Hello all! Welcome to my (as ever, very late) February Wrap-up. During the month of February, I managed to read 5 books – 2 graphic novels and 3 novels, one of which I gave 5 stars and will be adding to my favourites list! I’m quite pleased with my effort! Without further ado, here is what I read:
1. The Walking Dead Vol. 4: The Heart’s Desire by Robert Kirkman
I wasn’t a huge fan of The Heart’s Desire. There was a lot of drama in these issues: relationship drama, alpha male drama, more death (of course). But I don’t think that added to the social commentary. It just felt like a soap opera. The female characters are portrayed so badly, it pains me. For instance, the group opt to be led by a committee. Of four MEN. Rick, the main character (who was passed out at the time of said group’s conception) wakes up to the news and remarks, “No women?” and I let out a sigh of relief that the comic is somewhat self-aware. But the response turned my relief into sadness, then confusion, then utter bewilderment; the response being, “No, that’s how THEY wanted it.” I’m unsure as to why Robert Kirkman thinks all women want is “to be protected”. Despite the inherent misogyny, The Walking Dead nevertheless continues to intrigue me; it has sucked me in, so to speak, and I kind of can’t stop reading them. The introduction of a character called Michonne will hopefully change the current dynamic of the group. I do want to see where the story will go next and I really want to find out what happens to Rick and the gang as they navigate this new world. 2/5
2. The Walking Dead Vol. 5 : The Best Defense by Robert Kirkman
As I said before, I want to keep reading The Walking Dead despite its issues. In this volume, you knew right away that things were going to go badly. And I mean very badly. So badly in fact, that I wasn’t emotionally prepared at all. And coming from me, that’s saying something. This volume was brutal and while it was nice (definitely not the word I’d use to describe any part of this volume by the way) to move away from the soap opera drama and back to the dark, gritty zombie apocalypse, I still think there is room for improvement. The Walking Dead’s dialogue isn’t fantastically written and it really shows in this volume. I found it rather jarring and not at all like actual, believable speech. Though, the introduction of a villain (and a truly psychotic one at that) gives me hope for the direction of these graphic novels. I mean, how does one even have a villain during the zombie apocalypse? But, you know what? It works and I’m quite excited for the next volume. 3/5
3. The Desert Spear by Peter V. Brett
The second book in the The Demon Cycle introduces another point-of-view character through whom we see the way another part of the world deals with the demons.While it was good to get background on this character, I wasn’t impressed by the fact that the first third of this book was spent on this one character. Not only that, but the author kept jumping throughout his timeline. This led to a lot of confusion and I was left thinking things like, ‘Wait, is he a child in this bit? Oh, yep, he is. That makes a lot more sense now…” etc. It took me quite a long time to read the first 200 pages or so, but then I breezed through the rest once the other POVs came back into play. The story was interesting and engaging in the latter two thirds of the book. I really enjoyed the ending; the Demon Cycle continues to surprise me and the story doesn’t go where I expect it to, which in this case is a good thing. Overall, despite the blip at the beginning, this was a solid follow-up to the first book and I am very excited about reading the third in this series. 4/5
4. Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan
I picked this book from my Kindle TBR Jar. I must admit, I wasn’t expecting much from it as I’m not that big a fan of John Green’s writing (with the exception of An Abundance of Katherines, but I know I’m in the minority with that opinion…) however I was intrigued as I’ve never read anything by Levithan before. I was pleasantly surprised, once I got into the story, I found I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would. Each author wrote alternating chapters from the first person POV of two boys with the same name (in case you didn’t work it out, that name is Will Grayson). You really see the differences in their personalities through this format and I’m really glad I read this; despite being a mood reader, it was nice to try something different. 4/5
5. The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart
This book was read for the February Library Scavenger Hunt challenge which was to read a book with a preposition in the title. I had remembered that Fran (of Jar of Books) had recommended this book some months ago and thought I’d try it. That recommendation was a good one. A great one, in fact. A story that on the surface explores the idea of high school cliques, romances and rich kids, this book also examines societal norms, gender roles and feminism. The writing was superb and there is very witty dialogue. The protagonist is incredible and her character development is wonderful. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and initially gave it 4 stars, but after pondering a while, realised why I was wrong to do so. This book is going on my favourites shelf because I want to read it again straight away. I think I was being a bit of a genre snob as my heart usually belongs to the wonderful world of fantasy. But this book is superb and I would really recommend it. 5/5
And now for the Kindle TBR Jar book for March!
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell!
I’m quite excited to read this book. I haven’t read anything by Rowell yet and that is one of my reading resolutions this year, so it’s perfect! Keep an eye out for my mini-review in my next wrap-up.
That’s all from me. Thank you for reading!