Tales & Tiger Lily: November 2020

My sister recently joined bookstagram as @talesandtigerlily. Her name is Caroline, and Tiger Lily is her adorable sidekick (pictured above). Since she's discovered a love of reading, I've had the best time talking about books with her. Be sure to check out her introduction post to get to know her better. Once a month, you get a new installment of Tales & Tiger Lily. In each post, she reviews three of her favorite reads from the previous month and ends with a list of everything she read with ratings (and links to reviews, if applicable). Her top three from November:

“That was what magic did. It revealed the heart of who you'd been before life took away your belief in the possible. It gave back the world all lonely children longed for.”

Ninth House is a book about Yale’s secret societies but with a fantasy twist — the societies possess magic. Bardugo went to Yale and was actually part of Wolf’s Head society. She intertwined fact and fiction leaving you wanting to Google search which parts were real. For me, it made it an even creepier read. I don’t normally like stories with ghosts, but I just decided to go with it. It was quite fun — in a dark way.

The Ninth House, the Lethe House, is supposed to keep an eye on the other societies practicing magic. There were so many secrets to uncover! The characters were fabulous. Alex Stern, the main character, was “found” by the Lethe House because of her ability to see ghosts. I felt very invested in her — I loved her personality and her commitment to justice.

My only complaint about the book? Not enough Darlington!! As Alex’s mentor, I was hoping to be graced with his presence every page. Why do I love the men in fantasy novels? However, I have a feeling we are going to get a lot more of him in book two, and I can’t wait. I thought this book was going to be a lot darker because of all the reviews about “trigger warnings.” The bad things that happened in the book were very real world cruelties that people sadly endure every day. I don’t think it’s anything that should keep you from reading it. I loved it, and I know I will be excited to read book two. I would understand if someone didn’t care for it tho. It reminded me of Ghosts of Harvard, but I liked this one A LOT more. | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ.5

“May your Paths be safe, your Floors unbroken and may the House fill your eyes with Beauty.”

I was very intrigued as I opened this book and sat down to read it. It’s quite short, so I felt like even if I didn’t love it, I didn’t waste much time. For the majority of the book, I questioned my own comprehension — wondering if I was making sense of the events, the symbolism, the characters. The House, the main character Piranesi, all these long endless halls leading to rooms filled with thousands of statues — what is going on? It was quite confusing, but you just have to let your mind go with it.

Then, oh so beautifully, Clarke does a brilliant job of putting all the puzzle pieces together in an ‘aha’ moment. I was so happy because my understanding and predictions were accurate. Piranesi is just one of my favorite characters. He was, to me, quite a bit of the Pollyanna type — happy, optimistic, at peace with his surroundings. The world needs more people like him. I grew to love him by the end of the book.

The ending! It was so magical and beautiful that I actually shed a tear. The ending made me want to appreciate all the wonderful things in our world instead of focusing on the negative. Seeing a family eating dinner together, taking a walk and watching the sunset, picking out a new book, meeting a friend for coffee — these normal daily activities are really the precious moments in life we take for granted.

I would understand if someone didn’t care for this book, but it was a five-star read for me. I think if you loved Circe by Madeline Miller, you should definitely give it a try.  | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ

“The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not.”

The Night Circus is rich in detail — magical, wispy, and breathtakingly beautiful. Every chapter was a masterpiece. The writing captivates you as though you were in a dream you never want to end. The story ends and you want to start the book over to enter the dream again.

You turn each page not knowing what you will find. Your curiosity will get the better of you as you enter the magical Le Cirque des Rรชves. You will feel you know the characters well and at the same time they will be out of grasp, like a shadow or shape that appears in the night.

Most of you have probably read this book, but if you haven’t, you must pick it up. It’s perfect. I loved every minute of it, and I read it slowly throughout the week. I didn’t want The Night Circus to end.  | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ

Recapping the Rest of Caroline's November Reads:
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ
The Poison Thread by Laura Purcell | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ
Black Sun by Rebecca Raonhorse | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ
White Ivy by Susie Chang | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ.5 • Review
Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ
Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ
The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Trenton | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ.5 • Review
The Pull of the Stars by Emma Donoghue | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ
Goodnight Beautiful by Aimee Molloy | ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ๐Ÿถ


  1. I've been curious about Piranesi but haven't taken the plunge and actually read it yet. It sounds like the kind of book that would also make me question my comprehension of it, but I can't help being drawn to that mysterious premise!


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