In today’s video, I review my February reads and update you on my Julianne Vs TBR project, which is not going well…
Books mentioned and mini-reviews:
Jem and The Holograms: Dimensions
This is a collection of short comics by different writers and artists – it’s really cute and nice to see different takes on the art style. I definitely have a preference for Sophie Campbell’s art on Jem and The Holograms in the first two books, but it was still really cool to see a different range of artists and their take on the same characters.
A Perfect Paris Christmas by Mandy Baggot
This is the second Mandy Baggot book I’ve read and now I think I am a Mandy Baggot fan girl! I want to read all her back catalogue, I think she’s a really great romance writer. Her characters are so realistic, with full lives outside the romance. They have jobs that they care about and families they care about and it just makes them seem such wonderful 3D people! A Perfect Paris Christmas is about a woman who goes to Paris just before Christmas to meet the mother of her kidney donor, and while she’s there, meets and starts to fall for her donor’s best friend, who is struggling to adjust to life without her. It’s just gorgeous.
Romancing Mr Bridgerton by Julia Quinn
I had high hopes for this one as it’s many people’s favourite Bridgerton book but it just couldn’t compare to An Offer From a Gentleman in my opinion! It was still perfectly readable and compulsive reading, up until the marriage proposal, and then I found myself losing interest. Unfortunately I just wasn’t as invested in the story as I wanted to be.
Rescue Me by Sarra Manning
This is an absolute delight, a funny, lovely romance about a man and a woman who co-adopt a dog. She definitely wants to adopt, he’s just hoping to volunteer – but they both fall in love with Blossom, a shy little Staffy who needs patience and care. As they rehabilitate Blossom and work out how to share her, they start to develop feelings for each other, but are those feelings compatible? Sarra just gets better and better with every book. It was a dream and I will definitely read it again.
Violette Around the World , Vol. 1: My Head in the Clouds! by Teresa Radice and Stefano Turconi
This is a graphic novel about a girl who lives with a traveling circus. It’s quite cute and while in Paris she meets Toulouse Lautrec which is funny, but it was missing any spark that would have made me love it. I think if I had read this as a child, I would have loved the idea but not the execution.
Buy: Bookshop.org (affiliate links)
Conspiracy of Ravens by Leah Moore, John Reppion and Sally Jane Thompson
Another graphic novel, this one has beautiful art, but the story felt very rushed and I longed for it to be longer. It’s about a girl at a boarding school who inherits a locket and a mansion from an aunt that she didn’t know existed. Her parents want her to sell it as quickly as possible, but then she starts having these weird experiences with birds, developing magical powers. Eventually she finds out that she and a bunch of other girls are the descendants of an all-woman secret organization. It’s a great premise, but I felt like I didn’t really get to know any of the characters, as there’s so much plot and too few pages to explore it!
The Lottery and Other Stories by Shirley Jackson
This is just as brilliant as you’ve heard – the stories are really varied, some of them have a strong plot but most of them are vignettes which make you think. I really liked that because that’s the kind of short story that I struggle with and these were such perfect examples.
The Way Past Winter by Kiran Millwood Hargrave
This is a middle-grade fairy tale about a girl who sets out on a quest to save her brother from the Bear, a powerful being who controls the woods and the weather. It’s a lovely kids adventure and quite a quick audiobook – I wanted something short and seasonal and this was perfect!