…and because March was so much fun, April came along and kicked me in my ass.
Let’s Rewind is my version of a monthly wrap up but instead of talking about only books, I include all types of other stuff, like articles… bookish news… commercials… random-ass links… movies… art… podcasts… cartoons… and whatever the hell happened to me in the month. You know, the usual stuff that people talk about in monthly wrap ups. So read on to see what I did and read this month. You might stumble upon something that interests you.
April was not what I expected. It was filled with great surprises that are too personal to share on here, and it kept me so busy that I hardly had time to scratch my nose much less blog. It was a great busyness, but it made me debate quitting my second job because I have even less free time now.
Nothing much occurred in April. I took a trip to NYC for Easter to visit family for fun and left a book behind, so I didn’t have it to read on my roadtrip, unfortunately. And I attended Independent Bookstore Day but didn’t get much and only visited one shop, Politics & Prose, because I was exhausted. I was so tired that I didn’t notice this interruption by White nationalists, which occurred while I was there.
On here, I participated in the O.W.L. Magical Readathon and am now a few steps closer to becoming an aurologist, someone who studies auras. Now I’m on another reading adventure — a full month dedicated to nothing but fantasy. Ahh… 🙂 #wyrdandwonder
The first book I completed in April was Brent Weeks’s Beyond the Shadows, the last book in the Night Angel trilogy, a fantasy story about a street urchin who becomes an assassin’s apprentice. In Beyond the Shadows, Kylar is a full-fledged wetboy (the term used for a bad-ass assassin) whose skills are almost equal to his master’s, Durzo Blint. He puts these skills to work to affect several political outcomes. I enjoyed reading this installment of the trilogy. It was entertaining as always, but there were certain things I didn’t like and I wasn’t enthused about the end. However, if Weeks should write another book set in this world, I will buy and read it.
Jesus’ Son by Denis Johnson was not what I expected. It’s a book of short stories about an unnamed narrator and his experiences, all of which involve drugs. Although well written, I didn’t enjoy my experience reading this book because of its stream-of-consciousness style, which I found annoying but worked well for the effect the author wanted to project. Jesus’s Son was the first book I read for the O.W.L. Magical Readathon. The others are:
All Systems Red by Martha Wells was also unexpected. I’d heard great things about it from other readers, but wondered what that would mean for me when I read it. I didn’t expect the voice of the protagonist, Murderbot, to be so strong and distinct. Of everything in the story, Murderbot’s voice stands out the most and is most memorable. The story is about an android that’s sent to a distant planet to guard a group of scientist but all it really wants to do is just watch a bunch of entertainment shows. All Systems Red was a fun read and I can’t wait to read the other books in the series.
Here’s another unexpected one: Middle Passage by Charles Johnson, a historical fiction novel about a freed slave named Rutherford Calhoun who stows away on a slave ship that’s sailing for Africa to collect members of a legendary African tribe called the Allmuseri. Calhoun was trying to escape his debtor and a woman intent on marrying him when he stowed away and embarked on a frightful adventure that kept me on edge the entire time I read. I was hooked! And despite the horrible situations Calhoun and others were in, there were some funny moments. I really enjoyed this one.
I completed Robin Hobb’s Fool’s Assassin after Middle Passage, but I didn’t read it for the O.W.L. Magical Readathon. Fool’s Assassin is the first novel in the Fitz and the Fool Trilogy, the last set of books that wraps up the Realm of the Elderlings series. In this installment, we see Fitz as a gentleman living in his father’s house with his family. He even has another child with Molly — Bee. It’s a Robin Hobb book so of course it’s great and well written and lots of fun to read and ripped me to pieces by the end. Now I can’t wait to read the second book.
I reread Fullmetal Alchemist, Vols. 1-3 by Hiromu Arakawa (illus.) for the readathon. It’s a sci-fi/fantasy manga series about the Elric brothers who are trying to regain their original bodies after a fateful experiment caused one brother to lose an arm and leg and the other brother to lose his entire body and have his soul bonded to a suit of armor. I love this story so much and was glad to revisit it. But this time around, I noticed how simple it is in some spots and realized that I’d fleshed out some parts on my previous read with my memories of the anime.
I then attempted to read The Passage by Justin Cronin, narr. by Scott Brick, Abby Craden, and Adenrele Ojo. I ended up DNF’ing it. I didn’t read it for the readathon; I just wanted something to listen to at work and since I’d watch the TV show, I decided to give it a go. Unfortunately, the TV show is better. Speeding up the audio did not aid the story’s extremely slow pace and I wasn’t thrilled by how events unfolded in the book as I was when I watched the show. The book is a lot less exciting. Oh! Btw, it’s basically a vampire apocalypse — the government/scientists went to a country in South America to investigate some bats, some folks got bit and changed into vampires, the vampires are studied at a government facility and they make the humans unleash them on the world. Yaddah, yaddah, yaddah.
Okay, I read this for the readathon: Zodiac Starforce, #1 by Kevin Panetta, illus. by Paulina Ganucheau. It’s a YA fantasy comic book about a group of teenage girls who protect the planet against dark creatures. It’s the first issue of the comic, so it was short and gave me just a smidgen of what the story is about. I liked it though and would like to read the first volume.
I then went back to Hiromu Arakawa’s manga series and read Fullmetal Alchemist, Vols. 4-6, which I enjoyed more than the first bunch because the characters begin to gain some depth here and the story starts to get more complex. I whizzed through it and will start on the next bunch of volumes as soon as I’m done with #WyrdandWonder.
I ended April with a good read — Through the Woods by Emily Carroll (illus.). It’s a collection of horror stories as a graphic novel. I enjoyed it and can’t believe I waited so long before reading it. I’m not crazy about the illustration style, but I like the stories for their fairy-tale quality.
** I didn’t read any articles in April. 😦 Too busy and tired.
Nnedi Okorafor Is Creating a TV Series Company for Africanfuturist Stories (brittlepaper.com)
Some Calypso Rose with Machel!!
Not much this time.
Into the Badlands
I’m so pissed that they waited until the last season to get so good! I’ve always loved the show, but the developments in this season are so intriguing. I don’t want this to be its last.
This wasn’t what I expected. I thought it would be the usual Dracula-type movie that portrays him as a monster, but this one presents a Dracula who had good intentions at first. It was okay. I liked it.
I think it was overhyped. It’s not the horror movie I was expecting, but it was okay and I love the discussions I’ve had about it because everyone’s opinion is different, especially about the end and whether or not the son who survives is a doppelganger.
That’s it for my April.
How have you been? What are you reading or watching?
My May is focused on all things fantasy. If you haven’t already done so, click here to enter my GIVEAWAY of up to $30USD fantasy book(s) purchase in honor of #WyrdandWonder.