Show us your Books March 2018

Yay, book chat day!! ๐Ÿ™‚ We went without internet ALL weekend after a cable got disconnected during a snowstorm last week so I am rushing to get this posted today. My reading life has been all over the place – I’ve been trying to keep up with Netgalley and Erin’s challenge and books I have anticipated for months, but I also find myself craving some fluffy happily ever after stories on weekends when I’m relaxing. It’s a mix!

I can’t wait to see what everyone has been reading. Linking up today with Steph and Jana, our amazing hostesses ๐Ÿ™‚ Here are a few books I read in the past month or so since the last link up:


How to Walk AwayHow to Walk Away by Katherine Center
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

This book comes out May 15. I had extremely high expectations for this book because I absolutely adored Happiness for Beginners and though I haven’t read all of Katherine Center’s books yet, I have enjoyed many of the others as well. This book was just as great as I expected it to be. I think it claims my second spot out of her books because I just have such a strong adoration for Happiness for Beginners but this was still so great.

I am not ashamed to admit that I read it in one sitting on a rainy Sunday evening and loved every minute of it. It was more emotional (for me, at least) than Happiness for Beginners because the reality that the main character finds herself in is so devastating and hope seems to falter for quite a bit there.

As with many of her books, I loved the cast of characters. Her writing is so great and I found myself laughing and crying and deeply rooting for the characters. And of course, I was quite happy with the ending and all the feels ๐Ÿ™‚

I will absolutely be re-reading this one and adding a paper copy to my bookshelf in addition to this advanced copy provided to me by St. Martins Press and Netgalley. Thank you for the opportunity to read this book and share my opinions before its May publication – I follow Katherine Center on Instagram and I had been following her progress with this novel and waiting with bated breath to have these words in my life. 

The Woman in the WindowThe Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It feels like it’s been awhile since I read a psychological thriller after burning myself out on them a bit last year – but this one deserves all the hype. I spent most of the book not knowing exactly who or what to trust and the ending was particularly surprising to me – and intense too. The short chapters really make this one move quickly. I highly recommend this one if you like this genre – it was kind of a better version of The Girl on The Train (in my opinion) and the writing was very good.

HomegoingHomegoing by Yaa Gyasi
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

This isn’t a popular opinion but this book was difficult to read. It took me forever because I just never connected with the overall story and the format. However, I did enjoy many of the stories and the writing was wonderful…it just wasn’t enough to hold my interest over other books. I do think this is an important book and I’m glad I read it, but it was difficult to connect with because I would just be getting into a character and then their story was over. (Read for “home in the title” category for Erin’s challenge). 

Leaving EverestLeaving Everest by Megan Westfield
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

After loving Lessons in Gravity last year, I was really excited to see that Megan Westfield had a new book coming out. I was a bit hesitant about this subject matter because Everest is soooo grandiose and the magnitude of the mountain and the survival skills required to summit it freak me out a little bit BUT I needn’t fear because this book made me really appreciate and love the Everest life. Emily and Luke and the supporting characters were so fun to read about and I had read 60% of this book without even realizing it. I happily finished it off the next morning and am now looking forward to revisiting it soon. It was also great to see a slight mention of April and Josh from Lessons in Gravity.

Again, I was reminded that I like the new adult genre quite a bit, especially when it is done well. Thank you to Netgalley and Entangled Publishing for providing me with a copy of this for an honest review.

 When You Reach MeWhen You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved this audiobook and finished it quite quickly. It was a cute story about a 12 year old girl and her friends and there were elements of time travel, A Wrinkle in Time, learning about friendships and family, and some growing up. It was great.

Brown Girl DreamingBrown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This audiobook was incredible. Woodson’s storytelling is so riveting and it was a joy to listen to. I was completely invested in it and if anything, I wanted more. I think the format of this really lends itself well to an audiobook too – the poetic nature of the writing was a bit harder for me to read in print although it is still lovely. This had been on my TBR list for way too long (and in my audible queue) so I’m glad I finally made time for it.

 The Shadow of the Wind (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books,  #1)The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafรณn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wow – this audiobook was fantastic. This book will stay with me for a long time. I loved the language, the description of Barcelona, the mysterious story, the sadness, the emotions, and the love of books. This is an incredible story even though it was very dark at times. It reminded me a bit of The Book Thief for some reason (although meant for an adult audience) and it also reminded me a bit of The Count of Monte Cristo though that could be because the audio narration felt similar.


Force of Nature (Aaron Falk, #2)Force of Nature by Jane Harper
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

After loving The Dry (like many – it was so popular last year it seemed!), I was anticipating this book and it was another good one. I didn’t love it as much as her first book but I still found her writing to be absolutely captivating and all-consuming, particularly her description of setting. I really had no idea how this book would resolve and the ending was fast-paced and page-turning. I really like Aaron Falk as a character too and hope we see more of him in her future work.

The Phantom's ApprenticeThe Phantom’s Apprentice by Heather Webb
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I am very familiar with the musical of The Phantom of the Opera but have not read the original book. I’d say this novel did a wonderful job of encompassing the story and adding to it as well. It took me awhile to get into, and made me realize that probably my favourite part of the Phantom of the Opera is the music, because other parts of it are creepy (a ghost?! a stalker crazy ghost in an old building?! ahhh). I did really like this book though and if you are a huge fan of the original story, this would be worth your time to consider. It’s still set in historical times but the story is told a bit more from Christine’s perspective.

Thank you to Netgalley and Sonnet Press for providing me with an advanced copy of this novel for review. It is now available.

Death on the Nile (Hercule Poirot, #17)Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

While I still appreciate and admire Agatha Christie’s writing and I like Poirot as a character, this was not as good as I expected it to be. The cast of characters here was just unlikable to me and I found myself not really caring what happened to anyone. The mystery itself was also predictable. (Read for “setting = transportation” category of Erin’s challenge). 

By the BookBy the Book by Julia Sonneborn
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I had been anticipating this book for months because I love Persuasion AND I am generally a huge fan of many Austen retellings. While this fell a little flat for me, I still liked it. There were certain parts about it that I decidedly DID NOT like at all, but the ending was good and the characters were good enough and there were some cute parts. I liked the university setting and the supporting characters too.

Practice Makes PerfectPractice Makes Perfect by Julie James
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

This was really cute. I wouldn’t classify it as a P&P retelling at all but I did enjoy the mention of the book a few times. Way less drama than P&P in my opinion. haha. Passed the time nicely. Very similar to Dating You/Hating You in a lot of ways.

Other books I read and enjoyed but don’t feel the need to discuss in extreme detail:

I went on an R.S. Grey binge towards the end of my Kindle Unlimited free month and read Anything You Can Do, The Foxe and the Hound, The Allure of Julian LeFray, and The Allure of Dean Harper. Anything You Can Do is likely one of my favourites of hers – I love that type of love story and it was well done and funny. The others were all good and as I’ve said before, her books are like sitting down to watch a romantic comedy in book form. Somewhat forgettable after the fact, but so enjoyable in that moment. I also read Living Out Loud and it was 3/5 stars for me – I can’t wait for the second part of this S&S retelling. I read this book in one day and while it wasn’t my favourite, it was still cute. I also read and enjoyed the first in a trilogy by Susannah Nix (contemporary romance) about women who work in scientific fields. It was funny and cute.

What have you been reading lately?

I’m currently reading:

Educated by Tara Westover
First time reading the illustrated version! This is one of my favourites in the series so I am loving it. 

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