My Latest Reading List – June 2020

I am currently reading a book that requires a lot of concentration and I can’t read it at the speed that I usually read books because then I will miss a lot of the info. That means that my next reading list (after this post) might either be a while from now or it may a have few books in it. Let’s see what the future holds.

All of the below books are available on Amazon and Kindle.

A Brush With the Moon by Raquel Lyon (Book 1 in the Fox Blood series)

About the book

Sophie’s finally happy. Away from home & back with her best friend, she’s doing the one thing in the world she loves, art. Life’s perfect, or is it? Something’s strange about her new home. People are dying; an old house pulls her towards its doors. Sophie’s changing too; is it the recent fox bite? All becomes clear when she meets the seductive Sebastian and learns his family’s secret.

My Thoughts:

I loved the way that Raquel build a world that had me wandering around it and not wanting to leave. I loved the characters and the different relationship dynamics and how they all worked together. World building is definitely her niche. The world was basically the same as the traditional fantasy world that most authors use but different in somehow.

The only problem I had was that none of the story lines came to fruition in this book which left me a little frustrated and in the air. Usually when an author does that, I won’t buy the next book out of principle but I couldn’t resist. I read this book in 11 hours, I struggled to put it down, even at 3 am this morning.

Another note to this book…I thought that the blurb didn’t fully give the book justice. It was very vague. I actually got this book because of the cover and not the blurb.

Rise of the Hellion by Raquel Lyon (Book 2 in the Fox Blood series)

About the book

Something’s stalking Sophie and it’s not just her boyfriend’s cute cousin.

Continuing the story from A Brush with the Moon, Sophie is settled in her new life. Things are going well. She’s enjoying university life and her newly found independence. That is…until her mother’s unwelcome arrival!
Her love life has certainly improved, but that has brought about its own complications. Her new boyfriend, Sebastian, is not human and, as if that weren’t enough, his cousin, Connor, won’t take no for an answer. Sophie must decide which is stronger, her loyalty to Sebastian or her growing feelings for Connor.

And love is not Sophie’s only battle. Pulled from a life of obscurity and chosen to succeed a dying Goddess, the girl that arrived in Fosswell is no longer visible. Along with her new power and appearance changes, Sophie now has to contend with unwanted night time transformations. Can she learn to control the animal inside? More to the point, can she hide the supernatural world from her mother?

The death count in Fosswell is mounting and when someone she knows is found dead and someone she loves gets the blame, Sophie is determined to find out the truth. Unfortunately, the truth is sometimes something we don’t want to hear.

My thoughts:

Once again I lost myself in the world created by Raquel. I got very little answers to all the questions from book 1 and then had even more questions now in book 2.

The storylines did not reach any type of ending which has left me frustrated and in the air again. I am concerned that if I get book 3, my questions to all the story beats that were left in the air, will still not be answered.

The story is brilliant though and still had me hooked for a few hours.

Fall From Grace by Raquel Lyon (Book 3 in the Fox Blood series)

About the book

Girl or goddess? Sophie has a decision to make.

With the supernatural world in a state of unrest, and her feelings for Connor intensifying, Sophie’s life is out of control. She needs to get it back. But no matter how hard she tries, her desire to do what is right is faltering.
Life is complicated.

Is the chance of happiness really worth destroying her future?
One thing is certain. To realise her destiny, she must leave behind everything she loves.

My thoughts:

Didn’t like the way she suddenly only wanted Con and suddenly not Seb. I could understand loving both and not wanting to lose either, but you don’t even see her struggle with her feelings for both, she zones straight into Con. My impression of her changes without me even noticing and makes her look a bit cheap.

I’m disappointed with how it ended. It was an anti-climax. Even though I enjoyed the world that Raquel had built, I was glad to leave it behind after book 3 which is not how it should work. I was actually angry at the end of reading the book.

Not all questions where answered and not all story lines where ended off. It feels like there should be another book with explanations.

Fat Girl by K.L. Montgomery (Book 0.5 of Romance in Rehoboth series)

About the book

Claire Sterling wants a new body to go along with her new life.

She’s used to roller coasters. Her weight has been on one for years, and now her entire life is flying off the track. Divorcing in the wake of her husband’s affair, moving back home to the Delaware beaches,landing her dream writing gig, braving the online dating world, and facing the big 4-0 are enough to make anyone’s head spin. Claire knows her future happiness depends on her ability to reinvent herself. But one fear is standing in her way: that she’s forever destined to be a fat girl.

My thoughts:

The negative part first…sometimes the ‘descriptions’ get a little too much, they’re in almost every line. Although, even though they are quite a lot, they are quite brilliant too.

Now for the positive… Fat Girl had me laughing and giggling so often that I felt uplifted after reading it. I even found myself reading slower so that it didn’t finish too quickly.

I love how K.L. Montgomery wrote a body positive book without being depressing or offensive. I enjoyed the pieces that were from her column and I absolutely loved the way the book was written as a blog.

Being a ‘Fat girl’ myself, I could understand how she felt. The constant fight with wanting to be better, but not wanting to actually do the exercise to get there. Loving food to the point of no return and having to have serious discussions with yourself to put the caramel down! Reminding yourself that you need to stop wishing and make it happen!

I felt like I learnt something after reading this book, even though it wasn’t a self help book. Well done K.L. Montgomery, well done indeed!

Your Voice, My Strength and Other Stories by Raashida Khan

About the book

Every tale in this delightful collection of short stories and flash fiction is a wonder … sometimes compelling … sometimes hopeful … sometimes intriguing … sometimes playful … sometimes whimsical … sometimes painful … but always thought-provoking and insightful. The stories are as much for entertainment as they are a commentary on themes and issues relevant to South African society.

Raashida Khan has gifted her readers with a peek into her writing mind and creative soul. She gives depth of reality to her characters as we are drawn into their worlds. The plots are masterfully woven in settings that are instantly recognisable. The only thing you will regret is reaching the end of the book. But be assured … the book will remain with you for a long time after you have put it down.”Raashida Khan’s collection of short stories is interesting and thought-provoking. It upholds the entertainment value of stories, but she does not abdicate her role as a social commentator. Artists are, by and large, shaped by the environment in which they exist – either inspired by it or in reaction to it.

Khan’s writing shows that, while South Africa may have the most liberal constitution on earth, we are far from being a normal society. We are still confronted with such issues as religious intolerance, sexism, racism, and many other societal challenges. Please, do yourself a favour and reach out for this smorgasbord of stories, an exquisite and most welcome addition to the body of South African fiction.”- Fred Khumalo, Author 

My thoughts:

For a Muslim reader, I think they will thoroughly enjoy reading these short stories because they have quite a few about Muslim women, children and men. It was interesting seeing the culture from the point of view of a Muslim woman.

The fact that Raashida covered quite a few subjects that are difficult for anyone to face, especially, it seems; Muslims and still made it interesting, deserves a hand.

I also take my hat off to Raashida for writing about a child of a different race and culture to her own and I feel like she nailed it.

Some of the stories I wanted more than was given and think that a longer book could be written using them.

I also think the cover is beautiful and colourful.

All in all it was a good read. Well done to Raashida for a brilliant short story collection.

That’s it from me for now…

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