March is here! And I am probably being a little overambitious with my reading plans for this month. Because I’m already falling a tiny bit behind on some of my reading goals, and we obviously cannot have that. Seriously, though, I am not totally happy with my reading habits so far this year, and am trying to kind of reset and find a good happy medium between feeling pressure to read and not having fun and just barely reading at all.
But I do have some really great books on my list to read this month, so hopefully that helps! I am definitely excited about these:
In a Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power
I really loved Rory Power’s first two novels (Wilder Girls and Burn Our Bodies Down). They’re so dark and weird and definitely my type of horror. I don’t really a ton of YA nowadays, but will always make an exception for her. I added this one to my list as soon as it was announced, before I had any idea what it was about. And I was honestly surprised when we found out that not only is this an adult book, it’s the first in a high fantasy duology. Which is not at all what I was expecting, but I am here for it.
It’s actually been quite a while since I’ve read anything that can qualify as high fantasy, so I’m excited to read some this month. Even more so since this one is fairly short for a fantasy novel (only 432 pages, which is totally manageable). This one is actually being published next month, but I have an ARC and want to be able to review it for you guys before it’s released April 5th.
Devil in the White City by Erik Larson
I am participating again in the Buzzword Reading Challenge this year, which gives you a different buzzword each month and you have to read a book with that word in the title. This month’s theme is “location”, so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to pick up another book off my 2022 reading list, Devil in the White City (White City being Chicago). I read my first Erik Larson book last year, The Splendid and the Vile, and really enjoyed it. But I think I’m going to like this one more.
It’s a true crime book about H. H. Holmes, a serial killer in Chicago operating during the World’s Fair in 1893. He was basically the American Jack the Ripper. Fun fact: I actually did my undergrad thesis on Jack the Ripper. My true crime obsession runs deep. I also watched a documentary on H. H. Holmes last year and was fascinated, so I am very excited to read this book. We just won’t talk about the fact that I’m pretty sure I’ve owned a copy since before I started this blog.
The Black Tulip by Alexandre Dumas
Another author I read for the first time last year and really enjoyed is Alexandre Dumas. I honestly was not expecting to love The Count of Monte Cristo as much as I did. So while I was doing some research to see which classics I might want to read this year, I was definitely excited when I came across this one. It has the same themes as The Count of Monte Cristo, but is about a thousand pages shorter. So it’s perfect.
Also, I have also really enjoyed challenging myself to read classics by authors of color the past few years. As much as I love Jane Austen and the Mary Shelley, I want to explore more of the classics authors we don’t talk about all that much. So if you have any recommendations for other classics I should add to my list this year, leave them in the comments!
A History of My Brief Body by Billy-Ray Belcourt
The cover of this book definitely caught my attention. But I’ve also been hearing amazing things about this book. In this memoir (that I think is also partly poetry), the author discusses his experience growing up both gay and Indigenous. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading about experiences that differ from my own and learning more from other people through memoirs. Last month, I read I’m Afraid of Men, which is a brilliant memoir by trans author Vivek Shraya (I have since purchased like three more of her books because I loved it so much). And I think I’m just really feeling impactful memoirs this year. So leave your suggestions in the comments if you have any you think I might enjoy!
Lonely Castle in the Mirror by Mizuki Tsujimura
For some reason, I have been very drawn to Japanese fiction lately. I read Convenience Store Woman in January and enjoyed that one (will definitely be reading more by Sayaka Murata). And I still have Before the Coffee Gets Cold on my list (my book club keeps getting postponed, and I like to wait until the last minute to read our selections so I actually remember things). But this is one I discovered recently and immediately picked up.
It’s a magical realism novel about seven students who kind of withdraw and avoid going to school and keep their distance from family and friends. Until they find a portal into another world through a glowing mirror, where they find a castle. Somewhere in that castle is a key, and whoever find the key will be granted one wish. But if they fail to leave the castle by 5pm every afternoon and go back through the mirror, they will be eaten by the keeper of the castle, the Wolf Queen. It’s giving me weird Narnia vibes and I am so looking forward to delving into this world.
Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell
Finally, we have yet another book I’ve been putting off reading. I am a little bit iffy on whether or not I’ll get to it this month. It’s been calling to me, but I’m not sure I’m in the right headspace for it at the moment. So hopefully my pseudo-slump gets better and I can return to reading whatever I want. Because I have heard amazing things about this one, and it’s absolutely up my alley.
For those of you who don’t know, I am a little bit of a Shakespeare geek (the most popular post on this blog by far is the one where I rank all of Shakespeare’s plays after I spent a couple years reading every single one). I have been to his house in Stratford-upon-Avon, I regularly annoy people with random Shakespeare facts (did you know he invented the word “eyeball”?), and I’m kind of a fangirl. But I’m also pretty excited to read more about the family he basically abandoned to go off and impress Queen Elizabeth I and write plays. Even though this book is named after his son, I’ve heard it’s mostly about his wife, so I am very intrigued.
And that’s it for March! Hopefully I can get to everything I want to read this month. I have a ton of great books just waiting in a pile by my desk for me to pick up and love, so here’s to some great spring reading!
What’s on your reading list for March?
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