Ah October. Barely started, already over. It went in a flash. Mostly because I spent two weeks in Europe. Germany and the UK. Visiting family, attending a wedding and seeing friends. I also made the most of my time in London to shoot a lot of content and kick off my autumn feed.
First, because New York does not have floral displays. Second, because a photographer in NYC cost at least $250 per hour while a photographer in London will charge you the same for half a day. Right now I am super broke, so the choice was an easy one!
But back to books! I read five books in October. Not my best month, not my worst. It is definitely better than September, which was such a disappointing reading month. But let’s get cracking so that you know what I mean!
1. Days Of Blood And Starlight, Laini Tailor
|Author: Laini Taylor
Published: February 2014
Series: Daughter Of Smoke And Bone
Synopsis: Art student and monster’s apprentice Karou finally has the answers she has always sought. She knows who she is–and what she is. But with this knowledge comes another truth she would give anything to undo: She loved the enemy and he betrayed her, and a world suffered for it.
Karou and Akiva on opposing sides as an age-old war stirs back to life. While Karou and her allies build a monstrous army in a land of dust and starlight, Akiva wages a different sort of a battle: a battle for redemption. But can any hope be salvaged from the ashes of their broken dreams?
My review: I read this book at the beginning of October and I read it fairly quick. It was easy to read through. The writing is beautiful and the story packed with action and suspence.
I loved Akiva’s character development. Book one mostly focused on Karou finding out who she is. Here, Akiva questions his beliefs, his father’s actions, the angels’ mission and challenges the backwards views on Chimeras. It was really interesting to see Akiva convincing others around him to change as well. This book was unpredictable and full of suspence.
I loved the opposition Chimeras/Humans. Chimeras are very powerful, strong, though, built for battle, and have no time to worry about life. Yet, they are fascinated by humans and the art they produce. While Humans who are weaker, more sensitive and have “easy lives” are fascinated by the Chimeras. Which puts both on an equal level. They have different strengths. One isn’t better than the other, they are just different.
In conclusion, read the series, it’s amazing. So far! Now, onto book 3!
2. A Court Of Mist And Fury, Sarah J Maas
|Author: Sarah J Maas
Published: May 2016
Synopsis: Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court, but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.
Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms–and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future–and the future of a world cleaved in two.
My review: It’s not the first time I read this book. As a matter of fact, it is my favorite book in the trilogy. As I was traveling while reading, the story felt cut into pieces. Thus the read wasn’t as enjoyable to me as it was in the past. I still very much like the book though!
However, as I re-read, I picked up details that I didn’t see before. When Feyre decides that Tamlin is the vilain in her story, she instantly forgets and forgives everything Rhysand did under the mountain in book one. It is something I am not comfortable with. He did some pretty horrible things, including drugging her. That she forgives, I understand. That she forgets, I don’t. You can’t forget something like that. And even though the process of forgiving takes time, I would still have liked to have more time dedicated to Rhysand making amend for what he did and mentioning how he does not expect to be forgiven for this as it is unforgivable.
Something else that I am growing a bit annoyed with, is the constant act of playing evil, cruel, cunning, dark High Lord. All of which is to gain respect from others, inspire fear in its own and other people, have his power unchallenged and rule secured. Why do men have to act tough to rule? Why is it the only way to be in power and earn people’s respect? Positions of authority seem to require of men to be dicks. Even women who lead tend to adopt masculine behavior to prove they deserve their position. How toxic.
It does raises an excellent question – and I don’t know if it was on purpose or just me interpreting – but it is indeed challenged in book three. The Night Court needs other courts’ help and having been dicks all this time, they are unlikely to get it. So, they want to show their actuel selves to get people’s trust but also prove that kindness is great when it comes to ruling. As Velaris is the best example of.
Anyway, I still love this book. However, having read it not so long ago, it was probably too fresh in my mind. And being distracted while reading didn’t make the experience amazing. Still, I will always recommend this book!
3. Scarlet, Marissa Meyer
|Author: Marissa Meyer
Published: February 2013
Genre: YA Sci-Fi
Series: The Lunar Chronicles
Synopsis: Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison–even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.
Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.
My review: I read Cinder last month and I loved it. I didn’t expect to, so it was a great surprise! It also got me out of a reading slump! Thus, you can get how excited I was to read Scarlet.
I found the first half of the book very slow. Yes, the book introduces three new characters and establishes a context for each. But it did feel slow and long. I found Wolf as a character very cliché: your usual broody secretive bad boy. Which made his character quite predictable.
However, the second half of the book was much better. The plot fastened, thickened. Angst and expectations built up. All the characters were about to meet up and mysteries were about to be solved. I liked this second half much more and I can’t wait to read book three.
I was a bit disappointed in Emperor Kai’s character as I found him powerless, irrelevant and insignificant to the plot. It is probably to keep the emphasis on Scarlet and Cinder, but his part did not feel realistic. If Levana wants to invade the whole of earth, how it is that no leader but Kai is standing up to her? Not very well I might add. Other leaders have all interest in siding with Kai to challenge Levana’s attempt to invade earth. But other than that, still very excited to read book three!
4. The Wicked Deep, Shea Ernshaw
|Author: Shea Ernshaw
Published: March 2016
Synopsis: Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow… Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town. Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.
Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives; unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into. Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople turn against one another. Penny and Bo suspect each other of hiding secrets. And death comes swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.
But only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo, or save herself.
My review: I didn’t have massive expectations about this book. Yet, since it was so hyped up, I still wanted it to be good. Unfortunately, I didn’t find that it was.
The plot as a whole was very predictable. Half-way through the book, I knew how everything would end. I knew who was whom, possessing whom, killing whom. I did find the female characters rather cliché. We have the usual “outcast” who isn’t the prettiest, most charming, hottest, etc but who still gets the guy. She does not really have friends but for another outcast, a girl who is a bit of a nerd.
Another thing that annoyed me is the depiction of female relationships. Where they can only be based on jealousy, envy, hatred, competition, etc. Back in the Swan Sisters days, women jealous of their beauty, attractiveness, capacity to seduce men, made sure they’d be sentenced as witches. At present day in the book, we can still find those ruining girls relationships.
I could not care for any of the characters, nor could I invest myself in the story. To be honest, I don’t get the hype around this book and why everybody is so obsessed.
5. This Salvage Song, Victoria Schwab
|Author: Victoria Schwab
Published: March 2017
Genre: YA Dystopian
Series: Monsters of Verity
Synopsis: Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music.
When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.
My review: I think this book reconciled me with reading and YA! It was just so good! From page 1, you have action, mystery and loads of questions popping up in your mind that need answers. The author does not play around and get into it straight away.
I loved August. He was such a good characters. So contrasted and multidimensional, far away for your usual cliché male character. He had good emotional depth, an interesting background and no trace of toxic masculinity whatsoever.
I wasn’t the biggest fan of Kate to start with. She did start as your usual bad ass violent tough cliché girl but grew as something very different. Plus, her daddy issues were sort of annoying at some point. Such a good character development though. How she matures, distances herself from her father, sees him for what he actually is.
So, so good! And the whole story was so well-built and written. I can’t wait to read book 2!
So that’s it for all the books I read in October. Again, not that many but still a good number in my opinion. Also, much better books than the month before, so that’s a win!
What did you read back in October? Any books that you lived? Or recommendations for us? Was it a good month?
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