My year started tumultuous, but thankfully things have settled down. I sometimes forget it, but this month I once again remembered how comforting books are. As always here are my spoiler-free reviews of the books I read.
Books I read
Love in Lowercase by Francesc Miralles – 3 stars
In four words: humoristic, philosophical, quotable, unsatisfying
What I liked: I enjoyed the first part of the book. Samuel starts out as a lonely literature professor with no friends. The appearance of a cat changes everything for him. I loved to read about the cat! It was a pity that he only plays a minor role. I like how the story is both humoristic and philosophical.
What I disliked: The book suffers from some info dumps. But my biggest problem was the last part of the book. Some old characters just disappear, new characters appear, things get weird and then the story suddenly ends. The ending was really unsatisfying! It left me with so many questions.
I read the Dutch edition of this story, it’s originally published as two separated books in Spanish: Wabi-sabi & Amor en minúscula
Leaving Ireland (Gracelin O’Malley, #2) by Ann Moore – 4 stars
In four words: gripping, heart-wrenching historical fiction
What I liked: This book is just as good as the first part! Grace is still a wonderful protagonist. I also love the new side characters, especially Captain Reinders and Liam.
What I disliked: Some parts of the story, in particular when characters talk about Irish politics, were a bit too wordy.
Trigger warnings for death of loved ones, child death, murder and rape
Under Fortunate Stars by Ren Hutchings – 3 stars
In four words: interesting, time travel, rogues
What I liked: Two space ships get in a strange rift. When the crews meet each other, they appear to come from different moments in time. The characters have to work together to save a future that already happened. There are four points of view: from a smuggler, a mathematical genius, a history nerd and a facilities coordinator. I enjoyed reading their backstories, because I started to appreciate the characters a lot more when I truly got to know them.
What I disliked: Initially I didn’t really care about the characters. I kept mixing them up. It would have helped if the flashbacks were earlier in the book. I feel reluctant about the time travel aspect. It worked in the story, but it doesn’t make sense when I actually try to comprehend it.
Trigger warning for loss of loved ones
Podcasts I liked
- Rogues – with Ren Hutchings at Breaking the Glass Slipper is an interview with the writer of Under Fortunate Stars. They discuss what makes a character a rogue and what the difference is between a good rogue and a bad one.
- While reading Under Fortunate Stars I enjoyed listening to POWER: Time After Time on Flash Forward. It’s a fascinating episode about an important theme of the book: time travel. Rose Eveleth and a couple of guests talk about how travelling through time may actually be possible for real.