Recently Read #2: Winter 2019 Releases

Hey you guys! I’ve come out of my One Day At A Time focused weekend with two new blog posts? Don’t ask me how that even happened, but here we are. xD

In case you missed it, I fangirled about the show a bit for Friday’s post (yes, I binged the entire third season in the afternoon and shared a post about it at night) and highly recommend you check it out – the show too, though. Definitely the show too!

For today’s post, we’re returning to my Recently Read posts to talk about some more books I finished lately – I’m already up to nine books. Nine. And we’re not even halfway through February.

For some reason, I kept putting off writing this post (it may or may not have to do with my feelings about one of the books I discuss here) but I figured I’ll get too far behind if I don’t get to it soon, which was exactly the push I needed! Here’s me talking about books 5-9 that I read in 2019! πŸ™‚

I used to include reviewed books in my monthly wrap-ups and I figured, to help me keep all my read books in one place (especially when they fit a certain theme) I’d continue doing this in my new wrap-up style too. This way, if you guys missed a review, you’ll be able to find them here too (click the cover to get to the review).

The first book we’re going to talk about is one of my most anticipated releases of 2019: King Of Scars.

I’ve been looking forward to hearing more about Nikolai’s story post Ruin & Rising but unfortunately this book wasn’t quite that for the majority of it. There was too much setting up and reminiscing going on for a good 50% – I wish Leigh would’ve cut that and gotten to the better parts sooner. I feel like if you’re reading this book you know what happened. At least in the original trilogy.

Nikolai is still his banter filled self, Zoya is a perfect counterpart to all of that because she takes no shit whatsoever and my god, does she go on a ride in this book. Loved it. Loved her even more than I did by the end of Ruin & Rising. Zoya has honestly come so far and with some of the things that have been said and done? Book two is gonna be interesting!

While we’re still on the topic of Nikolai (somewhat), this book genuinely didn’t have enough Nikolai in it. He’s the reason I was super excited about this book – it’s his duology. I adore both women that get a POV here but I wanted to learn more about Nikolai and what exactly he is going through and how Ruin & Rising affect him after the fact.

Instead, we get this book and whatever the ending was (which, I’m not happy with. We deserved better than that. Nikolai (among other people) deserved better). I want to talk about it more but those would be spoilers and we’re not doing that here.

Something I didn’t enjoy as much as I had hoped I would, were Nina’s chapter. Back when Leigh announced that she would get a POV in King Of Scars I was so excited to see her interact with Nikolai and Zoya but none of that actually happens as Nina is off with some minor characters from the original trilogy for the entire book.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ll still read the sequel (I’m too attached to these characters individually) but I just had much higher hopes for this first book going into it, so I’m disappointed. I haven’t even given this book a rating yet and it’s been at least a week or so since I finished it.

The next book we’re going to talk about is Kiersten White’s Slayer. I haven’t actually consumed anything Buffy related in probably a decade (I watched the show when I aired here in Germany ages ago, think the early 2000s) which made me a bit unsure if I would love this book as much as I wanted to.

And while I didn’t really have any problems with references or mentions (whenever I wanted to learn more, I just used Google), I ended up not loving/liking this book as much as I wanted. I felt like Nina was too trusting as a main character and at times so oblivious? Like, you can’t be that naive? You could tell early on that things were fishy.

Overall, this was an okay book for me. I ended up giving it three stars and I’ll probably read the next book simply because it’s set in a universe I enjoy and it’s written by Kiersten White.

Up next, we’re talking about Two Can Keep A Secret by Karen M. McManus which I got sent by the publisher and was super curious to read as I hadn’t read a YA mystery/thriller up until that point!

To be honest, I was worried about whether or not I’d enjoy this new genre but I’m glad I read this book because it was really good. The ‘I read this in a day/sitting’ kind of good. Once I got into the story, I just couldn’t put this book down – I needed to know what happened who the killer was.

I really loved Ellery’s love for crime shows and could totally relate to it – I’m known to binge a number of Criminal Minds episodes at a time because I just get so hooked and need to watch multiple episodes. xD

Actually, Two Can Keep A Secret is basically made for crime shows with the plot and how the story goes.

