I remember this being big on Booktok last summer and how many men did not like it and and that just made it more interesting to me. After starting this, I feel like this is also up Kate’s alley too.
Author Archives: bethlylou
What I’m Reading Now: Chain of Thorns by Cassandra Clare
Truth be told I’m actually almost finish with this one. I’ve just been bad at posting.
Quick Review: Blood Scion by Deborah Falaye
Sloane is a scion in a world that has tried to erase them. She has powers believe to come from one of her people’s Gods but all traces of their heritage have been all but erased by a Colonial like authoritarian regime that has taken over her country. To make matters worst she has been drafted into a child’s army in service of her oppressors. She has to hide who she is while trying to survive basic training. This book is not for the faint of heart. It does have a trigger warning because the topics of Child Army, sexual assault and violence and doesn’t shy aware from any of these things. The very first chapter there is an attempted Rape. The death count in this novel is very high. Al I can say is don’t get too attached to any characters. As a hard of a read to get through, I found myself spellbound by it. I had to know what Sloane was going to do next and hope that things would work out for her. Well, that’s yet to pan out and this is only the first book in the series. I didn’t know that when I started it. The sequel can not come out soon enough.
Quick Review: Hell Bent by Leigh Bardugo
Hell Bent picks up a few months after the end of The Ninth House. Alex is still looking for Darlington who is still somewhere on the other side. Alex and Dawes will do anything to get him back but of course nothing goes right. To complicate things even more, Alex is also dealing with the consequences of the past and juggling both at the same time. I like this series . It’s dark and crazy and never goes where you think it will. Alex is so smart. Her life experience is so different from everyone else in Yale and is why she is underrated but also why she ultimately succeeds because she’s a survivor. I liked that. I am sorry that as a character has had to go through so much trauma but I can’t help but admire her ability to think her way out of a situation. To fight with all that she has and how to bring people together. She may not be the most ethical but she knows how to get things done. So yeah this is a great series and I’m looking forward finding out how it will end.
What I’m Reading Now: Blood Scion by Deborah Falaye
I bought this book on a whim and so far it has been very good. Brutal but good.
Review: Legendborn and Bloodmarked by Tracy Deonn
What can I say about this series that the internet hasn’t already said? It’s great! Amazing! Spellbinding! I truly love it and there better be a third novel. I read that it was conceived as trilogy but I have yet to read any announcement of when the next book will be released. So crosses fingers!
Bree has just lost her mother in a car accident and is grieving in when her and her best friend, Alice start classes at Early college program at University of North Carolina. Bree immediately starts noticing strange things around campus and can’t help but think it might be connected to her mother’s death. With the help of Nicolas, the boy who is supposed to mentor her, work together to infiltrate a secret society based around King Arthur and Round Table and well things are more than what she bargained for.
This novel not only goes into the myth of Arthur but also the brutal of history of slavery and racism. This may be 21st century America but the legacy of Slavery is still far too close to us. Bree does what she has to do to fit in and has the right heritage but will never be fully accepted because of the color of her skin. It’s a complicated history that I can never do justice here. The other major theme of this series is Grief and generational trauma. Which seems to be a trend among popular media these days but that’s another essay. We begin the series with Bree being angry about her mother’s death and needs someone to blame for it and the society with all it’s money and trappings is the perfect target. She’s not entirely wrong for blaming them but not for the reason she thinks. This is really her journey to get herself through the trauma of it and coming out the other side. I highly recommend it for all fantasy fans looking for a new take a old story because it is a quite a ride.
What I’m Reading Now: Hell Bent by Leigh Bardugo
I’m really digging the creepy vibes of the cover.
Beth’s Favorite Books of 2022!!!
It’s that time of the year again. Where we all look back and reflect on the past year and everything we read and take stock in all the good books and stories. In 2022, I read 43 books. 8 books more than last year. So reading wise, I think this year was successful. Looking over my books from this year I would say there was a theme and it was fantasy novels lead by female characters. I really leaned into that this year. So without further ado, here are some of my favorite books that I read in 2022 in no particularly order. I’m going to do this list in the order of which I read them.
- Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth – There are so many books that feature children or young adults who are charged with saving the world from Percy Jackson to Harry Potter but what happens when they succeed and grow up. Chosen Ones is just that. A group of 6 ones saved the world 10 years ago but the trauma of that time is still with them despite the fame that came with it. Tragedy strikes and they are all the evil they thought they rid themselves is back. It was just great. They all handled their shared experience and I think that’s important to explore because we all process trauma and grief differently and I don’t think we all appreciate that.
- Sort of Super by Eric Gapstur – Yes, this was written by a friend but even if it wasn’t I would have loved it. It such a joyful story of a young boy and his sister learning about their new super powers. The artwork is so vibrant and colorful that really makes the story pop of the page. I can’t wait to read the next adventure.
- A LIttle Too Familiar by Lish Mcbride – This was the perfect palette cleanser for whatever ails you. It was a sweet and wholesome romance novel between a witch who pairs people to their familiar animals and a werewolf. A little on the spicy side but just so amazing. If you haven’t read any of Lish Mcbride’s book this one is a good one to start with or her Necromancer series.
- The Priory and the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon – Everything you could ever want from a high fantasy novel. A quest, romance, magic and dragons. I will admit the sapphic love story in the center of the story could have a few more scenes but a minor complaint to an almost perfect story.
- The Sandman by Neil Gaiman – I maybe a bit late to this one but I loved characters and stories. The little vignettes in between the major story arcs. I listened to the audio presentation, so the voice work of James McAvoy and Kat Dennings among others might have something to do with how much I loved it but it was so great. I haven’t finished the series yet but I can’t wait to listen to Act 3.
- The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina by Zoraida Cordova – You can be forgiven if you read this and immediately thought of Encanto. They both use magical realism to tell the story of family trauma but this takes it so much farther than Encanto could. For one it’s not a Disney Movie. The Divina family are a magical family that is both blessed and cursed and Orquidea’s grandchildren must resolve the her past for them to move forward. So beautifully done.
- The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang – A mix of history and magic that explores the harsh realities of colonialism, race and war. There is no winners but only losers when it comes to all of these legacy and R.F. Kuang doesn’t let up in here commentary. It is not an easy read but so worth it.
- Greywaren by Maggie Stiefvater – The Dreamers Trilogy and the Raven Cycle comes to an end with this satisfying final novel. The Lynch brothers learn to be brothers again and save the world. Hennessy found peace in herself and Jordan got to live her life. I am sad that the end to this series but characters like this will live forever.
- Legendborn by Tracy Deonn – I just finished this book but this was great. A new twist on the Arthurian legend. The Round table never disbanded but the ancestors of the legendary knights still fight demons from another realm. Bree has just lost her mother and to find answers she joins a new club to only be discover so much more. This book tackles more than just myths but racism and slavery and how as much as we think we are beyond it but how it still is very much apart of us. I have already started the next book in the series.
So that’s it Those are my favorite books I read this year. What were your favorite books? Leave them in the comments and maybe I’ll add them to my list for 2023.
What I’m Reading Now: BloodMarked by Tracy Deonn
BookTok has right. Legendborn was amazing. I had to immediately go out to get the sequel.
What I’m Reading Now: Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
I’ve been hearing such good things about this book so I’m excited. Also this one of my purchases from NYCC this year.