Everything I Read In September 2021

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September was a pretty average reading month for me with some hits and some misses. I DNF’d one and worked through a couple books that were on my TBR for quite a while.

The DNF happened to be one of those perpetual TBR books. I was in a dystopian mood and only one of them was really good, the others fell a little flat for me.

Overall it wasn’t spectacular but it wasn’t as bad as October was either.

  • If you’re want to listen to some of these, consider trying Audible! You can get your first month free (one free book) plus tons of others they have for free.  Get that Audible deal here.
  • If you’re on more of a budget, try Scribd!  You can get your first month free there. You can read books and listen to audiobooks. It is unlimited (especially the reading) but if you listen to tons of new audiobooks you may be restricted after a few. I don’t listen to enough to confirm this, but I do use Scribd myself and like it a lot.
  • If you want to read more on your Kindle but don’t want to buy books, Kindle Unlimited is a wonderful option and right now you can get four months for $4.99! It’s usually $9.99 so this is a great deal. Get that deal here!

Sanctuary

Author: Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher

Genre: YA dystopian

Rating: 5/5

About the book: It’s 2032 and all US citizens are chipped and tracked. It’s almost impossible to survive as an undocumented immigrant, but Vali and her family are doing it.

It’s all going well until her mother’s counterfeit chip malfunctions and they’re forced to flee to California, a sanctuary state walled off from the rest of the country, when Deportation Forces raid their town.

Final thoughts: This was so good and so heartbreaking and I think it’s one everyone could stand to read.

I’ve wanted to read this since it first came out. I go it right when we got to Arizona in April and finally read it in September which feels like a year ago already haha.

Flow

Author: Clare Littlemore

Genre: YA dystopian

Rating: 3/5

About the book: There is an isolated society in a world with unimaginably high sea levels and life there, in The Beck, is tough. It’s constantly threatened by floodwaters and rules must be followed to ensure their safety.

Quin knows the governor is hiding something and when she is promoted to Patrol Sector, she hopes to find her lies with the extra freedom.

Life in Patrol isn’t what she expected, though. New recruits train hard where failure is not tolerated. Quin is warned digging too much could get her killed, but she can’t resist, only digging deeper.

Final thoughts: From GoodReads: I enjoyed this but there was a lot that was missing or weird

What is the beck even? Why does it exist? How did it come to be? Where is it? I don’t know!

Also, what do any of these people look like?

And this government system and how they handle people makes no sense at all. Not even a little bit.

AND at the end especially, Cameron starts speaking like a 90-year-old English woman? Why?

Death Deserved

Author: Jorn Lier Horst and Thomas Enger

Genre: Nordic noir

Rating: 4/5

About the book: Sonja never showed up to the launch of her controversial autobiography in Oslo. Later that day, Emma Ramm, a celebrity blogger, pays a visit to her house only to find signs of a struggle, a bib with the number one pinned to the TV, and no sign of Sonja.

Alexander Blix is assigned to head the investigation. He joins forces with Emma to get to the bottom of the increasing signs of Sonja and clues that are carefully calculated. Together they have to find and stop this merciless killer.

Final thoughts: I liked this one. I saw this recommended on Instagram and figured I’d give it a shot. I didn’t really know what it was about but once I realized it was celebrities, I was a little concerned I wouldn’t like it.

I did end up enjoying it though and am glad I gave it a shot!

The Killing Forest

Author: Sara Blaedel

Genre: Nordic noir

Rating: 3/5

About the book: Louise is back at work in the Special Search Agency, an elite unit of the National Police Department, after an extended leave. Her first case back involves a fifteen-year-old who vanished a week ago.

Soon she realizes he’s the son of a local butcher and takes the opportunity to combine this search with her personal investigation of her boyfriend’s death long ago.

She uncovers the toxic truths and deadly connections holding the small town of Hvalsoe together.

Final thoughts: From GoodReads: I feel pretty neutrally about this one. It did get confusing with everyone’s names, nicknames, and jobs being interchanged though.

Ten

Author: Gretchen McNeil

Genre: YA thriller

Rating: 4/5

About the book: Ten teens are having an exclusive party on Henry Island, having the weekend of their lives when they find a DVD with a sinister message: Vengeance is mine. 

They are cut off from the outside world thanks to a raging storm.  A killer is soon picking them off one by one, getting more violent as he does and now it’s up to Meg to find out who it is before more people die.

Final thoughts: From GoodReads: I don’t think this was amazing or anything and kind of wish the ending was different but I enjoyed it and was fairly creeped out reading it in the dark. It did what I wanted it to, scared and entertained me.

The Night Circus

Author: Erin Morganstern

Genre: YA fantasy

Rating: DNF 1/5

About the book: The circus isn’t there, until one night, it is. Inside the tent every night performing are Celia and Marco are two young magicians that have been trained since childhood in anticipation of a remarkable battle of imagination and will where only one will be left standing. Until they fall in love, that is. True love or not, fate must be played out for all performers involved.

