t my favourites. I’m not a huge fan of Fitz as a character. I find him a bit… just annoying. But still this series is much better than his first one and I still really loved it. 4/5 stars. 

An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson


I read A Sorcery of Thorns a couple of years ago and was pleasantly surprised by it. So I decided to pick this up when I was struck by my angsty fantasy romance craving and this hit the spot so well for me. It does have some pacing issues and it’s a bit insta lovey, but I still loved it. I loved the atmosphere, I loved the take on the fae and their inability to create anything. I’m also a sucker for the fae Courts and their magic being tied to their courts. so, yeah this was a lot of fun, I think I read it in two sittings. 3.5/5 stars

Kingdom of the Wicked by Kerri Maniscalco


I have already reviewed this one so I won’t talk too much about it for the sake of shortening this post, but I adored it. It’s by far my favourite (non re-read) of the year so far and I definitely recommend listening to the audiobook. I cannot wait for the next one. 4.5/5 stars

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman


So, I’ve come to the conclusion that I have a thing for Swedish humour authors. I love Jonas Jonasson’s books and now Fredrik Backman, This book was hilarious and heartwarming and just beautiful. I put if off for so long because honestly if you read the synopsis, it sounds boring as hell. I mean, I had heard great things about it, but even so I was never strongly tempted. But I’m so glad I gave it a try. I’m definitely going to be reading more of Backman’s books. 4.5/5 stars. 

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas


This was another re-read for me. I still loved it. I will say though, i definitely don’t love the writing. I don’t think I ever loved the writing, I just didn’t have any objections to it. But now I do. But I still just love the story and the characters and the world though so I still loved the book. But if I had read it for the first time now, I probably would have given it 4 stars because of the writing. However, since I tend not to change my rating for re-reads unless I have a vastly different opinion on them, it still got 5/5 stars.

The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson

alloy of law

Finally continued with the Mistborn books. I liked this a lot. I wouldn’t expect to not like any Sanderson books. But it’s probably my least favourite Sanderson book I’ve read so far. I think the main reason is that it’s so short. It’s not even 400 pages when I’m used to 1000 page monsters from him. And while it’s in an already established world so it doesn’t need as much world building, I still just wanted more and felt like this was just not on the same level as what I’m used to. If any other author had written this book, it would probably have been 4 stars at least. But on this occasion, Sanderson is just suffering from success, really (and my really high expectations) and only earned 3.5/5 stars.

Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier


This is probably my least favourite book that I read so far this year. I still enjoyed it, but it just lacked something. I think mainly, the main character just lacked agency and was just kind of a spectator to her own life. And that kind of annoyed me cause she had such potential to be a strong, badass character. I’m kind of happy with where I left the story, so I’m not sure if I will continue with this series. 3/5 stars

Keeper of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger


I was a little bit disappointed by this book. I had heard amazing things about it and while I enjoyed it, I didn’t love it. the writing was a bit tacky and it had some romance elements that I didn’t like. It’s a middle grade book, so I don’t want crushes and romance, I want magic and adventure and friendship. So it was so jarring whenever the romance elements showed up. It was like it just kept switching between middle grade and YA and I didn’t like it. But I did enjoy the adventure and the world and I am interested in continuing with the series, but I was just a little disappointed. 3.5/5 stars

Skulduggery Pleasant 10-12 by Derek Landy

I read the majority of the Skulduggery books last year and I’m just about caught up with it. I have one book left which I’m currently reading. This is just such a fun series and it did such a good job at following Valkyrie since she was a child and changing the tone of that as she grew. I love this series and I’m excited for anything else coming in the series. I’m not sure how many books are planned in the series, I know there is one coming out this year, but not sure beyond that. Either way, this is a solid 4 star series for me. 

And that is it for January. Hopefully, I continue as well as I did this month for the whole year. 

December 2019 Wrap Up

As I mentioned in my November wrap up, from now I will also include books I’ve DNFed or am partway through in my wrap-ups. I only completed 1 book in December as I was pretty slumpy and just wanted to play video games and watch Netflix. But I did read a fair bit of a few others.

Doctor Who – The Tenth Doctor Adventures Vol. 1 by Matt Fitton

I basically re-watched the first 7 series of Doctor Who in December and I was just in the mood for it. So when I saw this in a Audible deal, I had to get it. It’s the only book I completed in December, but it was great fun. I gave it 3.5 stars.

Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson


I started this in November. I didn’t read much of it in December, perhaps around 100 pages. I’m currently on page 324 of it. I jumped straight into this after finishing Words of Radiance, but I guess after about 1500 pages of the same story, I wanted a bit of a break. I’m definitely loving this book, but I did want to read other things as well. Also, I don’t want to finish it too soon, because then I have a whole year to wait for the next one.

Assassin’s Quest by Robin Hobb


I read Assassin’s Apprentice in November and surprised myself by picking this up almost straightaway. I got maybe 80% of the way into it. I’m audiobooking it, so I don’t know exactly what page. But I didn’t like something that happened and stopped. I’m not DNFing it, but I just wanted a break from it. Although I have to say, this is probably my favourite in the series, despite the thing that happened that I didn’t like.

The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow

ten thousand doors of january

I also read about 130 pages of this in the very last few days of December. I am enjoying it, but I realised now that I have a problem with magical realism. I thought it was a problem with Erin Morgenstern’s writing, because hers are really the only magical realism books I’d read, but I realise now that it’s the genre I have a problem with it. I enjoy it, but I don’t get immersed in it and I struggle to read a lot at a time. After reading 20-30 pages, I feel like I need to stop. Whereas with normal SFF books, I can easily read 80-100 pages before I start feeling tired. So now that I know that, I think I will actually enjoy magical realism more because I’ll just go into it with the mindset of reading it slowly and won’t get frustrated when I need to stop after only 20 pages.

Best books I read in 2019

Yesterday I talked about my least favourite books of 2019, so today I’ll talk about my favourite ones. Thankfully, the good certainly surpassed the bad this years at least in terms of what books I read if nothing else. I’ve discovered quite a few new faves and re-read some old favourites. I won’t talk about any of the re-reads, because I have quite a few new favourites to talk about. This year was the year of series for me. I read quite a few of them. So without me rambling any more, in the order I read them (more or less), here are my favourites of 2019.

Saga by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples

I read three volumes in 2019 and I loved them. This has become one of my favourite graphic novel series and I can’t wait to continue with it. The story is so good and the characters are amazing and there’s a cat that knows when people are lying and it’s just great. It’s the science-fiction fantasy type of story I’ve been craving ever since first reading The Broken Earth series. It’s nothing like that series, except that they’re both really good. I’m trying to pace myself because they are on hiatus at the moment, so I don’t want to run out too quickly, but I think I’m overdue for a volume soon.

Skyward by Brandon Sanderson


This is not the first Sanderson book on this list. I very nearly put all the Brandon Sanderson books I read in 2019 on here, but I wanted to limit myself to 10 books and I didn’t just want to talk about Brandon Sanderson. It was a choice between this and Elantris and while I did really like Elantris, I’ll be talking about another Cosmere book later on in the post, so I wanted to give a not to his YA sci-fi. I was honestly very pleasantly surprised by this. I questioned whether or not I would like it since it’s so different from the Cosmere books I’d read and part of what makes Sanderson’s books so good is how cool and creative his magic systems are. So I questioned whether I would like a sci-fi book. But I shouldn’t have because I flew through this and I will unquestioningly read Brandon Sanderson books from now on.

Monstress by Marjorie Liu & Sana Takeda

Another graphic novel series. 2019 was my year for delving into graphic novels. This one is the grimdark steampunk I never knew I wanted. It’s so good and weird and creepy and interesting. And the artwork is so good. I read the first two volumes last year and I can’t wait to read the rest. I’m once again pacing myself. There are 2 more volumes out and then I have to wait and I’m not sure how long. So I’m saving them for moments when I really need something amazing.

The Martian by Andy Weir


This was such a surprise for me. I thought I wouldn’t like it and ended up reading it in one day and it just made me happy. It’s a book about science where the science isn’t messed up. The majority of the books I didn’t like this year I didn’t like because of the way they used very inaccurate and implausible science. So this was great. It genuinely improved my mood at a time when I was very depressed and didn’t think anything could make me feel better. And that’s really all I need to say about this book, though I have reviewed it if you want to hear a bit more of my thoughts.

