Wrap Up

Middle Mark | March 2019

Middle Mark

So far my reading month has been really good. I have read a lot more than I thought I would after only reading about 4 books in February. Another bonus is all the books I have read so far have been 5 or 4 stars, I have really been enjoying the books I have decided to pick up. I was thinking I was going to be entering a book slump since I have been reading slower than usual, but it seems that I have been able to avoid it for now. Anyway, here are the books I finished so far this month.

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Read 2Down Among the Sticks and Bones (Wayward Children, #2)Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed the second installment of this series. It was wonderful to see more of the worlds beyond the doors and learning more about Jack and Jill. I have already told quite a few people to start this series. It is a fun retelling and reimagining of our beloved fairytales with a gruesome and interesting twist.

The writing is beautiful, the characters are unique, and overall I just loved this book as much as the first.

View all my reviews


If, ThenIf, Then by Kate Hope Day

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I want to start off by saying I received this book from publisher via netgalley for free in exchange for an honest review. Also, if you want to know about the specifics on what I liked and did not like, please check out my post, REVIEW | If, Then by Kate Hope Day. I did a whole explanation of my rating and I would love it if you checked it out.

View all my reviews


The Count of Monte CristoThe Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I ended up enjoying this novel a lot more than I thought I would. For it’s size it was very fast paces and things were happening constantly. There was love, betrayal, deceit, revenge, adventures, and travels. There were pirates, princes, and many other works of life. When I sat down to read this book I would fly through it. I really enjoyed seeing parallels through some of the characters as well as seeing people struggle with right and wrong, and trying to define justice. This was most definitely an adventure pushed by a mans need for revenge.

The one thing I did not like was at times it was hard to keep track of who is who. I ended up going onto spark notes and printing out the character list and it really helped. When/if you read this you will see why I needed to a little bit of help to keep track of this.

There are some dark themes in this book, so be warned. There is some gruesome stuff, stories of past wrongs that were a little detailed as well, and some talk of self harm. I do not have difficulty with reading about these themes, but I know that others might so I thought I would mention.

View all my reviews

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Currently Reading 2

The Last Hours by Minette Walters

The Last Hours (Black Death, #1)

I am slowly reading this historical fiction while I am on my lunch break at work. It surround the time of the onset of the black plague. I am really liking how this book is showing how confused, closed minded, and scared it is portraying those who saw the devastation. I also like how it gives a peak into life during this time for a majority of the peasants who were tied to the land. I am currently 61 pages in.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

The Priory of the Orange Tree

Sadly, I have only gotten to read about 35 pages of this book due to this month getting very, very busy. I look forward to diving into this fun fantasy novel as soon as I have more free time.

Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

Neverworld Wake

I am buddy reading this very interesting thriller with Reg, Amy, and Jenna this month and so far I am really, really loving it. It is very interesting idea and so far the execution is done really well. I will admit I am bouncing between the ebook and audiobook from my library, but I am flying through it. I am currently sitting at 34%.

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Beat the Backlist 2

Current TBR: 39

Current Backlist TBR: 20

Divider 2What was the last book you read?

What are you planning on reading next?

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Tags

Tag |I Should Have Read That Book

TagTimel12:17Tagged by Liz over on Travel in Retrospect, Emma over on The Terror of Knowing, and JJ over on Ever the Crafter . Their blogs are just as amazing as they are. When I saw that they tagged me in this I was so excited about it. I love the idea of this tag. Liz, Emma, and JJ are, like I said amazing, but their blog are filled with fun posts and great bookish posts. You should check their blogs out as well as check out how they answered this tag.

On to the tag!

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  • Thank the person who tagged you and link back to their post
  • Link to the creator’s blog (booksnest.co.uk) in your post
  • Answer the questions below
  • Tag 10 others to take part
  • ENJOY THE TAG!

-My Answers-

A book that a certain friend is always telling you to read

Thunderhead (Arc of a Scythe, #2)

I will have to say that Reg and Jenna have been telling me to read the second book in the Scythe series by Neal Shusterman. The first book in the series was a buddy read, I enjoyed it at the time and I still think it was a very good book, but for some reason I am putting off reading Thunderhead. Maybe one day!

A book that’s been on your TBR forever and yet you still haven’t picked it up

World Without End (Kingsbridge, #2)

The longest book on my TBR would be World Without End by Ken Follett. I purchased it on Apr 06, 2018. This is the second book in the Kingsbridge series so I don’t want to say to much about it. I read and loved the first one so I think I will like this one just as much.   I am planning on reading it in April so it will not remain on my TBR much longer.

