September Wrap Up

Hello everyone! My TBR this month didn’t go too well, as I hit a bit of a reading slump in the middle of the month, but I enjoyed what I did read and I got to read lots of old favourites, which was really fun, and that is, after all, the most important thing about reading: enjoying it!

Progress Made… My TBR

  • Initiate by Laura L. Fox
  • Fates Divided by Jules Barnard
  • The Duchess Quest by C. K. Brooke
  • The Ugly by Alexander Boldizar
  • Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi
  • A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
  • The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas
  • Defy by Raine Thomas
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling
  • Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas
  • Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore
  • Der Teezauberer von Ewald Arenz
  • Twelve Kings by Bradley Beaulieu
  • Paper Butterflies by Lisa Heathfield
  • The Fever Tree by Jennifer McVeigh
  • Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs
  • The Black Prism by Brent Weeks
  • The Girl Who Could Fly by Victoria Forester
  • The Memory Keeper’s Daughter by Kim Edwards
  • Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
  • The Philosopher Kings by Jo Walton
  • This Savage Song by V. E. Schwab
  • The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm (5 stories)
  • The Art of Dramatic Writing by Lajos Egri (1 chapter)
  • Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari & Eric Klinenberg (1 chapter)

  • Defy by Raine Thomas. This is my favourite book in the Estilorians series, as well as one of the best-written ones. Unlike the subsequent books in the Firstborn trilogy, the romantic angst in this first one isn’t so extreme, so I find it much more enjoyable to read, but it is also more slow-burning and realistic than that of the romance in the Daughters of Saraqael trilogy: a very nice balance. Four stars.
  • Shift by Raine Thomas. This was a reread for me and is the second book in the Firstborn trilogy. This and the next book in the Firstborn trilogy are my least favourite in the Estilorians series, mostly because we don’t get to see the romantic partners together as much and that the things that happen make me sad. That being said, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.  3 stars.
  • Elder by Raine Thomas. This is the third and final book in the Firstborn Trilogy and the 6th book in the Estilorians series and was a reread for me. A very satisfactory and heart-warming ending, but I do so which we got to experience more of the relationships. I enjoyed that Raine Thomas took more time in building the relationships of all of the characters in this trilogy than she did in the first half of the series (The Daughters of Saraqael trilogy). 3 stars.
  • The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas. I really love how all five of the short stories combine together to tell another larger one. I would have liked to see more of Sam and Celaena’s relationship, but you get more of it when reading the main series. I do think that reading the main series is necessary to really hurt when certain things happen. I have met so many characters that I hope come back in Empire of Storms: Ansel, Rolfe, Yrene, the Spider-silk vendor: all of these people with unfinished stories. This was a reread for me, but I had forgotten the majority of what had happened! In fact, what I did know, I mostly knew from hints in the main series it has been so long since I read this book! 4.5 stars.
  • Fates Divided by Jules Barnard. I published a full review for this book on the 26th of September here which I recommend checking out for my full thoughts. I really enjoyed the book but there were a few issues. 3.5 stars.
  • The Duchess Quest. I will be publishing a full review for this book on the 10th of October. As for now, all I can say is that whilst there were some things I did not love, for the post part I really, really enjoyed it. 4 stars.
  • The Girl Who Could Fly by Victoria Forester. I loose track of how many times I have reread this book. Every time it is a wonderful bundle of delight with evil people with honourable intentions, beautiful messages and wonderful friendships. I enjoyed my reread immensely and look forward to the eternal pleasure it will bring me when I read it yet again. 5 stars.
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling. As always, this was a fabulous reread and I hate Umbridge as much as ever. 5 stars.
  • Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi. I absolutely adored the whimsicalness and strangeness of this book. It was a perfect balance of actively making the choice to suspend your disbelief and wanting to believe everything you were reading. A perfect main course with a healthy side-dish of fantastic friendships on the side. 5 stars.
  • Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas. That was the shortest and most fabulous 689 pages in my life. The events of this story made me smile, laugh, wish I had a Fae for myself and tore my heart into tiny shreds and scattered them into the wind. I don’t know how I am going to survive waiting a year. The first thing I did after reading this book was text my friends and say ‘I will die before next September’. If you have read the book you will know why. 5 of the biggest, most overwhelming and enthusiastic stars ever. I also have a gush/hopes spoilery-review thing here.
  • Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge. 3.5 stars. I really loved Ignifex, but apart from that there was something missing from the magic and awe I need in a Beauty and the Beast retelling. Enjoyable, but didn’t do my favourite fairy tale justice.
  • Found by Alyssa Rose Ivy. This probably my favourite book in the series (this is the third) to reread! I just love how everything is resolved and as always the romance and dialogue is superb! 4 stars.
  • Focus by Alyssa Rose Ivy. Okay, well after rereading the third book in this series, I was still in the mood for something like it, so I decided to go back and reread the second one. So I did this kind of backwards, but oh well. I really like that Alyssa Rose Ivy makes the break up type scenario/getting back together scenario feel quite realistic and not rushed or dragged out to long. Also some really good advice to apply to real life, which never hurts!
  • The Afterlife of Alyx and Israel by Hanna Peach. I received a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  I read this as a stand-alone and I am not sure if I am going to go back and read the rest of the series as I loved this one so much, although I’m sure I will at some point when I want a nice romance and fantasy read. That being said, I really loved this book and any faults I had with it, I think, come from me reading it as a stand-alone rather than as the 6th book in a series. 4 stars. You can read my full review of this book here.
  • Awaken by Meg Cabot. I really love re-reading books in this series. It was what first introduced me to the Hades and Persephone myth and I really love the nostalgia and comfort it brings! 4 stars.
  • The Dark Wife by Sarah Diemer. After re-reading Awaken I was in the mood for more retellings of Hade and Persephone so I picked this book up. There was one typo of Hermes’ name, but apart from that… 3.5 stars. I liked some things about this, but I also didn’t find it to be original enough. It was a very literal retelling which isn’t my favourite, although it did bring to light more aspects of the myth and represented the characters of Hades and Persephone well enough and made the both strong. There should have been, I though, a bit more balance between the darkness of their natures and the metaphorical light, rather than an over-whelming amount of light, but generally speaking I enjoyed it!
  • Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore. This is the third book in the Graceling Realm companion series. It has been a while since I read the first two so I didn’t remember all of the finer details of the stories (although it did mostly come back to me). Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the magic and politics of this book. I did feel, however, that something was missing a bit. I am giving this book 4 stars, but really it is more like 3.75.
  • Rook by Sharon Cameron. This was my second time reading this book this year, so it doesn’t count towards my Goodreads goal, but it is one of my all-time favourite books and so I loved getting to reread it!
  • A Bond of Venom and Magic by Karen Tomlinson. 4.5 stars. The drama is real and although I find it annoying because I want the characters to be together, I will forgive it because I really, really liked this book. It was exciting and it was about fae with feral instincts, which is pretty much the best thing ever in my book. I will be reviewing this book on the 16th of October and I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
  • Oak and Mistletoe by J. Z. N. McCauley. 4 stars. I really enjoyed this book and I loved Bowen so very much! Full review to come in November.



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