wrap-ups

Read in April

10/05/2020

Hoohoo, guys!

It’s wrap up time. March was 500 years long, April probably two weeks. And it was the best reading month I’ve had in years! I just read and read and read and read and did some uni things but mostly I just read. In total, I read 13 books, some of which I loved and some I hated. I also took part in the OWLs readathon which forced me to read some of the books that have been on my tbr for years and I’m really happy to have read some of them! I discovered a new favourite! I went for the career of culinary sorcerer and got all the necessary OWLs! Woohoo! But now, let’s have a look at the books, shall we?


*click on the covers to get to the goodreads page*

let's talk about loveLet’s talk about Love by Claire Kann

Square Fish | 4th June 2019 | 304 pages | black biromantic asexual MC, Japanese-American LI, queer side character

Alice had her whole summer planned. Nonstop all-you-can-eat buffets while marathoning her favorite TV shows (best friends totally included) with the smallest dash of adulting-working at the library to pay her share of the rent. The only thing missing from her perfect plan? Her girlfriend (who ended things when Alice confessed she’s asexual). Alice is done with dating-no thank you, do not pass go, stick a fork in her, done.
But then Alice meets Takumi and she can’t stop thinking about him or the rom com-grade romance feels she did not ask for (uncertainty, butterflies, and swoons, oh my!).
When her blissful summer takes an unexpected turn and Takumi becomes her knight with a shiny library-employee badge (close enough), Alice has to decide if she’s willing to risk their friendship for a love that might not be reciprocated-or understood.

I loved this book! One of my new favourites!
> It was so fun!
> and diverse! and cute!
> and there were books!
> and food!
> 5/5 swords!


frankensteinFrankenstein by Mary Shelley

Penguin Classics | 335 pages | TW: blood, death, murder, loss of loved ones

At once a Gothic thriller, a passionate romance, and a cautionary tale about the dangers of science, Frankenstein tells the story of committed science student Victor Frankenstein. Obsessed with discovering the cause of generation and life and bestowing animation upon lifeless matter, Frankenstein assembles a human being from stolen body parts but; upon bringing it to life, he recoils in horror at the creature’s hideousness. Tormented by isolation and loneliness, the once-innocent creature turns to evil and unleashes a campaign of murderous revenge against his creator, Frankenstein.

> really makes you think about morals and ethics
> kinda slow
> beautiful descriptions of landscapes!!
> is the monster the monster or is Frankenstein the monster?
> 4/5 swords!


going off scriptGoing Of Script by Jen Wilde

Swoon Reads | 304 pages | 21.05.2019 | contemporary YA | Rep: queer, gay, bi, lesbian, black, Indian | TW: homophobia, sexism

Seventeen-year-old Bex is thrilled when she gets an internship on her favorite tv show, Silver Falls. Unfortunately, the internship isn’t quite what she expected… instead of sitting in a crowded writer’s room volleying ideas back and forth, Production Interns are stuck picking up the coffee.
Determined to prove her worth as a writer, Bex drafts her own script and shares it with the head writer―who promptly reworks it and passes it off as his own! Bex is understandably furious, yet…maybe this is just how the industry works? But when they rewrite her proudly lesbian character as straight, that’s the last straw! It’s time for Bex and her crush to fight back.

> LA! Hollywood!
> TW shows & fanfictions & fandoms
> so queer!!
> protagonist not taking shit and fighting the patriarchy
> 4/5 swords!


when you get the chanceWhen you get the chance by Tom Ryan & Robin Stevenson

Running Press Kids | 272 pages | 05.05.2020 | contemporary YA | Rep: gay, queer, bi, polyam, enby, trans | TW: homophobia, death of loved one, internalized transphobia

