January was STRESSFUL for me. So over Christmas I got the flu (like literally on Christmas Eve) so because of that I missed a week of work and a week of pay. This caused me to panic on how on earth I was going to pay for school and a very ill timed vacation. All of this was going on while I thought that I would be loosing my job for a few months because we are closing the location we have now to open a new location. So I was very stressed which lead to very little reading. However, I managed to pay for school, go on vacation (where I got all my reading done) and kept my job! So it all worked out. Here’s to February being much better! (where have we heard that before?)
The first book on the chopping block was The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand. Fun Fact about this book is that when I went to go and read it I realized it was signed by the author (I got the book from thrift books) so I put it on my Instagram stories and tagged Cynthia Hand and Thriftbooks and Cynthia Hand shared it to her story and Thriftbooks reacted to it and it was just about the coolest thing that has ever happened to me! The book itself was three stars for me. I like it enough and the concept is really cool, but I felt like Holly Chase, the protagonist, didn’t grow and had a lot of character growth at the same time. She wasn’t unlikable but I wouldn’t say she was likable either. I just felt kinda blah about it. I liked her romance with the romantic interest, Ethan, who was also the Scrooge they were trying to help and I think that helped her grow a lot. It just wasn’t everything I thought it was going to be, but it also wasn’t a bad read. I enjoyed the aspect that there was a secret organization that picks a “Scrooge” every year and gives them the Christmas Carol treatment. I just wish some more had been uncovered but there are just things that we never get answers for.
Evolution, Me & Other Freaks of Nature is a reread for me and it is honestly one of my favorite books. It deals with petty high school drama, boys, religion and science in a way that isn’t preachy or making you lean one way or another. Mena is a freshman in high school ans wants nothing more then to be completely invisible, after all half of her ex-church and possibly her parents are being sued because of her. I love Mena. She is smart and she has a big heart (one of the reasons why everybody is being sued). She just wanted to do the right thing and doing it had major unintended consequences but because of it she was able to see the world from a different point of view. The main event in the story is that Mena’s ex-church and therefor her ex- friends are protesting the teaching of evolution in her biology class, but because she has been ostracized she doesn’t participate and she actually realizes that she A) likes biology B) gets the chance to make friends with her lab partner Casey and subsequently his family and C) realizes that science and religion get to coexist. I would like to think that Mena and Casey are still together and Casey is this world famous author and scientist like his dad and Mena is a theological scholar with a minor in biology and she sometimes helps Casey out and they have tons of black lab puppies. The one thing I dislike is how Mena’s parents treat her. They ice her out after “the incident” and they don’t even stand up for their own daughter and punish her for what she did. If my theoretical child did what she did I would fight hell hounds for them and reward them for doing the right but hard thing. Her ex-church and her ex-friends totally had it coming to them in my opinion.
Etiquette and Espionage is my second ever audio book. One of my goals this year is to listen to more audio books. So I listen to them when I shower and when I do things around the house and so far I really enjoy it. I loved the Narrator for this one she does different voices for the different characters and it is absolutely perfect. I love that is steampunk-y and has female spies and evil geniuses and werewolves and vampires. It literally has everything I ever want in a book. Sophronia is a very interesting protagonist. I usually don’t like protagonist who are so much younger then me, Sophronia is almost grown up acting. I mean she still causes shenanigans, but shes going to spy school so. I also really enjoy how 99% of the cast of characters are female and it really focuses on the friendships between them. There isn’t really any romance which is pretty refreshing actually. There are just a bunch of girls who are loyal to each other and kick some serious ass. I am completely here for it!