November 2021 Wrap Up!

Hey guys! Today I’ll be sharing all the books I read in November. I read 12 books and quite a lot of them were five stars so lots of good books to shout about! Here’s what I read:

The Girl with the Green Eyes by J.M. Briscoe: First up was a sci-fi thriller and as I’ve said before, sci-fi books are a bit hit and miss for me but I really enjoyed this one. It’s the first in a trilogy and I’ll definitely be continuing the series. It explores science experiments and the favourable and unfavourable consequences. The main character, Bella, is born into a ‘designer baby’ eugenics programme and her parents paid for her to be beautiful; however, she’s also cruel and manipulative. Bella ends up being returned to the research centre where she ends up living permanently with the scientists who created the programme. We get to read about her time there while she’s growing up, and then an alternative timeline shows a much older Bella who’s on the run with her daughter. I thought it was a really compelling and thought-provoking story. I was eager to know why Bella was on the run and who from, and I was also questioning who was the real beast in this story: the scientists who create these programmes or the subjects who are born into them. It was a very interesting read and I’m looking forward to seeing what’s in store for these characters.

You’ll Be the Death of Me by Karen M. McManus: This is only the second book I’ve read by McManus but it definitely won’t be the last. I enjoy her writing so much and I’m sure she’ll become one of my favourite crime writers. While I didn’t find this one as good as One of Us Is Lying, it was still a quick and enjoyable read. It follows Ivy, Mateo and Cal who used to be friends before they drifted apart. They reconnect years later when they’re in high school and decide to skip school together. However, stumbling upon a crime scene and discovering a dead body isn’t quite what they had in mind. I really connected with the characters, especially Cal. Their high school troubles felt very relatable and I’m sure a lot of other younger readers will be able to connect with them as well. The plot was fast-paced, which I loved, and had a decent amount of twists that kept me turning the pages. I really need to read McManus’ other books!

ExtraOrdinary by V.E. Schwab: This was my first five star read and I can’t say I’m surprised. It’s set in the same world as her Villains series (one of my favourite series ever!), so I was expecting good things. I loved the story and the illustrations so much. It was much better than The Steel Prince series. I’ll definitely be reading the next graphic novel.

Our Trespasses by Michael Cordell: If anyone is looking for a creepy book to read for next Halloween, definitely check this one out. It follows Matthew Davis who has a connection with his twin brother, Jake. When Jake is brutally murdered, Matt feels his death and even suffers the agony of Jake’s afterlife. Desperate to break the connection, Matt travels to his hometown to find out his exactly his brother died but instead he finds himself battling a demon who wants to use their bond to take over the world. I normally find horror books don’t scare me but this one gave me the creeps. There’s very detailed scenes where Matt starts to hallucinate and he has to fight off the demon. The only thing I didn’t like about the story is that it dragged in the middle when Matt reunites with his childhood sweetheart. Apart from that, it was a brilliant story and I highly recommend it for horror fans.

Believe Me by Tahereh Mafi: I was so unbelievably excited when this dropped through my letterbox. I love the Shatter Me series so much and have really come to care for these characters. I really enjoyed Imagine Me but, like most people, I was disappointed with the lack of scenes between Juliette and Warner. I liked how this novella wrapped everything up and answered some of the questions I had at the end of Imagine Me. Gutted to be saying goodbye to these characters and probably wouldn’t say no to another book!

Lore Olympus: Volume One by Rachel Smythe: I know this is a very popular webtoon but this is the first time I read it. I loved the artwork and illustrations. The colours were beautiful and I enjoyed reading it. I did struggle to understand the story at times and remember who was who. I’ll definitely need to reread it before deciding whether to read Volume Two, as I’m unsure of whether I’ll continue it or not.

Lies My Memory Told Me by Sacha Wunsch: This had a very unique and fascinating concept but it unfortunately wasn’t for me. The story revolves around Enhanced Memory, technology that allows you to experience someone else’s memory. I was intrigued by the technology but I found it unrealistic at times because it was built on the idea that people wouldn’t want to create their own experiences anymore, instead choosing to experience it through a memory. While I could see it taking off for things like travel and skydiving, I struggled to accept that people wouldn’t want to go clubbing or ice skating. The writing also felt very repetitive and could have done with some more edits to cut out unnecessary words.

The Beast Hunters by Christer Lende: Another five star read for me! I loved this story so much and think it will appeal to lots of different age groups. The story follows seventeen-year-old Ara whose life is turned upside down when her parents are murdered by a monster. She is rescued by two beast hunters, Khendric and Topper, who invite her to join them on their journey. Together, the trio hunt down a beast that is terrorising a village, but it isn’t the only monster they’re up against. It was a fun, action-packed read and one you’d feel compelled to read in one sitting. I can’t wait for the second book!

The Quiet People by Paul Cleave: One of the best books I’ve read this year! It had so many shocking twists that I didn’t see coming and I was blown away by how creative the story was. I am in awe of this author and can’t wait to see what he writes next. This follows a married couple who are famous crime writers and have often said in interviews that they could commit the perfect murder: killing someone and get away with it. So when their son goes missing, the police and the public know where to point their fingers. Cameron finds himself fighting for his innocence and desperately searching for his son, while also trying to repair the damage done to his marriage. I honestly did not predict a single twist in this book and it’s so deserving of five stars.

The Dollmaker of Kalastra by Christer Lende: This is a short story and takes place before The Beast Hunters. It was another great read and I ended up reading it in one sitting. It had some creative monsters (not your typical vampire and werewolf) and I loved seeing Topper and Khendric chasing clues to hunt the beast down. Another very fun read this month!

The Last House on the Street by Diane Chamberlain: I think this is the most heartbreaking book I’ve read this year and one that will stick with me for a while. It has dual timelines: one in 2010 following Kayla who’s recently widowed and moving into the house they built together. But someone doesn’t want her there and tries to frighten her away. The other timeline is set in 1964 and follows Ellie, a young white student who becomes involved in the right for civil rights. Something tragic happens in Ellie’s life that affects the present day for Kayla and the story gradually builds up to that moment, where these two women’s lives are set to collide.

Wahala by Nikki May: I really wanted to love this but it fell a bit short for me. It follows Boo, Simi and Ronkie, three mixed-raced friends who are living in London. When a friend from the past, Isobel, enters their lives she’s determined to fix their futures. However, when cracks begin to appear in their friendships, it soon becomes clear that Isobel is actually wrecking their lives. I normally like slow burners but this was too slow for me and Ronke was the only likeable character. I think these characters ended up wrecking their own lives to be honest, without Isobel’s help. I’m gutted I didn’t like this as much as I thought I would.

That’s my November wrap up! I had a fantastic reading month and I’m looking forward to wrapping up the year next month. I hope you enjoyed this post and thank you so much for reading!

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