Can you believe it’s already June? I’ve been at my new job for 7 months now, holy wow is it even new anymore?? Just a little over 4 months and I wil be heading to the U.S oh my gosh I’m so nervous and excited!
Anyway, May was a good month for reading, both in how much I read and how cosy it was to stay indoors reading! Honestly, any excuse to stay indoors reading and I’m all over it. The cooler months bring with them a less-social Grace who thinks nothing better than cuddling with a book under a blanket. I did see Hanya Yanagihara in conversation with a friend, so that’s totally social enough. And this month I will be seeing Me Before You in cinemas. That will max out my sociability for the month.
This month I read a total of 7 books: 5 fiction novels, 1 non-fiction and 1 graphic novel. 1 was a re-read and one was an Advanced Reading Copy.
The Princess Bride by William Goldman 3/5 stars
I started off the month with The Princess Bride. I absolutely loved the film as most people do so I thought that I was going to love this. Unfortunately, I didn’t. The parts where William Goldman droned on and on about his life were so dull and infuriating. I think I must be missing the humour in them, that it’s some kind of American humour I don’t understand. Either way it flew right over my head and just ensured that I loathed Goldman’s exagerrated self. However, the actual ‘Princess Bride’ chapters were great and anything that was put in parentheses were hilarious! This book could have been so much more and I wish it lived up to its expectations.
“Inigo was in Despair. Hard to find on the map (this was after maps) not because cartographers didn’t know of its existence, but because when they visited to measure its precise dimensions, they became so depressed they began to drink and question everything, most notably why would anyone want to be something as stupid as a cartographer?”
“Do I love you? My God, if your love were a grain of sand, mine would be a universe of beaches.”
“You seem a decent fellow,” Inigo said. “I hate to kill you.”
“You seem a decent fellow,” answered the man in black. “I hate to die.”
“There have been five great kisses since 1642 B.C…(before then couples hooked thumbs.) And the precise rating of kisses is a terribly difficult thing, often leading to great controversy…. Well, this one left them all behind.”
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas 5/5 stars
With the second book in the ACOTAR series coming out, I knew I wanted to re-read the first one and I’m so glad I did as my memory can get a little fuzzy at times. Beauty and the Beast is an absolute favourite of mine (I was tagged in the new Beauty and the Beast teaser trailer 4 separate times by friends, how cute is that!) and so I of course love this book.
I’m not a huge fan of fairies so I was a bit hesitant at first but I’ve come to the conclusion that Sarah J Maas is queen and we all need to bow down to her.
“I love you,’ he whispered, and kissed my brow. ‘Thorns and all.”
“You can leave if you’re just going to insult me.”
“But I’m so good at it”.
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas 5/5 stars
Now, I’ve always been a “go-down-with-my-ship” kind of gal, however, only Queen Sarah could change that. I jumped ship without a care in the world.
What can I say about this book in a non-spoilery way? Hmm… you’ll be glad that this is over 600 pages long. This sequel is loosely based on the Hades and Persephone mythical story.
It expands on the world that Maas has built and adds in a few more characters that are already well developed.
When I finished this book I wanted to go back and read the series AGAIN straight away. It’s been a few weeks now and I still want to do that and am just fighting the urge.
“When you spend so long trapped in darkness, Lucien, you find that the darkness begins to stare back.”
“To the people who look at the stars and wish, Rhys.”
Rhys clinked his glass against mine. “To the stars who listen— and the dreams that are answered.”
“I was burning through books every day – stories about people and places I’d never heard of. They were perhaps the only thing that kept me from teetering into utter despair.”
The Monstrous Child by Francesca Simon 1/5 stars
Better known for writing the ‘Horrid Henry’ junior fiction series, Francesca Simon has delved into the world of teen fiction, or at least this is what it is being marketed as. It was definitely not teen fiction, it was merely kids fiction with a few ‘adult’ words and gross topics thrown into the mix. I really didn’t enjoy this. It may be the only thing I have ever rated 1 star and I feel slightly bad but honestly, thinking about this book just makes me angry. The premise was exciting enough- it explores Norse mythology, told from the perspective of Hel, Loki’s unwanted mutant daughter, and how she came to rule her namesake.
It was rushed, not that I wanted to linger at any point but there were quite a few “Oh I guess this is happening now” parts. The main character was a whiny nuisance who had some obsessive issues that bordered on stalker. Did not enjoy, but I finished it quickly enough just so I could move on. My edition was only 300 pages and had gigantic font so that certainly helped (and reinforced the “children’s fiction” point.)
Talking To My Country by Stan Grant 5/5 stars
I thought I’d fly through this book because it’s only 225 pages. I was so wrong! It took me 5 days to read those 225 pages. After every second paragraph I had to stop and think about what I’d just read. It just hit so close to home and I know that was the intention. This book forces you to sit the fuck down and listen. I read a few articles that mentioned how aloof Stan Grant can be and how that is sometimes perceived as standoffish. Let me tell you, if this is what is going around his head all day I really don’t blame him. I was constantly staring off into space, thinking about my past, wondering what it would have been like if I wasn’t born into this place of privilege. I’m still internally processing this book and I really, really encourage every Australian to read it, no matter what your heritage.
Saga Volume 4. by Brian K Vaughan 5/5 stars
I am absolutely loving this series of graphic novels. The world (universe?) is so interesting and well-built. It’s just got everything you could ever want in a sci-fi graphic novel and the illustrations are ah-mazing! You need to get onto this series if you love sci fi and graphic novels because, seriously. Amazing.
Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier 5/5 stars
Up until recently, I hadn’t even heard of Daphne Du Maurier. We had a copy of The Birds and other Short Stories at work and with ‘The Birds’ being one of my all time favourite movies I picked it up and began my research into Du Maurier. After noticing that she wrote the novels that a bunch of my favourite movies are based on, I was fangirling. With Rebecca, I had only ever heard whispers about it. I picked up two novels that both mentioned how they were similar to Rebecca and I was like, “you know what, I need to read this.” So I ordered in the best looking paperback I could find.
My golly goodness, this book! I’m a huge fan of the gothic genre, especially when there’s a heroine and big, creepy house involved. I knew I was going to love this but what I didn’t expect was that Du Maurier would create these somewhat stuffy, superficial but empathetic characters and then have them shed their superficial skins halfway through to expose their true selves. I felt like the tables completely turned at one point and the second half of this book seemed to fly by. You think you know what’s happening and where it’s going but Du Maurier was an expert, you won’t see what’s coming.
And that ending! Wow, just….wow. I loved this! I look forward to rereading it in the future.
“I suppose sooner or later in the life of everyone comes a moment of trial. We all of us have our particular devil who rides us and torments us, and we must give battle in the end.”
“I believe there is a theory that men and women emerge finer and stronger after suffering, and that to advance in this or any world we must endure ordeal by fire.”
“As I stood there,hushed and still, I could swear that the house was not an empty shell but lived and breathed as it had lived before.”
So that’s what I read last month! I don’t have a June TBR in mind because I usually go where the wind carries me when it comes to reading.
Happy reading everyone!