August Reading

1. Once Broken Faith by Seanan McGuire ★★★★★ (OWN)

I have not been ready for this series to end. Which is basically the same thing I said when I first wrote about this series. There is still one book left to read technically but it hasn't been released in a cover to match the rest and so I'll wait. This book has a great ending and I like the mini story at the end. Which actually made me realize there are a lot of mini stories to go with this series and that instead of being sad, I've finished I should just pick those up. So here's hoping I find them. 

2. Breath: the essence of yoga by Sandra Sabatini ★★★★ (OWN)

I am not sure what I expected from this book. Something that would teach me how to breath properly as that is my biggest struggle. And this book sorta does that. It's written like poetry short and sweet. There were contradicting lines that bothered me but overall I found that the movement expressed in the few lines were something that could be followed I just had to relax into it. I wonder how much more I would have enjoyed this if I had listened to it in audiobook format with the sound of waves crashing in the background. Something I am tempted to see if I can find. The four unique breathing techniques mentioned in the book are very interesting. There is one I don't think I'll ever be able to do (mumbling breath) but I think with time and dedicated the other three are possible. I have many pages marked off and I think I will be going back through and reflecting on those when I need to remember to breath. 

I did not read this as intended, one page per day. I found I kept jumping back and catching up to were I was before I could continue so I could remember the sequences. In the end I found it much easier to do a chapter at a time and focus on the whole idea vs individual pages. 

practice is not always pleasant

there are times when you discover things
and things come undone
and there is no pain
and everything feels wonderful

and there are times when there is resistance
and when there is little understanding
of what is happening

this is natural
— Breath by Sandra Sabatini, pg 44

3. Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova ★★★★ (Library)

I loved this story and it was awesome. It would have been rated 5 stars if it wasn't for the last chapter. The unnecessarily added cliffhanger. The story is unique. There's a love story that's already there when the story starts and even that's unique. I wasn't ready for it to end and that would have made me pick up book two. The cliffhanger makes me not want to pick up the next book, because it was so unnecessary. There was enough intrigue for you to want more but not enough for that chapter. So if you read it, skip that chapter until you get your hands on book two. 

4. The Will of the Empress by Tamora Pierce ★★★★★ (Library)

A story were not just one person is the hero is always a pleasure. A story were girls can fall in love and some customs are seen as barbaric is refreshing. This is a thick and heavy book but it was so worth the read. I was surprised when I went to look up the series and discover that this is book 9. It read so well on it's own and ended without the cliffhangers of most series. For that I ordered the rest of the series though the library and can't wait to dive into the individual stories of our four heroines (though to be fair only three are female). 

5. Bruja Born by  Zoraida Córdova ★★★★ (Library)

I kinda wish I had read this one first. Though parts of the story won't have made sense I feel like it would have been better to go through the characters in age order vs the order done. On the other hand it worked well. I wanted to love this one but I found too many things frustrating, the parents being present but not actually paying attention for one. The accident never being explained. Ending proud of scars. It was good just missing the intrigue that the first book had. 

6. Every Heart A Dooryway by Seanan McGuire ★★★★★ (Library)

Sometimes you read a series of books that you love so much, that you become afraid to read anything else by the author because you don't want the bubble of that first world to burst. That has been the case with Seanan McGuire. Her October Daye series is like my dirty little secret for books. It's a series I love and need more of but can't define. So branching out to her other novels was a little worrisome. While this book was not the amazement of October Daye it was still pretty fantastic. Short, sweet in a weird way, and a unique storyline . Nancy, of course, should be ones favorite character and she is but Jack is a high contender for that role as well. 

7. Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire ★★★★★ (Library)

This book goes with book #6, as the second book in the Wayward Children series. This book picks up before book one but has characters from book one. Two characters that I knew I wanted more of and this gave me exactly what I wanted. Hopefully that means the third book will do the same. Either way I enjoyed this one more than the first.

8. Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire ★★★ (Library)

This is the last available book of the Wayward Children Series. There's two more scheduled to be published in 2019 and 2020. I didn't not enjoy this one as much. Though it did follow another character I wanted more of. The character aspects were fantastic. There were just some things about the wording that I didn't enjoy as much. Definitely looking forward to reading more of this series one day. It's weird reading three books in one night. It's been a long time since I've done that. There's are small simple reads, but worth it. 

This, you see, is the true danger of children: they are ambushes, each and every one of them. A person may look at someone else’s child and see only the surface, the shiny shoes or the perfect curls. They do not see the tears and the tantrums, the late nights ,the sleepless hours, the worry. They do not even see the love, not really. It can be easy, when looking at children from the outside, to believe that they are things, dolls designed and programmed by their parents to behave in one manner, following a set of rules. It can be easy, when standing on the lofty shoes of adulthood, not to remember that every adult was once, a child, with ideas and ambitions of their own.
It can be easy, in the end to forget that children are people, and that people will do what people will do, the consequences be damned.
— Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire, Pg 13

9. this modern love by Will Darbyshire ★★★ (Library)

This style of book is not my favorite to read. However it was put together well. I have never followed Will Darbyshire's YouTube path and so know not much about him. It's an interesting book and I like the breakdown of chapters - beginning, middle, end, gallery. My favorites can be found on pages 75, 107, and 173.

