As promised, here is the second part of my January Wrap Up. You can go check out the first part here and without further ado let’s just straight into it.
#5: “Gone Girl” by Gillian Flynn
My initial thoughts every second page or so were “WTF is going on here?” This book really messes with your head. Not as much as the first one I read by her does though, which was “Sharp Objects” and I loved that! This was a pretty good read too and I really enjoyed it. At first I almost put it back down again after I read a few chapters because I really disliked the characters, but then – hello major plotwist and I was HOOKED. I was happy to read a book for once, where I wasn’t able to predict the big twist and see the ending coming from miles away.
This book deals with severely twisted personalities and makes you second-guess everything that you read. I’m really looking forward to picking up “Dark Places” since I really enjoyed both of Gillian Flynn’s other novels.
#6: “Solitaire” by Kelley Eskridge
This had such a good premise! Sadly the execution was not great. At times the story was really gripping, but those few instances can’t really make up for the rest of my reading experience, which was a mixture of confusion, exasperation and boredom.
In the first part we get introduced to our main girl Jackal (the names in this book are just so ridiculous! Bear, Tiger, Snow… Really?) and the world order and political aspects are explained, which went straight over my head. It all sounded very interesting, but it wasn’t properly explained in my option (I still don’t know what a freaking “web” is).
Jackal by accident kills 400 people (yeah – by accident. Another part that went straight over my head – how the hell does someone accidentally kill 400 people?), is accused of working with a terrorist group and gets sentenced to virtual solitary confinement, where you get hooked up a machine and basically get imprisoned in your mind. There is also a huge difference in time – Jackal’s sentence was six years, but in reality she was “only” hooked to the machine for ten months and it only felt like six years to her.
Now that part should have been the main focus on the book one would think, right? I mean the title is “Solitaire”. Yeah that didn’t happen. Not only was her imprisonment very quickly dealt with, it was also the most boring part for me to read. Then out of the confinement we go and straight into a whole sub-culture of “solos” and the people idolizing them and basically treating them like superstars. The girlfriend comes back (this was mostly why I was totally ecstatic about this book – great premise AND queer main character! Whop Whop! Well at least one of the two aspects was well executed…) and things start to get annoyingly sappy, which really pissed me off a bit, because I liked the initial dynamic between the two in the beginning.
All in all, it was a nice read, even though boring at times, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
#7: “Elijah’s Mermaid” by Essie Fox
This however was absolutely great! It’s been a very long time since I’ve read historical fiction (and extraordinarily well researched historical fiction at that) and I’ve really thoroughly enjoyed this one!
The characters were gripping as was the story and I couldn’t put this book down. The writing was amazing and it felt like you were right there in the book with all the characters. The atmosphere was kind of eerie and mysterious, which I absolutely loved!
The story is set in 19th century London and focuses on Pearl, who was saved as a baby from drowning in the Thames and raised in a brothel, and the twins Lily and Elijah, who were adopted by their grandfather and grew up with him in the countryside.
The only thing I couldn’t get on board with (hence not the full on 5/5) was the love story. The relationship between Elijah and Pearl to me was not very believable. It felt more like she was only being with him because he, in her eyes, saved her and gave her a life that was more convenient and enjoyable than her old one was. And Elijah treated her more like a trophy than his significant other, but other than that, I really loved this and I found it absolutely wonderful how easily I could lose myself in this beautiful story.
(Also – this is one of the most beautiful covers I’ve ever seen!!!! 😍)
So those were all the books I read in January.
I hope you have a great weekend, lovely humans!