May 2017 Reading Recap

2017 Reading Goals | January Recap | March Recap | April Recap

How can I review 30 books in 30 days? Because I have read and not reviewed a mountain of books this year. In May of last year, coming off my first year of grad school and a reading drought, I devoured 30 books. Which, to be fair, is a very respectable number. But this year I really wanted the satisfaction of hitting one book for every day of the month of May. Did I do it? First, let’s review my goals… Continue reading

1/30 Book Review: And I Darken


(Did you miss the 30/30 announcement?)

And I Darken

Kiersten White

YA Historical Fiction(ish)

Apparently this is a gender-bent Vlad the Impaler retelling. I just grabbed the ebook from my library on a whim and had no idea until after I finished. Although I did wonder about the Dracul family name!

Not having a clue what was going on did not hinder my enjoyment of this tale one bit.

Plot Stuff

Lada is a fierce girl burdened with a sensitive younger brother (Radu) and a father who doesn’t notice her. Follow Lada and Radu through the complex politics of the Ottoman Empire and (equally complex) growing up.

(As I’ve noted before, I don’t like much detail in synopses.)

What I Loved

Complex Characterization

Lada and Radu, in particular, are written with exquisite care. Lada is a fierce and wonderful girl/woman, but White doesn’t neglect softer feelings as well. Lada does care about people in her own way. I’m particularly fond of her response to Radu–she flip flops between despising him and being fiercely protective, just the way most older siblings do. Authors seldom balance their “strong female characters” in a way that I can tolerate, much less admire, so I really, really appreciated Lada. Continue reading