Everything I Read In March 2020

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Every month I’m going to do a round-up of everything I read that month. Even though it’s April now, I’m going to do March, too. I’ll share a brief description, my rating of it, how I read it (audiobook, Kindle, or paper book), and my final thoughts.

Tortured Dreams by Hadena James

From Goodreads

Aislinn Cain is approached by the US Marshals to help on a case because of her in depth knowledge of medieval torture devices. A serial killer is using different torture methods to kill his victims around the US and Ace is here to help.

Rating: 5/5

Format read: Kindle

Genre: Mystery/thriller

Final thoughts: I love this book. I read this for the first time in 2016 I think but re-read it this year and still loved it. It’s a little graphic and dark, so if that bothers you, I would skip this one, but if you don’t mind it, give it a shot! Plus, it’s free! And if you like long series, this one has like, 15 books. It’s the first in the Dreams and Reality series.

The Price Guide to the Occult by Leslye Walton

From Goodreads

Rona Blackburn landed on Anathema Island more than a century ago and wasn’t welcomed with open arms. The islanders wanted to burn “the witch” out of her home, so she cursed them. More than 100 years later, all Nor Blackburn wants to do is live a normal teenage life, but that all changes when The Price Guide to the Occult shows up in their shop.

Rating: 3/5

Format read: Paper book/audiobook

Genre: YA fantasy/magic

Final thoughts: I liked this, but it wasn’t one I was super excited to finish. And by that I mean it took me like, two months to finish. I picked it up from the library this winter and got about a third of the way through when I had to return it.

Then I found it on Scribd and finished listening to it on my drive out to Utah. I don’t think it was a bad book, but I might not have been in the right mood for it. There is self harm in it as well.

Anonymous Dreams by Hadena James

From Goodreads

The SCTU is back and sticking close to home in this one. Aislinn and the team are hunting down the lady burner after coming across a legit snuff film. He rapes and strangles women while he films it, then burns the body simply as a forensic counter measure. As they investigate, they realize how difficult it is to trace the films because everyone involved is anonymous.

Rating: 4/5

Format read: Kindle

Genre: Mystery/thriller

Final thoughts: This is the latest book in the Dreams and Reality series and I liked it almost as much as the rest of the series. I thought this one was interesting because it involves the dark web and that always hooks me.

Feed by M.T. Anderson

From Goodreads

Titus and his friends go to the moon for spring break thinking everything is going to be great, but they go to a party and things go down hill fast. His mind has basically been taken over by the Feed directly implanted into his brain. Titus is inundated with ads and recommendations on what to buy from Weatherbee & Crotch while everyone figures out how to accessorize the lesions they’re getting. Then he meets a girl named Violet who is ready to fight the system.

Rating: 4/5

Format read: Paper book

Genre: YA sci-fi

Final thoughts: This was a weird one. It took a long time to get used to the writing style, and by the time I did, it changed. But, as I read more of it I started to enjoy it a lot more. I had no idea what to expect with this, but it was a lot sadder than I thought it would be. I did enjoy it though. If you like sci-fi, this might be good for you.

Elysium Dreams by Hadena James

From Goodreads

In the cold, dark, winter of Alaska, a serial killer is tracking his victims and skinning them alive in state parks. The SCTU is called in to find him They have to overcome the hostile climate and citizens to find the killer before he strikes again.

Rating: 5/5

Format read: Kindle

Genre: Mystery/thriller

Final thoughts: I’ve been working on a re-read of the whole series and this is the second book in it. They tend to be normal mystery/thrillers, so if that’s your thing, check this out. It’s not my favorite in the series, but I still enjoy it a lot and will probably read it again.

Educated by Tara Westover

From Goodreads

Tara was raised in Idaho by survivalists. Her childhood was tumultuous at best, full of injuries, abuse, and almost no education. Her brother was the first in the family to leave for college and she followed in his footsteps, but it wasn’t a smooth ride. This is the story of her life growing up in a survivalist household and the challenges she faced as she moved out into the world.

Rating: 5/5

Format read: Paper book

Genre: Memoir

Final thoughts: I wasn’t sure about this one at first since we know Tara is an unreliable narrator, but I was able to just put that aside and wow. This was just wild! I would highly recommend this if you have any interest in memoirs or extreme religious experiences and really, even if you don’t you should read it.

A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah

From Goodreads

Ishmael Beah was a child soldier during the war in Sierra Leone. This shows what it was like being a child soldier and being forced into a war. He ran away when word of rebels invading came around, but soon he was rounded up by the government and forced to fight.

Rating: 4/5

Format read: Paper book

Genre: Memoir

Final thoughts: This was a wild ride. I started reading this years ago but never finished and read it for my book club in March. If you have any interest in memoirs, war, or west Africa, this is a must-read.

The Troop by Nick Cutter

From Goodreads

Every year, Tim Riggs leads a group of scouts on a camping trip near Prince Edward Island. But this year was different. A horrendously hungry, pale, and skinny man shows up on the island and exposes them all to the nightmare bioengineered bug. It’s a harrowing struggle for survival to fight infection and each other.

Rating: 4/5

Format read: Scribd/audiobook

Genre: Horror

Final thoughts: This one took me a long time to finish, too. I started reading it on Scribd and had to finish listening to it or I never would have finished it. This one is pretty graphic, but if you like horror and being scared, it’s a must-read.

The Pandemic Century by Mark Honigsbaum

From Goodreads

The Pandemic Century talks about all the pandemics the world has experienced from the Spanish Flu until Zika. We get to learn about the viruses, how they spread, where they come from, and how they were handled. It covers the Spanish Flu, Pneumonic Plague, Parrot Flu, Leggionaires Disease, AIDS, SARS, Ebola, and Zika.

Rating: 4/5

Format read: Audiobook

Genre: Non-fiction

Final thoughts: This was, uhh, quite fitting for the time being, but I got it from the library in the winter and never read it, so I listened to it while I embroidered. It’s non-fiction and about history, so it was pretty dry at times, but I also thought parts of it were pretty interesting.

American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins

From Goodreads

Lydia lives in Acapulco with her son and husband, a journalist. Lydia owns a bookshop and meets the charming Javier who, unbeknownst to her, is the Los Jardineros Jefe, the newest drug cartel that has taken over the city. Soon, Lydia and Luca are forced to flee and make their way north to get away from all of the violence and death. This is the story of their journey with each other and some new found friends made along the way.

Rating: 5/5

Format read: Paper book (I won an ARC)

Genre: Fiction

Final thoughts: While this is a controversial book, I won a copy this winter and started reading it before all the negative press. I started it in January and finished it in March. I probably would have read this anyways out of pure curiosity. I did enjoy this and am glad I read it. Now that I’ve read this, I am going to read some other books written by people that have actually experienced border crossings and life in Mexico.

Have you read any of these? Which ones? What did you think of them? What did you read in March?

Author: Megan Johnson

I'm Megan, a Wisconsin native currently working my way around the US. You can probably find me reading on the beach, wandering through the desert, or hanging out in a cute little coffee shop.

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