In March, I ended up reading 33 books in total, which is the most I’ve read so far this year. I’m slowly catching up to my Goodreads challenge. I also had no less than 5 five star reads that weren’t rereads! Hopefully I’ll be able to keep this up throughout April.
In this post, I’ll share my Goodreads reviews of my 4 and 5 star reads of February. Want to keep track of my reading in more detail? Feel free to add me on Goodreads!
Sarah Kapit – Get a Grip, Vivy Cohen!
This was a very special read to me, because it was the first time I saw an autistic main character in middlegrade. I gave it 5 stars, and my full review will be up soon!
Cassandra Clare – Chain of Gold
I didn’t review this but it was just as good as I expected, and I loved it so much.
Kiley Reid – Such a Fun Age
I received an Audio Listening Copy from Libro.fm and the publisher, in exchange for my honest review. I thought this was a really good read, my full review will be up sometime soon.
Yehudi Mercado – Fun Fun Fun World
“It’s not a dream if you believe it.”
This graphic novel was such a treat. Quick, fresh and funny, with a really lovely artstyle. It also has me craving churros.
Anna Meriano – A Sprinkle of Spirits
This was even better than the first book, I loved it so much. I laughed, I cried, and it reminded me once again of why I love middlegrade so much.
Anna Meriano – A Mixture of Mischief
This series is honestly a new favourite! I binged the audiobook this afternoon and it was so fun.
Adriana Herrera – American Dreamer
I’m reading this series entirely out of order – I read eARCs of book 3 and 4 first. I did enjoy those, but this one is definitely my favourite so far. This is also the first one I listened to as an audiobook, and the writing style worked a lot better for me that way. If you’re interested in picking up this series, I would very much recommend going the audio route!
This was also my favourite book in the series so far because I connected to these main characters the most. I also especially loved the setting: one MC owns a food truck and wants to start his own restaurant, and the other MC works at the library.
CWs: racism, religious homophobia, cancer, hospital, sex
Adriana Herrera – American Fairytale
I didn’t review this book, but it was just as much of a comfort read as the previous one.
Xan West – Their Troublesome Crush
This book felt like a warm hug, and I loved the autism rep. You can expect my full review soon.
Sophie Gonzales – Only Mostly Devastated
I’m not even really a Grease fan but still I was hyped to read a queer retelling! Overall, this book stuck pretty close to the movie but updated it in a lot of essential ways, and I had a great time reading it.
The tone of voice drew me in right away. The writing style was light hearted, but that didn’t mean the book shied away from more serious stuff. I actually found myself crying a couple of times.
I did have some issues with the pacing and development of the book. At times, the book felt either overly slow or overly rushed, and I feel like some aspects were a little underdeveloped because of that. But ultimately, that didn’t take away from my enjoyment, and I thought it was a pretty great read. It was also a really quick read.
My favourite aspect of this book was how it shows that people all need to come to terms with their sexuality in their own way. And they all have a different path to take before being ready to come out. I was afraid at some point that Ollie might pressure Will into coming out, and I was glad to see that didn’t happen.
Rep: gay MC, Latinx bisexual (questioning) love interest, bisexual side character, Black side character, fat Brown side character
CWs: cancer, death of a family member, homophobia, toxic masculinity, fatphobia, diet talk
Justin Richardson, Peter Parnell, & Henry Cole – And Tango Makes Three
I didn’t review this picture book, but it was adorable. I listened to the audiobook while reading along in the pdf, which was a great choice. The audiobook is narrated by Neil Patrick Harris and it’s excellent.
TJ Klune – The Extraordinaries
Actual rating: 4.5
This was exactly what I needed right now, such a delight. It has to be the funniest book I’ve read in a while.
Granted, this book won’t be for everyone. It’s not to be taken seriously, and the brand of humour is one that likely won’t work for everyone. It worked really well for me though, and I ended up crying laughing a bunch of times. It’s such a ridiculous book, but in the best way imagineable.
I shipped Nick and Seth right from the beginning, they are so very precious. And so very dense and so very clueless, especially Nick. It takes him ages to realize he even has a crush, and it’s amazing.
Something that made this book extra special was the own voices ADHD rep.
CWs: violence, past death of a parent/grief, homophobia, internalized ableism, use of the d slur, hospital
Ada Maria Soto – And Everything Nice
This was short but sweet, literally. It was a really quick, really fluffy read, with a disaster gay and a lot of baking. I just want to know what happened with the banana bread, though!