I mean, I felt like I was in the middle of an episode the entire time, trying to figure out who the killer was with each new clue we got. One thing that kind of bothered me/confused me was all the siblings that kept being brought up – I couldn’t keep them straight at times. But that’s a minor detail overall and probably a me thing more than anything.

The only other thing I’d even mention as a negative with this book, is the fact that the reveal felt soap-opera-like which didn’t fit with the rest of the book, in my opinion? And it’s not even the who it’s the way it was done.

Other than that, I really enjoyed this book and it definitely has made me curious about the author’s previous book One Of Us Is Lying!

And if you guys want to pick up Two Can Keep A Secret, make sure you head out to your local bookstores or libraries to get yourself a copy as this book is out already!

The last book we’re going to talk about for this post is Angie Thomas’ newest release On The Come Up!

I’ve basically been looking forward to this book ever since it was announced and we’re finally able to pick it up, read and love it.

The Hate U Give was one of my favorite books of 2017 and I can definitely see On The Come Up being on that list for 2019 too. It was just as good as THUG though lighter in topic (I still remember how I felt while reading THUG).

Bri was a fantastic character to follow and I adored her relationship with her aunt but also with her mom and brother. It was a different family dynamic compared to THUG but just as interesting to read. Bri’s friendship with Malik and Sonny was super fun too since there was so much history between them which made them super comfortable with each other when we meet them.

I really liked the references we got to The Hate U Give and what happened in that book, as Bri and Starr both live in the same neighborhood and how those events inspire Bri in her rapping!

Speaking of references, there are so many of them in this book and one that was kind of unexpected but totally should’ve been expected seeing how close Angie and Becky Albertalli are. But I think my favorite was that to a certain election in relation to something that happens in the story. Loved it. Laughed out loud, loved it.

I’m a big fan of Angie’s writing style and voice and hope she writes a ton more books in the future for all of us to enjoy.

Originally, this post was going to feature another book (A Curse So Dark And Lonely) but I’m still reading it and this post is already getting way too long. so we’ll talk about that book in a separate post once I finish it!

Have you guys read any of the books I talked about above? If so, what did you think of them? And remember, these are all new releases still, so no spoilers!

What were you guys’ favorite book(s) you’ve read so far this year? Did you read anything you ended up not loving as much as you had hoped? Let me know in the comments down below! πŸ™‚

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11 thoughts on “Recently Read #2: Winter 2019 Releases

  1. I’ve only read King of Scars and you know how I feel about it so I won’t go into any more detail. I’m so happy you enjoyed On The Come Up. I recommended it to my library and they ordered it so I’m waiting for it to come in. I can’t wait to read it. I love this new wrap up style. I have a similar post in my drafts because I don’t want to write long reviews for every book.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m still kind of undecided on how I feel about King Of Scars. xD I’m waiting for my friends to finish it so we can discuss but they’re only halfway through and I just… I’m to impatient for stuff like this. xD

      I really hope your library gets the book in soon so you can read it too! πŸ˜€

      Honestly, originally I had written like almost 600 words for just KOS alone so I was gonna do a separate review but then just cut stuff down to fit it into this post. But yeah, I’m not the biggest review writer so this wrap up style helps, especially with bigger reading months!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m glad you enjoyed King of Scars but sorry it wasn’t quite what you’d hoped it would be. I still need to get started on it. It’s high on my list but I’m working my way through the rest of the Grishaverse books before I let myself start it. πŸ™‚
    Also I really need I check out On the Come Up. I didn’t realise it had been released but it’s a top priority for me given how much I loved THUG! πŸ™‚
    Great post, and happy reading. πŸ™‚ ❀️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ahhhhh I really want to read all four of these! Especially King of Scars (I’m still waiting on that dang preorder 😭), but I also reeeeeaallly want to read On The Come Up!

    Also I (re)started One Day At A Time today, and ended up binging like five episodes in one sitting and I’m LOVING IT SO MUCH!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m so happy you liked On The Come Up! I am a bit nervous to read it, but I’m also very, very impatient because so far I’ve only heard fantastic reviews about it. So happy you enjoyed it! πŸ™‚
    Happy reading! ❀ ❀

    Liked by 1 person

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