Good morning and happy Saturday to you all! Today, I will be sharing all the books that I bought/received during February. There are 21 total titles here. I am pleasantly surprised with the variety and diversity of books that I ended up with with this month’s haul, and I am super eager to jump into quite a lot of these this year!
Aside from being categorised by genre, they are in no particular order. If you have read any of these books, please share with me in the comments section down below what you thought of them! I would love to hear your musings.
As always, wishing you a fantastic weekend. Happy reading and happy otakuing!
Yona of the Dawn Volume 10 by Mizuho Kusanagi
- Shōjo, Fantasy, Romance
Orange: Future by Ichigo Takano
- Shōjo, Slice-of-Life
- This manga takes place from Suwa Hiroto’s perspective, when he reunites with Naho years after completing college. The entire story is about how they met up and everything that led to them building a relationship, prior to the plot points that led to the beginning of the Orange manga series.
The Travelling Cat Chronicles by Hiro Arikawa
- #OwnVoices Japanese Literature
- Story revolves around a cat named Nana who accompanies his human companion, Satoru, as he embarks on a small journey to visit three of his friends with the backdrop of changing seasons. The book is about friendship, solitude, and the notion of give and take.
After the Banquet by Yukio Mishima
- #OwnVoices Japanese Literature
- The book is a story about the nature of political and domestic warfare surrounding a middle-aged woman named Kazu. For years she has run a popular restaurant. But then she falls in love with one of her clients who is a retired politician. She renounces her business to get married. Over time, she gets restless and decides to resurrect her husband’s political career. But in doing so she places herself in a position where she must choose between her marriage and her wild vitality.
The Great Passage by Shion Miura
- #OwnVoices Japanese Literature
- Kohē Araki has spent most of his life dedicated to the written word by creating dictionaries at Gembu Books. But after working there for 37 years, the time for his retirement arrives. As he prepares for retirement, he discovers a kindred spirit in Mitsuya Majime, a young, dishevelled boy with a penchant for collecting antiquities and a background in linguistics. Swiping Mitsuya from the sale’s department, Kohē trains the young man to replace him.
Filipino Ghost Stories by Alex G. Paman
- #OwnVoices Filipino Literature
- A collection of ghostly and supernatural stories that are typically passed down from one generation to another within Filipino families. This collection shares the stories that have been told in the author’s family for generations.
Once on a Moonless Night by Dai Sijie
- #OwnVoices Chinese Literature, Historical Fiction
- The story alternates between two separate time periods. The first is the 1930s when China’s last emperor, who has been exiled to Manchuria, discovers a silk scroll that is 900 years old and believed to have been inscribed by the Buddha himself. After illegally selling it to a French linguist named Paul d’Ampere, the linguist becomes imprisoned and the scroll is lost. The second is the 1970s where an unnamed college student from the West, charmed by a young man’s tales of the scroll, goes on an emotional journey that will lead her to the long-lost scroll.
Salt Houses by Hala Alyan
- #OwnVoices Palestinian Literature
- On the eve of her daughter, Alia’s, wedding, Salma reads the girl’s future in a cup of coffee dregs. She sees an unsettled life for Alia and her children, but she also sees travel and luck. While she chooses to keep her predictions to herself that day, they will all soon come to pass when the family is uprooted in the wake of the Six-Day War of 1967. The family will be tested through very difficult trials and tribulations that will take them through Saddam Hussain’s invasion of Kuwait in 1990.
Science-Fiction & Fantasy:
All Systems Red (The Muderbot Diaries #1) by Martha Wells
- Hard Science-Fiction, Space Opera
- The book is about an android with murderous intentions that simply wants to discover who it is outside of being an android, and gets the opportunity to do so when a mission on a distant planet ends up going terribly awry.
Traitor’s Blade (The Greatcoats #1) by Sebastien de Castell
- Epic High Fantasy
- In the simplest terms, the story revolves around a group of men called Greatcoats who are an elite corps of 144 men and women whose mission is to travel the land and uphold the King’s Law. But then the king dies and the Greatcoats are disbanded. The first instalment in a series, Traitor’s Blade is about a disgraced swordsman, formerly of the Greatcoats, who struggles to redeem himself in the midst of a royal conspiracy.
Twelve Kings of Sharakhai (The Song of the Shattered Lands #1) by Bradley P. Beaulieu
- Sword & Sorcery, Fantasy
- Sharakhai, the great city of the desert, centre of commerce and culture, has been ruled from time immemorial by twelve kings — cruel, ruthless, powerful, and immortal. With their army of Silver Spears, their elite company of Blade Maidens and their holy defenders, the terrifying asirim, the Kings uphold their positions as undisputed, invincible lords of the desert. There is no hope of freedom for any under their rule. Or so it seems, until Çeda, a brave young woman from the west end slums, defies the Kings’ laws by going outside on the holy night of Beht Zha’ir. What she learns that night sets her on a path that winds through both the terrible truths of the Kings’ mysterious history and the hidden riddles of her own heritage.
