Review of The Luminous Dead by Caitlin Starling

CWs: claustrophobia, body modifications, body horror, underwater scenes, slow-burn suspense, violations of bodily autonomy, violations of trust, isolation and the resulting mental health decline, moments when you’re not sure you can trust your own mind

Rep: Gyre is queer. Em is queer and a mixed-race WOC. I also feel like Gyre might have ADHD really similar to mine and Em might be autistic, but it is not confirmed on page. It is very strongly my head canon.

5 of 5 stars

I received a free e-ARC from Edelweiss for review. I proceeded to buy the paperback and audiobook I loved it so much.

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March 2019 Wrap-up and Stats

A big thing that happened this month is I scheduled my last two terms of grad school. They’re going to be a little busier than I anticipated (what I was planning to do in three terms I’m trying in two) so I’m not going to be continuing any of my regular posts. I’ll do plans or wrap-ups as I feel like. If I do any updates they’ll just be what I’ve read recently (I’ll give the timeframe in the update). I’ll still be keeping track of my reading on Goodreads and posting my bookish thoughts on Twitter. I’ve also got some review copies I’m still planning to review, but I don’t have any schedule idea for that; they’ll happen when they happen.

With that update, here’s some stats for the month!

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First March 2019 Weekly Update

It’s been a weird month so far. The first two books in this post I actually finished on February 28th, but after I’d put up my update. Then I didn’t finish anything until March 10th. It’s been a slow start.

Previously I was putting these up on Wednesday because 1) that’s the day everyone else does their WWW Wednesday posts and 2) I have a time block on Wednesday evenings that I can dedicate to writing updates. However, considering my time block is pretty late on Wednesday and I can’t always finish the post then, it makes sense to plan for my updates to go up on Thursdays. So that’s the plan, at least for a while.

The template I’m using for these updates is WWW Wednesday, hosted by Taking on a World of Words and recommended to me by Destiny at Howling Libraries.

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Review: Empire of Light by Alex Harrow

Empire of Light by Alex Harrow

5 of 5 stars

I received an eARC from the author in exchange for my honest review.

REP: The main character is a Person of Color (POC), gay, and demisexual. One of his love interests is pan, and the other is pan, polyam, kinky, and a sex worker. They are all three amazing beans that I love with my whole heart. Supporting characters include a badass old lady who’s blind and a WOC, a whole variety of gender identities, sexualities, and other ways of existing, and a run-down spaceship called Shadow (it’s a character and you can’t tell me otherwise).

CWs: There’s a lot. This is a dark book. There are many graphic depictions of violence, several executions (some attempted, some successful, varying from hanging to burning to shooting), and some of this violence is against kids, queer folks, and POC. There are some intense trust violations and several instances of unwanted/non-consensual groping. The main character is a survivor of sexual abuse and there are both flashbacks to that and lots of him dealing with those feelings in the present day. One of the love interests has an intense fear regarding fire (I’m not sure if it would be considered a phobia when this fear is 1000% rational… more like PTSD, I think). The author offers very detailed warnings at the beginning of the book as well, which can I just say I LOVE AND APPRECIATE.

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March 2019 Plan

Lately I’ve started feeling stressed about reading. This is partially because I have people expecting me to read certain ARCs, whether because they’re expecting reviews or because they’re the people I’m sending the ARC to once I’m done. However, it’s also partially because I’m just feeling stressed about everything lately for mental health reasons. It happens and I’m planning to talk to my doctors about it. For now, though, I’m just going to try to create the most relaxed and fun reading environment I can and hope that my mood follows.

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