English Review/Post

OWLs Wrap Up … yes, I’m super late!

Okay, I know what you’re gonna say: ‘El, was the Magical Readathon not in April?? It’s June 10th now!’

And you’re absolutely right. I am ridiculously late!

But I got here in the end and that’s what counts, right? RIGHT??

I’d also like to remind everyone that:

 

But enough with the GIFs (I finally found out how to put them in a post, so bear with me pls ^^)

I was not only in a reading slump for most of May but also in a blogging slump. We have a lot of trouble with our (ex)flatmate right now and it’ sucking all my energy out. It’s getting a little better now (not because she is any nicer or more considerate or reasonable but because I’m learning to distance myself more emotionally) and next month this whole drama will be over.

We’re not here to discuss my amazing internet abilities or my stress with my flatmate but BOOKS. And the start of my amazing wizarding career!

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First I want to say I had sooooooo much fun! I just love these Magical Readathons! They are the right amount of fun, challenging and adaptable to however much you want to read. Me being the overambitious Slytherin I am, I opted for the Alchemist because you needed all twelve OWLs for this (and also because it’s Chemistry-y and I hoped (in vain) that it would motivate me to study for my Chemistry exams)

If you want to read my OWLs TBR (why would you?) you can read that here.

To refresh your mind … these were the prompts for each exam.

OWLs - Advides Revision Topics

I probably said this in my TBR, too, but it’s definitely worth it being talked about again. Can we appreciate for a second how much work and care and love G put into this readathon? You know what I’m talking about if you’ve watched her video. The leaflet with all the careers was just … mindblowing!

Since I already lost enough time, how about we dive straight into the books I read in April!

My OWLs

Charms

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

a darker shade of magic
I started early (I could because of the Charms Extra Credit Readathon) with A Darker Shade of MAgic. And yes, this was my first time reading the series (despite the fact that I considered V.E.Schwab one of my fav authors for quite some time) and I totally understand all the love for this book! I loved Lila and Kell, their banter and I’m curious to see where everything leads.

I hope I can read book 2 either during The Book Junkie Trials or during the NEWTs in August! I can’t wait to see what they’re all up to.

4.5 Stars

 

Defence Against The Dark Arts

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

 

Red Queen
There are a lot of mixed reviews for this series. Despite that, I’ve always been interested to try it for myself. And I really enjoyed my time reading this. I’m definitely continuing with the series, even though I do understand the criticism. It’s not the most original book ever written, but I liked the characters and the world and I see potential. It’s fun and easy to read, so yeah. I’m glad I gave this a chance … also. the covers are gorgeous!
It was kinda predictable though … but oh well. And Mare is quite self-centred. that doesn’t bother me, though.

3.5 Stars

 

Muggle Studies

Ketchup Clouds by Annabel Pitcher 

Ketchup Clouds
I bought this book a couple years ago on one of my used book store sprees. Back when I’d just found a site where I could get English used books. I had heard a little bit about this and it sounded very intriguing. I lost interest though.

One of my goals this year was to read more books that had been on my shelves for a while now and since this was one of the few contemporary books I own …
And I don’t regret it! I intend to write a review for this (but .. eh, no promises) so I can properly gush about this.

It’s told through the letters a teenage girl sents to a guy on death row … because she has a dark secret as well.
I loved it from the very first sentence. It’s funny and sad and has the cutest little sister!

5 Stars

 

Arithmancy

My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows and Brodi Ashton

My Plain Jane

I haven’t read the source material, originally I wanted to before diving into this book, but I needed it for Arithmancy. I don’t really have any other books that were written by more than one author …
But I needn’t have worried. I had a lot of fun, still. (Or maybe because?)

I listened to the audiobook and had a fun time. I think I’ll check out the first one, too.

3 Stars


 

Divination

King of Thorns by Mark Lawrence

King of Thorns
I was so surprised when I read Prince of Thorns that it takes place in the future! It reads (mostly) like high fantasy/grimdark fantasy. But it takes place in our world in 3000…something. (I have no memory .. sorry) just with some magic and a loooot of death. They aren’t easy to read for me, but Jorg that little bastard certainly grew on me. There were other amazing characters as well, old and new. Great second book! Can’t wait to see how it all ends!

Also, I love the covers! They tell you exactly what you’re getting into!

4.5 Stars

 

Ancient Runes

The Surface Breaks by Louise O’Neill

The Surface BreaksI had sooo much hope for this one. I mean a Little Mermaid Retelling?? In combination with this dream of a cover?! I did have my doubts because it was advertised as a feministic retelling and those tend to be quite heavy handed in their agenda (which I don’t really like, no matter if I agree with the things said or not) aaaaaaand …

Well, this was the only book I didn’t like during this readathon. I struggled hard to finish this and didn’t like any of it. This would probably have been one of the few instances where I actually dnf a book … but since I read this for a readathon I pushed through. Also, I am generally really bad at dnf’ing anyway. Everything was soooo obvious and over the top and no subtlety whatsoever. Her dad (and basically every merman was extremely sexist, the witch (the only ‘good’ character), instead of showing she is comfortable in her body, goes on a monologue detailing how wrong everyone else is and that she has it figured out (I agree with her though) and the people on land weren’t any better. The only ‘decent’ guy watched his friend sexually harass other girls … That was so annoying to read!!

Rant over. I will probably write a review for it though because I have THOUGHTS!

