April Wrap Up and May TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s the end of the month which means it’s time for another monthly wrap up post. I read 5 books and I’m about half way through another book right now. April was my birthday month so I got more books to add to my TBR and I got to see Hamilton in London, so I had a pretty good month. Let’s get started.

 

The Poppy War / book 1 of a trilogy / R. F. Kuang / ★★
This was one of my anticipated releases of this year but it didn’t quite work for me. I have a full review coming soon so I’m not going to go into too much detail. Basically I wasn’t invested in the characters or the plot, although I enjoyed the military aspect and the world.

 

Blood of Assassins / book 2 of the Wounded Kingdom series / R. J. Barker / ★★★
I have a full review of this up so I’m not going to go into too much detail here. Overall I thought this was a good continuation of this series, although I did find the main character to be quite frustrating. I enjoyed the plot and it’s well written. If you enjoy fantasy with assassins then this series is worth checking out.

 

The Wolves of Winter / Tyrell Johnson / ★★★.5
* I received a digital copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
This is set in Canada after a nuclear war and the fast spread of disease and follows a small group of people trying to survive. I didn’t really know what to expect when I started this as I knew very little about it but I ended up really quite enjoying it. It is a little predictable and I found the main character a tad frustrating at times but overall I enjoyed this book. I have to admit that it took me a little while to get into it but after a couple of chapters I was hooked. The author does a wonderful job at creating a suspenseful atmosphere that builds throughout the book. I think the frequent use of profanity may be a little off putting for some, so that may be something to be aware of. This book is also not for the faint hearted as it deals with violence and sexual assault. The characters are well written and the world building is good. It is a little ambiguous but I think that lends itself to the mystery of the book.

 

Fool’s Quest / book 2 in the Fitz and the Fool trilogy / Robin Hobb / ★★★★
I don’t have much to say about this book; it’s by Hobb so of course it was fantastic. I am both excited and nervous to finally be completing this series. If you enjoy fantasy books then you need to check out Robin Hobb.

 

Revelation / book 4 in the Shardlake series / C. J. Sansom / ★★★★★
I’ve enjoyed every book in this series so it was no surprise to me that I enjoyed this instalment. I think this is probably my favourite book of the series so far. As with the previous books the writing is great and I loved the story of this instalment. It was great to be back with these characters too. I am excited to continue on with this series. If you enjoy historical fiction books then I highly recommend checking this series out.

 

 

That’s all I read last month. I’m not setting myself any TBR for May, although I do want to finish The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins. What was your favourite read from April? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

March Wrap Up and April TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s time for another monthly wrap. I read six books this month, all of which I rated four stars, so it was a pretty good reading month. In other news it was also a great month because I passed my driving test. I drove for the first time on my own too, which was pretty weird but also great. Anyway I’m going to start my wrap up now.

 

The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future / Victor Cha / ★★★★
 This was an interesting non-fiction book about North Korea and my first non-fiction read of this year. I find this region of the world fascinating but I don’t know a lot about it. This was an engaging read, although some things definitely went over my head a bit. Despite this I think this was written in quite an accessible way and it provides a wide range of information about this region.

 

The Dragon Queen / William Andrews / 
I thought this was a fantastic book. From the very beginning I was invested in the story and found it easy to settle into the flow of the writing. This book is split into two perspectives; first we follow a US diplomat in the present day and then we also follow the story of a queen of Korea during the 1800’s. Although I enjoyed both of the perspectives, I did find Ja-young’s more compelling. I loved reading about this time period as I didn’t know a lot about it and I found it really interesting to read about. I definitely plan to find out more about this time period and queen. The characters are all well written and complex, and the relationships between the characters were well developed. The plot is compelling throughout, which made this quite a quick read for me because I was so absorbed in the story. Once I’d started reading I didn’t want to put it down. Overall this was a great read and I would highly recommend checking it out, especially if you enjoy historical fiction.

