Hey guys! I actually have a pretty long wrap up post for today! After only reading 2 books in January and 4 books in February, I think I’m finally clawing my way back as I read 11 books in March! How crazy is that!? I’ve never read that many books in a month before! Closest I’ve come to that is 9 which happened last year but I’ve forgot what month it was. I’m so pleased with myself for managing to go jump from 4 to 11 and I’m nearly halfway through my reading challenge as well now! In terms of what I read, that was really successful as well because I enjoyed a lot of what I read. Here’s what I read:
Legendary by Stephanie Garber: Feels like I read this such a long time ago now, wow! I was completely mesmerised by Stephanie’s beautiful writing and how she seemed to make everything come to life. It was just as magical and otherworldly as Caraval and a great sequel. I loved Scarlett so much and was hesitant to see what her sister would be like but Tella is so much funnier and bolder than her sister. Tella just seemed to breathe so much life into the story and it was so easy to get completely sucked in. The world building was just as dazzling the second time around and I’m so excited for Finale now!
On My Life by Angela Clarke: I had no idea what to expect going into this as Angela Clarke is a new author for me. I’ve never read any of her books before but now I want to. My curiosity is piqued after reading this chilling story. The main character is framed for the murder of her stepdaughter and potential murder of her fiancé. She is thrown in prison and once inside, discovers she is pregnant. We get to experience the distressing reality of prison and it was terrifying to say the least. The author did such a fantastic job with her descriptions and I felt so many emotions reading this. Just picturing the prison cells left me feeling depressed and the way the guards treated the prisoners was disturbing. Then the main character getting beaten up by other prison mates was shocking. I had no idea how she would prove she was innocent and it had me on the edge of my seat waiting to see how it all played out. The big reveal at the end was shocking and I really didn’t see it coming. It was like the ultimate betrayal and I really felt for the main character. It’s such a terrifying ordeal to go through that and the author really stepped it up a notch by making the main character pregnant. I’ll definitely be looking out for her other books!
Ruin Beach by Kate Rhodes: I’ve been eagerly awaiting the release of this book and as soon as publication day hit I rushed out to buy it. I absolutely love Kate’s writing and she provides such vivid descriptions of the landscape. It was easy to be swept away by the horror of such a brutal murder and how much the small community was rocked by it. Knowing a killer is amongst them but not knowing who it is sounds terrifying and would definitely put me on edge. I loved the return of Ben Kitto and I clung to him as much as I did in Hell Bay. He’s such a fascinating character and I love his mindset. I didn’t have a clue who the murderer was and was shocked when it was revealed at the end. I hope Kate writes a third book in this series!
Shadow and Bone trilogy by Leigh Bardugo: I’m not going to talk about this series too much because I already posted a lengthy review for it last week. I’m really glad I finally read this trilogy and so many things make sense now for the Grishaverse. I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would and I flew through each book. While some parts fell flat for me, there was a lot of fantastic elements that I enjoyed. I really loved the Darkling, for one. He was by far the most interesting character and he definitely lived up to my expectations. I love when a story has a good villain and he was perfect. One thing I wished was better is the world building as I think it would have made the series much stronger. I’ve had a look at the fictional map and I’m still baffled by it all!
Superman: Dawnbreaker by Matt de la Pena: This was one of my disappointing reads which is a shame because it’s the last book in the DC Icons series. Sad to end this series on a bad note but I knew going into this that I probably wouldn’t like it. I don’t like perfect superheroes; I much prefer them to have flaws. Superman’s strength and speed etc meant that whatever fight he encountered, he would have no problem ending up on top. How can I get excited about anything in this book when I know Superman will be fine? His character just completely kills it. It wasn’t just Superman that made me hate this book. I didn’t think the writing was that great either which, again, is a shame because Matt is a new author for me and it would have been nice to be interested in his other books. All the way through it was like “Clark did this. Clark did that.” and it got very irritating very fast. I felt very disconnected from the characters and felt absolutely nothing for them the whole way through. What a disappointing way to end this series but at least I was expecting it!
The Flower Girls by Angela Clark-Platts: I’m not sure what I was expecting from this book but I was taken aback with how the author decided to tell the story of The Flower Girls. I guess I was expecting it to be told in a different way and it took me a bit to get into the swing of the plot but once I got settled I was completely swept away by the story. The Flower Girls is such a chilling name and you can just imagine a story like this storming the media and being plastered all over newspaper headlines. It sounds so innocent and I’m kind of impressed with the author for picking the name out. The plot revolves around two sisters aged 10 and 6 who abduct and murder a 2 year old. The older sister is sent to prison for life but the youngest is given a new identity. It’s an extremely disturbing and sensitive story and it makes reference to some famous real life crimes of a similar nature. It has lots of twists but unfortunately I guessed the ending pretty early on so that was a bit disappointing. Nonetheless I was impressed with the author for tackling such a sensitive topic and it was a thought-provoking read.
The Near Witch by V.E. Schwab: This is definitely not my favourite book Schwab has written. It was interesting for sure but probably not something I’d reach for again. It sounds spooky and otherworldly but I quickly found myself growing tired of the plot and the characters. I couldn’t connect with them at all and I was a bit thrown by it being in first person because I’m so used to Schwab writing in third person. I found it to be repetitious as every night a child went missing and all the characters were left scratching their heads. The main character snuck out almost every night and repeatedly went against the town’s wishes – it just all ended up rolling into one. By the time the ending rolled around I found myself not caring in the slightest what happened. I probably won’t read this again in all honestly. I can say that I think Schwab is a much better writer now and it was interesting to see how much her writing has changed and evolved over the years.
Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh: This was so close to being a five star read but unfortunately I got a little bogged down with all the court terminology. I have a very basic understanding of courtrooms and trials but because the author went into so much detail, I found myself getting really confused. He did explain some things but I would have preferred it if he dumbed it down. After finishing it though I found out it’s actually part of a series so maybe he explains it all better in the earlier books? I’ll have to find out because I definitely want to read more of his books and see more of the main character, Eddie Flynn! I really enjoyed this book despite getting confused at the start. Once the trial properly started, it felt like the whole book shifted and it became so intense. The author crafted an incredibly twisted story with a smart and ruthless killer at the heart of it. It was such a gruesome and gripping story.
The Red Scrolls of Magic by Cassandra Clare: I’m sure so many people are rolling their eyes at another Shadowhunter series but trust me, this book was magnificent and everything I wanted. I love Alec and Magnus so much and to finally have a book solely about just the two of them and their relationship… I couldn’t handle it. It was so perfect and I will never stop thanking Cassie for this latest addition to the Shadowhunter world. I devoured it in less than 24hrs and now I’m mad at myself because who knows how long we will have to wait for book two. There’s so many little surprises throughout from the other series and I was so pleased with myself for recognising them. But most of the time I was smiling like an idiot at how precious Alec and Magnus are. Alec especially. I couldn’t really appreciate Alec in TMI but now I love him so much. I loved seeing them both find happiness after everything they’ve been through. Also I’m still drooling over the cover because it looks way better in real life and I don’t think any photo can capture how mesmerising it is. I squealed when I saw it!
This is such a long post, wow! I’m really happy with what I’ve read this month and I’ve read a decent amount of YA fantasy and crime thrillers. Out of 11, there was only two books I was disappointed with and that’s pretty impressive! What books did you read this month? Feel free to leave a comment below! I hope you enjoyed this post and thank you so much for reading!