I feel like all I do in my intros is say how busy this month has been, but, yes April meant the deadline for my dissertation and the start of my exams. Of course I still powered through some books, and here is what I managed to read this month:
The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicles #1) by Patrick Rothfuss 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Annoyingly I finished this the day after my March Wrap-Up went up, so this is still technically a March book, even though it’s here in my April Wrap-Up. Anyway, I really enjoyed this book, and I went into this a bit sceptical after The Lies of Locke Lamora last year, but it really impressed me. Part of a trilogy this book chronicles the first part Kvothe’s life as he tells the story to a Chronicler who has come to his tavern. This is a fantasy book, in case you haven’t guessed, and Rothfuss did an excellent job with the world building. I that department it really reminded me of Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn trilogy. Also that characters were excellent, even the minor ones seemed to be fleshed out, reminding me a lot of A Song of Ice and Fire. Even though I am making a fair few comparisons to other high fantasy masterpieces The Name of the Wind definitely stands proud on its own two feet as an example of fantastic high fantasy, with Rothfuss’ spellbinding world of magic, monsters and myth.
De Profundis by Oscar Wilde 🌟🌟🌟🌟
De Profundis, a 50,000 word letter that Wilde wrote while in prison for homosexuality, was really great. I didn’t realise that the edition I have, the free kindle one because I’m a cheapskate, is not the full text but the edited version that was published at the beginning of the 20th century, but I still really enjoyed it. Wilde explores so many themes from art to the soul, and touches upon so many different sources. It was a little Bible-heavy but that was only a slight issue because my edition is not annotated so quite a few of these referenced went over my head. But on the whole there were so many observations that really resonated with me, and I would love to read a full, annotated edition in the future.
Inside the Magic: The Making of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Ian Nathan 🌟🌟🌟
I was pleasantly surprised by this non-fiction book about the making of the awesome film, and intriguing addition to the Harry Potter universe. I’m nor really a non-fiction person, and I’m not a huge fan of behind-the-scences kind of stuff but this book was super interesting. However I do think that it would have been even better if it hadn’t been spoiler free, because it could’ve gone into so much more depth. But I do understand why this would make it harder to market. Still, I did really enjoy this unique take on a film I adore.
A Court of Mist and Fury (ACoTaR #2) by Sarah J. Maas 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
This is the third time I’ve read this book, and looking back at the first words of my review were ‘I legit have no words right now‘. Let’s just say, not much has changed because I am still speechless. My love for this book is just… If you liked ACoTaR, even if you hated it, please just give this one a go because if perfection is to be found in book form then here it is. Sarah takes the myth of Hades and Persephone and twists it into her own beautiful little thing. Seriously this book has it all, darkness and light, laughter and heartbreak, the Night Court and the Spring Court. Full of magic, desperation, and love, which can be a poison just as much as a balm. At this rate Book 3 will probably kill me. R.I.P Victoria.
The Long Way to a Small, Angry, Planet by Becky Chambers 🌟🌟🌟🌟
As someone who very rarely reads sci-fi, even though i do enjoy it on the TV, this was a great novel for me. This is an adult sci-fi novel, focused on the crew of a tunnelling ship, The Wayfarer, whose job is to create wormholes for others to travel from one point to the other. Despite that I feel like the focus of this novel is on the inter-species crew’s journey from one job to another. It was definitely what you would call episodic, but once I can to that realisation, I did really enjoy it. Stay tuned for a full review, probably spoiler filled, coming soon, but if you’re a fan of Firefly or Star Trek (But especially Firefly) then this is the book for you.
The Julius House (Aurora Teagarden #4) by Charlaine Harris 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Ah, now this book reminded me why I love this series so much, especially after the ‘meh’ last book. In this episode Aurora finds herself the new owner of the Julius House, where a number of years ago the family who lived there disappeared without a trace, and were never seen again. I did actually see the TV adaptation before reading but I felt like the focus of this book was not necessarily the mystery, but Aurora’s marriage. Surprisingly I loved that Harris did that because it made the mystery solving portion flow much smoother. I also really like the introduction of Angel, a new character, and hope to see more of the Youngbloods.
Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices #1) by Cassie Clare, read by Morena Baccarin 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
I just cannot read this book without smiling (and squeezing, and sighing) and that’s probably because I am a Shadowhunter pro, so even though this is my personal favourite, I would not recommend it as your first shadowhunter books. Anyway, this follows Emma as she investigated the mysterious death of her parents a number of years ago. I’m not going to go on about it because I do have a spoiler free review if you want to know more about plot and characters (spoiler, I love them both), but I will say that Lady Midnight is probably the best first book of Cassie’s, and if the rest of the trilogy is this song, then it might just give The Infernal Devices a run for it’s money.
Star Wars; The Force Awakens by Alan Dean Foster 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Confession time: This is the first Star Wars film that I watched. Scandalous I know. But I absolutely adored every second of it, and the book is… maybe even better, or at the very least just as good. I always find it hard to rate books like this when I’ve already see the film, because, especially in this case, the special effects are just beautiful. I’m not going to summarise the plot, because frankly I don’t know where to begin, but I will say that it’s a very different to the other sci-fi book I read this month. TFA is incredibly action based with a plot that is constantly moving, but if you’ve seen the film, which I’m sure you have, you already know this. There are , however, some extra little character moment, and lines of dialogue that really fresh out the characters even more than the film does, which is why TFA eared that extra star.
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller 🌟🌟🌟
This historical-fiction novel set in classical Greece was a bit disappointing for me. I likes the concept, the exploration of a romantic relationship between Achilles and Patroclus alongside everything else that is, I guess, Achilles’ life story. Admittedly my prior knowledge was very lacking, not that you need any, since the book does do a pretty decent job in that department. However, for me there was a definite problem with a jumpy timeline, and a very slow beginning. I was also not the biggest fan of Patroclus, even though I was totally there for the ship. Ultimately it felt like this was the first novel of someone with a degree in classics and I was right. It’s not a bad book, by any means, but it just wasn’t for me.
And those were the books that I read in the month of April, clearly my intended TBR kind of went out of the window. My favourite, for the third time reading, is ACoMaF and probably will be for the rest of my mortal life. I’m also currently reading Hero of Ages, which I didn’t want to carry back on the train because it is huge, but hopefully I’ll finish it next month.
What did you read this month? Have you read any of these books, and if so, what did you think?
Thanks for reading!