1 Star

 

History of Magic

Mausefalle (Mousetrap) and Dreizehn by Tisch (Lord Edgeware Dies) both by Agatha Christie

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If you’ve read any other post by me you probably know that I’m a huge Agatha Christie fan. I just feel automatically good whenever I listen to some of her books! They are just so funny, ruthless and still comfortable AND exciting …
Since Mousetrap was very short, I decided to read two books for this challenge … just for fun. (And because I was in a Christie fever after the first one). Mousetrap is about a couple opening up a little pension and getting snowed in with a murderer.
Lord Edgeware Dies was longer and one with Poirot. I just love Poirot so much. He is so delightfully arrogant and just ahhh!

4 Stars & 5 Stars

 

Transfiguration

Mirage by Somaiya Daud

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I was hesitant to pick this up after I heard that it was Scifi and not Fantasy. I don’t know why, but I always have a harder time connecting to the book and/or characters in Scifi. And it took me about half the book to really get into Mirage. But after that, I was hooked! I loved the dynamic between the two main characters (I forgot their names) the two lookalikes. How their relationship changed throughout the book and I am waiting for the second book now because that ending was MEAN!

4 Stars

 

Astronomy

The Adventure of the Western Star by Agatha Christie

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I told you I was a fan. But this one was also because I had sooo much trouble finding a book with ‘star’ in the title that I could either listen to via Scribd or have on my shelves (and not read yet). I stumbled across this short story though and since I was already on a roll with Christie decided to listen to this. It was okay. Nothing special but fun still. It’s very short though (duh) and I definitely prefer her longer stories.

And I predicted the ending (kinda) but eh. That’s fine. It was still with Poirot though with earned it cookie points!

2.5 Stars


 

Care of Magical Creatures

Der Schwarze Thron: Die Kriegerin / Two Dark Reigns by Kendare Blake 

Two Dark ReignsThis is one of my all time favourite series and I’m dying to read book 4! Especially after how this ended! I love the writing style, the world, the characters and the fact that I really don’t know what’s to happen next!

I was overjoyed when I got the German paperback for review! (the German covers are gorgeous as well!!)

We see new parts of Fennbirn and the world around in this instalment and I loved every second. The characters we know all developed and we meet some cool new ones, too. I could gush endlessly but instead, I’ll wait till my review (well, English, the German one is already on Goodreads!)

5 Stars

 

Potions

Artificial Condition by Martha Wells

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Book Two in The Murder Bot Diaries and even though it wasn’t as good as Book One, it was still really fun. Murder Bot is just sooo relatable (it does sound strange to say that …) and I’m curious to see what might happen in the next books.

In this one Murder Bot meets ART, a Research Transport Vessel and I loved their conversations. ART is really cool and I hope we see it (?) again in the next installment.

I think it’s best to go into this series knowing as little as possible, especially book 2. But I’ll say this: there is great character development!

4 Stars

 

Herbology

In an Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire

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If you haven’t heard of The Wayward Children series … where have you been?? IT this amazing portal fantasy series, that talk about mental health themes as well as having many diverse characters. I can’t really say which one is my favourite in the series, maybe Down among the Sticks and Bones or this one! I loved the writing style in In an Absent Dream and the logic world we visit was fascinating! I’m so glad I gave this series a chance (I was hesitant at first because they’re all so short). I’m definitely gonna reread them a few times!

5 Stars

 

Those weren’t the only books I finished in April though. I also finished After the Green Withered by Kristin Ward (Review & Author Interview) and The Coincidence Authority by John Ironmonger. I read this one to my mom and we both really liked it. It’s different from what I usually read but I loved the writing style!

Both got 4 Stars.

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Originally I wanted to include the few books I read in May in this Wrap Up, too … but I think it’s already long enough. So if I get around to it, I’ll talk about them in a mash up post of May Wrap up and June TBR (both late, too … on brand!)


 

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Have you read any of these books? How did you like them? 
And did you participate in the OWLs? Which career path do you want to do in your NEWTs? 

12 thoughts on “OWLs Wrap Up … yes, I’m super late!

  1. Haha I should take a page from your book and post my super late OWL results too. It’s gathering dust in my draft folder right now. 😀 And I’m so sorry to hear about your flatmate. I personally haven’t had issues with roommates in the past, but I can imagine how emotionally draining the experience must be. All the hugs! Hopefully next month will be a much, much better one for you ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, you should!! I’d love to see what you read for the OWLs!! ☺️

      Thanks! 🤗❤️ I hope this is all over soon. I thought she was a friend but turns out I’m not or otherwise she wouldn’t have acted like that … but I’m getting better at distancing myself from that so theres that 😏

      Like

  2. Hahah better late than never 😊 I’m so glad that you still did this wrap-up! I’m super excited for Two Dark Reigns and you liking it makes me even more excited to pick it up! I’m currently reading Queens of Fennbirn and I’ll hopefully continue on to Two Dark Reigns once I finish it. Also, your mini review of The Surface Breaks reminds me a lot of a booktuber’s rant review of it (I think it was by The Common Spence), love it when bloggers and booktubers are not shy to point out problematic aspects of a book! Surface Breaks is definitely not coming anywhere near my TBR 😂

    Like

    1. Ah thanks, that’s good to hear!
      I hope you love Two Dark reigns just as much as I did!! I just really love this series. 😍

      After I read your comment I searched for the video you mentioned and oh my gosh, it’s so funny!! And he is spot on about everything! I should have watched his review before and spared myself the misery 😅
      Wise decision! 😂 I mean I can see the good intentions but it’s just … not done well, at all!!

      Liked by 1 person

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