Book Review

Monthly Reading Wrap-Up: December 2022

It’s the end of 2022! And there were plenty of amazing reads this month. I loved my rereads and the many new books I came across too.

Favorites

Least Favorites

  • Morning Star (Reread)
  • Lightfall
  • ACOTAR Series (Reread)
  • A Holly Jilly Christmas
  • Sisters of Sword and Song
  • Before I Let Go
  • Fractured Sky
  • The Co-Op
  • Bloodsinger
  • Dear Emmie Blue
  • A Heart Worth Stealing
  • You Wouldn’t Dare
  • The Last Tale of the Flower Bride
  • A Wilderness of Stars
  • Beauty Reborn
  • The Syren’s Mutiny
  • Just My Type
  • Cotswolds Holiday (Christmas Escapes #1) by Kasey Stockton
  • [Reread] Morning Star (Red Rising Saga #3) by Pierce Brown
  • [ARC] You Wouldn’t Dare by Samantha Markum
  • Keeper of Enchanted Rooms (Whimbrel House #1) by Charlie N. Holmberg
  • Lightfall (The Starchaser Saga #4) by Renee Dugan
  • [Reread] A Court of Thorns and Roses (ACOTAR #1) by Sarah J. Maas
  • [ARC/Novella] A Holly Jilly Christmas (Sheet Cake Love Stories) by Emma St. Clair
  • The Key to My Heart by Lia Louis
  • Sisters of Sword and Song by Rebecca Ross
  • Fates Illuminated (Call of the Norns #1) by Aimee Vance
  • Before I Let Go (Skyland #1) by Kennedy Ryan
  • [Novella] Visions of You (Lost & Found #0.5) by Catherine Cowles
  • [Novella] Snowbound (Tattered & Torn #2.5) by Catherine Cowles
  • A Vision in Smoke (Until the Stars Are Dead #2) by Allyson S. Barkley
  • Fractured Sky (Tattered & Torn #5) by Catherine Cowles
  • [ARC] Never Vacation With Your Ex by Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka
  • [Reread] A Court of Mist and Fury (ACOTAR #2) by Sarah J. Maas
  • To Bleed A Crystal Bloom (Crystal Bloom #1) by Sarah A. Parker
  • [ARC] The Last Tale of the Flower Bride by Roshani Chokshi
  • Let it Snow by Michelle Stimpson
  • [Novella] A Very Merry Christmoose (Deadlights Cove #2.5) by B. Perkins and Aimee Vance
  • Esperance (Esperance Trilogy #1) by Heather Frost
  • [Reread] A Court of Wings and Ruin (ACOTAR #3) by Sarah J. Maas
  • A Wilderness of Stars by Shea Ernshaw
  • The Co-Op by Tarah Dewitt
  • Children of Ragnarok (The Runestone Saga #1) by Cinda Williams Chima
  • Two Wrongs Make a Right (The Wilmot Sisters #1) by Chloe Liese
  • Lord of Gold and Glory (Fae Isles #2) by Lisette Marshall
  • The Holly Dates by Brittainy Cherry
  • [Reread/Novella] A Court of Frost and Starlight (ACOTAR #3.5) by Sarah J. Maas
  • [Novella] Christmas Presents by Tarah Dewitt
  • 50 Ways to Win Back Your Lover (Bower Boys #1) by Kelly Siskind
  • Let Love In (Canyon Cove Love Stories #3) by Marie Soleil
  • Bloodsinger (The Starchaser Saga #5) by Renee Dugan
  • [ARC] Beauty Reborn by Elizabeth Lowham
  • [ARC] Off the Map (Beck Sisters #3) by Trish Doller
  • [Reread] A Court of Silver Flames (ACOTAR #4) by Sarah J. Maas
  • [ARC] Just My Type by Falon Ballard
  • [ARC] The Love Match by Priyanka Taslim
  • The Syren’s Mutiny by Jessica S. Taylor
  • Dear Emmie Blue by Lia Louis
  • [Novella] Falling in Somerset (Lost Story Bookshop) by Jenny B. Jones
  • [ARC] A Heart Worth Stealing by Joanna Barker

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Book Review

Book Review: Morning Star (Red Rising Saga #3) by Pierce Brown

Rating: ★★★★★
Audience: Sci-Fi
Length: 524 pages
Author: Pierce Brown
Publisher: Del Rey
Release Date: February 9th, 2016
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Red Rising thrilled readers and announced the presence of a talented new author. Golden Son changed the game and took the story of Darrow to the next level. Now comes the exhilarating conclusion to the Red Rising Trilogy: Morning Star.

Darrow would have lived in peace, but his enemies brought him war. The Gold overlords demanded his obedience, hanged his wife, and enslaved his people. But Darrow is determined to fight back. Risking everything to transform himself and breach Gold society, Darrow has battled to survive the cutthroat rivalries that breed Society’s mightiest warriors, climbed the ranks, and waited patiently to unleash the revolution that will tear the hierarchy apart from within.

Finally, the time has come.

