Welcome to my super belated reading wrap-up for November! I had an excellent month for reading comics as I was able to blow through quite a few volumes; something I haven’t done in long time. Another neat thing about November is that most of the books read were rather enjoyable with ratings of four or higher. All in all, November was just the kind of month I needed towards the end of the year.
Everything shall be divided up via genres. In addition to the title and author, I’ll include a brief synopsis, any relevant subgenres, and a link to reviews that have been shared, or a day for upcoming reviews to keep an eye out for.
American Vampire Volumes 3, 4, & 5 by Scott Snyder & Rafael Albuquerque
The series a supernatural fantasy, horror one about a new breed of vampires that are much stronger than their traditional counterparts with some nifty, new invulnerabilities, and follows two people of the breed named Skinner Sweet and Pearl. This has some of the best writing that I have encountered in the medium, with glorious artwork that highly complements the narrative. I cannot recommend this enough to fans of the genre. For more information, check out my full, spoiler-free review for the first two volumes. 4.5/5. 4/5. 4/.5.
A Study in Emerald by Neil Gaiman & Rafael Albuquerque
A Study in Emerald is a Victorian, Sherlockian graphic novel that follows two Baker Street investigators, The Detective and The Major, who are approached one evening with a query for an utterly cosmic sort of murder investigation. This entire thing was absolutely brilliant from the art to the world-building to the lore. Please, check out my spoiler-free review for more info. If you want a stand-alone, dark fantasy experience than look no farther. 5/5.
Heavy Vinyl: Riot on the Radio by Carly Usdin and Nina Vakueva
This is a contemporary, LGBTQIA+ graphic novel that follows seventeen-year-old Chris who recently began working at her local record store, Vinyl Destination. When the lead singer of a band that is scheduled to perform at the store goes missing, Chris very quickly learns that her music-loving colleagues have a secret. There is such amazing diverse representations with a 90s inspired ambiance and a feel-good, female empowering story. My review goes into more detail, but if you’re in the market for a positive and uplifting read, try this one. 4.25/5.
Record of a Night Too Brief by Hiromi Kawakami
This is an #OwnVoices Japanese collection of two magical realism short stories written by an author that I admire so much. However, the translation is so godawfully terrible that I could not make headway with it, and because of the poor translation, I can’t recommend this at all, which makes me sad because it was one of my anticipated reads. DNF.
Picking Bones from Ash by Marie Mutsuki Mockett
This is an #OwnVoices Japanese-American historical fiction narrative that follows three women from two different perspectives, specifically where diaspora and the post-war exploration of female gender roles are concerned. While the book was enlightening and pleasant for what it is, the shortcomings in it made it a bit of a disappointment towards the end. My spoiler-free review for it can be found here. 3/5.
The Good Daughter by Karin Slaughter
This is a psychological crime thriller about a woman who must learn to survive decades later following one of the most traumatising events of her life. When she has another violent face-off as an adult, all of her trauma and baggage comes rumbling back to slap her in the face. However, she never expected that the new incident would be so close to home. The book was exceptionally riveting and meticulously raw and candid. My whole review can be viewed tomorrow, but if you’re a fan of the genre and haven’t read this, you should. Please note that there are legit triggers for everything in this book, and I mean everything. 5/5.
The Cat Who Ate Danish Modern (The Cat Who… #2) by Lilian Jackson Braun
The second instalment in the cosy mystery series revolves around Jim and his cat Koko investigating the murder of a well-known interior decorator. While it wasn’t quite as good as the first book, it was still cute and a fun, quick read. I shall be posting a review for the book on Wednesday. If you like cosy mysteries and aren’t put-off by ones that may be a tad bit outdated, then definitely read The Cat Who series. 3/5.
Killing Gravity (Voidwitch Saga #1) by Corey J. White
This is the first instalment in a space opera, galactic empire novella series about a girl named Mars Xi who is on the run from a very dark and traumatising past. But when they catch up to her, she can either face them and risk the lives of others or keep running into the shadows. What a marvellously written book! It has everything I could ever ask for in a first book of a sci-fi series. Read my gushing review for more information. If you like sci-fi, galactic narratives then look no further than Voidwitch Saga.4.25/5.
Void Black Shadow (Voidwitch Saga #2) by Corey J. White
A brilliant follow-up to its predecessor that gives more dimension to the narrative, if not the main character, at least not as much as I’d hoped. The action is non-stop and the brutality is turned all the way up. The second book is even better than the first one. My full, non-spoilery review for it shall be up on Thursday. 4.5/5.
City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab
This middle-grade, supernatural fantasy novel is about a young girl named Cassie who can see ghosts. She joins her parents, along with the ethereal best friend, when they go paranormal hunting in Edinburgh for a reality TV series, where she learns that not all ghosts are friendly. I wanted to like this so much, but there was no fucking plot to it and that was its biggest drawback. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the only thing that irked me. You can read my non-spoilery review to see where it needed improvement. 2.5/5.
Okay, that does it for this month’s wrap-up! Please, let me know in the comments section if you have read any of the books mentioned here, or if any of them have caught your fancy! I’d love to hear from you.