March was a pretty good reading month for me. I had a lot of 4 star reads and my first 5 star read of 2021! There were a few books this month that really took me a lot longer to read than normal. I also had a couple that I tore through in one sitting. I mostly kept within my comfort zone this month when it comes to genres and that may have lead me into the slump that I’ve been dealing with at the beginning of April. Let me know if any of these books are your favorites!
Shipped by Angie Hockman
This book is pitched as The Unhoneymooners meets The Hating Game which is what initially drew me to it. Unfortunately this book didn’t do either the beach getaway/forced proximity of The Unhoneymooners or the coworkers hate-to-love tropes of The Hating Game nearly as well. While I did find this book to be sweet and fun, I read this book at the beginning of March and I can’t remember anything about it other than the fact that the main characters go on a cruise. I initially gave this book 4 stars, but I think now that I have sat with it, it’s more of a 3 star.
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟
Grown by Tiffany D. Jackson
My Goodreads review for this book is just “oof, but in a good way” and that still sums up my feelings about this book. This was one of the stories that I tore through extremely quickly. This book speaks candidly about grooming and abuse within the entertainment industry. This is super important to shed light on, especially within the YA format. In this story, the main character, Enchanted, gets swept up into the entertainment industry by a powerful R&B star. With the promise of her own recording career being dangled over her head, she is easily taken in by this man. While I do think that the pacing of this book was a bit strange, overall the message is super important for teens to read.
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟½
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
This was the March pick for my book club and although it was pretty universally liked, we also didn’t have much to say about it. I thought that the concept was a fresh take on the idea of purgatory. It was an easy and enjoyable read and supplied some valuable commentary about living with regrets. While it did deal with some death and mental health issues, it did so tastefully. The ending wrapped itself up in a nice bow and overall this book did what it set out to do.
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟
When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole
I really wanted to love this one. The concept was so intriguing. It’s pitched as “Rear Window meets Get Out” and while this story had elements from both films, it failed to execute them in a successful way. The pacing of this book was very strange. The first 2/3 was extremely slow with a romance that was shoehorned in. The male lead made my skin crawl. I felt as though he was fetishizing Sydney and using performative allyship to try to earn her trust. I do think that Sydney’s comments about his eagerness to be seen as trustworthy is a stirring commentary about performative activism. While I really liked this concept, the story suffered because of the strange pacing. The ending happened all at once and I found myself wanting more from it. There was a lot of set up that felt unneccessary but at the same time there were lot of plot holes that needed more explanation.
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟
These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong
I chose to read this book mainly because the cover was beautiful. I know, I know, don’t judge a book by its cover. But it’s so pretty! I did put myself into a reading slump after this one though. I loved the world building and the descriptions of the setting. I thought that 1920s Shanghai really came to life. If this were adapted into a Netflix series, I would be the first one to watch it because I think the visuals are stunning. I just didn’t care about either of the main characters. I understand that the “Romeo and Juliet” aspect of it all hinges on miscommunication but oh my gosh? Just talk to each other? Fantasy continues to not be my thing and I keep trying YA fantasy hoping that it’ll be a little easier for me to digest. I have concluded that I can digest it fine, I just don’t like it. And the ending? If you know, you know, but wow I was pissed. I don’t see myself reading the sequel but I do want to know how it ends. 🤷🏻♀️
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟
Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Taylor Jenkins Reid has done it again. One of my favorite books that I read in 2020 was The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and it has become clear to me that I live for celebrity drama. While I do think that Evelyn Hugo does it a bit better, I tore through this book in one sitting. The coming-of-age story mixed with the drama of 1960s Hollywood was the perfect storm for me. I wanted to give this story 5 stars up until the very end. The ending was soooo rushed. There was so much time spent with these characters while they were in the band that the ending felt like an afterthought. It felt like a promo for “Where Are They Now?” but we never got the full episode . We only get one paragraph about Daisy and all of her successes after the band and I felt like she deserved a bit more than that.
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner
“A female apothecary secretly dispenses poisons to liberate women from the men who have wronged them.” A hell of a tag line. I will admit that the idea of this apothecary was too fun to pass up. While I enjoyed the story set in 1791, I was a bit bored with the story that takes place during present day. I was expecting more from the actual apothecary story and less time spent dealing with Caroline’s super shitty husband. The parallels were definitely there with the two stories, but there was some clunkiness that could have been ironed out.
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟
What a month. And what a slump I’ve been in since! Please send me some recommendations because my reading in April is so so dry. Did you love any of these books? Did you hate any of these books? Let me know! And thanks for reading. 📚