Book Haul #45: Bought Things

And here’s my third book haul for the year. I think I’m doing well, though these haul posts are usually long. But despite the length, the majority of books are often free or borrowed from the library, I think. I haven’t bought that many books this year, compared to other years, which is good because once again I’ve ran out of space.


Physical books

The Shape of Water by Guillermo del Toro and Daniel Kraus

I loved the movie and was elated when I heard a novelized version would be published. I immediately placed it on hold at my library and was one of the first patrons to receive a digital copy. But then I did a stupid thing and returned it by accident before I had a chance to read it.

Luckily the physical copy was available at my library to borrow. But as soon as I started reading, I realized this is a book I have to own. As with the movie, I immediately fell for the story. I’m still reading it now. Actually, I took a break from it because other books (ARCs) got in the way. But I can’t wait to get back to it. The book seems to be exactly like the movie, yet even so, I still enjoy reading it and am totally engrossed when I do.

The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski

I’m intrigued by the Witcher fantasy series, which has received lots of high praises. Earlier in the year I bought Blood of Elves thinking it’s the first book in the series, which seems to be technically correct but many have referred to The Last Wish as the first “book” because the stories in it precede the full story that appears in Blood of Elves. Well, that’s how I understand it and that’s why I bought The Last Wish and will begin with it when I’m ready to read these books.

Very Good, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse

I hear nothing but high praises for Wodehouse’s books when they are mentioned. I was motivated to purchase one of his books back in April after reading these two posts about his work: Book’s by Proxy’s list of favorite quotes by Wodehouse and the Bookstooge’s review of the Jeeves omnibus Thank You, Jeeves. They both got me curious about Wodehouse’s books again and when I was at the store, a book seller was more than happy to help me find a copy because she enjoys Wodehouse’s books too.

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

I’ve often heard of this book because it’s the favorite of many book lovers, but it wasn’t until I listened to this BBC podcast in March that my interest in it was perked and I sought to get myself a copy. The podcast features an interview with the author talking about the book.

Pepperpot: Best New Stories from the Caribbean featuring stories by various authors

I had to get myself a copy of this after reading Darkowaa’s review of it. I don’t own many books by Caribbean authors and haven’t read many either, so I’m trying to remedy that.

Rasputin, Vol. 2: The Road to the White House by Alex Grecian, illus. by Riley Rossmo

I read the first volume of this comic book series 2 years ago and liked it. I forgot that I’m subscribed to it at my comic bookshop, so when the subscription came up, I got it. It’s a historical fiction, fantasy comic book series based on the famous monk who served the Romanov family, Rasputin. I’ve always been fascinated by the tales I’ve heard about him, so I couldn’t pass up this comic book when I first saw it.

The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

I’ve wanted this ever since Penguin published their Orange Collection. I love the cover so much! It was Penguin’s birthday a couple weeks ago so they sent out 20%-off with free shipping coupons to all subscribed to their newsletter. I received one and used it to get this beauty. I can’t recall if I’ve read it in the past, though; but I know I have read something by Tan before.

The Jamaican Ninga Bert!! by Richie Drenz

I pushed my cousin to attend a book festival in Kingston, Jamaica, earlier this year since I couldn’t, and he got me this book while there. Apparently, it’s a romantic comedy, but I wouldn’t have guessed from the cover and title.

Used bookstore purchases

I hardly ever shop at used bookstores because I prefer my books to feel brand new. But a used bookstore recently popped up in the D.C. area and I couldn’t resist not checking it out. It’s called Carpe Librum and it has about 3 locations around D.C. I visited 2 and picked up the following. All their books cost under $5 and many of them are in great condition. Some like By the Book and Mockingjay below felt new.

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke

The varying reviews I’ve seen of this book made me ambivalent about reading it, but I was convinced to give it a try when I read this post on the Book Satchel. I’m curious to see how it mixes in academia and research because the school-based fantasy novels I’ve read all focus on younger characters, usually in their teens. This one seems to be set in, or at least hints at, a more advanced academic setting, like a college or university.

The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin

A fantasy classic I often hear good things about and finally got around to purchasing.

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

Funny story: I already own this book but forgot I did. I own an e-copy of it, which is why I forgot because it’s hard to remember what e-books I own. I hardly ever see them unless I decide to read one. I was a little pissed that I repurchased the same book, but I only paid $2 for it so it’s not that bad.

By the Book: Writers on Literature and the Literary Life from the New York Times Book Review

This compiles the “By the Book” column featured in the New York Times, which is one of my favorite columns in that newspaper. (I also love the latest in fantasy books column that N.K. Jemisin writes and the picture books column.) When I saw it, and the great condition it’s in, I HAD to get it. I snatched it up quickly before anyone else could, though there weren’t that many people in the shop at the time.

