{Wrap-Up} • OWLs 2020

Another month has gone, and boy what a month it was! I read 24 things in April, which I believe was my best reading month… ever? (Ok maybe NEWTs months have been my best, but they were mostly graphic novels). Because I’ve read so many things, I decided to divide my wrap-up into two posts – an OWLs wrap-up, and the other books I read in April. So first, we are going to wrap up my OWLs. I read twelve books, completing all twelve OWLs. I can now concentrate on the NEWTs in August, for which I will continue my Spell Maker career!

The Training of Kame-Sen’Nin (Dragon Ball #3) by Akira Toriyama

Honestly, these mangas are just fun and nostalgia for me. This one introduced a character from the series that I know really well (and I only now found out he has NO NOSE?!) and I loved the whole tournament part. But it ended with a cliffhanger, ahhh (I have bought the next volumes since).

Cawpile: 8 | 7 | 8 | 7.5 | 8 | 7 | 10
| Goodreads

Heart of Iron (Heart of Iron #1) by Ashley Poston

An Anastasia retelling, in space? Sign me UP! I love it when books are surprising, and Heart of Iron was certainly a surprising book. It went in a way I had not expected it would go and that made me enjoy it just a bit more. For a moment, about halfway through, I was afraid it was going to disappoint View Spoiler » but the story picked up SO MUCH after this.

I loved all the characters (especially Jax and Robb), I loved the relationships, and I really loved the Anastasia/Romanov influences throughout the story. If you loved the animated movie and if you love reading about the actual Romanovs, I recommend you try this book out!

Cawpile: 8 | 8 | 8 | 7 | 9 | 8 | 9
| Goodreads

Het Wonderkabinet by Brian Selznick

I had heard a lot about Brian Selznick’s books before but had not really bothered to look at what they were about. Then, I found the Dutch edition of his book Wonderstruck for €5 at a bookstore and decided to bring it home with me.

Wonderstruck was an amazing story about two kids who end up making a similar journey – Ben travels to New York to find out the truth about his father. Rose travels to New York to try and meet a mysterious actress. As we go through the story we find out more and more similarities between the two, and in the end, their stories collide in a most unexpected way.

I really loved this story, especially the unique way Rose’s story was told. Ben’s story was told through regular prose, Rose’s story was told through drawings. That is how I managed to make my way through this 600+ page book in one day, also because it was so captivating and I *needed* to know how it ended.

If you love unique stories, I highly recommend you try out this book (or any of Brian’s books, as I believe more of his books are written like this).

Cawpile: 7 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 7 | 8 | 8
| Goodreads

Ark by Veronica Roth

This was a really short but nice story about the last days of earth and scientists who try to decide which flora they want to bring with them to mankind’s new destination. I didn’t really like Samantha too much, but I loved her short friendship with another scientist and I did enjoy the way it ended (and gods I want a full story now).

Cawpile: 6 | 7 | 8 | 6 | 6 | 7 | 7
| Goodreads

Are You Watching? by Vincent Ralph

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, this has not changed my opinion in any way.

The premise of this book was very promising – a girl using a youtube reality series to try and find her mother’s killer. But for me, personally, I think it didn’t really deliver. I really enjoyed the first half of the book and I actually stayed up way too late reading through the majority of this book, but the way the book ended brought my rating down to a 3,5 star instead of a full 4 star.

I wasn’t a huge fan of Jess as a main character and I didn’t really like her friends either. She didn’t grow on me until later on in the book, but then towards the end, she did some things that made me sigh out loud multiple times.

All-in-all I thought it was an interesting book, but the ending kind of ‘ruined’ it for me (I guess, idk that’s not really the right word).

Cawpile: 6 | 7 | 8 | 7 | 7 | 6.5 | 7
| Goodreads

Catching Fire (The Hunger Games #2) by Suzanne Collins *

Oof the end of this book still gets me EVERY TIME. The new audiobooks, narrated by Tatiana Maslany are amazing and I highly recommend you try them out.

