Allgemein, Bookish Fox Knowledge

July Wrap-Up

Wrap Up

So July was a … weird month for me. On the one hand I got a lot of reading done and on the other hand I barely read anything close to the end of the month. I usually don’t tend to write about things like that but my kid and I were at the hospital because she had some sort of seizure. We had to wait for the test results and of course I was worried sick. >_< By now we finally got them though and they were pretty unsuspicious. This is great news, but we still don’t know what caused her to spasm in the first place.  I really hope that it was a one time thing and that it will never happen again… because hell, I was so freaking scared and I don’t EVER want to see my kid like that again. (Sorry for being so blunt and frank here.) So basically the last few days have been some of the worst of my entire life which is the reason I was barely active on here. *takes a deep breath*

Okay, enough of the serious things. Let’s focus on the good things like the fact that my kid told me she loves me and that I reached 300 followers. (which is another huge milestone of my blog) This time around I’ll go for a give-away because I can finally go to the post office again and my drawing of Hermione took way too long. I mean I got 50 more subscribers before I was even able to post it. XD Still, I’m glad so many of you seemed to like it! ❤

And before I forget to mention it: I managed to connect my flickr account to my wordpress page! (Took me long enough to figure out how to do it and I think this might actually qualify for another round of my blog tutorial post „Explain & Gain“. ) So now you can see my flickr gallery at the sidebar of my blog and are able to take a closer look at my photography too. Since I don’t have Instagram, Twitter or any other social media page I figured to link flickr would be a good idea. 😉

This said, let’s go for my monthly Wrap-Up and take a closer look at the books I discovered:

Books read:(7 books &webcomic)

Pages read:  2.420 (As it seems I’m still on a roll and reading a lot of books. Maybe it’s my library that always wants them back and forces me to read them faster. *lol*)

Average rating: 4,13 (Lots of 4 paw ratings this month but only 1 five paws read and this one was EVERYTHING!!! ❤ )

Books that were on my reading list:  2 (from 2019 and 1 from 2020. Hey, at least I manage to read one book from 2020. 😛 )

July Reads:

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To Kill a Kingdom: 4 Pfoten

This was exactly the kind of bloodthirsty and dark retelling of „Ariel – The Little Mermaid“ I craved for. I had to listen to the Disney version way too often and needed something different to appreciate it again. Thankfully this was exactly what I hoped for and now I can sing „Under the Sea“ with a lot of enthusiasm again. (My kid just loves Ariel and I needed a new spin… badly! *lol*) Also Lira and Elian were quite the pair. 😉

Birthday: 4 Pfoten

I finally wanted to read a book with a good transgender rep and I think „Birthday“ did a really great job. I felt with Morgan and it hurt to see her troubles and how she tried to fit in. Eric was more than just sweet and I loved their friendship so much! ❤ What really got to me was the homophobia in this book though. It was so hurtful to see it through Morgan’s eyes and there were times I just wanted Eric’s father to shut up. >_< Still, this was a great rep and I think that it was own voices made it even more tangible.

Radiance: 4 Pfoten

Now that was an interesting romance and something entirely different. I loved how Brishen and Ildiko had insta-friendship instead of insta-love and their honesty made me laugh so much. Those two were brutally honest about their repulsive appearances and considering that both of their species had a different beauty ideal this was super refreshing. Their humour and their love was amazing and I’m already looking forward to book two. =)

An Exaltation of Larks: 5 Pfoten

One of THE BEST BOOKS EVER!!! ❤ Seriously, if I could marry this book I’d do it without hesitation. I loved this so much!!! I mean we have 3 characters, a few decades, historical background stories like the disappeared of Chile and 9/11, an LGBTQ+ rep, easy banter, Spanish and lots of love! GAH! „An Exaltation of Larks“ was just so good!!! I’ll never stop raving about this book and if you want to know more, you can read my review here! (I’ll most likely try to persuade people to read this until I die! *lol*)

Fangs: 4 Pfoten

This was more some sort of sequential art than a webcomic and I really enjoyed it. The love story between Elsie and Jimmy was really cute and I enjoyed the idea of a vampire dating a werewolf. It makes for a lot of funny situations and they were explored really nicely. Just in case you want to know a little bit more: I wrote a short review on goodreads. 😀

The Lost Hero: 4 Pfoten

I love Uncle Ricks books and this was no exception to the rule. XD There were so many new characters and the plot sounds really interesting so I’m definitely looking forward to continue with this series. My favourite, of course, was Leo Valdez though. *lol* And Will Solace. Damn, I really wish we’d get more of him and speaking of characters I want more of: Percy and Nico di Angelo!!! I want to see more of my precious boys! ❤

Every Day: 4 Pfoten

Oh wow! This book posed so many questions. It’s hard to describe the plot, but it basically comes down to the fact that A. lives a different life every day because A. travels from one body to the next and only spends 24 hours in every body she/he inhabits. One day A. falls in love with a girl though and that’s where the story begins. I’m still not over the knot that became my brain while I read this and I think this book will give me a lot to think about for quite a while. It’s one of those reads that don’t leave you once you finished them. XD If you want to read my review you can do it on goodreads! Also I just realized there’s a movie to go with the book and I’ll try my best to borrow it from the library. 😀

Syrian Brides: 4 Pfoten

This was a nice collection of short stories about Syrian women that are either getting married or have already been married for a while. Some of the stories were very serious and others were amusing, they all had one thing in common though: They gave me a good glimpse at Syrian culture. So I definitely learned that Syrian women are very subtle and deal with their problems in clever and creative ways. *lol*

Rankenzeile

How was your July? Did you read a lot of books and how is your blog going? Do you feel pressured into reading by books that need to go back to the library soon? Did you notice that I added my flickr gallery to wordpress? Are you going to participate in my give-away and how is the current COVID situation at your country? And most importantly: Can I get a hug? (I really need one. ❤ )

Talk to me and let me know!