A book in a series you’ve started, but haven’t gotten round to finishing yet

The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2)

I could just say the last two books I just talked about honestly, but I still need to read The Wicked King by Holly Black, the second book in The Folk of the Air series. I really enjoyed the first book, The Cruel Price and I have always enjoyed her writing. I am waiting to read this for when I sit down for an entire day to read because I can easily read hers in a day.

A classic you’ve always liked the sound of, but never actually read

Middlemarch

I thin one classic that I have always wanted to read, but just have not gotten around to it as of this point would be Middlemarch by George Eliot. 

A popular book that it seems everyone but you has read

The Night Circus

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, it seems to be really popular for a decent chuck of time. I have read the description a few times over the years and it has never called out to me personally. But, I can see that people love it so that is wonderful.

A book that inspired a film/TV adaptation that you really love, but you just haven’t read it yet

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1)

Well, the only book to film/TV adaptation I have watched and not read the book of would be Game of Thrones and I was sick of it before the first reasons was done. I just could not get into it for some reason, because of that I have never read the books or even attempted to try to.

A book you see all over Instagram but haven’t picked up yet

Daisy Jones & The Six

I keep seeing Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid. While I do own it because I LOVED her last book, I have yet to start reading it. This is another book I want to wait until I have a little more down time to read so I can really get into it without having to take frequent breaks.


-I Tag-

Reg

Jenna

Amy

Emma

Erica

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Feel free to consider your self tagged as well!

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TBR

March TBR | 2019

ToBeRead12:17

Hello everyone, it is a new month. That means I write another TBR that I may or may not stick too. Last month I did not stick to my TBR in the slightest because I was on the verge of going into a book slump and I decided to be a full fledge mood reader instead of reading a mixture of mood and set TBR. Anyway, I feel much better in regards to the possible slump so I wanted to try something new. I decided to post a few polls to twitter to have you, my wonderful readers, to pick my TBR!

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The Last Hours by Minette Walters

The Last Hours (Black Death, #1)

This book has been on my TBR since July of 2018 and it is about time I get to this book. The main reason I ended up with this book was because I got it as an ARC at bookcon. I explained the types of books I liked and I was given this as a recommendation. As soon as they said historical fiction and black plague I said “I’ll take that”. That does not speak well for my interests, but who cares. It sounds perfect.

Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

Neverworld Wake

This book I am picking up because it was picked by my friend Jenna for our buddy reading group to read this month. I am excited to read this with Jenna, Amy, and Reg and talk about this thriller. As soon as I looked up the description I was so happy about her choice and I put a hold on it through my library at once.

Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire

Down Among the Sticks and Bones (Wayward Children, #2)

This was another book I put on the poll on twitter to have others help me pick my TBR. I really loved the first book in the series and I am really hoping to enjoy this one as well. I am also really happy that this one won because I feel like I am reading a lot of big books as of late and this small book I think will break them up wonderfully.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

The Priory of the Orange Tree

I preorederd this book months ago and I really want to get to it sooner rather than later. I am excited for this adult fantasy from an author I have really enjoyed over the years. Also, how can anyone go wrong with a fantasy with dragons?!

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What are you reading this month?

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Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up | February 2019

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After reading so many books in January I was bound to read less this month for two reasons. World became really, really busy and I was overwhelmed and the month is only 28 days long. Three more days I feel like I would have read more, but oh well there is always next month.

Even though I did not feel like I read a ton, I did manage to read 4 books, so a book a week is not bad at all. Three of those books were taken right off of my TBR while the fourth was one I reread. So, not to shabby over all. Without more rambling and me wishing I was able to read more, here are the books I read this month!

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In the Hurricane's Eye: The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at YorktownIn the Hurricane’s Eye: The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at Yorktown by Nathaniel Philbrick

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

One thing I really liked about this was not only did it talk about Yorktown, it talked about what was going on right before and where the major players had their heads at. It explained things very well and had quite a few maps to help visually explain what was going on. This is a great addition if you ask me.

Being a history major I knew quite a bit of the information going into this book, but I did learn some new things and more details about the battle itself. I would recommend this to anyone who is interested in the battle or in the revolution. Beginner and those who know a bit of the details.

View all my reviews


Save the DateSave the Date by Morgan Matson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed how over the top this book is. The main character was a little in a lala land and idealized everything and at times I found it really annoying from time to time. I feel like she needed some tough love sooner rather than later when it came to living her own life in the real world.

