Books,  Reading

August 2020 Reads

Hi-lo! What’s up, what’s up?! 😀

I was super determined to catch up on my reading goal, and I’m so so happy to report that I’m officially no longer behind! Cue confetti canyons!!

My bookshelves are going in on Friday! So I’ll see how many books I can get up over the weekend so I can take pictures and talk about it. ^_^

But I have a lot of books I want to talk about, so enjoy. 😀

24: The Beholder
Author: Anna Bright
Genre: YA Alt History Fantasy
Rating: 4 stars
I’m a sucker for beautiful writing. ^_^ It’s hard to explain the setting for this book, because I don’t entirely understand it, but my observations are that it’s set in an alternate version of the world where England was beaten back before it imposed it’s will on the world, so the US doesn’t exist and some other country rose up to threaten everyone. Even though this is a duology, the book did have a satisfying conclusion, and I hope to start the next book soon while I still remember everything that happened. In this, Selah, our focal character, has a stepmother who sends her on a courtship tour, hoping Selah will marry one of the sons and never return to claim her birthright. This book covers the first two of four planned stops. Very good writing and characterization. The world feels large and real, though I admittedly struggled quite a bit with the names of places and in understanding how it all fits into bigger picture of the world. Also, Selah repeatedly talked about a looming threat that I know nothing about and can’t get myself to care about. Just because the character is scared, doesn’t mean I’m scared. The author still needed to present actual evidence that this threat is as terrifying as Selah thinks it is, and the author did not do that, in my opinion.

25: Giant Days, Vol. 13
Author: John Allison,
Genre: Comedy, Contemporary
Rating: 5 stars
There’s only one more of these! The trio of friends are wrapping up their final year of university and preparing for the future. It’s been a fun journey with these books, and I’ve enjoyed them a lot.

26: Batman: The Long Halloween
Author: Jeph Loeb, Illustrator: Tim Sale
Genre: DC Comics
Rating: 4 stars
This is one of the more highly regarded Batman compilations out there. It covers some of the earlier years and Batman, Gordon, and Harvey Dent are trying to take down a crime boss while simultaneously trying to stop the Holiday killer. The story is very engaging, but I can’t say I understood everything that was going on. I couldn’t tell if Catwoman and Batman knew each other’s secret identities or not, and I’m not a hundred percent sure I understood everything that was going on with the Holiday killer. Plus, I didn’t like the artwork. It’s very boxy and gritty, and I had a hard time telling some people apart. It’s confusing when people really don’t look the same from chapter to chapter. Or if they look too much like another character. But I did like a few of the stylistic choices, like the flowy things the artist did with Batman’s cape and the crazy vines attached to Poison Ivy.


27: The Body in the Garden
Author: Katharine Schellman
Genre: Mystery, Historical, Audiobook
Rating: 5 stars
This was a lot of fun! I don’t read a lot of mysteries or historical books these days. I always enjoy them when I do. This is about a young woman who moves back to London a few years after her husband’s death. At her first party back, someone is shot in the garden, and when the local police drop the case due to lack of evidence, she takes it upon herself to find out what happened and why. The plot took some fun twists, and I loved the chemistry between the main characters and how they worked together. There’s a lot of opportunity for friendships and relationships to grow even more in future books.

28: Pillow Thoughts IV
Author: Courtney Peppernell
Genre: Poetry
Rating: 3 stars
I can’t pretend like I know what’s going through this girl’s head, but I can’t do these formless, shallow, pep talky kind of poems anymore. Most of it is just rambling to me. I barely comprehended any of this because it was so boring. It feels like I’m talking to someone who’s trying too hard to help me and they’re failing miserably because they really don’t understand what I’m going through, so they’re making a bunch of generalized platitudes in an attempt to reach me, and it’s kind of annoying.

29: Batman: Hush
Author: Jeph Loeb, Illustrated by: Jim Lee and Scott Williams
Genre: DC Comics
Rating: 4 stars
This was an exciting story, and I loved the artwork! I feel like some of the details and transitions between scenes were a little muddled in places, but this story takes place several years after The Long Halloween, so there was a lot going on. However, they did explain things, so I was never lost, just…disoriented at times. But this story is about an unknown, masked assailant who’s trying to drive Batman off the deep end. And Superman shows up for a couple of scenes, which was really cool.

30: How Roland Rolls
Author: Jim Carrey, Illustrated by: Rob Nason
Genre: Picture Book
Rating: 4 stars
I don’t understand how I’ve never realized there are two Rs in Jim Carrey. But regardless. There are a couple of awkward extended rhymes, and I feel like the blurb isn’t super accurate, but it’s fun. The description made it sound like this was about a wave afraid to crash on the shore, so I thought it would be about facing your fears or something, but that fear was only two pages. The rest of it, the wave is rolling around being a wave. It’s cute.

