What I Read in April | 2021
April has been a much quieter reading month with only 4 books read. However, I am pleased to say that the 4 I did read were worth picking up! Here’s what has been on my bookshelf in April.
When Sparks Fly by Kristen Zimmer | eARC
Read the full synopsis here.
I actually read this one last month, but seeing as it was only just released on 28 April, I thought I would share it here.
This was a really lovely read. Britton grew up in the care system and is less than a year away from an adulthood of freedom once she graduates high school. Her (hopefully) final foster placement is the Cahills. The only hiccup is her foster sister Avery. She’s used to being placed with families that hate her, abuse her and treat her like the family babysitter, but she’s not used to being so insanely attracted to them. Things get even more complicated when it seems those feelings are mutual.
If I’m honest, this was a pretty simple a+b=c book, but do you know what. I was fine with that. I absolutely fell in love with Britton and genuinely wanted her to be ok. Both Avery and Britton are damaged by their past, and you are willing everything to work out for them.
My one criticism of When Sparks Fly is that it doesn’t quite seem to know who its target audience is. At times it feels very YA with its tone, pace and content. However, with a sex scene that is 18+, it seems to jar a little with the tone of the rest of the book. Don’t get me wrong, I love a little heat in a novel, but it didn’t seem to fit with the rest of the book.
That being said I loved Britton as a character and enjoyed getting to know the different layers of Avery.
We Could be Heroes by Mike Chen | eARC
Full synopsis here.
Any book that thanks Bowie in the acknowledgements and quotes him in the title is always going to be a winner for me, and We Could Be Heroes lived up to that expectation.
Zoe and Jamie wake up in an apartment they don’t know with no memory of who they are. What they do seem to have though is extraordinary powers. One goes down the route of villain and the other the route of superhero. They should be destined to be mortal enemies, but it seems that instead they are destined to be friends. I absolutely love this about We Could Be Heroes as it doesn’t become a book about love or good vs evil (though of course that crops up once or twice!) but ultimately this becomes a book with friendship at its core and I just love love LOVE that.
I’ve read quite a few superhero novels in my time and sadly many (many!) of them don’t get past fan fiction level, but I am so happy to say that this one bucks the trend and is a lot of fun to read. Both Zoe and Jamie are fully flushed out characters complete with their own flaws. It does get a bit meh in the middle after starting strong, but Zoe and Jamie are enough to pull you through and keep you turning page after page.
You will need to enter this book and suspend disbelief but that’s part of the fun as you enter the world of superheroes. It could be because my son is currently superhero obsessed so I am already fully immersed in that world right now, but I have a real soft spot for this book and had a lot of fun reading it. So, if you like a bit of superhero action in your literature then this one is worth picking up.
Plus, just look at that cover. If that doesn’t give you the “pick me up and read me” feels I don’t know what will.
The Whole Truth by Cara Hunter | eARC
Full synopsis here.
This is the 5th book in the DI Fawley series and although I have read two others in the series (Close To Home and All The Rage) I can’t remember all the details of the characters. So, I really appreciated the “Previously—- in the Fawley Files” opening to The Whole Truth. It is just a short summary of the main characters in DI Fawley’s team (including the man himself) which just helps to provide a little bit of context of the people I am going to meet. This is the first time I’ve come across something like this in a series and it’s a brilliant idea. Something I really appreciated being able to read to get me in the mood.
Although I’m a big Cara Hunter fan though, I was a little disappointed by The Whole Truth. Hunter’s usual brilliant writing style and pace is still there, and her attention to detail as well as her ability to create an entire team that is three dimensional is a pleasure to read. However, this one just felt a little more stalled.
Not helped by the fact that although the secondary storyline around Fawley and the was nicely interwoven, I absolutely hated the main story involving a professor and an allegation of sexual assault made against her by a male student. You could argue that this book acts as a satirical reflection of how a strong woman’s brilliance is belittled by how she chooses to dress, whereas for me it simply comes across as the career of strong brilliant woman being destroyed because of how she dresses. It is realistic? Yes. But is still pissed me off non the less. And yes, I know that is probably Hunter’s point when she wrote the story line.
All in all, not my favourite Cara Hunter novel, but still a solid read.
Spells & Ashes by Kim Richardson
Full synopsis here.
You know when you fancy a really quick and easy read that is a lot of fun? Well, that’s exactly what I got with Spells & Ashes. Sam Beaumont is a dark witch. She is also a paranormal investigator and when a human is killed in a demon ritual, she sets up to hunt down the killer.
With a litter help from a summoned demon, a drunk angel and a angel-born she has the hots for, Sam and her crow familiar called Poe set out to save the world.
With fun characters and a face paced story, Spells & Ashes was a fun way to spend a few hours. I’m not in a huge rush to finish the series, but I have no doubt that I will get to them at some point.
Last Night by Mhairi McFarlane
Full synopsis here.
For my birthday last month. I was gifted a subscription from the Rare Birds Book Club. Last Night by Mhairi McFarlane was my April book and I loved it!
It follows Eve and her friends Justin, Susie and Ed who have all been friends since they were kids. Eve has a secret though; she’s been in love with Ed since they were 18 and now, he’s getting married to someone else. Then, something happens which changes everything forever.
Heart breaking is some places and funny in others, this is a wonderful tale of friendship and loss. Beautifully written with a protagonist who is relatable, it tackles some difficult topics with lightness, humour and respect. I like that it doesn’t shy away from how complicated grief can be.
And that’s it! I told you it was a quieter reading month for me.
- Books read this month: 4
- Total books read in 2021: 35
- Books abandoned in 2021: 0
As you can probably tell, I’m always looking for new books. Especially at the moment. Are there any that you would recommend?
DISCLOSURE: some of these books have been gifted to me by the publishers via NetGalley in return for my honest opinion. These books are clearly marked as an eARC (electronic Advanced Readers Copy). I am not paid to do this, I do it because I love to read. The decision to include them on this blog is my own and I am under no obligation to do so.
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