Jenny Lee – Anna K
Having read Anna Karenina last year, this was such a treat. I love retellings, and it was so refreshing to see a retelling of something that’s not a fairytale. This is a pretty close retelling, but it’s updated in very crafty ways so that it reads contemporary, and I thought this was so well done. This is not to say the book is exactly the same as Anna Karenina – it definitely has some surprises in store. I would very much recommend this to fans of Anna Karenina and/or Gossip Girl. Please do be aware that you will likely not enjoy this book if you don’t like reading about unlikeable characters.
Rep: biracial (half Korean & half white) MCs, Black Jewish MC with anxiety, Jewish MCs
CWs: attempted suicide, overdose, fatal train accident, car accident, rape/dubious consent, cheating, animal death, depression, fatphobia, diet talk, drug (ab)use, alcohol use, mention of panic attacks
Yukhi Kamatani – Our Dreams at Dusk, vol. 1
This was my first time really trying manga and I really liked it!
CWs: attempted suicide, suicidal thoughts, (internalized) homophobia
Adiba Jaigirdar – The Henna Wars
There’s been a lot of buzz surrounding this debut, and it’s so well deserved. This book deals with Nishat, who comes out to her parents and has to deal with them struggling to accept her, as well as cultural appropriation at her school, when she starts a henna design business for a school assignment but one of her classmates does too. It was a fairly heavy book at times, between Nishat’s family’s homophobia, the racist bullying Nishat deals with at school, and her being outed at school, so please be aware of that. But it also had many cute moments, and I really enjoyed it.
What I especially appreciated about this book, is how realistic the relationships between the teenagers are. I vividly remember being a teenager and not really having friendships extend beyond school, and how easily friendships could change and end.
I also really appreciated the sibling relationship in this book. I always love seeing sisters in books who love each other and have each other’s backs.
Rep: Bengali/Bangladeshi lesbian main character, Brazilian-Irish (Afrolatinx) bisexual love interest, Bengali/Bangladeshi side characters, Korean side character
CWs: racism & racist bullying, homophobia & homophobic bullying, public outing, cultural appropriation
Isabella Rotman & Luke Howard – A Quick & Easy Guide to Consent
These “Quick & Easy Guides” are so helpful and they tackle difficult subjects in a really lighthearted way. I would very much recommend this new one, which is all about how consent works and why it’s important. I especially appreciated that it distinguishes between basic consent (the right to say no), which is important, but also a pretty low bar, and affirmative consent, which is about more than just saying “yes” or “no”, and is all about communication and sharing wants and needs. I would say this is a must read for anyone, because understanding consent is a must for anyone, not just when it comes to sex.
Rep: non-binary main character, characters of colour, same-gender couples
CWs: discussions of non-consent and sexual violence
Elizabeth Acevedo – Clap When You Land
This was once again a beautiful Elizabeth Acevedo book, and a beautiful verse novel! If the author is narrating the audiobook again, I already can’t wait to do a reread.
CWs: plane crash, death of a parent, past death of a parent, grief, attempted rape, assault, sexual assault, threat of forced sex work
Xan West – Tenderness
I didn’t review this, but this is a prequel story to Their Troublesome Crush, and I really liked this one as well.
Margarita Montimore – Oona Out of Order
This was a great read that packed more of an emotional punch than I expected. My full review will be up soon.
Taylor Brooke – Fortitude Smashed
I just have to give this book 5 stars purely based on my intense enjoyment of it. I would highly, highly recommend this if you like romance and character driven stories. This couple had the absolute best dynamic, and I truly loved them. I always wait to order a sequel until after I’ve finished the first book, but here, I knew I needed it asap and I ordered it when I was halfway through the book. This was just absolutely delightful and I can’t wait for more.
Phil Stamper – The Gravity of Us
Ever hold off on picking up a book because you’re anticipating it so much? That happened to me with this book. But I was determined to finally read it in March. Luckily, this one didn’t disappoint.
I actually liked it a whole lot! The setting is super nerdy and interesting, the main character is flawed but goes through a lot of growth, and there’s a great focus on mental illness – the main character’s mum has anxiety, and the love interest has depression, and these conditions are regularly talked about. I also really liked the exploration of how social media is a blessing and a curse all at once.
Something else I really appreciated is how no specific labels are used in this novel. Both the main character and the love interest are queer, and they both state they’re attracted to multiple genders, but the main character explicitly says he might never find a label that suits him exactly. And I loved how this was not a plot point, it’s not something he figures out throughout the course of the book. Because he doesn’t have to!
Renée Watson – Some Places More Than Others
I took a bath and devoured this book in one sitting, which was just what I needed. This was such a deeply loveable book.
How many books did you end up reading in March? What was your favourite read of the month?