• Allison Wolfe

Weekly Wrap Up September Week 2

Hello readers and welcome or welcome back to my blog! September is flying by but I am staying busy. In this post, I will be wrapping up my reading for September week 2 from the 6th to the 12th. I did not do as much reading this week but I still did pretty well!

On the 6th, I started Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas (3 stars) and finished it the next morning. This one fit the Monsterathon challenge for a BIPOC author I haven’t tried. It was a quick read. I just didn’t enjoy it much. I feel like the story had interesting bits. It would bring little things up and then the thing brought up would never come back or just wouldn’t matter in general. For instance, there was experimentation and the ideas weren’t formed enough, in my opinion. The MC had a mysterious past and I don’t think it really mattered to the overall story. There was a very slow pacing and the wait didn’t pay off. I just wanted more information about things and I wanted it to be creepier. I did review this on Goodreads and my Goodreads is linked at the top of the page.

Synopsis: Catherine House is a school of higher learning like no other. Hidden deep in the woods of rural Pennsylvania, this crucible of reformist liberal arts study with its experimental curriculum, wildly selective admissions policy, and formidable endowment, has produced some of the world’s best minds: prize-winning authors, artists, inventors, Supreme Court justices, presidents. For those lucky few selected, tuition, room, and board are free. But acceptance comes with a price. Students are required to give the House three years—summers included—completely removed from the outside world. Family, friends, television, music, even their clothing must be left behind. In return, the school promises its graduates a future of sublime power and prestige, and that they can become anything or anyone they desire. Among this year’s incoming class is Ines, who expects to trade blurry nights of parties, pills, cruel friends, and dangerous men for rigorous intellectual discipline—only to discover an environment of sanctioned revelry. The school’s enigmatic director, Viktória, encourages the students to explore, to expand their minds, to find themselves and their place within the formidable black iron gates of Catherine. For Ines, Catherine is the closest thing to a home she’s ever had, and her serious, timid roommate, Baby, soon becomes an unlikely friend. Yet the House’s strange protocols make this refuge, with its worn velvet and weathered leather, feel increasingly like a gilded prison. And when Baby’s obsessive desire for acceptance ends in tragedy, Ines begins to suspect that the school—in all its shabby splendor, hallowed history, advanced theories, and controlled decadence—might be hiding a dangerous agenda that is connected to a secretive, tightly knit group of students selected to study its most promising and mysterious curriculum.

On the 7th, I started and finished One to Watch by Kate Stayman-London (5-stars) in one sitting. One to Watch fits my 6th prompt for Bookoplathon to read a book set in the present. If you want to see my full thoughts on One to Watch, I will link my review below. It is mostly about representation.

Synopsis: Bea Schumacher is a devastatingly stylish plus-size fashion blogger who has amazing friends, a devoted family, legions of Insta followers--and a massively broken heart. Like the rest of America, Bea indulges in her weekly obsession: the hit reality show Main Squeeze. The fantasy dates! The kiss-off rejections! The surprising amount of guys named Chad! But Bea is sick and tired of the lack of body diversity on the show. Since when is being a size zero a prerequisite for getting engaged on television? Just when Bea has sworn off dating altogether, she gets an intriguing call: Main Squeeze wants her to be its next star, surrounded by men vying for her affections. Bea agrees, on one condition--under no circumstances will she actually fall in love. She's in this to supercharge her career, subvert harmful anti-fat beauty standards, inspire women across America, and get a free hot air balloon ride. That's it. But when the cameras start rolling, Bea realizes things are more complicated than she anticipated. She's in a whirlwind of sumptuous couture, Internet culture wars, sexy suitors, and an opportunity (or two, or five) to find messy, real-life love in the midst of a made-for-TV fairy tale. In this joyful, razor-sharp debut, Bea has to decide whether it might just be worth trusting these men--and herself--for a chance to live happily ever after.

My review: https://allithebookgiraffe.wixsite.com/allithebookgiraffe/post/one-to-watch-review-no-spoilers-5-stars

On the 8th, I started Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi (4 stars) and finished it on the 12th. Ignite Me was my chance card for Bookoplathon this month. This one was a reread for me. I originally read this book when it was a trilogy and have been making my way back through the trilogy so I can read the second trilogy that was added around four years later. Honestly, I don’t love flowery writing but I do tolerate it for these books. I think Mafi can sometimes spell everything out too much but I do love this story.

Synopsis of book 1 (Shatter Me): Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days. The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color. The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war – and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now. Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.

That is my whole reading week for September week 2. I managed to tick off one book for Monsterathon and two for Bookoplathon. I have completed 6/11 Bookoplathon challenges so far. I am going to post week 3’s wrap up next Monday as the royal readathon runs Sunday to Sunday. If you would like to see my TBR for the royal readathon, I will link it below. Comment below and let me know what you have read this week!

Weekly total:

-3 books

- 421 pages

-1 3 star

-1 4 star

-1 5 star

Monthly total:

-8 books

-2749 pages

-1 2 star

-3 3 stars

-2 4 stars

-2 5 stars

Royal Readathon TBR: https://allithebookgiraffe.wixsite.com/allithebookgiraffe/post/royal-readathon-tbr

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