February Wrap-Up

Can you believe we’re in March already? Here’s a rundown of February:

Monthly TBR

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For the first time, I’ve managed to finish my TBR! I guess my reading speed has powered up. Reasons for my choices ranged from “book has been sitting on my desk for a long time”, a re-read (City of Bones), ARCs to reviewed, “everyone has talked about this book” to “I want it!”

My Top 4 Reads:

The One Who Ascended the Throne: A Darker Shade of Magic (VE Schwab) – Oh. My. God. I don’t read a lot of adult fantasy books but this one won my heart.

The Runner Up, the Heir: Shadowshaper (Daniel Jose Older) – You know I’m still recovering from this one. All I can say is that you should read it.

The Third is a Charming Mediator: Wayfarer (Alexandra Bracken) – A satisfying ending to a duology that I didn’t know was a duology until I finished it. I’m not crying…

The Noble Fourth Who Deserves the Praise and Loyalty from the People: On the Edge of Gone (Corinne Duyvis) – A refreshing scifi with an autistic protagonist and pulls your heart strings.


Bookish Developments

I’ve been reading more graphic novels and manga thanks to Sailor Moon.Β Meanwhile my heart is still set in the stone that is YA fantasy and scifi.

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Film/TV

Speaking of Sailor Moon, the third season (Sailor Moon S) (part 1) was released on DVD on February 8th, and yes, I binge watched it, then did a marathon. Thanks Viz and Madman for not censoring the lesbian couple Sailor Neptune and Sailor Uranus. If you didn’t know, their relationship was changed to them being cousins in the original English-dubbed version.

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Writing

While waiting for an agent who requested a full to get back to me, I spent the month revising my YA scifi/fantasy WIP that I wrote for NaNoWriMo last year. I also worked on two other WIPs – one of them is a mermaid story with a bisexual protagonist and the other is a contemporary romance inspired by that one time I was in the anime section at JB-HiFi and a cute guy…anyway, I have a feeling the story might transform into a fantasy one.


Much Anticipated Books

February ended with amazing releases The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and The Ship Beyond Time by Heidi Heilig. They are priorities on my March TBR πŸ™‚

Also the cover of Forest of a Thousand Lanterns was revealed and it looks so pretty. I want the book right now!


Diversity, Problematic Books and the Community

Again problematic books and their authors have come under scrutiny. Again most of the book community dismissed the issues others especially those who support diversity and in marginalised groups to the point that some were attacked and had to leave social media. It’s sad that this keeps happening because people are too defensive of their favs or very privileged. It’s tiring for people including myself to keep repeating ourselves on why criticism on problematic books is important. It’s exhausting and hurtful to see harmful representation over and over again.

Saying your book is problematic is not an attack on you. We do want you to do better and not hurt readers, especially if you’re writing YA. As for readers, you can like/love problematic books but just be aware of its flaws and acknowledge them when you promote the books. Some of my favourite books are problematic but I still love them. I started putting trigger warnings in my reviews. I’m still learning.

Just step back and listen when someone brings up an issue.

On the positive side, this year promises several diverse and Own Voices books. Agents and publishers such as Balzer + Bray are making the effort to lift up marginalised voices. We still have a long way to go though. Readers, keep supporting diverse/Own Voices books. Writers, keep writing your stories.


My New Month Resolutions

  • Maybe lower the number of books on my March TBR? Those books aren’t going anywhere anytime soon…unless they’ve become sentient
  • Drink less tea and use another mug besides Hedwig?
  • Take my fangirling over Ezra Miller down a notch?

 

img_6097Til next time,

Natalia xoxo

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4 thoughts on “February Wrap-Up

  1. thebookcorps says:

    It’s so disheartening when people get so defensive over a fave author and refuse to see the problematic nature of their work/remarks. You’re totally right that more people need to understand it’s not an attack on them. We need authors to be better than this, but like you, I’m sick of having the conversation with people who refuse to understand.

    Great reading month though!!

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