March Reading Wrap-Up

Books Bought:

  • The Comet Seekers, Helen Sedgwick (ARC)
  • The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley, Hannah Tinti (ARC)
  • Everyone Brave is Forgiven, Chris Cleave
  • Avenue of Mysteries, John Irving
  • The End of Our Story, Meg Haston (ARC)
  • Shadow and Bone, Leigh Bardugo
  • Here We Are: Feminism for the Read World, Ed. Kelly Jensen
  • Shrill: Notes from a Loud Women, Lindy West (ARC)
  • An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take it Back, Elisabeth Rosenthal (ARC)
  • The Light Between Oceans, M. L. Steadman
  • The Rules Do Not Apply, Ariel Levy
  • The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World, Dalai Lama XIV, Desmond Tut
  • Gizelle’s Bucket List: My Life with a Very Large Dog, Lauren Fern Watt (ARC)

Books Read:

  • Ten Years in the Tub, Nick Hornby
  • Another Brooklyn, Jacqueline Woodson
  • Six of Crows, Leigh Bardugo
  • Toradora! Vol. 1, Yuyuko Takemiya
  • Gizelle’s Bucket List: My Life with a Very Large Dog, Lauren Fern Watt (ARC)
  • Hidden Figures, Margot Lee Shutterly (unfinished)
  • Brian’s Winter, Gary Paulsen (unfinished)
  • Here We Are: Feminism for the Real World, Ed. Kelly Jensen (unfinished)

I read a whopping five books this month! A much bigger improvement from my one and three books the months before. I can feel myself moving up in the world. (Just don’t ask me how I managed to start and finish four books before finishing the two I started reading in February. I don’t know.)

I credit the success of this month to a solo challenge I made up and attempted in the span of about three hours. The goal was to read seven books in seven days (or #7books7days which I tagged my tweets with). Although I did not read seven books (clearly) I won’t right it off as a mega failure because I did manage to finish three books that week! Three! In a week! That’s the total of what I read in February!

I also credit the success of my upwards reading habits this month due to I’ve joined two different book clubs with my friends. One is just with my former college roommate; we’ve read Six of Crows and are working our way through Crooked Kingdom now. I would’ve never read these books before on my own, and it’s so much fun having someone read at the same pace as you. Another group of college friends and I have formed a mini-book club where we’ve been reading about a book a month and discussing it over Google chat. It’s nice to be held accountable for both reading frequently and keeping in touch with my friends.

Finishing Ten Years in the Tub was a life accomplishment if I must say so. It was not a hard read; it was funny and gripping at times and I came away with literally a hundred books added to my to-read list on Goodreads. But it did set me up for the method of reading which I am doing right now and hating: reading a gentle paced but entertaining book slowly, while finishing a fast-paced one in a third of the time. This must end. How else can you explain why it’s taking me so long to read Hidden Figures (which I am thoroughly enjoying) while breezing through Another Brooklyn in one sitting?

Actually, it’s probably not fair to compare the two books. Another Brooklyn read like an expanded poem; beautiful, haunting, and mysterious. It’s a short novel that follows a young girl through her defining years as a teenager growing up in Brooklyn. She lives with her brother and father, and has three best friends with various levels of secrets. I devoured the book in one sitting.

I finished Gizelle’s Bucket List in my quest to try and read seven books in seven days. I got an advanced reader copy from Barnes and Noble and immediately resonated with the story, as my own dog was put down last year. I was already crying (in public, I should add) after finishing the first chapter. Overall, it was a cute book and an extremely relatable story to anyone with a dog, but I was left wanting a lot more out of it. I wrote a more detailed review on Goodreads after I just finished it.

My manager at Barnes and Noble recommended Toradora! while we were scoping out the manga section with a teenager one night. I bought it on a total whim, (I can’t tell you the last time I bought a manga) and finished it right when I got home. It’s a very cute story about two misunderstood teenagers who are in love with the other’s best friend. Their classmates are (wrongfully) scared of them, which leaves them sad and lonely but leaves us as their audience eager for the comedy that ensues out of their misfortune. I enjoyed reading it, but I probably won’t be continuing on with the series.

Ok. So. I read Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. I saved this one for last because I honestly have so much to say about it and I didn’t want to run out of energy. Reading this book was an emotional rollercoaster; I would often have to take small breaks before I could keep reading because some lines would just KILL me.  Between the plot twists, the witty banter, the terrifying backstories I couldn’t control myself. Six of Crows was the perfect recipe for a book I wasn’t supposed to like, but it tricked me and made me fall in love with it.

Typically, I don’t enjoy fantasy, I can never commit to a series, and I’m apprehensive over YA after I’ve been scorned too many times. I most enjoy stories that are character driven, and a fantasy world gets in the way for me. I’ve been know to stop reading a book series after the second one, but Six of Crows is only a duology so I figured if I was going to try to read a fantasy series, this one would be it. I cannot recommend this book enough. If you’ve read it please comment and let’s chat because I’m still dying.

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