Book 23: The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

Atwood, Margaret - The Handmaid's TaleI can’t believe it’s been over five years since I last read this incredible novel. But thinking about it as I write this I’m not too surprised. I last read this while working on a paper for my MA and that paper didn’t go well, because I apparently didn’t “understand how to apply gender theory” and I was given the opportunity to completely re-write the paper.

I was incredibly pissed at the insult, because that’s how I took it, and I spent a lot of time rewriting the paper in such a way as to insult my professors and the program. In no uncertain terms I stated that gender theory does not preempt every other theory and that scholars needed to be incredibly careful of over-stepping their bounds. I did eventually receive a passing grade and they invited back to pursue a PhD (I declined), but it left a sour taste in my mouth.

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Book 7: Inferno (Robert Langdon #4) – Dan Brown

Brown, Dan - InfernoThis is the fourth book in the Robert Langdon series and Brown’s sixth novel. As with the others, this is exactly what it sets out to be: a page turning action and adventure novel that although not a literary wonder Inferno does make you wonder about major societal and environmental issues. The entire story takes place in less than 24 hours with flashbacks to two days before.

The only other Robert Langdon novel I’ve read since starting this blog is the third installment The Lost Symbol. I’ve read all of Brown’s books and enjoy them for what they are and don’t judge them harshly like it seems most people do. I remember reading The Da Vinci Code the summer between high school and college and immediately going out to find copies of Angels and Demons, Digital Fortress and Deception Point. (Call it my hipster moment, but I read it BEFORE it took off.)

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Book 72: The House of Hades (The Heroes of Olympus #4) – Rick Riordan

Riordan, Rick - The House of HadesIn this, the penultimate novel of The Heroes of Olympus, Rick Riordan sets the scene for a HUGE finale in the last and final book. I’ve had my name on the wait list for this book since I finished The Mark of Athena back in February or whenever the library first let me add my name to the list and I will do the same thing with the final installment, The Blood of Olympus.

This book picks up right where The Mark of Athena left off and keeps filling up details and providing more and more tension before everything snaps between Gaea and the demigods and gods. To be fair the series could end with this book and I wouldn’t be mad as there was a pretty succinct ending to this novel versus many of the other cliff hangers I’ve read before like that at the end of the last novel. This one although much sadder, the characters and readers of the series are growing up, was much more encapsulated.

THERE WILL BE SPOILERS so if you plan on reading these books, I would not recommend reading after this point. There might not be any for this book, but there may be for earlier books in the story, but no promises – this is the fourth book in the series.

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Book 69: The Demigod Diaries (The Heroes of Olympus) – Rick Riordan

Riordan, Rick - The Demigod DiariesThis is the second collection of short stories Riordan released in his Greco-Roman young adult series. I actually preferred this collection to the first, The Demigod Files, but I think that comes from the length of the stories and the inclusion of the final story in this selection by Riordan’s son, Haley. In addition this was the 18th library book I’ve read this year, which is pretty impressive for me and I’m excited to be supporting the library more and more these days.

The four short stories in this collection are The Diary of Luke Castellan, Percy Jackson and the Staff of Hermes, Leo Valdez and the Quest for Buford and Son of Magic. Each one of these stories stands out and included different characters which I think is why I enjoyed this collection better than the first, but as mentioned above Son of Magic is what made this collection.

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Book 67: The Demigod Files (Percy Jackson & the Olympians) – Rick Riordan

Riordan, Rick - The Demigod FilesThis was a super short collection of short stories and various add ons to the Percy Jackson universe and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m picking up the other short story collection for The Heroes of Olympus series Riordan wrote and can’t wait to read it.

There were three short stories in this book: Percy Jackson and the Stolen ChariotPercy Jackson and the Bronze Dragon, and Percy Jackson and the Sword of Hades. Each one had characters from the Percy Jackson universe that you love, or love to hate and the writing was just as creative and humorous as that in the full length novels. In addition to this, the book is set up as a how-to/introduction guide to Camp Half-Blood and included add-ons about some of the campers, a map of camp, a packing list (diagram) and brief bios of many of the campers and key gods of Olympus.

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