 

 

 

The Wolf / Leo Carew / ★★★★
*I received a digital copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
This was a fantastic introduction to this new epic historical fantasy. Once I’d started reading I was hooked and didn’t want to put this book down. The plot is compelling throughout, with some great action scenes and political intrigue. There is a great cast of characters, although I did want to see more women in this book. The characters are very well written though, and there are so many great characters that I want to see more from. Unfortunately I thought the world building was a bit lacking. I wanted to know more about the land in which these characters live and more of the history of the world. In terms of the writing, in general it was good, but perhaps a little too heavy on descriptions at times and repetitive. I have to admit to skim reading some sections of this book due to this. Overall I very much enjoyed this book and would highly recommend checking it out. I will definitely be checking out the next book in this series. I will have a full review up soon.

 

An Echo Of Things To Come / James Islington / ★★★★
I have a full review of this scheduled for next month so I’ll keep this brief. I thought this was a fantastic sequel. It was great to be back with these characters and I really enjoyed where the plot was taken. At times the pacing is quite slow, but I still found it to be a compelling read. The world building is great and I loved the way it was expanded in this sequel. Overall I really enjoyed this book and I can’t wait to see how things conclude in the third and final book.

 

River of Stars / Guy Gavriel Kay / ★★★★
This is the second book in the Under Heaven duology. Kay is fast becoming a new favourite author of mine. I definitely didn’t love this quite as much as I loved Under Heaven but it was still fantastic. It took me a little while to get into this one, although I loved the setting straight away. There are a lot of characters to keep track of so you need to be paying attention to fully grasp what is happening with each character. Speaking of the characters though, they are all incredibly well written. The world building is fantastic and I love Kay’s writing style. Overall I loved this book and I cannot wait to read more from this author.

 

Fool’s Assassin / book 1 of the Fitz and the Fool trilogy / Robin Hobb / 
 Obviously this was fantastic. It was so good to be back in this world and with these characters. The pacing of this book is quite slow, but the writing is so good that it is still an engaging read.  As with all other Hobb books I’ve read, the characters are so well written and the world building is fantastic. I can’t say enough good things about this author and series of books. I am very excited to continue on with this trilogy.

 

This month I’m not going to set myself a TBR. I’m just going to read what I want to read at the time. Right now I am reading Revelation by C. J. Sansom, which is the fourth book in the Shardlake series. What was your favourite read in March? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

February Wrap Up and March TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It is the end of the month which means its time for another reading wrap up. I’ve read 4 books this month and I stopped reading one book. Other than reading, I have been loving watching the Winter Olympics. Anyway, let’s get started.

 

The Fifth Season / book 1 of the Broken Earth trilogy / N. K. Jemisin / DNF
Unfortunately, this book just didn’t work for me, so I stopped reading after roughly 120 pages. The main issue I had was with the writing. I really like the concept of this book and the world building I read was great, but I struggled with the writing. I just couldn’t get into the flow of the story. This one wasn’t for me, but don’t let that put you off as it’s got a lot of great reviews. I seem to be in the minority here.

 

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Shroud of Eternity / book 2 in the Nicci Chronicles / Terry Goodkind / ★★★
To be honest, I didn’t enjoy this as much as the first book, but I still thought it was a good book. I don’t know why but I found myself more aware of the writing while reading this sequel and the repetitive nature of the writing annoyed me a little bit. The plot had potential but I felt it was a little lacking and there wasn’t enough character development. Despite this I did still enjoy reading this book and I’ve also learnt that this isn’t a duology as I thought. I have more thoughts for this book so a full review will be up soon.

