Allgemein, Bookish Fox Knowledge

June Wrap-Up

Wrap Up

I think I haven’t read that many books for ages. *lol* Well, at least I can’t remember the last time I actually managed to read 8 books in a month. Certainly not ever since I started to do my monthly wrap-ups. XD So I guess book-wise my June was amazing! I suppose to commute to work more regularly might have helped to get back into my reading swing which is a really nice side-effect I never truly noticed.

Unfortunately commuting also caused me to visit my library more often and my borrowed books almost push the allowed boundaries of 25 items. (At the moment I have 22 books at home and my library pile never seems to get any smaller. >_<) I know I’m way too greedy but I just couldn’t resist all the amazing LGBTQ+ books I found on the shelves. 😛 As it seems our libraries are finally jumping on the train and I couldn’t be more happy to see so many of my beloved books. They finally get more new books in other genres as well and this is just awesome.

So yeah, I think my library pile won’t get smaller anytime soon. *lol* And speaking of LGBTQ+ books! I finally created my own The LGBTQ+ Rep Book Tag (Original!) and I’m so glad so many of you seemed to like it! ❤ A few of you already did it as well and I got a lot of new book recommendations I can’t wait to read. XD Thank you so much for doing my tag and for spreading the love! 😀 This means a lot to me and I love you guys so much! ❤

*clears throat* Erm yeah, before I go all soppy on you I better start with my Wrap-Up, okay?

Books read: 10 (books &webcomic)

Pages read:  2.452 (Yes, as usual I didn’t count the webcomic pages so that’s the actual page number only from the books. XD)

Average rating: 4,10 (Not bad! Guess ACOFAS is the only reason it wasn’t higher. *lol*)

Books that were on my reading list:  2 (from 2019 and 1 from 2020, Funnily enough I’m close to finishing my reading list 2019 but not even moderately close to reading the books from my 2020 list! C’est la vie! 😛 )

June Reads:

20887238. sy475      18248613    42635580
43347332. sy475      36048256. sy475     33413128. sy475
42191365. sy475      20913559

Traitor’s Blade: 4 Pfoten

I’m so glad my „Hugs’n’kisses OR Dismissed by the Missus/Messrs“ blog meme caused me to read this because otherwise it would have stayed on my TBR forever and I would have never gone on that interesting journey! XD  I really liked Falcio and his two friends Brasti and Kest! Also I kinda loved that this was different than the other fantasy books I read?! The ending might have been a little abrupt but the rest was great! Can’t wait to read book two!

Warm Up: 4 Pfoten

This was only an additional short story to „Vicious“ but since it’s written by V.E. Schwab I enjoyed it immensely. This woman can write and just like with Maggie Stiefvater I’d even buy her grocery list. *lol* Those about 15 pages may not add a lot to the plot but the tension of the main character was amazingly done. 😀

Vengeful: 5 Pfoten

I just loved this!! It was so, so, so good! ❤ Seriously, If I wouldn’t have been Victor Vale trash already this book would have made me Victor Vale trash through and through. XD The chemistry between Vic and Eli is off the charts and I still think they would have made a great couple. *lol* Also I loved the female villains in this book and I was glad to see that they were able to hold their own against our two boys!

Bomb Boy: 4 Pfoten

Jay Grewal offered me to read his book about a year ago and I finally got to it!!! (Guess this says A LOT about my long ARC/review copy list and why I’m not accepting any until the beginning of next year >_<) Anyway, I loved Jay’s book and even though it was very painful to read I couldn’t help but admire the way he wrote it. This is one of those books that stays with you and the comparison to „The Kite Runner“ is getting pretty close. If you want to read more about „Bomb Boy“ you can do it here!

