Wrap Up

Wrap Up | April 2018

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Hello and welcome to the end of April, boy does time fly. I am looking forward to next month though. I feel like it is going to finally begin to feel like Spring.

This month has been a ton of fun reading wise. I actually read every book I out on my TBR, which never happens. I also took part in the Magical Readathon OWLs Exams, you can see my TBR:  TBR | Magical Readathon OWLs Exams and my Wrap Up:____. It was a ton of fun and I really enjoyed myself. I got to books I have been putting off.

While I have a whole wrap up with those books separately I wanted to also share the books that I read that did not fit in any of those magical categories.

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Books I Finished

The Wicked Boy by Kate Summerscale

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

I wrote an entire review on this non-fiction account of this victorian era child murderer which you can find here:REVIEW | The Wicked Boy by Kate Summerscale. Overall, I enjoyed it and I am glad to have finally gotten to it.

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Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent

Unraveling Oliver

I LOVED this thriller so much. I found a brand new author that I am going to further explore. I was so draw into the story and I felt such intense feelings. If you like thrillers I highly suggest you look into this.

 

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I am Still Reading

The Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer

The Female Persuasion

The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

The Pillars of the Earth

You can see details about both of these books here: Currently Reading | April 2018.Divider

Overall I read a total of 7 books this month, which is great since I was so busy and I did not think I was really going to get much reading done. Anyway, I hope you had a great month and next month is even better!

What was the best book you read this month?

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Reviews

REVIEW | The Wicked Boy by Kate Summerscale

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The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child MurdererDescription

Early in the morning of Monday 8 July 1895, thirteen-year-old Robert Coombes and his twelve-year-old brother Nattie set out from their small, yellow-brick terraced house in East London to watch a cricket match at Lord’s. Their father had gone to sea the previous Friday, the boys told their neighbours, and their mother was visiting her family in Liverpool. Over the next ten days Robert and Nattie spent extravagantly, pawning their parents’ valuables to fund trips to the theatre and the seaside. But as the sun beat down on the Coombes house, a strange smell began to emanate from the building. When the police were finally called to investigate, the discovery they made sent the press into a frenzy of horror and alarm, and Robert and Nattie were swept up in a criminal trial that echoed the outrageous plots of the ‘penny dreadful’ novels that Robert loved to read. In The Wicked Boy, Kate Summerscale has uncovered a fascinating true story of murder and morality – it is not just a meticulous examination of a shocking Victorian case, but also a compelling account of its aftermath, and of man’s capacity to overcome the past. –goodreads.com

What I Liked

The first thing I noticed while reading this novel is that Kate Summerscale is very thorough. Her knowledge of not just the crime itself, the perpetrator, and his family, but of the town and the time period are easily noticed. She goes into detail of the events of the town and the economic and social conditions that not only put our child murderer and his family in, but may have even contributed to it. Some of the information she shares in this book you know she had to look long and hard for it.

Another things I liked about this book was the content of the book. Now, I enjoy non-fiction very much and enjoy a book mystery. But, this book was different. It deals with the life of a child murderer. Someone who at a very young age decided to kill one of his parents. To me that both intrigues me as well as worries me. A child is meant to me innocent and this action/situation is the farthest things from innocent. Due to this the entire time I read this novel it was both almost morbid, but very thought provoking. It made me think about many topics, but I don’t want to list them because that might be considered a spoiler. I rather not spoil this book for anyone.

The last thing that really stood out to me was the ending of this book, it was an unexpected turn I was not expecting. While a majority of this book made me uncomfortable due to the subject the ending made me think even more about human nature and how and if people can change. Many non-fiction authors tend to stop at the “big” event, sometimes that is a disservice. I really appreciated that fact that Summerscale no only covered and researched the murder and trial, but continued and expanded beyond the “main” event.

What I Didn’t Like

One thing that can be seen as a negative with this book is that it contains a lot of background information. For some people this can be a downside to the book. I personally did not have a problem with this because I loved learning about the town, culture, and other events happening at the time. But, I recognize that for some this is not what they signed up for when they picked up a book about a child murderer.

