June was a decent month reading-wise. Personally, it was not so great. My grandma was in hospital for a week, and she has to go back to have surgery on her neck. Then I got very very sick. As a result, I haven’t written as many reviews as I had hoped to in my weeks off. Here’s hoping July is better.
What I read
Victoria the Queen by Julia Baird ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
This was a great general biography of Queen Victoria from birth to death. I think as a primer it is an excellent starting point. It was well researched and very easy to read.
The Candle and the Flame by Nafiza Azad ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
There was so much to love about this book! It had a bit of everything: Djinn, racial and religious diversity, an enthralling plot, complex interesting characters, as well as a slow burn romance. I highly recommend.
Teeth in the Mist by Dawn Kurtagich DNF 51%
In this retelling of Faust, we follow three female MCs living in different centuries who all have a connection to Mill House. The atmosphere was creepy, and initially I was really interested in the unfolding mystery. By time I got half way not much had happened and I was getting bored.
The Black Tides of Heaven by JY Yang ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I’m not sure how to describe this book, but I’ll try. It’s about twins who are children of the Protector, the ruler of the land. But it’s also about power, both political and magical, which is concentrated in the upper classes. There’s magic and rebellion. There’s also LGBT+ representation: children are genderless, and eventually make the choice to become male or female.
Descendant of the Crane by Joan He ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
This Chinese inspired fantasy was a completely addictive read. I finished it in two sessions, which is almost unheard of for me. It had a bit of everything: a murder mystery, forbidden magic, court politics, the looming threat of war, complicated family dynamics, a legal trial…
Miranda in Milan by Katharine Duckett DNF 32%
This was a YA novella based on Shakespeare’s The Tempest. It was more of a sequel than a retelling, set in Milan after Miranda and her father, Prospero, have returned triumphant from exile. It promises a mystery and a f/f relationship. I found the dialogue was stilted and there was little suspense despite the supposed mystery.
Wicked Fox by Kat Cho ⭐️⭐️⭐️💫
As a fan of Korean dramas, I was super excited for this. I won’t say that I was disappointed, but it was very predictable to someone who has watched a lot of dramas and knows a lot about Korean mythology. It was an entertaining read, and I’d still recommend it.
Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett
This is the third Discworld novel, and the first featuring the Witches. The basic story involves a wizard passing his powers to an eight son of an eight son… only it’s not a son, it’s actually a daughter.
Albert: A Life by Jules Stewart
Continuing my reading about the Victorian era, I’m halfway through a biography about Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria. He was a fascinating man, and very talented.
What I watched
Good Omens ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
The scenes between Michael Sheen and David Tennant really made this tv adaptation truly marvellous.
Victoria (season 3) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I love this series so much, and I can’t wait for season 4. I find Victoria and Albert absolutely fascinating, both individually and as a couple.
Avengers: Endgame ⭐️⭐️⭐️
I admit, I bawled my eyes out watching this. But afterwards I felt sort of disappointed. I don’t think this movie was as clever and well crafted as Infinity War, and there are a lot of plot holes. It feels like the writers completely undid all the amazing set up they previously did, and Thanos went from being a complex bad guy, to a cardboard cut out villain.
Kinky Boots ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Catch up on my blog
Blog Posts I Liked
To be clear, I liked a lot more posts than this. I just don’t feel well and I’m rushing to finish this wrap up.
Check Your Ability: On Ownvoices Disability Representation by Shri @ Sun and Chai, featuring Sabina Post and Lillie Lainoff
This is probably my favourite post of the year. It’s a discussion covering a lot of related topics around disability representation in fiction and being a disabled author. I’m not doing it justice, but it is fantastic, and you should read it.
This was such a unique and fun post to read. CW tried food mentioned in the anthology, and shares the experience with the reader. I’ve never come across anything quite like it, but I devoured every word (ha ha, I’m so funny.)