FEBRUARY READS

February was a small, but mighty month with some great reads that moved my reading goals for this year along nicely.  

1. Arcanum Unbounded (The Rosharan System and my  Overall Thoughts)


This ended up being a super interesting 4/5 experience for me

The only section/novella that I had left coming in to February was the one that is set on Roshar (the world of The Stormlight Archive), titled Edgedancer. While this got off to a slower start and Lift is still not my favorite character from the series, I ended up really enjoying her development, the key story moments which had a surprising amount of impact on the overall world, and the setting in which the narrative plays out which is one that the mainline series hasn't explore much at all. 

Overall, I think this was a super fun collection that could be enjoyed in different ways. It's just important for readers to understand that a number of the stories within are directly tied to Sanderson's flagship novels and contain some heavy spoilers for them, making this more of a companion book to the greater Cosmere as opposed to something that can casually be read like any other anthology. 
 

2. Defiant


This  4/5 read was another worthy entry into this series. 

Even though I initially had some frustrations due to my thinking that this was the end of a trilogy (which it isn't), I definitely found my enjoyment of this much more on-par with that of the first book. The story continues to get more expansive and add more POVs, but I found it to be largely more focused around a central conflict this time around and I think that went a long way towards my ability to feel invested in each chapter. I also enjoyed the side cast a lot more though some members of Talia's court were sidelined more than I would have liked. 
 

BONUS: The Fellowship of the Ring


This was an even more wonderful experience than the first time: 5/5 on reread

This month, I've again saved the best for last. I continued to work my way through the illustrated box set of this wonderful series and was nervous to see what I would think of The Fellowship of the Ring, since my first reading experience was so jarring after seeing the movie first (though it's worth noting I still enjoyed the book). I can say for sure that I loved this even more on reread. The characters are similar, yet distinct from their movie counterparts, the prose is lush, the journey is almost-cozy, and I honestly even found myself loving the infamous Tom Bombadil sequence. I do still enjoy The Hobbit more, but I think that is partly because that is a complete story whereas this is really just the first part of The Lord of the Rings epic. I purposefully read this one extra slowly, trying to savor each moment and soak in every little detail. I probably could have gotten to some extra books if I'd read this at a quicker pace, but I frankly have no regrets about it whatsoever. 

Looking ahead to March, I have already begun the third Stormlight Archive book on Audio and may or may not actually manage to finish that within the month (due to how massive it is). I also intend to continue my journey through Middle Earth with The Two Towers, but I think I'd like to break up this reread with a book that I recently won in a giveaway that is also on the shorter side (by SFF standards anyway).

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