Wednesday, November 2, 2016

October 2016 Wrap-Up

It's time to tell you all about the books I read in October! I read a total of 11 books, and only one of them was a reread. 

My reread was The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde. Since I had reread Jane Eyre last month I decided it was a perfect time to reread this one (for at least the third time). I've said it several times before and I will continue to say it: Jasper Fforde is brilliant and I never tire of his books. They get better every time I read them. 

There were two books that especially stood out to me as new favorites this month: Crosstalk by Connie Willis which I talk more about here and Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi. I read Furthermore during Deweys 24 Hour Readathon and I thought it was a fun middle grade fantasy, definitely some shades of Alice in Wonderland but creative as well and the writing was very beautiful and poetic. 

My most unique read this month was definitely William Shakespeare's Star Wars: Verily, A New Hope by Ian Doescher. If you just read that title and thought 'what the heck?', this book is for you! If you are a fan of Star Wars, this book is for you. Basically, this book is for you. I mean, where else will you get to see R2-D2 beep in iambic pentameter? 

There are certain words and phrases that appear on the covers of books that are guaranteed to catch my interest. "Library of Alexandria" is one of those phrases, and that is what drew me to Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine. This is a young adult alternate history novel which features a world where the great library was never destroyed and is now a controlling force in the government, allowing or restricting access to knowledge. Private ownership of books is forbidden and the black market thrives. Sounds fascinating, right? It was good, I liked it but not to the point that I would read it again. I've decided I need to read the sequel before I make my final judgment so you can look for that in the next few months. 

The next three books all fell very middle of the road for me. They all came from Book of the Month club. They were entertaining but I would not read them again and will probably not keep them on my shelves. 

Enchanted Islands by Allison Amend
I think I like the idea of this book better than I liked the actual book. It is a fictionalized account of the true story of Francis Conway, a woman who, with her husband, went to live on the Galapagos Islands on the eve of World War II. At least, that is how the book is advertised. I found it to be more the story of her life long friendship with her childhood friend Rosalie. It traces their journey from rural Minnesota to Chicago and eventually California. I very much enjoyed the relational aspects of this story and it's emphasis on love and friendship and honesty. I also really enjoyed the account of their time on the island. But there were a few things that seemed very out of place, paragraphs that would jump out at me as seeming not to fit with the flow of the novel. I also really disliked the last 50 pages or so. I felt like the characters did not stay true to themselves and in the end the story wrapped up a little too quickly. 

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
A thriller that wasn't all that thrilling. I did read it straight though but only because it was during the readathon, otherwise it would not have kept me engaged. It was too predictable and the characters too expected. Nothing surprised me or caught me off guard. 

Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel
Disclaimer: I am not well versed in highly technical science fiction, it is most definitely not my forte. I liked the idea of the novel and I thought it started strong but it did not keep my interest beyond the first 100 pages. It is written in an interview format so almost everything is dialogue. I really like the idea of the book and the writing style but in the end it just didn't work for me. It was too dry and I felt the characters lacked depth.  

I'm going to finish off with the children's books I read this month. I've been working my way through the Oz series by L. Frank Baum and I read a bind up of volumes 4-6. As always, these books are fun and interesting and always introduce unique characters as well as bringing back well loved ones. I was excited to see that Dorothy and family are finally permanently lodged in the Emerald city, but what will their next adventure be?

Enid Blyton is an author I was introduced to at a very young age but I have actually read very few of her books. I have been intending to read more so I was excited to start her Malory Towers series. This month I read the first two books, First Term at Malory Towers and Second Form at Malory Towers. I said earlier that there were certain 'trigger' words that make you want to read a book. "Boarding school" is another of those magic phrases. These are fun, sweet books following the adventures of a group of girls. There is nothing spectacular about these, they are just light and clean and uplifting. Very enjoyable. 

Overall, it was a good reading month for me and I'm already excited for the books I will be reading in November! Thanks for reading!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Anne, nothing brilliant to say here in the comment section, just that I like to read your entries. Waiting for the next one!