Hi there friends! How are you all? What have you been reading?
This week has been chaos personified, and I am not even exaggerating! I need 2022 to chill the fuck out, thank you.
Today’s post is one of my favourite posts to write and also to read! It’s my monthly wrap up for march and this month has been a really interesting reading month! In total I read 11 books and I had four five (5) star reads, and I picked up a few books that have been languishing on my physical tbr for a couple of years. So I honestly feel slightly proud of myself! I’m trying to focus more on actually reading books that are on my physical tbr, so I haven’t picked up any ebooks this month as a result.
In terms of genres, I mostly read fantasy and historical fiction books according to Storygraph. The fantasy isn’t a suprise, but the fact that I’ve read 5 historical fiction novels this month, was actually a surprise. I thought that I was slowly weaning off historical fiction but that’s actually a huge lie that I was telling myself.
Only three books were purchased this year, where two were preorders and the other was a spontaneous purchase at a bookstore earlier this year. Here’s a nifty pie chart showing whether the books were from my backlist, or purchased this year:
In total, I also read 4038 pages – which is around about the average for me in terms of my monthly page count. I’m trying to aim to read 55000 pages this year, so I’ll keep you updated about that!
Like usual, this wrap up won’t be providing summaries or synopses for each book I have read, I’ll only be talking about my purely subjective thoughts and feelings! They will in no way be in detail so if you want me to talk about a specific book more, let me know and I can dedicate a post to it!
Shall we begin?
In order of my lowest rated to my highest rated!
As I’ve already dedicated an entire post to it, I’ll quickly mention that I reread 𝑻𝒉𝒆𝒔𝒆 𝑽𝒊𝒐𝒍𝒆𝒏𝒕 𝑫𝒆𝒍𝒊𝒈𝒉𝒕𝒔 𝒃𝒚 𝑪𝒉𝒍𝒐𝒆 𝑮𝒐𝒏𝒈 in march and it went from a 4.5 star rating to a solid 3 star. If you want to read more about my thoughts, here’s my post where I talk about it and it’s sequel!
The only other book I have three stars to was, unsurprisingly, another 𝑪𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒍𝒆𝒔 𝑫𝒊𝒄𝒌𝒆𝒏𝒔 novel. I have not been having much luck with 𝑫𝒊𝒄𝒌𝒆𝒏𝒔 in the past year or so. I read 𝑫𝒂𝒗𝒊𝒅 𝑪𝒐𝒑𝒑𝒆𝒓𝒇𝒊𝒆𝒍𝒅 in 2020 and I absolutely loved it and is one of my favourite classics I have read (in my top 15 at least). But since then, I have read 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑷𝒊𝒄𝒌𝒘𝒊𝒄𝒌 𝑷𝒂𝒑𝒆𝒓𝒔, 𝑶𝒍𝒊𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝑻𝒘𝒊𝒔𝒕, 𝑵𝒊𝒄𝒉𝒐𝒍𝒂𝒔 𝑵𝒊𝒄𝒌𝒆𝒍𝒃𝒚 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝑨 𝑪𝒉𝒓𝒊𝒔𝒕𝒎𝒂𝒔 𝑪𝒂𝒓𝒐𝒍 and they all have been just good. Not amazing. Just good. Which has been such a huge surprise to me considering my experience reading David Copperfield! This month I read 𝑩𝒂𝒓𝒏𝒂𝒃𝒚 𝑹𝒖𝒅𝒈𝒆 and honeslty, it was fine. It was a solid read but didn’t blow me away. I do have to say though that on the surface, this book had everything that I could ever want in a classic and the commentary and exploration on religion and the relationship between Church and State was so up my alley but ultimately – it was just fine.
I think the next 𝑪𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒍𝒆𝒔 𝑫𝒊𝒄𝒌𝒆𝒏𝒔 book I’m going to be reading is 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑶𝒍𝒅 𝑪𝒖𝒓𝒊𝒐𝒔𝒊𝒕𝒚 𝑺𝒉𝒐𝒑! What’s your favourite Dickens? Do you have one?
𝚝𝚑𝚛𝚎𝚎 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚊 𝚑𝚊𝚕𝚏 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚛𝚜
The only book I have this rating was 𝑬𝒂𝒓𝒕𝒉𝒍𝒊𝒏𝒈𝒔 𝒃𝒚 𝑺𝒂𝒚𝒂𝒌𝒂 𝑴𝒖𝒓𝒂𝒕𝒂. I read 𝑪𝒐𝒏𝒗𝒆𝒏𝒊𝒆𝒏𝒄𝒆 𝑺𝒕𝒐𝒓𝒆 𝑾𝒐𝒎𝒂𝒏 by the same author in 2020, I believe, and loved it. It was an incredibly powerful book and one that hits you most in the aftermath of reading. 𝑬𝒂𝒓𝒕𝒉𝒍𝒊𝒏𝒈𝒔 is a completely different tone. This is a book that I really truly do not know how to describe. The reading experience was positive, but don’t go into this book thinking it’s similar (content wise) to its predecessor. It’s not. However, the themes are.
