I didn’t read as many books last month as I would have liked.
I started the month off really strong by finishing a bunch of half-read books only to fizzle out during the last week-and-a-half.
I only read half of my Black History Month picks. I started The Hate U Give and, while I really enjoy it, I haven’t picked it back up.
I then DNFed 3 books in a row.
Looking back at my February spreadsheet, I found the answer: I read two intense, disturbing novels back-to-back. Since then, I haven’t been able to finish a book.
Weird books have got me in a slump.
These were the books I read in February that made me question my own sanity.
(I would have included The Vegetarian on this list, but I haven’t finished it yet.)
Etiquette and Espionage by Gail Carriger
I heard Karen Kilgariff refer to the books in this series as delightful, well-written, underrated YA novels.
This description surprised me; I’d been expecting a more serious, Gallagher Girls-style story.
Nothing I say will prepare you for the absurdity of this book.
It’s steampunk-y as all hell without being self-congratulatory.
Androids exist alongside vampires and werewolves.
As much as I enjoyed it, IT’S A WEIRD BOOK.
I watched an improv scene last Wednesday where the improvisers stood around screaming obscenities at each other until one guy pulled a catnip mouse from his pocket and threw it across the stage.
Confused? Now you understand my reading experience.
Romeo and/or Juliet by Ryan North
I spent 5 hours reading this book on a Saturday.
I had so much fun.
I knew Ryan North had a wacky sense of humor, but I wasn’t ready for battle robots, ninjas, and brunch.
All of the best endings were unconventional.
Were vampires involved? Surely they must have been.
Whatever you were expecting from an illustrated Shakespeare novel, forget it. You’re not ready.
The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee
I loved this book with my whole heart and soul.
It had female friendship and social commentary galore.
And petticoats did, in fact, serve an important plot function!
I still wasn’t ready for the turn this novel took about 300 pages in.
It surprised me because the previous novel was fairly realistic all the way through.
This novel…well, I don’t want to spoil it.
…thar be dragons here?
The Summer of Salt by Katrina Leno
I couldn’t stop thinking about this stupid book after I read it.
I’M SO ANGRY.
I don’t know WHY I thought this would be a cute, quirky domestic comedy.
The cover, maybe? The description?
Whatever the reason, I wasn’t prepared to be traumatized.
The novel followed a standard coming-of-age plot until about the halfway point.
Then the whole tone shifted.
I kept going, “Wait, WHAT?”
I loved this book, but I’m hesitant to recommend it.
Trigger warnings for animal abuse, violence, and rape.
The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
This book came highly-recommended.
I’ve seen it on Elliot Bay’s display shelves for months. Everyone loves it.
I finally got a copy and…hated it.
Okay, that’s not true.
I loved the beginning.
I loved the element of mystery and the thrilling urban fantasy turns.
Some of the dark fantasy scenes in the beginning were truly horrifying. I was so into it.
Then the story started getting really magical.
My horror grew worse.
I don’t have a good word for this book other than “disturbing.”
Portions of it were legitimately hard to read.
Oddly enough, this book reminded me of the SyFy film “Black Forest” starring Howard Charles.
In that movie, tourists are tormented by fairy tale creatures.
Though that movie is far from good, it’s a pretty accurate depiction of the events of this novel.
I won’t be reading the sequel. My mind can’t take it.
I’m curious to know which books surprised you or freaked you out this month.
Let. Me. Know. In. The. Comments.