A one-to-watch fantasy trilogy, time travel, and teen pregnancy are what you'll find in this post
I didn't read too much this month because exams basically took up the first half of November, but now I'm free from everything Uni so I should be on my way to putting up more book reviews soon. The three books I did read this month I actually all enjoyed, so here are the reviews...
The Baby by Lisa Drakeford
Published by Chicken House on 1 July 2015
The Baby opens with a party scene where a teenage girl is giving birth on her friend's bathroom floor. The best bit is she didn't even know she was pregnant. This book follows the perspectives of five people - Olivia, Ben, Jonty, Alice and Nicola, and each person has a chapter of their own. They all have their own struggles going on and it's an eye-opening realisation that you don't know everything that's going on in a person's life. One of the main themes addressed in this book is obviously teen pregnancy, and it's a refreshing and interesting take on the topic. There are other themes such as domestic violence, bullying and sexuality.
I always love multiple perspectives in books, and as this one was very short (200 pages), it was nice to have a chapter with each person's perspective. I particularly loved Alice's chapter, who is eleven years old and the younger sister of one of the older characters. I loved her voice and it was a very sweet story to read about. I don't read much from children's voices but really enjoyed that. While this is a very basic novel, I liked how it dealt with several topics and as I said before, showed that you don't know what is going on in everyone's minds, family life, and what's happened in their past.
The Last Beginning by Lauren James*
Published by Walker Books on 1 October 2016
This is the second and final book of Lauren James' series which follows Katherine and Matthew throughout history. I won't say too much because this is the second book, but there's been a big time leap since the last book finished. In this book we essentially follow Clove Sutcliffe, who is trying to find out what happened to her parents. There is time travel involved which is very cool and gives you Back to The Future vibes, and there's more romance but now between two other people.
There are many questions that weren't answered in the first book that are now answered in the second, you'll be pleased to know. I liked how we could still continue with Katherine and Matthew's story but through a different character. So much more of the history was explored and everything was tied up nicely. I loved reading a little bit of fantasy after reading mostly contemporary this year. I would really recommend this series if you're in YA - it's well written, with nice touches, and interesting ideas - like all that time travel and how love connects two people.
The Fate of the Tearling by Erika Johansen*, RRP: $37.00
Published by Penguin on 28 November 2016
The Fate of the Tearling is the conclusion to the Tearling trilogy - I read the first two books about a year ago. The second book was a stand-out for me in particular so I knew I wanted to get into the third as soon as possible. The series is fantasy and science fiction, incorporating magic into it, interesting characters, and has a complex world and history. The first book follows the future Queen of the Tearling, Kelsea, as she travels from her adoptive parent's home to the Tearling's castle where she will rule. I won't say too much about the plot of book two and three, but if you get into the books, they're addictive and epic.
I'd have to say this was probably my favourite read of the month! I've missed reading fantasy and this has got me into it more. This book explained so much more of the history of the whole world and made sense of many, many things. I have loved Kelsea as a character from the beginning - she has been a very interesting and refreshing character, with lots and lots of character development. I actually find this series to be have feminist elements to it as well. I enjoyed this book probably the most out of the three, until the ending. I definitely do think this series is well worth a read, however I was disappointed and this would have been a 5 star read! I won't say anymore, but I'm just waiting until someone I know finishes this book so I can discuss it with them. I loved this series so much and am going to miss it - it's bittersweet!
*Sent to me for review