 

Elysium Fire / book 2 of the Prefect Dreyfus Emergency series / Alastair Reynolds / ★★★.5
* I received a digital copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
I had no idea that this was part of a series when I requested it, but I still ended up enjoying this book. I think I would have benefited from reading the first book, however it’s not completely necessary – some things may have just gone over my head a bit. I thought the plot was compelling, the characters are well written and it was easy to settle into the flow of the writing. I find that I really enjoy sci-fi crime stories so this was an enjoyable read for me. Reynold’s does a great job of creating tension that builds throughout the book. Overall I thought this was a great read and I am definitely interested in checking out other books by this author.

 

Jade Dragon Mountain / book 1 of the Li Du Novels / Elsa Hart / ★★★.5
I really enjoyed this book. The setting was what drew me to this book in the first place and it didn’t disappoint. The mystery was well written and I liked that it’s left to the reader to try and figure things out until it’s resolved at the end. I like mystery books that allow the reader to come to their own conclusions. One thing that did frustrate me though, was the villain in the ending. He basically admits everything and doesn’t seem at all bothered that he’s been caught… to me that doesn’t make sense. I never quite understand villains who confess to everything and tells everyone their evil plan, but maybe that’s just me. I still really enjoyed this book and I am interested in reading it’s sequel.

 

The Good People / Hannah Kent / ★★★.5
This is a historical fiction book set in Ireland in 1825.  I thought the plot was compelling, the writing was great and the characters were complex and flawed. This is the second book I’ve read by this author and I have to say she writes very atmospheric books. In this book Kent does a great job at creating an atmosphere of unease that grows toward the end of the book. It is quite a bleak story and the pacing is quite slow, because we are more focused on the characters and their development. Overall I thought this was a great book and would definitely recommend, especially if you enjoy historical fiction. If you enjoyed her other book, Burial Rites, then I think you will enjoy this book too.

 

Sovereign / book 3 of the Cromwell series / C. J. Sansom / ★★★★
This was a fantastic instalment to this series and it was great to be back with these characters. Sansom has once again written a compelling story and a mystery that will keep you guessing until the end. The character development through this book was great to see and I can’t wait to see how things progress in the next books. Basically this book was just as fantastic as the first two and I am excited to get to the three other books in this series.

 

The Initiate Brother and Gatherer of Clouds / Initiate Brother duology / Sean Russell / ★★★★
This was a fantastic fantasy duology with great characters, a compelling plot and an intriguing world. One of my favourite things about this duology is the political intrigue. Personally I love fantasy with political intrigue and this book does it so well. It is so interesting to see the inner workings of this world and how each of the characters interact with each other. Russell has done a great job at creating intricate story-lines and threading them all together. The world is wonderfully realised and it was so interesting to see the different cultures and beliefs. Overall I thought this was a fantastic duology and I would highly recommend it, especially if you enjoy political intrigue alongside fantasy.

 

I am currently reading Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb, which is the first book in the Fitz and the Fool trilogy. In terms of my TBR for March, I think I’ll continue on with the Shardlake series by C. J. Sansom and I want to read Moonstone by Wilkie Collins. Other than that I’ll just see what I feel like reading at the time. I may try to get some rereading done in March, because there are quite a few books that I want to revisit. What was your favourite book you read in February? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

January Wrap Up and February TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s time for my first wrap up of the year. I read 7 books this month, one of which is my first 5 star read of the year. I started this year off with some fantastic books. I can’t believe that in a few weeks I will have been blogging for two years. It’s gone by pretty fast. Anyway let’s get started with my mini reviews.

 

Spiderlight / Adrian Tchaikovsky / ★★★
Although I kind of got the feeling that this started off in the middle of a story, I thought this was a great book. The story starts off very quickly and I almost felt that it was missing part of the story, but after the first chapter I had settled into the flow of the plot. This is a classic fantasy quest story, where the characters are given a task and we follow them as the complete said task. The characters were well written, the plot was engaging and the writing was easy to get into, although the dialogue can be a little clunky. Overall a good book that was a quick and entertaining read.

