March Wrap-Up & April TBR

I don’t even know where to begin with the month that was March, so let’s usher in April here!

πŸ“ŒΒ fairy godmother’s blessing: I read a lot more books than previous months, so there is hope I can get back reading skills!
πŸ“Œ fairy godmother’s blessing: Sha has returned to the blog! Like a child sticking its foot into the ocean for the first time, she is slowly inching her way back into BPR activities. (And for anyone still unsure, she is firmly planted in Canada once more.)
πŸ“Œ evil stepmother’s curse: I’m currently in self quarantine, and like, I want to go everywhere in the world???

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EMOJI KEY
🌈 = LGBTQ+ rep
🌱 = Mental Health rep
🌻 = POC rep
✨ = Disability, LD, Chronic Condition rep

Visit ourΒ Royal LibraryΒ to find a complete listing of reviews on BPR, divided by genre with a key for notable representation.

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The Light in Hidden Places by Sharon Cameron
N/A
Emoji Key: n/a
I didn’t think much of this book, since I hadn’t heard of it at all. However, this book was a whirlwind of emotions and intensity. It was so incredible and showed the amazing strength – emotional, physical, and more of our heroine. It’s based on a true story, so the stakes are somehow even higher???


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Heartstopper Volume 2 by Alice Oseman
N/A
Emoji Key: 🌈
This wasn’t as amazing as the first one, but it was still pretty good. I felt like the content was a little drawn out on this one. It’s still an fantastic series, and I love the drawing, the content, and the romance. Still a very solid entry in the series, but I just wanted a bit more.Β 


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Heartstopper Volume 3 by Alice Oseman
N/A
Emoji Key: 🌈 🌱
This volume definitely found its stride again. I really enjoyed this one – I loved the trip, I loved the romance, I loved the addition of more mental health issues. Again, this is such an amazing graphic novel series, and I need volume 4 STAT.


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Kingdom of Back by Marie Lu
YARC
Emoji Key: n/a
I was a little apprehensive of what Lu’s writing would be like in this fantasy and historical fiction novel – but she did amazing. The lush, immersive world was incredible, and the characterization was amazing. The perfect book for women’s month!


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In the Role of Brie Hutchens…by Nicole Melleby
N/A
Emoji Key: 🌈
I loved Melleby’s debut novel last week, and this follow-up did not disappoint! There were a few bumps at first, but this book was incredible in characterization and heart. Ugh, I love Brie and her journey so much – and you will too.


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Unscripted by Nicole Kronzer
Popsugar Reading Challenge
Emoji Key: 🌈🌻
This book is so underrated – and I was totally in that category. It was so close to perfect, and it was a book of healing, strength, and my favorite: sisterhood. The sisterhood in this story was all the love. If I had to champion one book for Women’s Month, this is it.Β 


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Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly
Audiobook Challenge
Emoji Key: n/a
So continues my month of feminist books that have absolutely killed it. Sha recommended this book for me, and she was right. I loved the retelling aspects as one of the Ugly Stepsister reclaimed her power, her heart, and more. A few bumps, but overall, a delight.


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Pan’s Labyrinth by Guillermo del Toro & Cornelia Funke
Audiobook Challenge
Emoji Key: 🌻
I wanted a short audiobook read, and this dark, haunting novel was such an intriguing read. I didn’t fully connect all with it, but even if you haven’t seen the movie, this was a lush, captivating story.

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booklows

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Watch Hollow by Gregory Funaro
Audiobook Challenge
Emoji Key: n/a
This book was…well, it was a book. I honestly don’t have much to say about it all, besides that it existed. It happened. I listened to it. It went by fast? It did have a cool atmosphere, though?


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Midsummer’s Mayhem by Rajani LaRocca
YARC
Emoji Key: 🌻
I was super excited for this one, because I love baking and A Midsummer’s Night Dream, but this was kind of a mess? I couldn’t connect to any of the characters, and the lack of the context of the original story confused me.


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Tigers, Not Daughters by Samantha Mabry
N/A
Emoji Key: 🌻
Yet another magical realism book that just did okay for me. There were some great parts to this one – and yes, it did feel atmospheric, but I totally failed to fully connect with it. It was messy and real, but it wasn’t quite the ghost story I had in mind.


