Books

Book 615: Pride – Ibi Zoboi

It took a lot of effort not to read the Goodreads comments on this one. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to, but I knew I would get mad after I read the first one and it legit said “this is nothing like Pride and Prejudice, but maybe I’m wrong because I haven’t read it in a while.”

Don’t get me wrong, there are major deviations from Pride and Prejudice, but how could there not be. The OG is set in 1797, this is set in modern day Brooklyn (Bushwick, specifically). The OG is about decently rich (aka they own land and make money from others, but poor compared to the really rich) British family and their neighborhood and this is about poor Haitin-Dominican family and their neighborhood. OF COURSE THERE ARE GOING TO BE DIFFERENCES.

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Books

Book 613: A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic #3) – V.E. Schwab

Disappointment doesn’t even begin to cover my thoughts on this. Did it end the series well enough? Yes. Did it inspire me to read more of Schwab’s writing? No. Am I even more concerned that she is being compared to Diana Wynn Jones? YES.

A Gathering of Shadows and A Conjuring of Light aren’t so much book two and book three of the Shades of Magic trilogy as they are part one and part two of book two of the Shades of Magic duology. All three of the books in the “trilogy” take place in incredibly short amounts of time with a four month gap between one and two/three.

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Books

Book 611: A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic #2) – V.E. Schwab

Well, this one was stronger than A Darker Shade of Magic, but I’m still not on board with the “natural successor to Diana Wynne Jones” promo-ing in her bio. (But honestly, I can’t blame her, if someone said that about me I’d probably get it tattooed on my body.) Do I think she could get there? Probably. Is she there yet? Not yet based on these to books, but she wrote seven other books I’ve yet to read.

My largest critique of the books/series still stands: Is this an adult book or a young adult book? I honestly cannot tell. There’s no explicit sex, there’s not really that much violence, the language is pretty much G-rated, and the writing and plot are relatively simple and straight forward. There will be MAJOR spoilers in this review so don’t read past this if you don’t want to know.

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Books

Book 610: A Darker Shade of Magic (Shades of Magic #1) – V.E. Schwab

I picked this up after seeing it on LouLouReads’ blog. The title intrigued me and then I read the official blurb and was like okay I like this idea of parallel worlds I’ll give it a go. Thankfully, my local library had the first two and I got them the next day and the third had a very short wait list.

Like LouLouReads I agree that the book was rather one-dimensional to start. I do feel that it grew, but I’m not sure Schwab’s writing deserves the accolade touted in her bio, “the natural successor to Diana Wynne Jones.” Those are some huge shoes to fill that Shwab might be able to do some day.

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Books

Book 605: Almost Like Being in Love – Steve Kluger

I knew Tim didn’t read this blog, but I didn’t realize how little he paid attention to what I read. He recommended this after I basically forced him to read Check, Please! (#Hockey! #1) and the whole time I was reading this he was worried I would think it was too corny. And I kept telling him, PLEASE, you don’t even know how much I love this shit.

Almost Like Being in Love is the story of Travis and Craig told in a modern epistolary format, including internal memos, diaries, research requests, and eventually emails. From their budding love as seniors at a boarding school to 20 years later when Travis seeks Craig out after they grew apart when they went to separate colleges on opposite coasts in the US.

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Books

Book 599: Fence Vol. 2 (Fence #2) – C.S. Pacat, Johanna the Mad, and Joana LaFuente

Still not quite doing it for me. It’s interesting and a fun quick read, but it’s just not as good as the Bob’s Burgers comics I’ve been reading (here and here) or even the wonderful Check, Please!

For me, this series will be 100 times more powerful once it’s all released and it can be put into one compendium. The amount of time between my reading of Volume 1 and this one, and the time until Volume 3 is released will be too far.

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Books

Book 591: Fence Vol. 1 (Fence #1) – C.S. Pacat, Johanna the Mad, and Joana LaFuente

This one has been on my radar for a while, but it jumped up after someone posted the NPR article/review about Fence Vol. 2 on Facebook. I only read the first portion because I didn’t want to ruin anything in this volume or the next, so be warned!

Fence, Vol. 1 is the first four chapters of Pacat’s comic and it’s hard to say how much I liked it. I really enjoyed the illustration style of this and the story kept me engaged, but I’m realizing that I may be more of a graphic novel fan than a comic fan. That this was four issues and felt like it didn’t really get anywhere (even though it totally did) was problematic for my reading.

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