 

Dune: Messiah / Frank Herbert / ★★★
I definitely didn’t love this as much as the first book, Dune, but it was still a good book. I enjoyed being back in this world. As with Dune this book was a little dated but I found it easy to get into the flow of the story and the plot was engaging. This sequel just didn’t captivate me like the first book did. Overall I’m glad I read it and I thought it was a good book, but I didn’t love it as much as Dune.

 

Black Wolves / Kate Elliott / book 1 of Black Wolves series / ★★★
This one was a bit mixed for me. There were some things that I really enjoyed and other things that just didn’t work for me. Firstly, I think the setting was great and I really like the idea of the reeves. The politics and intrigue throughout the book was good. There are some really interesting characters in this book, although keeping track of all the characters was initially a bit confusing. The time jump at the beginning of the book threw me a little but after a few chapters I adjusted to it. Another issue I had was that I felt that it was too long. There were a few scenes that seemed unnecessary and it bogged down the narrative. It sometimes felt like there was too much going on and it needed some focus. The pacing was a little uneven at times too. It took me quite some time to get invested in this book; it wasn’t until over 200 pages in that I felt that I had finally started to get into it. Overall this was a good introduction to this series but I didn’t love it as much as I wanted to. At the moment I am planning to continue with this series.

 

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo / Stieg Larsson / book 1 in the Millennium trilogy / ★★★★
I’ve been to start this series for a while now and I finally decided to pick it up this month. I thought it was fantastic. It is definitely quite a dark and disturbing book but the plot is so compelling and the atmosphere of suspense is so well done. The characters are wonderfully complex and flawed, and although this author is new to me I found it easy to get into the flow of the writing. The mystery elements were also really well done and I was constantly wondering how it was going to unfold. As I’ve said, I thought this was a fantastic book and I will definitely be continuing on with this trilogy.

 

Pachinko / Min Jin Lee / ★★★★
Not only did I find this to be a fantastic book, but it was also very interesting. I don’t know a lot about the history of this area of the world so it was fascinating to me to read about it. Although I can sometimes find shifts in time a little jarring, I didn’t really have that issue with this book. It may be something to be aware of though, as most chapters will move forward at least a couple of years. The characters are all very well written, but the wide span of years means that you never really feel fully attached to any of them. Personally I didn’t mind this, because I thought the backdrop was so interesting and the characters are all still complex and flawed. I thought the writing was great and I found it so easy to become immersed in the story. Overall I really enjoyed this book and I would highly recommend checking this book out, especially if you enjoy historical fiction.

 

The Bitter Twins / Jen Williams / book 2 of the Winnowing Flame trilogy / ★★★★
This is one of my most anticipated book releases of this year and I am happy to say it does not disappoint. I thought this was a fantastic sequel and it was great to be back in this world. I probably should have reread the first book before reading this as I was a little foggy on the details, but after a couple of chapters I was fully immersed in the world again. As with the first book, the writing is great, the story is compelling and the characters are well written. I will have a full review closer to the release date so keep an eye out for that.

 

Under Heaven / Guy Gavriel Kay / ★★★★★
I’ve had my eye on this book for a while now and I am so happy that I finally picked this up. As you can see from the rating this is my first five star book of the year. I thought it was fantastic. The plot is compelling, the writing is great and the world building is so well done. From the very beginning I was immersed in the characters and the world. The politics and intrigue in this book are fantastic. I personally love fantasy with intrigue and it is one of the strengths of this book. You never really know where peoples loyalties lie and so you are constantly wondering what each character will do next. Basically I absolutely loved this book and I would highly recommend checking it out. I will definitely be reading more by this author. I am planning to write a full review of this one too.

 

I’ve not really thought about what I want to read next so I don’t have a set TBR for February. I’m just going to read what I feel like at the time. I am currently reading Sovereign by C. J. Sansom, which is the third book in the Cromwell series. My favourite book of the month was definitely Under Heaven. What was the best book you read in January? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

December Wrap Up and January TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s time for the last wrap up of 2017. This month I read a lot of great books which is a pretty good way to end this reading year.

