February 2020 Round-Up

So here we are again. The end of a month, where I round up my favourite books of the month/ scream into the void hoping it will choose the books for me. Since it is a leap year so February has an extra day, and also because I can do whatever I like on my blog, I am going to give my favourite book from this month, followed by a few more which were awesome

THE WINNER – QUEEN OF NOTHING BY HOLLY BLACK

Let me have everything I ever wanted, everything I ever dreamed, and eternal misery along with it. Let me live on with an ice shard through my heart.

Holly Black, Queen of Nothing

What I liked about it: everything. Jude. Cardan. Faeries. Humour and beauty. Plot twists galore. AN epic conclusion to this trilogy.

What I didn’t like about it: it’s the end of the series 😥

My favourite character: Jude all the wayyyyyyyy. She’s so badass and powerful and unashamed of wanting power.

Position in series: 3/3

Genres: young adult, fantasy, romance

THE OTHERS THAT I LOVED

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson

What I liked about it: murder. It is set near where I live. Andie just straight up ignoring everyone who tells her what to do. The tension. The mixture of formats including transcripts and case notes.

What I didn’t like about it: I did not know there’s meant to be a sequel released this year. Also, the sequel hasn’t been released yet, which is very upsetting.

My favourite character: Andie. She just does what she wants but in a nice way.

Position in series: 1/3?

Genres: crime, young adult, contemporary, mystery, thriller

The Places I’ve Cried in Public by Holly Bourne

What I liked about it: the emotions. The contrast of past and present. More emotions. The slow unravelling of the story.

What I didn’t like about it: I have mentioned three authors on this page so far and they’re all called Holly. This is beyond confusing.

My favourite character: Amelie, my poor sweetheart.

Position in series: 1/1

Genres: contemporary, young adult, romance-ish

It’s Not OK to Feel Blue and Other Lies

What I liked about it: honest, diverse, emotional, easy to read because it’s made up of lots of short pieces.

What I didn’t like about it: Sometimes I got a bit confused because occasionally a sentence would be in massive letters to emphasise it. But that’s probably just me.

Genres: nonfiction, mental health

Pride, collected by Juno Dawson

What I liked about it: A range of genres, easy to read and lots of adorable LGBTQ+ relationships

What I didn’t like about it:  It wasn’t long enough

My favourite character: Can’t remember her name but the girl with the phoenix

Position in series: N/A

Genres: LGBTQ+, short stories, anthology, poetry

And so that concludes my February roundup! February has seemed a very, very long time, and I don’t think it’s just because of the extra day. With three family birthdays, a hospital appointment, college, half term, two new piercings, a couple of cinema trips, a museum trip, a talk from Mary Beard and 17 books read, I’m definitely ready for some rest and relaxation in March. Preferably with more reading time. I hope you’ve all had a good February, and I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to.

The Queen of Nothing Review

The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black

The Queen of Nothing. The final book in the Folk of the Air trilogy. Wow. Somehow I always forget how much I love Holly Black’s books until I read the next one, and fall back in love even faster than before.

The Queen of Nothing follows Jude as she returns to the Faerie Court, facing Cardan and various other figures from her past. There are duels and betrayal and plot twists and schemes and moments to shatter your hearts into tiny pieces, and I wouldn’t want it any different. Also, Jude pretends to be Taryn for a while and I am a huge fan of characters switching places, I just think it’s great fun.

Let’s start with Jude. Wonderful, powerful, brave Jude. From the very start of this book Jude is doing her own thing, carrying out illicit faerie jobs for money in the human world. I love everything about Jude, how strong and furious she is, how she schemes and fights, how she hates to be powerless. It gives me such a rush when she asserts herself as queen, refusing to bow to anyone else’s wishes (she also uses her period as an excuse to scare off a male guard which was epic). Jude isn’t particularly close with her siblings anymore, but she loves them fiercely, and the complexity of all the relationships in the book are wonderful. I haven’t read a relationship that makes me squeal like Jude’s and Cardan’s in a long time. The innuendo. The tension. The hate and fire and love. The tender moments.

Holly Black is a truly masterful writer. Even the prologue was magical. The action thrilled me, the tension had me on edge and I had to take several moments to process the deadly beauty of the Faerie Court. Holly Black can truly make me laugh, and I smiled throughout the entire book. I am in awe of Holly’s writing of the faeries, especially since they cannot lie so Holly had to find ways to lie without being untrue.  The contrast between the mortal and faerie world was brilliant, especially the depth with which growing up human in a faerie world shaped Jude, Taryn and Vivi.

When I came to the ending, I didn’t want to keep reading but I couldn’t stop racing towards it. This was the first time I’d read for a solid hour or so in a while, and it felt awesome. And terrifying because it meant the book was coming to an end. The ending (metaphorically) killed me, such delicious dark beauty and emotions and imagery. The whole book was as intoxicating and enchanting as a faerie glamour.

Would I survive this book? In the faerie world, no. In the human world, yes.