April Reading Wrap-Up

This is the month in which I finished my dissertation and in the first few days of May, I finished my degree altogether! So, all things considered, I did pretty decently reading-wise this month.

127937¬†The first book I finished this month was The Gladiators from Capua¬†by Caroline Lawrence¬†****.¬†As always, with this series, I really enjoyed the book as it took me on an emotional and educational rollercoaster. This is 100% one of my favourite children’s book series’ and I’ll be preaching that for many years to come! I definitely plan on reading the whole series once I am able to find them in the right covers in paperback and I know I’ll love them.

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The next book I finished in April was The Hazel Wood¬†by Melissa Albert ****, which I had as an eARC from NetGalley (yes I was behind, it is distressing and I’m working on it!). I have a full review of this book on my blog which you can find here¬†but as a short overview, I really enjoyed this read and am looking forward to the sequel.

 

36593157The third book I got to was Magnus and the Jewelled Book of the Universe by S.L. Browne **, which was another eARC thanks to NetGalley. I also have a full review of this book up on the blog, find it here, but the essence of it was that I was disappointed. This book could have been so much more.

 

34530151Book number four for the month was The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas *****, which I was reading as part of a little travelling book club. My review of this book is up on my YouTube channel, and the link to the video is here. This was a very hard-hitting book which made me very angry, very emotional and I recommend it to anyone.

 

437330One book which was a big surprise¬†to me was The Comedy of Errors¬†by William Shakespear¬†****. I like Shakespear. I really didn’t expect to. I bought three mass market paperbacks of his plays as I thought they looked pretty and I decided I should attempt to “make my way” through some of his work. It turns out that both of the two I have read so far have been funny, entertaining, interesting… I really like Shakespear! I was expecting the¬†climax of this to come a little sooner to allow for more time for resolution, however, as a play the timing works well as it is so I just need to get used to reading plays. A fun, quick little play which I didn’t expect to enjoy!

36355075This month was the month I finally finished Other Minds by¬†Peter Godfrey-Smith ****! I haven’t read non-fiction in a very long while, despite it being one of my main genres to read as a child, so I had forgotten that they take me a lot longer to read than fiction books. This was a really interesting book, and the only reason it lost a star was that there were some sections which focused too much on humans. I understand bringing them in for comparison but at certain points, I had forgotten it was an octopus centred book until it mentioned them again. Other than that, this was informative, interesting and something that was very much outside of my comfort zone but that I enjoyed reading!

eggThe last book I finished in April was Davenant’s Egg & Other Tales by Jemahl Evans, *****. If you’ve been following me on this blog for a little bit, you’ll know that I am a huge fan of Jemahl Evans’ work and have been ever since I got his first book. So it’ll be no surprise to any of you that I loved this set of short stories which tie in with the Blandford Candy universe! If you want to see more of my thoughts on this book then click here! If you want to see my thoughts on The Last Roundhead (book 1) then click here, and This Deceitful Light (book 2) then click here!

I wasn’t able to get to Ink or Rebel in the Sands this month. Mainly because I was so focused on my University work, it meant I didn’t want to spend too much time reading and also I wasn’t out and about much, meaning the Kindle (where Rebel in the Sands is) wasn’t used as much. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to get to them in May, fingers crossed!

Considering that I have had one of the most important months of my educational life, I think I’ve done pretty well reading 7 books in April along with getting all of my assignments done. Now I have finished my degree I’m hoping I’ll be able to read some more in May and catch up a bit with some books I should have gotten to!

Stay tuned for my May tbr, which will go up soon!!

The Hazel Wood

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As a lot of you reading this will know, this book received a lot of hype in the book world online. I don’t know if this is because of the premise of the book, the various beautiful covers, or if the publishers just did a really good job of marketing! I would like to say thank you to NetGalley for the free eARC of this book in return for an unbiased review.

This book follows Alice as she tells us about her life, we are sped through her younger years on the road with her mum Ella, essentially being homeless, until they end up stationary, finally, in New York. But Alice is noticing some weird things happening around her, and they’re resurfacing memories that she had subconsciously¬†pushed deep down. This is when things start getting… weird.

I won’t be saying any more in order to keep this spoiler free, but I really liked the way the book progressed from this point. There is a strong and frequently mentioned link to fairy tales and when this fully gets underway it’s incredibly gripping and engrossing. I enjoyed the twists and turns and discovering the details as Alice does, and I absolutely loved the end half of the book! But… the very end was a bit… eh…

I feel bad for saying that, after such an amazing book all the way through, but the wrap up of this story felt rushed, incomplete, unsatisfying, and as if Melissa Albert didn’t know how to end the story. It could’ve been so much better if there had just been a bit more tweaking of this section. There is going to be a sequel which is expected to be published in 2019, and I am sure I’m going to pick it up as I need more of this world and to learn more about Alice, Ella and the Hinterland. I just really hope Melissa Albert improves on how she ends books, and that her editors help her along with this because this could have been a five-star book. As it is, it was a very enjoyable 4-star read and I am looking forward to finding out more about the world (if it’s possible with the ending we got…).