Holy Sister by Mark Lawrence

holy sister

I love this series and I know some people didn’t like this finale, but I really did and I can’t wait to read his new series in this world. I hope it’s just as good. I’m going to miss Nona, but I’m also very curious to know more about the world and hopefully the magic system. All I’m saying is magical assassin nuns. I have also reviewed this whole series if you’re interested in that.

Sadie by Courtney Summers


This is somewhat of a deviation from the SFF books that are predominant on this list. I like thrillers, but they have to be really good for me to like them. There are so many mediocre thrillers out there. But I digress. This books was so good, I could not stop. I definitely recommend it as an audiobook. It works so well because the whole book is basically a podcast. So listening to it on audio just makes it that much better. Definitely one of the best thrillers I’ve read recently. A great book totally deserving all the hype it got. I’ve reviewed this one as well.

Scythe by Neal Shusterman


I actually read this whole series in 2019, but I think only this first one is worthy of this list. I liked the second one a lot as well, but not enough for it to be on here. I hated the third one as I mentioned in my worst books post and also in my review of it. But this first book was great. I was hooked and it just reminded me of all the things I do enjoy about utopia/dystopia as genres. I don’t read much of that genre anymore because it’s so cliched and full of mediocre books, but this was so refreshing and cool. I am still fuming about the finale, but this is a positive post, so I’ll refrain from further ranting.

The Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson

This is probably my favourite Sanderson series that I’ve read this far. I’m so glad we are getting book 4 in 2020 because I’m about a quarter of the way through book 3. I read the first two in 2019. And it’s a testament to how amazing this series is that I easily got through 2 1000+ page books and I’m still super excited that this series has 10 BOOKS PLANNED!!! And it’s Brandon Sanderson, so there’s a real chance that we’ll actually get to read all 10 of them in this lifetime! God bless Brandon Sanderson, honestly. In a world full of Patrick Rothfusses and George R. R. Martins, we just need a Brandon Sanderson.

Circe by Madeline Miller


I avoided this for the longest time because I thought I’d find it boring, but I loved it. I really love mythology so I’m not sure why I thought I wouldn’t enjoy it. I guess the synopsis and the reviews I’d heard just made it sound boring. And it’s really hard to summarise this book without making it sound boring. But it’s actually great and I want Madeline Miller to write more mythology books please and thank you.

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

This is another series I put off for ages because everyone said it’s a historical fantasy and I though that would be a bit dull. Don’t ask why, I read medieval based fantasies all the time, but my brain hears ‘historical’ and thinks ‘oh, boring’. Even though I actually do enjoy historical fiction. LOGIC? WHAT LOGIC? But anyway, I can’t really articulate how much I loved this series. It made me feel happy and warm inside and I am grateful for it.

Worst Books I read in 2019

I was in a kind of reading slump for the majority of the year and as such I was very picky with what I read. So for the most part, I really enjoyed what I read. But as always, there are some books that missed the mark for me. These are in the order I read them in.

A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

a wizard of earthsea

This was one that I didn’t dislike at all, but I just found so forgettable, I hod to include it on this list. I never think about it and even as I was reading it, I was only ever mildly invested in it. It kind of felt like the outline for a good novel. Like it wasn’t quite fleshed out enough. And I was really disappointed because I’d heard a lot about Ursula K. Le Guin.

Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky

children of time

I really didn’t like this book. I had a lot of issues with the logic of it. It didn’t make sense to me in so many ways. I didn’t care about any of the characters and the story was in turns boring and confusing and just… wtf. And on top of that, I found the synopsis very misleading, so I went into it expecting something completely different. I’ve written a whole rant about it, so you can check that out, but this was barely 2 stars for me. I think more like 1.5 stars.

Lock In by John Scalzi

lock in

I think this was my only 1 star read for the year. I cannot find even one redeeming quality for it. The writing was bad, the characters were annoying, the audiobook narration was bad. I did not like anything about it. This was basically one of those super stereotypical crime thrillers… but the main character was kind of a robot. I really enjoyed John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War. That was funny, insightful and well written. I don’t know what happened with this one. But it was bad.

