Looking back, it seems that every year I have the same issue. All summer, June – August, I barely read. On the rare occasion I do pick up a book more often than not I DNF it. I don’t know what it is about summer but it makes me miserable and when I am unhappy I don’t want to read or do much of anything, quite frankly.
However, with September comes cooler weather, outdoor walks, refreshing breezes, and a sense of renewal. Those breezes also bring back my reading mojo and it slaps me right in the face.
Empire of Gold (The Daevabad Trilogy #2) by S.A. Chakraborty – This is probably the most stunning series conclusion I have ever had the privilege to read. Chakraborty crafted an epic tale, start to finish, with characters that felt just as real, if not more so, than any person I pass on the street. This story swept me away from book one and along with the heartbreak of this final book it also tied everything up. There were no loose ends, no wondering what happened to so-and-so. It was damn near perfect. 4.5/5
Mirage (Mirage #1) by Somaiya Daud – Mirage had been languishing on my physical shelves for over a year before I finally picked it up. It was the perfect book to get my reading mojo back after my summer of reading silence. This YA fantasy is fairly short but it sure packs a punch and also shows dynamic character growth. I really enjoyed this read and am looking forward to picking up the next book of the series. 4/5
A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire (Blood and Ash #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout – x2 – Pardon me but…I LOVE THIS BOOK. Love it. This beauty comes in at 637 pages and I read it twice in a week. Yup. It was required. Outside of SJM I believe this series was my first foray into new adult fantasy and I think I have found my genre. The writing style kept me engaged, the characters feel like they live in my soul now, and the story itself has high stakes. I love this book. 5/5
From Blood and Ash (Blood and Ash #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout – I’m sorry, but how could I read the second book of the series twice without picking this one up, too? I have to say, reading this one a second time after going through the second book made a lot of plot points make a lot more sense. There are so many call backs in Flesh and Fire to little moments in this one that would go unnoticed unless you knew to look for them. Look, I just love this series, alright? 4/5
Silent in the Grave (Lady Julia Grey #1) by Deanna Raybourn – This was the second time I had read this book, the first being back in 2017. I love a good historical mystery and when they come with a dash of romance I am fully committed. This series by Raybourn is an absolute delight. The main character is, at first, a wall flower but grows into this feisty, determined, brilliant woman. The mystery thoroughly stumped me the first time and the slow burn romance is epic. 4/5
Nocturna (A Forgery of Magic #1) by Maya Motayne – Sigh. I wanted to love this book. I really did. The premise sounded absolutely amazing and I wanted to get caught up in a Latin inspired world with magic and kingdoms at stake. Instead I got to the halfway point and had only seen cut and paste characters in a world that had no depth doing absolutely nothing except talk about…nothing. For a book that had so much potential this one really stung.
The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon – This one hurts. I love Shannon’s The Bone Season series. I love her online presence. I love the cover and premise of this book. I wanted to love this book so much I tried reading it three different formats; physical, audio, and digital. But…I just couldn’t. I got to about 25% through and the idea of picking it up again just depressed me so I finally have decided to throw in the towel. There is a story there, a wonderful one I’m sure, but I’m not the right reader for this book. Jumping between POVs chapter to chapter did not let me get entrenched in the narrator’s story or figure out what they wanted, cared about, or anything about them. They all felt like copies of each other because without the scenery change I would never have know who I was with. The idea of the dragons sounds amazing but even when they showed up on page I felt nothing for them. Putting this book in the DNF pile hurts.
In October I hope to read at least four books, one of which is most definitely going to be Schwab’s Addie LaRue. The others? Well, I had a shaky TBR for the rest of the year and it has already gone out the window, into the river, and floated out to sea so for now I’ll just play it by ear. However, I need Addie in my life. Truth be told I am a little nervous to read it. I was so sure I would love Priory and then that went down the crapper. What if Addie is the same way?
I also am going to try to film a Booktube series discussing stories by Edgar Allan Poe and retellings of those stories. Will the series be a flop? Probably but I have the urge to do it anyway. Lets go!
This month I also intend to start brainstorming and outlining a story for NaNoWriMo this November. I have failed at my attempts the last couple of years but I have a good feeling about this year. I know I want to do a NA fantasy but I need to get some of the details straight in my head before jumping in head first.
That is all for September. I didn’t do many posts but hopefully I can sort that out in October but we will see. I hope you are all doing well and staying safe.
America, remember to request your ballot for the November election and get that mailed in ASAP. If you aren’t registered to vote please get registered. I feel like this election is going to be a close one and every vote counts.