Overall Thoughts

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this. I think Summerscale did a wonderful job researching and telling the story of Robert Coombes and his brother. Throughout I was interested and I often found myself thinking about the book once I put it down. For me that makes a good non-fiction read. I would say if you enjoy non-fiction, true crime, or reading about morbid topics this book is for you. I just would keep in mind that you will also be learning about the time period etc., but I feel it is needed to understand the environment the Coombes boys lived in. I ended up giving this story novel 4 stars.

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Author Links

Kate Summerscale

http://www.katesummerscale.com

Book Information

Publisher: Penguin Press

Publication Date: July 12th 2016

List Price: $28.00

ISBN:  9781594205781

Pages: 378 pages

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TBR

April TBR | 2018

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Happy April everyone! This month I think I am going to be reading a lot. I am not sure if it is because I read so much in March, but I just have a good feeling about April. This month I am buddy reading two different books, one a non-fiction and the other a thriller. I am also finishing up a non-fiction and a starting a fantasy series. I also am taking part in the Magical Readathon: OWLs Exams. I made a separate TBR a few days ago and explained the readathon a little bit as well. You can find that here: TBR | Magical Readathon OWLs Exams.

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The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer by Kate Summerscale

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

This month I will finish  reading The Wicked Boy with Amy from Tomes with Tea, Regina from Bookish in Bed and  Jenna from J.K. I’m Exploring!

Early in the morning of Monday 8 July 1895, thirteen-year-old Robert Coombes and his twelve-year-old brother Nattie set out from their small, yellow-brick terraced house in East London to watch a cricket match at Lord’s. Their father had gone to sea the previous Friday, the boys told their neighbours, and their mother was visiting her family in Liverpool. Over the next ten days Robert and Nattie spent extravagantly, pawning their parents’ valuables to fund trips to the theatre and the seaside. But as the sun beat down on the Coombes house, a strange smell began to emanate from the building. When the police were finally called to investigate, the discovery they made sent the press into a frenzy of horror and alarm, and Robert and Nattie were swept up in a criminal trial that echoed the outrageous plots of the ‘penny dreadful’ novels that Robert loved to read. In The Wicked Boy, Kate Summerscale has uncovered a fascinating true story of murder and morality – it is not just a meticulous examination of a shocking Victorian case, but also a compelling account of its aftermath, and of man’s capacity to overcome the past.

  • goodreads.com

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Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent

Unraveling Oliver

This is another buddy read with Amy from Tomes with Tea, Regina from Bookish in Bed and  Jenna from J.K. I’m Exploring. What can I say, we love reading and discussing books with one another?

I expected more of a reaction the first time I hit her.”

So begins Liz Nugent’s astonishing debut novel—a chilling, elegantly crafted, and psychologically astute exploration of the nature of evil.

Oliver Ryan, handsome, charismatic, and successful, has long been married to his devoted wife, Alice. Together they write and illustrate award-winning children’s books; their life together one of enviable privilege and ease—until, one evening after a delightful dinner, Oliver delivers a blow to Alice that renders her unconscious, and subsequently beats her into a coma.

In the aftermath of such an unthinkable event, as Alice hovers between life and death, the couple’s friends, neighbors, and acquaintances try to understand what could have driven Oliver to commit such a horrific act. As his story unfolds, layers are peeled away to reveal a life of shame, envy, deception, and masterful manipulation.

With its alternating points of view and deft prose, Unraveling Oliver is “a page-turning, one-sitting read from a brand new master of psychological suspense” (Sunday Independent) that details how an ordinary man can transform into a sociopath.

  • goodreads.com

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Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire

Every Heart a Doorway (Wayward Children, #1)

I have been interested in starting this series for a long time now and I think it is finally time. I have heard awesome things about this series and what I love most is that these books are so short. They are a great break in-between the larger books I read.

Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children
No Solicitations
No Visitors
No Quests

Children have always disappeared under the right conditions; slipping through the shadows under a bed or at the back of a wardrobe, tumbling down rabbit holes and into old wells, and emerging somewhere… else.

But magical lands have little need for used-up miracle children.

Nancy tumbled once, but now she’s back. The things she’s experienced… they change a person. The children under Miss West’s care understand all too well. And each of them is seeking a way back to their own fantasy world.

But Nancy’s arrival marks a change at the Home. There’s a darkness just around each corner, and when tragedy strikes, it’s up to Nancy and her new-found schoolmates to get to the heart of the matter.