10. The Inner Tradition of Yoga by Michael Stone ★★★★ (OWN)

Chapters 6 - Practicing the Yamas, 16 - Letting Go: Āsana and Meditation, 19 - Śūnyatā: boundless and Empty I think are my favorite chapters. But it's hard to fully know because alot of the things written in this book were first time concepts that I hadn't thought on and I definitely will need to reread. I do know that the next yoga philosophy book I read needs to be The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali by Sri Swami Satchidananda as I definitely need to a deeper understanding of those and I think that would help me better work through this book. I enjoy my read of this but I definitely won't recommended it to everyone. 

11. of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst ★★★★ (OWN)

I loved and hated this book. I most definitely want to read the next book in the series though so I guess I'll go with love. Aspects of the story were drawn out and boring and yet there are other parts that were fascinating. Breaking this book into three parts. Part one the beginning was great, I enjoyed it a lot. Part two the middle was boring and I began to wonder why I was reading. Part three the end was wonderful and it ended well. It also didn't end in a cliffhanger but it definitely ended with the note of more to come.

Tamora Pierce - Emelan Series (which is the combination of Circle of Magic series and The Circle Opens Series) (Library)

At the beginning of the month I read The Will of the Empress (see book four) and really enjoyed it. Upon looking it up I realized that it was book 11 in a series and that I needed to immediately order the rest of the series from the library. So that's what I did. I would have loved to have reviewed them separately but once I got started it was just a matter of picking up the next book after finishing and continuing on without pause. In totally I read the entire series besides Will of the Empress in 72 hours. I love series that are so easy to blitz and are worth every second spent in their world. I already own a few series like that and I hope to one day add these to my collection.

12. Sandry's Book ★★★★
13. Tris's Book ★★★★
14. Daja's Book ★★★★★
15. Briar's Book ★★★★
16. Magic Stepsn ★★★★
17. Street Magic ★★★★★
18. Cold Fire ★★★★
19. Shatter Glass ★★★★★

Some general thoughts on the books: You got the whole story without it feeling tossed in as a side piece. Each book is laid out well filling in holes from the first. The only thing that frustrated me was a few descriptions of characters. In Sandry's book she describes people of color using food, like coffee and coco. Personally I don't think it's right to describe anyone like a food group and I found that in most of the following books she described people of color much better and without the food references, until Cold Fire. It's like she had one editor for Sandry's Book and Cold Fire and a different editor for the rest. 

I love the view of magic in the stories and how Niko did not want the children to have pre-conceived notions before practicing that would limit the children's overall potential. I like that there was consequences for things, chorus, and rules. The children broke the rules but the adults were there to enforce and correct, feels like this is a rare thing in books. It wasn't perfect but adults aren't perfect so it felt natural. As I mentioned earlier I really enjoyed this series and hope to one day add them to my collection.

Emelan Series

Darren Shan - The Demonata (Library)

I read this series back in 2012. It's definitely a series that has stuck with me. Mostly because it's genre is horror and that is not something I read. I've been wanting to re-read the series to see how my memory lived up and so far it's not as horror filled as I remember. Back then it was one, now 6 years later I've seen and read worse. Heck I think the first scene in Jay Kristoff's Nevernight was worse. However I am enjoying rereading it. 

20. Lord Loss (old review) ★★★★
21. Demon Thief (old review) ★★★
22. Slawter (old review) ★★
23. Bec (old review)  ★★★
24. Blood Beast (old review) ★★★

My rating for the series has gone down at least one star per book. Enjoyment is one thing but overall story, I feel like there is better though that I think has to do with the teen rating. Unfortunately the library doesn't have book 6 Demon Apocalypse and so I am stuck unable to finish this series. Which is a tad frustrating as Blood Beast ends in the middle of a battle. I don't think I'm going to stress about finding book 6, instead I think I'll find some adult horror fantasy and see how I like those.  

Books Not Finished

1. Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong - and the New Research That's Rewriting the Story by Angela Saini - I really wanted to read this but I struggled through the Introduction and gave up in the first chapter. It's a fascinating subject, written well but my head got in the way. I think the biggest issue is I need to tackle one serious book at a time and I tried to read this while reading two other serious books on a different subject making it hard to go back and forth. I do hope to one day come back to this. 

2. Everfair by Nisi Shawl - this is my second try at reading this book though my first time writing about it. It's one I want to read and I love the first chapter but immediately lose interest after that. Which is sad because it has potential. I won't be trying again sadly. 

Notes

So I started doing monthly wrap ups because I wasn't reading very much. But now I am reading so much that these are ridiculously long. So I think I'm going to try weekly, on Wednesdays, and see how it goes. It'll be a challenge for sure!