A Court of Frost and Starlight: 3 Pfoten

Me only giving ACOFAS 3 stars!!?? Yeah, I know that’s kind of a shocker but urgh there were so many things that rubbed me the wrong way, I just couldn’t help but write a super long rant review! *lol* I won’t go into detail here but if you actually want to know why I was so disappointed you might as well read my full review! I wasn’t all too kind (and that’s an understatement) though so don’t attack me with your pitchforks and torches, okay? *lol*

Always Human: 4 Pfoten

This was such a cute webcomic! ❤ I called it „the f/f answer to Heartstopper“ and I still stand by this first impression. XD Sunati and Austen where the cutest, the art was amazing and very colourful and the story just warmed my heart! If you’re looking for a sweet f/f webcomic you should definitely give this one a try!

Beartown: 5 Pfoten

There are books and then there are BOOKS!! This one belongs to the latter category and it totally destroyed me. I can’t even remember how often I flat out cried or at least had tears in my eyes while I read it. „Beartown“ is one of those books that leaves a mark and changes you while you read it. Every single sentence hurt, every page cut deep, and every paragraph let me lose hope in humanity and rebuilt it once again. Yet I still loved it! It will take me quite a while until I’ll be ready to pick up „Us Against You“ but damn, I’m so going to read this sequel even if it kills me. T_T

Black: Shades of your Soul: 4 Pfoten

Can you believe it? I finally managed to read another book for my „German speaking Authors Year“ challenge! YAY! I admit it, I was a little bit sloppy those last few months because our current global situation kinda made me a mood reader and I really couldn’t bring myself to read books according to plan. So yeah, it took me a while to get back to my initial plans but I don’t regret it because this was great! I paged through „Shades of your Soul“ in no time and I really didn’t know that German authors could write such great steamy mafia romances. *lol* If you speak German and want to read something addicting and fast this might be the right book for you! 😉 (Be careful though, the insta-love is strong in this one. XD)

Burial Rites: 4 Pfoten

This book is inspired by true happenings and it was quite an experience. Iceland in 1829 must have been a hell of a place to live at and I really loved all the detail that went into this story. Also this is a book that kinda sneaks up on you and then leaves you gasping for air. When I started to read it I was like: „okay, that’s interesting and nice but where is the gripping story I was promised?“ You won’t get action, you won’t get shocking events, but you’ll get the life story of a poor girl that had to survive the cold of Iceland. I never thought I’d cry at the ending of this book, but I did and it killed me. >_<

Where Tangents Meet: 4 Pfoten

This was another cute and fluffy webcomic! 😀 This time around actually an f/m one and I really loved it! ❤ Landon and Rachelle both carried some wounds from their past with them, but they learned to trust each other and they fell in love! Also the sibling relationships in this one were great and the art?! Amazing! Highly recommended!

Rankenzeile
How was your June? Did you read more books than usually as well? What’s the limit of your library card and are you constantly pushing it too? Did you like my „LGBTQ+ Rep Book Tag“ and are you planning to join the fun? XD What was your favourite book last month? And was I really the only one who was disappointed by ACOFAS? *lol*

Talk to me and let me know! 😉


*hugs’n’kisses*

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The Sassy Library Fox

Allgemein, Reviews, U - Z, V

Review: Vengeful (V.E. Schwab)

42635580

Rating: 5 Pfoten

Book 29 on My Book List 2020

“Some people were matches, a bit of light and no heat. And some were furnaces, all heat but little light. And then, once in a blue moon, there was a bonfire, something so hot and bright you couldn’t stand too near without burning.”

I loved this so much!! And I’m saying this not only because I’m Victor Vale trash – which I obviously am – but because V.E. Schwab knows how to tell a story! The way “Vengeful” was told is nothing but amazing. We have four weeks ago in the present, we have the past and the longer the story proceeds the closer we get to the actual present events and the final climax of the story. And yes, I chose my words carefully here because while reading the book I couldn’t help but find parallels to Victor’s condition.