Final thoughts: I had very high expectations for this one since it seems to be so loved in the booktube/bookstagram world but I just couldn’t.

From GoodReads: DNF at 100 pages. This is boring and I don’t care about anyone yet. Shouldn’t I by now?

Eve of Eridu

Author: Alanah Andrews

Genre: YA dystopian

Rating: 2/5

About the book: Emotions are forbidden in Eridu and the harvest separates those that are worthy and those that aren’t. You either continue the human race or are culled.

Eve was the poster child for emotional control until her brother was culled, now she’s having a hard time keeping her wristband the acceptable blue.

The next harvest is coming and she’ll do anything she can to avoid her brother’s fate.

Final thoughts: From GoodReads: Alexa, order more Lortnok so I can suppress my negative emotions about this book.

This is a generous 2.5 stars. It’s an interesting idea but could have been executed a lot better.

There is almost no information on this underground civilization. How long has it been around? How did they even build it with only six founders? How is there a wall surrounding them if they’re underground?

Also, Lortnok just doesn’t make sense in this world (the word itself). It just sounds like something from Welcome to Nightvale (the country of luftnarp) and that’s all I could think of when I read it.

SPOILERS BELOW

Why only praise Alexa? How many people are here? Why is there even a leaderboard If you surviving depends on this silly gene activation? Suppressing emotions activates a gene? What? How?

How do they expect to repopulate the earth if everyone is literally the same six people? There’s so much I just don’t get. And the more I think about it the more annoyed I am

The Harvest

Author: Alanah Andrews

Genre: YA dystopian (novella)

Rating: 3/5

About the book: This is the prequel to Eve of Eridu and instead of learning about her harvest, it’s her brother’s.

Since WWIII devastated the face of the Earth, emotions have been forbidden in the underground city of Eridu. They are monitored at all times and there is no room for friendship when you’re competing for your life.

Final thoughts: I need more Lortnok.

From GoodReads: This should have been part of the actual book and the prequel should have, I don’t know, explained why and how this society came to be? It wasn’t bad but it just felt like it didn’t need to be about this?

The Faceless Old Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home

Author: Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor

Genre: Sci-fi?

Rating: 4/5

About the book: Everyone in Night Vale knows the faceless old woman who secretly lives in your home but no one knows who she really is or how she got there. Until now.

This is her story, jumping between the present in Night Vale and her past on a Mediterranean estate, in the criminal underworld, on a ship of smugglers, and more.

Final thoughts: From GoodReads: I wish this was actually in night vale or not of it was but I still really enjoyed it and liked that weird little night valean things still happened (like the luftnarpian wedding) though.

Kingdom of the Wicked

Author: Kereri Maniscalco

Genre: YA fantasy

Rating: 4/5

About the book: Emilia and Vittoria are streghe, witches secretly living among humans. Vittoria missed dinner one night and Emilia ends up finding her twin desecrated beyond belief. Emilia is on a mission to find her killer at any cost, even if it means using forbidden dark magic.

Then she meets Wrath, one of the Wicked princes of Hell she has been warned against her entire life. He claims to be on her side but when it comes to the wicked, nothing is as it seems.

Final thoughts: I won’t lie, this was a big cover buy for me. It did sound interesting, too, but that cover. I even pre-ordered it and it took me this long to read it haha.

My expectations were actually pretty low after hearing some not-so-good reviews but I ended up liking this one a lot! And it’s one of the first fantasy books I read almost all summer which also had me worried I wouldn’t jive with it.

From GoodReads: I understand why people don’t like this, it could use a little more. It felt like a demon scavenger hunt meets the Chamber of Secrets at one point but overall I really enjoyed it and will definitely read the next one

The Forgotten Girls

Author: Sara Blaedel

Genre: Nordic noir

Rating: 3/5

About the book: An unidentified woman is found dead in a forest in Denmark. A large scar on her face should make her easily identifiable but she hasn’t even been reported missing.

Four days later, Louise Rick, the missing person department commander, is still without answers. When a photo is released to the media, a woman says she recognizes her as someone named Lismette that she used to care for at the state mental institution years ago. She was an abandoned “forgotten girl” and soon Louise discovers something disturbing.

Lismette had a twin and they were both issued death certificates over 30 years ago. As she investigates, she uncovers more crimes and secrets along with a terrible link to her own carefully concealed past.

Final thoughts: This wasn’t necessarily bad but I just wasn’t that into it. I had high hopes and love the cover but it didn’t blow me away. I think Louise is a lot of why I didn’t like it.

From GoodReads: I don’t think I like Louise very much.

Have you read any of these? Which ones? What did you read in September?

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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