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

It’s the third book in Collins’s Hunger Games series. I read the first two books years ago, but I’m horrible at completing trilogies/series, so I never bought or read this one. I’m currently rereading the series and will reread Catching Fire sometime this summer. I’m so glad this copy feels new. I can pretend it’s brand new.

The Outlaws of Sherwood and The Door in the Hedge both by Robin McKinley

McKinley is one of my favorite writers and favorite authors of YA novels. When I saw these in the store, I yelped a little and quickly grabbed them. I’d like to collect all the books of hers I’ve read. Unfortunately, these don’t look brand new on the inside because the pages have yellowed some, but I’m still glad to own them.


Swordspoint by Ellen Kushner

Somehow, I found this post on written by Jo Walton about this book. It got me interested, so when I saw it on a Goodreads Deal, I bought it.

The Gray House by Mariam Petrosyan, trans. by Yuri Machkasov

I forgot when this happened, but back in April or early May, Amazon gave away free e-books of selected translated works it published. I chose this one because it’s categorized as fantasy and I kinda think it might be horror.

So… This is quite long already because I’m chatty, so I’ll do a separate post with free and borrowed books.

Let me know if you’ve read any of these.

28 thoughts on “Book Haul #45: Bought Things

  1. Great haul! Loved Shadow of the Wind. Read it right after it came out. The Shape of Water cover is so beautiful. Been wanting to see the movie. Great insight about character. I’ll read the book before watching the movie. Thanks for sharing!


    1. 😊 I think I’ll like it. I recently completed “How to Love a Jamaican,” which is a short story collection that will be published in July, I think, and it was pretty decent.


  2. I really appreciated the additional insight that The Shape of Water offers in the book, but found the movie worked much better for me. I think my dislike of Strickland made the alternating perspectives a bit of a challenge! But still a solid read!


    1. I’m only a few chapters in but I appreciate the additional insight as well. Hmm, I wonder if I’ll feel the same about Strickland. I don’t like him and didn’t like him in the movie either, but I like that the book provides more backstory for him to make me understand his character and to give him some complexity.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I haven’t been buying as many books this year, either. Mostly because I’ve run out of space, but also because I spent WAAAAY too much money on books last year. So I’m doing a better job of making fewer impulsive purchases and more selective, informed choices. But, of course, when you find a signed copy of Juliet Marillier’s Son of the Shadows at a local bookseller, you can’t help yourself – especially when you’ve been looking for that book forever!

    The Left Hand of Darkness is one of my favorite UKLG books of all time – great choice there. 😉 The Miniaturist is nearing the top of my TBR pile, so I should be getting to that soon. And I read Strange & Norrell a few years ago… and DNFed it. I just had a hard time settling into the story, so my patience eventually ran out. But I think I might be in the minority there…


    1. Lol! Haha, yes! In those cases you gotta buy!

      Yea, I’m hoping I’ll like Left-Hand of Darkness. I didn’t realize it was part of a series though.

      I think your opinion of Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell is the popular one. Most reviews I’ve seen are of folks DNF’ing it. Only a few say they really like it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Huh. Maybe we just happen to be in the same crowd for Strange & Norrell? I know it was really popular when it first came out, enough so that it eventually became a TV mini-series.


  4. Lusting after the cover of “Shape Of Water”. It looks so gorgeous. I’ve read “Mockingjay” and enjoyed it. Heard great things about “The Shadow Of The Wind”. Need to add it on my ever-stretching TBR list.


  5. Really cool haul! I got The Shadow of the Wind and have been dying to read it for years and still haven’t gotten around to it hahaha Gosh, seeing books I own but have not read yet is a bit depressing. 🤣


    1. Omg! I just realized I confused the Shadow of the Wind with the Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. Arghh!!! Okay, ignore my last comment, Lashaan. I just got Shadow of the Wind but the Name of the Wind has been on my shelves forever.
      So many windy titles, smh.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Anything by Robin McKinley is wonderful. I read both of those and loved them. Though the details be fuzzy now. Also Jonathan Strange is one that both the first mate and I adored. He studied a lot of work from the time period it is set in and thought it was brilliant. Of course it is long and those details are not as clear as they once were. Swordspoint was amazing and fabulous. Hmmm a theme is that the details are fading there too! These were all read before I started me log. I think a re-read of some of these may be in order. Of course I don’t remember which I own in the hold and which I borrowed. Apparently me mind be a sieve. Can’t keep me noggin organized. Hope ye enjoy!
    x The Captain

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol! It happens. There are many books I read that I wish I remembered in detail now, one of which I’ve been searching high and low for but can’t find because I can’t remember the title or author or what exactly it’s about. I only remember it’s a middle-grade novel with loads of fairy creatures that I read in the 1990s as a kid.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.