Mrs Death Misses Death by Salena Godden is part poetry, part novel. We follow our protagonist named Wolf, who is seemingly possessed by Mrs Death and is writing down the story of her life. We also learn about monumental deaths that are in the British public eye, and personal deaths to Wolf and how they all have an impact.
I was quite excited for this one, considering the content, and so when Olivia-Savannah was unhauling the book and offered it to me, I of course said yes. I understand now why she unhauled the book, but I won’t be unhauling it yet myself. I’d like to give it another shot.
Unfortunately, the book didn’t seem quite finished. Like it could have done with another round of editing? It just felt a little messy, a little unpolished, when instead it could’ve been tight and well constructed.
Despite that, the book did have a lot of important messages within it, and some beautiful methods of delivery through gorgeous quotations and beautiful prose. There were a lot of discussions of high profile deaths in the UK and the impact they had on the public, as well as more personal, individual deaths. These discussions were tactful and respectful of the families who lost loved ones, whilst still broaching the topic of death.
On CAWPILE I rated this: Characters: 6, Atmosphere: 8, Writing: 5, Plot: 6, Intrigue: 6, Logic: 5, and Enjoyment: 6 which gave an average of 6 and a 3.5* rating.
Highlight here for trigger warnings: death, suicidal thoughts, death of a parent, grief, murder, child death, domestic and emotional abuse, sexual assault, fire, racism.
I do want to reread this book, to spend more time with it. I feel like I could get more out of it than I have on the first pass through. However, given recent events of a bereavement in my family I don’t think I’ll be rereading this any time soon.
So on my BookTube channel I’ve been doing quarterly hauls, but after January I stopped hauling books on this blog and now I’m behind! Feel free to check them out in video or written format!!
Let’s start with the books I got in the first quarter of 2021.
As I mentioned in my January haul post I got 3 books in January. No Place to Hide by Glenn Greenwald and Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood were both books I picked up from the little free book selection in my office before I moved to working from home. I’m curious about the Edward Snowdon situation, and I’ve only read the Handmaid’s duology by Atwood so I thought it was worth adding more from her to my shelves! The third book was an ebook of A Wish After Midnight by Zetta Elliot that me and Caitlyn (from Mad Cheshire Rabbit) picked up for the Small Press Book Club and we both loved!
Moving on to February, my pre-order of The Mask Falling by Samantha Shannon came in and Oh. My. God was I excited!!! This is one of my absolute favourite series and as expected I absolutely adored the next instalment! The only other book that I bought in February was The Dawn Chorus by Samantha Shannon which is the 3.5 novella within the Bone Season series, as I wanted to pick that up before I got into the 4th book. This is only available as an ebook in English so this was a kindle purchase and I absolutely flew through it! Despite that being the last book I bought in February I did get 3 more books. Two were from Caitlyn, as she sent me Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and also Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte because they’re her favourite books and she knows that the fastest way to get me to read something is to put it on my tbr… the wee shite 🤣 and the final book was Apocalypse Kings by Derek Landy which my boyfriend gifted to me! I asked him to grab me it because the book was only £1 and I didn’t want to pay the shipping after I couldn’t find it in a nearby irl shop (and he has Amazon Prime) and he wouldn’t let me pay him back. So it was a gift!
And for the final month of the first quarter we have March! 5 books came into my home this month! The only one purchased by me was The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald: Diglot which is an “invention” by a new Irish company (Diglot) which sprinkles words of your target language through a classic work and gets more difficult as the book goes on. I read the German version of this and I enjoyed it! I’ll have a full review up in the future! And it is also the whole story of The Great Gatsby. Gifted to me by the wonderful Veronica from Veronica’s Shelf were All Systems Red by Martha Wells which is a fantastic sci-fi novella, and The Brother’s Lionheart by Astrid Lindgren which she gifted to me after I enjoyed a short story by the Swedish author (Veronica is Swedish too!). I’m really excited to read Lionheart! Lastly were the second two books in the A Darker Shade of Magic series by V.E. Schwab, A Gathering of Shadows and A Conjuring of Light which were gifted to me by the lovely Eleanor from Eleanor Nicbahtair as she was unhauling the books and I joked about wishing I lived closer so I could take them. So she posted them to me! And I am so so grateful!!