To Best the Boys by Mary Weber

to best the boys

I didn’t hate this one, but I found it boring and predictable. I was expecting it to some extent. I went into it with the expectation of your basic YA fantasy and that’s what I wanted to read at the time, but something about it really annoyed me. I think it was mainly the science. I noticed that inaccurate science really bugs me in books. Especially when the MC is supposed to be a scientist of some sort. Because it just shows a lack of research from the author on very simple things. If you’re going to incorporate science into your book, DO SOME RESEARCH!!!! I do have a review of it, so you can read that for more details.

The Toll by Neal Shusterman

the toll

This is the most shocking one on this list. I fully expected to love this as I loved the first two books, but I really didn’t like it. Namely, the ending. I didn’t have a problem with most of the book. At least, not anything that would cause me to write off the book. But how it ended, I HATED. It was stupid and disappointing. Just no. It’s not cool to build stuff up for 2 and a half books and then end the book like that. I have both a spoilery discussion and a spoiler free review of this, so you can check those out. For the longest time, I didn’t rate this because I was conflicted. On the one hand, it’s well written and so on, but on the other hand I hate the ending. I finally settled on 2 stars. I can’t bring myself to give it more than that.

Those are the worst books I read in 2019. There’s not many of them, I had a pretty good reading year. There are some books that I DNFed that are not included in this post, but I have a separate post about them.

November 2019 & Tome Topple Wrap Up

I had another pretty amazing reading month, although just as last month, the majority of the books I read were audiobooks (I sadly don’t have much time for actual reading 😦 ). Still I managed to read 11 books (plus a novella), DNF one and get partway through three others. So overall, pretty pleased with the amount of reading I’ve done.

As some of you may know, Tome Topple also happened in November and I participated in it this time around. You can check out my TBR for it here. I’m going to do this wrap up a bit differently. I’ve decided that from now on, I will also include DNFs and books I’m only partway through in my wrap up. It’s going to be a bit longer than usual, but I think this way more accurately captures my reading month.

Tome Topple books

For tome topple, I had 6 books on my TBR, 3 audio and 3 physical books. I was not expecting to read all of them by any means, but I wanted to have options.

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern


This was the first book on my physical TBR for the readathon and I started with it. I did not finish it, I got 150 pages in and I put it down. I’m not officially DNFing this, I still want to read it, but it was just not what I was in the mood to read at all. So I’m putting it to the side until I am in the mood to read it. My impressions from what I read so far were mostly positive, although as with The Night Circus, there’s just something about Erin Morgenstern’s writing that doesn’t quite click for me. I still think it’s beautiful, but I find it hard to read. I also think I like The Night Circus better. This is less magical. At least so far. My prediction is that this will be a 3.75-4 star read for me.

The Black Prism by Brent Weeks

black prism

This was the second book on my physical TBR for the readathon and I DNFed it. I’d started reading it a while ago and put it down because I didn’t like the characters. Any of them. I decided to give it another go because the world and the story seem cool, but I just don’t like any of the characters. I find them all annoying to the point that I can’t be in their heads. They all piss me off. I can’t tell you why exactly, they just all have thins… thing in common. I don’t know what it is, but basically you can tell they’re all written by the same person, because they have that je ne sais quoi in common and that’s what annoys me in all of them. I don’t know if I’m explaining that in a way that makes sense, but the gist of it is I don’t like the characters and I’m not going to commit to a series of 700 page books of being in their heads. I got about 180 pages in.

Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson

This was the third book on the physical TBR and I didn’t finish it. It’s huge, but it’s what I’m currently reading. I’m not sure how far I got during the actual readathon because I forgot to write it down, but I am currently on page 240 of it. I’m loving it as always. I do think there’s slightly too much Shallan and not enough Kaladin in it so far, but I’m sure I’ll get plenty of Kal in the remaining 1000 or so pages.

I also read the novella, Edgedancer before reading this. It’s not included in the Tome Topple TBR because it doesn’t fit the criteria for the readathon, but I’m mentioning it here because it’s the same series basically. I absolutely loved the novella, Lift is one of my favourite characters in the series and I can’t wait to see more of her. She’s so funny, she makes me laugh and she’s really interesting. I want to know more about her. I gave the novella 5/5 stars.

