Today I’m going to share with you my TBR and wrap up for Reading Rush. The reason why I didn’t post any announcement as with everyone else is because it’s a very impulsive decision 😂 I wasn’t planning on joining, but with everyone posting their TBRs and all the booktubers doing reading vlogs, I have FOMO and ended up joining in on the fun 📚
For those of you who doesn’t know, the Reading Rush is a week-long readathon that commenced on July 20th-26th. There are 7 prompts for the reading challenge, as well as instagram and youtube challenges. You can find more information about the readathons and the challenges on their official website here. This would be my first time in a while joining a readathon as well as my first time doing Reading Rush. I managed to finish 5 out of 7 prompts they have, which is surprisingly good! 🙌 I didn’t have a set of TBR so everything I read is basically mood reading, which maybe also why I was quite successful 🤷♀️
I have since made aware of what happened during liveshow and I have to say, I’m really disappointed. First of all, it seems like that Such A Fun Age wasn’t as promoted as other aspect of the readathon even though it’s a group book- I didn’t know there was a group book for this. Second, the fact that the hosts didn’t even finish the book and laugh about it and instead do random Q&A was upsetting, because it showed how little they cared. They could’ve postpone the liveshow or handle the situation better, but they didn’t seem to prepare for it. I understand creating an event can be tiring and time-consuming, but that’s not an excuse. A little communication with participants would be great, because it’s better than suddenly saying you didn’t read it when many people already went out to buy and finish the book. So yeah, I’m really sad to see how the situation turned out especially since this is my first time and I did have a great time. But in the end the hosts disappointed me and many others and as such, I would not be participating in future Reading Rush. I will still post this since I want to share my experience and review the books I’ve read, but this is not an endorsement for the event.
In the order of reading, these are the books I’ve finished and the prompts they fulfilled:
(6) Genre you want to read more → LIZARD’S TALE by Weng Wai Chan
I couldn’t really read 100% of the story since my copy is missing all the first page of the chapter, but overall, this is such a wonderful story! It is set in the 1940s, before Japanese forces invade Japan. Our main character, Lizard, was told to stole something he knew nothing about but ended up being sucked into an exciting world of espionage with his friend, Lili.
Reading this book make me crave for curry puffs, but it also made me miss Singapore. Obviously it was different from what it was in the 1940s, but the smell of food and the multicultural environment was comforting. The author’s writing is very immersive, it transported you to the era and places. Despite the threat of war looming and the gravity of the situation, the writing manages to convey the innocence of the children at the heart of this book. They understand it is /serious stuff/ but the way they act and talk are just very realistic for children.
The plot is really good and the actions are thrilling, but what makes the book shines is the main character, Lizard and Lili. Their friendship (and crush? lol) really strong and cute, they complement each other. Both of them are very resourceful and won’t hesitate to help each other. Maybe it’s the writing, but I also love the minor characters such as Roshan and Brylcreem. The ending was really wistful and bittersweet, but it works with the story. I am really hoping for a sequel where everyone finds each other again.
While the story may seem fictional, at the end of the book the author explained how the characters and locations are inspired by real events in WWII. Due to the setting, this book also discussed about war, imperialism, as well as xenophobia, which was told through Lizard’s experiences as half-British, half-Chinese as well as Georgina’s treatment of him. We also saw discussed sexism in how Lili was treated and overlooked in many instances.
Overall, Lizard’s Tale is a vibrant and adventurous tale that explore war through the eyes of children. The writing is gorgeous and the description of sight, smell and sound transported you to the story. The characters are adorable and resourceful, which makes every pages a delight to read.
(4) First book you touch → LOVE FOR IMPERFECT THINGS by Haenim Sunim
This is such a calming and peaceful book to read, especially against the stark chaos of the world outside. I couldn’t review this book since it definitely impact everyone differently, but I love the quiet and introspective tone of this book. How the world is imperfect and so are we, but we can start by accepting our own imperfections by looking deep inside ourselves. And how by looking inside, we could began to see how everyone has their own imperfections and insecurity and it could be a basis for us to empathize and build a better relationships. I especially love the chapters on relationship, but my least favorite would probably the chapter about depression. Overall, this book felt really nice and it’s also accompanied with gorgeous colorful illustrations.
(2) Book that starts with “the” and (7) takes place on different continent – THE WICKED KING by Holly Black
I’ve seen everyone and their friends raving about this book; apparently this is the best book in the series?? And I sure like this book better than THE CRUEL PRINCE, but I wasn’t necessarily blown away by it.
I started this one right after I finished Lizard’s Tale, so the scheming and darkness in this book is very contrasting with the lightness and innocence of Lizard’s Tale. It took a while for me to adjust, but once I did, I got immersed. I find the pacing is much faster, there’s no one dull moment with betrayals and plots lurking in every corners. We also got to see more of the world, I love that we got a chance to visit the Undersea despite the circumstances.
I still don’t ship Jude and Cardan as I couldn’t see the appeal and it’s 100% nor healthy, with them manipulating and hating each other, but I do admit that the tension between the 2 is just 🔥🔥🔥 As an individual, I love how realistic it is in terms of Jude’s fears of holding power on her own, considering her meteoric rise and enemies. She sure grew a lot from the girl we first met in the Cruel Prince. But maybe not so much, with how she fell for Tarryn again 🙃 I always love “pretend to be incompetence but actually VERY competent ™” trope, so I’m happy to find it here.
Someone should really just do away with Locke tbh.
The ending wasn’t really shocking for me since I already got spoiled, but I’m excited to read the Queen of Nothing!
(1) Book with a cover that match your birth stone – THE QUEEN OF NOTHING by Holly Black
I plan on reading only the 3 book above but I realize a) I still have time b) the cover has some rubies on it (I was born in July) and c) I love the world and really would like to go back.
I think I’m in the minority here when I say I enjoyed this book and I think it’s the best in the series. I love the dedication to Leigh Bardugo (authors friendships are always my favorite to read! 🥰) and the prologue reveals A LOT, it made me go “oh” and immediately understand Cardan more and why they’re so attracted to each other. The pacing was really solid, we got actions right from the first few chapters even in the mortal world. The plot just keeps going, there’s just no stopping from all the scheming and spying and war, but the way it swells and recedes is just perfect and the ending was really beautiful.
I’m so happy to see the family came together, at least Jude can have one less problem going on. And I love seeing her as Queen of Elfhame, she’s born for the role! But my favorite thing is the romance between Jude and Cardan- yes, this book finally made me see and ship them. I notice now that her time Undersea has really become a turning point for their relationship, it’s where Cardan turned and actually showed Jude he cares. But it is in this book that Jude started to show her feelings to Cardan and we see how it makes her more open to her friends and family. Basically, they became much more open and vulnerable with each other and their inner circle 🥺💕 The tension and the amount of trust and yearning they have is just (✿◕‿◕✿)
Overall, I really enjoyed this series and highly recommend it for people who are looking to read about feys. It’s exactly what I wanted: dark and cruel, full of political intrigue and clever schemes. Inhuman and full of trickery, but also more human than they thought. Well developed characters and engaging plot. I’m really happy to end this month with such an amazing book!
(3) A book inspired by movie I’ve seen
I haven’t been watching a lot of movies and none of the books I have inspired me for this prompt so I skip it.
(5) Read a book outside your house
For obvious reasons. I can read on the balcony but I ended up running out of time by the point I think about it haha.
Did you join the Reading Rush? How did you do? If you didn’t, what were the books you read last week?