January was just as miserable as any of the previous months but I think I can say that with February, I’m officially fully back from my hiatus! What changed is mostly that I got meds and they seem to be working – things are a lot easier and after months, I feel more like myself again. In the last week of February especially, I managed to read as much or more as I did in an average month pre-slump, which I’m really happy with.
- Candide by Voltaire: Went for it mostly out of curiosity. I have mixed feelings – on one hand, it’s the first classic I didn’t hate, the pacing is great, it’s short, it’s hilariously petty (more so the more context you know), and appropriate for the times. On the other, there is about as much blatant racism as you’d expect, which is to say, a lot. Which often left me stuck between cringing at that and laughing at, for example, the open complaints about printers and publishers.
- The first part of the memoirs of Wilhelmine of Prussia, which happened pretty much on a whim. They came up in conversation, I went to look them up online, and accidentally the whole thing within a couple hours. I know they are not considered too reliable, but the mentions of horrific abuse are too frequent to ignore.
- Upright Women Wanted by Sarah Gailey: Finally, a story with a western flavour where I found nothing to complain about. Felt like the right book at the right time. Loved how queer it was, too.
- The Gurkha and the Lord of Tuesday by Saad Z. Hossain: Very fun. Loved the chaos the djinn caused.
- Elatsoe by Darcie Little Badger: Good enough, very well done ace and Native American rep, but it read too young for my taste. It’s almost bordering on middle grade and that’s just not my thing.
- Heart of Stone by Johannes T. Evans: From how this book is described, I thought it would be perfect for me, but then it just…wasn’t. I found it to be more than a bit of a slog. When I’m reading romance, I want the protagonists to kiss WAY before the very very end.
- Burning Roses by S.L. Huang (ARC): Tries to do far too many things at the same time for a short little novella. Retellings of several different fairytales, mixing eastern and western influences, present and flashbacks, two protagonists’ stories…it didn’t really work for me.
- The Seventh Perfection by Daniel Polansky (ARC): This was, well, perfection. I haven’t ever seen a story told in this particular way before and I’ve always been a sucker for literary and experimental. Could hardly be a better fit for me.
- The Tropic of Serpents by Marie Brennan: One of my last Bingo books. A bit slow going, but I’m only about a quarter in. I hope it picks up the pace soon!
Books read in 2021: 8 (+ 0 rereads)
r/Fantasy Bingo Challenge progress: 22/25 (88%)