My Week in Books – 6th to 13th November

Why these dates?

Yeah, I understand that the 6th to the 13th isn’t a normal week, but if read my related post Weekly Wrap Up – What I DNFed from NetGalley you’ll know that I messed up the dates on my last weekly wrap up, and I’m trying to fix the dates here!

Yes, I have also changed the name from Weekly Wrap Up to My Week in Book!

I’m also changing things up this week by doing it most to least favourite since my reads this week don’t have the same publisher appearing multiple times!

Full disclaimer, I do also change my star rating a lot for book especially when I’m comparing them to one another!

I did good with NetGalley reads this month, but its now 133 books to 80% and 22 books to 60% because I don’t know why I keep requesting books and I don’t know why I keep getting approved!

5 Stars

Lore Olympus: Volume Three by Rachel Smythe

Yeah, I’m a little in love with Rachel Smythe and this series! I’m already planning on getting the fourth volume when it comes out. I’ve read each volume in one sitting. I completely get that you can read these on the app and stuff but I love collecting them!

Blurb for Lore Olympus: Volume Three – October 11, 2022 by  Rachel Smythe 

“It is natural for a King to be curious about his future Queen. . . .”

All of Olympus—and the Underworld—are talking about the God of the Dead and the sprightly daughter of Demeter. But despite the rumors of their romance, Hades and Persephone have plenty to navigate on their own.

Since coming to Olympus, Persephone has struggled to be the perfect maiden goddess. Her attraction to Hades has only complicated the intense burden of the gods’ expectations. And after Apollo’s assault, Persephone fears she can no longer bury the intense feelings of hurt and love that she’s worked so hard to hide. 
As Persephone contemplates her future, Hades struggles with his past, falling back into toxic habits in Minthe’s easy embrace. With all the mounting pressure and expectations—of their family, friends, and enemies—both Hades and Persephone tell themselves to deny their deepest desires, but the pull between them is too tempting, too magnetic. It’s fate. 
This edition of Smythe’s original Eisner-winning webcomic Lore Olympus brings Greek mythology into the modern age in a sharply perceptive and romantic graphic novel. 

Four Stars

The Lies of the Ajungo by Moses Ones Utomi

I really loved this debut novella (courtesy of NetGalley) which forms the prequel to The Forever Desert series. This story is very well written and I’m now a fan! I don’t know when the series will come out, but the author is publishing Daughters of Oduma next which does sound intriguing! You can also read my full review here!

Blurb for The Lies of the Ajungo by Moses Ones Utomi

They say there is no water in the City of Lies. They say there are no heroes in the City of Lies. They say there are no friends beyond the City of Lies. But would you believe what they say in the City of Lies?

In the City of Lies, they cut out your tongue when you turn thirteen, to appease the terrifying Ajungo Empire and make sure it continues sending water. Tutu will be thirteen in three days, but his parched mother won’t last that long. So Tutu goes to his oba and makes a deal: she provides water for his mother, and in exchange he will travel out into the desert and bring back water for the city. Thus begins Tutu’s quest for the salvation of his mother, his city, and himself.

The Lies of the Ajungo opens the curtains on a tremendous world, and begins the epic fable of the Forever Desert. With every word, Moses Ose Utomi weaves magic.

Three Stars

A Dowry of Blood by S. T. Gibson – 3.5 stars

While overall I loved the book and will be reading more by the author, I felt like the author was making it too pretty all the time. Like the book is very quotable but in a way that felt contrived. Very I can write modern poetry. Anyway, maybe I’m up to my ears in a certain style of writing and done with it, but I also don’t think this book is less than 3.5 stars!

That being said, will I read another book by the author; 100%!

Blurb for A Dowry of Blood by S. T. Gibson

This is my last love letter to you, though some would call it a confession. . .

Saved from the brink of death by a mysterious stranger, Constanta is transformed from a medieval peasant into a bride fit for an undying king. But when Dracula draws a cunning aristocrat and a starving artist into his web of passion and deceit, Constanta realizes that her beloved is capable of terrible things. 

Finding comfort in the arms of her rival consorts, she begins to unravel their husband’s dark secrets. With the lives of everyone she loves on the line, Constanta will have to choose between her own freedom and her love for her husband. But bonds forged by blood can only be broken by death.

Never Catch Me by Darius Simpson – 3 stars

This NetGalley read was published by Button Poetry. Honestly, there were some poems that stood out more than the others. I genuinely didn’t realise you could be pro-Palestine and still get published in the US.

