Hi everyone! It’s almost July and you know what that means…I’m living through a massive heatwave right now oh my god.. (Kudos to my parents for buying me a fan, so I feel a little less as if I’m melting into a puddle!) Actually, it means it’s past the mid-year point! So, here I reflect on how this year has been for me so far in the realm of reading. Since I’ve edited this post, I actually am two books ahead of this screenshot (so, 17/30) but the 15/30 was actually very satisfying so I decided to keep it in for that reason 🙂
Best book you’ve read so far
I loved this book so much and read it in a day! Check out my review here.
Best sequel you’ve read so far
The only sequel I’ve read is New Moon… and it definitely wasn’t the best. So more like worst? It was just boring for the majority of the book, but it did pick up near the end!
New release you haven’t read yet but want to
I’m pretty behind on the new release train so a lot… I just started reading Rule of Wolves last night, though! I’ve heard a lot of mixed reviews, so I’m excited to see what I think of it. (I’ve narrowly avoided some spoilers)
Most anticipated release for the 2nd half of the year
I thought most of my anticipated releases had already come out, but then I remembered Any Where The Wind Blows by Rainbow Rowell*. After reading Wayward Son, I need to see how the heck this series is gonna end! A lot of people seemed frustrated with how it left Simon and Baz’s relationship, but I personally thought it was a very realistic sequel after the events of Carry On.
*Also just a note on Rainbow Rowell: a lot of readers have pointed out problematic aspects in her books like Eleanor & Park which you can read about here.
If you buy your books, I would recommend supporting own voices and marginalized authors where possible! If you’re interested in reading something from a problematic author, try an alternative like borrowing the book or buying second hand. Also, make sure you are taking steps to acknowledge any problematic content and read critically! Since this is a new release, I’m planning just to wait for it from the library. When I finally read it, I’ll probably also make a TikTok discussing my thoughts, along with the one issue I’ve noticed in the series so far.
I was just expecting a little more after I really enjoyed The Folk of the Air series, but unfortunately this wasn’t it. Read my review for The Darkest Part of the Forest here!
I hadn’t heard much at all about The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta before having to read it for class, but it pleasantly surprised me! It is written in prose as well which was different, and it was done so beautifully.
Favourite new author (debut or new to you)
I’m sure I’ll find one by the end of the year, but for now I’m not sure! I really loved Casey Mcquiston’s writing style in One Last Stop, but I think I’d have to read more from them to say if they are a new favourite or not! Also, I haven’t gotten to read These Violent Delights yet, but I already love the author, Chloe Gong, from watching her TikToks.
Newest Fictional Crush
Hmm no new ones really, but I started Rule of Wolves, and I’m very happy to be reunited with my favourite privateer turned demon-king, Nikolai Lanstov :))
Newest Favourite Character
Moony, Remu, “Casanova of Gryffindor Tower”, Remus Lupin… So, I fell into the big hole that is the marauders fandom this year, and to have Ron summarize what it’s been like:
It started with the occasional marauders edit or cosplay I found on my TikTok FYP, and then I found myself reading a 500K word fanfic… I can’t get over how insanely talented so many people in the fandom are in the content they create! It really is what makes me love the marauders so much. I wanted to pick one or two of my favourite TikToks/ creators to share, but I really couldn’t decide..so, I sorted my faves by if they’re happy (they just give me so much serotonin) or sad marauder videos:
What’s great is that there is so much left untouched in their story by JKR (as she’s a shit), and fans have just created their own headcanons and narratives on what the era was like. Although I always adored the marauders since I first was a young HP fan, (POA supremacy) being older and discovering the fandom, I have learned so much more. Especially in terms of Remus’s character, I learned how he was heavily queer-coded and that many fans find chronic illness/ pain representation in his character. (I learned about more problematic things JKR has done, like said that lycanthropy is a metaphor for HIV & AIDS…)
Though I already liked Remus’s character, the marauders fandom has added so much more depth to him and made him one of my favourites. (Did I just bomb this post with a tangent on the marauders? maybe..)
Book that made you cry
Parachutes by Kelly Yang (click the link to read my short Goodreads review!) While reading Dani’s story, I was rooting for her so hard, and I was so proud of her in the end that tears came to my eyes. Reading the author’s note further made me appreciate the hard work and emotional labour Yang put in to write the story, as it was influenced by her own experience with sexual assault.
Book that made you happy
My current read is One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston, and it has made me pretty happy so far! (hopefully still when I read the end..)The characters are really loveable, and there are so many moments they make me chuckle.
The most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)
I recently bought Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley and look at that gorgeous cover! 😍 I was gifted Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo which also has a pretty sick cover, but I especially adore the silver foil which is on the book beneath the dustjacket!
What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
Well, here’s just a sneak peak at my never ending TBR!
Book to movie adaptation
I don’t think I’ve watched any book to movie adaptations, but I did watch Shadow and Bone! While it is far from perfect, I did enjoy a lot, especially the visuals! While I didn’t love reading the Grisha trilogy, I think the show and the cast did a great job at bringing the world to life. Read more of my thoughts on the show here.
I also did a “mid-year check in” on my BookTok if you’d like to check that out! Anyways, hope you’re doing well and staying cool if you’re also stuck in the heatwave!