Monday, April 3, 2017

Books Lately: March '17

March is usually such a busy month for me that I don't have time to relax at all, let alone read a book.  Thankfully, I was able to finish 4 books, and am just about finished with the book I'm currently reading.   Hopefully, April is a little less chaotic and I have more time for reading!

Red Rising, by Pierce Brown

Description from Amazon:
"Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations. Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and lush wilds spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity’s overlords struggle for power.  He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies . . . even if it means he has to become one of them to do so."

I had no idea what this book was about before I started reading it.  I read reviews that said it was similar to Hunger Games, but this was much darker than Hunger Games.  The beginning was really confusing trying to imagine the scenes and characters in my mind and then trying to figure out the different color classes (and I'm still confused about most of it) but once you get into the heart of the story and the battle between the houses, it gets a little easier to follow.  I really enjoyed it, much more than I thought I would and I cannot wait to dive into the second book so I can read what happens next!  I can see the similarities between Red Rising and The Hunger Games, but they are also very different.  Same, same...but different. ;-)

Pen Pals, by Martin S. Gore
 **A copy of this book has been generously provided to me by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**

Description from NetGalley:
"Jean Murgatroyd passes away in the northern industrial town of her birth, and her death re-opens old wounds surrounding the ownership of the family business. James Murgatroyd seeks to regain control of Murgatroyd Pens. Brenda Arkwright, the current Managing Director, has worked for the company all of her working life. But Brenda has secrets... 

Events from the her past that are now coming back to haunt her. She passes on a monogrammed fountain pen to her daughter, a present from Jean. Both Jean and Brenda know that there is another identical pen, and that the person now in possession of it holds the future of Murgatroyds in their hands... 

A heart warming family saga based in a Yorkshire town in the strike torn, class ridden seventies."

I really enjoyed the actual story that the author was telling in this book.  However, because of the way it was written, I found myself all sorts of confused and frustrated.  There are SO MANY characters in this book and it goes back and forth between viewpoints within the same chapter which made it harder to figure out what exactly was going on.  The chapters also go back and forth between different eras so I found myself re-reading certain parts over and over to figure out what was going on.

A Collapse of Horses, by Brian Evenson

 **A copy of this book has been generously provided to me by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**

Description from NetGalley:
"A stuffed bear beats with the rhythm of a dead baby’s heart; a crew on a space mission are dying of exposure to alien dust and at the hands of a killer among them; and a town keeps receding to the east as a man travels back to the father who drove him away. 

In these stories, Brian Evenson unsettles us with the everyday and the extraordinary—the terror of living with the knowledge of all we cannot know."

This book of short stories was haunting and creepy and I loved it!  It reminded me of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark which were some of my favorite books when I was a kid.  If you enjoy creepy books that make you think twice about being home alone at night, you'll enjoy this one.

Milk & Honey, by Rupi Kaur 

Description from Amazon:
"The book is divided into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose. Deals with a different pain. Heals a different heartache. Milk and Honey takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look."

I had heard such great things about this book and was so excited to read it, but it kinda fell short of my expectations.  Of the whole book, only a couple poems really stood out to me and evoked the kinds of feelings that I think a poem should.   Very easy read of poetry and prose, didn't take me more than an hour to get through.


  1. Red Rising has been on my list for awhile, ever since Kathy and Kristen recommended it. I know they are long books though and so many people said they had a hard time getting through the first part of the first book so I have been putting them off. But I want to get to it soon and glad you liked it!

  2. oh man, bummer about pen pals, i love the cover lol.
    yay for red rising! i also found it super confusing at the beginning, and probably even now after i've read all of them haha. i kept trying to get my hsuband to read it and he kept comparing it to hgunger games and i was like no, keep going! i think it's pretty different to hunger games, i mean the beginning is similar, but that's about it i think.

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