Quarterly Reading Wrap Up (April, May, & June 2019)

In the second quarter of the year, (April, May, and June) I read 7 books so an average of two books a month, even though I didn’t finish a book in April. Here are the books I read (See my rating system at the end of this post):

Educated by Tara Westover – ♥♥
It was okay because the writing seemed a little scattered like she was writing as she was remembering it. Tara’s childhood was unbelievable, to say the least, but I didn’t feel any connection with it so it was hard to decide on a rating.

“It’s strange how you give the people you love so much power over you.”
― Tara Westover, Educated

Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy – ♥♥♥♥
It was well written and was able to relate to the main character, Willowdean, as well as her relationship with her mom. Enjoyed the Netflix adaptation also.

“All my life I’ve had a body worth commenting on and if living in my skin has taught me anything it’s that if it’s not your body, it’s not yours to comment on.”
― Julie Murphy, Dumplin’

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han and the continuation P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han – ♥♥♥♥ (both books)
Well-written and funny with believable characters like Lara Jean and Kitty. A story well told.

“When you lose someone and it still hurts, that’s when you know the love was real.”
― Jenny Han, P.S. I Still Love You

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
♥♥♥
I really liked the language of the writing, it was very well written. This is the second book that I’ve read from Ng and I think I like Everything I Never Told You a little better. I thought Little Fire Everywhere might get confusing but the story was well written and resolved nicely.

“Anger is fear’s bodyguard.”
 Celeste Ng, Little Fires Everywhere

What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? By Peter Hedges
♥♥♥♥
I really liked reading this book. It was funny and at times inappropriately funny. I found myself chuckling at things that maybe I should. It is a slice-of-life story about a small town young man named Gilbert Grape. This book is my jam. It’s melancholic yet amusing and this quote describes it perfectly.

“You can tell the idyllic nature of a family by the upkeep of its picnic table. Ours is its own indictment. We are splintering and peeling. We rot.”
― Peter Hedges, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape

Emergency Contact by Mary H. K. Choi
♥♥♥
I liked this book and thought it was a well-written and witty novel. It’s a great book for teens and college-aged people to relate to but being older I still was able to appreciate it.

“Fiction was fine, but real life was the true freak show.”
― Mary H.K. Choi, Emergency Contact

My rating system. Nothing fancy here, it’s the same as Goodreads.
♥ – I didn’t like it
♥♥ – It was okay
♥♥♥ – I liked it
♥♥♥♥ – I really liked it
♥♥♥♥♥ – I loved it

Thank you for reading!
Nora

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Ruin and Rising – Book Review

ruin-and-rising
Recently, I finished reading Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo. It is the last book of the Grishaverse trilogy. It’s a young adult fantasy book about Alina and her goal to overthrow the Darkling and make Ravka whole again. In general, I think that this last book tied everything nicely but had a few surprises. I’m glad I read this series because it gave me a bit of a background to the Grishaverse even though Bardugo’s writing has improved greatly ever since. I think her strong suit is writing villains and morally gray characters because I didn’t care that much about Alina or Mal. They were just orphans but Nikolai and the Darkling had these rich pasts. Speaking of Nikolai, I have purchased King of Scars and hope to get to it in the next few months.

My rating: 3/5 stars

Have you read Ruin and Rising? If so, what did you think?

The Paying Guests – Book Review

Paying-GuestsI finished reading The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters, a historical gothic fiction about Frances Wray, who accepts lodgers into her home that she shares with her mother. Although meticulously detailed in descriptions, it did tend to drag on in quite a few places. This bothered me more towards the end and it was really annoying waiting for the other shoe to drop especially when the shoe finally did drop, it was very unsatisfying. I also felt that there wasn’t that much chemistry between the main relationship and it felt like instalove. I think it would do good with some serious editing. Also, I consumed this on audiobook going to and from work and if I didn’t, I don’t think I would’ve made it through.

My rating: 3/5 stars

Have you read The Paying Guests? If so, what are your thoughts?

Siege and Storm – Book Review

Siege-and-StormLast week I finished reading Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo, the second book in the Grishaverse Trilogy. We finally get to meet Nikolai, whom everyone has been talking about and I’m sorry to admit, but he was the most exciting thing about the book. Maybe I’m not the target audience for this series. I was more interested in the characters and there’s some great dialogue, some quotable quotes. But I feel like the villain, The Darkling, and Nikolai shine brightest for me in the series. Alina and Mal aren’t that vivid to me and I’m not that interested in them but I have already started the last book, Ruin and Rising.

My rating: 3/5 stars

Have you read Siege and Storm? What did you think?

Top 5 Classic Books

Lately, I haven’t been reading too many classics. I feel like I have to be in the right headspace to enjoy them. It’s been some time since I’ve read these but I always think about them and someday I would like to reread them. Here are my top 5 favorite classic books.

1) 1984 by George Orwell. One of my all-time favorite books that I believe everyone should read because it’s very relevant even today.

2) Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery. I still have this whole series and it’s one of those books that I’ve loved since I was young.

3) To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Another book that is still relevant today. Another all-time favorite book.

4) The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Great well-written little adventure book, perfect for all ages.

5) Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë. This one gets up there with the hard to understand language but it’s still one of my favorite classics.

What are some of your all-time favorite classic books?