March Wrap-Up // 2021

March By the Numbers:
  • Total Books Read: 9
  • Audiobooks: 0
  • Five Star Reads: 1
  • Goodreads Shelf: 37/125 (30%)
  • Unread Shelf: 0 (15%)
  • Nonfiction Challenge: 2/12
  • Books by BIPOC Authors: 5 (56%)
  • By Women Authors: 7 (78%)
  • Diverse Books: 5 (56%)
  • Nonfiction Reads: 2 (22%)
  • Debuts: 3 (33%)
  • Published in 2021: 5 (56%)

Favorite Book of March:

The Bad Muslim Discount by Syed M. Masood

Honorable Mentions:

  • How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House by Cherie Jones
  • The Final Revival of Opal & Nev by Dawnie Walton

For Fans of #OwnVoices Fiction:

  • * The Bad Muslim Discount by Syed M. Masood – This was the last book I read this month and I’m so glad I did! I have found myself more in a slump than out of one lately, and this book was such a refreshing story to find myself immersed in! Masood’s writing is so fresh…he tackles some heavy topics but also includes some witty banter that made this book feel different. Unfortunately, I initially passed this one over because I just don’t feel like the cover does it justice and I mistakenly took it for a rom-com (not a preferred genre), so if you find yourself judging the cover and passing it over, DON’T!!
  • * How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House by Cherie Jones – This is a story that’s becoming all-too-familiar: a tropical getaway that attracts white tourists but does not offer the same beauty and relaxation to its locals. Life is tough for them as they experience extreme poverty, violence, and abuse. Throughout the book, Jones pays incredible attention to the details and proves, once again, that there are layers of complexity to each of us as human beings. Those layers develop us into the people we become – good and bad – and help explain some of our motivating factors.
  • * The Final Revival of Opal & Nev by Dawnie Walton – This book has all the Daisy Jones and The Six vibes, but it also offers a totally fresh story. Walton tackles the timely issues regarding racism and sexism in a classy way and helps the readers realize that while we’ve come a long ways in race relations, we also still have an incredibly long ways to still go. About half way through, the story really started to drag and the interviews seemed unnecessaily long without adding any real value; otherwise, this would have been a five-star read for me!

For Fans of Science Fiction:

  • In the Quick by Kate Hope Day – I wanted to like this book more than I did. There were some strong points – strong female protagonist, an interesting plot idea, and great writing – but overall, it felt unfinished. It does not wrap up tidy by the end, so if that bothers you, this book is not for you! This was the second book I’ve read by Day, and I liked this one more than I did her debut, but neither of these experiences leave me wanting to pick up her next book.

For Fans of YA:

  • Something Happened to Ali Greenleaf by Haley Krischer – Trigger warnings abound for this novel, but the topics dealt with felt timely and important. As a mother of a teenage children, I am always interested to understand more perspectives and issues surrounding this age group. This book is heavy, but also gives hope through the secondary themes of friendship and loyalty.

For Fans of Historical Fiction:

  • Libertie by Kaitlyn Greenidge – This book had a lot of promise, but for me, it started off strong but quickly slowed way down and became harder and harder for me to want to pick up. I wanted to learn more about the first Black woman physician, but the way Greenidge portrayed Cathy really turned me off. I understand why she came across as angry and aggressive, but unfortunately, it also made me not care about her. Considering she’s a significant part of the book, this added to my ambivalence towards the story as a whole.

For Fans of Nonfiction:

  • No Visible Bruises: What We Don’t Know About Domestic Violence Can Kill Us by Rachel Louise Snyder – I was never really aware how little data there is about domestic violence. Thank goodness for the new awareness surrounding this topic as it has led to some hopeful implementation in many communities. In turn, those communities have seen a successful decline in domestic violence.
  • Mediocre: The Dangerous Legacy of White Male America by Ijeoma Oluo – The history presented in this book was eye-opening and fascinating! I learned a lot and made notes of things I want to continue to learn more about. Oluo is a phenomenal writer and I really appreciated how she melded modern day examples with her historical examples to emphasis her points. There were some points she addressed that I vehemently disagreed with. While I can’t say if it’s because of my privilege, my upbringing, or a combination of those and other things, there were just some parts and examples that didn’t sit well with me. However, I’m on this antiracist journey on purpose and I’m very open to changing my mind as I continue to learn, grow, and change. This is a book I’m anxious to reread in order to absorb more information, and I’ll be curious to see if it sits differently after another read through.

For Fans of Dystopian Novels That Hit a Little Too Close To Home:

  • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley – Huxley imagines what the world would look like if we lost our individualism and had all of our cares and concerns taken for us. Would it be the utopia we imagine it would be? This book was written almost a century ago, but oddly feels very modern. It was the perfect book to read admist the current political and COVID environments.
(Debuts denoted by *)

Unread Shelf Update:

I added 6 books to my shelves last month, so as of the end of February, the total number of physical books on my shelves is: 242

If you’d like to participate in the Unread Shelf Project, head over to Whitney’s blog for more information!

March Posts:

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