 

Monstress Vol 1: Awakening  Marjorie M. Liu (writer) & Sana Takeda (artist) / ★★★
While I did end up enjoying this graphic novel, I did also have some issues with it. Firstly, let’s talk about the positives. I loved the art style and the premise is an interesting one. I thought the main character was intriguing and I’m definitely interested to see more of her. My favourite characters were probably Kippa and Master Ren, though. I think the depth of the characters is a little lacking as we don’t know a lot about any of them but perhaps that will come in later volumes. Some of the artwork of Maiko with the monster on her arm really reminded me of Ashitaka from the Studio Ghibli film, Princess Mononoke, when he’s cursed. Anyway let’s talk about some of the issues I had. I thought that the world building was quite lacking. Perhaps it’s to keep the mysterious aspect of it all but I wanted more explanations of things, like the world and the mask. I also felt that the plot was kind of confusing at times so it was a little tricky to keep up with it. Another thing to be aware of is the level of violence and gore in this graphic novel. If you are not a fan of blood and gore then I would probably miss this one out. Overall I thought this was good but I didn’t love it as much as I wanted to. I will probably be checking out the second volume at some point.

 

The Night Without Stars / Peter F. Hamilton / ★★★★
This is the second and final book in the Chronicle of the Fallers duology. I was initially a bit worried that it has been a while since I read the first book but I actually found it quite easy to get back into the flow of the story. As with the first book, the plot is compelling and the world is an interesting one.  I think the plot did drag a little at times but these sections never lasted for long. We see some familiar characters as well as meeting some new ones. I found that all of the characters are well written, although some were a little lacking in depth. Overall I thought this was a fantastic continuation of this series and I would highly recommend checking it out.

 

The Makioka Sisters / Jun’ichirō Tanizaki / ★★★★
I’ve had this on my shelf for quite some time now so I’m glad that I finally picked it up. This book was originally written in Japanese and my edition was translated by  Edward G. Seidensticker. I thought this was a fantastic book. It was definitely quite slow at times but the insight into Japanese culture at the time and an insight into the dynamics of the Makioka family. The writing was easy to get into and you become quickly invested in the story. The characters are definitely a strength of this book. I really enjoyed seeing them progress through the 500 page book. Overall I thought this was a great read and I would recommend checking it out.

 

A Natural History of Dragons / Marie Brennan / ★★★★
This is the first book in the Lady Trent series. I have to admit that I’ve been debating on whether to read this series for quite a while now and I finally decided to try it out this month. From the beginning I found the story to be compelling, despite being quite different to a lot of fantasy I’ve read. The characters were well written and the writing is good. Basically I really enjoyed this book and a full review will be posted in January.

 

The Tropic of Serpents / Marie Brennan / ★★★★
This is the second book in the Lady Trent series. I thought this was a fantastic continuation from the first book and it was great to be back in this world. Once again it was an easy and enjoyable read; I may have even enjoyed this one slightly more than the first book. It was great to be back with these characters and I enjoyed meeting the new ones too. I will be continuing on with this series, although I haven’t got my hands on the next book yet.

 

Tales from Watership Down / Richard Adams / ★★★★
Watership Down is one of my all time favourite books so of course I enjoyed this short story collection. I love the writing, the stories are compelling and it was great to be back with familiar characters. Basically I really enjoyed this book and it kind of makes me want to reread Watership Down.

 

Death’s Mistress / Terry Goodkind / ★★★★
I picked this one up on a bit of a whim in a bookshop and I am glad that I did as I really enjoyed this book. Now this follows a character that is first introduced in another series by this author which I have not read but I didn’t have any issues getting into the flow of the story. The writing is easy to get into, the plot is compelling and the characters are well written. The second book is set to be released in January and I will definitely be checking it out. I will have a full review of this up at some point.