Battle Mage (Age of Darkness #1) by Stephen Aryan
- Epic Fantasy
- The first in a series follows three different characters. Balfruss who is a battlemage that has sworn to fight and die for a country that fears his kind. Vargus who is a common soldier that fights with a blade. Lastly, there is Talandra who is a princess and spymaster. All three of them fight in an epic war that is filled with magic and mayhem.
The Philosopher’s Flight by Tom Miller
- The Philosopher’s Flight is an epic historical fantasy set in a World War I era America where magic and science blend together to create a single entity. Eighteen-year-old Robert Weekes is a practitioner of empirical philosophy—an arcane, female-dominated branch of science used to summon the wind, shape clouds of smoke, heal the injured, and even fly. When a deadly accident puts his philosophical abilities to the test, Robert rises to the occasion and wins a scholarship to study at Radcliffe College, an all-women’s school. At Radcliffe, Robert hones his skills and strives to win the respect of his classmates, a host of formidable, unruly women.
- This was one of my Book of the Month picks for February.
Mary Called Magdalene by Margaret George
- Israel, 1st century CE
- The book is a re-creation of Mary Magdalene’s life story, following her as she grows from a girl into a woman, joins the circle of Jesus’s disciples, and comes to grips with the divine.
The Girl from Oto by Amy Maroney
- Scotland and Spain, modern times & 16th century
- The story follows two separate time periods and two different women. The first takes place during present day and is about an art historian named Zari Durrell. After getting an elite position in Scotland researching the life and work of artist Cornelia van der Zee, she decodes a hidden message as belonging to a mysterious artist named Mira. Meanwhile in the 16th century, we meet Mira. Upon being orphaned, she was taken in by a convent, who looks to protect her identity and origins. Mira was given an education usually only reserved for men, including training in arts. But then one day her past comes back to face her and she learns of her devastating roots.
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent
- Iceland, early 19th century
- The narrative follows a woman named Agnes Magnúsdóttir (Mak-nūsd-aw-htir) who is charged with committing the brutal murder of two men. As punishment, she is removed to the farthest corner of northern Iceland where she will await her execution. Mortified with the notion of housing a dangerous criminal, the folks charged with housing Agnes avoid her as much as possible. Only a priest known as Tóti who is chosen to be her spiritual guardian, looks to understand Agnes. As the winter seasons passes, the farmer’s wife and daughters slowly begin to see a different side to Agnes, one that shows them a whole new perspective about the crimes that Agnes is accused of committing.
The Broken Girls by Simone St. James
- Vermont, 1950 & 2014
- Another book that follows two separate time periods and two different perspectives, this one is more of a supernatural tale. Vermont 1950: Idlewild Hall is a boarding house specifically for girls who are thought to be “trouble-makers,” and rumour has it that it is haunted as well. Four roommates build a new friendship and bond over their fears, when one of them suddenly goes missing. Moving to 2014, we follow a journalist named Fiona, who cannot stop thinking about her sister’s death that occurred 20 years ago. Even though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of the murder, Fiona cannot shake the feeling that things are not as simple as they appeared. Then during Idlewild’s renovation, a shocking revelation bring to light some very disturbing secrets that eventually help Fiona learn of what truly happened the night her sister died.
- This was my second Book of the Month pick for February. It releases in stores on 20-Mar.
Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama
- Personal Memoir
- The book is the account of President Obama’s journey to learn about his roots and where he came from. While in New York, a young Barack Obama learns of his father’s death. Emotionally inspired from this sudden event, he begins his odyssey to learn more about this man. First, he visits Kansas, from which re retraces the migration of his mother’s family to Hawai’i, and then finally to Kenya, where he meets the African side of his family for the first time and discovers the bitter truth of his father’s life.
Daughter of the Pirate King (Daughter of the Pirate King #1) by Tricia Levenseller
- High Fantasy, Romance
- Alosa begins a quest to obtain an ancient hidden map that will lead her to a legendary treasure trove. To receive the map, she must allow herself to be captured her enemies so that she can search their ships. The only thing standing in Alosa’s way is her captor, a clever and handsome first-mate named Riden. But she’s got wits to match, and no mere first-mate is going to stop the daughter of a pirate king.
Stalking Jack the Ripper (Stalking Jack the Ripper #1) by Kerri Maniscalco
- Historical Fiction, Mystery
- Groomed to be the perfect Victorian high-born lady, Audrey Rose Wadsworth has decided that she wants something different from her life. After the loss of her beloved mother, she is determined to understand the very nature of death, so she begins a secret apprenticeship in forensics. When she gets tasked with aiding in the new Jack the Ripper case, she becomes horrified with how close to home the case brings her. The first in a new historical fiction, mystery series.
Hunting Prince Dracula (Stalking Jack the Ripper #2) by Kerri Maniscalco
- The second book in the Stalking Jack the Ripper franchise.