Mid-Year Reading Check, Part 1
Wow, 2022 is half over already! Can you believe it? This year seems to be flying by!
I’ve been seeing a trend on TikTok lately, the “mid-year reading check,” and thought it would make for a good blog post! (I already did a fun video on it.)
Let me go check Goodreads to refresh my memory . . . Okay, here’s what (fiction) I’ve read so far this year, in chronological order, with a bit of commentary about each book:
A Song Below Water by Bethany C. Morrow
Loved it!! The two main characters’ relationship is great, and I love Effie!! And Gargy. Yes, this book has a gargoyle character, which is awesome! Also, some aspects of the book remind me of my book (especially: a supernatural creature considered dangerous having to hide her identity from humans). It gave me a good look into racial issues in America, which of course involved some heart-wrenching parts and it made me angry how some people treated the girls. Oh, and I also appreciated the cool twist near the end. (I don’t mean Effie’s secret . . . I guessed that early on.)
The Wolf Gift by Anne Rice
I liked it, but not as much as I’d hoped. The pacing was a bit slow in places. To me, it seemed like just “rich people problems” since the main character is from an affluent family and doesn’t seem to go through any super-serious troubles. He’s bitten by a “werewolf” (they don’t call themselves that) BUT the transformation isn’t painful—rather, it’s closer to physical ecstasy when he changes. And he gains wonderful powers that don’t come with enough consequences, IMO. Also, he’s very attractive and loved by everyone, and he gets a beautiful girl. Poor him. ;P I can’t relate to the main character really in any way. But the book does get into some interesting philosophical/religious themes and is well written. It helped me understand Catholicism a little better, which I’m sure will aid me in writing my own Catholic main character, Melanie.
Silver by Cheree Alsop
You can totally tell this book is self-published. Typos and formatting issues abound. The plot and characters are pretty clichéd, and overall there’s not much to the book. I’m glad I got the e-book for free, and I won’t be reading the rest of the series. I only read this one to see what the hype was about.
This Is Not a Werewolf Story by Sandra Evans
Adored it!! This book does what The Wolf Gift doesn’t—and what I mean by that is: the main character, Raul, turns into a wolf painlessly, but he doesn’t have an ideal, easy life. Rather, he’s a “cast-off” kid living at a school full of orphans and other unwanted, troubled children. I just really want to hug this kid. His narrative voice is so distinct—wry and often amusing—and I relate to his awkwardness with other people and his loner nature. I also love how the story includes Native American shapeshifter lore. I was kind of disappointed at the bittersweet ending, but it makes sense / fits, and leaves things open for a sequel . . . please write a sequel, Ms. Evans!!!
Daughter of the Moon Goddess by Sue Lynn Tan
Beautiful and epic! I need the sequel (coming in November) now!! I love the gorgeous descriptions, the main character is well drawn, and the monster battles are so cool. The only nitpick I have is that the book is FULL of misplaced/dangling modifiers!!! Who edited it?? Anyway, I still adored the book and recommend it.
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
I absolutely love this book, even though there’s some clichéd dialogue and situations near the beginning. But the characters are all distinct, well developed, and likeable. Kaz’s plots are so clever and awesome to read about! It’s a fantasy heist with some very exciting scenes, yet not 100% a fast-paced thriller, as it includes a lot of flashbacks that develop the characters and reveal why they are the way they are and/or doing what they are doing. I don’t read a ton of books with antiheroes, but I love antiheroes (like Deadpool!) and I should read some more . . . like the sequel, Crooked Kingdom, which I did read—you can see what I thought about it next time.
This post is very long, so I’m breaking it in half. Next month, I’ll post Part 2 with the other six books I’ve read so far this year!
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Sarah Awa lives in Ohio with two hairy guys and writes books about werewolves.