As kids, Mark and his cousin Talia spent many happy summers together at the family cottage in Ontario, but a fight between their parents put an end to the annual event. Living on opposite coasts – Mark in Halifax and Talia in Victoria – they haven’t seen each other in years. When their grandfather dies unexpectedly, Mark and Talia find themselves reunited at the cottage once again, cleaning it out while the family decides what to do with it.
Mark and Talia are both queer, but they soon realize that’s about all they have in common, other than the fact that they’d both prefer to be in Toronto. Talia is desperate to see her high school sweetheart Erin, who’s barely been in touch since leaving to spend the summer working at a coffee shop in the Gay Village. Mark, on the other hand, is just looking for some fun, and Toronto Pride seems like the perfect place to find it.
When a series of complications throws everything up in the air, Mark and Talia – with Mark’s little sister Paige in tow – decide to hit the road for Toronto. With a bit of luck, and some help from a series of unexpected new friends, they might just make it to the big city and find what they’re looking for. That is, if they can figure out how to start seeing things through each other’s eyes.

> estranged family reconnecting with some new parameters thrown in
> realistic family portrayal
> queer!!
> road trip!
> 4/5 swords!
> read full review here


the time machineThe Time Machine by H.G. Wells

Rock Paper Books | 148 pages | 07.11.2014 | classic scifi | TW: death, blood, racism

The Time Machine tells the story of the Time Traveler, an inventor living in Victorian England. Traveling into the distant future using his time machine he encounters the descendants of humans and witnesses the end of life on earth. Wells’ first published book, The Time Machine, popularized the concept of human time travel and has influenced countless works of fiction.

> so slow!
> so weird?
> almost nobody has a name? why does the protagonsit not even have a name
> it was just really weird
>and also creepy omg


kit sweetlyThe Life and (Medieval) Times of Kit Sweetly by Jamie Pacton

Page Street | 384 pages | 05.05.2020 | contemporary YA | Rep: poor MC, bi, trans, black, Indian-Russian LI | TW: alcohol, sexism, smoking, drugs

Working as a wench ― i.e. waitress ― at a cheesy medieval-themed restaurant in the Chicago suburbs, Kit Sweetly dreams of being a knight like her brother. She has the moves, is capable on a horse, and desperately needs the raise that comes with knighthood, so she can help her mom pay the mortgage and hold a spot at her dream college.
Company policy allows only guys to be knights. So when Kit takes her brother’s place and reveals her identity at the end of the show, she rockets into internet fame and a whole lot of trouble with the management. But the Girl Knight won’t go down without a fight. As other wenches join her quest, a protest forms. In a joust before Castle executives, they’ll prove that gender restrictions should stay medieval―if they don’t get fired first.

> feminist
> diverse
> there are swords! and jousting! and knights!
> rep for poor people
> fun! nerdy! geeky! all the LotR love!
> 5/5 swords!
> read full review here


nocturnaNocturna by Maya Motayne

Balzer + Bray | 480 pages | 07.05.2019 | YA fantasy | Rep: queer side character | TW: blood, death, murder, mental abuse, physical abuse, manipulation

To Finn Voy, magic is two things: a knife to hold under the chin of anyone who crosses her…and a disguise she shrugs on as easily as others pull on cloaks.
As a talented faceshifter, it’s been years since Finn has seen her own face, and that’s exactly how she likes it. But when Finn gets caught by a powerful mobster, she’s forced into an impossible mission: steal a legendary treasure from Castallan’s royal palace or be stripped of her magic forever.
After the murder of his older brother, Prince Alfehr is first in line for the Castallan throne. But Alfie can’t help but feel that he will never live up to his brother’s legacy. Riddled with grief, Alfie is obsessed with finding a way to bring his brother back, even if it means dabbling in forbidden magic.
But when Finn and Alfie’s fates collide, they accidentally unlock a terrible, ancient power—which, if not contained, will devour the world. And with Castallan’s fate in their hands, Alfie and Finn must race to vanquish what they have unleashed, even if it means facing the deepest darkness in their pasts.

> rivals forced to work together
> fun!
> cool magic!
> Latinx-inspired world
> 4/5 swords!


aix marks the spotAix Marks the Spot by Sarah Anderson

Seabreeze Books | 380 pages | 16.06.2020 | contemporary YA | Rep: lesbian side characters | TW: alcohol, car accident, slurs

Jamie has been dreaming of this summer forever: of road trips and intensive art camps, of meeting cute boys with her best friend Jazz. What she didn’t count on was the car accident.
Exiled away from her family as her mother slowly learns to walk again, Jamie is sent to Provence and trapped in an isolated home with the French grandmother she has never met, the guilt of having almost killed her parents, and no Wi-Fi. Enough to drive a girl mad. That is, until, she finds an old letter from her father, the starting point in a treasure hunt that spans across cities and time itself. Somehow, she knows that the treasure is the key to putting her shattered family back together and that whatever lies at the end has the power to fix everything.
Armed only with a high-school-level of French and a map of train lines, she must enlist the aid of Valentin, a handsome local who’s willing to translate. To save her family, she has castle ruins to find and sea cliffs to climb; falling for her translator wasn’t part of her plan…

> love for France in every word
> made me miss France S O much
> cute story
> character sometimes a bit flat
>3/5 swords!
> read full review here


talking to alaskaTalking to Alaska by Anna Woltz

Translated by Laura Watkinson (from Dutch) | Rock the Boat | 192 pages | 02.07. 2020 | contemporary MG | Rep: epilepsy | TW: bullying, trauma, armed robbery

After the worst summer of her life, Parker desperately wants to be invisible. But her new classmate Sven has other ideas. He knows he has to do something memorable on his first day or he’ll forever be the epileptic kid that everyone feels sorry for. Unfortunately for Parker, he decides to make her his target. So, when Parker discovers that Alaska, the dog she used to own and love, is now Sven’s assistance dog, she hatches a plan to get her revenge…

> boy with epilepsy & service dog
> girl & boy bonding through service dog
> cute!
> character develpment!
> 5/5 swords!


the manifesto on how to be interestingThe Manifesto on how to be interesting by Holly Bourne

Usborne | 448 pages | 01.08.2014 | contemporary YA | Rep: depression | TW: severe self harm, bullying, alcohol, sexual assault, cheating, sextape with minor, teacher-minor relationship

Bree is by no means popular. Most of the time, she hates her life, her school, her never-there-parents. So she writes.
But when Bree is told she needs to stop shutting the world out and start living a life worth writing about, The Manifesto on How to Be Interesting is born. A manifesto that will change everything…
…but the question is, at what cost?

> nope.
> nah.
> I wish I had trigger warnings before this
> everyone. every single person in this book is horrible
> mental health rep really could have been better
> why
> 1/5 swords!
> read full review here


the henna warsThe Henna Wars by Adiba Jaigirdar

Page Street | 12.05.2020 | 400 pages | contemporary YA | Rep: Bengali, Bengali lesbian, Brazilian-Irish, bi, Korean | TW: racism, homophobia, buyyling, character outing

When Nishat comes out to her parents, they say she can be anyone she wants—as long as she isn’t herself. Because Muslim girls aren’t lesbians. Nishat doesn’t want to hide who she is, but she also doesn’t want to lose her relationship with her family. And her life only gets harder once a childhood friend walks back into her life.
Flávia is beautiful and charismatic and Nishat falls for her instantly. But when a school competition invites students to create their own businesses, both Flávia and Nishat choose to do henna, even though Flávia is appropriating Nishat’s culture. Amidst sabotage and school stress, their lives get more tangled—but Nishat can’t quite get rid of her crush on Flávia, and realizes there might be more to her than she realized.

