July 2023 Books

Books Reread

I won’t be reviewing these two David Mitchell books in this blog post because they are part of my Big Summer David Mitchell Reread, which will have its own blog post.

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell
**Book Hangover Alert
4/5 moon-gray cats

Black Swan Green by David Mitchell
**Book Hangover Alert
4/5 moon-gray cats

New Books Read

Hodder & Stoughton

Little Thieves by Margaret Owen
Little Thieves book 1 of 2
I’ve been wanting to read this mostly because it has a nice cover. It was fun; I enjoyed it. Little Thieves is a retelling of the Goose Girl fairytale and it’s very fresh. There’s a heist, a curse to be broken, dark magic to beat, low gods to satisfy. I liked the world and the folklore a lot. I wasn’t as into it in the first half, because I found Vanja a bit unlikable, and it was frustrating that it took her so long to realize that the only way she would be able to break her curse would be to work together and make friends. Once she started being friends with Gisele, Ragne, and Emeric, I was much more into it.
3.5/5 castle kobolds

Macmillan Publishers

To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini
Fractalverse book 1 of 2
CW: war, attempted genocide
Like many people who were young in the 2000s, I loved the Eragon books. Then it seemed like Paolini kind of dropped off the face of the earth for a while. Now he returns with an epic sci-fi saga. Surveying an uncolonized planet, Kira finds an alien relic. When it binds itself to her, she, and all of humanity, is pulled into an intergalactic war with more than one alien species. On top of that, Kira has to learn to live in symbiosis with the alien presence that has bonded itself with her. I did read the whole thing and at 32 hours on audio, that is recommendation in and of itself. However, I wasn’t that into it. I was interested enough to finish but I don’t know that I’ll read the second book. I did like the characters of the crew of the Wallfish and I thought the concept of the ship minds was interesting.
3/5 jellies

Little, Brown and Company

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
**Book Hangover Alert
I’d heard good things about this book, but I was a little underwhelmed by Jamaica Inn by du Maurier. But I love a gothic horror so I had to check Rebecca off the list. Working as a companion for an older woman in Monte Carlo, the young, unnamed narrator meets the widower Maxim de Winter and they impulsively get married. When she returns to his estate with him, she finds the whole household and community and Maxim himself still haunted by his dead wife Rebecca. It was really good. I’m still thinking about it. The beginning was just a little slow but du Maurier has fabulous tension building and created such interesting contrasts between our unnamed narrator and Rebecca. It was so interesting how even though Mrs. de Winter is our narrator and point of view character, she fades in comparison to Rebecca who looms so large over the story, despite being dead for the whole thing.
4/5 fancy dress balls

**Book Hangover Alert indicates the kind of book that will leave you full up on love. Satisfied, but wishing the book never had to end. You’ll be laying on the floor with no idea what to do with yourself (other friends have called this feeling Good Book Depression or say that certain books necessitate Floor Time). This is the kind of book that gets its teeth in you and won’t let go easily. After the last page you’ll be thinking about this book for a long time. You’ll bother all your friends trying to get them to read it so that you won’t be alone in your Hangover.