Eight books this week, though one was a Little Black Classic, so I’m not sure how much weight it carries as a book… The first three had been sitting on my TBR for months and months, as had Wheel of Osheim, but I read this one now because Mark Lawrence’s new book, Red Sister, comes out soon! I loved Brian Selznick’s The Marvels, just as I have loved all of his books, and it was amazing to get my hands on Patrick Ness’ new book, Release. I am disappointed that NONE of the books this week were by Aussie authors. I will do better next week. Grab any of them for yourselves at Booktopia!
Nothing Tastes As Good – Claire Hennessy (3 stars)
An interesting story about being a young girl in the modern world. Annabel is a spirit, assigned to help a particular person before she can move on. Julia, Annabel’s assignment, is fat. So it’s obvious what Annabel has to help her with – being fat makes you unhappy, right? But it isn’t so clearcut, and Annabel has a lot to learn, as does Julia. There were some moments which made me nauseous as the book described what young women afflicted with anorexia think and the actions they take. It was insightful for a number of issues, and I enjoyed it a lot more than I expected to. A really good read, especially for high school students.
The Icarus Show – Sally Christie (2 stars)
I love the title, and the story is really interesting. It is an important book – a middle grade story which deals with depression and suicide for a younger audience. Because, devastatingly, it isn’t just a teenage and adult issue. I loved the way Christie portrayed her characters, one being totally and utterly naive, the other too old for his young years. Alex is oblivious as a main character, but that helps the reader identify signs in such a way that the ability might transfer to real life. An important tale for older primary school and younger high school students.
Who Let the Gods Out? – Maz Evans (3 stars)
This was a ridiculously funny story mixing many different types of mythology. Elliot is a normal young man dealing with not quite so normal stressors. His mother is ill, his home might be taken away, and he is failing history. Enter Virgo, a constellation on her first mission to Earth. She meets Elliot and together they accidentally release Thanatos, evil Daemon of Death. Oops. It’s up to them, with the help of some pretty great Greek gods, to save the world. My favourite things: Zeus dresses in what I can only imagine is a velour tracksuit, and Hermes is addicted to social media. I also now want to start using the word ‘Snordlesnort’ in my own vocabulary. Loved this little book!
Shades of Milk and Honey – Mary Robinette Kowal (2 stars)
This wasn’t as entertaining as I expected. It was much more closely associated with Austen storylines than I anticipated. This wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it did make it super predictable. I loved the magic system though, and I wish that had been explored in a little more detail. None of the men were described to my satisfaction either; I didn’t fall in love with any of them. Hahaha!
The Wheel of Osheim – Mark Lawrence (4 stars)
I could read books about Prince Jalan Kendeth for the rest of my life. He is a total arsehole, and still one of the most loveable characters I have ever read in fantasy – I wrote about him in detail in my review of Prince of Fools. And the ending Mark Lawrence writes for him is just total perfection. Another thing I really appreciate about Mark Lawrence is that he includes a little cheat sheet at the beginning of each book, listing the major events from the previous novels. It makes it A LOT easier to pick up the series when it has been a while since the last book. There were a lot of twists and turns which I really appreciated in this book, and I can’t wait to read Red Sister – it looks like it will be truly excellent.
The Marvels – Brian Selznick (4 stars)
Another beautiful story from Brian Selznick combining the power of illustrations and words. I think that this has been my favourite of his books! It explores grief, family, love, storytelling, and so much more. Plus, there are twists and turns everywhere, which I LOVED! Highly recommend.
Release – Patrick Ness (4 stars)
This story occurred over a single day. Adam’s entire life will change; his friendships, his relationship, his family, his work. I loved Adam’s portrayal, and his very real reactions to upsetting problems which arose. There is also a spiritual aspect to the book, with a murdered young girl haunting the places she once new in tandem with a Queen who has potential to cause destruction… I found the spiritual parts a bit confusing, but I adored Adam’s voice. I do still prefer The Rest of Us Just Live Here, but this was still a fantastic read.
The Wife of Bath – Geoffrey Chaucer (3 stars)
It’s good that I have finally returned to reading my collection of Little Black Classics – I have so many of them! This one was a lot of fun, and has encouraged me to seek out the rest of the Canterbury Tales when I have the time, and a significantly smaller TBR. It’s a lot of fun and examines the role of women in marriage; I liked how tongue in cheek it was!
What did you read this week?