No matter the cost.

  • goodreads.com

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Eleanor Roosevelt: Vol 2, The Defining Years, 1933-38 by Blanche Wiesen Cook

Eleanor Roosevelt: Vol 2, The Defining Years, 1933-38

I started this non-fiction account of Eleanor Roosevelt last month and I would like to finish it this month. This is the second book in a trilogy written by Cook, I am hoping it lives up to the first one. Fingers crossed!

Historians, politicians, feminists, critics, and reviewers everywhere have praised Blanche Wiesen Cook’s monumental Eleanor Roosevelt as the definitive portrait of this towering female figure of the twentieth century. Now in her long-awaited, majestic second volume, Cook takes readers through the tumultuous era of the Great Depression, the New Deal, and the gathering storms of World War II, the years of the Roosevelts’ greatest challenges and finest achievements. In her remarkably engaging narrative, Cook gives us the complete Eleanor Roosevelt— an adventurous, romantic woman, a devoted wife and mother, and a visionary policymaker and social activist who often took unpopular stands, counter to her husband’s policies, especially on issues such as racial justice and women’s rights. A biography of scholarship and daring, it is a book for all readers of American history.

  • goodreads.com

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What are you reading this month?

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Wrap Up

WRAP UP | March 2018

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March is a wrap! This month has been an incredible reading month for me, I’m not sure what happened. I just kept zooming through books and a wide variety of them too. I have Manga, thrillers, fantasy, mystery, YA, horror and some non-fiction. I am not sure why my reading was all over the place, but it worked for me.

One thing I find interesting is that I see around the blogosphere and on booktube is that some times people have themed reading months. An example would be a classics month, science fiction month, and so on. I have never been someone who can read one type of book and only that type for a  longer period of time. Have you done this? I am always curious about what reading habits other people have, I guess I am a bit nosey. Anyway, here are the books I read this month and a few books I am in the middle of.

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Books I Finished

Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata

Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run (Death Note, #3)

Over the past month or so I have been reading Death Note, now I am pretty sure this is a manga with 13 volumes so you will be seeing a lot of these covers of the next few months. I have to say I am really enjoying this series. It makes you think about right and wrong and is it the outcome or the intentions that make people good or bad. This whole thing started because my boyfriend picked out this series when I did a little experiment with him. You can find out more about the experiment here: Haul | Boyfriend Picks My Books.

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Christine by Stephen King

Christine

I feel like Christine is one of Stephen Kings most notable novels. Most of the time when someone is talking about Stephen King they mention either The Shining, Christine, or Carrie. I was very excited to get to finally reading Christine and I was not disappointed. He always has a way of making me worried/scared of every day events or objects. I have to say that this is one of my favorites by him, easily a top 3 pick.

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Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen

Herding Cats (Sarah's Scribbles, #3)

I ranted and raved about this book in my review, you can find it here:REVIEW | Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen. I loved this book and if you have not already you should check out her twitter, she is hilarious.

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Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything

I can’t believe I have not picked up this book sooner. I think I was afraid of all the hype surrounding this book when it first came out. I actually didn’t choose this book on my own. I had a bookseller pick out some books for me and this happened to be one of the books she picked. I can see why some people have an issue with this book, but I have to admit that I found parts to be surprising and enjoyable, especially the doodles.  I ended up reading  this book in a single day. If you want to see what else the bookseller picked out for me you can find that here: Haul | Bookseller Picks My Books.

DividerThe Romanovs: 1613-1918 by Simon Sebag Montefiore

The Romanovs: 1613-1918

This is a non-fiction book that explores the Romanov rule of Russia. Now I love Russian history so this was a books I knew I needed to read. If you read into Russian history there are a few moments and stories that you would never hear happening anywhere else. While I do recommend this book I will say it would be a good idea to have a computer or some type of device where you can search some terms and countries, especially early in the book. There is references to countries and groups of people that no longer exist. There are also some Russian words and titles that are used. If you are unfamiliar with Russian history/government it would also be useful to look them up.

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Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Americanah

I felt like this book took me way to long to read even though I was enjoying it. I looked and I started it on February 14th, I was reading it for over a month. I am not sure why, but I had a hard time picking up this book. When I did pick it up I read over 100 pages at a time and really enjoyed it. I have never really had that happen to me before. Regardless, this was a good book and I enjoyed the story a lot.

