“October extinguished itself in a rush of howling winds and driving rain and November arrived, cold as frozen iron, with hard frosts every morning and icy drafts that bit at exposed hands and faces.”
― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
I can’t believe it is already November! The last stubborn leaves have given up and fallen to the ground, where they’ve been covered in heavy frosts and falling raindrops. We’ve been gravitating towards our comfort foods, and our home, yard and vehicle are now ready for the blanket of snow that will soon cover us…
October was a decent reading month for me. I didn’t finish as many books as I’d have liked to, but I have completed my 2018 reading challenge: I’ve read 60/60 books! I also didn’t have any 5-star reads this month, which is unusual! I didn’t write any reviews in October, and I am struggling to read any of my NetGalley picks, because I really just despise reading on my e-reader. If I have the option of choosing a physical book, I will read that every time – regardless of how interesting the book on my e-reader is. The good news is that I own approximately 60 unread books…. which should last me another year without buying any (HAH, as if that will happen… )
This House is Haunted by John Boyne
Where the CrawdadsSing by Delia Owens
No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need by Naomi Klein
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
The Word is Murder by Anthony Horowitz
I also read an amazing graphic novel of Poe’s Stories & Poems! I didn’t count it towards my challenge, but for all of you Poe fans out there: it is BEAUTIFUL!
I am still currently reading:
A Storm of Swords by George R. R. Martin
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
The Wisdom of Psychopaths by Kevin Dutton
November (maybe) TBR:
I’m horrible at actually following a set TBR, because I am a mood reader. These are some I’m really hoping to get to though.
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor
The Toy Makers by Robert Dinsdale
The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
See any books that you’ve read or want to read!? Let me know in the comments below.
Total Number of Books: 6 Total Number of Pages: 2,162 Average Pages per Book: 360 Average Rating: 4.7
I had an amazing reading month! I will always choose quality over quantity, and this month I read quite a few wonderful books. I must admit that I am quite liberal with my five-star ratings, compared to most people, but if I really enjoy every aspect of a book I think it deserves those five stars! I also just know what I love in a book, so I tend to abandon other less interesting books and finish the good ones…
The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel: A Story of Sleepy Hollow by Alyssa Palombo ★★★★☆
This book definitely fit in well with September’s changing leaves and gloomier weather. I love that the author told the legend of Sleepy Hollow from the female perspective. There was a nice mix of romance, suspense, witchcraft and creepiness to make this a lovely autumn read. Thank you to NetGalley for this one – I’ll be posting a full review soon!
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald ★★★★☆
I’d read this before (ages ago), but I decided to listen to the audiobook version, narrated by Jake Gyllenhaal. I just adore the language in this book, and it has me seriously yearning for an evening spent at a Gatsby-style party. This era is one of my very favourite settings!
Us Against You by Fredrik Backman ★★★★★
The day I received this in the mail I started reading it. I’m pretty sure I finished it over a weekend, because I just couldn’t put it down! I am in love with Backman’s writing, and enjoyed spending more time with the residents of Beartown.
Harry Potter: A History of Magic ★★★★★
This book is EVERYTHING I LOVE combined into one stunning masterpiece. My major was history, and whilst at university I did a lot of research about magical beliefs and practices throughout history. This essentially looks at the magical creatures and subjects in Harry Potter, and their ties to various practices and people throughout history. It is absolutely fascinating, and is one that I will keep picking up and reading again and again. Plus, it is illustrated and presented in such a beautiful way.
The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton ★★★★★
I was sent this book as part of the HarperCollins Canada First Look program, and I am eternally grateful because it was one of those mind-blowing reads that you will keep thinking about long after you’ve finished it! Read my full review here.
Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover ★★★★★
This book is a fascinating glimpse into a very different life. I was completely captivated by the heartbreaking and unimaginable story of Tara’s childhood.
I have a really hard time sticking to a TBR list, HOWEVER since it is October, there are a few books that I am hoping to read this month:
This House is Haunted by John Boyne (1/3 through and loving it!)
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
The Witch of Willow Hall by Hester Fox
The Word is Murder by Anthony Horowitz
The Hollow of Fear by Sherry Thomas
The Little Shop of Found Things by Paula Brackston
How many books did you read in September? What were some of your favourites?
Total Number of Books: 3 Total Number of Pages: 739 Average Pages per Book: 246 Average Rating: 4
This was far from my best reading month, but I have legitimate excuses! At the beginning of August, Ryan’s family and friends arrived in Vancouver from England. We spent some time touring around Vancouver, then WE GOT MARRIED at the gorgeous Lac Le Jeune Wilderness Resort. It was an absolutely PERFECT day, and an amazing time spent with family and friends celebrating!
Here are the books I read in August:
Black Klansmanby Ron Stallworth ★★★☆☆ (3.5)
I was ecstatic to win this book in a giveaway by Raincoast books, as it had been on my radar! A Black Police Detective infiltrating the KKK!?!?!? The premise instantly intrigued me. While I found the book absolutely fascinating, the writing was not overly captivating. Interesting, but not “wow” for me. I feel like this COULD have been one of those amazing, mind-blowing books, but it just fell a little flat.