I loved that the setting was at a wedding, I thought it was a really good setting. I laughed at some of the events and can I just say I loved the puppy waffle. The comedic timing of the puppy was spot on as well as his mischievous time.

Overall, this was a really good contemporary that broke up the heavy reading I have been reading as of late. I read through it very quickly when I did pick it up.

View all my reviews

 

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Middle Mark Books 2

I didn’t want to just rewrite my review, but if you want to know the details of my thoughts on these books please see my post, Middle Mark | February 2019. 

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Divider 2What is your favorite book you read this month? Have you read any of the books I have mentioned?What are you planning on reading next?

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Hauls

Book Haul | January & February 2019

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So, this year I restarted by read 5, buy 1 and so far it has been going really well last month I didn’t really haul many books so I decided to combine January and February. I will say that the challenge is going really nicely. My owned TBR is currently sitting at 37 books, which I am very proud of. I am well on my way to get into the teens, which is my ultimate goal. Anyway, I am going to stop blabbing on and on and get to the book!

-Pre Read 5, Buy 1-

The Wicked King by Holly Black

The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2)

So I love Holly Black and I really enjoyed reading the first book in this series, The Cruel Prince. I had this book preordered and it was placed before the new year and also because I was really excited about it I needed to preordered it. Anyway, I am really excited to get to it in the near future.


-Post Read 5, Buy 1-

Washington Black by Esi Edugyan

Washington Black

I decided to pick this up for Black History Month… oops I read it in January because I could not wait and I really liked it. If you want to see my full review of it please go to my Monthly Wrap Up | January 2019 it was really enjoyable  and I really do suggest it.

Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb

Assassin's Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy, #1)

So, I have been eyeing starting this series for some time and I finally decided to pick it up. I have been wanting to get more into adult fantasy and right and left people have said to give Robin Hobb a try and I read the description and it sounds really interesting.

Early Riser by Jasper Fforde

Early Riser

So this book is from my Book of the Month | February 2019 post I did a few weeks ago. Like I said in the post, this book is a science fiction read nothing like I have read before. It reminded me of a recent movie with Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence where they wake up in space and everyone else is asleep. On top of that I would really like to hibernate sometimes so I can live through the characters lol.

 

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Have you read any of these books? Are any of them on your TBR? Which one would you read first?

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Wrap Up

Middle Mark | February 2019

Middle Mark

Hello and welcome to my mid month check in! This month I feel like I have been doing a ton of reading between buddy reads with Jenna @JK I’m Exploring, Reg @Bookish In Bed, and Amy @ Tomes with Tea. The Co-hosting a Count of MOnte Cristo readalong on instagram with Jenna. All of which I have been LOVING. I had no idea I would love Monte so much! Anyway, between reading those I was able to read

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Read 2
The Clockmaker's DaughterThe Clockmaker’s Daughter by Kate Morton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have to say that the description for this book does not give it justice. There is so much more to this book, but I don’t want to give details and ruin the surprise. It was really magical and I loved the intertwining of fairy tales, history, and a thriller all mixed into one. The authors writing style is very flowery and enjoyable.

If you find the description interesting, I think you will like it even more than you think because there is so much more.
View all my reviews


Death Note (All-in-One Edition)Death Note by Tsugumi Ohba

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Overall I thought this was a very unique and interesting series. The artwork was fantastic and I felt that it was the perfect match to the story line. For the size of this I felt that I read it fairly quickly, that was mainly because a lot of stuff happened for the first. 60-70% of this book. I felt like the thought process and mental games that were played in here were very well done. The main reason why I did not give this series more stars is because once a particular character died the quality seemed to go down with the mental games and I felt like at times there was something for the sake of events, but it seems kinda random and forced at times. I also felt that the story slowed down all of a sudden at a point and I felt like I had to push myself through because I came so far already.

View all my reviews

Divider 2Currently Reading 2

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas-

The Count of Monte Cristo

I am currently page 298 at the time of posting this, but as I have said already in my into I am LOVING this book so much more than I thought I would. Due to its size I thought it would be slow, but I feel like so much happens each chapter. It is mind blowing. I highly recommend this classic.

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy-

War and Peace

I am on page 154. Yes, I am making progress in my classic of the year while reading Monte as well. Since I am reading a book every 3 weeks, I have a lot of time to read others books. I have read one peace and one war section and so far I think I am enjoying the peace sections more. I think becasue I am seeing more class distinctions that I learned about when I was in college and I really love how the author made a point of adding those in there to showcase the class system in Russia, but also how they spoke more French than Russian.

