February 2023 Reading Wrap-Up

  • Post last modified:March 7, 2023

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Yeah, yeah — it’s a little far into March to be posting about February, but I feel some weird need to prove to people that I have been reading, since I’ve had 0 time for anything else with the new job and house. (On that note, the weekly Tuesday release lists are taking a pause. I just want to focus on writing other posts with the now limited time I have for blogging.)

I finished 6 books this month, so a bit behind last month’s pace, but I’m still pretty pleased. You can kind of tell what’s happening in my life by the kinds of books I’ve been reading, and with all this change, it’s not really a surprise that I’ve been digging into the YA — a.k.a. my comfort reads.

Righty, here we go.

On the come up by Angie Thomas

On the Come Up by Angie Thomas

Obviously, I loved The Hate U Give (as did everyone else) and was looking forward to On the Come Up. However, I just wasn’t as into it. I can’t exactly pinpoint what about the story didn’t grab me — it just didn’t. To be fair, authors I’ve previously loved do have an uphill battle.

I got pretty darn close to DNF’ing On the Come Up because my loan was due and I just wasn’t feeling it, but I powered through anyways.

Our Violent Ends by Chloe Gong

Our Violent Ends by Chloe Gong

In a coincidence, I saw a performance of Romeo & Juliet recently and couldn’t stop thinking about these books. Like I said in last month’s review of the first book, I wasn’t sure I was going to love this one as I’m a bit harsh on retellings to begin with. I’ll leave it at this: I think Chloe Gong did the best she could with a Romeo & Juliet retelling. Don’t get me wrong, I wish it hadn’t been a retelling, but there we are.

The Crown by Kiera Cass

The Crown by Kierra Cass

This one I finished more out of loyalty to the first three books in the Selection series. The fourth one wasn’t as compelling but I thought I might as well power through the fifth book since I was almost done with them. It was fine. A bit forgettable.

White Smoke by Tiffany D. Jackson

White Smoke by Tiffany D. Jackson

I’ve been sleepin’ on Jackson, y’all. I think last month’s Ace of Spades got me wanting more YA horror, and after loving Grown, I figured Jackson was the way to go. I was not wrong! White Smoke was a bit of a basic story (family moves into an old house in a strange new town) but the characters really made it into something wonderful. Jackson’s depiction of OCD, especially, was fascinating. Plus — yes, it was creepy!

The Weight of Blood by Tiffany D. Jackson

The Weight of Blood by Tiffany D. Jackson

I was a bit let down by this, I won’t lie. Whereas White Smoke took an overdone story and made it feel fresh again, The Weight of Blood just didn’t do anything new. The podcast aspect could have been good, but felt more like Done Disappeared (a true crime satire you should listen to) than a serious show. The “magic” system, too, just didn’t feel as fleshed out/part of the story as it should have been. Still, I’m a sucker for an honest look at a Georgia high school. (Yeah, things are still at that level of racism down in the south, as exaggerated as they might sound.)

Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson

Monday's Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson

Despite this slight lapse in my Tiffany D. Jackson fascination, I soldiered on through her titles, and I’m so glad I did.

Monday’s Not Coming was one of the rawest YA books I’ve read in a long time. I expected it would be messed up, but this story went 10x further than I thought it would, and it was amazing.

This probably is old news to some of y’all as this book has been out for a while, but if you haven’t read this, pick it up.

Also, the references to the Serial case, y’all. I can’t tell if I admire them for misleading me, or feel like they were a distraction that should have been edited out. But their inclusion certainly doesn’t take away from the fact that this is a brilliant book.

No DNFs this month, but as I said, I got close with one. As for March, pretty sure I’m going to be carrying on with my YA crusade. We’ll see! Meanwhile, any suggestions for the library hold list?


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