The Rain Watcher by Tatiana de Rosnay ★★★★☆
A moody and atmospheric read, delving into family relationships and the dark secrets and memories that lay beneath the surface of the beautiful and iconic setting. I don’t want to say too much, as I’m in the process of writing a full review. I will say that it’s the perfect autumn read (expected to be published October 23), and I love love loved the main character Linden.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Societyby Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows ★★★★★
I made myself read this (or rather listen to it via audiobook) before watching the movie. I ADORED it!!!! At first it was a bit difficult to keep track of all the characters, but I completely fell in love with each and every one of them – well, maybe not Mark. If epistolary novels are not your thing, then you probably won’t enjoy this; however, I found the letters incredibly entertaining, and they allowed the authentic voice of each character to shine through. While reading it, I kept wondering, “How on earth are they going to make this into a movie?” I think they did an excellent job! I’m definitely buying the book and reading it. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the book OR movie.
Now that summer holidays are over, I am hoping to get more reading done! I am currently reading A Storm of Swords, A Place for Us, and Educated. I also just received The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, and it sounds like such a good one that I am being swayed to start it, even though I already have enough books on the go. Ahhhh!!!!
Total Number of Books: 9 Total Number of Pages: 3,350 Average Pages per Book: 372 Average Rating: 4.3
Hellooooo summer vacation! July was such an awesome reading month for me! I’ll admit that I’m a reader who is pretty easy to please, but it’s impressive that I rated all of the books I read this month as above three stars.
Times Square (novella) by Rich Walls ★★★★☆ (3.5)
This was a fun read that swept me through the streets of dazzling New York on a little whirlwind adventure. A nice quick summer read.
The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware ★★★★☆
I didn’t like the last Ruth Ware book I read – The Woman in Cabin 10 – but I’m glad I read this one! Honestly, the cover drew me in, and it fit the secretive, gothic, creepy vibes so well. The tension and suspense kept me turning pages late into the night – which made it that much creepier…
This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate by Naomi Klein ★★★★★
I listened to the audiobook and it took me a long time to get through (I don’t even remember how long ago I started it…) but it was well worth it! I learned so much about climate change. Disclaimer: this is one of those books that will completely open your eyes and further your understanding, but along the way you will end up incredibly frustrated about what goes on in our world.
The Alchemistby Paul Coelho – ★★★★☆ (3.5)
I still feel torn about this one! Maybe I’ll write a full review at some point, if I ever sort my feelings out. For now let’s settle on part of me loving it, and another part of me feeling “meh” about it (can we maybe blame that on the fact that I’m a Gemini? The whole two very parts to my personality/preferences thing?) In other words… I’ll get back to you on The Alchemist.
A Clash of Kingsby George R. R. Martin ★★★★★
What can I even say? My love of this series is just through the roof! I have watched the TV series (several times…) and I was incredibly intimidated by the books. I am glad I started the TV series first, because it has definitely helped me to keep the characters and story lines straight, but obviously the books are WAY better. Don’t let the books intimidate you – they are fantastic!
Auschwitz Lullaby by Mario Escobar ★★★★★
I gravitate towards any WWII-era historical fiction. This book was both beautiful and tragic. Fans of Ruta Sepetys’ Salt to the Sea and Between Shades of Grey, as well as Martha Kelly Hall’s Lilac Girls will enjoy this novel. Read my full review of Auschwitz Lullaby here. It releases in August, so add it to your TBR/wishlist!
Fawkesby Nadine Brandes ★★★★☆
Remember, remember! The fifth of November, The Gunpowder treason and plot
My love of historical fiction AND fantasy led me to this one. I was so intrigued by the synopsis. I ended up really enjoying it, but not absolutely loving it. Five star reads are what I would consider must-reads – books that I would 100% recommend – but I can’t say this was one of those for me. Having said that, I found the story incredibly creative, and kept thinking about how much fun (especially as a massive history nerd) this would have been to come up with and write! Definitely worth trying if you like both historical fiction and fantasy, or for anyone who is already fascinated by this time period and/or Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot.
Bossypantsby Tina Fey ★★★★☆
I listened to this by audiobook, which was highly entertaining! Lots of laughs out loud. I can’t say I knew much about Tina Fey before listening to this, so I went started it with the expectations of something light and humorous. It was both hilarious and interesting. I have to say that I am a huge fan of memoir/autobiography audiobooks read by the authors themselves. See my new favourite next…
Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah ★★★★★
This was unexpectedly amazing! I listened to the audiobook, which was absolutely hilarious, but also insightful and emotional. Trevor Noah is an engaging storyteller, and it was so special to listen to him tell his own story. I started this book with no expectations, and finished feeling pleasantly surprised but also wanting more! I’m also listening to this a second time with my fiancé, because I loved it so much I just had to share it!
Wow! Three five-star reads for me this month! Have I mentioned how much I love summer vacation? 😉 August is our wedding month, with family and friends coming to Canada from the UK, so I probably won’t get much reading done, which I am totally OK with! I will definitely be sharing some of our bookish wedding decor with you on here 🙂 Also stay tuned for some reviews of the books above.
Which books did you read in July? Did you have any 5-star reads?