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What are you reading? Have you read any of the books I have read or am currently reading?

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Lets Talk

Lets Talk | Five Star Predictions

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So, for readers there is nothing better than a 5 start book. As I read more and more I have been able to determine if I will like a book, but I find it harder to predict a 5 star read. So, I wanted to flex that muscle a little and really take a hard look at my TBR and see if I can predict some 5 star reads.

When I rate a book 5 stars it means a few things. First, the plot and characters were really enjoyable. It was not completely predictable and flowed nicely. Characters were not annoying or if they character has a fault it is to display a particular lesson or commenting on something else through their writing. I have to find myself surprised, angry, happy, excited, elated in combination or separate. The characters need to be distinct. But, overall I need to enjoy the ride, then entire ride.

5stars

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My Predictions

The Overstory by Richard Powers

The Overstory

After reading this description I knew I needed to have this book. It seems like a mixture of magical realism and science? Also, kind of a sad future we may be heading for? It seems like a warning letter to what we as a planet to become and honestly, I just really love the idea of this book so much.

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

The Silence of the Girls

I picked this as a Book of the Month book late last year and I vividly remember it being the second description I read and knowing right away that I needed to have it. It tells a story of women throughout history who have done so much for the world, but have remained silent, it seems like a historical fiction of sorts.

Bringing Down the Colonel by Patricia Miller

Bringing Down the Colonel: A Sex Scandal of the Gilded Age, and the "Powerless" Woman Who Took on Washington

I got this book as a gift and I love it so much. I have heard whispers of this case, but I am very excited to learn more about it. Since it is was one of the first major cases of a women coming forward and saying she was assaulted by a man in power. It seems like it will be a very hard hitting factual book.

The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner

The Mars Room

I will be 100% honest here. I am basing this off of the cover. I know, don’t judge a book by the cover, but the vibe I am getting from the cover has me really excited. Also, to be fair I would not have bought this book if it was not part of my Reading Goals | Reading a Shortlist. But, I am very happy I did because the description is interesting as well.

The Wicked King by Holly Black

The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2)

I really loved the first book in this series, The Cruel Prince, and I have love quite a few of Holly Blacks novels in the past. So, I think it is safe to say that I will love this one as well.

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What was your last 5 star read? What do you think about my predictions?

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TBR

February TBR | 2019

ToBeRead12:17

Hello and welcome to my February TBR, my first one of 2019. Last month I didn’t feel like making a TBR because I wanted to focus on reading some classics and finishing the books I started. Since I am finished with those I thought it was time to make one. I am going to make this post short and sweet so without more of a delay, here is my TBR!

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Save the Date by Morgan Matson

Save the Date

This book I am kinda ashamed to still have on my TBR. I picked it up when I met Morgan Matson at BookCon 2018. She was so nice and lovely, we had a great laugh about my corgi lanyard. I have read and loved previous books by her, but for some reason I have not picked this up. I think it is because I have not been in the mood for a contemporary. I think I am finally in the mood for it though. I want something light after all the intense reads of last month.

World Without End by Ken Follett

World Without End (Kingsbridge, #2)

This is the next book in the Kingsbridge series, which I started last year due to the Haul | Bookseller Picks My Books post I did. I ended up loving the first book, a very large historical fiction. I ended up going out right away and getting the second book, but I did not feel like reading such a large book right away. So, I decided now is finally the time since the 3rd book has finally came out in paperback and I can get that if I end up liking this one just as much.

DividerTBR Jar Pick

The Stand by Stephen King

So it seems that I will be reading quite a few large books this upcoming months and I am not sure how well that is going to go, but I am going to do my best to at least finish this TBR jar pick. I have been wanting to read this for sometime, but since it is so large I have been putting it off because I felt like I did not have the time to dedicate to it. While I do have the paperback edition, the cover you can see below, I think I might get the ebook edition so I can carry it around with me without having the weight of it.

The Stand

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What are you reading this month?

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Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up | January 2019

Monthly Wrap Up

Well, here I am to share my first monthly wrap up of 2019. It seems like this month has gone slow, but also thrown by for me. I saw my first snow fall of the season, started playing around with programming and painting once again. I feel refreshed as well as have a drive I have not had in some time. I am not sure why the new year sparked this in me, but it has and I am happy about it.

So, as before, some of these books have been previously shown in Middle Mark | January 2019, but I wanted to post a comprehensive wrap-up. If you wish to skip over the books I already talked about I have no problem with that, but I have quite a few more books I read because I ended up reading 11 books.

