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REVIEW: QUAINT CREATURES (A SIDEWAYS TALE)

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A cozy creature feature... Andrew D. Meredith is an author whose work I've come to enjoy a great deal. I've made my way through pretty much his entire back catalog at this point and was ready to immediately scoop up his first foray into the cozy subgenre. HOW I RATED IT  5/5  As someone who hasn't really read any cozy fantasy before, I didn't fully know what to expect with QUAINT CREATURES, but I had a wonderful time with this episodic, slice of life fantasy. The charming characters, the quaint little creatures, and all the hijinks that the gang gets up to made for a deeply memorable low-ish stakes adventure.  CHARACTERS Our tale is told by Norrik Softstep who is a retired dungeon inspector that now owns a magical pet store and veterinary clinic for creatures of all shapes and sizes. He and his wife run their business outside of their home which happens to be a rather enchanted entity in it's own right given that it's hallways are seemingly endless in a way that

MINI REVIEW: THE HOBBIT AND THE LORD OF THE RINGS BOX SET

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One does not simply reread The Lord of the Rings...  I'd treated myself to this box set quite some time ago, but after far too long a delay, I finally decided to start rereading this wonderful series at the start of the new year and have been making my way through it month by month.   HOW I RATED IT  5/5  These incredible stories were well worth the purchase on their own, but this beautiful box set with intricate illustrations by the talented Alan Lee is one bookish purchase I have absolutely no regrets about splurging on.    CONTENT There's probably not all that much that hasn't already been said about these books. I guess I will just state that these stories are very special to me and it's taken me far too long to reread them. When I first read these back in High School, I fell in love instantly with The Hobbit and really enjoyed The Lord of The Rings , but I had to get used to how different it was from the Peter Jackson films and I was not prepared for the infamous T

MAY READS

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May did not include a massive list of completed books, but I made some awesome progress in my Stormlight Archive journey and also wrapped up my reread of The Lord of the Rings . On top of that, I even got around to a little poetry! 1. Who Am I When I'm Not Watching?  Even though I don't read much poetry, my reading experience with this was  5/5  ! Written by a friend of mine who kindly gifted me a copy, this collection of poems is somber and introspective. I had a really lovely time reading through it while on vacation and there are a couple of pieces in here that have really stuck with me.    Full review here 2. Dawnshard Somewhat underwhelming, but still an enjoyable  3/5  adventure Coming hot off the coattails of Oathbringer probably did not help this novel-sized novella which bridges the gap between the third and fourth mainline Stormlight Archive books. It's an enjoyable enough nautical adventure that contains some really interesting tidbits of lore both for Roshar a

MINI REVIEW: WHO AM I WHEN I'M NOT WATCHING?

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Who are we really, when we're not watching?...  I always think about working more poetry into my reading, but I never really know what to turn to in order to do that. Fortunately, I have a friend who's a poet and he was kind enough to give me a copy of his book.  HOW I RATED IT  5/5  I don't read a ton of poetry, but I had such a nice time with this short, moody, and reflective collection of poems.  DISCLAIMER:  I was kindly gifted a copy of this book by the author. I do also know him personally and follow him on Instagram (@poetrybynicholas) where he posts a lot of different types of poetry.   CONTENT As someone who doesn't consume a whole ton of poetry, I'm never really sure how to judge it. I have a rather pedestrian appreciation of the art form and am mostly just affected by how it makes me feel as opposed to how I consider a novel based on how much I liked the characters, world, and plot. In the case of WHO AM I WHEN I'M NOT WATCHING ? I found myself transp

REVIEW: DAWNSHARD (THE STORMLIGHT ARCHIVE # 3.5)

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Those who do not sleep... After being absolutely blown away by  OATHBRINGER,  I had no choice but to dive right into the follow up novella, DAWNSHARD. The fact that it happened to be included with Audible Premium's rotating list of freebies made this an even more perfect way to kickstart my reading month.  HOW I RATED IT  3/5  Although this novel-length "novella" has some high points, I ultimately found it to be the weakest entry into  THE STORMLIGHT ARCHIVE , mainly due to the lack of "star power" in the cast and a general sense of disconnect from the mainline plot of the series.  Please note: As this novella takes place fairly deep into THE STORMLIGHT ARCHIVE , I will be mentioning people, places, and events which would likely be considered spoilers for past books in the series, but will aim to avoid major spoilers for the DAWNSHARD novella.  CHARACTERS Even though Sanderson is largely famous for his ability to plot out intricate narrative threads that all w

APRIL READS

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April was a much more productive reading month in terms of volume, largely thanks to the inclusion of a shorter story and a graphic novel.  1. Oathbringer This somehow managed to top the already  5/5  experience I had with the prior book All of my fears that this would be a huge letdown after how much I loved Words of Radiance ended up being completely shattered. While I would still strongly argue that these novels could be shorter, I think this is some of the best fantasy I have ever read. The action, the plot twists, and the endearing character moments were all just so incredible. It brought me smiles, it ripped my heart out, and it sent my mind racing all in equal measure. While I've heard that fans were not quite as thrilled with the next book in the series, I honestly don't think I will be able to help myself from tearing right into it as soon as possible.    Full review here 2. Children of Time This   4/5  read was a satisfyingly bizarre trip across space and time  There

REVIEW: CHILDREN OF TIME (CHILDREN OF TIME #1)

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You're not even my monkeys... I've heard a lot of praise for Tchaikovsky and his unique storytelling concepts. After having picked up CHILDREN OF TIME during an Audible promotion, I've been waiting for the mood to strike for me to give this a try.   HOW I RATED IT  4/5  While very strange in a lot of ways, this book certainly delivered on a unique premise and excecated it in a way that felt rather special.  PLOT/TONE While this book does have a plotline it follows, I would say that the main focus of the story is primarily with the concept. There are certainly twists and turns along the way, but the real surprises come in the form of the way that the various concepts the book puts forward are explored. The basic setup is fairly straightforward. This is a bleak futuristic setting where humanity has damaged the planet Earth beyond repair, but has also taken to the stars. Through a series of events in the early chapters, we learn that all that remains of the human race is now