It’s October already; it feels like summer was only yesterday!
With the arrival of October comes the biggest challenge I’ve faced on my blog so far, Blogtober. Yes, I’ve challenged myself to post every single day for the duration of October. So, this should be interesting.
Anyway, during September, I read a grand total of 20 books and I’m going to set myself the challenge of only using 40 words or less to review them. This is in the spirit of Vox, which was one of my favourite reads for this month.
All The Books I Read in September:
1. Sea Witch by Sarah Henning
I’ve read so many amazing fairy-tale re-tellings and sadly, this just wasn’t hitting the mark for me. I feel like a Ursula origin story could be so much stronger and the characters just felt a bit listless. Two stars.
2. Dietland by Sarai Walker
I’d been reading bits and pieces of this for weeks, as I had borrowed it as an ebook, after hearing so much about the Amazon Prime show. I found it funny, empowering and a brilliant commentary on society. Four stars.
3. Show Stealer by Hayley Barker
A vast improvement on the first book for me. There was less insta-love, more character growth and I found it even more darkly compelling. I am now the proud owner of signed copies of both books! Four stars.
4. The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas
This was an amazing mystery, which I love to read as the nights grow ever darker. Great twists and turns that threw me, gripping scenes and the sense that you could never quite put the book down. Four stars.
5. Cross Her Heart by Sarah Pinborough
What a contrast to The Darkest Corners. Another Pinborough mystery where the reveal just feels a bit unnatural and jarring. It’s almost like there’s a sudden rush to wrap all the action up. Until that point, I quite enjoyed it. Two stars.
6. The Cure For Dreaming by Cat Winters
YA historical fiction that focuses on how when you try to keep people silent, their voices only get louder. A powerful take on Victorian feminism and hypnotism, but the ending didn’t sparkle enough for me. Three stars.
7. Girl In The Window by Penny Joelson
Another insightful book from Joelson here with a protagonist who has ME. I liked it, but just found it slightly forgettable. It does tackle some tough themes and this is the first book I’ve seen that has ME representation. Three stars.
8, 9 & 10. The Diviners, Lair of Dreams and Before The Devil Breaks You by Libba Bray
Another series I’ve fallen in love with this year! I wrote a full series review here, so I won’t gush about them too much here. Four stars.
11. Night of the Party by Tracy Mathias
Fiercely political, relevant and completely took me by surprise. Unfortunately the insta-love let it down a bit for me. I would’ve preferred a friendship, as I didn’t think it was strictly necessary. An author to look out for. Three stars.
12. Fearie Tales: Stories of the Grim and Gruesome (anthology)
Anthologies are notoriously hit and miss for me, but overall I quite enjoyed this one. There were some stellar stories in there, but most of them were just middle of the road. An appropriately creepy read for autumn. Three stars.
13. Legendary by Stephanie Garber
I’d been putting this off, as I was so worried it wouldn’t live up to Caraval for me. I needn’t have worried. Expect to see a more detailed review soon. Four stars.
14. Not That Bad: Dispatches From Rape Culture (anthology)
Another ebook here, which I slowly devoured over a few weeks. Each story broke my heart in a different way. Powerful, relevant and important. I would add a strong trigger warning for abuse, rape and sexual assault. Four stars.
15. Vox by Christina Dalcher
Straight from one feminist book to another. This was dynamic and scarily easy to visualise. This is what I wish The Power had been like. I was glued to the book; needing to know what would happen next. Four stars.
16. And The Ocean Was Our Sky by Patrick Ness
This had some of the most beautiful illustrations I’d ever seen. Ness included a good message about fate and destiny, but I felt like the plot didn’t really go anywhere and felt a bit convoluted. Three stars.
17. That’s Not What Happened by Kody Keplinger
I quite liked it, but it wasn’t mind blowing. Good plot about survival and how facts are twisted to suit a certain narrative, but some of the characters just felt a tiny bit flat for me. Three stars.
18. Tradition by Brendan Kiely
Trigger warning for sexual assault and a lot of discussion around that subject. Kiely covers a lot here and utterly destroys toxic masculinity. Again, it was just the unnecessary romance that let me down. Three stars.
19. The Hurting by Lucy van Smit
An atmospheric, incredibly tense tale where you weren’t sure who to trust. I was completely gripped, but I just couldn’t connect to most of the characters. I hated how Harper and the dad barely seemed to change as well. Three stars.
20. A Thousand Beginnings and Endings (anthology)
A while ago, I included this anthology in a list of my anticipated one (here) and luckily it exceeded my expectations. I was just blown away by this beautiful anthology. For once, I loved every single story. Five stars,
Over To You:
So, those are all the books I read in September, but which ones did you read? What did you think of them?