Book Reviews, Fantasy, Memoir, Non-Fiction

Mini Book Reviews: November 2019 – Part 2


*Books included in this batch of mini book reviews: The Queen of Sorrow (Queens of Renthia #3) by Sarah Beth Durst, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson, Wintersmith (Tiffany Aching #3) by Terry Pratchett, & I’d Rather Be Reading: The Delights and Dilemias of the Reading Life by Anne Bogel


» The Queen of Sorrow (Queens of Renthia #3) by Sarah Beth Durst



5-Star Rating System

The Queens of Renthia series is a very underrated & underhyped series.  I wish more people would give these books a go…
WhatILiked» Durst created such a whimsical world in the Queens of Renthia series.  I loved the lush descriptions.

»  The magic system included in this series was very unique: elemental spirits that can be controlled by a select few humans with an affinity.

»  I loved the complexity of certain characters & the relationships between the characters, Daleina & Merecot (and their relationship) in particular.

» I felt satisfied with how everything panned out in this conclusion.WhatIDidntLike»  One of my biggest issues with this series was the inclusion of Naelin’s character & her story.  While we did get more of Daleina in this book as opposed to the second book, I wish that Durst would have kept this series limited to Daleina’s story.   I was very sad to see her pushed aside for most of the second book and a good chunk of this one.  I think it would have worked better to have done a spin-off series for Naelin.OverallThe Queen of Sorrow is the conclusion to a solid fantasy series.  Ranking this series is fairly easy in my mind: the first book is the best, followed by the third, then the second book slots in as the weakest.

› Recommended to ⇒ fantasy fans that enjoy whimsical worlds & unique magic systems

› If you liked this book, try ⇒ The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

» Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson



5-Star Rating System

*4.5 Stars*

After reading Furiously Happy back in 2016 and loving it, I’ve been looking forward to reading this book.  I’m happy to say that it did not disappoint.

WhatILiked» Jenny Lawson’s humor is laugh out loud funny.  Like, laugh until you cry funny.  I must add a disclaimer that if you are easily offended, this humor is not going to be for you.

» I have such a soft spot for eccentric people, and Jenny is one odd duck.  If you are not a fan of the bizarre, this might not be the book for you.

» Jenny doesn’t apologize for who she is.  I respect her so much for that.

» I know many readers do not like the flow of Jenny’s books, or rather the lack there of, but I think of Jenny’s books as humorous short stories versus a cohesive & linear story line.OverallLet’s Pretend This Never Happened will shock you, gross you out, AND keep you laughing for hours.  Jenny Lawson’s humor is not going to be for everyone.  I encourage you to check out her blog, The Bloggess, to gauge if her humor is for you.

› Recommended to ⇒ those with a crude sense of humor 🙂

› Trigger/content warnings ⇒ mental illness; anxiety; morbid humor; taxidermy

› If you liked this book, try ⇒ Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson

» Wintersmith (Tiffany Aching #3) by Terry Pratchett



5-Star Rating System

*4.5 Stars*WhatILiked»  I am coming to adore Pratchett’s wit & humor.  I can’t help but chuckle to myself while reading these books.

» It’s no secret that I am a sucker for eccentric characters.  Pratchett assembles such a ragtag cast of characters in this series, but they somehow all compliment one another.  I can’t help but love all of them, even the prickly ones.

» Tiffany Aching is a very untypical main character, yet such a wonderful leaning lady.  I love that she is responsible, level headed, hard working, clever, and very sensible.  Did I mention that she’s sassy too?  Bravo for Pratchett creating a strong female lead that draws strength from her mind and determination

» The audiobook narration for this series is on point!  Honestly, I doubt I would enjoy this series as much as I have if I would have read them in print form.  I can only imagine trying to decipher the Wee Free Men’s thick accents otherwise.WhatIDidntLike» I find that I often have a hard time keeping up with Pratchett as he tends to go off on random tangents in his narrations.  While the tangents are always amusing, it can make it difficult to follow.OverallI have really enjoyed my introduction to Pratchett’s Discworld series.  After I complete the Tiffany Aching books, I will definitely dive into another one of these Discworld series.

› Recommended to ⇒ fans of Neil Gaiman; fans of witty stories; fans of quirky characters

» I’d Rather Be Reading: The Delights and Dilemmas of the Reading Life by Anne Bogel



5-Star Rating System

WhatILiked» I would probably say that this books is probably the most relatable of all the “reading memoir” style books I’ve read.   I really appreciated how relaxed Anne’s writing style was.  Anne comes across as very down to earth & real.  Listening to this book felt like I was having a chat with a friend.

» This is probably the first “reading memoir” style book I’ve read where the author’s faith/religion isn’t the center of the book.  While I do not fault these other author’s for infusing their faith in their works as an important aspect of their lives, I don’t particularly enjoy feeling as if I am being preached to.WhatIDidntLike» Despite this being the most relatable “reading memoirs,” I felt like Anne didn’t give us enough unique content.  It felt very similar to the other books I’ve read within this genre.  I wanted Anne to give us some type of new spin.  This isn’t to say that what Anne has isn’t good, just that it is one among many.OverallAnne has written a lovely book on what it means to live the bookish life.  If you love books, or even if you are only an occasional reader, I recommend you pick this one up.  There is something for every type of reader to relate to in this small book.

› Recommended to ⇒ book lovers

› If you liked this book, try ⇒ Book Girl by Sarah Clarkson



Have you read any of these books?  If so, what did you think?

Comment below & let me know 🙂

What I'm Reading




3 thoughts on “Mini Book Reviews: November 2019 – Part 2”

  1. HI HI HI. I’m baaaaaaaack! I’ve missed you and your blog and your reviews. These mini reviews have gotten so much sharper over the last few months. You’ve definitely found your voice in these. Keep up the great work!

    All four books are four-stars?! I’m impressed. You have good taste. I can imagine Pratchett is difficult to listen to with all his tangents… I’ve only read The Witch’s Vaccum Cleaner (children’s short story collection) and Good Omens from Pratchett’s wide library. I’ve considered entering Discworld with his Wee Free Men series. Is this one a good entry point for Discworld?

    What other “reading memoirs” have you read? Honestly, I cannot think of a single book in this genre… other than Bogle’s book, obviously!


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