“Vengeful” builds up like one of Victor’s energy charges and after the discharge you’re as drained and dizzy as him. This book however isn’t only about Victor but also about Eli, Sydney and Mitch. There are a lot of new players that enter the scene, like for instance Marcella, June and Jonathan. Not to mention all the countless EO’s EON found and arrested as well as the ones Victor found and … well you know Vic doesn’t do things by halves. ;-P Neither does Eli, so it was only a matter of time until our old friend began scheming once again.

This time it’s not all about Victor and Eli though and I was really happy to discover that we got a lot of female power to counterbalance our two boy’s ongoing feud! XD Believe me when I say that every single one of those characters has their own agenda and that they are not squeamish when it comes to enforcing their ambitions. We basically get a gathering of ruthless and powerful people who literally walk over dead bodies in order to achieve their goals and do I even need to say it? Yes? Well, my inner faerie had a field day! *lol* And before I go on and on, I better head to my character’s section and gush over there! 😉

2

You know what they say about Rome? All roads lead to Rome. Well, in this case it’s Merit so: Welcome to Merit! The city in which Victor Vale and Eli Ever started their vicious and vengeful vendetta. Tread carefully when you enter, you might get right smack into the middle of their fight and parts of spoilers could hit you at every corner! Consider yourself warned.

Victor Vale:

”He had craved a lot of things – power, revenge, control – but sex was never one of them. Even with Angie… he’d wanted her, of course, wanted her attention, her devotion, even her love. He’d cared about her, would have found ways to please her – and perhaps found his own pleasure in that – but for him, it had never been about sex.”

First things first: I still LOVE and ADORE Victor Vale. <333 His character was every bit as intriguing and morally grey as it was in “Vicious” and it was such a pleasure to watch his mind at work. I was glad to discover that his habit of using text markers to blot out words hadn’t changed, even though I’ve to admit that – in this context – it broke my heart. Victor is all about logic and control and in “Vengeful” the two things he always relied on were taken away from him. He has no control over his body’s degeneration and even though he knows that he’s doomed the solution-oriented part of him just can’t accept his predicament. He’s a man on a mission and once he sets his mind to something he just can’t let it go. The truth is Victor clings to his life because he actually wants to live! He doesn’t want to leave Sydney or Mitch behind and he’s desperate to find a cure. It hurt to see him struggle and to know that he was just a shadow of his former self, but after that ending I have hope again! Maybe Victor will have a comeback in book three?! Please?! *asks nicely*

”You’re such a weirdo sometimes.”
“Only sometimes?” asked Victor. “I’ll have to try harder.” Those blue eyes flicked to Eli. “Normal is overrated.”

”Look at me,” he said coldly, catching Sydney’s chin in his hand. “The next time you point a gun at someone, make sure you’re ready to pull the trigger.”

”Victor was used to being the strongest person in the room, and it was both familiar and unsettling to see that confidence on someone else.”

Sydney:

”Victor haunted her. His pain haunted her. His dying haunted her.
Because it was Sydney’s fault.”

Ahh little Sydney has grown so much over those last five years! It was good to see that she became a part of Victor’s little family and that they got along so well. (Well is a loosely used term though because they are a super dysfunctional family but it somehow works? *lol*) If you ask me I don’t think that Sydney doesn’t age, I think that she does, but she does it very slowly. Maybe it has to do with the ice? It could have slowed down her metabolism and therefore she’d age really slowly? The concept of cryo-preservation exists for a reason after all. 😉 Also it was good that she worked on her abilities. I’m curious to find out what she might be able to do after she had some years to get accustomed to her powers. Hopefully I’ll be able to see it in the third book. XD Plus, I think now that she made peace with Serena’s death it might be easier to handle her powers. The emotional trauma of losing her sister might have influenced her abilities and I can’t wait to see her really grow into them.

Eli Ever:

”Eli’s faith had faltered in that room.
He had found Hell in that room.
And the only sign of God was that, no matter what Haverty did, Eli continued to survive.
Whether he wanted to or not.”

