Unfortunately, I am nursing a wicked headache so there will be only one long reading recap. October featured some travel, excellent reads, and more lessons to be learned by reading.
Finished in October
The Shadow Glass
What I Learned: Perfect Series Enders
I am still not over how perfectly this trilogy ended. Tea’s arc wraps up incredibly, in a way that is appropriate to the story presented so far and a solution that solves most of the problems befalling our characters. Speaking of, my favorites make it to the end, which is always a delight.
Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky
What I Learned: Perfect Theming
Read an ARC I got at ALA AC 2019. Came out October 2019. Mbalia weaves a story of a boy grieving while meeting his heroes in Midpass which has a perforation in its sky. He’s allowed to be scared, but like most boxers, he has plenty of people in his corner. This sense of community carries beautifully through the book.
Read Cover-to-Cover in October
The Grace Year
What I Learned: Feminine Compassion
Read an ARC I got at ALA AC 2019. Came out October 2019. The complexity of femininity presented in this work is truly something to behold. The odds are stacked up against the Grace Year Girls, and I couldn’t help but feel so strongly for them by the end, even the girls who were intentionally written as a little despicable from the outset.
House of Ash and Brimstone
What I Learned: Enemies, Lovers, Tension
Read my NetGalley eARC. Came out in October 2019. The sexual tension between Gigi and Shade was tangible in this paranormal romance. They’re clearly at odds with each other, even as their romance blossoms, and it is a delight to behold.
What I Learned: High School Authenticity
Read my NetGalley eARC. Came out in October 2019. High school is painted with such authenticity in this novel about a girl living with HIV on top of the trappings of teen life: crushes, friendship, drama club, keeping on top of school. It’s all there.
The Library of the Unwritten
What I Learned: An Ode to Stories
Stories take on a literal form in this library in Hell. The way Hackwith weaves what stories mean to people and who gets to tell is done so expertly, with plenty of puns, but steeped in such a love of books as a medium.
What I Learned: Content Warnings
I went into this work expecting something much softer than the work delivered. It would have been nice if the back copy or anything hinted at the drug abuse, difficult home situations, and ideation presented throughout.
What I Learned: Perfect Use of Audio as a Medium
This true crime story of a girl on a mission to avenge her sister’s murder is split between traditional prose and a podcast. The two media blend so well together. Telling in the present and the past is done so cleverly and really needs to be heard to be beheld.
What I Learned: Theology, Horror, and Camp
This book wasn’t the scariest as far as most vaguely eldrich things go. The intricacies of the world of multiple cults hidden within London provide all the fear. What do with god and how to worship them are ideas tackled in this tome, but in a way that provides a really fun plot from start to finish.
Red, White & Royal Blue
What I Learned: Distractions
This book had so much hype going for it. But as much as I enjoyed Alex and Henry’s courtship, the attempts at political commentary and a plot more reminiscent of House of Cards distracted greatly from the romance in a way that simply did not work for me.
For me, November will National Novel Plotting Month, or NaNoPlotMo if you will. Reading is going to happen, as I have another blog interview set up and a recap of my Sirens 2019 panel.