A Feast for Crows by G. R. R. Martin

feast for crows

Moving on to the audiobook section of my TBR, I first listened to this one. I don’t have much to say about it that you haven’t already heard. I love this series and I’m enjoying the re-read. I’m noticing things I hadn’t before and also remembering a lot of things I’d forgotten. It’s a good time and I really, REALLY hope we’ll get book 6 in this lifetime. 5/5 stars

The Toll by Neal Schusterman

the toll

Then I listened to this, which was one of my most anticipated books of the year. I was disappointed by the finale. I have mixed feelings about it. I didn’t give it a rating because I genuinely don’t know how to rate it. I didn’t like the ending. At all. It blindsided me in a way and normally I like that, but I think in this case, I found it to be stupid. I’m not going to go into it too much here, but I’ll probably have a discussion post about it. But I found it very unsatisfying.

That is it for the Tome Topple. Overall, I think I did okay, but could have been better. I wish I’d enjoyed more of the books I’d read, but can’t love everything. Moving on to the rest of the books I read this month.

Non-tome topple books

Winternight books 2 & 3 by Katherine Arden

After reading the first book at the end of October, I quickly binged the rest of the series and it’s now one of my favourite series. I put it off for so long and I ended up loving it so much (story of my life). I read it at the perfect time as well, it’s perfect for winter and now I’m trying to get my friend to read it too so I can gush to her about it. I was tempted to immediately start reading it again when I finished, but I resisted. 5/5 stars for the whole series. I hope Katherine Arden writes more fairy-tale books. Her and Naomi Novik just please write more fairy-tales.

The Return of the King by J. R. R. Tolkien


I also completed my re-read of this series in November as well. It made me cry. I love this series so much, it’s such a huge part of my childhood and and just who I am as a person and it is so special to me. I don’t have words. Of course I gave it 5/5 stars.

Narnia books 1-6 by C. S. Lewis

Narnia bindup

After finishing LOTR, I had the urge to also re-visit the Narnia books and I honestly think I’m enjoying them more now as an adult than I did as a kid. I listened to the first 6 books in rapid succession and I’m kind of sad that there are only 7 of them.

Royal Assassin by Robin Hobb

Finally continued with the Farseer books. As with the first one. I liked it, but I don’t care about the characters (except for the animals). I don’t dislike them, I’m just indifferent and detached from them. So I’m not loving the books as much as I could. I still find the story interesting, particularly once you get past the one third mark in each book, it’s actually quite gripping. I will continue with the series and hopefully, I will eventually come to care about the characters, if not in this series, then in consequent ones. I gave it 3.5/5 stars.

Books I have started

The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang

poppy war

This is my current audiobook. I’m maybe 30% into it. I’m enjoying it thus far, but… I don’t think It’s going to be a favourite. It might surprise me, I don’t know. But so far I’m not loving it as much as everyone who’s been raving about it. I like a lot of aspects of it, but I also have issues with a few things like the blatant drug abuse that goes on and at least so far, it seems like it’s almost… encouraged? It’s really weird and btw, if drug abuse and addiction is a trigger for you, definitely stay away from the series. And then there’s this scene (minor spoiler ahead) where Rin destroys her uterus and like fair enough, that’s her decision to make, but it was done so quickly. Like, there was no pondering or consideration for it. One of the characters does briefly address the fact that it’s literally removing one of your major organs… to get rid of your period? And yeah, she was young and didn’t quite understand what that means and she was scared because she hadn’t known about periods. But still, I feel that should have received more page time than it did. (spoiler ends) 

That concludes my wrap up. Sorry, I know it was a long one, but I had a lot going on this month!

Books I’ve DNFed

I used to never officially DNF books, I’d just put them down and say I’d pick them up later. As such, they haven’t really been included in my wrap-ups. But I’ve been DNFing books more of late (though I still struggle to do it). So I’m just going to talk about the books that I have DNFed and my reasons for doing so.

The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman

I really enjoyed the first book in this series, but not so much this second one. This was quite a few years ago, it’s one of the few books that I DNFed back then. I’ve been thinking of re-reading the series and giving them another chance, but I’m not sure, we’ll see.

Nicolae by Tim Lahaye and Jerry B. Jenkins

This is a series that I thought had an interesting premise, but I just found the writing really annoying and the characters dis-likeable. I read the first two books in the series, but gave up halfway through the third one. This is another one that I DNFed quite some years ago.

The Inca’s Legacy by Karl May

I really loved Karl May’s Winnetou books. I read them multiple times and it was one of my favourite series growing up. So I really wanted to like this. But I could not get into it. I tried at least 3 times and never got further than maybe 30 pages in.

