Friday, 16 September 2016

September 2016 - Reading Wrap-up: Part 1

I have been reading A LOT this month already so I thought it would be a better idea to split my monthly wrap-up into two parts, so it is less of an ordeal.

No five star ratings as of yet this month but plenty of good reads!

Now on to the books:

★★ - The Enchanted April by Elizabeth Von Arnim

This wins the award for the most meh book of the month. Four ladies rent a castle in Italy for the month of April to have a break from their 'insufferable' (not really) lives. The story started off as witty and humorous but it became increasingly dull as the book went on. I felt so distant from the characters and just could not identify with them at all. Quite a silly and superficial story and I did not enjoy it that much.

★ - You by Caroline Kepnes

I was beyond excited to finally get around to reading this. The main character Joe becomes obsessed with a girl who comes into the bookshop where he works one day. He starts to stalk her and inserts himself into her life. Although I did enjoy this book, it was just an average read for me and i expected it to be a lot darker. It reminded me a lot of Perfect Days, which is in my opinion better. The ending was predictable and I don't think I will read the sequel.

★★★ - Angel Killer by Deborah Blum

A super short issue of the online magazine, The Atavist. Blum tells the true story of Albert Fish who abducted and ate children in 1920s New York. It was beyond gruesome but it was a really fast and interesting read. The trial of Albert Fish is examined and it is a really interesting short piece of non-fiction. Of course I ended up wishing it had more detail and was longer but I would highly recommend it.

 - The Mauricewood Devils by Dorothy Alexander

A historical fiction focusing on an obscure mining disaster that occurred in 1889 in Penicuik, Scotland. Using a dual narrative that focuses on the wife and the daughter of a miner that was trapped. Its a really heart-wrenching story of how the mining disaster affected the community, but is also a commentary on the corrupt owners and the health and safety of the time period. I found it  equally fascinating and horrifying. 

The third book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, this is my favourite so far. The star of this book is Zsadist and his burgeoning relationship with Bella which he so fiercely resists. I just loved his backstory, and strangely I did not find this one as cringey as the two before. Maybe I'm just not noticing it anymore! This series will not be everybody's cup of tea but I love it, I think the vampire world the author has created is really unique and interesting. This was a re-read for me.

 - Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier

A classic work of gothic fiction, I adored Rebecca. It is very reminiscent of Jane Eyre but it's not quite as enjoyable. The nameless narrator becomes the second Mrs. de Winter and starts her married life at her husband's ancestral home, Manderley. Mr. de Winter's first wife Rebecca had recently died but her presence is still oppressively felt throughout the house. This book was absolutely chilling, I got goosebumps whilst reading and I could never predict where the story was going to go. The only issue I had with it was the big reveal, I did not trust a certain person's version of events and I felt a lot of mixed feelings. As I finished the book it became even more mysterious to me upon reflection. A great read.

 - I've Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella

Hilarious and cheesy, I really enjoyed this book. It is my second Sophie Kinsella novel and although it wasn't quite as good as Can You Keep a Secret? it was still thoroughly enjoyable. The whole book is told through Poppy's first person perspective as she loses her priceless engagement ring at a hotel function, gets mugged, and then ends up finding a mobile phone in a bin that belongs to CEO Sam Roxton's PA. Lots of twists and turns ensue. This was a perfect palette cleanser and was just what I wanted. 

Featuring a very unconventional love story between a thirteen year old girl and a twenty something man, this book really pushes the moral boundaries. Wavy is a daughter of a drug dealer and has had a deeply troubled upbringing. Kellen is her father's associate and ends up looking after Wavy as her father is never around and her mother is mentally checked out most of the time. Wavy and Kellen's relationship felt very natural despite being fundamentally wrong and the way it is written is just phenomenal. This book challenged my biases and perceptions and I would highly recommend it as I just could not put it down.

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