March was a busy month for me. I ended up reading six books. Goodreads suspiciously has my reading challenge as ahead of schedule. I’m beginning to think Goodreads is just trying to keep my self-esteem intact.
I finished the second and third book in the Red Queen series. I have mixed feelings about them. First, I waited over a year to even begin the series because I hate waiting to read sequels. (It’s a problem, I know!) So, when I got half-way through the third book and realized there was no way this was the last book, I may or may not have thrown a tantrum.
Yes, that reaction may have been immature. But, in my defense, if the third book was so chock full of plot that there was no way it could have been wrapped up in three books, fine. That’s one thing. As unhappy as it would have made me, I would have totally understood. That’s not how I felt though. It felt like the book was stretched. Stretched to justify a fourth book. So, I am reserving final judgement until the final book is in my hands. I hope it’s worth the wait.
Carve the Mark was next. Okay, okay, I know! I just said I hate waiting. I get it. I’m a book hypocrite who can’t even get my own rules straight. I KNOW! Some books scream for attention though. I had to.
There has been a lot of criticism over this book, so I admit my curiosity did play a role in voiding my do not wait rule. I also loved the Divergent series, (yes, even how Allegiant ended), so I was really interested to see what direction this new world would take.
Honestly, I loved it. The only thing I will say regarding the controversy is this. Every book can be dissected and torn apart given enough scrutiny. Any book. I do not believe in encouraging ANYONE to not read a book based on what I think of it. That’s encouraging censorship.
I understand that some people feel that some subjects can be harmful. That they can in fact, be more harmful than helpful. But, that’s not anyone’s decision to make but mine. I should be able to read whatever I want and form my own opinion. And I adamantly believe that anyone should have that right.
It’s easy to get caught up in hype. Good hype and bad. We don’t want to support racism, or sexism, or oppression in any way. We shouldn’t want to support those. But sometimes, one person’s opinion of an issue, is just that. Their opinion. Being an engaged reader means we read to form our own opinions. And we should never push those opinions on anyone. Instead, we should open a dialogue and engage in conversation.
Lauren Oliver has been a long time favorite author if mine. I was thrilled when I got to meet her last year at a book conference! Her new book, Rooms, was next on my list.
Normally Oliver writes YA. This was her first foray into adult fiction and she did not hold back. Ghosts and hidden pasts and intertwining story lines wove together to create a beautiful story. I love her writing, always have, and this book was no different. I was enthralled with the story and enjoyed watching how all the characters came together in the end.
Finally, March ended with two emotional whoppers. Female of the Species and All the Ugly and Wonderful Things. Both books were incredible. I would recommend them to anyone, and wrote separate posts about each one. Be warned, they cover topics that are difficult to read and may not be for sensitive readers.
Books that make me think and feel are some of my favorites. March gave me books that were both. They each made me think and feel for widely different reasons. You can’t ask for a better reading month than that.