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Harry Potter: A Journey Through A History of Magic

A Journey Through a History of Magic by The British Library

4stars

This is a beautiful book, it details so much of the history of magic that influenced Harry Potter’s world as well as a peek into early drafts, edits, and early doodles of the book. Even though I went to the exhibit I still read through this book cover to cover and really enjoyed it. (Originally found here).

Educated by Tara Westover

Educated by Tara Westover

5stars

I absolutely loved this book, I was raw, emotional, and heartbreaking. If you are looking to read a memoir I highly suggest you pick it up. The writing is amazing, there is something about this book that just appalls you, but also inspires you due to the life that Tara Westover has lived. (Originally found here).

The Bullet Journal Method by Ryder Carroll

The Bullet Journal Method by Ryder Carroll

3stars

Best for beginners and those who are not happy with their current bullet journals. If you already have a bullet journal you are happy with you can pass on this book.

For those who are beginners this is a great way to learn about the process and find out what a bujo actually is. It is well organized and I like the take what works for you and leave the rest mentality of the book. (Originally found here).

The Complete Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

The Complete Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

3stars

I have read and reread quite a few Sherlock stories. I will admit at this point some stories I will continue to rereading, but others I will never pick up again for one reason or another. Mainly because I did not enjoy the  the thrill of the story. It is a wonderful collection to have. (Originally found here).

Kawaii Doodle Cuties: Sketching Super-Cute Stuff from Around the World

Kawaii Doodle Cuties: Sketching Super-Cute Stuff from Around the World by Pic Candle

4stars

I recently wrote an entire review of this book, you can find that here: REVIEW | Kawaii Doodle Cuties: Sketching Super-Cute Stuff from Around the World by Pic Candle / Zainab Khan. But, I will say overall I think this is a really fun drawing book. I think it gives great practice when it comes to learning to draw basic shapes and developing better hand control while drawing. While some of the tutorials take up jumps in the steps as stated before, you can figure it out with some time. As with anything new you are learning with practice, you improve. If you are looking to learn to draw or just want to play around, I think this is an adorable option for you. (Originally found here).

The Familiars by Stacey Halls

The Familiars

5stars

I wrote an entire review of this book, but I will sum it up here. I really enjoyed this novel. I loved how period accurate it was and how the author used real names from the year that this is taking place. I also enjoy how she embodied the time period, but also exposed the issues that and pointed out how unfair the system was towards particular people. It is safe to say that I am preordering this novel. (Originally found here REVIEW | The Familiars by Stacey Halls)

The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe

The Raven

3stars

Overall, this was a really good short eerie short story. I can see why it is a classic that people talk about time and time again. But, it also did not wow me like other eerie stories  I have read in the past.

A Very Large Expanse of Sea by Tahereh Mafi

A Very Large Expanse of Sea

5stars

This was an amazing read, I am kinda mad at myself for putting it off so the last few months. I really loved the conversation that book brings to the forefront. How it shows a different perspective that I really appreciate being shared with me. I also loved how I could relate tot the it me period this book takes place in. I remember the walkmans, start of the iPods and I really relate to the high prices text messages and minuets used to be. I feel like the mixture of highly relatable aspects as well as seeing a new perspective really  made this such a wonderful book. I highly suggest you picking this up. I feel like I am not articulating myself quite right, but I loved this book.

Feminists Don’t Wear Pink and Other Lies by Scarlett Curtis

Feminists Don't Wear Pink and Other Lies: Amazing Women on What the F-Word Means to Them

4stars

I really enjoyed the fact that this book had so many voices and talked on so many topics. There was a mixture of playlists, lists, essays, poetry, interviews and more. It was a wonderful read that allowed me to read the thoughts of some people I know, but also expose me to others I will now be looking into their work.

Another thing I loved was the continued reading section where books are recommended and also a section to workout your own thoughts on feminism. This book doesn’t just talk at you, it starts a conversation. (Originally found here).

From Here to Eternity by Caitlin Doughty

From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death

4stars

I really loved how this seemed to be more of an anthropological look at death as apposed to her other book. I really enjoyed how she explored how cultures within the US and around the world pay respect to their loved ones with no judgement. It really is eye opening how we are all the same species, but we have our own ways we pay respect to those we love. It is comforting that we can all find a way to honor those who came before us. I hope to see more writings by her because I have enjoyed both of her books immensely. (Originally found here).