 

*hugs’n’kisses*

Sig.V.Ronan

The Sassy Library Fox

 

A, A - E, Allgemein, Reviews

ARC Review: An Exaltation of Larks (Suanne Laqueur)

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Rating: 5 Pfoten

*A forever grateful thank you to NetGalley and “Cathedral Rock Press” for providing a free ARC*

”They shared breath, poised on a shared edge, shaking all their separate pieces into one.”

Do you know the kind of book that swallows you whole? That makes you want to pick it up even though it’s in the middle of the night and you just closed it. The sort of story that takes over your mind, body and soul? The kind that makes you restless and achy with the need to continue? This special sort of book that touches you on such a profound and fundamental level your heart quite literally bursts from hurting, but, boy it hurts so good?!

“An Exaltation of Larks” was everything of the above and so, so, so much more! I had no idea what I was getting myself into until it was already too late. Until I found myself so deeply immersed in this story that it seemed to be impossible to get away from its words. They followed me around, taunted me, teased me, wanted to be read with such a relentless fervour that I couldn’t even think about uttering the word “no”.

”All his movements were clumsy and reluctant. His fingers balked at tying his sneakers. Turned locks the wrong way while opening the door. He stumbled going down the hall and the elevator door banged him on the elbow as it was closing.
He didn’t want to go.”

That’s exactly how this book made me feel and even after finishing it two weeks ago it still didn’t let me go. This story swept me off my feet, dug its claws into my skin and sang me to sleep. And to be entirely honest, this effect is still going on. By now I think “An Exaltation of Larks” was written to bury itself in my soul so that I would never feel alone again. And if that is truly the case, then all I can say is that it can have every inch of my heart it conquered.

”Many people like being alone, but nobody likes to be lonely.”

There are so many things I loved about this book, so many in fact that I don’t even know where to start. I adored Val and Alex, I worshipped Jav, whose character was so similar to mine that it sometimes felt like torture to read on. I connected with him on such a basic level that it killed me to accompany him on his difficult journey. But just like him I longed for more and no matter how much I got, I just couldn’t get enough. Of the strong friendships in this book, of the relationships between the characters, of the family they became. I swear the relationships in this book were everything!!! Just everything!! The humour, the banter, I loved how they joked, how comfortable they were around each other, how effortlessly those two families merged into one.

”Te lo agradezco mucho,” Alex said.
“You don’t have to thank me.”
“No sé cómo agradecértelo.”
“Stop.” Jav kissed his head. “You guys are my family. I’d do anything.”
He kissed Val’s head. Then six arms wove and wrapped and they held each other tight.

There are three people that found each other because they were meant to, because destiny had chosen them before they even knew it themselves and they love each other so deeply, so madly, so unconditionally that it broke my heart. The way Suanne let them deal with their troubles, how they acted around each other, how they were angry and mad but still so very much in love. How they fought for their love, how they realized that they had to accept their feelings with all their consequences, weaknesses and flaws. It just blew me away!! Suanne can write! And it’s so convincing, so realistic that it killed me. The chemistry of those characters, the cozy atmosphere, the strong feeling of belonging, of kinship and above all else the affection and love that connects them all.

”It’s not the Larks that kill you. It’s the exaltation.”

I swear at times I was so overwhelmed with emotion that I felt so fragile you could have shattered me with a soft breeze. Val’s and Alex’s marriage was so wonderful, yet I also loved the idea of Alex and Jav. To be entirely honest, the mere thought of all of them together kind of blew my mind and I suppose in some way or another those three actually kind of were in some sort of relationship. They were so connected, it was hard to even imagine them not being involved with each other and their children Ari and Deane only seemed to add to that intense sensation of all-encompassing love.

”I want you to be all right. I wanted that long before all this other stuff showed up. I wanted you to stay in Guelisten, I wanted my home to be your home. A place where you feel good. A place you can come as yourself and bring along your happiness and your pain. I wanted you around since the beginning.”

Of course none of those characters had it easy, because as we all know life may be described with an abundance of words but “easy” is certainly none of them. This said there are quite a lot of serious topics that are tackled by Suanne and they were woven so gently into the rug of this story that you don’t know where the seam begins or ends. They are as much a part of the book as they are a part of the characters and I’m still in awe of the author’s ability to let those stories speak for themselves. “The Disappeared” of Chile, 9/11 and its effects, the way our family and our personal history shapes us. I’m not ashamed to admit that I cried throughout the entire chapter that dealt with 9/11 and that the only thing that made it better was to remind myself of the things that are good in this world. Namely, a short peek at my kid while she was fast asleep in her bed. This chapter wrecked me, big time, as did so many other moments in this book… ¡Vale! I just had to take a deep breath because my emotions are still all over the place and I’m pretty certain this will never change.

”It caught Jav under the ribs and his teeth trembled together. He felt the ground tilt beneath his feet. His heart flailed, making desperate minute adjustments, frantically trying to find center. Find his way home, even as home insisted it was here. Right here in this house. With Alex.”

4

So this was my rather futile attempt to convey how much this book means to me and I can’t help but feel like I failed miserably. There is no way to put all of those emotions into words and if I’d live a million years I still wouldn’t be able to describe this painful contentment that I feel. “Therapy Fiction”, “Contemporary Train Wreck”, “Emotionally Intelligent Romance” those are all terms that are used to describe Suanne’s books. Well, I guess I have a new one for you: “Heart-breaking Realism”.

Make of that what you want, but I can guarantee you one thing: If you read this, you will never be the same again. All the paws! All the paws, por siempre jamás! ❤