Fiction Friday's: 04.02.2021
Welcome back, Dear Readers, to a long overdue new installment of Fiction Fridays! Now, I know that it's been a minute, but I place full blame on the craziness of the holidays this year and the general buzz and hum of trying to navigate life when it throws you for a loop.
Oy, with the poodles already!
So where did we leave off? Ah, yes, my overly ambitious TBR back in December. I had a collection of 8 books that I had brought with me to try and get through. At the end of the week, I made it to....
*dramatic drum roll, please*
3...I read 3, of those books.
See, this is the problem with bringing so many physical books with me on any kind of vacation. At the end of the day, I don't actually know what mood I'm going to be in or what kind of story I need. I am a fickle reader, and as much as I love making lists and reading goals, I am absolutely AWFUL at keeping to them.
In my defense, I did start three of those other books on my list...but I was just not having it. The vibe was off, the stars weren't aligned, etc., etc.
The books that I did read, I absolutely loved, so at least that's something. Those books were: Spoiler Alert by Olivia Dade, A Rogue of One's Own by Evie Dunmore, and The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden.
A now, on to the stats!
Holiday Reading Stats
Combined Page Total: 1,234 pages with an average of 411.33 pages per novel
Ratings: An average of 4.58 stars (out of 5 stars)
Genres: 2 Romances, 1 Contemporary and 1 Historical; 1 Fantasy, with Historical Leanings
Series: 2 Sequels; 1 Standalone
Overall, it was a decent week - not my best in terms of how many books I got through, but I loved all the books that I read, which more than makes up for it in my book.
I was delighted with Spoiler Alert, which touched my fangirl heart with all of its nerdy touches, and I genuinely loved the relationship between Marcus and April. I really appreciated the fact that Marcus struggles with dyslexia, but that he also showcases the ways in which he is still able to enjoy reading and writing. April was a heroine that I related to quite a bit, being that she is a plus-size woman living and finding love in a straight-size world. Overall it was cute, flirty, and fun.
A Rogue of One's Own was witty and charming, although I rated it slightly less than I did the first installment - not by much, but out of the two books currently out in the world, I prefer the first, Bringing Down the Duke. The banter between Lady Lucie and Tristan was a great enemies-to-lovers slow-burn, and I really enjoyed their dynamic together. Ultimately, there were parts that fell flat, or that felt too convenient in terms of the action, and I felt like the ending was a bit *on the nose*, but I still had a great time.
And finally, I thought that the finale of Katherine Arden's trilogy, The Winter of the Witch, was fantastic. I was immediately gripped by what was going on and it was a fantastic culmination of these characters that I had been following for so long. I know that there are quite a few people who felt like they couldn't get into this series, and that's fine - not every book is for every person. However, I adore this style of fantasy writing, merging folkloric traditions into narratives that make you suspend your disbelief, that blur the lines between reality and magic.
With that all being said, I also thought that I'd give you all some updates on my overall 2020 Reading Challenge, that way, starting next week, I can hurriedly catch up on my 2021 Reading thus far.
2020 Reading Challenge
Total Books Read: 116
Total Pages Read: 43,201
Average Pages per Book: 372.42 pages
Breakdown by Genre:
Urban Sci-Fi/Fantasy: 37%
Paranormal Romance: 23%
Historical Romance: 14%
Contemporary Romance: 13%
Contemporary Fiction: 2%
Young Adult Fiction: 1%
This actually leads me to detailing some of the reading goals that I have for myself for the rest of the year. I want to push myself to embrace new genres and especially to diversify the authors and the stories that I read. I always set my immediate goal of reading 100 books per year, but I want to take it one step further.
2021 Reading Goals
Read at least 1 Non-Fiction book per month
Read at least 1 Book in a Genre I don't usually read (excluding non-fiction)
Make sure that at least 1/3 of the books I read in a month are by BIPOC authors
Read at least 1 Book that features LGBTQIA+ stories (as protagonists)
Additionally, I'm dedicating 2021 to finishing series that have been collecting dust on my shelves - there are a few in particular that I would really like to complete so that I can move forward with my reading life! For the sake of this "challenge", I'm including both series that I have begun, and need to finish, as well as multiple series within a "world".
Series I Want to Complete in 2021
The Grishaverse: Six of Crows Duology; King of Scars Duology - Leigh Bardugo
The Shadowhunters Chronicles: The Dark Artifices Trilogy; Ghosts of the Shadow Market Collection; The Last Hours Trilogy - Cassandra Clare
The Cruel Prince Trilogy - Holly Black
Ember in the Ashes Quartet - Sabaa Tahir
Poppy War Trilogy - R. F. Kuang
Mistborn Trilogy - Brandon Sanderson
Crown of Shards Series - Jennifer Estep
Graceling Realm - Kristin Cashore
The Witchlands Series - Susan Dennard
Stormheart Series - Cora Carmack
Montague Siblings Series - Mackenzi Lee
The Raven Cycle - Maggie Stiefvater
Kate Daniels Series - Ilona Andrews
Innkeeper Chronicles - Ilona Andrews
The Lady Janies Series - The Lady Janies (Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, and Brodi Ashton)
The Camp Half-Blood Chronicles: Percy Jackson & the Olympians; The Heroes of Olympus; The Trials of Apollo - Rick Riordan
Queen of the Tearling Series - Erika Johansen
The Remnant Chronicles - Mary E. Pearson
The Winner's Trilogy - Marie Rutkoski
Shades of Magic Series - V.E. Schwab
Tairen Soul Series - C.L. Wilson
Starbound Series - Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner
Love & Gelato Series - Jenna Evans Welch
Girl of Fire and Thorns Series - Rae Carson
Surviving Time Series - Calia Read
And that's about it.
So tell me - what have you been reading? What are some of your reading goals for this year, or what are some new releases that you're super stoked for?