I hate that I feel sorry for him, but since this was obviously Schwab’s intention I can blame it all on her. *lol* No, seriously. No one deserves to have a Dr. Haverty in their life and what he did with Eli was just cruel and inhuman. It was torture and no matter what Eli did it was wrong to experiment on him. Of course to some degree a person like Haverty was necessary to find Eli’s weaknesses and to explore them, because otherwise there would have been no way to stop him if he ever escaped. Which he ultimately did and Dr. Haverty was there to provide a solution. So yeah, I actually saw that one coming so I wasn’t surprised by the ending. Still, there were other things I didn’t expect: For instance Eli’s past. I began to wonder if he might have become a different person if his father wouldn’t have hurt him so much. How many of the things he believed were indoctrinated? How would he have turned out if his father’s religious fanaticism wouldn’t have shaped his thinking so much? It boggles the mind if you think about it too hard. In the end Eli was nothing but a little boy that got hurt by his own father and this actually made me really sad. =((

”He prayed that the pastor would stop seeing whatever he saw, while he carved new feathers into the torn wings of Eli’s back.”

Marcella:

”How many men would she have to turn to dust before one took her seriously?”

Now, if Marcella wasn’t the embodiment of a femme fatale, then I really don’t know! XD That woman was burning like a wildfire and consuming everything in her path. And just like a wildfire she wasn’t put out easily. 😉 Which quite honestly, only made me love her character even more. *lol* I liked the idea of a strong and independent female villain that strove for more than life was willing to offer her and I was glad she posed a real threat to Stell. Hell, Marcella even posed a threat to Eli and he was basically what you would call “extremely hard to kill”. Plus that woman had style! She took what she wanted and did it openly without hesitation. It’s rare to find a villain like that, especially a female one, which is just one more reason to love her for it! XD It’s a shame Eli managed to kill her, but without Jonathan she would have never been able to hold out for so long.

”She was done playing by other people’s rules. Done hiding. If you lived in the dark, you died in the dark. But stand in the light, and it was that much harder to make you disappear.”

”And what happens then?”
“Oh,” mused Marcella, tracing the veins in the stone, “I imagine that Director Stell will decide I’m more trouble than I’m worth.”

”Jesus, Marcella, anyone ever told you that you’re batshit crazy?”
Marcella pursed her lips. “Several times,” she said. “It’s an insult men love to aim at ambitious women.”

June:

”I saw became I think I saw became I couldn’t have seen became I didn’t see. Eyes were fickle. Minds were weak.”

Okay, let me say it: HOW COOL ARE JUDE’S POWERS???!!! OMG! A living shape shifting voodoo doll!!! Gosh, I’d love to have abilities like that!!! She can’t only change into every kind of person she wants to be, no, she also can’t be hurt while she wears that person’s skin! That’s like a Mystique 2.0 version and I’d be so ready to have superpowers like that! XD Of course I’d try not to get killed while wearing another person’s skin, because really, that would be more than just unfair to the poor person who would have to die. Still, the sheer possibility of being a different person every day or choosing your favourites to change every once in a while, just amazing! It doesn’t really surprise me that Jude became an assassin with skills like that; I can’t help but feel like there is way more to her character than we ever got to see though. I still have so many question marks when it comes to Jude and the more I read about her the more intrigued I became. I just hope that some mysteries will be solved in the third book because for now I’m left wondering and I’m getting a serious headache whenever I think too hard about it. *lol*

”Was it worth it? Syd had asked her that night, when she confessed to giving up her face, her life, herself. And it was, it was, but that didn’t stop June from craving the light of recognition in someone’s eyes. The comfort of being seen, being known.”

3

Victor & Sydney:

”Sydney, I am alive because of you,” he said firmly. Tears spilled down Syd’s cheeks. Victor reached out and touched her shoulder. “You saved me.”
She met his eyes then, ice blue laced with red. “But I broke you.”