 

The Girl in the Tower / Katherine Arden / ★★★★★
Since this is not being released for a few weeks and I’m doing a full review closer to the release date, I’m not going to say much about this book yet. All I’m going to say is that I thought it was fantastic and I definitely recommend checking this series.

 

I had a pretty great reading month in December and I just about managed to complete my Goodreads reading goal of 100 books. In terms of my January TBR I’m going to keep it simple and just read what I want to at the time, although I do plan to read Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. That’s it for my 2017 wrap ups – hopefully I’ll have another great reading year in 2018. What was your favourite book in December? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

November Wrap Up & December TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s time for another monthly wrap up. I had a pretty good reading month in terms of quantity and quality – I read eight books. I’m glad to be back in a reading mood again. Let’s get started.

 

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Forest of a Thousand Lanterns / Julie C. Dao / ★★
This book just didn’t work for me. I’m always up for trying East Asian inspired fantasy books but unfortunately I didn’t like this one. The main issue I had was the main character, Xifeng. I found her to be quite inconsistent at times and kind of frustrating. I know that you’re not really supposed to like her anyway but I just really wasn’t a fan and the girl on girl hate is a pet peeve of mine. The story was alright, although it seemed a little to neat and easy for the main character to get what she wants. The writing is good but it doesn’t really make up for the fact that I didn’t find the story very compelling. Overall this was a disappointment for me. It reinforces the fact that I’m not the biggest fan of YA fantasy at the moment.

 

Age of Assassin / R. J. Barker / ★★★
While I did enjoy this one, I didn’t love it. Probably somewhere between a 2.5 and 3 star rating. I thought the writing was good and it flowed nicely, but I found the plot to be a little lacking. To me it didn’t fully translate into a compelling story and there were a few times it dragged a little bit. It was still good for the most part. The characters are good, if a little lacking in depth and development. I don’t really know what else to say other than this one didn’t fully work for me. I probably won’t be continuing on with this series.

 

The Power / Naomi Alderman / ★★★
This one is quite a tricky one to rate. I think the concept of the book is great but it never translated into a compelling story to me. I can’t quite put my finger on why that is but that’s what I thought once I’d finished. The writing is good and this book is definitely full of interesting ideas, but there were times that I felt it was a little underdeveloped in some ways. I have mixed feelings on this book and I don’t really know what else to say. I would still recommend reading this but I definitely didn’t love it as much as I thought I would.

 

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The Book of Atrix Wolfe / Patricia A. McKillip / ★★★
I’ve been meaning to read more from this author since reading and loving Forgotten Beasts of Eld, so I decided to pick this one up on a bit of a whim. Her writing is great; I find it so easy to become immersed in her worlds and stories. This book was not an exception, although I didn’t love the plot as much as the previous book I’ve read by her. That’s not to say that the plot of this book wasn’t good though – I did still enjoy it. Overall I thought this was a great book and I’m definitely interested in reading more from this author.

 

The Black Tides of Heaven  and The Red Threads of Fortune / JY Yang / ★★★
I have a full review of this, so I’m not going to go into too much detail. I thought that both of these novellas were great, although lacking a little bit in the world building. The writing is good, the characters are well written and the world is an interesting one. If you’re a fan of fantasy then I would recommend checking these out if you’re interested by them.

 

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To Capture What We Cannot Keep / Beatrice Colin / ★★★.5
This is definitely quite a romance heavy historical fiction but I actually quite enjoyed it. The main thing I enjoyed about this book is that it is set during the construction of the Eiffel Tower – I think this is a great setting. Although it is quite romance heavy, I thought it was done well and it was an enjoyable story to read. I found this to be a quick and easy read, although it is quite a slow burner. If you’re looking for some new historical fiction to try out then I’d recommend checking this out.

