October is traditionally the month that fall really hits with the days getting shorter and the reading time cosier. For me, it begins a period of more reading, but it was also the month I vowed to take my physical exercise more seriously and spent two days a week dying during CrossFit. Somehow though, I still managed to read 13 books (YEAHHHHSSSS). Wondering what I thought of all those books? Here we go…
The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White
After finishing her The Conqueror’s Saga, I promised myself to keep an eye out for all the books White is going to release in the future. This story about Elizabeth Frankenstein, wife of the very famous Dr. Frankenstein, immediately caught my attention and I just had to preorder it. That premise looked so freaking good! White’s story happens in the white-spaces of Shelley’s original book and they both fit together seamlessly. I loved how Elizabeth wasn’t a goody two-shoes and how she’s only focused on improving her destiny. Perfect Halloween read!
The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
First reread for my fourth list of series I need to finish, and immediately the reread I’m most excited about. I have always loved Riordan’s books and I knew I was going to fall into an old favorite. I immediately realized I’m an absolute fool for not reading any of Riordan’s other books. An epic adventure story, so funny I actually laughed out loud multiple times and filled with historical myths so you actually learn something along the way? How can you not love that? All I want to do is plow through the whole series, but I’m going to try to pace myself.
The Cheerleaders by Kara Thomas
The premise immediately caught my eye, and I couldn’t pass it up. I may have developed a love for dark YA mysteries and the idea behind this story just tickled my fancy. Four cheerleaders of the same highschool died mysteriously? Sign me up! The mystery absolutely intrigued me and I had so much fun trying to figure out what was going on. It kept me at the edge of my seat and I never expected that conclusion, but it fitted perfectly. Dark and gritty is my flavor y’all! This is definitely a great read to curl up with the coming long evenings.
Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu
(Proof received for free, this does not affect my opinion.) I’ve already learned that Mathieu is an uncontested feminist queen after reading Moxie and The Truth About Alice, but I didn’t really know what I could expect about this book. Mathieu could have ended up writing a book that was very difficult to take, but instead she managed to explain the horrors without you feeling sick to your stomach. In the end, I got a powerful coming-of-age with a main character who has an unique voice and story to tell.
Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch
In November, I’m joining a new young adult book club that’s starting and this is their very first pick. Now, I’ve seen this book around the blogosphere of course, but never touched it as I KNEW this wasn’t going to be a book for me. And well, let’s just say it’s mighty satisfying when I’m right in these kind of cases. The story was a little too original to be a guilty-pleasure cute romcom, but a little too cliche to be unique. It tried to walk a tightrope that just didn’t work for me, and I’m just glad the thing is done and I finished it. This is going to be a fun book club gathering. (*evil smile*)
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling
Even though I am a massive Harry Potter fan and proud member of the Harry Potter generation who grew up with these books, I haven’t felt any urge to buy one of the rereleases of the books. I hold my old Dutch copies near and dear, and I won’t ever let them go. That being said, that doesn’t mean that I’m not tempted to get my hands on these beautiful illustrated editions. It turned the story I know so well into a precious treat and I loved slowly reading and seeing the drawings, one chapter at a time. These books are going to be a beautiful addition to my bookshelves.
Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu
After reading the short description, I couldn’t wait to read this book! Even got the first book in this “series” before reading this one. Set in prison with mentally disturbed criminals? GIVE IT TO ME. Unfortunately… after reading it… please take it away asap. This Batman origin story is exactly what you expect, nothing more, nothing less. There was nothing original to it and it truly bored me at a certain point. It was way too short to have any depth, and so predictable it was ridiculous. These books are proving to not be my cup of tea.
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Another series that’s on my series I need to finish list. I read this book years ago for the first time, but didn’t remember a lot of specifics. First off, I know this book is already a little older, but I’m mighty tired of the special snowflake trope. Add to that the fact that there is literally only one girl (yeah yeah, I know, it’s sort of the point BUT STILL) and I’m already annoyed from the outset. I also can’t help but wonder about the plot holes I seemed to keep encountering, they bugged me. Still, I am intrigued with that ending… we’ll see what book two brings.
The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan
I was so excited to have Percy Jackson back in this story and to meet two brand-new characters, but I quickly missed the characters of book one. I can’t wait to have them all together in the next book!!! Anyway, Riordan’s cocktail of adventure, humor and myths, continued of course in this book and it was finger-licking good yet again. I LOVED how we got to know the Roman camp in this one, so awesome that Riordan incorporated it in so much detail. But as I said, I’m ready for book three and to have all our heroes together. It’s going to be the best ride ever!
The Perfectionists by Sara Shepard
When I could get my hands on this book for about 2 euro, there was no way I was going to pass up on that opportunity. However, I quickly learned that this book was not living up to its premise. The characters were flat and even though they all had their “troubles”, it was all so very cliche and predictable. The mystery lost its sparkle soon and just became annoying. Especially when the book ended without an actual conclusion. The absolute worst part however is that it was basically a rehash of the Pretty Little Liars story. I knew that one already, I did not want to read it again.
What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli & Adam Silvera
With some books you know from the outset that you’re going to love it, and this was one of those books for me. I was curious to see how Albertalli, the queen of fairy-tale-like love stories, and Silvera, the king of stories that emotionally destroy you, would work together, but I knew the result was going to be amazing. And it was. It was so much fun to immediately know which character was whose, and to see them develop throughout the novel. I fell hard and deep into this ship and I couldn’t stop reading until I knew how it ended. What a ride.
This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada
(Proof received for free, this does not affect my opinion.) This was a reread in preparation of the release of its sequel. I ADORED this book when I first read it, and I had no doubt in my mind that it would stay strong during my reread. I am so devastated that this book isn’t more known in the YA book world, as it is an absolute gem. Not only does it turn cliches in YA and the sci-fi genre upside-down, it also filled with twists and with the most realistic science. I can’t wait to get my hands on book two.
Bookshop Girl by Chloe Coles
When I came across the premised of this book, I was immediately intrigued and I wanted so to love this book, but it fell extremely short. I could easily see what Coles wanted to do: bring a girl’s love for books to the forefront, add some important feminist themes and sprinkle a love interest over it all. Unfortunately, it read like a first draft and not a finished book. The themes are not worked out properly and nor turned into a compelling story. The ending did manage to bring it all together and bring an actually story, but as we say in Dutch, the calf had already drowned. It was too late to save anything.
What do you think of all the books I read this month? Are there any on this list you’d like to read too? Let me know in the comments!