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Quick Lit: January 2019 (Part 2)


In Part One, I reviewed nine of the 20 books I read in January. I'm talking about nine more in today's post, plus two books I finished in February. I'm SO CLOSE to being all caught on reviews. Will I ever make it?! As always, check out the Quick Lit linkup hosted by Modern Mrs. Darcy for more reviews and recs from other readers.


DREAMS OF GODS AND MONSTERS BY LAINI TAYLOR – Hello, heartbreaker and hope healer. I realized last year that I'd only read this beast once, and I knew that had to be remedied. Although I was listening to the audiobooks, I loved just savoring my time in this world over the span of three months. I've seen mixed reviews of this conclusion on Goodreads, but I unequivocally loved it. There's a whole new layer to this world introduced in this book, and I thought it was fascinating. I can understand why some felt the book was too long, but I just didn't want it to end! And speaking of the ending, I love how it leaves some things open to your imagination. I'm So Obsessed With It

SKY IN THE DEEP BY ADRIENNE YOUNG – Since I was still in a fantasy mood after finishing my previous read, I dove in to this standalone. I'd heard good things about it, including that it was part Wonder Woman and part Vikings. But I don't know either of those things well enough to tell you if that's true! I can tell you that it's got brutal battles in a world that felt vivid. It started on a high and then slowed down a lot in the middle, but I never wanted to put it down. Where it was lacking was in the characters. I wasn't invested in the heroine or other characters, so the book won't stand out in my memory. I So Liked It and will be interested in seeing what Young writes next.

THE CRUEL PRINCE BY HOLLY BLACK – To call this book hyped would be one of the biggest understatements of book blogging. I've heard nothing but praise since it came out last year! And whether it was my sky-high expectations or general dislike of faerie stories, this one didn't totally work for me. I finished it quickly but didn't like anyone in it. Was that supposed to happen? The romance bothered me. The hero, if you can call him that, was an asshole. And I'm supposed to forgive him because of his tragic backstory? NOPE. It took me a while to warm up to the plot, though it did end on exciting note. I was So Okay With It and probably won't continue the series. 


FOOLISH HEARTS BY EMMA MILLS – Though I enjoyed both books I've read from Emma Mills, I bought this one for the cover. It's just so gorgeous! And y'all, it ended up being one of my favorite reads of the month. Lately I've felt like I've outgrown most YA contemporary novels because I often identify more with the parents than the protagonist. But this little gem reminded me of why I love the genre! It was the best comfort read when I had a nerve-wracking doctor's appointment, and I found myself laughing out loud more than once. If you're a fan of clever dialogue, this book is for you. It has great friendships and an even better romance. I So Loved It!

SILENT IN THE GRAVE BY DEANNA RAYBOURN – After loving Raybourn's Veronica Speedwell series, I kept meaning to check out Lady Julia Grey. I finally got around to it in January! There are a lot of similarities between the series: a convention-defying heroine, a mysterious hero, a slow-burn romance, and a case to untangle. It was enjoyable, but I didn't like it nearly as much as Veronica in comparison. I can't really put my finger on the reason! I solved the mystery very early on, and I just wasn't invested enough in the characters. I'm sure the romance will build to something even better, but I don't care enough to continue. I So Liked It but won't keep reading the series.

UNMARRIAGEABLE BY SONIAH KAMAL – Pride and Prejudice set in Pakistan? This sounded right up my alley! And while I loved how Kamal reimagined this beloved book in a new setting and culture, I struggled to finish it. The setting was definitely my favorite aspect of the novel! I loved learning about the the food, clothes, class system, and more. The characters felt so flat to me, and the relationships all needed development. I didn't feel connected to anyone in the story! I don't know if it was the writing or just because I'm harder to please with P&P retellings, but I was only So Okay With It. The premise and setting were fantastic, but the story itself was just so boring.


THE CHILBURY LADIES' CHOIR BY JENNIFER RYAN – There's a scene in this one where a mother watches her adult son leave to fight in WWII, and it was one of the most moving moments for me. I love when a book is able to tap into an emotion that‘s universal and timeless! This novel, told in journal entries and letters, depicts life in a small English village during the war. From weighty moments of grief and fear to petty squabbles between neighbors, it was an uplifting read. I had to suspend some disbelief over the level of detail in the letters/journal entries, but I still So Enjoyed It overall. I don't think this story will stick with me in the long run, but it was still charming.

ACT LIKE IT, PRETTY FACE & MAKING UP BY LUCY PARKER – I took stole this cute picture from Kelly. But don't worry, I had her permission! I just couldn't resist this cuteness and don't own headphones like these, and it was too perfect since I re-read via audio, too. I was in the mood for something fun and fast, and these fit the bill. Bonus? The narrators were great, especially for the second where the voice played a role in the plot. I fell for this series last year, and I stand by my recommendation after re-reading. I love all three relationships, and they each have just the right amount of drama that never drags on too long. I'm So Obsessed With It and can't wait for the fourth book.

YOU HAD ME AT HELLO BY MHAIRI MCFARLANE – I technically read this at the very end of February, but I had space for one more book in this post so it got bumped up. I spent February re-reading, and it was so fun. I was craving some Mhairi humor and when with this book since it's the only one I hadn't re-read! In my memory, it was my least favorite of the five I've read from her. And that's still true after revisiting it. In fact, I like it less now than I did before. It's a solid So Enjoyed It, so it's not like I hated it! I just got way more frustrated with the characters and the miscommunication that led to such a huge separation. However, Mhairi's writing and humor still shine!

What have you been reading lately?

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