Friday 31 July 2015

July Wrap-Up.

This month's reading once again has been pretty good! I got through a ton of books that I have wanted to read for a while, including a couple that I've waited far too long to get round to! In the end, I managed 5 of the 7 reads I set myself at the start of the month!

  1. 'The Hobbit'; J.R.R. Tolkien. This is the first book that I have read by this world renowned author, and in the end I thought it was pretty okay! However, it did not live up to the masses of hype that surrounded it and so I came out feeling a little disappointed. The characters were interesting, and the world-building certainly world class but it just felt a little too short and the tone was not nearly mature enough for my taste. I hope I enjoy the Lord Of The Rings series better!
  2. 'Sunbolt'; Intisar Khanani. This book completely blew me away simply because while I expected I would enjoy it, I didn't have huge expectations. It more than surpassed my idea of a great book, despite it's very short length, and I can only see this developing into a fantastic series. The characters were phenomenally written and the glimpse of the world of Karolene that I got to see really impressed me. I can't wait to read more when the sequel is released!
  3. 'The Winner's Crime'; Marie Rutkoski. Some of you may remember that I enjoyed but didn't adore the first book in this series. The pacing felt off and I felt like it wasn't explored to it's fullest. This second instalment was considerably better in my opinion! I actually felt masses of sparks between Arin & Kestrel (before, I really didn't feel an awful lot between them). This time, Rutkoski managed to exploit every little moment rather than leaving them feeling unfinished. Despite this, the plot-line at times felt like a series of misunderstandings and secrets that wore thin pretty fast.
  4. 'Valiant'; Holly Black. I feel like this was a month for surprises, and one certainly came in the form of this book. I've read a lot of Holly Black's work in the past (including 'Tithe', the first in the series) and despite adoring her imagination, I have always found her writing style a little too fast paced for me to keep up with a lot of the time. Not so with 'Valiant'. Everything about this book spoke to me: it's originality, complex characters, creative plot situations, and the romance was sizzling too!
  5. 'Neverland'; Shari Arnold. This was my favourite read of the month! Everyone knows I'm a huge fan of Fairy Tales, and Peter Pan is absolutely no exception! I've always been fascinated by the mysterious young boy who never grows up, and the world he lives in: Neverland. This book takes a more emotional yet just as magical twist on the concept. I cried a lot while reading it, yet also found myself laughing too. The characters were imaginative (I loved Arnold's vibrant take on Peter Pan himself and her aloof incarnation of Captain Hook).
This month I have read two physical books:

- 'The Hobbit'
- 'Valiant'

This month I have read three Netgalley/Edelweiss reads:

- 'Sunbolt'
- 'The Winner's Crime'
- 'Neverland'

And now it's time for a quick update on the Bookish Bingo & Story Sprites challenges I signed up for at the beginning of the month!

Cover Has Been Changed: Tithe; Holly Black.
PoC Writer: Sunbolt; Intisar Khanani.
Title Is More Than Three Words: The Storied Life Of A.J. Fikry; Gabrielle Zevin.
Magic: The Hobbit; J.R.R. Tolkien.
Multi POV: How To Fly With Broken Wings; Jane Elson.
Face On Cover: The Winner's Crime; Marie Rutkoski.
Tearjerker: Neverland; Shari Arnold.
Travel: A Natural History Of Dragons; Marie Brennan.
2015 Debut: Skin; Ilka Tampke.
Short Story: The Sleeper & The Spindle; Neil Gaiman.
Finish A Series: Mockingjay; Suzanne Collins.

Fairies As A Theme: Valiant; Holly Black.
Forbidden Romance: The Winner's Crime; Marie Rutkoski.
Cover With Silver Lettering: The Hobbit; J.R.R. Tolkien.
Novel By An Indie Author: Sunbolt; Intisar Khanani.
Fairytale Retelling: Neverland; Shari Arnold.

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