Books, Real Life

September Slump (or Comeback of the Year)

Some unexpected news set the tone for my September.

That, along with starting a new work schedule, turned me into a zombie.

To cope, I spent much of the month hanging out with friends and watching horror movies.

I checked my stats this morning and…

…I only read 9 books last month.


So, uh…I’m going to tell you about all of them.


Attachments by Rainbow Rowell


Verdict: DNF

This was my good-faith attempt to enjoy Rainbow Rowell.

I did not succeed.

The blurb for this books oversells the potential romance; it’s very much a coming-of-age story instead.

I’m really sick of being promised fluff and handed melancholy.



The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

Verdict: DNF

I finally allowed myself to DNF this sucker.

I officially checked out when a mysterious figure in a plague doctor outfit appeared and told the protagonist, “You have x number of chances to solve this, OR ELSE…you’ll have to try again!”

So…no consequences, then?

I hate the cover blurb SO MUCH.

What do you mean it’s “unlike anything [you’ve] read before?”

Is this the first book you’ve ever read?


The Best Party of Our Lives: Stories of Gay Weddings and True Love to Inspire Us All by Sarah Galvin (reread)


Verdict: One of my favorite slump-busters

This book lifts me up when I’m feeling low.

Cracking it open is a relief.

Something shocking happened this time: I came around to the idea of a Thanksgiving-inspired wedding.

Okay, not completely; I don’t like turkey or gourds.

But a nice fall wedding in a banquet hall with a brief ceremony followed by a lovely dinner?

That sounds AMAZING.

It’s not too far off from what Lucy Knisley and John Horstman did for their wedding.



They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

They Both Die at the End

Verdict: IT GOT ME

I was determined to feel NOTHING for this book.

I tried reading More Happy Than Not last year, but it wasn’t for me.

I figured I was immune to Adam Silvera’s brand of soft boi tragedy.


After finishing this book, I went completely numb.

I felt too many things to process them all.

This book touched me so.


The Seafarer’s Kiss by Julia Ember

Seafarer's Kiss

Verdict: Fine for a first novel

My friend Shane, knowing how much I love bi rep and fairy tale retellings, lent this to me (which reminds me I need to get it back to him this week.)

The writing and worldbuilding in this book aren’t the best.

That said, I couldn’t put this book down.

I won’t be reading the companion novel, but I’m interested to see what else Julia Ember does.


Toil & Trouble: 15 Tales of Women & Witchcraft edited by Jessica Spotswood & Tess Sharpe

Toil and Trouble

Verdict: My heart. My head. My soul.

I really liked the All Out anthology.

As with any anthology, a couple of the stories were pretty weak; overall though, it was a decent collection.

Toil & Trouble was even better.

This anthology ends on such a strong note.

Is likening things to The Handmaid’s Tale tired?

Hm. Won’t do that, then.


The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater (reread)

dream thieves


Truth be told, the plot doesn’t pick up until page 200.

When it does, though, it’s PHENOMENAL.

It’s so TENSE. I can see why I had to finish the book in one sitting in 2015.

Best book in the series by FAR.


Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon: Eternal Edition Vol 4 by Naoko Takeuchi

PGSM 4.jpg

Verdict: Not my favorite of the series

I didn’t agree with the verdict that the Sailor Moon manga is rushed and poorly-written.

That is, not until this volume.

This volume wraps up the Nemesis/Black Moon plot pretty quickly, brushing past a major character death and capping the volume with two side stories that I DIDN’T ASK FOR.

I don’t understand why the Outer Senshi haven’t shown up yet? It’s been a while since I read the manga, but there’s only one eternal edition left and I don’t know how it’s going to fit everything in.

Oh well. At least the art is pretty.


Wayward Son by Rainbow Rowell

Wayward Son


Laura Jean Truman wrote a beautiful article about the importance of vulnerability and regret in the human experience. (CW: purity culture)

Trying to find love inevitably involves disappointment and pain. Them’s the breaks.

Even though I know this intellectually, the awful sequel to Carry On has me feeling like I’ll never find love again.

Would I have fallen for Carry On if I’d known it would end like this?

Wayward Son ruined EVERYTHING.

G’bye, Rainbow Rowell. We aren’t friends.


October news: I am giving His Dark Materials ANOTHER shot. (I usually lose interest midway through The Subtle Knife. I HATE WILL PARRY.)

I’m making more progress in Crooked Kingdom and The Raven Cycle and I picked up a bunch of brand-new books from the library.

All in all, October looks like it’ll be a good reading month.

We shall see.

2 thoughts on “September Slump (or Comeback of the Year)”

  1. I love that you mention you ‘only’ read 9 books while here I am celebrating the fact that I read 4 😂 So here’s a little secret…I think Rainbow Rowell is a little overrated! Especially after all the stuff I’ve heard about Eleanor & Park, I just don’t know that I want to read any more books by her 😕

    💛 Ngoc

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ack! 🙈 Let me stick my foot directly in my mouth.
      LE GASP! Haha I feel like people who don’t love Rainbow Rowell have formed a secret society for protection. And eesh, totally understand about Eleanor and Park. 😕 That was one I DNFed because I didn’t get the hype…and then I heard all the backlash…

      Liked by 1 person

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