Saturday, May 6, 2017

April Favourites

April was a such a great reading month for me. Two weeks of school holidays meant extra reading time and I finally got my YA mojo back (after spending most of 2016 reading adult fiction titles). I saw a few of my goodreads friends reading some of my fave YA titles, which gave me reading envy and set me off on a bit of a reread binge of some old fave contemporary YA titles and it was perfectly like visiting with old friends.

April book total: 16
Books: 12 (including 4 rereads)
Audiobooks: 4

Fave read of April:

A List of Cages by Robin Roe
A List of Cages was heartcrushingly good. I knew very little about this book when I started (and I do recommend knowing little ~ so many reviews are absolutely spoilery) and I really did not expect the characters to win me other so completely.

If I were to make a word cloud of this book, included would be: hopeful, tense, devastating, brotherhood, secrets, cute, tears, powerful, smiley.

The seriousness of the subject matter is perfectly balanced with the levity of an outstanding cast of characters who were fun to hang out with and also reminded me of the life-changing power of teenagers who are awesome and stand up to make a difference. I rarely cry actual tears while reading but it was impossible to stay dry-eyed during A List of Cages.

Fave audiobook:

Highly Illogical Behaviour by John Corey Whaley
This was pretty cute and entertaining as an audiobook with dual narrators who definitely brought the story to life. I enjoyed the humour, pop culture nerdy/sci-fi references, and the underlying tension of the premise. I'm not sure I would have read this in book format, but the audio was good, light reading experience that kept me engaged.

Other recommendations:

Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett was an entertaining YA read that was cute and addictive with a summer boardwalk/theme park(ish) setting that felt alive and surprisingly unique (the whole cave/museum thing was great). It didn't personally get me swooning but it did keep me smiling and I think you may find a lot to love if you're looking for a new cute summer-love YA read.

Making Faces by Amy Harmon: I like the way Harmon writes and this story had a great message (that did not take over the narrative) with heartache, swooning, humour, and unexpected twists and turns. I didn't love it as much as I loved her fantasy The Bird and The Sword but it was an absorbing and worthwhile read that didn't shy away from hard topics. I liked the timeline of this book which spanned from early childhood, through high school and into early adulthood. If the premise appeals to you definitely give this a go :)

The Impostor Queen by Sarah Fine I was both captivated and intermittently frustrated with this original YA fantasy. I loved the world building and characters and the slow burn romance was also believable and satisfying, as was the unique and intriguing features of Fine's world. The only thing holding me back from listing this as a new fave were these weird pacing lulls where I would disengage with the story while waiting for things to keep moving. This complaint is more telling about me as a fantasy reader than the novel itself (I can be unfairly impatient with fantasy at times).

It Ends With Us is the first Colleen Hoover book I have read and I can see her widespread appeal. Hoover has a seamless writing style that drew me in and kept me turning the pages through the night. It was so easy to engage with her characters and get swept into the story. I knew little about this story going in and for that I am so glad (DO NOT read reviews of this one as I loved the way I was taken by surprise). This story was not what I expected> I was hoping for a kind of guilty pleasure, swoony, mindless read but this ended up being quite powerful and affecting. I would love any other Colleen Hoover recommendations as her backlist is rather intimidating and I have no idea where to start. I am not generally a fan of angsty YA/NA novels, but always a fan of absorbing books with captivating characters :)

What's the latest book you've read and loved?

:) Nomes

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