Blurb for Never Catch Me by Darius Simpson

Darius Simpson’s debut collection Never Catch Me centers on Black boyhood in the midwest and familial disintegration over time. Simpson pulls back the curtain, exposing the violence enacted against and upon, Black bodies, and yet, still, each poem is saturated in revolution and hope. Never Catch Me is the anthem necessary to organize a community that is committed to a better right now–one that can only be achieved with an intensity and action that goes far beyond the page.

How to Maintain Eye Contact by Robert Wood Lynn – 3 stars

This is another NetGalley read! There were 3 poems I really loved and the others just kinda blurred into one! But I do love that cover!

Blurb for How to Maintain Eye Contact by Robert Wood Lynn

Set in three sections, Robert Wood Lynn explores interior uncertainty, interpersonal uncertainty and uncertainty at a larger scale. These narrative poems, influenced by storytelling traditions, find themselves at the nexus of the intimate and the humorous, as well as the absurd and the tragic. These poems examine isolation and grief in their many forms—through heartbreak or the death of loved ones, or show us the world looking back at itself after it ends.

Ice Hours by Marion Starling Boyer – 3 Stars

While as a whole I don’t think I’m fond of this book, there were some really powerful moments that I’ll come back to. It’s definitely a book I will read again in the future before deciding how I’ll feel. The opening poem, ‘Perhaps I was Eden’ is one of my favourites and I loved the Gladys Mackintosh poems. This was also a NetGalley read!

This book doesn’t have a cover on Amazon just yet…
Blurb for Ice Hours by Marion Starling Boyer

Ice Hours is a suite of poems set in majestic and severe Antarctica, chronicling the nearly forgotten story of the Ross Sea party. Weaving historical and scientific research into lilting verse, Marion Starling Boyer follows the adventurers who sailed on the Aurora at the beginning of World War I to support Sir Ernest Shackleton’s 1914–1917 Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition. These poems reveal the characters of the explorers and the conflicts they faced during the two years they labored to lay a chain of supply depots across the ice, unaware that Shackleton would never come because his ship, the Endurance, sank on the opposite side of the continent. The Ross Sea men battled frozen wastelands, scurvy, snow-blindness, starvation, hypothermia, and frostbite while their ship, the Aurora, was ice-trapped, marooning them without vital equipment, clothing, fuel, and food. Through lyric and formal poetic forms, Ice Hours brings to life the close of a heroic period interwoven with the brooding voice of the Antarctic continent, evoking themes of what occurs when humanity engages with the sublime.

Two Stars

Cruel Wolves and Devious Deceptions by Danielle Annett – 2.5 stars

This short, fun smutty read has, or will probably make, rounds on BookTok. I didn’t understand the age gap and the toxic shit he said to her. It wasn’t really enemies to lovers and it the supernatural academy didn’t really feature much.

You can read my full review here!

Blurb for Cruel Wolves and Devious Deceptions by Danielle Annett

Desmond Pierce is a wolf above Alpha’s, and officially off limits.

If coming from different clans wasn’t reason enough for Meiying to stay away from him, his connection to her brother is but ignoring the wolf is impossible when every time they’re in the same room, he needles his way under her skin, demanding her attention.

She hates him. And he hates her.

But as tensions rise between the two, so does their chemistry, and eventually Meiying will have to decide if hate is all she feels for the infuriating wolf, or if there is something more.

Her Worthy Rake by Charlotte Anne – 2 stars

I love Regency Romance, but this one bored me. Like properly bored me and went on and on. I don’t know why I didn’t DNF it.

Blurb for

Is falling for this rake a mistake?

Owen Tattershall might not have a title or immeasurable wealth like other gentlemen of his ilk, but he does have rather excellent taste in the waistcoat department-and taste counts for a lot amongst the ton. It also doesn’t hurt that his adopted mother is the dowager Marchioness of Faye and his kind-of-cousin is the Duke of Woodhal. Unfortunately, prestige didn’t save his family from the ravages of war, and now what’s left is held together by nothing more than heartbreak, hope and bravado. To keep his memories of the war at bay, Owen immerses himself in his work … until the day Sophy Calder comes colliding into his life.

Sophy has been fending for herself ever since her twin brother was press ganged to fight against Napoleon’s forces. But the war ended almost two years ago, and still he hasn’t returned. Knowing something dreadful has happened, Sophy is determined to find her missing brother, even if it means infiltrating the world that snatched him from her. But when she encounters Owen, she quickly finds her growing attraction for the only man who’s taken her seriously threatening her long-mastered control.

An addictive romp from start to finish, this delightful Regency romance is set in the world of The Unworthy Duke, but is a standalone read.

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