Saturday, November 2, 2013

October Wrap Up

I cannot believe it is the end of the month already! October is always wonderful, I love the fall time and Halloween especially is a favorite of mine. This month I didn't get through quite as many books as I'd anticipated, but I did really enjoy the books that I read this month in my spooky filled picks.

Strands of Bronze and Gold by Jane Nickerson
This was my first read of the month and it feels so long ago that I'd almost forgotten it. However, I was really excited for this book to come up ever since I'd noticed it on Goodreads. This Bluebeard retelling perfectly fit the month- creepy, a dark and mysterious setting, and complex characters. It was so well written that I couldn't put the book down- I highly recommend this. It's the only Bluebeard retelling I've stumbled across and I thoroughly enjoyed the intricate character development and the eerie feeling that increased page by page. I gave this 5 full stars, so be on the lookout for a 5 Star Spotlight or a Stand Alone and Shine focus on this in the future.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern 
I wrote a 5 Star Spotlight on this already and I can honestly say that it is one of my favorite reads of the year. I'm not going to go on and on about it because it's already on the separate review and also I'm probably going to include it in a favorite books of the year wrap up sometime in December. I loved it and obviously gave this book 5 stars, although I will admit that I got so engrossed in this book I ended up reading it super slowly so I didn't get to all the books in my TBR pile. But I don't regret it since this was such a great read!


The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black
This was the book to get me out of my book nostalgia. I read this one very quickly-only a day, really. I really enjoyed it. The basic premise is that the main character, Tana, is partying it up at a friend's house and wakes up in the bathtub the next day. Everyone is dead. The only people she can find are her ex-boyfriend, gagged and tied up, and a vampire also tied up in the same room as her ex. The vampires here were a mix of old classic vampire characteristics with some fresh ideas from the author. Tana was a great character. She was determined and strong while trying to protect everyone and save them all. I really enjoyed her parts, but this novel also had something in common with The Night Circus, that being a different character POV for every chapter. Most of it was Tana's perspective, but other characters were featured, with many valuable flashback chapters that really served to develop the characters. I really appreciated the chapters because they weren't overdone but added depth to the story. I did only give this book 4 stars. To me, Gavriel was the most interesting character in the book and I loved reading scenes with him. I think the book was great already, but I missed Gavriel in it. That just goes to show how amazing Holly Black's characters are. This book is not indicated as part of a series on Goodreads, but I think the ending is open enough to hopefully have a sequel. I loved this world and I would love to read more of it and see what else happens!

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
This book is something I've started before and set down, and I'm really glad I read through it this month. It's incredibly well written and really puts you into the mindset of the character, which was actually a problem for me in the beginning because the protagonist, Jacob, had such a dreary life. However, as I read on the book got more interesting and intense and this really unique world developed. Extraordinary powers are nothing new to the literary world, but this book made a very interesting world with some very ingenious plot and character developments. I loved seeing Jacob develop as a character. I'm not going to lie in the beginning I put the book down because he seemed trapped in this dull world that you feel like you're there with him and it isn't pretty. But when this story takes off it goes flying and I'm really happy I read this. A sequel is planned for sometime next year I gave this book 5 stars on Goodreads, but I would really say that it's 4.5 stars. I liked this a lot and am looking forward to the sequel.

Asylum by Madeline Rioux
I have to say, as Halloween drew closer I had been saving this book for a spooky reading finale. I was sadly disappointed. Honestly, I did not end up finishing Asylum. I did get over halfway through (189 out of 310 pages) and the story was still not grabbing me. To begin, my original main problem was the formatting of the book. Granted, I had just read Miss Peregrine's which is very similar with the vintage photography and details. However, in Asylum the pictures would often not correlate to the what was going on in the story, with randomly inserted picture, or the author would go into specific detail about aspects of a photo that were not actually present in the photo given. If you have a copy, you can see some of my complaints for example a random photo on page 79. The random photos I could've dealt with, but when specific detail was given on photos that were totally different, I began to see a problem. For example, on page 44 the room described bears little resemblance to the photo given. But, those quirks that annoyed me aside, the story failed to grab me. Don't get me wrong it wasn't a terrible story and if you're interested in the book I would recommend at least checking it out in the bookstore to see if it's more to your taste, but it didn't appeal to me. The scary factors felt a little cliche to me, and I didn't connect to the characters. That being said, I did read through it easily enough, I mean I got through over half of the book pretty quickly. It just wasn't something that engrossed me or kept me interested, so I put the book down in favor of starting Percy Jackson earlier. I might pick Asylum up again during my end of the year reading wrap up, but at this point it's not a top priority for me.

So there are the books I read in October. Only 4.5 books, but November is going to be jam packed, so stay tuned for an exciting TBR!

From a paper world, 

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