The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

5stars

I found this book to be a mixture of And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie and something else I cannot quite place at this time. I really liked how this book was written, it flowed really nicely and the voices of the characters were clear and definite. The way that the author was able to weave this jumping time frame is masterful! Also, I was surprised quite a few times while reading it. The ending really shocked me and I loved the twist it took. (Originally found here).

Washington Black by Esi Edugyan

Washington Black

4stars

This book is such an adventure, it starts with a young boy, age 11. Sadly, he is a slave on a sugar plantation in Barbados run by two brothers. The author wrote a beautiful book that shows the ugly that is slavery. It talks about awful psychological games played by owners and the bad treatment many had to endure unfairly. I also like how the author showed abolitionists and aspects of the underground railroad. The dangers of faced by those who escaped and freed those who did not belong to them. I also really enjoyed the science, art, and almost steampunk elements. I am honestly not doing this book justice, but I will say it was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2018 and it is well deserved. I also have to agree with the quote on the front of my book calling it a masterpiece.  (Originally found here).

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Reviews

REVIEW | The Familiars by Stacey Halls

BookReview12:17

* I received this book from publisher via netgalley for free in exchange for an honest review.*

The FamiliarsDescription

Young Fleetwood Shuttleworth, a noblewoman, is with child again. None of her previous pregnancies have borne fruit, and her husband, Richard, is anxious for an heir. Then Fleetwood discovers a hidden doctor’s letter that carries a dire prediction: she will not survive another birth. By chance she meets a midwife named Alice Grey, who promises to help her deliver a healthy baby. But Alice soon stands accused of witchcraft.

Is there more to Alice than meets the eye? Fleetwood must risk everything to prove her innocence. As the two women’s lives become intertwined, the Witch Trials of 1612 loom. Time is running out; both their lives are at stake. Only they know the truth. Only they can save each other.

Rich and compelling, set against the frenzy of the real Pendle Hill Witch Trials, this novel explores the rights of 17th-century women and raises the question: Was witch-hunting really women-hunting? Fleetwood Shuttleworth, Alice Grey and the other characters are actual historical figures. King James I was obsessed with asserting power over the lawless countryside (even woodland creatures, or “familiars,” were suspected of dark magic) by capturing “witches”—in reality mostly poor and illiterate women.

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What I Liked

I would like to start off by saying, this is going to be one of these reviews where I just want to gush about a book and ramble. I am going to do my absolute best and actually write a review that makes sense.

The main thing I like about this historical fiction novel is the fact it doesn’t just take place in the past. I have read so many historical novels that just take place during a time period, but this novel really encapsulates the events, social order, societal expectations. The author embedded characters and people who were alive during the time period and even though this is a work of fiction you can tell that she did a lot of research and in knowledgeable about this period.

One part that I really like is how accurate she was when showing how women were treated during this period in time. I have read a few reviews that said that the main character is meek, but I have to respectfully disagree with this. During this period in time, if you were not meek and subservient as a women, SADLY, your life could be in serious danger depending on who your husband was. I found that even though that this character was controlled to an extent, she was also free and really pushed the barriers. A lot of women would have been deathly afraid or just did not think of doing a lot of the stuff Fleetwood has done. This historical fiction novel, like I said earlier, is pretty darn accurate historical fiction. Do I think this was good? No, but regrettably it is a great representation.

I also liked how class prejudices were lightly touched on, especially with the witch themes throughout this book. I felt that this book not only was accurate, but it also tried to show how wrong these social norms were.

Apart from the historical aspects of this novel, I really enjoyed the writing. I sat down in 3 sittings and I flew through this. It was fast paced, but did not jump in a way that made you think you missed something. I also enjoyed that it did not feel like the writing was modern, it was a nice touch and really added to the atmosphere of the book. I also felt genuine anger at some parts of the book and I felt myself tearing up at others. I really was rooting for Fleetwood and Alice.

What I Didn’t Like

The only fault I could even think about is not knowing more of what happened to a particular a character.

Overall Thoughts

If you could not tell, I really enjoyed this novel. I loved how period accurate it was and how the author used real names from the year that this is taking place. I also enjoy how she embodied the time period, but also exposed the issues that and pointed out how unfair the system was towards particular people. It is safe to say that I am preordering this novel.

Thank-you for listening to my gushing rambles!

5stars

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Author Links

Stacey Halls

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Book Information

Publication Date: February 19th 2019

Publisher: Mira Books

List Price: $26.99

ISBN: 9780778369189

Pages: 352 pages

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