I’m pretty sure March was actually two months in one. You can’t convince me otherwise. I’ve spent the month studying to get my life insurance license, and I’m pretty sure my brain is fried. I only know life insurance terms now. Thankfully, my course ends today, so next month I can get back to reading.
I really enjoyed what I read in March it just took me longer to read than normal. Plus, I couldn’t settle on one book. I kept jumping back and forth. But anyhow let’s get to my March 2022 wrap up
Elantris was the capital of Arelon: gigantic, beautiful, literally radiant, filled with benevolent beings who used their powerful magical abilities for the benefit of all. Yet each of these demigods was once an ordinary person until touched by the mysterious transforming power of the Shaod. Ten years ago, without warning, the magic failed. Elantrians became wizened, leper-like, powerless creatures, and Elantris itself dark, filthy, and crumbling.
Arelon’s new capital, Kae, crouches in the shadow of Elantris. Princess Sarene of Teod arrives for a marriage of state with Crown Prince Raoden, hoping — based on their correspondence — to also find love. She finds instead that Raoden has died and she is considered his widow. Both Teod and Arelon are under threat as the last remaining holdouts against the imperial ambitions of the ruthless religious fanatics of Fjordell. So Sarene decides to use her new status to counter the machinations of Hrathen, a Fjordell high priest who has come to Kae to convert Arelon and claim it for his emperor and his god.
But neither Sarene nor Hrathen suspect the truth about Prince Raoden. Stricken by the same curse that ruined Elantris, Raoden was secretly exiled by his father to the dark city. His struggle to help the wretches trapped there begins a series of events that will bring hope to Arelon, and perhaps reveal the secret of Elantris itself.
The Great Gatsby
Nick Carraway’s mysterious neighbor Gatsby gazes across the dark bay at a distant green light. As the summer unfolds, Nick is drawn into Gatsby’s world of luxury cars, speedboats and extravagant parties. But the more he hears about Gatsby – even from what Gatsby himself tells him – the less he is sure of the truth. Did Gatsby really go to Oxford University? Was he a hero in the war? Did he once kill a man? Nick recalls how he came to know Gatsby. He recounts how he enters the world of his cousin Daisy and her wealthy husband Tom. But does their money make them any happier? How do everybody’s stories connect? Will you come to know the real Gatsby after reading Nick’s account of that fateful summer?
My Full Review: https://wildwoodreads.com/2022/03/28/the-great-gatsby-review/
The Arch Emulator and the Seven Keys
In Antarctica, the cold part, Belle Vail does not know she is an emulator. Not yet. Instead this callused deep core driller is too busy falling in love in the most romantic spot on earth. They will find her here though. It is the first place they look.
They are The Smiths, a faction started 900 years ago by Saint Malachy of Ireland when he predicted Pope Francis would be the last pope. Malachy also foresaw the emulators and the hunt for the keys. He did not intend to unleash such malevolence.
After a famed archeologist is murdered, his daughter Cana finds a message from him. He tells her The Smiths cannot be allowed to find the seventh key. She is the daughter of a digger; she will not fail.
A little girl from the Midwest, an orphan, knows how the end will happen. And yes, they will find her too. She is orphan-tough though. She will have to be.
In 1939, archaeologists uncovered a tomb at the Northern Arizona site called Ridge Ruin. The man, bedecked in fine turquoise jewelry and intricate beadwork, was surrounded by wooden swords with handles carved into animal hooves and human hands. The Hopi workers stepped back from the grave, knowing what the Moochiwimi sticks meant. This man, buried nine-hundred years earlier, was a magician.Former television journalist Kate Butler hangs on to her investigative reporting career by writing freelance magazine articles. Her research on The Magician shows he bore some European facial characteristics and physical qualities that made him different from the people who buried him. Her quest to discover The Magician’s origin carries her back to a time when the high desert world was shattered by the birth of a volcano and into the present-day dangers of archaeological looting where black market sales of antiquities can lead to murder.
My Full Review: https://wildwoodreads.com/2022/03/16/wolf-catcher-review/
In 1927, Zora Neale Hurston went to Plateau, Alabama, just outside Mobile, to interview eighty-six-year-old Cudjo Lewis. Of the millions of men, women, and children transported from Africa to America as slaves, Cudjo was then the only person alive to tell the story of this integral part of the nation’s history. Hurston was there to record Cudjo’s firsthand account of the raid that led to his capture and bondage fifty years after the Atlantic slave trade was outlawed in the United States.
In 1931, Hurston returned to Plateau, the African-centric community three miles from Mobile founded by Cudjo and other former slaves from his ship. Spending more than three months there, she talked in depth with Cudjo about the details of his life. During those weeks, the young writer and the elderly formerly enslaved man ate peaches and watermelon that grew in the backyard and talked about Cudjo’s past–memories from his childhood in Africa, the horrors of being captured and held in a barracoon for selection by American slavers, the harrowing experience of the Middle Passage packed with more than 100 other souls aboard the Clotilda, and the years he spent in slavery until the end of the Civil War.
My Review: This was such a good audiobook. I love Zora Neale Hurston’s work to start with, and she made it feel like I actually knew Cudjo. This book was like sitting down and having a chat with a friend who knows a lot more about life than you. He’d been through so many hard things in life, but he still chose happiness. It was vulnerable and insightful. I truly enjoyed listening to this.
When a planet-destroying Delver suddenly appears in the sky of Detritus and vanishes just as suddenly, FM knows that the last free human society got lucky. Her Skyward Flight companion, Spensa, figured out how to draw this Delver away, but it won’t be so easy next time.
The forces of the Galactic Superiority will be back—and if the Defiant Defense Force can’t figure out a way to escape the planet, humanity’s destruction is only a matter of time. Spensa’s mission to infiltrate the Superiority unveiled the secret to their hyperdrives—a cytonic slug species called the Taynix. Now FM’s flightleader, Jorgen, has found a large group of Taynix hiding in the caverns far below Detritus’s surface.
FM and Jorgen must work together with the engineer Rig to awaken the mysterious alien Alanik and unlock the powers of the Taynix, or humanity will be trapped. With Spensa’s friend Minister Cuna of the Superiority stranded at the outpost of Sunreach, they need to figure out how to rescue them—or the Superiority government will be in the sole clutches of those who want to wipe out Detritus once and for all.
My Full Review: Coming Soon
The Ghost Map
It’s the summer of 1854, and London is just emerging as one of the first modern cities in the world. But lacking the infrastructure-garbage removal, clean water, sewers-necessary to support its rapidly expanding population, the city has become the perfect breeding ground for a terrifying disease no one knows how to cure. As the cholera outbreak takes hold, a physician and a local curate are spurred to action-and ultimately solve the most pressing medical riddle of their time.
In a triumph of multidisciplinary thinking, Johnson illuminates the intertwined histories of the spread of disease, the rise of cities, and the nature of scientific inquiry, offering both a riveting history and a powerful explanation of how it has shaped the world we live in.
My Full Review: I’ve really started to enjoy non-fiction, but this one didn’t exactly work for me. It relied heavily on statics that didn’t really benefit the story. Sometimes it went off on a rabbit trail and I wasn’t sure what point the author was trying to make. It just wasn’t for me.
So that’s my March 2022 wrap up. What did you read this month? Any new favorites?