BOOK REVIEW | The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

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Read: October 2016

Rating: ★★★★★

Genre: Fantasy

Synopsis: Told in Kvothe’s own voice, this is the tale of the magically gifted young man who grows to be the most notorious wizard his world has ever seen. The intimate narrative of his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, his years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, and his life as a fugitive after the murder of a king form a gripping coming-of-age story unrivaled in recent literature. A high-action story written with a poet’s hand, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that will transport readers into the body and mind of a wizard. Goodreads.

It’s always intimidating to read a book that’s so widely well-loved and admired. This is likely why The Name of the Wind sat in my room unread for so many years. I bought it in about 2014 after seeing so many positive reviews. I hadn’t read much—if any—fantasy since marathoning the entire A Song of Ice and Fire series in 2012. Which was probably because I was feeling more than a little burnt out on fantasy novels after completing that particular task. I’d hoped that The Name of the Wind would inspire/motivate me to pick up fantasy books again.

Which it did, if a few years later than I’d originally intended. I loved this book, really all I’m doing here is contributing to its already considerable hype, but still.

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OCTOBER – DECEMBER READING WRAP UP

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Here’s my (slightly belated) wrap up of all the books I read in the last three months of the year! You can read my January-March wrap up here, my April-June wrap up here, and my July-September wrap up here.

As always, let’s talk about the books I’m currently reading before getting into what I have read. I had the very lofty ambition that I would completely clear my currently reading shelf. It’s really no surprise that I wasn’t successful in doing this. So, once again, I am still reading House of Leaves. It’s such a commitment, so I’ve just been prioritising other books. I’m also about halfway through I Am Malala, which I’d hoped to read for the #DAReadathon, but will probably finish up in January regardless. I also got approved for two ARCs, those being Heartless by Marissa Meyer and Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo. While these are both sitting on my currently reading shelf on Goodreads, I’m only actively reading Heartless at the moment.

Now, here are the books I have read!

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Books I’d Like to Read in 2017

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For a long time, I’d assumed that things like monthly TBRs don’t really work for me because I’m mostly a mood reader. That, coupled with the fact that for the last four years I’d had mountains of assigned reading, I never really liked tying myself to reading certain books within a certain time frame.

As it turns out, I was dead wrong, and setting tentative TBRs has actually helped me a lot in getting around to reading books that have been sitting around my room for ages. I made a post like this last year and you might notice that a couple of the books that I mentioned last year, are also on this list. That’s mostly because I was lazy, and didn’t push myself to read them, so they’re top priority this year. I’m thinking about setting a “theme” for myself each month—for instance, I’ve decided that I’ll read only fantasy books in February. This way I know I have to read certain books.

Very quickly, the books I’m carrying over are The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson, Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb, and The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers. I talked about them a little in last year’s post, so I won’t go into them here. On the plus side, I did read two of the books on last year’s list so that’s not bad, right? 2 out of 5? Right.

Anyway, here are the books that I’m making a priority in 2017. As always, the covers will take you to the Goodreads page.

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BEST BOOKS OF 2016

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Hello! I’ve been somewhat absent. Again. I’m trying very hard not to make this a habit, though I’ve really no excuse for my lack of posts. Obviously Christmas happened, and I work in retail, so I’ll let you imagine exactly how fun that was. I’d hoped to get this post up on Monday, but then New Year’s Eve happened and I was, perhaps, a touch hungover on New Year’s Day. Mostly, however, I was very full of cold, so my plans for a productive New Year’s unraveled very quickly. I promise I’ll be better at this (it is, actually, one of my goals for this year).

Anyway, it’s time to talk about my favourite books that I read in 2016! Much like my 2015 favourites, there’s not one single reason all of these books are on the list. Frankly, some of them are poles apart in terms of content and tone. This list basically consists of all the books I gave five stars this year, and some I gave four stars to (I’m remarkably stingy about five star ratings, for some reason). These books aren’t in any particular order, and there’s roughly ten books overall. This is very likely going to be a lengthy post, so I’ll get right into it!

