Looking back, I read a lot more in April than I originally realised. April was all about falling in love with a new favourite series, The Gilded Wolves. I read the first book for my bookclub and instantly had to pick up the sequel!
Here are the nine books I read in April…
April Wrap Up
- The Gilded Wolves, Roshani Chokshi ★★★★★
- The Silvered Serpents, Roshani Chokshi ★★★★☆
- This Can Never Not Be Real. Sera Milano [ARC] ★★★★☆
- White Fragility, Robin DiAngelo
- The Evening Tide, Jeremy Forsyth [Gifted] ★☆☆☆☆
- Dream Country, Ashaye Brown [ARC] ★★★☆☆
- The Lives of Saints, Leigh Bardugo ★★★★☆
- The Testaments, Margaret Atwood ★★★★☆
- The Crown of Gilded Bones, Jennifer L. Armentrout ★★★☆☆
Let’s get into the details
The Gilded Wolves and The Silvered Serpents
The Gilded Wolves and The Silvered Serpents are fantastic, underrated fantasy books following a cast of characters in Paris, who are tasked with an impossibly heist. A wealthy hotelier and his brother, an engineer, a historian and a dancer team up to steal an ancient artefact that the Order seek, powerful beings with abilities. So far, this series has delivered great plot, puzzles and equations, romance, one of my favourite found families and a great, diverse cast. I am counting down the days until I can escape back into this dangerous world when the final book, The Bronzed Beasts, comes out this September.
This Can Never Not Be Real
Electric Monkey publishing reached out and asking me to review their upcoming thriller release! When I tell you this book is intense, I mean that I had to put it down to breathe. Everything feels so real. I felt as though I was reading about a true event, following real teenagers. The stress, the atmosphere, the fear, the eeriness made my heart pound. I have never read a thriller before, but if they’re anything like This Can Never Not Be Real, then Sera Milano has opened my eyes to a new genre in this heart-pounding, intense story of survival during a terrorist attack. (You can read my full review here.)
We can always educate ourselves further, and with my goal to read three non-fiction books this year, I decided to read White Fragility. This book gave a really great insight into how white people react and process racism, and what we can do to support those who need their voices amplified.
The Evening Tide
I was kindly sent an ebook from the publishers in exchange for an honest review, but sadly, this 90 page book wasn’t for me. The Evening Tide follows Asharal, a highborn elf who is determined to take the throne and become immortal. The book is split into multiple perspectives and time lines. Without clear markers to indicate time, I found the plot quite difficult to follow in places. I believe the idea has a lot of potential but just missed the mark for me. (You can read my full review here)
Onwe publishing gifted my an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Dream Country follows three siblings, Theo, God of Sleep, Fanta, God of Dreams, and Tores, God of Nightmares. They are separated by gates crafted by Horn and Ivory, and animosity keeps them even further apart, with none of them trusting each other since the death of their mother. Overall, I enjoyed this book a lot. The concept of having a sibling rivalry and mythology was very entertaining, and I enjoyed how Dream Country was not as peaceful as we expected. This book explores themes of family, trust, ambition and power in a well built world that fantasy readers are sure to enjoy. (You can read my full review here.)
The Lives of the Saints
This book is a companion standalone to the Grishaverse, and contained stunning artwork and short stories all focused on the Saints in the Grishaverse. I loved learning more about them all. It was interesting to hear old and familiar tales, and wonder how they shaped this fantasy landscape.
Set some years after The Handmaid’s Tale, The Testaments follows three different perspectives, giving an insight into how Gilead is run, and how it can be taken down. I’ve read both books in The Handmaid’s Tale duology as audiobooks, and I highly recommend them. The full cast narrative does a great job at creating a very atmospheric experience.
The Crown of Gilded Bones
I will have a full review up within the next week or so, but I’ll give you a little insight into my thoughts. As the third book in the Blood and Ash series, this sadly has been my least favourite so far. Don’t get me wrong, I still had a lot of fun reading this book, but I found it very slowly and rambling in the middle section. What I loved about the first two books, From Blood and Ash and A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire, was how fast paced and action packed they were. This book had a really strong start, but I just wish there was more going on. That being said, if there’s one think Armentrout knows how to do, it’s write addictive characters. You can’t help but love them. (You can read my reviews for From Blood and Ash here, and A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire here.)
What did you read in April? Let me know in the comments below!
Thank you for watching,
Until next time,
Nicole / HalfWildBooks