After the stress of Camp NaNoWriMo last month I was really looking forward to plenty of guilt free reading, and as it stands I didn’t do too badly…
The Foxhole Court (All For the Game #1) by Nora Skavic
This is a YA contemporary that I bought years ago, because I kept seeing it on Tumblr, and this first book was, and still is, free on Kindle. I finally picked it up purely because it’s one of the shortest books I own, but now that I’ve read it, I can’t believe I left it so long. The Foxhole Court revolves around the fictitious sport of Exy, where Neil is invited to join the Palmetto State Foxes, a team made up of waifs and strays who have been given a second, third or fourth chance. Yes, this does read slightly like fanfic, but thats not necessarily a bad thing, go into it with an open mind, and have fun! I have a full spoiler free review up for you to check out.
The Murder on the Links (Hecule Poirot #2) by Agatha Christie
It’s been a hot minute since I last read a Poirot book, and I remember them taking me a while to read, so I was nervous about picking this up for a read-a-thon. This isn’t one of the Poirot stories that I was familiar with and that also dissuaded me from reading for a while. The premise goes as such, Poirot and Hastings go to the aid of a gentleman upon receiving a letter asking for assistance, only to find him stabbed in the back upon arrival. I was so wrong, because it kept me interested, it kept me engaged, and most importantly in a detective novel, it kept me guessing till the very end.
Batman: Under the Red Hood by Judd Winick, Doug Mahnke, Shane Davis, Eric Battle, Paul Lee, and more.
I picked this up from the library on a whim, never anticipating just how much I would fall in love with this story. Under the Red Hood collects a storyline from the Batman comics, where the identity of the mysterious criminal, Red Hood, is revealed. Even though I was well versed enough in Batman to know who this was, the way the reveal is done, and all the ramifications and implications of this was done so well, I fell in love. The story carries an emotional weight that is really hard to do in a comic book, especially one with such a closed of character, as Batman. I am writing spoiler free review at the moment, so look out for that!
Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero
If you were a fan of Scooby Doo, which I definitely was, then you should recognised the allusion in the title. That’s right, this is a Scooby Doo book. Sort of. twenty years after supposedly solving the case of the Sleepy Lake Monster, the gang get back together to tie up some loose ends. This was a fantastic adventure novel, with layers of intricate mystery that just keep you reading long after you should be asleep. It’s creepy enough to make me shiver, but is balances with comedy, some of which alludes to those Scooby Doo tropes that we all know and love. There was science, there was the supernatural, there were plot twists a plenty, and I loved every minute of it. I really want the American hardback ASAP!
Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman
You’re probably thinking, “Hasn’t Victoria already read this book?”, and you would be right, because this is the third time I’ve read it. What can I say? I just can’t get enough. Call Me By Your Name is a love story that tales place over the course of one summer, between seventeen year old Elio and twenty four year old Oliver, and how it affected the course of their lives. I adore Aciman’s lyrical writing, and the concise way he manages to deliver this narrative of longing, and wanting, and getting what you wish for, no matter how briefly. This book captures my heart every time I read it, and I can only hope to be able to write like Aciman one day.
Failing Up by Leslie Odom Jr, read by the author
I picked the audiobook up for this book the minute I realised that Leslie would be narrating it himself, and I was not disappointed. I have very high expectations and still Odom Jr manages to meet them, with his thoughtful, and accessible prose. I’m not, and have no intentions, at least at the moment, of going into the entertainment industry, and still I found things to take away from this book, which gives it an invaluable sort of universality. It’s short enough that even a fiction reader like myself can get on board, and enjoy this retrospective look at how this man ended up playing Aaron Burr, Sir, in the OBC of Hamilton. I would definitely listen to it again!
Suicide Squad, Vol 1: Kicked in the Teeth by Adam Glass, Federico Dallocchio, and Clayton Henry
This collects issues #1-7 of the 2011 Suicide Squad series, and follows the first outing of the criminals, come henchmen of the government, the Suicide Squad. I enjoyed myself reading this, and it was fun, but that was about it. If you liked the film, then you’ll probably like this too, but it’s not required reading, and I wouldn’t rush out to buy my own copy. The story itself had a lot of disposable characters, and the art style wasn’t one that I particularly liked. I’m going to have a full spoiler free review coming to you soon-ish, so keep an eye out for more of my thoughts.
False Papers by Andre Aciman
I read this collection of essays for my Aciman-August challenge, wherein I wanted to read multiple books by this author, after falling head over heels for Call me By Your Name. In constrats to that book this is a collection of around fourteen essays, their themes ranging from exile, to home, to time, and all in all I did enjoy this book. There were times when it got a little too high brow for me and I got a little lost, but there were also times when an essay really touched me, in a way I don’t usually associate with non-fiction. Aciman’s writing style came through beautifully, and I can see myself returning to some of my favourites.
Out of Egypt by Andre Aciman
Yes, this is the second non-fiction book in a row. Who am I? This is a memoir of Andre Aciman’s early childhood which was spent in the city of Alexandria, in Egypt. For the most part this was a pretty good read, and that was helped by the fact that it reads very much like a fiction novel. While this helped me in some ways, it did hinder my enjoyment in others, in meant that as I was reading I was expecting to see typical novel expectations. As a narrator it felt as though Aciman had no agency, but rather just an observational role in his own life, also, it’s hard to follow if you don’t know what happened in Egypt during this period.
Wonder Woman; Warbringer (DC Icons #1) by Leigh Bardugo
At long last I have finally read a DC Icons book, and it has been a long time coming. Warbringer follows Diana, who rescues a girl from a sinking ship of the coast of Themyscyria only to find that she may bring doom to the world. It was fun and lighthearted, and accessible, even if you’re not a comic book fan, however it was almost too light. I never truly cared about the characters, not to the extent that I should have, and Bardugo’s voice didn’t come through as strongly as I would have liked. But there were a lot of fun moments, and I did enjoy reading it, and it works as a great intro to Wonder Woman.
Harvard Square by Andre Aciman
I hate to say it, but this was a real disappointment for me. It’s a short book, only 300 ages, and follows the friendship between a Jewish grad student and a Arabian cab driver, which sounded great. However the protagonist, the grad student, was so unbearably pretentious I couldn’t stand most of the things he said or thought, as the book is from his perspective. Even Kalaj, the cab driver, had a lot of annoying attributes, that explained why his “friend” treated his so poorly. I did really like the prologue and the epilogue, which is from the MC’s perspective as he shows his son around, but that was about it.
My favourite book this month was Under the Red Hood, I don’t want to say that it blew my mind, but it was absolutely fantastic, and a great reminder of why I read graphic novels.
What about you; What did you read this month? Did we read any of the same books? What’s your favourite non-fiction book?
Thanks for reading