Hello everyone! I was pretty positive that I would be able to read all the books I set out to read. Alas, that simply was not possible due to life circumstances. This month was an amazing reading month as I found so many all time favourites. These are the seven books I read this month!
Sadie- Courtney Summers
Sadie was an emotional rollercoaster. I knew that by going into a Courtney Summers books, I would be emotionally devastated but it still hurts so much. This book tells the story of Sadie who has gone missing after the death of her sister. We spend the story understanding her perspective and the people around her trying to solve the mystery of her disappearance. I really loved the relationship between Sadie and her sister. It was messy but it was visible that they still deeply cared for one another. The parts when the grandmother was talking about the family dynamics made me tear up so much too! It was a harrowing tale told in a very interesting format- podcasts. If you want to immerse yourself in the full experience, I highly recommend listening to the audiobook. The voice actors were phenomenal. This story is about sisterhood, finding self-worth, family and challenging societal views.
Skyward- Brandon Sanderson
I absolutely adored skyward! It has really been a hot minute since I read a scifi book that is out of this world. Perhaps, I have not been finding the right books. I definitely regret not reading a Brandon Sanderson book sooner. His writing style really grasps your attention- I loved how he included complicated pilot terms in a way that it is easy to understand but also allows his readers to appreciate the complexity of the terms. Skyward is about Spensa, a 17-year old girl who has always dreamed of becoming a pilot just like her father. She has always been fascinated by flying and “reaching the stars”. This leads her to sit for the pilot exam but things go awry soon after. She faces a lot of challenges on the road to becoming a pilot due to an incident involving her father years ago. However, her stubbornness and resilience helps her on her journey. I really loved all the characters in this book, even the head of flight school as they each had their own reasons to act the way they did. They were all morally grey characters. However, my favourite character has to be Spensa. She is a full of sarcasm but underneath her tough girl act, she is a really caring person. She did anything she could to help others and deeply cared for her companions and family. The concept of this world is interesting as well, to say the least. We are following the story of humans grappling with alien attacks in a post-alien invasion world. (I do not think that I described that well oops) To counter these attacks, a group of pilots are selected to defeat these alien creatures. I loved reading about flight school and all the flight terminology. It was such a brilliant book. I am definitely going to read more of Sanderson’s work, especially the Mistborn series.
What would a Muslim say?- Ahmed Lofty Rashed
*** I was sent the ebook in exchange for an honest review via BookSirens *** Being a Muslim myself, I wanted to know more about my faith from books other than the Quran. When I chanced upon this book, I knew I had to read it. I felt that the author described our faith to those seeking understanding of our faith very eloquently. I really admire him for creating interfaith dialogues to educate Non-Muslims about Islam and its values. He highlighted that Islam is a religion of peace and clarified the distorted perception of Islam. I learnt more about issues such as handling criticism, backbiting and terrorism. This book made me feel more hopeful about the world. However, I felt like more topics could have been discussed more thoroughly in terms of perhaps, the ongoing war between Muslims globally. I am thankful for this book and I think it serves as a good introduction of Islam to Non-Muslims as well as Muslims.
The hunter’s wife- Anthony Doerr
*** I apologise for the poor quality of this image but I could not find a clearer version of the cover. ***
The hunter’s wife is a short love story of a hunter and his wife set in the period of winter. The descriptions were so immersive, so lush but unfortunately, I do not remember much of the story. I think it is a story I would definitely read again as I might have missed the message of it.
Born a crime- Trevor Noah
Loved reading his stories, especially the ones on his experiences with his mother. Their relationship is so heartwarming. I got to say, he has such a way with words. Despite facing troubling times, he was still so optimistic about life and that’s truly inspiring. It is hard to look at the bright sides of life when constantly being bogged down with problems but if we change our mindset, we can learn to appreciate the good in the bad. That is one of the lessons I learned from his stories. He went through a period of apartheid, had to deal with issues like racism and felt lost as a “coloured” individual but he never once let those things bring him down. Another thing I learnt is that even if you are not given an opportunity, if you want that something, you would make a way for it. In his case, he did not have much money to get by so he found ways to make it. And did I mention he is hilarious! His jokes never failed to make me cackle. I can’t believe I did not discover him sooner. I will definitely have to check his comedy out. Highly recommend this book!
Binti- Nnedi Okorafor
An inspiring short story about a courageous girl who challenges the expectations of her society by pursuing her dream. The story was unlike anything I have read before. It was about Binti’s encounter with aliens on the way to where she was going to study. Her conversations with the aliens were hilarious. I would quake in fear if I was in front of aliens! I admired her intelligence as well as her quick thinking. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series to experience more of Binti’s world.
Black Flamingo- Dean Atta
Another book I adored. Black flamingo is a coming-of-age story of Michael who is coming into terms with him being mixed race and gay. (questioning his sexuality too) From a young age, he found himself being attracted to playing with dolls and dresses which society perceives as girly things. However, Michael being his fabulous self, did not let society society get to him. He spends his teenage years discovering what he likes and dislikes, importance of friendship and his sexuality. He encountered difficult situations along the way but with his positivity, he conquered them all. I really admired how he stood up for himself. Later in his life, during university, he discovers drag and it opens doors for him to embrace himself more. This is a tangent but I deeply connected with his experience as a first year in university- the newness of it all seems intimidating at first but slowly, you get used to it. Michael also used poetry as an outlet for his thoughts and feelings which was interesting to read. Dean Atta’s poetry is so raw, emotional and speaks to you. I may be wrong but the story of Michael felt like a reflection of Dean’s life as they both had the same identities. This story is really an inspiration to so many youths out there. Along with sharing his experiences, Dean also gives youths advice and encourages young people to embrace themselves, to take things in their own stride. I really appreciate this book and I hope more people would read it. Also, if you have the chance, listen to the audiobook. Dean narrates the story and it’s phenomenal!
Thank you for reading this post! I highly recommend checking out all these books. I think I will be taking a break from posting for the month of April and first half of May since I have some assignments to complete and lots of revision to do. Till next time, take care 🙂