Five books this week (29th August – 4th September)! Unpopular opinion alert about Our Chemical Hearts – I have only seen good things online, but I was sorely disappointed!!! Other than that, I adored my reread of Illuminae, loved Six of Crows so much (swashbuckling teams of vagabonds and spies are now firmly cemented as one of my favourite tropes!), and was inspired by Very Good Lives. The beautiful illustrations in The Girl of Ink and Stars made me super happy! Overall a good week. Grab any of these books for your own shelves at Booktopia!
Our Chemical Hearts – Krystal Sutherland (Australian author) (1 star)
It took me a loooonnnnggg time to read this book. In direct contrast to the glowing reviews it has all over the internet, I strongly disliked it. It read like an incredibly crappy John Green novel. Despite being written by an Australian author, the book is set in the US and the only Aussie character was a total stereotype who really really grated on me. There were also problems with the representation of a character with health issues – both physical and emotional. The circumstances surrounding this book have made me angry – it has been sold into America, and the marketing efforts for it worldwide have been phenomenal, but this is NOT how Australian YA should be represented to the world. There are so many better examples out there, and I am disappointed that THIS is the book with so much attention.
Very Good Lives – J. K. Rowling (5 stars)
I finally bought myself a copy of J K Rowling’s Very Good Lives, the physical version of her commencement speech at Harvard University. It was just as gorgeous and life affirming as you can expect from the amazing woman who gave the world Harry Potter.
Six of Crows – Leigh Bardugo (5 stars)
This was one of those amazing swashbuckling stories about a band of vagabonds and spies. I loved every member of the team, and was constantly concerned for their wellbeing. I am so glad I waited until its sequel’s release to read Six of Crows – I don’t think I could have waited any longer than a few short months without severe panic for my fictional friends! Perfect for fans of The Lies of Locke Lamora.
Illuminae – Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (Australian authors) (5 stars)
A colleague won an elusive ARC of Gemina at the YAFanFest event, and she was lovely enough to offer to lend it around the office. But of course, I had to reread Illuminae! I didn’t think it was possible, but I think I enjoyed it EVEN MORE the second time around!
The Girl of Ink and Stars – Kiran Millwood Hargrave (4 stars)
This book is visually stunning. Each page features orange and blue map elements, the perfect touch for a book about a mapmaker’s daughter. When her best friend disappears, Isabella is determined to join the search party. However, the governor has banned exploration amongst the people, and thus the search party is blind. It is a captivating story blurring the line between reality and fantasy. A very sweet book which reminded me of Nightfall by Jake Halpern, which I read back in June.
What have you been reading?