2022 Reading Challenge discussion

ARCHIVE 2020 > Ria's 15 Reads

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message 1: by Ria (last edited May 12, 2020 02:44PM) (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Death of Mrs. Westaway

A woman who makes a living as a tarot card reader is sent a letter regarding an inheritance for someone she doesn't even know. So it must be a mistake, and of course Hal couldn't claim an inheritance she knows isn't hers. But she needs money, badly, and what if this letter isn't a mistake after all?

I read this book as part of a book club, and I honestly wasn't expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. There were twists and turns, and I was constantly guessing what was going to happen next. Plus the ending felt satisfying to me too which is something I always find books lack. If you love mystery and family drama, then I would definitely recommend this. I couldn't put it down!

message 2: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments My goal is to read 15 books this year! I really want to get back into reading so I'm hoping this challenge will motivate me to just that!

message 3: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments Needful Things

The second book I read this year was Needful Things. Now I love Stephen King and have really enjoyed his stuff in the past. And whilst the first half of this book was really enjoyable, I felt like it became kind of repetitive as it went on. And the ending was super disappointing in my opinion.

3/5 stars

message 4: by Ilona, Global Moderator (new)

Ilona | 4095 comments Hi Ria, I am not much of a Stephen King reader, but the first book looks really interesting, I added it to my TBR :) Best of luck with your reading challenge!

message 5: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments Ilona wrote: "Hi Ria, I am not much of a Stephen King reader, but the first book looks really interesting, I added it to my TBR :) Best of luck with your reading challenge!"

Thank you! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! :)

message 6: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments Dracula

The third book I read this year was Dracula. This was another book club read as the tv show had just finished airing on BBC, so we though why not give it a read and see how it compares.

It started off great, despite being published in 1897, it didn't feel over 100 years old, until I reached the middle of the book. I feel like nowadays Dracula would have 100 fewer pages, just because of the amount of information Bram Stoker wrote which just felt unnecessary. Maybe I'm just not used to reading older books, but I struggled to get through this one.

Although it was a difficult read, the overall story was pretty good and the bits I didn't struggle through I really enjoyed!

3/5 stars

message 7: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Whisper Man

The Whisper Man by Alex North was a spur of the moment purchase. I haven't read all that many crime thrillers, and the premise of this book sounded pretty creepy, and I usually enjoy creepy.

This book is about a dad, Tom, who after a recent tragedy, moves himself and his son Jake to a new house and new town, just to escape their old life and old memories. But this town has seen children abducted and murdered, both 20 years ago, and now in the present day. The original person responsible, Frank Carter, was caught and nicknamed The Whisper Man, as he would lure children out of their houses at night by whispering at their window. And now, it's happening again. One child has already been found dead, and then Jake starts to hear whispering at his window.

The pace of this book was great! There was always something happening, there were a lot of reveals I wasn't expecting and there were definitely some creepy moments that gave me goosebumps.

However, whilst I enjoyed the ending, it felt a little underwhelming.

All in all a really good book, I just wanted a little bit more from the ending. Will definitely read something else from Alex North again in the future!

4/5 stars :)

message 8: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

So, I never read all the Harry Potter books as a child, I read the first one, but that was where it stopped. And now, as an adult I got the urge to read them all and I'm super glad I did!

The first two were great, and this one was no exception, I read it all in a day, one of those I couldn't wait to pick up again. It's nice to compare the books to the films and see just how much they left out adapting it to the big screen.

Couldn't find fault with this one.

5/5 stars.

message 9: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments Dead Until Dark

I used to love vampires as a teen. I mean what teenage girl didn't love Twilight growing up (still a guilty pleasure for me to be honest), and I love the tv show True Blood based on the books by Charlaine Harris. I'd never actually read the books though, so I thought why not give them a go?

The first one introduces Sookie Stackhouse as the main protagonist in a world where vampires have revealed themselves. This was one of my favourite aspects of this book, the interaction between vampires and a society that wasn't fully sold on the idea of them living amongst them. Honestly though, I found Sookie kind of annoying which isn't great when the whole book is in her POV. But I'm going to try the second one in hopes that her character develops more for the good.

It did have a good mix of action and romance though, which is always a good combination. An enjoyable read.

3/5 stars.

message 10: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Humans

I got this book free from the library I work at. It follows an alien who has overtaken a mathematician's body. The mathematician has recently discovered the answer to an age old math problem and this alien has been sent to destroy all evidence of this. However, in the body of this strange man, the alien meets his 'son' and his 'wife' and slowly starts to realise that perhaps the human race isn't so bad after all. Eventually he has to make a choice between staying on earth or returning to his home planet.

I'd never even heard of this book before reading it and I knew nothing about it. Plus, after reading the blurb I probably usually wouldn't have gone for a book like this. But it pleasantly surprised me and I really enjoyed it! Glad I picked this up!

4/5 stars.

message 11: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Gunslinger

One of my life goals is to read every single Stephen King book ever. And the Dark Tower series is what I've decided to read next.

I'm not sure what I expected when I started this book, and I probably should have expected it to be as weird as it was! But I actually really enjoyed this one! The style of this book felt quite different from previous books I've read by Stephen King, and I liked it a lot. This world he has created is enjoyable to read about. Although the ending was a bit strange, I'm looking forward to reading more about this world.

4/5 stars.

message 12: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments Six of Crows

Fantasy books are a genre that I haven't read much of, but I want to read more. So I thought, why not start with a YA fantasy to get the ball rolling.

