Sunday Summary – 7th May 2023
Hello and it’s another happy long weekend! Even if the coronation and royalty aren’t your thing… I think we can all agree that it’s great to have another cheeky day off work. We’re back once again for my weekly Sunday Summary post, in which I take you through the books I’ve been reading and talking about!
This week’s blog schedule was a bit hectic, although a mishap last week actually helped me out in the end! With this week being the beginning of May, I naturally had to share my Monthly Wrap Up post for the month of April. I read four and a half books in the month. It may not sound like much, but the first book I read in the month was 906 pages long!
This week, I also had a blog tour obligation. I had the pleasure of kicking off the tour for Eagle of Mercia by MJ Porter. That post went live on Wednesday, 3rd May. If you’re interested in historical fiction or books about British history and the Viking’s coming to Britain, this is a book in the series. You may be interested in.
On Thursday, I shared my Monthly TBR post covering the books I plan to read in May. It looks like a very ambitious list. However, when you think about it this way, the first book was a carryover from April, which I’ve now finished. Some of the books are relatively short, and another, I am taking on in audio.
On Friday, I shared a First Lines Friday post… The one I accidentally drafted last week when I got my regular features muddled up. Thankfully, I realised before I posted it, and so I scheduled it for this week instead. As I mentioned above, that ended up working out in my favour. Including this post, I’ve posted a total of five blogs this week! Having one prepared a little earlier, did me no harm whatsoever!
The Adventures of Amina Al-Sirafi
My first priority of the week was to continue with The Adventures of Amina Al-Sirafi by Shannon Chakraborty. As of my last Sunday Summary, I was halfway through the book.
I enjoyed the premise and the setting of this book. It is one that doesn’t get explored all that much in fantasy. Having read a couple of fantasy novels with Eastern settings, and really enjoying them, I’m definitely going to be seeking out more in future.
I do have some mixed feelings about this one. I had a vague inkling, but the storyline ended up being quite whimsical. At least, that’s how it came across to me. It was okay, but that did detract a little bit of enjoyment for me.
I wanted to read the book as a standalone before I started another series, written by the author. Having read this one, I’m not sure about the series I had in mind. I’ll probably give the first book a try. However, if it’s much like this one, I’ll probably end up there.
Wolf of Wessex
The next book I picked up was Wolf of Wessex by Matthew Harffy. This was the book I was supposed to pick up last month as well, but didn’t quite get around to it.
Wolf of Wessex is much like my recent read, Eagle of Mercia, in setting. I suppose the only difference is that it is set on the other side of the border! I quite liked that the book didn’t dive too heavily into historical element of the Norse coming to Britain. You could easily go into this book not really knowing much, but equally, also having an idea doesn’t really make a difference. As someone who’s read a fair bit of the genre by now, I didn’t feel overly advantaged by this pre-knowledge.
Wolf of Wessex is a fast-paced action novel. I read this book in just a handful of sittings. It ended up being a three-star rating from me because the plot and character development is quite superficial. That’s not to say it wasn’t enjoyable, but these are elements. I really enjoy in a book. They were a little bit lacking here.
The Waste Lands
The last physical read I started this week is Stephen King’s The Waste Lands. I made full disclosure in my May TBR post that I was going to have to go back and read up on what has happened so far in the series as a refresher. Rather spookily, I finished the prior book in the series, The Drawing of the Three, on this day in 2019! I haven’t picked up this series on for years, so it’s no wonder I couldn’t remember what was going on.
As soon as I read those summaries, I was fully back up to speed. I’ve only just started this book today, so I’m only 53 pages in as I’m writing this post. It’s a healthy start though, and it’s great to be back. It’s also been a little minute since I’ve picked up any Stephen King novel. I do like his writing style, so I’m enjoying that too.
As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow
The last book I have progress on which to report is As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow by Zoulfa Katouh. As I mentioned in my TBR, this is the chosen book of the month for Ezeekat’s book club. It’s very different from anything I have read for a very long time. It’s also not a book I would have necessarily thought to pick up of my own volition. In that way, I’m glad it’s come up as part of the book club.
Just this week, I have started and made my way through a third of this book on audio. Through the narrative we explore Syria and its people, ravaged by those who would fight to suppress their revolution. I’ll confess that before starting this book, I didn’t really know what the conflict in Syria was about. It is something that has been happening for many years now, and in truth, we hear little of it.
If you are content with the knowledge that the war and conflict is happening, but over there, then this book is not for you. The narrative pulls no punches in highlighting the devastation inflicted on the general population. Pregnant women and children are targeted by snipers. Men who would stand up and protest anre arrested, and death would be preferable to the treatment they receive. It’s probably not a book for everyone, but I don’t shy away from difficult subjects. I for one am enjoying it so far, and I will be making further progress with this soon.
Much as was the case in my last Sunday Summary post, no news is good news! Given that I’ve managed to take a couple of books off the list, we are now back under 200 on my reading list.
Is it bad that I’m excited about that?!
I’ll be slowing down the pace next week when it comes to blogging by returning to my usual three post schedule.
The first of those posts is a book review for The Feedback Loop by Harmon Cooper. I read this short science-fiction/cyberpunk novel last year and enjoyed it. I’m looking forward to sharing my thoughts with you.
Later in the week, I will be sharing the next addition in my Well, I Didn’t Know That! series. As yet, the topic remains unchristened. I have the week off work, so I’ll take some time to read some different material and find something fun to share with you all!
And as always, I’ll be here at the same time next week for another Sunday Summary.
But now, that is all for today’s Sunday Summary. I’m going to watch an episode of The Last Kingdom on Netflix, and pick up The Waste Lands before going to bed.