February TBR

February for me is kind of notorious for reading very little so I am not going to be overly ambitious with a very large TBR. I decided maybe just stick to 5 books to prioritise and then I can keep going if I feel the need with anything that catches my eye.

Honey & Spice by Bolu Babalola

Carrie Soto is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid

The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

The Burning Girls by C.J. Tudor

The Hacienda by Isabel Cañas

January Wrap Up

I had a fantastic reading month! The inclusion of more audio books has really changed the game for me and I have been able to squeeze so many more reads in that I otherwise wouldn’t of been able to. I can’t wait to continue on with this momentum for the rest of 2023!

When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole⭐️4/5 stars

Kiss Her Once for Me by Alison Cochrun ⭐️4/5 stars

House of Hunger by Alexis Henderson⭐️4/5 stars

Galatea by Madeline Miller⭐️3/5 stars

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas⭐️5/5 stars

Near the Bone by Christina Henry⭐️4/5 stars

Magic, Lies and Deadly Pies by Misha Popp⭐️4/5 stars

The Honeys by Ryan La Sala⭐️3/5 stars

Heart of the Sun Warrior by Sue Lynn Tan⭐️3/5 stars

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien – 3/5 stars

Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q Sutanto⭐️4/5 stars

You Had Me at Hola by Alexis Daria⭐️4/5 stars

The Night Swim by Megan Goldin⭐️4/5 stars

The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman⭐️2/5 stars

Lost in the Moment and Found by Seanan McGuire⭐️4/5 stars

Emily Wilde’s Encyclopaedia of Faeries by Heather Fawcett⭐️4/5 stars

Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney⭐️4/5 stars

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The Night Swim Review

*SOME SPOILERY BITS*

After the first season of her true crime podcast became an overnight sensation and set an innocent man free, Rachel Krall is now a household name―and the last hope for thousands of people seeking justice. But she’s used to being recognized for her voice, not her face. Which makes it all the more unsettling when she finds a note on her car windshield, addressed to her, begging for help. The small town of Neapolis is being torn apart by a devastating rape trial. The town’s golden boy, a swimmer destined for Olympic greatness, has been accused of raping a high school student, the beloved granddaughter of the police chief. Under pressure to make Season Three a success, Rachel throws herself into interviewing and investigating―but the mysterious letters keep showing up in unexpected places.

I liked Rachel as our main character. The whole premise of the podcast and coming from being an investigative journalist was compelling and intriguing. I loved following on as she uncovers what happens during this highly publicized and talked about rape trial as well as figuring out what really happened to Jenny.

Hannah I was sort of questioning her intentions throughout the course of the plot. I just didn’t understand why she didn’t just meet up with Rachel and explain everything to her face. Leaving the letters though did add a layer of mystery to the plot but they felt a little bit sinister to me. It just always felt like she was being too secretive and wasn’t telling the whole story so it made me doubt her as a character.

As far as the trial aspect of the book goes I was a bit ambivalent towards it, it’s just never a good feeling to see how rape victims are treating throughout. Of course you always want justice to prevail but it doesn’t always end up happening that way and it very nearly happens in this book. Knowing that no one really won at the end of the day doesn’t give me any satisfaction as a reader but it is very realistic.

There was a lot of quite graphic scenes and heavy topics that are included in this book though the format with the shorter chapters and the inclusion of the podcast elements did make it quite a fast read. I can’t say that I enjoyed what I was reading but the way the two plotlines converged and how the reveals are exposed did make keep me engaged and eager to see how the ending will play out.

⭐️4/5 stars this was brutal, violent and just sad