March in Ottawa, where I live, should be a melty kind of month where the temperatures steadily increase. This year, we just keep getting more snow, which is really starting to weigh on me. I’m done with winter and I want it to just go away now. This has also, apparently, been the darkest winter we’ve had in 80 years, which probably isn’t helping, either.

I should really just stop looking at the long term forecast and further depressing myself. 🙃

In any case, enough of my weather-whining. Onward to the March Reading Recap.

I was sick for a few days in March, and am still kind of off my game a week later, which has definitely thrown a wrench into my writing schedule. On the other hand, I did get a lot more reading done this month than I normally would because I couldn’t handle much more than lying on the couch for those days, so I blew through the entire Shadow and Bone trilogy really quickly.

Akata Witch (Nnedi Okorafor)
It took me a while to get into this one, but I’m glad I stuck with it. I think it was the language usage, which is very different than what I’m used to. Once I got into the flow of it, I was able to sink into the story. It was also a fascinating look at magic systems and fantasy through an African lens, as opposed to the Western stuff I usually see. Worth reading just for that different point of view alone.

The Castle of Tangled Magic (Sophie Anderson)
This was a really charming story with some great messaging about learning to trust yourself, even when you make mistakes. It’s got a simpler plot line and language usage than most of the middle grade stuff I’ve read recently, and I think this one would really appeal to younger middle grade readers, or those still honing their English reading skills, who are ready to move beyond the early chapter books and want a longer story.

Shad Hadid and the Alchemists of Alexandria (George Jreije)
I enjoyed this one. Like The Castle of Tangled Magic, this one was a simpler plot line than you’d find in the upper middle grade stuff, which makes it a great choice for younger readers. There were some good plot twists and even an epic food fight a one point, which would appeal to kids. The main character had a lot of charm, with a hefty dose of snark and wit.

Stellarlune (Shannon Messenger)
I’ve been gushing about the whole Keeper of the Lost Cities series for a while now, so I won’t gush today. Suffice it to say, I loved this latest installation as much as I loved the rest of the books, and I can’t wait for the next. Definitely recommended. 😁

The Stars Did Wander Darkling (Colin Meloy)
This one had some strong Stranger Things vibes, and I personally loved the eighties setting because that’s where most of my childhood happened, complete with the guy who insisted Betamax would definitely win the rental movie wars because it was the better technology. This one was weird (in a good way) and creepy and flipped between the kids and the bad guys, so that was also interesting. Definitely recommended if you like eerie horror.

The Clackity (Lora Senf)
This is a fantastic middle grade horror. Really, really enjoyed it. Different take on a magical journey, and a really well done take, at that. The main character deals with anxiety and panic attacks that add an extra element to her journey. And you’ll love Bird almost as much as you love the main character. Highly recommended for those who like spooky books. Looking forward to the next one.

Shadow and Bone
Siege and Storm
Ruin and Rising (Leigh Bardugo)
I picked up the trilogy boxset over the holidays when it was on sale, and only just got around to reading them. (And yes, I know I’m as late to this party as I was to the Keeper of the Lost Cities world, but, wow, I really enjoyed this intro to the Grishaverse.) None of the characters were entirely morally black or white, which was fascinating. The bad guy was a monster, but I still felt sorry for him. The heroine took more than a few steps into the dark side, but I was still cheering for her. Just a really well done series. Trying to decide whether I want to watch the Netflix adaption or not — I really loved the series so I’ll be really disappointed if the show doesn’t live up to the books.

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