So it’s been more than 10 days since you last had a post from me, I’m sorry! Honestly I got really reading slumpy as well as just not that great overall, so I took some time away from work and from the bookish world and I’m doing a lot better for it. But I’m back with my October wrap up so let’s dive straight in!
I read very little this month, 2394 pages total but only finishing five books. Although I did read most of a few other books, those are carrying over to November (or as I’m calling it October Part 2) so they’ll be mentioned there.
First up? I finished Babel by R.F. Kuang! This was just the final 93 pages of the book that I finished up on the 1st October. I loved this book so much. It is a gorgeous dark academia set in 1800s Oxford that tackles racism, colonialism, the British empire and so much more. It’s heart wrenching, and despite being a very slow read (something I usually really don’t like) I found myself wanting more when I reached the final pages. It’s beautifully done and personally I think it deserves all the hype.
Next is The Imagination Chamber by Philip Pullman, one of my birthday books I was gifted (thank you Renette!) that is only 87 pages, and I needed a win so I thought why not! It’s a very quick read as it’s simply collections of Pullman’s extra ideas for scenes and character development within the world of His Dark Material’s and The Book of Dust. I enjoyed it a lot and I’m even more excited about the final book in the Book of Dust trilogy!
Then I read The Man Who Planted Trees by Jean Giono, another birthday book (this time thanks go to Caitlyn!) that I picked up this month for a similar reason, it clocks at 42 pages. This one is an environmental read that is a gorgeous little ode to Mother Earth and I’m so glad I read it.
Then, the first book that I was actually on my tbr for this month, The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna. Five star read this book is amazing! This is a YA dystopian written by a Nigerian author that follows young women who are marginalised for having the “wrong” colour blood. Gold. This book dives deep into identity, misogyny, and so much more. It’s an absolutely beautiful work and I’m so excited to read the second book next year!
And finally, the book that gave me no end of trouble. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett. I buddy read this with Kari, and without her I wouldn’t have gotten through this book! It’s a rough read. The final 250 pages I actually found mildly enjoyable, but considering this book is over 1000 pages long… that’s not exactly a glowing recommendation. This is a book that I recommend everyone reading the triggers for, but especially sexual assault and rape. I usually “hide” trigger warnings because I consider them spoilers, but it’s so severe in this book that I would be doing you a disservice if I hide those. On top of this, this book truly is just one huge essay on cathedral building with some historical fiction Follett decided to slide in. With this being such a behemoth to get through (both in page count and in content) it ground my reading to a halt. I wont’ be picking up any more Follett for a little while!
In the exact opposite of this… I got a ridiculous number of books in October because it was my birthday! I’m so grateful to everyone for all of these books, and very glad that I’m not doing balancing the books this month 😅.
What was your best read this month? For me it was The Gilded Ones, that book is absolutely fantastic and I highly recommend it!