Hi guys, it’s time for another wrap up. I actually had a pretty good reading month. I read a total of 11 books – 6 of which were 4 star reads, so I am quite happy with that. I was definitely in more of a reading mood this month and there was some fantastic fantasy books. Let’s get started.
The Cossacks and Hadji Murat / Leo Tolstoy / ★★★
To be completely honest I wasn’t blown away by either of these stories. Having said that Tolstoy’s writing is fantastic and the characters are all complex. I just didn’t love it quite as much as the other books I’ve read from Tolstoy. You can’t deny that Tolstoy is a great writer though.
All for Nothing / Walter Kempowski / ★★★
While I did end up liking this, I didn’t love it. The narrative style is a little jarring and so it took me some time to get into it. The characters are well written but I had very little connection with any of them. It is an interesting read as you get a look into the life of a German family during the last years of the war, but although it was interesting I didn’t find it particularly engaging at times. I found it dragged at certain points. Overall I thought this was a good book but I didn’t love it. If you love historical fiction set in this time period, I would definitely recommend checking this out.
Vanguard / Jack Campbell / ★★★
Book 1 of the Genesis Fleet series. It took me a little while to get into this book, but I ended up enjoying it. I thought it was an entertaining read and the plot was mostly engaging. The characters were a little flat at times and I wanted a bit more character development. Having said that, I did still like them. I haven’t read the other series set in the same world, so I don’t know how they relate but I didn’t feel like I was missing anything significant, if that makes sense. Basically you can read this without reading the other series. I think it was lacking a little bit in explanations at times (in terms of the world, technology etc), but generally it’s an interesting world. The action was done well and I enjoyed the battle scenes. Overall I thought this was an enjoyable science fiction book and I am interested to see how things progress.
The Goddess Chronicle / Natsuo Kirino / ★★★.5
Although I did think this was a good book, I think the premise worked better in theory than in practice. I loved the idea of this book but something just didn’t quite work for me. The characters were well written, the writing is good and as I’ve already mentioned the premise is great. From what I understand this is a retelling of two deities from Japanese mythology – Izanami and Izanagi. Perhaps if I had prior knowledge I would have enjoyed this more. Having said that, I did still think this book was great and was an interesting look into Japanese mythology.
Words of Radiance: Part 1 / Brandon Sanderson / ★★★.5
This is part 1 of the second book in the Stormlight Archives series. I think I would actually rate it somewhere between 3.5 stars and 4 stars. I thought this was a great continuation of this series. It was a little slow to begin with and it took some time to get into it. For me, Kaladin’s perspective was the best and I sometimes struggled a bit with Shallan. Having said that I thought the character development was well done. So far I definitely haven’t loved this series as much as other people but it is still really good. I would recommend this series to any fantasy lover and I’m looking forward to see how things progress in part 2.
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd / Agatha Christie / ★★★★
This is the third book by Christie that I’ve read and like the two others I really enjoyed this book. I really enjoy Poirot as a character and the mysteries are always fun to read. I definitely had some suspicion about the killer in the book and I was right in the end, but it didn’t take anything away from the enjoyment to seeing it all unfold. I’m looking forward to reading more from this author.
Heart’s Blood / Juliet Marillier / ★★★★
I didn’t know much going into this so it surprised me to realise this is a Beauty and the Beast retelling. I think Marillier’s writing is great and it is so easy to get immersed in the worlds of her books. Having said that I found this one a little slow to start but not necessarily in a bad way. The characters are all well written and they are some really intriguing ones. Overall I thought this was great and I look forward to reading more from this author.
The Moon in the Palace / Weina Dai Randel / ★★★★
This is a fantastic historical fiction set in Ancient China – it is loosely set around the only female in Chinese history to rule as an Emperor, Empress Wu. I don’t know alot about Chinese history but I find it fascinating so when I saw this was set in Ancient China I was sold. I thought the writing was great and so easy to get into. I will definitely be checking out the second and final book in this duology, The Empress of Bright Moon. I highly recommend this, especially if you love historical fiction. Full review to come soon.
Knight’s Shadow / Sebastien de Castell / ★★★★
This is the second book in the Greatcoats series and I enjoyed it just as much as I enjoyed the first book. I find these books so easy to read and they are just so entertaining. If you are looking for a fun, light fantasy read then you should definitely check these books out. I don’t know how long this series is but I am so excited to continue on with these books.
The Legion of Flame / Anthony Ryan / ★★★★
This is the second book in the Draconis Memoria series and it is one of my most anticipated releases of this year. For anyone interested, it is being released in the UK on 6th July in hardback. I thought this was a fantastic continuation of this series. It was great to be back with these characters. Full review to come closer to the release date.
Sons of the Shadow / Juliet Marillier / ★★★★
I thought this was a fantastic continuation of this series. I don’t think it was better than the first book but I think it was just as good. Once again the characters were great and the writing is fantastic. I am very excited to continue on with this trilogy. Full review coming soon.
I don’t really know what I’m going to be reading in June. I’m actually going away at the start of June for two weeks in Greece, so I don’t know if I’ll be reading much or what to put on my tbr. My classic pick will probably be Sylvia’s Lover by Elizabeth Gaskell or The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Other than that I’m just going to read what I want. I am currently reading Hunting the Eagle by Ben Kane and Saint’s Blood by Sebastien de Castell so hopefully I’ll have them finished by the end of the month too, or at least before I go away. What was your favourite book you read in May? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.