Cawpile: 9 | 10 | 8 | 8.5 | 9 | 9 | 10
| Goodreads

Aru Shah and the Song of Death (Pandava Quartet #2) by Roshani Chokshi

I loved how this book immediately throws you right back into the action. I feel as if no time at all had passed since the end of the previous book (I believe it may have only been a couple of hours or so?). I loved being back with Aru and Mini and I especially loved meeting the new characters of Aiden (ok we’d met him in the previous book a bit) and Brynne.

This book taught me a couple of things about a mythology I had no prior knowledge of before starting this series, so I am honestly very grateful for that. The glossary at the back will help out as well if you’re confused by some of the names (because I was, sometimes). I highly recommend you pick up these books if you loved any of Rick Riordan’s books and if you love learning about mythologies in a fun way!

I have already ordered the third book in this quartet and will hopefully pick it up soon!

Cawpile: 9 | 9 | 9 | 9 | 9 | 8.5 | 10
| Goodreads

Wayward Son (Simon Show #2) by Rainbow Rowell

NGL I was super excited for this book but I was hesitant when the reviews came in.. I had picked it up myself a couple of times but put it back on the shelf because I just wasn’t feeling it. In the end, I listened to the audiobook and I think that honestly helped a lot.

I was a bit sad there was only one narrator even though there were five POVs, but the more I listened, the more I realised the narrator was doing different voices for each of the characters. That being said, I don’t know if it was really necessary to put so many POVs. I know the previous book had those as well, but I’d have been fine if there had been less (maybe one or two).

The story was great, but I do feel like there could have been more. It didn’t really pick up for me until I was about halfway through. I did love the story and the characters enough to give it four stars though. View Spoiler »

Cawpile: 8 | 8 | 8.5 | 7 | 7.5 | 7 | 8
| Goodreads

Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker and Wendy Xu

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This has not changed my opinion in any way.

Oh my god, this was just so adorable! I love the atmosphere of this graphic novel and I loved the two main characters. The artwork was really beautiful as well, I might go and check out more by Wendy Xu soon!

Cawpile: 8 | 8 | 8 | 7.5 | 8 | 8 | 10
| Goodreads

Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant

Well fuck. Honestly, the whole killer mermaid thing didn’t scare me. It was the fact that they were in the middle of the ocean, on a boat, with no way of escaping. I am terrified of open water and this just stressed me THE FUCK OUT. Also, I wasn’t a huge fan of the way it ended? <spoiler> Like the whole story kind of dragged out and then the ending happens SUPER FAST and I really wished it had been a bit more fleshed out I guess?). Still, I will probably have nightmares about being attacked by sirens for the rest of my life, thanks Mira Grant.

Cawpile: 7 | 9 | 8 | 7.5 | 8 | 8 | 8
| Goodreads

Switchback by Danika Stone

I pre-ordered this book immediately when I heard there was going to be an asexual protagonist. Then I kept picking it up and putting it down. This month, I finally read the entirety of this book in less than 24 hours, staying up until 5am to finish it, that’s how much I enjoyed it. Vale is asexual and aromantic and honestly, I could relate to her SO MUCH. I loved her as a character and I loved her friendship with Ash. View Spoiler »

If you’re looking for a thrilling book with great aroace rep, definitely pick up Switchback!

Cawpile: 8 | 8 | 8 | 8 | 7 | 8 | 9
| Goodreads

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder (AGGGTM #1) by Holly Jackson

Ok, this book kept me up way past my bedtime. I was just so invested in the story, when I got more than halfway through I found it difficult to put down. There were still a couple of things I didn’t like, some of the things Pip did I didn’t agree with. I had thought the conclusion was too convenient but then it hit me in the face. But why WHY View Spoiler »

Cawpile: 7 | 7 | 7.5 | 8 | 9 | 7 | 8
| Goodreads

So those are the twelve books I read for the OWLs. Tomorrow I’ll share the other twelve books I read this month!

How did your OWLs go?