As always, I will be talking about these books in order of my least favourite to my most favourite, but none of them were bad books!
I hate that She Who Became the Sun is my lowest rated book this month because there is still so much to love about it and I gave it a 3.25 on The Storygraph! Part one grabbed me right away and I instantly liked our main character and her life at the monastery having to hide her identity. It was part two that I struggled with and I felt lost a lot of the time. There are major time jumps and pivotal moments that happen off the page and it made me feel less connected to the characters. We are introduced to so many of them, it is hard to keep track! The last 25% was epic though, and I can definitely understand the Mulan and Song of Achilles comparison. I have heard that this is a duology and will definitely give the second book a try!
I absolutely love Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s writing and I had so much fun read Certain Dark Things! I thought the setting was perfect and her take on vampires was so original. The fact that there are different types of vampires was an intriguing premise that I wish had been explore a little more. I actually think that this story would have benefitted from being longer, especially since the romance was more at the forefront than I had expected. However, I do recommend Certain Dark Things if you love vampire stories and you are looking for a quick and fun read!
I was nervous going into For the Wolf because Red Riding Hood and Beauty and the Beast retellings can be hit or miss for me, especially when it comes to the romance. I wasn’t sure at first but I ended up getting on board with the love interest; however, it was the setting and the relationship between the sisters that really stood out to me! I am so intrigued by the magic and thrilled that Red’s sister seems to be the focus of the second book, as I was more intrigued by her character.
If you are looking for something whimsical, I highly recommend The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina. I was not expecting it to be a family saga, but it truly is. I love anything to do with complicated families, especially if there is touch of magic thrown into the mix. I appreciated that we got to see Orquidea’s family and their dynamics with her and one another while we also got flashback of Orquidea throughout her life. There are a lot of characters and we jump back and for quite a bit, but I really thought this was a special book!
I finally read Dracula and I am so happy to say that I loved it! I sometimes forget just how accessible classics can be! I love that the story is told through letters and journal entries- something about that adds to the tone and tension of the novel. It is also so interesting to think about it in context of the time it was written. There is a lot of commentary on modernization and womanhood, which I was not expecting. Also, these days we all know that Dracula is a vampire, but this is one of the first vampire novels and it is written in such a way that him being a vampire is a shocking reveal. I can only imagine how surprising that would have been for anyone who read this when it was first published!
I cannot stop talking about Summer Sons– it is just so good! This is dark academia at its finest and creepiest. It is set at Vanderbilt and our main character, Andrew, has lost his best friend to apparent suicide and he is struggling with his grief, which is a huge focus of the novel. Andrew can also see ghosts and is being haunted and finds himself in dangerous situations, often with a group of strangers who were acquainted with his best friend before his death. Some of it was predictable, but I cannot stop thinking about it!
Hold Back the Tide was such a surprise for me, especially since I read it on a whim! I will talk about this book until the end of time because it is so underrated. Talk about atmosphere! Also, I don’t often love books about monsters but this was everything I hope for when I pick up a monster novel. A perfect book to try if you are looking to get into horror.
It feels like I waited years for The Heart Principle and it was definitely worth the wait! This is the third book in The Kiss Quotient series and, while it is less focused on the romance, I think it might be my favourite. I felt an instant connection to Anna and loved seeing her find her voice and learning to say no. This book felt so deeply personal and I appreciated it so much!
Are we even surprised? Of course White Smoke is my favourite book of the month. This is Tiffany D. Jackson’s horror debut, and wow! I think it is best to go into this book knowing as little as possible and just going along with the ride. I say that about all of her books, but it is just true. If you like haunted house stories, pick this one up asap!
What was the best book you read in September?