With another month coming to an end, it’s time for another wrap up. Throughout August, I managed to finish 11 books (5 novels, a novella, a poetry collection, a non-fiction book, a play and two graphic novels.) This took my total for the year so far up to 91, meaning I may well hit my target of 100 books sooner rather than later, which is nice.
Overall it was a very enjoyable reading month, with lots of gems to talk about. A real highlight was Nin Andrews’ collection of prose poetry, Why God is a Woman. The interlinked poems tell the story of an island where men are descendants of angels who become the sexualised objects of the ruling women once they hit puberty and begin to sprout wings. Hugely approachable in its language, yet fiercely intelligent in its satirical look at the gender roles we carve for ourselves within society; I loved it.
I also loved The Trees by Ali Shaw, a strange but wonderfully realised book that defies genre, weaving together elements of adventure, fantasy, mythology, love and self-discovery in lush prose. The story follows a group of survivors who attempt to travel from England to Ireland after the ground erupts with endless numbers of trees which destroy buildings, displace people and harbour mysterious secrets. The characters are the driving force, with each of them being distinct and very well developed.
The Reason I Jump was an eye-opening and touching little book written by a Japanese schoolboy to try and dispel myths surrounding autism, from which he suffers, and aid people in better understanding how he and people like him think and feel.
I was glad to read another David Mitchell, with Slade House being a fun riff on the haunted house set-up that became an intricate fantasy story that tied in nicely to The Bone Clocks, which I read last month. It was also fun to revisit Peter Pan for the first time since childhood, whilst This One Summer provided wonderful escapism, perfectly capturing the time in life when we are on the brink of adolescence with a quiet, charming story and beautiful artwork.
I won’t go into my full thoughts on Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – though I have done a review on Goodreads if you wish to read it – but I can’t really not mention it since it’s the talk of the book world right now. In short, I thought it was a fun, action-packed read that would no doubt be mesmerising to see performed in a live setting, but as an entry in the overall Harry Potter franchise, I thought it was riddled with plot holes, relied on (and messed with) the prior books too much rather than trying to stand on its own merits, and felt disjointed from the series as a whole. Essentially, it really showed that Rowling wasn’t the principal writer and as such it will never feel canon to me. That said, it has been pretty nice and nostalgic to have the Harry Potter buzz back in the world.
Thanks for stopping by. I look forward to seeing what September has in store for me in terms of reading adventures.
What was your favourite read in August?