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BOOKISH CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE

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If you’re anything like me, you’ve barely started your Christmas shopping, and are frantically searching through gift guides hoping for inspiration. Today, I thought I’d share with you my go-tos when it comes to buying Christmas gifts for bookish friends. Though, honestly, they’re usually the easiest friends to buy for!

I know that this was a Top Ten Tuesday topic, but you’ll notice that it isn’t in the same format as my usual Top Ten Tuesday posts. There are way more than ten books in here, and I’ve split each of my recommendations into different categories. So while it isn’t in the same vein as TTTs usually are, I figured I’d give it a mention!

Without further ado, here are my recommendations!

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HOLIDAY TBR #2

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So I’m lucky enough to be going on another holiday next week! I’m heading to Antalya, Turkey, with my parents. They asked if I’d like to go with them, and really, I’m not about to say no to a free holiday, so here I am. If you saw my previous holiday TBR, you’ll know that I aim to read a lot of books while I’m away, owing to doing basically nothing else but read for an entire week. This TBR is no less ambitious, so let’s get right into it!

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SERIES REVIEW | Captive Prince — C.S. Pacat

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READ: February 2016

GENRES: Romance, Fantasy.

AVERAGE RATING: ★★★★★

I put off reading these books for the longest time. I first heard about them a few years ago, and for whatever reason I was never tempted enough to pick them up. With the release of the third and final book a couple of months ago, it started popping up on my Tumblr dash again, so I impulse bought the first book. To be honest, when I started reading Captive Prince I really wasn’t sure that I was going to like it. I didn’t read the synopsis when I bought it, so I’d forgotten that the books were going to deal quite so closely with slavery. Despite that, I ended up staying awake until 3AM reading Captive Prince, and when I finished it up the next day, I began hunting down copies of the second and third book. It’s a really enjoyable, really interesting series. They are kind of “guilty pleasure” books, but I enjoyed them so much that I’m past whatever “guilt” I felt .

Here’s the synopsis:

Damen is a warrior hero to his people, and the truthful heir to the throne of Akielos, but when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave.

Beautiful, manipulative and deadly, his new master Prince Laurent epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent to survive and save his country.

For Damen, there is just one rule: never, ever reveal his true identity. Because the one man Damen needs is the one man who has more reason to hate him than anyone else.

Before I really get into it, I need to warn you for discussions of slavery, sex slavery, sexual abuse, rape, threat of rape, threat of violence, actual violence, and paedophilia. These issues feature or are discussed in the books at varying levels of intensity, but I’d rather overstate them than understate them. So if any of those things makes you feel uncomfortable, it’s worth seriously thinking about whether you want to read the books.

With that mentioned, let’s get on into my review.

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BOOKS I’D LIKE TO READ IN 2016

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Is it too late to be making posts like this? Probably. But let’s all pretend that it isn’t.

So, I am absolutely awful for buying books and then just…not reading them. In a lot of ways, it’s a really terrible habit, and I’m trying to get to the point where every book I own and haven’t read is one that I’m excited to read. Of course, this doesn’t include the books I have to read for my MA. I’m not forcing myself to feel excited about some of those. With this in mind, I looked over the books that I own and began ordering them in a way that prioritises the ones that I really should get around to reading, so I thought I’d share some of those with you today!

As an aside: there’s a theme here. There is a very clear theme. You can probably already tell what it is.

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BEST BOOKS OF 2015

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There’s really not one unifying reason for all the books being on this list, and so there’s really no order to them either. Put simply, these are the books that I enjoyed the most this year, the ones that I look back on most fondly. For that reason, I didn’t actually give all of the books on this list a five-star rating (though really, if I’m being completely honest, there’s no logic behind which books I give five stars and which I don’t) and I’m certainly not saying that these are the best books ever written, or that they’ll appeal to everyone, I literally just enjoyed reading these books a whole lot, and I’m very excited to talk about every single one of them.

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