Closer by Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams

Another series I really loved as a kid. For some reason though I just didn’t finish this. It got to a point in the story that dragged a bit and I didn’t own the book, I was lending it from my cousin, so I ended up giving it back cause I was taking too long to read it and I just never picked this series up again. I probably would have finished at least this book if I had owned it, but alas, that ship has sailed because there’s no way I’m re-reading this series just so I can finish this book.

Inferno by Dante Aligheri

I tried. I really wanted to enjoy this. But I just don’t really like stories told in verse. Maybe if I can find a version in prose, I’ll consider reading it, but who knows.

The Game by Terry Schott

I don’t remember much about this other than that it was terrible. I managed to get through maybe 80% of it, but man was this a mess of a book. I know it’s about a VR game, like so many other books. But it’s just so bad.

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Really liked The Raven Boys, but this one was just bad and boring and… basically twilight but with werewolves rather than vampires.

Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier


I wanted to like this. The premise was really cool and I still think it’s a great concept, but the story itself and the characters were just not great. The MC (I forget her name… was it Gewn?) was so annoying. There was insta-love. It just wasn’t for me.

Dodger by Terry Pratchett


I have huge respect for Terry Pratchett and I have enjoyed some of this other books, but this one wasn’t for me. It’s not by any means a bad book, but it’s just one I don’t have the patience for.

The Bat by Jo Nesbo

the bat

This was recommended to me by one of my friends and I wanted to like it, but I found it boring and not at all thrilling. Cop thrillers have to be really good for me to enjoy them. I can watch 10 seasons of Criminal Minds, no problem, but usually police procedural books have some tropes I just despise.

State of Sorrow by Melinda Salisbury

state of sorrow

I even unhauled this. I didn’t like Melinda Salisbury’s other book either, The Sin Eater’s Daughter. She always has these really cool premises, but the books themselves are so bland and the characters I just find insufferable. It’s a really pretty book, but I couldn’t get past the 50 page mark.

The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding by Alexandra Bracken

dreadful tale of prosper redding

I wish I’d liked this more than I did. I got about halfway through it, but it just failed to keep me interested. I could have finished it, it wasn’t bad, I didn’t hate it. but I also just didn’t really care, so I decided to just DNF it. This is also one that I will be unhauling soon.

The Kingdom of Copper by S. A. Chackraborty

kingdom of copper

I read the first book and it was a pleasant surprise for me. I really enjoyed it. This one, I just lost interest. Kind of like with Prosper Redding, It couldn’t hold my attention and I just stopped caring. It was too slow to get to the point, I think. There were a lot of things going on that I didn’t care about. And I didn’t really care about the characters. And since I’ve resolved to DNF books I’m not enjoying, I’m DNFing it.

Viper by Bex Hogan


I did a read a chapter challenge a while back and this was part of it. I had decided to keep this and give it a chance, but when I tried and read a few more chapters, I just wasn’t feeling it, so this will be unhauled soon as well.

October 2019 Wrap Up

I have read 10 books this month. I think that’s the most I’ve read in a month this year. Which is surprising, because I’m quite busy. But most of these were audiobooks, so that explains it. I listen to them while at work.

Jeff Wayne’s The War of The Worlds: The Musical Drama by H. G. Wells & Jeff Wayne

war of the worlds

This was a highly entertaining audio drama complete with sound effects. It was really fun listening to. It wasn’t the most outstanding story, but the format made it worth listening to. I do recommend it. It’s not very long, so if you like sci fi, you’ll probably like this. I gave it 3.75 stars.

Circe by Madeline Miller


This is a book that deserves its hype. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Also listened to it on audio and the narration was really good. This book reminded me of all the reasons I love mythology and I want more mythology written by Madeline Miller. It’s just great. I gave it 4/5 stars. 

The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien


I carried on with my re-read of this series in October. I’m really enjoying them as audiobooks. I’m going to continue with the final one this month. I don’t think this book needs me to talk about it. 5/5 stars.

Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson

words of radiance

In fairness, I didn’t read the whole book this month. It is huge. But I did read a considerable chunk of it this month and finally finished it. I loved it even more than the first book if that’s possible. I already have book 3 and I am trying to restrain myself from jumping right in because I know I’ll have to wait a long time after that. So I’m trying to force myself to at least wait a few more weeks. This series probably my favourite Sanderson series that I’ve read to date. So yeah, super excited. 5/5 stars.

Hitman Anders and the Meaning of it All by Jonas Jonasson


This one was a bit of a disappointment for me. I really enjoy Jonas Jonasson’s books and this one wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great either. I even unhauled it after finishing it. I did listen to it on audio and the narrator was great as usual, but the story and charactersjust wasn’t as good as his stories usually are. I gave it 2.75 stars.

The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

I then started reading and quickly binged all the published books in this series (except for the novella). I’ve been putting this series off for a while, but as I often find it to be the case with series I put off, I really enjoyed it. I didn’t know much about it going into it. In fact, I knew almost nothing about it besides the fact that it was set in our world. But this is a very entertaining paranormal dystopian type story. It’s really addictive, it’s often dramatic and it’s super action packed. I gave the first two books 4/5 stars and the third 3.75/5 stars and I look forward to continuing with this series.

The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan


I was really craving some more mythology after reading Circe so I decided to continue with this series. I’m  not enjoying it as much as any of his other series, unfortunately, but I want to get to The Trials of Apollo. It wasn’t bad by any means, but it was just not as much fun as his books usually are for some reason. I ended up giving it 3.75 stars.

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden


Last, but certainly not least, I finally read this beautiful book. Another one I’d been putting off for ages, but ended up really loving. It’s just everything I love in a fairy-tale book. It reminds me of Naomi Novik’s fairy-tales and I just want both of them to write more of them. I already bought the second book and will read it as soon as it arrives. This book just made me happy and made me feel like a child reading it. 5/5 stars.

September 2019 Wrap Up

I’m slowly coming out of my reading slump. The past few days, I’ve been reading 100+ pages a day, so I’m pleased. I was still pretty slumpy for most of the month, but I did manage to read 5 books.

The Merciful Crow by Margaret Owen

merciful crow

This book was a pleasant surprise for me. I have already reviewed it, so you can check that out for more of my thoughts, but I enjoyed this book. It was exactly what I wanted to read. I was looking for an easy, fun YA to ease me back into reading after my huge slump. And this was exactly that. It wasn’t overly complex, it was fast paced, had adventure, had some cool magic, had some monsters and some corpses. I gave it 3.5 stars. I might even continue with the series. Who knows.

The Knife of Never letting Go by Patrick Ness

knife of never letting go

I’ve been putting this off for ages. I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy it. I’m pretty over dystopians, this is quite an old book. But I mentioned in my end of the year TBR post that I would unhaul this if I hadn’t read it by the end of the year. So I decided to pick it up and ended up really enjoying it. I flew through it in a couple of days. It was constant action, it made me feel feels and it’s just great. I shouldn’t have doubted Patrick Ness having read A Monster Calls. 4/5 stars, will be continuing with this.

The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien

fellowship of the ring

I’ve been meaning to re-read this series for a long time and I’m finally doing it. I listened to the audiobook which I really enjoyed. I feel like I wouldn’t have the patience to re-read it as a physical book because I’ve read the series 3 times and it’s not something that you can read quickly because of the writing style. But as an audiobook, I don’t feel like I’m cutting into the time I have to read books on my TBR. 5/5 stars of course and I will be carrying on with the audiobooks soon.

Obsidio by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff


Finally finished this series. I was somewhat disappointed. It was kind of repetitive and predictable and I didn’t really find myself motivated to read it. I did enjoy it, especially once I got the audiobook and was both reading the book and listening to it. That is definitely what I recommend for this series if you’re able to. Because it’s just such an experience. But I was pretty underwhelmed by it story-wise. I gave it 3.75 stars, though in retrospect that was probably because I really enjoyed the experience of listening to the audio production and seeing the mixed media. It’s just really cool, but I think i reality, it’s closer to 3 stars.

Grief Is the Thing With feathers by Max Porter

grief is the thing with feathers

This was a weird one. I liked it but didn’t love it. I guess it’s hard to love something like this. But it was very weird and confusing at times. It is also very raw. And I feel like that’s an accurate portrayal of grief. Grief is weird and confusing and raw. I ended up giving it 3.5/5 stars.