Mini Reviews: September 2020 (Becca’s Bookoplathon)

I don’t want to start this post with a huge cliché, but doesn’t time go fast?! We’re already halfway through October and I still have to write up my September mini reviews. In September itself I only posted two things on the blog, including the mini reviews for August. I feel like time goes too fast to properly catch up, but I’m sure that’s something a lot of people can relate to. Plus, in 2020, time just seems to work a little bit differently.

Anyway, on to the books – that’s what you’re here for after all. September was an amazing reading month for me! I participated in a readathon again (you can find my TBR for that here) and that turned out to be a great motivator to read a lot of books that had been on my TBR for ages. And most of them were so good! I gave out a ton of 4 stars this month. The readathon in question was Becca’s Bookoplathon, which is a readathon that’s all about playing a special Monopoly board to find out your reading prompts. It’s a lot of fun! I ended up with six books on my Bookoplathon TBR, and managed to finish one additional book during the month, which means I read a grand total of seven books in September.

Let’s get to them!

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid ★★★★☆ (4)

This book had been on my TBR ever since I read and loved Daisy Jones and the Six by the same author a year and a half ago. I was so excited to finally read Evelyn Hugo, and although I did love it, I think I would have loved it more if I’d read it before Daisy Jones, because the books are quite similar in essence. Evelyn Hugo is an aging Hollywood star who has decided to finally tell the story of her life and her seven marriages to one journalist and one journalist only: Monique Grant. Monique is baffled by Evelyn’s choice to entrust her story to her, but she goes along with it and gets swept up in Evelyn’s incredible story, just like I got swept up in it. The characters are beautifully complex and rather flawed, which made me love them. The book also explores some interesting and important topics and I just thought it was a great novel. I definitely want to read more by Taylor Jenkins Reid!

Of Curses and Kisses by Sandhya Menon ★★☆☆☆ (2)

This month only had one disappointing read, and that was Of Curses and Kisses, which is a YA retelling of Beauty and the Beast set at a boarding school for the rich and elite. Our main characters are princess Jaya Rao, who is the daughter of a maharaja from India, and Gray Emerson, the son of a British lord. The Rao and Emerson families have hated each other for generations, and Jaya is determined to bring ruin to Gray. Of course, you can guess what happens next. I was very excited to read this because I love Sandhya Menon’s writing, but, unfortunately, I didn’t really like this book. The characters felt rather one-dimensional and the pacing of the story was a little off as well. I simply wasn’t very invested in the story and it felt rather forgettable.

Nevermoor by Jessica Townsend ★★★★⭑ (4.5)

My favourite novel of the month! I absolutely loved this book. Nevermoor is a middle grade novel about a girl named Morrigan Crow, who is cursed and destined to die on her eleventh birthday. That doesn’t happen, though, as she is whisked off before that to a magical city called Nevermoor, where she’s entered into a competition to become a member of the elite Wunder Society. I just had such an amazing time reading this and it made me feel incredibly happy. It’s also the first in a series of what’s going to be six books, I believe, so there’s still so much more fun to be had! If you’re looking for a book that has similar vibes to Harry Potter but doesn’t have the bigoted author to go along with it, give Nevermoor a go! It’s whimsical, magical and absolutely wonderful.

Het Achterhuis by Anne Frank ★★★★☆ (4)

Most of you will know this book as Diary of a Young Girl, but we all know it as Anne Frank’s diary. This is one of the books on my list of ten books I ‘have’ to read in 2020 because I’m from the Netherlands and I’d never read this before, which I thought needed to change. I took my time reading this because it made me very sad at times and I couldn’t read big stretches of it in one sitting. It’s so incredibly sad to think of what happened to Anne while reading about her hopes for the future and her fears about the present. It was also amazing to see her grow up within her own writing. At the start of the book, she’s still a child, writing about children’s topics like which boys like her and who is her favourite friend. As she gets older and her situation gets more dire, her writing matures as well and I had to remind myself at times of how young she was still. This is such a powerful and important book and I’m glad I’ve now read it.

Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert ★★★★☆ (4)

I had seen this romance novel around a lot, so when I needed a book for Bookoplathon that featured a character with a disability or chronic illnes, I picked up the ebook for this. Chloe Brown has fibromyalgia and has led a very careful life for the past few years because of that. After having a near death experience, she decides that she needs to ‘get a life’. She moves out of her family home and into an apartment, which is when she meets Red, who is the other main character. They really don’t like each other at first, but, of course, that changes, because this is a romance novel. I really loved Chloe and I enjoyed getting to know more about her life with a chronic illness because I don’t get to read about that very often. I felt like it was a very good portrayal (although I don’t know much about fibromyalgia). Red is an amazing character as well and I loved the romance between them and how they worked through their problems together.

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng ★★★★☆ (4)

Another book that had been on my TBR for over a year! This was my first Celeste Ng, but I definitely want to read more of her work – and I can’t wait to watch the TV series that’s been made of this novel! I find it a bit difficult to summarise Little Fires Everywhere in a few sentences, but it’s about a suburb of Cleveland where everything is meticulously planned; not just the neighbourhood itself but also the lives of the people living there. The Richardson family embodies this spirit perfectly, and they’re thrown off course a little when Mia Warren and her daughter Pearl move into their rental home. The central theme of the novel is motherhood and it’s explored beautifully and painfully from multiple different sides. This definitely isn’t a plot-driven novel; there’s plot, but it’s secondary to the characters and their development. I enjoyed it very much!

The Weight of the Stars by K. Ancrum ★★★⭑☆ (3.5)

After I finished this novel, I wasn’t entirely sure what I thought of it and I must say that I am still a little on the fence. The Weight of the Stars tells the (love) story of Ryann and Alexandria. Ryann lives in a trailer park with her little brother and his baby son. She’s quick to anger and gets into a lot of fights, but she’s also a fierce friend. When a teacher at her high school asks her to make Alexandria feel at home at her new school, Ryann takes an interesting approach, which doesn’t end well – initially. It’s a story about love and friendship, but space is also heavily featured as it is set some time in the future. I thought the story was very beautiful and raw, but I also kept missing something that would make the novel truly touch me.

And that’s it for the books I read in September! Have you read any of these books, and if so, do you agree with my review? What was your favourite (or least favourite!) book of the month? Let me know in the comments and we can chat about it!

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Hi! I'm Anne and I love reading, baking and writing about both of those things. Welcome!

5 thoughts on “Mini Reviews: September 2020 (Becca’s Bookoplathon)

    1. Little Fires Everywhere was really good! I started watching the TV series yesterday night and I loved the first episode – Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon are amazing in it!

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