Also, for some reason, Elif Bautman keeps blurbing Sayaka Murata as ‘hilarious’ (for this book and for 𝑪𝒐𝒏𝒗𝒆𝒏𝒊𝒆𝒏𝒄𝒆 𝑺𝒕𝒐𝒓𝒆 𝑾𝒐𝒎𝒂𝒏) and that is definitely not the case. Murata writes incredibly emotionally intense novels that explore a variety of themes, but mainly living within a stricly capalist society. Not hilarious.
I still don’t understand it fully – I’m not sure if it was all in the main character’s head or if it was real – but let’s just say it was incredibly unpredictable and wild. Trigger warnings for child abuse, pedophilia and cannibalism.
Yes, cannibalism. I mean it when I say that this book is wild.
My two four star reads are young adult fantasy. I actually read the most young adult fantasy in one month in march than I have in any other months of this year (and most likely this could be said for last year also). I finally read 𝑶𝒖𝒓 𝑽𝒊𝒐𝒍𝒆𝒏𝒕 𝑬𝒏𝒅𝒔 𝒃𝒚 𝑪𝒉𝒍𝒐𝒆 𝑮𝒐𝒏𝒈, the sequel and conclusion to the 𝐓𝐡𝐞𝐬𝐞 𝐕𝐢𝐨𝐥𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐃𝐞𝐥𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭𝐬 𝐝𝐮𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐲. I won’t say anything more about this book as I also wrote about it in my dedicated review to this duology here.
The other book was 𝑺𝒊𝒙 𝑪𝒓𝒊𝒎𝒔𝒐𝒏 𝑪𝒓𝒂𝒏𝒆𝒔 𝒃𝒚 𝑬𝒍𝒊𝒛𝒂𝒃𝒆𝒕𝒉 𝑳𝒊𝒎 and this was such a fun reading experience! I was hesitant to pick this book up purely because I haven’t loved a young adult fantasy since I read Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko whenever that came out – majority of the time, YA fantasy lets me down. But 𝑺𝒊𝒙 𝑪𝒓𝒊𝒎𝒔𝒐𝒏 𝑪𝒓𝒂𝒏𝒆𝒔 was a wonderful fantasy novel with strong characters and such an interesting world and magic system. I read this so quickly as it was so fast-paced and super engaging. If you want a fun time, I highly recommend it!
𝚏𝚘𝚞𝚛 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚊 𝚑𝚊𝚕𝚏 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚛𝚜
I read my first 𝑳𝒂𝒖𝒓𝒆𝒏 𝑮𝒓𝒐𝒇𝒇 book in march and I am so happy I did! I read 𝑴𝒂𝒕𝒓𝒊𝒙 and I loved it. How do I talk about this wonderfully strange novel?!
It was such a great reading experience and the story was incredibly compelling! Nuns! Sapphic (warrior) nuns! What a win. But it felt like more of a character study of Marie, a giantess and the half-sister of the King, who also was a descendent of the fairy queen. She is sent to be a prioress of an abbey, of which she has no choice, by the queen Eleanor. Marie essentially rebuilds the abbey into one of the best in the country. Cantering Marie and the women of the abbey, this book was just so beautiful and weird. This book reminded me in some ways of Nightbitch which may seem like a random comparison, but it feels right. The overall vibes feel similar between the two.
This was like my perfect book – in my first year of uni, I was obsessed with Benedictine nuns for some reason. Medieval history is my jam.
I also read 𝑨 𝑺𝒑𝒊𝒏𝒅𝒍𝒆 𝑺𝒑𝒍𝒊𝒏𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒆𝒅 𝒃𝒚 𝑨𝒍𝒊𝒙 𝑬. 𝑯𝒂𝒓𝒓𝒐𝒘 and wow. 𝑨𝒍𝒊𝒙 𝑬. 𝑯𝒂𝒓𝒓𝒐𝒘 is an auto-buy author and has been ever since I read 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑻𝒆𝒏 𝑻𝒉𝒐𝒖𝒔𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝑫𝒐𝒐𝒓𝒔 𝒐𝒇 𝑱𝒂𝒏𝒖𝒂𝒓𝒚 and then was cemented by 𝑶𝒏𝒄𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝑭𝒖𝒕𝒖𝒓𝒆 𝑾𝒊𝒕𝒄𝒉𝒆𝒔. I love her writing and her stories. With 𝑨 𝑺𝒑𝒊𝒏𝒅𝒍𝒆 𝑺𝒑𝒍𝒊𝒏𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒆𝒅, I was expecting to have a fun little time as it is only a novella and an incredibly short one at that. In the words of the author herself, is the ‘spider-verse with sleeping beauties’ and it was *chefs kiss*. It was fun and wonderfully magical – I love portal fantasy and I loved the main character Zinnia. This novella was a tiny novella sized bite of perfection.