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Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse
Popsugar Reading Challenge
Emoji Key: 🌻
RR Presents has been giving me some highs, but unfortunately, this was one of the lows. I wanted to love this so much, but the formula and the cookie cutter characters caused me not to connect to anything and find myself bored.Β 


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Nevertell by Katharine Orton
N/A
Emoji Key: n/a
Why were all of my middle grade reads such a mess this month??? I love a good MG book full of whimsy, but this just felt like a cold blustery wind that never worked for me. It was definitely provided mood, but I just wish it was more.


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What I Like About You by Marisa Kanter
N/A
Emoji Key: n/a
This had some super high highs and super low lows for me. Seriously, there was much goodness, but then there was some badness??? I don’t know how to even quite articulate how I feel, but it ended up just being overall a good read but not great.


49200879. sx318 Mananaland by Pam Munoz Ryan
Audiobook Challenge
Emoji Key: 🌻
This was…well, it was an enchanting metaphor for immigration, and it was a great way to introduce children to the topic. However, our main character was kind of a mess and it was just a lackluster read.

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nonbookishnews

πŸ“Œ Well, um, yeah, this is definitely a way different month than last one. It’s crazy just how fast the spread of COVID-19 spread. It wasn’t really even on my radar, and then March happened, and dear gosh. Our thoughts are with you and your loved ones at this time, and we hope you are staying safe! I’m currently self quarantine here at the house since I can do almost all of my job from home, and I’ve never had a stronger desire to go outside than I do now. But staying safe is the main priority here, so every few days, I gaze out a window and realize that the world does, in fact, still exist.

πŸ“Œ Since me and the fam are in self quarantine, I’ve had a lot of time to catch up on my shows and discover a few new ones. I’m officially done with The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and it’s amazing but my heart is too much??? THAT ENDING. I’m not ready. I binge watched all of Veep, which is an incredible show, and always manages to make me chuckle once per episode, which honestly is a miracle. It’s a show of incredible writing, for sure. I also binge watched all of Disney Fairytale Weddings, and y’all, I’ve discovered my new ultimate dream job besides working in book publicity. It’s so magical, and I want to cry every episode????? It might have also prompted my post for Disneyland Rides as YA Books post. I also watched Frozen 2, which was…well, it was good, but not greatness. I wrote a review of it here.

πŸ“Œ We also announced the introduction of more regular middle grade content on the blog. Mondays will be the day to get either some mini MG reviews or a review of an upcoming MG ARC. They will probably be every other Monday, but I’m dedicated to getting more MG books on my TBR and devouring them whole. As you can see, I definitely tackled a few this month – and I have a lot waiting for me on my currently closed library’s shelves. I also created a handy dandy guide to starting with the genre that you can check out here.

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As you can see here, I literally have no clue what I’m going to be reading this month. My reading has been so scattered lately, and with everything going on, I’m really going to be relying on my physical TBR and what my library offers digitally. Sooooo…I guess we shall see?

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What do you think? What books did you read last month? Did we share any of the same?Β 

mandy

26 thoughts on “March Wrap-Up & April TBR

  1. Great wrap up!! I’ve had my eye on The Kingdom of Back and Marie Lu’s other books… since i have yet to read any yet hhaa! Stepsister and Heartstopper I have also been hearing a lot about. I hope you enjoy Maybe Than Maybe, I look forward to hearing what you think about it! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m super excited to read Incendiary, Lobizona and Love from A to Z too! Stepsister is also on my TBR I’m dying to read it as I love retellings. Sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy Race to the Sun, I was looking forward to that.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I still really need to read Heartstopper and The Kingdom of Black! Also, I’m looking forward to more middle grade content πŸ˜„!

    It’s so surreal how fast everything has progressed lately πŸ˜•. Stay safe and well, both of you πŸ™‚πŸ’–.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ah, I’m sorry that COVID-19 has affected your life this way :(( Hopefully we’re allowed to leave self-quarantine soon! Also, I’m shooketh at how many books you read this month πŸ˜… Sadly, I haven’t read any of them, but I am very excited to continue the Heartstopper series!

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  5. Great wrap up Mandy! Glad you’re being safe right now. I am worried about “tigers, not daughters.” While I love the author’s writing style, I never connected with her previous book and I’m hoping I like her new one more. Also, so glad you liked “Stepsister”! I really loved her redemption arc and how it was a different take on the story. You also brought “the light in hidden places” to my attention now πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

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