 

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The Big Four / Agatha Christie / ★★★.5
It’s kind of funny that this is my fourth Christie book I’ve read considering the title. Anyway this was another great Poirot story with a compelling mystery. I’ve not been reading them in any kind of order but I haven’t been having any trouble reading them like that. Each has a separate mystery. I really enjoyed the story of this one and I find these Poirot mysteries to be so enjoyable to read. I don’t really have anything else to say about these – I’ve enjoyed all the Poirot books I’ve read so far.

 

The Book of Dust / Philip Pullman / ★★★★
This was probably my most anticipated book of this year and it did not disappoint. I was both nervous and excited about the possibility of this book, but it was great to be back in this world. It is quite a slow burning story, however I was never bored or felt that it dragged in any way. Basically I loved it and I’m very excited for the next book in this trilogy.

 

In terms of my December TBR I’m going to keep to simple and not pick a load of books to read as I haven’t really been sticking my TBRs recently. I would love to get to The Makioka Sister by Jun’ichirō Tanizaki – I said I’d pick it up in November but that didn’t happen. Other than that I’m just going to read what I want at the time. What books do you want to get to by the end of the year? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

October Wrap Up and November TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s time to talk about all the books I read in October… When I say all, I actually only mean 3 books. I had a bit of a slow reading month but I’m pretty pleased that I managed to read some books.

 

The Loving Cup / Winston Graham / ★★★
This was another good book in this series, but it did fall a little flat for me. Maybe because it’s been a while since I read the last book, so it took me a little while to work what was going on again. It was still good though and I will definitely be continuing on with this series.

 

1984 / George Orwell / ★★★.5
I think this is quite a hard one to rate. I thought that the writing was great and the flow of it made it quite easy to become absorbed. The world building was fantastic; you really feel the oppressive nature of this world. It is also definitely a thought provoking book, although perhaps a little dated now. It did drag a little bit at times but it didn’t really affect my reading experience.  I’ve been meaning to read this for ages now, so I’m glad that I’ve finally gotten around to reading it. Overall I thought this was a great book and I would recommend reading it.

 

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Time of Dread / John Gwynne / ★★★.5
*I received a digital copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
I’ve been aware of this author’s other series for a while, so when I saw he was coming out with a new series I thought I’d give it a go. I thought this was a great introduction to this trilogy, although it did take me a little while to get into (mainly due to my reading slump). I think one of the main strengths of this book were the range of characters; all of which were well written and engaging. This is a book with multiple perspectives, so if that’s not your thing than it’s probably something to be aware of going in, but I thought it was done well. Each perspective was distinctive and compelling. Overall I thought this was great. I will have a full review up closer to the release date (January 11th).

 

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Shadowblack / Sebastien de Castell / ★★★★
*I received a digital copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
I thought this was a great continuation of this series. I find this series is so enjoyable and fun to read. Although it did take me a little while to get into (due to the reading slump), I thought the plot was compelling and it was great to be back with these characters. I especially enjoy the character of Reichis. If you’re looking for a new entertaining fantasy series to read, I definitely recommend checking these books out. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

 

Mistress of the Empire / Raymond E. Feist and Janny Wurts / ★★★★
This was a fantastic ending to this trilogy. I was in a bit of a reading slump when I started reading this but after around 100 pages I was hooked. It was so good to be back with these characters and in this world. I think Mara is such a great female protagonist and is one of my favourite things about this trilogy. I also really enjoyed the scope of it – throughout the trilogy we see years of the characters lives and so we really see them grow. The writing is good, the plot is compelling and the characters are so well written. Overall I think this was a fantastic trilogy and I highly recommend checking it out.
I am currently reading The Book of Dust by Philip Pullman, so I will definitely be finishing that soon. In November I would also love to read Monstress: Vol 1 by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda. Other books I want to get to include The Power by Naomi Alderman, Good People by Hannah Kent and The Makioka Sisters by Jun’ichirō Tanizaki. I think I’m coming out of my reading slump so I hope to read more next month. What was your favourite book you read this month? Mine was definitely Mistress of the Empire. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa