This was one of the best month’s worth of books I’ve had in a long long while. Four total hits and one miss makes this month’s round up an 80% success which is pretty damn good on my scale.
- Three Dark Crowns – I so badly wanted this series to be good. SO. BADLY. The book blurb had so much potential but unfortunately, the execution fell extremely flat. Three Dark Crowns follows three sisters who are all born Queens. Each sister has her own “gift” (poisoner, naturalist or elemental) that she is taught to hone and strengthen in preparation for her sixteenth birthday. At sixteen all three girls essentially have one year to kill each other and the last one standing gets the throne. The first 80% of this book was a lot of C level world building and character fluff. It wasn’t until the last few chapters that we actually get some action and by that time I was just ready to be done with it. Sad as it is, I don’t think I’ll make the effort to continue this series. 2 out of 5 stars.
- The Gilded Hour – The Gilded Hour takes place in 1883 New York and revolves around two women doctors, Anna and Sophie. In addition to being women doctors, Anna and Sophie are also cousins. Anna, a white woman, and Sophie, a black woman, are both graduates of the Women’s Medical School, an extreme rarity for the 1800s. Seeing as this novel is a whopping 732 pages, a lot goes on. Racial identity, adoption, immigration, and women’s rights take center stage in a plot so full you feel as if you are standing on 5th Avenue It is so rare that I find a book that I am so completely engrossed in as I was with The Gilded Hour. The characters felt so fleshed out that I felt as if I actually knew Anna and Sophie. I could anticipate their reactions, their next moves, their thoughts, as only a best friend would. I could not recommend this historical fiction more, a very enthusiastic 5 out of 5 stars.
- A Court of Thorns and Roses – ACOTAR is the first book in Sarah Mass’ second YA series (the first being Throne of Glass which I burned through last month). We begin with our heroine named Feyre (pronounced Fay-ruh), a mere mortal in a country that is mostly populated by Fae. Only divided by a wall, the mortals are constantly in fear of the Fae crossing the wall and wiping our their race. Long story short, Feyre gets taken over to the Fae side of the wall after accidentally shooting a Fae in the forrest with an arrow and her punishment is to live out the rest of her days in the Fae lands. Enter Tamlin, a High Lord of the Fae who allows Feyre to live with him. Lots of drama happens between meeting Tamlin and the end of ACOTAR that I will withhold from telling you about for fear of spoilers. Just know that Feyre is a complete badass and you should not underestimate her potential. 4 out of 5 stars.
- A Court of Mist and Fury – Oh. My. God. I don’t remember the last time I read a YA book that I loved this much. For days after I finished ACOMAF I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Maas’ growth from the first Throne of Glass novel to Mist & Fury is incredible. Her characters are so fleshed out that you can feel the essence of them after just a few chapters. The dialogue is quick, the visuals are gorgeous and the relationships are rich. Mist & Fury primarily takes place at the mysterious Night Court after the aftermath of Thorns & Roses and I have no qualms about it. Thorns & Roses gave us Tamlin, Mist & Fury gives us Rhysand. I could write an entire separate post on the reasons Tamlin is problematic (control issues, trust issues, frail masculinity issues) but at the same time I could write a love letter as to why Rhysand is the polar opposite (encouraging, challenging, sees Feyre as AN EQUAL). If you want action, fantasy, challenging romantic relationships and a feminist storyline then this YA series is for you. I cannot wait for the upcoming four books in this series. 5 OUT OF 5 AMAZING STARS.
- Modern Romance – I love Aziz. I have to preface this review with that small fact because I came into this book knowing I had a huge positive bias toward my most cherished Tom Haverford. Modern Romance is not a memoir as many would think, but rather a research based look at love in the modern age. Backed up by research data compiled by some of the most reputable schools in the nation, MR does a deep dive on what it means to find your soulmate in the 21st century. While I wasn’t completely captivated by this book (non-fiction just isn’t my favorite genre) I did really love the tone Aziz and his co-authors took while delivering what could have been very sleepy material. 3.5 out of 5 stars.