I think it’s excellent that I have the most five star reads for march! Four truly excellent and brilliant books.
Let’s start with the only non-fiction book I read in march. And what a book. I finally read 𝑳𝒊𝒆𝒔, 𝑫𝒂𝒎𝒏𝒆𝒅 𝑳𝒊𝒆𝒔 𝒃𝒚 𝑪𝒍𝒂𝒊𝒓𝒆 𝑮. 𝑪𝒐𝒍𝒆𝒎𝒂𝒏 and this is one of the most wonderful non-fiction book regarding colonisation and the impact of inter-generational trauma on First Nation Australians. This was an actually perfect collection of essays, each exploring the direct impact invasion and trauma had on Coleman and her family and her community. I implore you to read it. It is one of the best non-fiction books I have ever read.
Another novella I read in march was book two in the 𝐖𝐚𝐲𝐰𝐚𝐫𝐝 𝐂𝐡𝐢𝐥𝐝𝐫𝐞𝐧 𝐬𝐞𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐬 by 𝑺𝒆𝒂𝒏𝒂𝒏 𝑴𝒄𝑮𝒖𝒊𝒓𝒆 and that was 𝑫𝒐𝒘𝒏 𝑨𝒎𝒐𝒏𝒈 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑺𝒕𝒊𝒄𝒌𝒔 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝑩𝒐𝒏𝒆𝒔. This was absolutely fantastic! I have realised that I love portal fantasy and this book was actually wonderful. This novella takes place technically before the first novella in this series, 𝑬𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒚 𝑯𝒆𝒂𝒓𝒕 𝒂 𝑫𝒐𝒐𝒓𝒘𝒂𝒚, and it focused on Jack and Jill – the twins whose portal world is absolutely insane and super cool. Jack and Jill are not typical heroines at all and I loved Jack so much. She is such a complex and fascinating character!!
The biggest surprise of march was 𝑨 𝑮𝒆𝒏𝒕𝒍𝒆𝒎𝒂𝒏 𝒊𝒏 𝑴𝒐𝒔𝒄𝒐𝒘 𝒃𝒚 𝑨𝒎𝒐𝒓 𝑻𝒐𝒘𝒍𝒆𝒔. How do I describe this book!? I should say that if you want action and plot and a fast moving story, this is not the book for you. This was a lovely meandering novel, focusing on our main character Count Alexander Rostov as he is essentially placed under house arrest at his place of residence, which is the Metropol Hotel in Moscow in the aftermath of the Bolsheviks taking over. Alexander is one of the most charming, wonderful and genuine characters I’ve read. You can’t help but fall in love with him. He tries so hard to still be in love with his life regardless of the fact that he literally cannot leave the Hotel’s premises. This is primarily a story about him and his life and how he learns to exist in this new way, in a ‘new’ kind of Russia.
And what might be my favourite of the month, 𝑫𝒆𝒍𝒊𝒍𝒂𝒉 𝑮𝒓𝒆𝒆𝒏 𝑫𝒐𝒆𝒔𝒏’𝒕 𝑪𝒂𝒓𝒆 𝒃𝒚 𝑨𝒔𝒉𝒍𝒆𝒚 𝑯𝒆𝒓𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒈-𝑩𝒍𝒂𝒌𝒆. This book. This goDDAMN BOOK. I loved it with my entire heart. I think on Twitter I said that this book was what I’ve been wanting for so long !!! And it did not disappoint! It actually blew me away ✨ Delilah Green is a woman who has decided not to care. She only has one night stands or sexual partners who know that a relationship is off the table. But then she meets Claire, one of her step-sister’s best friends, and things change!!! What I loved most about this book other than the adorable romance, was the sibling relationship between Delilah and Astrid. The tension between the siblings and the emotional aspect of just added so much more depth to this story and it enabled us to grow closer to Delilah and to Astrid, as a result. One of my favourite romance novels ever, and the best sapphic romance I’ve read!!!!!!!!
And that’s it for today, friends!
Thank you so much for reading! And I also just want to say a huge thank you for all of your support! Writing these little blog posts are so much fun and allows me to set aside time to talk about one of my favourite things to talk about…books!
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and that you are reading some incredible books!
Until next time, happy reading.
All the love,