And that’s the end of the first quarter! 13 books ain’t bad! Now onto the haul in the second quarter! Again, if you’d like to check out the video version, it’s below for your viewing pleasure 😂
Starting off with April, I got 4 books. The one bought by me was my pre-order of Dead or Alive by Derek Landy, the latest Skulduggery Pleasant novel. Of course I had this one pre-ordered! It’s the purple one you can see in the thumbnail above, and as you might be able to see by the tabs I’ve read the book already and loved it! I adore this series! Then the amazing Kari from Kari-ng for books sent me Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse and also A Song of Wraiths and Ruin by Roseanne A Brown because not only does she know that I’m really leaning into fantasy books nowadays, but she also knows that I’m aiming to diversify my shelves so Roanhorse is Indigenous to North America, and Brown is a Black author. I’ve also heard fantastic things about both of these books, meaning that for some stupid reason I’m putting the books off cause I know that I’m going to love them! Stupid I know but shhhhh. And finally for April Olivia Savannah from Olivia’s Catastrophe gifted me Pet by Akwaeke Emezi. This came with the most wonderful and lovely note and it’s an amazing book. I’ve read this one already and I adored every second of it. I really recommend!
May was a nice small month. One book that I pre-ordered myself and that’s The Skulduggery Pleasant Grimoire by Derek Landy, which I wasn’t expecting so soon after Dead or Alive! I’ve finished this one too, and I do have some issues with it, but I can’t lie this was so much fun and I adored the story that ran throughout!
Now for June. June june june. I had thought that I wouldn’t be getting any books in June. I said it when I filmed the first half of that video. I JINXED MYSELF!!! I filmed that on the Saturday, and on the Tuesday a LITERAL BOX OF BOOKS ARRIVED AT MY HOUSE!!! My wonderful uncle decided to send me some books and I’m so so grateful! One that he sent me was a bright blue covered The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis which he said he thought would look good on my bookstagram, and guys? He’s totally right. I have an AMAZING bookstagram photo coming up with this book! He also gave me 4 books I had never heard of before. The Tenderloin by John Butler and Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin are both contemporary historical novels set in San Francisco, around 20 years apart. I don’t read much contemporary so those will be really interesting to dive into. And last from my uncle were Foundation by Mercedes Lackey, and Sourcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho which both sound right up my streets as fantasy reads! These two, I can’t lie, I’m more excited for and I can’t wait to give them a shot! They sound so interesing!!
My uncle runs an amazing instagram page, @onthisgayday which posts something from LGBTQ+ history each and every day. He’s put so much research into that page so I really do recommend checking it out to learn more about LGBTQ+ history!
And the final book was a gift from my lovely partner. I had looked for The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton when it was in Sainsbury’s and my local shop didn’t have it. But his did! So he grabbed it for me and isn’t he just a cutie! I really enjoyed The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle so I’m excited to read some more from this author.
And those are all of my books I’ve gotten in the first half of 2021! A whopping 24 books have came into my house so far this year, 6 of those I’ve spent money on, 11 I’ve read, and the rest I’m super excited for! This was a LONG post! I definitely need to make sure to keep up with these in the future 😂 maybe I’ll do them monthly here on my blog. I wonder if I’ll get any in July!!
Let me know the books that you’ve bought and you’ve hauled so far in 2021! Not that I need any more recommendations but give them to me anyways!
Is it good or bad that I brought 2 books into my home this month? On the one hand, it’s only two books! On the other? I’m supposed to be getting through my tbr shelves, not adding to them!! I couldn’t resist these books though, I found them in the selection of free books at work and given that I moved to working from home in the middle of January (thank god) I needed to grab these and take them with me when I shifted home!
First up is Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood. I’ve only ever read The Handmaid’s Tale and The Testaments by Atwood so I would like to branch out to some of her other works. This seems to be a fictionalised account of a real life tale, following a woman who is believed to have committed murder, but the reality may be more complicated than that. A historical fiction set in Canada, I’m really interested in seeing how Atwood takes this story and interweaves truth and fiction, as well as how this stacks up against the facts that we know about the case.
Secondly is No Place to Hide by Glenn Greenwald. This is a non-fiction work, written by the journalist who published Edward Snowden’s reports gleaned from classified documents. This book starts with Snowden and Greenwald first communicating, it talks about the NSA, and it examines the far reaches of the US government’s surveillance programme, far outside the boundaries of its borders. Whilst I’m not an American, Snowden’s reports were still widely reported in the UK and I didn’t follow them too closely at the time. A mixture of my change in interests and being busy with education. But I’m definitely interested in reading about this now and fingers crossed the book will be interesting!
And those are the two books I grabbed from the pile! There were many more books there but most weren’t the sort I would enjoy and I was trying to not be stupid with the books I was taking! Have you heard of or read either of these? Let me know what you think of them! And let me know which books you brought into your life in January!