Fiction feasting in October

Did October go by at record speed or what? I’m not even mad about it (even though I love October) because it means we’re SO CLOSE to Nonfiction November.

Get ready, because November is going to be a glut of nonfiction. I know some participants read fiction during the month but I am not that person. I have even forced my book club to choose a nonfiction title so I can keep going.

But before we get to all that, let’s take a look back at some of the books I read this month!

Assuming I finish the book I’m reading by month’s end, 10 of the 12 books I read this month were fiction. Three of them (Undercover Bromance, A Rogue of One’s Own and American Royals) were Romance which is very unheard of for me! Undercover Bromance was a chance to revist some of the characters from The Bromance Book Club but I would have liked more connection with the main characters from the first book. Still going to read the next one. American Royals was angsty and had a lot of feelings but it is also YA so I’m totally fine with all of that. I was warned that this book ends on a cliffhanger so I knew I’d need the next book soon. Going to make sure I have it ready after November.

And A Rogue of One’s Own! Last year I wrote about how much I loved Bringing Down the Duke and the same applies for A Rogue of One’s Own. I honestly should have bought this instead of taking it out from the library. I will need to buy the third one and if they keep being this good, I will buy every one of Evie Dunmore’s books. Keep ’em coming!

Keeping with the romance theme, I also reread The Age of Innocence for Literary Wives (come back for that post in early December) with a very different lens than I remembered the first time I read it. I also read The Queen’s Fortune by Allison Pataki, about Desiree Clary, Napoleon’s first fiance and eventual Queen of Sweden. I loved Pataki’s books about Elisabeth of Austria and I liked this one but I’m not sure that it hit me quite the same way. I had wanted to read more about Desiree since reading Desiree by Annemarie Selinko years ago. You should for sure read that one.

And then. The big guns. The books everyone has been talking about for ages. I read Anxious People by Fredrik Backman and Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi.

Fredrik Backman is a Paperback Princess MVP. I love everything he’s written. Anxious People was very different in style to his other work and it took me a minute to get into it. But when I did, the emotional payoff was worth the work. Especially right now, a book about the things that really do matter, about working together to make good things happen, it’s what I needed.

I also loved Yaa Gyasi’s debut Homegoing. It has remained on my mental list of books that I really, really loved. I loved the structure, the story, it felt so original. Transcendent Kingdom is completely different. It’s melancholy and takes on this massive theme of faith vs science. The main character kind of holds everyone, including the reader, at a distance which made it hard for me to connect with it even while I was bowled over by the writing. There’s no doubt that Gyasi can write. Transcendent Kingdom gave me a lot to think about but I’m not sure I’d classify it as a favourite.

And hands down the most intense book that I read this month was Alyssa Cole’s When No One Is Watching. If you’ve read it, let’s discuss. If you haven’t, I’m not going to say anything because I don’t even know what I read! It was WILD.

I’m working my way through J. Courtney Sullivan’s new one, Friends and Strangers and I’m already relating to it 100 different ways. I loved her book Saints for All Occasions so I’m hoping this is another winner.

A fiction feast before my nonfiction binge. What was the best book you read in October?

See you next week for Nonfiction November!

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