March 2020 Reading Wrap Up – Part One [Books]

March 2020 1

January Wrap UpFebruary Wrap Up

I read 16 books in March. It was a very strange month – GP advised me to remain isolated for 2 weeks, which meant I missed the last two weeks of my workplace being open. There was then a gap where they didn’t know if we’d be able to work from home or not, and they decided from April 1st we would. So my reading time from March has disappeared. I doubt April’s wrap up will be a two-parter, but this one will have to be.

A Touch of Death – Rebecca Crunden

a touch of death

My Review

Crunden’s novel is a post-apocalyptic sci-fi tale set in a world ravaged by disease, where the rich are protected and the poor are stepped on, where one wrong step can result in someone being tortured or put to death. When the two main characters pick up a strange disease, the fear of infection ensures those in power won’t just let them escape. They run, searching for safety and, if possible, a cure. A fantastic story, I really enjoyed reading this one, though I am a little glad I finished it at the start of March instead of a bit later.

Generation X – Scott Lobdell

generation xMy Review

Generation X is essentially a X-Men graphic novel, but focusing on a new generation of heroes. It was an enjoyable, fun read, and I really enjoyed it, despite having very little knowledge of most of these characters. But it’s well worth a look.

Into the Drowning Deep – Mira Grant (Narrated by Christine Lakin)

into the drowning deepMy Review

I’m relatively new to audiobooks, but I’m a longtime listener of podcasts, so it wasn’t that hard to start listening to these. That said, the other audiobook I finished in March I didn’t find to be that great. Into the Drowning Deep, on the other hand, is a brilliant sea-based horror, and the narration for this was fantastic. It proved to be completely and utterly engaging. Definitely worth checking out.

The Corruption of Alston House – John Quick

alston houseMy Review

If you’re interested in horror, you definitely need to be paying attention to Silver Shamrock. These publishers are consistently putting out fantastic horror novels, ranging from haunted house tales like Alston House, to more thriller based stories, to tales about creepy cults. Alston House is a really good story about a woman who moves into the place after a divorce. She’s looking to start a new life, and like many haunted house stories, she finds she gets more than she bargained for. Quick really created an intriguing, gripping tale here, and it’s well worth a read.

The Fourth Whore – E.V. Knight

the fourth whoreMy Review

With a title like The Fourth Whore, you know this book has something to say. And damn, it did not disappoint. This is E.V. Knight’s debut novel, and it is powerful. It’s a gory, violent, feminist tale, tackling the story of Lilith through the eyes of a young woman struggling to make something of her life. We’re currently only in April, and I can already see this as one of my top books of 2020.

Poison – Sarah Pinborough

poisonMy Review

Poison is a retelling of the story of Snow White, and Pinborough masterfully takes the original story, sprinkles elements from other fairy tales, and creates something that feels new and fresh. I’m currently on the third book of the series, and honestly, these books get better with every installment. I’m going to be sad when I finish Beauty, the third and final book.

Happy Hour and Other Philadelphia Cruelties – Tony Knighton

happy houtMy Review

This was a collection of crime/noir stories I wasn’t really fussed on, but it would be impossible to love every book I read. There was one standout from this book I really liked, a story with more of a sci-fi bent.

Shallow Waters, Volume 1 – Edited by Joe Mynhardt

shallow waters vol 1My Review

Shallow Waters is a series of flash fiction anthologies from Crystal Lake Publishing, and the books contain some brilliant stories. Volume 1 was a great, interesting read, and if you like horror flash fiction, I definitely recommend picking this one up.

So there we have the 8 books for Part 1! Have you read any of these? Any books you read in March you really enjoyed? Look out for part 2, coming soon.

Generation X – Scott Lobdell [Graphic Novels]

generation xWhen it comes to graphic novels, I have a tendency to pick up random ones at cons or second-hand ones in bookshops, depending where I am. Often they’re related in some way to characters I already know in certain franchises, or there’s at least some link, something that draws me to them, if I don’t pick up something unseen for a bargain, anyway.

This was one of those random purchases, picked up thanks to a longstanding love of X-Men, ensuring if I spot any sort of X-Men graphic novel on the cheap, I won’t waste a second before I purchase it.

These characters are not the same X-Men fans of the cartoons or films will be familiar with. There’s no Jean Grey, Wolverine or even Professor X on these pages. However, Jubilee is a familiar face, and though I haven’t read the X-Men storyline leading up to Generation X, it was still easy to dip in and follow what’s happening.

This volume introduces the new characters fairly seamlessly, with their various arrivals to Xavier’s School, including one interrupted by a dark, dangerous presence at the airport. The gang, of course, tackle this threat head on, but it takes more than fighting spirit for their next adventure.

Although these are introductory comics, they work really well, keeping the plot and action moving forward as we get to know each character. Small tidbits are revealed, and it makes a great starting point for the series.

It’s a shame this iteration of the X-Men has been overlooked, as there are some interesting powers at play here and possibly rich characters who could have been more fully explored. If I come across the next volume in the series, I’ll definitely check it out, but as with many of these random graphic novels, it doesn’t seem that easy to come by, or to work out what actually is the next volume.

For me though, this was definitely a fun and interesting read, and it was enjoyable to read about different characters in this familiar setting.