Review Round-Up

I love writing reviews – even if they are sometimes a little rambly – and I love hearing what other people thought of the book I’ve read too, or if my review persuaded you into reading or not reading it!

That said, I often get caught up in reading, writing, reading the next, that I forget what books I have already reviewed, and thus, the reason for this post.

I’m going to gather a few of the reviews I have posted this year, along with short (I really mean short!) summaries. Please feel inclined to read them~

The Cruel Prince – Holly Black

I tore through this whole trilogy earlier in the year. It’s one that you have probably heard of, particularly if you enjoy fantasy or ever go on TikTok, and so I decided to focus my review on whether or not it was worth the hype that it constantly receives.

I did enjoy the series! I definitely have critiques, but it also has really enjoyable characters that pretty much make the story worth it. I’m not going to lie, I don’t think I’ve heard a lot of bad opinions about this series?

More detail, spoiler-free, obvs, in the link.

The Betrayals: Stunning new fiction from the author of the Sunday Times  bestseller THE BINDING: Collins, Bridget: 9780008272166: Books

The Betrayals – Bridget Collins

This was my first review of 2021! I purchased the book on the very last day of last year (or, second to last? :/) and read it not very long after. It is such as interesting book, me trying to summarise it here will absolutely not do it justice!

If you read the author’s first book, you will know she writes atmosphere and character very well, and that’s so important I think when the world the story is within is very new and different to a real world setting.

The Rage of Dragons (The Burning, #1) by Evan Winter

The Rage of Dragons – Evan Winter

This one is a serious must-read for any fantasy fan. The characters are great because they interact with each other so well, and from the very beginning, the unique world building sets the scene for excellent character development. Plus, there’s dragons!

The Invisible Life of Addie Larue: Schwab, V E:  9780765387561: Books

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue – V. E. Schwab

This was a long-awaited book from the author of one of my favourite series. I will admit, I didn’t enjoy it as much as I’d hoped to. The setting of the story and its themes were really nice, and the fairytale-esque genre it falls into is part of the reason myself and so many people liked it.

However, it did feel like it was lacking a little something — whether that’s any character of colour, as Read with Cindy, the only booktuber I watch tbh, most prominently pointed out, or more of an actual plot, as many people pointed out!, I did enjoy the story nonetheless.

5 mini-reviews on books about motherhood

We Need to Talk About Kevin – Lionel Shriver

This is one of the books that remains with you long after you’ve read it, not only for the harrowing subject matter – a boy who commits a school shooting – but the way the story is written, entirely from the perspective of the boy’s mother through a series of extremely personal letters to her husband.

On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous: Vuong, Ocean: 9781787331501:  Books

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous – Ocean Vuong

Constantly one of the most captivatingly lyrical books I’ve read, this charts the story of a young boy’s childhood in the US when he is grown, looking back on his mother and grandmother’s lives as immigrants from Vietnam, their lives across two countries and war.

Little Fires Everywhere: Ng, Celeste: 9780735224292: Books

Little Fires Everywhere – Celeste Ng

As much as this is a ‘slice of life’ book, it packs in so much to a one-year extract from a small town community, giving readers a glimpse about all of the decisions that are afforded to those with and without, and how one’s own conduct towards others can have lasting impacts.

Before the Coffee Gets Cold: Kawaguchi, Toshikazu,  Trousselot, Geoffrey: 9781529029581: Books

Before the Coffee Gets Cold – Toshikazu Kawaguchi

This is a short but poignant story about time travel and second chances, but in a very unique way, as the magic of the time travel is only until your cup of coffee gets cold. It’s a super well thought-out premise with interesting characters.

Dominicana: SHORTLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2020: Cruz, Angie: 9781529304879: Books

Dominicana – Angie Cruz

A story told from the POV of a fifteen-year old girl who is made to move from her home, the Dominican Republic, to the US, this is about so many things at once: family, love, progress and about finding one’s identity, when you are finally allowed to do so.

5 more mini-reviews on funny books

Rivers of London – Ben Aaranovitch

Peter, the protagonist of these stories about a magical underworld in London, is written with a very dry-wit that makes all of his adventures five times more funny, and the author continues to imbue all his characters with humour throughout the series.

Hitman Anders and the Meaning of it All

If you spend most of this book about a heist gone spectacularly wrong and then incredibly right confused, that’s the point! There is a whole variety of delightful characters in this book, and the things they get up to in the aim of bagging a million stolen dollars is increasingly ridiculous (in a good way).

The Cactus – Sarah Haywood

I really didn’t expect the main character of this book, the prickly Susan Green in question, to be as funny as she was. The book isn’t funny, exactly, but you do have to laugh at Susan’s odd ways of thinking and it’s a feel-good story all around.

May We Be Forgiven – A. M. Homes

Very much for fans of dark humour, this story about a bumbling protagonist having to care for his brother’s children after said brother murders his wife is surprisingly touching, about family and kindness.

The Colour Of Magic: (Discworld Novel 1) (Discworld Novels):  Pratchett, Terry: 9780552166591: Books

The Colour of Magic – Terry Pratchett

I mean of course a Discworld book would be funny! This is a great start to the series, in my opinion, with a wonderful storyline and two great characters leading the story who clash in great ways and really introduce a reader to the world.

I have reviewed quite a few more books than I had thought so, looking back! My favourite books among these have to be The Rage of Dragons and probably Little Fires Everywhere — very different, but super engaging, both of them, from start to finish!

Have you read any of these books? Do you plan to?

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