Six of Crows was great. The story was fast paced and full of surprises. I loved the world and the addition of Grisha, and different races and societies who don't get along. And most importantly of all, I loved the characters that Leigh Bardugo has created. The little rivalries, friendships and relationships that you can see developing and the interactions between the main characters is part of what makes this book so special. I will definitely be picking up the second book in this duology.

5/5 stars.

message 13: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Road

The concept of the Road is so simple. But it makes for a really gripping story.

A man and his son trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. That's pretty much the plot. They come across various obstacles and even though we never know anyone's names, Cormac McCarthy really makes you develop a strong attachment to the characters.

I found some parts of this story heartbreaking and I really felt for the young boy. The underlying message of what makes someone a bad person really shone through.

4/5 stars.

message 14: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Way of Kings, Part 1

My next venture into the genre of fantasy was the Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson. This took me a while to read. I think it was because the names of people and places weren't familiar so my brain wasn't used to it! But that didn't make me enjoy this book any less.

It was brilliant, the world that Sanderson has built is so diverse and well thought out. The idea of little spren appearing whenever you do something creative or even in the presence of rotting bodies is very cool and I'm excited for the eventual meeting up of all the characters introduced in this first instalment. Their development even in this first book has been immense and I'm looking forward to what else is in store for me in this series of books.

4/5 stars.

message 15: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The next book I read was a recommendation from my Mum. It was Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin. It focuses on the life and events of a woman called Mary Ann Singleton after she moves to San Francisco. But I also liked that it didn't just follow her, but also other people that lived in her apartment complex run by Anna Madrigal who is quite a mysterious woman.

There's affairs and secrets and oh so much drama plus the chapters were super short making this is a quick and very enjoyable read. I will make sure to read the rest of the series. Thanks Mum!

4/5 stars.

message 16: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Lightning Thief

For my next book, I decided to read the Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan. Much like Harry Potter, I'd only ever watched the films and my boyfriend actually recommended me reading the books. And I'm glad he did.

I'm surprised and quite disappointed at how much the movie differs from this book. The book seems like a better plot and I wish the creators of the film had stuck to it more. But oh well.

For those who don't know, this book is about a young boy (Percy) who finds out his father is actually a God, making him a Demi-God. He is sent to a camp where others like him live and eventually is sent out on a quest with his two friends, Annabeth and Grover, to retrieve Zeus' lightning bolt (which has been stolen) in order to stop a war between the Gods from starting.

I love ancient history and Greek myths so much, and to have that incorporated into the regular old human world was so much fun. Percy is a lovable character as are Annabeth and Grover (probs my favourite) so you really do want them to succeed in their quest.

I'm excited to read more and probably get disappointed at the second film they released!

4.5/5 stars.

message 17: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments Crooked Kingdom

I wish I could give this book more than 5 stars. I liked it even more than the first one!

After the events of the first book, Kaz Brekker (whose scheming mind I love!) and his mismatched crew set out for revenge. There's twists and action and even a dash of romance. I laughed, I cried (I can't recall the last book that made me cry) and I was left satisfied by the ending although I do wish there was another book featuring this group of characters out there.

In order to feed my new found addiction of Leigh Bardugo's world and writing, I will be reading the Shadow and Bone trilogy at some point in the near future.

5/5 stars.

message 18: by Ria (last edited Oct 19, 2020 11:11AM) (new)

Ria | 22 comments Crave

I was in the mood for a cheesy teen drama with magic and vampires, and this book gave me just that. It was enjoyable, I read it in a day and was very much reminded of my days as a teen reading cheesy Wattpad stories.

One issue I had was that the first half of the story didn't really go anywhere. It was just the main protagonist going on about how cold she was and the amount of times the phrase 'altitude sickness' was mentioned, if it were a drinking game, I would have quite easily passed out.

Once the story actually started heading somewhere though, I did enjoy it. Not sure if I like the sound of the premise that has been set up for the second book, so unless I'm short on things to read, that probably won't get read for a while.

*Edit - this is my 15th book of the year! My goal has been reached!
3/5 stars.

message 19: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Hunting Party

The Hunting Party is a book I've been wanting to read for a while. I mean, who doesn't love a good whodunnit? It centres around a group of people who meet up for their annual New Year's get together at a nice secluded snowy getaway in Scotland (what could go wrong?) Friends since University, it soon becomes clear that these friendships haven't fully remained strong over the years, especially when one of these friends shows up dead.

One thing I enjoyed about this book was the fact that you didn't actually know who had died until near the end of the book. There was definitely a lot of hints, but it's never actually revealed until the killer is revealed. Unfortunately, I did guess who the killer was quite early on, but there were still quite a few twists and turns that I didn't see coming.

Another aspect I enjoyed was the jumping between perspectives. It really gave depth and personality to the characters which was great as there were quite a few different people to differentiate between!

Overall, a rather good murder mystery that I would definitely recommend!

4/5 stars.

message 20: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments The Thursday Murder Club

I love Richard Osman and murder mysteries. So as soon as I saw Richard Osman had written and was publishing a murder mystery, I added it to my tbr immediately.

A group of old boys and girls have formed a murder mystery club (held on Thursdays) where they like to have a crack at solving old unsolved crimes and mysteries. And then someone actually gets murdered near their old folks home and they get to test their brains against an actual murder!

This book was actually great. I loved the characters, I loved the setting and I loved the plot. Plus, I couldn't guess who did it at all, he kept me guessing until the very end and I was shocked! He absolutely nailed this! I couldn't recommend this enough. I can't wait for his next instalment!

5 stars!

message 21: by Ria (new)

Ria | 22 comments So I've read my 15 books! In fact, at the time of writing this, I've just finished my 25th! Safe to say I've smashed my goal this year. Keeping this up has definitely helped, and I can't wait to set myself an even greater goal next year!

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