Aww those two! I loved to see Victor’s gentle side and no matter how much he tried to deny that he loved Sydney, he actually did/does! Syd felt terrible for causing him so much pain, but funnily enough Victor never held it against her. He always knew that her powers are limited and he tried to protect her from the truth. Well, at least as long as he could. It had to come out eventually and my heart broke for both of them when it did. >_< To leave her with Mitch and Dol was the right decision even though it hurt to see them part. But Sydney knew because she’s probably the only person, aside from Mitch, who knows when Vic is lying. T_T I just hope that Victor finds a solution and that they will reunite at some point. Their story isn’t over yet and I’m convinced they’ll meet each other again. ❤

”He could read the question in her face. It was the same one crashing through his own head.
What have I done?”

”There’s something I have to do.” Sydney was already shaking her head, but Victor reached out and put a hand on her cheek, the gesture so strange, so gentle, it stopped her cold.
“Syd,” he said, “look at me.”

Victor & Eli:

”It frightened and thrilled Eli, to be seen, and to see himself reflected. Not all of himself – they were still so different – but there was something vital, a core of the same precious metal glinting through the rock.”

How come those two men barely had any page time together, but their chemistry was still off the charts?! It’s so damn obvious that in some twisted sort of way they are in love with each other. Their obsession and the fact they can’t let go is indication enough. I mean Eli thinks Victor is dead but still talks to his ghost?! You usually only do that with loved ones! And I swear, I could feel Eli’s relief when he found out that Victor isn’t dead. He wants to kill him once again? That’s just an excuse to see him! They both need each other, they give each other purpose and I wonder what’s going to happen with Victor now that Eli is truly dead. Or is he? I’m still not all too convinced that he’s really gone! I mean what if Dr. Haverty’s drug didn’t take?! Or its effect weakened? Is it possible for Eli to heal even if he’s dead? Would he be able to come back? ADFKASDKFADJSAKLMNÖ! Talk about things that boggle the mind. I guess I’ll only get answers once I read book 3! >_< (whenever it will come out. Ahhhhh! T_T)

”Victor wondered if that was why EON hadn’t gotten closer. Not because their pet had failed to see Victor’s hand in the killings, but because he had.”

”Victor stared at the wall as if it were still a window. “He doesn’t know how patient you are,” he said. “Doesn’t know you like I do.”
Eli cleaned the blood from his hands.
“No,” he said softly. “No one ever has.”

”Run, thought Victor, and he could see the response in Eli’s coiled frame.
Chase me.”

”Victor.” A pause. “You were supposed to stay dead.”
“It didn’t take.”

Sydney & June:

”June could think of a dozen reasons to make sure Victor was dead, and only one to stay her hand.
Sydney.”

So what exactly has been going on between those two? I have a lot of theories about June’s motives but I don’t know if any of them hits close to home. My first theory is that she’s in love with Sydney and a lot of the things she thought seemed to confirm that suspicion. I mean she referred to Syd as “her girl” and she didn’t only want to protect her but also wanted her to choose her over Victor. A person she knows Syd loves. Mhmm… but then again with the little we know about her past she could also be related to Syd? I don’t know how exactly but it could be possible? ARGH! I have no idea, seriously for all I know June could be her grandma and I’m not even kidding here. *lol* June is the most opaque character I ever encountered because we got NOTHING about her background. Well, at least nothing tangible. I get the feeling Schwab made her like that on purpose and I’m sure we’ll see a lot of her in book three. Considering Syd deleted her number from her phone it might take some while until they meet again though. >_<

4

This sequel was everything I hoped for and even more! ❤ I loved to read about all the new players that came into the game, I was happy to read about the old ones and I still can’t get enough of their morally ambiguous stance on certain things. The world needs more books like this and I’m so ready to read them all! And yes, I’m going to admit it: I’m Victor Vale trash and I’ll never be sorry for it! *lol* Can we have book three now, Victoria? XD