> cute
> old friends reconnecting
> old enemies reconnecting
> rivals! friends! lovers!
> beautiful family portrayal!
> queer brown girls!
> 4/5 swords!
> read full review here


imagine meImagine Me by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me #6 | Electric Monkey | 448 pages | 02.04.2020 | paranormal, dystopia, scifi | Rep: gay, Japanese-American | TW: blood, violence, murder, physical abuse, mental abuse

Juliette Ferrars. Ella Sommers. Which is the truth and which is the lie?
Now that Ella knows who Juliette is and what she was created for, things have only become more complicated. As she struggles to understand the past that haunts her and looks to a future more uncertain than ever, the lines between right and wrong – between Ella and Juliette – blur. And with old enemies looming, her destiny may not be her own to control.
The day of reckoning for the Reestablishment is coming. But will the choice of which side to fight on be hers?

> Kenji and Warner!! more or less bonding! probably less
> tbh the Kenji & Warner scenes were the best
> didn’t care much anymore about Juliette or Ella
> or Emmaline for that matter
> the ending was meh? unsatisfying?
> just. Kenji. I love him.
> 3/5 swords!


ghost squadGhost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega

Scholastic | 256 pages | 07.04.2020 | paranormal MG | Rep: Dominican, black | TW: death

For Lucely Luna, ghosts are more than just the family business.
Shortly before Halloween, Lucely and her best friend, Syd, cast a spell that accidentally awakens malicious spirits, wreaking havoc throughout St. Augustine. Together, they must join forces with Syd’s witch grandmother, Babette, and her tubby tabby, Chunk, to fight the haunting head-on and reverse the curse to save the town and Lucely’s firefly spirits before it’s too late.

> so cute
> ghosts! cool ones. evil ones. family ones.
> cool cat(s)!
> cool witches!
> cool characters!
>4/5 swords!


and this is my reading month. What about you? What did you read? What was your favourite?


Until next time,

  1. Hey Kat,

    I feel like April did not exist at all and I have absolutely no clue what happened in April. I also haven’t read that much but it’s great to see that you did – 13 books is awesome! Especially when you liked most of them.
    „Frankenstein“ is a books that’s on my wish list for ages and I am glad to read that you liked it. Hopefully, I manage to read it soon. (Like, together with „Pride and Prejudice“ and „Dracula“ and all the other books that are attracting dust on my wish list.)

    Have a wonderful May!
    Dana

    1. hoohoo!
      May is on the run too. How is it already the 10th? What? How?
      Frankenstein is a really intersting read! We read it for our classics book club and the discussion on it was interesting as well. frankenstein is definitely a book that gets you thinking.
      Pride and Prejudice is wonderful, though very slow.
      I haven’t read Dracula yet but I’d like to someday.
      I hope you’ll enjoy them all.
      Happy Sunday <3
      Kat

  2. Ah you’ve had such an amazing reading month, this makes me so happy! I really want to read Let’s Talk About Love, I heard amazing things about this book and I really love that cover, too.
    I’m so glad you liked Going Off Script! It’s such a fun, entertaining, amazing read and the characters are my favorites <3
    I hope you'll have a lovely May 🙂

    1. It’s one of my new favourites!! Let’s talk about Love is wonderful, I really hope you’ll love it!
      Jen Wilde’s books are always so good 🙂 Going Off Script was as well and I’m so happy I finally read it!
      happy reading & a wonderful month <3

  3. Hi
    What an awesome reading list full of awesome books! I really love the way you categorize the titles, give trigger warnings and details so valuable for lots of readers. I have not seen this before in a blog, but this might be my „narrow“ view XD
    I have not read any book from your April list, but I am excited to look closer into (at least!) Ghost Squad and The Life and (Medieval) Times. And since I love illustrated books and Ghost Squad looks as it may have any, it is illustrated?
    Sandra
    btw: I noticed your blog in the litnetzwerk list, thanks for participating, so I found my way to your beautiful blog 😀

    1. oh thank you so much!! I thought I should put down the most important infos and trigger warnings & representation belong with those, I believe.
      Ghost Squad isn’t illustrated, it just has more detailed chapter beginnings, but I wouldn’t call those illustrations.
      I’m so glad you like my blog so much, thank you!! 🙂
      Love,
      Kat

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