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Strange Weather by Joe Hill

Strange Weather

Joe Hill is so good at writing short novels. Each one of the novels that is present in this book was very different from one another, but they were all great. They made me think about society and what people are capable of. It also creeped me out quite a bit. Even though these are fiction they are written in a way where they seems very possible. Even though there are four novels in here I read this in a single day. I could not put it down. I HIGHLY recommend this. I think this was my favorite read this month.

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The Dire King by William Ritter

The Dire King (Jackaby, #4)

This is the 4th book in the Jackaby series. If you have read my blog for a while you will know that this is one of my top series, I think only second to Harry Potter. It is described as a mixture of Doctor Who and Sherlock Holmes. It is funny, has adventure, great characters, and a great story line. I can easily say I have not been disappointed by a single book in this series. You really should look into it.

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I am Still Reading

Eleanor Roosevelt: Vol 2, The Defining Years, 1933-38 by Blanche Wiesen Cook

Eleanor Roosevelt: Vol 2, The Defining Years, 1933-38

There is not much to say about this because it is the second book in a trilogy that explores the life of Eleanor Roosevelt. I read volume 1 months ago and finally decided that I would pick up the second. Now, I can already tell that this is going to be an audiobook I am going to rent from the library. Not because it is not good, but because it is very dense and I tend to focus better on these types of books when I am cleaning or working on another “mindless” task. I know, my brain works a little funny sometimes, but all that matters is I figured out what works best for me.

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Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent

Unraveling Oliver

I am currently buddy reading this thriller, I am about 100 pages into it and I am very much enjoying it. It is only about 250 pages, so it is very short. I am very much looking forward to what is going to unfold next.

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The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer by Kate Summerscale

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

This is a non-fiction account of a boy murderer during the victorian era. I am very much enjoying this buddy read. But, be warned if you pick this up there is a lot of background about the time period not just the court case. So if you do not wish to hear about the neighborhood or what stores where in the town at the time you may find this book over detailed and long winded. I find it interesting mainly because I love learning about how people and navigated in their lives as well as the society they lived in.

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What was the best book you read this month?

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Wrap Up

Currently Reading | March 2018

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Hello everyone, March is already halfway through and I am just astonished. Time feels like it is just getting faster and faster. Anyway, I wanted to take this time to share with you the books I am currently reading. I hope you enjoy!

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Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

18302455

Yes, I am still reading this book. It is not because I am no liking it, in fact I am enjoying this book quite a bit. So, when I want to read it I don’t want to be distracted. This leads to there being less reading opportunities.

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Fingerprints of Previous Owners by Rebecca Entel

Fingerprints of Previous Owners

I just started this and I am really loving it so far. If you want to know more about the plot/description you can see that here: March TBR | 2018Divider

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer by Kate Summerscale

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

I am currently buddy reading this book with 3 of my friends. I will not be finishing it this month, but that does not mean I don’t want to. I keep having to force myself not to get ahead of the buddy read. Once again you can check out my March TBR | 2018 for the description.

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What book(s) are you currently reading?

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | # ReadathonByZoe

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So this month I decided to jump in and join the 24 hour readathon that is hosted by Zoe over at readbyzoe. This readathon was a little impromptu, I had not planned to join it until Misty over at mistysbookspace told me about it. I have to say I really love 24 hour readathons they are my favorite. If you know of any others that are coming up, please let me know. Books I Finished

ChristineChristine by Stephen King

Started at 12:00 AM – 1:00 AM, slept then read from again from 8:30 AM to 4:05 PM.

Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run (Death Note, #3)Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run by Tsugumi Ohba

Started 9:10 PM and finished at 10:27 PM.

I am Still Reading

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer by Kate Summerscale

Read 4:05-4:45, finished buddy reading pages X-47.

The Romanovs: 1613-1918

The Romanovs: 1613-1918 by Simon Sebag Montefiore

Started at 10:40 and read until 11:59. I read pages xi-71

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Stats

Books Read: 2

Books Started: 2

Pages Read: 942

Time reading: Roughly 10 hrs min 33 min

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Do you participate in readathons? Which one is your favorite?

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