But devotion to honor and hunger for vengeance run deep on both sides. Darrow and his comrades-in-arms face powerful enemies without scruple or mercy. Among them are some Darrow once considered friends. To win, Darrow will need to inspire those shackled in darkness to break their chains, unmake the world their cruel masters have built, and claim a destiny too long denied—and too glorious to surrender.

WHAT AN ENDING.

I never wrote a review for this when I first read it (after release), so I’m back with a quick jot down of my thoughts.

OH HOW I LOVE THIS SERIES EVEN AS IT TEARS MY HEART OUT.

There’s a plethora of amazing scenes here that I can’t even begin to name them all. And what I wouldn’t do to have Sevro’s POV in this book. THE THINGS I WOULD DO FOR THIS Y’ALL. He’s my favorite. And his love interest is perfect. Sevro still remains my favorite side character of all time.

I loved Darrow’s progression and character changes. He goes through hell and back 1,000 times and still gets up and does it again. All for the people he loves and the world he wants to see in a better place.

The audiobook is fantastic and I highly recommend that avenue.

I’d have a lot longer review but I really don’t want to spoil a thing about this because it’s better to experience it without prior knowledge.

JUST READ IT OKAY?

Overall audience notes:

  • Sci-Fi
  • Language: strong
  • Romance: closed door
  • Violence: very high
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: extremely high levels of blood and gore depiction, executions, suicide, loss of loved ones, mass murder, gun violence

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Book Review

Book Review: Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: Sci-Fi
Length: 476 pages
Author: Andy Weir
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Release Date: May 4th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Ryland Grace is the sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission–and if he fails, humanity and the Earth itself will perish.

Except that right now, he doesn’t know that. He can’t even remember his own name, let alone the nature of his assignment or how to complete it.

All he knows is that he’s been asleep for a very, very long time. And he’s just been awakened to find himself millions of miles from home, with nothing but two corpses for company.

His crewmates dead, his memories fuzzily returning, he realizes that an impossible task now confronts him. Alone on this tiny ship that’s been cobbled together by every government and space agency on the planet and hurled into the depths of space, it’s up to him to conquer an extinction-level threat to our species.

And thanks to an unexpected ally, he just might have a chance.

Part scientific mystery, part dazzling interstellar journey, Project Hail Mary is a tale of discovery, speculation, and survival to rival The Martian–while taking us to places it never dreamed of going.

ONE OF MY 2021 FAVORITES.

I can’t believe I had to have multiple people tell me to read this book before I did because OH MY GOSH I LOVED IT SO MUCH.

SO DANG MUCH.

READ IT.

And if you can get your hands on the audio book, HIGHLY recommend that avenue. The audio was one of the best I’ve ever listened to.

I’m trying to stay purposely pretty vague because it’s more fun going in blind on this one.

This book starts off wild and doesn’t let up. I loved moving back and forth between the present and the moments that Ryland started to remember what was happening. It’s intensely scientific and at times I felt smarter and dumber all in the same sentence, and I loved that.

Not to mention how much I loved the progression of the story and THAT ENDING. Apparently some didn’t love it? I couldn’t see it ending any other way for multiple reasons and thought it gave Ryland the right kind of conclusion. I felt even a little teary about it because it just clicked that well.

This book is laugh out loud funny. I couldn’t help myself with the laughter, it is spot on. I loved how this balanced out the heavy topics and things happening around Ryland. It was the perfect juxtaposition and wow I can’t give this book enough stars.

If I keep going I might spoil things, so trust me, if you got this far, READ THIS BOOK.

Overall audience notes:

  • Science Fiction
  • Language: some
  • Violence: small depictions of blood
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: discussion of suicide methods, apocalyptic scenarios, near death experiences

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Book Review

Book Review: Red Rising (Red Rising #1) by Pierce Brown

Rating: ★★★★★
Audience: Sci-Fi / Fantasy
Length: 382 pages
Author: Pierce Brown
Publisher: Del Rey
Release Date: January 28th, 2014
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.

Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity’s overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies… even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.

AS ALWAYS, GOOD.

This is a reread review! I never reviewed it formally when I first read it in 2016 so what better time to write one now?

I LOVE this series. Especially the first three books. I surprised myself with how much I remembered about Red Rising and it goes to show how incredible Pierce Brown is at crafting a story that left such an impression that it is still memorable years later.

Darrow’s rise to the top contains such character depth that I can’t get enough. Anything to do with character growth is automatically a win in my book and I loved seeing his progression. Sevro is FOREVER AND EVER one of my top side characters ever and it was great seeing him at his wild beginnings.

I do remember wishing there was a touch more romance. I adore Mustang and her fierce yet kind nature. She makes the hard choices, but actually holds onto some humanity in doing so.

The villains are making themselves known and I am here for it. These are some of the most wicked and deep antagonists I’ve come across. I love the academy setting and how it really builds the rest of the series.

Can’t wait to continue this reread!

Overall audience notes:

  • Sci-Fi / Fantasy
  • Language: strong
  • Romance: kisses
  • Violence: very high and graphic
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: mentions of rape and sexual assault, murder, physical altercations, executions, loss of a spouse, near death experiences, weapons altercations

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