Hi everybody, and welcome to my November wrap up!
November was a great reading month for me as I read 10 books. There were some amazing books, some not-so-amazing books and some cherished re-reads. So pretty balanced overall!
I am now at 91 books read this year, which is almost double my reading goal of 50 books. And I know I have said that quantity doesn’t matter and that I didn’t want to pressure myself, BUT now that I’m so close to 100 books (a number I’ve never reached before), I REALLY, REALLY want to reach 100 books read in 2020. That means 9 books in December – should be doable, right?
Anyway, that’s December. For now, let’s look back at November:
Dragon Mystics & Dragon Mated by Jaymin Eve
I read the first book in this trilogy last month and though I wasn’t sold on this urban fantasy featuring dragon shifters, vampires and more, the story featured a strong friend group that kept me intrigued and had me picking up book 2 and 3. And honestly, I should have DNF’ed this as it was not my thing. I couldn’t get into the characters or the plot, and even the friendship group couldn’t save it anymore for me. But I forced myself through it and finished anyway, because apparently I still have problems DNF’ing…
Overall rating: 2,5-3 stars
Outfoxed by R.J. Blain
I read this ARC for a blog tour, but unfortunately it was another miss for me. I liked the idea of a fox-shifter/witch, a world tormented by devastating hurricanes and a romance with a bounty hunter, but the execution did not grip me. This was a whole lot of exposition with little plot and I was just confused all the time. I will not be picking up the sequel.
Rating: 2,5 stars
A Deal With The Elf King by Elise Kova
A Deal With the Elf King had me intrigued with it’s gorgeous cover and Hades/Persephone and Beauty and the Beast vibes. I sped through this story in about a day and really enjoyed it. It had everything I loved in a story, but my only gripe is that I wanted more. It felt too short with not enough time to really flesh out the story and the characters and their motivations. I have the same feeling often when I watch a movie – I enjoyed it, but it didn’t have the time to really draw me into the story.
Rating: 4 stars
A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Okay, I remember reading the first book, From Blood and Ash, in the beginning of this year and having a few little issues with it that caused me to give it a 4 star rating. So yes, still 4 stars, because despite these little issues, it was one of those books that stayed on my mind for a long time and had me craving the sequel so badly. And then I read A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire and I FELL IN LOVE and am quite OBSESSED. I kind of want to re-read the first one, because I can’t imagine those little issues anymore, to be honest. I love this story, I love the characters, I love the romance and I NEED MORE NOW.
Rating: 5 stars
First Drop of Crimson by Jeaniene Frost
Guess who’s still in her Jeaniene Frost binge? (Spoiler: it’s me!) This month I picked up two novels set in the Night Huntress world, but not featuring Cat and Bones. Instead, First Drop of Crimson is Spade and Denise’s story and I was super pumped for this, because Spade was one of my favorite side-characters from the Night Huntress novels. This story definitely lived p to my expectations, and I loved the romance between Spade and Denise. Already itching for a re-read and I hope we’ll run into them again in the upcoming Night Huntress novels.
Rating: 4,5 stars
Eternal Kiss of Darkness by Jeanine Frost
I was initially a bit hesitant about my second Jeaniene Frost novel of November, since this one featured Mencheres. I liked Mencheres in the Night Huntress novels, but the centuries-old vampire always felt so distant and formal that I couldn’t imagine him as a romantic hero. Luckily, I was wrong – in fact, I think Mencheres secured his own place in my heart’s top romantic heroes. I loved the insight into his life, feelings and thoughts, and I LOVED his romance with Kira, the human private investigator who walked into his life at the perfect time.
Rating: 4,5 stars
Well Played by Jen DeLuca
Well Met was one of my fave rom-coms read in 2019 and I was eager to dive back into the world of renaissance faires (I really want to visit one someday). I liked the character of Stacy and her story. I was pleasantly surprised (not sure why, since it’s obvious from the blurb) that it featured a bit of a pen pal romance and liked the love interest. It didn’t have all the magic from Simon and Emily’s story last year, but it was still super enjoyable and I’m already so excited for April and Mitch’s story!
Rating: 4 stars
An Ember in the Ashes / A Torch Against The Night by Sabaa Tahir (re-read)
I’ve been saying I wanted to re-read these two books in time for the release of the final book for a while, and this month I did just that! These books are some of my all-time favorite, but I hadn’t read the third book yet and with the fourth and final book coming out in just a few days, it was the perfect time for a binge-read! Even after a few years, I still adored these books and the characters of Laia, Elias and Helene. I’m a little scared for what book 3 and 4 have planned for me, but I’m eager to find out!
Rating: 5 stars
Top Ten Tuesday
Quote It Wednesday
Can’t Wait Wednesday
Update on my Commenting Issues
I think my difficulties are over? I don’t want to be too happy too early, but I haven’t had any issues in a few weeks. I think the problem was something I did to make my site https instead of http because since I switched back to http I didn’t have any issues anymore. I do want to test more and find a way to make my site https secure again, so perhaps the commenting issues will come back and in that case please let me know if you encounter any issues.
There were quite a few fun new music releases this month, but these were my favorites:
MY FAVE: Xia – Pit A Pat
Did you know that this artist is actually the reason I got into kpop? I discovered his song called Flower about 4 years ago and I thought it was a masterpiece and also just the song I needed at that moment. Pit A Pat is his first new song in 4 years and I love the catchy, happy pop feeling!
BTS – Life Goes On
Umm, BTS’s response to 2020 and COVID hit me right in the feels. And that music video? Tae driving by the stadium? The guys performing in an empty venue? Jin dropping the pizza? Genius.
Little Mix – Sweet Melody
Little Mix is one of those bands that have been consistently releasing songs I end up loving and Sweet Melody is no exception.
Mamamoo – Aya
Queens. That is all.
I didn’t watch that much, but I did get started on my Christmas binge with this adorable series:
Dash & Lily
I have to admit I have not yet read the book this Netflix series is based on, Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan, but if it’s even near as cute as this mini-series, I need to remedy that immediately. I watched this entire series on one lazy sunday and fell in love. I already want to rewatch it. Christmas dares, New York, bookstores,… this felt super magical and cute and was perfect to get into that Christmas spirit.
We started watching The Queen’s Gambit and The Crown (still on season one) I haven’t seen that many episodes yet, but both series have been amazing so far!
I also re-watched The Princess Switch in prep for the sequel, but since I started it after 9, my eyes closed for several parts during the movie… Luckily, it was a rewatch 😉
Well, November was pretty slow on the life front since Belgium went into lockdown again. All non-essential shops were closed, homeworking was preferred (I’ve been doing three days at home, two at the office each week) and we’re only allowed one contact outside of our family (living in the same house). So yeah, not much to do (but read!).
I have to admit that it’s been getting harder and harder for me to deal with everything. The upcoming holiday period will feel difficult and lonely, but I try to remember to stay positive and that everybody’s health is what matters most of all. I’m lucky to still be able to work and that everyone I love is healthy. The sooner we beat this pandemic, the better!
Things that made me happy this month:
- Setting up our Christmas decoration!
- All the books!
THINGS I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT MONTH:
- Two weeks of holiday!
- All the Christmas movies I plan to binge.
- Snuggling on the couch with hot chocolate, books and a blanket.
- Re-reading some of my favorite books.
- End-of-year lists with favorites (especially looking forward to my Spotify most listened in 2020 list)