I totally failed on this month's TBR, seeing as I only got around to one of the three books I'd 'planned' to read... but considering I also managed to finish a total of 10 books, I'm not feeling too ashamed.
Will have a full review up on my channel in the very near future.
I'd decided in my first quarterly wrap-up of the year that I wanted to try to get into more science fiction in the remainder of 2014. It was only natural that I start with a classic, and I'm so glad that I did! Dune is a masterpiece, and I'm so excited to get into more sci-fi. (I've even started watching Star Trek recently because I'm having Dune/sci-fi withdrawals and don't have access to the sequels! Not to mention the fact that my desktop wallpaper is still, weeks later, this gorgeous piece of Dune art.)
The One by Kiera Cass
Have a full written review that you can read here.
I've had a pretty weird relationship with the Selection Trilogy, and I'm glad to say that it's over. I'd read the first two books last year, and awarded them 3 stars and wasn't blown away by them. The One was a massive let down, and I was more annoyed than entertained by this installment. The world-building was non-existent. The plot resolution was nowhere to be found. The character 'development' in numerous characters was either implausible or contrived. All in all, disappointing but I wasn't expecting much to begin with.City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare
After reading The One I was in the mood for a "meh" book. It's a weird habit of mine, but sometimes I just read books that I'm not expecting to love but find easy to read. Call it masochistic, if you will. City of Ashes was my pick to suit that mood, and it worked. I've been wary of The Mortal Instruments for awhile (they read like HP fanfiction to me, which annoys me endlessly) but with the oncoming release of the final installment, it was a good time to pick these books up again.
Amulet, Volume 1: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi
My brother turned 9 this month, and he had no idea what he wanted from anyone (SHOCKER! Normally he has 500 video games on his wishlist) so I, of course, decided to get him books. I chose the first two volumes of Amulet, and wanted to read them before I gifted them. They were enjoyable reads. The art was well done, the story was pretty standard and rife with tropes, but for what it is... it's very good. My brother read volume one and enjoyed it - not sure if he's read volume two just yet! (He's obsessed with Minecraft fanfiction or whatever that stuff is called...)Amulet, Volume 2: The Stonekeeper’s Curse by Kazu Kibuishi
Don't really have much to say about the second volume in contrast to the first, but I did really enjoy some of the characters introduced (or fleshed out) in this second installment!
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
4.5 stars (rounded up to 5 on Goodreads)
At the time I read A Monster Calls, I was in the mood to read but not to commit. This was a good book to pick up, because it's quite a quick read. The illustrations in A Monster Calls are beautiful, as is the lesson it offers up to the reader. I wasn't terribly blown away by the writing style or the plot, but again, the themes of this book hit home and it accomplishes what it seeks to accomplish. Definitely have tissues on hand if you decide to pick this up. Even if you're like me and you knew what would happen in the end, it's not going to keep you from crying your eyes out.
Have a full written review that you can read here.
I was so excited to have been approved for an ARC on NetGalley of The Chronicle of Secret Riven, after having loved its predecessor, The Mapmaker's War. Unfortunately, as I stated in my review, the things that made The Mapmaker's War so great for me were lacking in this installment. While the character development was still great.. the story was lacking, the writing was indulgent, and there was too much of a disconnect between the two books. Still looking forward to the next book in the series, however.
City of Glass by Cassandra Clare
I decided to keep going with The Mortal Instruments series, and I haven't got much to say about the other installments. Of those that I've read at this point, this was my favorite... but only just. Hence the mere half star rating improvement.
I needed a quick book to read in-between the third and fourth books of The Mortal Instruments, and I'd just found The Rithmatist in the bargain section of Books-A-Million... so naturally I decided to pick this up. It was just what I needed! Brandon Sanderson is obviously an excellent writer, so no real complaints here. It didn't get five stars because the plot felt a little standard and predictable, the world-building was slightly lacking and I wasn't blown away by anything that happened... but it was a solid book, all-in-all.
City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare
Again, not much to say about another book from The Mortal Instruments. I had less of those pervasive "THIS IS JUST HP FANFICTION" thoughts, but the plot was so melodramatic that it didn't feel like an improvement at all. This actually gave me a bit of a book hangover, which made it hard to continue with the series. My plan to finish the series before the end of the month inevitably failed because of it.