31: Vampire Academy
Author: Richelle Mead
Genre: YA Paranormal
Rating: 5 stars
Yes, yes! Love it, love it! 😀 I finally picked it back up and finished it. I started it in April, right before I started decluttering and such. It’s about half-breed vampires and full-blooded vampires who go to an academy together where the half vamps are training to be guardians to the full vamps one day, and someone is trying to drive the vampire princess insane. And Rose, our MC can feel what the princess is feeling and even see through her eyes sometimes. It’s so much fun, and the world building is great.

32: A Game of Thrones: The Graphic Novel, Volume Two
Author: George R. R. Martin, Adapted By: Daniel Abraham, Artist: Tommy Patterson
Genre: Fantasy, Graphic Novel
Rating: 4 stars
Another book I finally picked back up and finished. THERE ARE SO MANY TERRIBLE PEOPLE IN THIS SERIES. They’re horrible. There’s also a horrible amount going on. There are so many point of views, so much politics. That said, it is good writing, quite entertaining, and super violent and bloody, if you like that. I don’t. 😛

33: Wonder Woman: Her Greatest Hits
Author: Various Authors and Artists
Genre: DC Comics
Rating: 4 stars
I thought it would be fun to read this with the new Wonder Woman movie coming out soon. There are seven stories in this ranging from 1986 to 2017. I have to say, the old style artwork is hilarious and awful, and the dialogue and narration was super cheesy and super cringe. They really, really, REALLY needed a woman to have at least edited those stories. And probably several others if this sample is any indication of what her comics have been like over the years. The only sections I thought were actually good were the ones that took place well into her career when she’s part of the Justice League, “The Secret of the Cheetah” parts one and two written in 2012 and 2103. The stories after that weren’t bad, I just didn’t like them as much. I did like the artwork for the most part outside of the 80s section, and I also have to say, it’s got to be hard to adapt comics into movies.

34: Phoenix Endsong
Author: Greg Pak, Illustrations by: Greg Land
Genre: Marvel Comics
Rating: 4 stars
OMG the artwork in this is fan-fudging-tastic! Gorgeous. The story was pretty easy to follow, which is something I can’t say about most of the Marvel comics I’ve read. I enjoyed getting more backstory about the Phoenix Force, and while I found the plot a little lacking in a couple of places, I thought it was really fun, and there were a lot of things I loved about it.

35: Phoenix Resurrection: The Return of Jean Grey
Author: Matthew Rosenberg, Illustrators: Leinil Francis Yu, Carlos Pacheco, Ramon Rosanas
Genre: Marvel Comics
Rating: 3 stars
This was a hot mess. I LOVED the idea of this, but unfortunately, I need have read a thousand other comics to understand what was going on and why there are multiple versions of some characters. I’m used to being confused when I read Marvel comics, but this almost gave me an actual headache. There were things that just didn’t make sense. The ending was weird and also didn’t really make sense. But the concept is so great. I just wish it was executed better, and maybe with respect to people who haven’t been reading Marvel comic for 40 years. I have to say this: DC handles their multiple storylines and characters so much better. There’s still a lot to absorb, but at least I know what’s going on.

Okay, that’s all. ^_^ Before I go, though, I won a Goodreads giveaway last month! A Wild Winter Swan by Gregory Maguire. So excited. ^_^

Okie dokie. Happy September! 😀


  • Tonja drecker

    Wow! You are on a reading frenzy. Congrats on the book shelves coming in! That sounds like tons of fun. I did enjoy Vampire Academy, too, and I’ve developed a soft-spot for historic mystery…although I need another me to read everything I’d like to. Enjoy your sorting!

  • Kristy A.

    Great job catching up! I feel like I’ve been one or two books behind all year. I LOVE Vampire Academy. I’ve read the whole series twice. 😀 Welcome aboard the fandom. The Beholder is on my list and I’m going to add The Body in the Garden. I love a good murder mystery. I’m also determined to read a poetry book this year. Every time I see you read one, it reminds me of how much poetry I used to read. Can’t wait to see these bookshelves!

    • Krystal Jane

      I can’t wait to see them up either! ^_^

      Yes, more poetry! I need someone to be pretentious with. 😀 I absolutely love the writing in The Beholder. I don’t read too be books that have an epic, sprawling feel like that.

  • ChrysFey

    You read a lot! What a great selection. I had no idea there were graphic novels for A Game of Thrones. Although it doesn’t surprise me. I’ll have to check that out.

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