March/April 2020 Reading Wrap-up

What a weird month March was! I read one whole book and DNFed a bunch. I just wasn’t in the mood. Things were changing so rapidly and I just didn’t have the space for books. I was more interested in spending time on Facebook checking in on friends and trying to get work-from-home arrangements all sorted.

Fortunately, I feel like April has calmed down a little. I know this comes from a place of privilege, but now that shut-down has reached the point of “Don’t go out except for essentials” and there is actually a list of what those are, I feel like I know what I’m doing, rather than balancing on a knife-edge, waiting for more news.

Since I only read one book in the whole of March, I’ve rolled that month in with this month’s wrap-up. As usual, I have not always written a review, but I’ll link to GoodReads if I expressed more than a sentence or two of thoughts there.

Past Month’s Reading

  1. The True Colour of the Sea by Robert Drewe (short stories/literary fiction – 2 stars – GoodReads)
  2.  Scythe (Arc of Scythe #1) by Neal Shusterman (YA dystopia – 3.5 stars – review)
  3. Troll Hunter: Witch For Hire by P A. Mason (fantasy – 4 stars – not intending to review)
  4. The Lost Letter by Mimi Matthews (historical romance – 3 stars – not intending to review)
  5. That Night In Paris (Holiday Romance #2) by Sandy Barker (romance – 3.5 stars – review)
  6. Peta Lyre’s Rating Normal by Anna Whateley (YA contemporary – 5 stars – review)
  7. The Damsel Gauntlet by P. A. Mason (fantasy – 4 stars – review)
  8. The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman (contemporary romance – 3 stars – mini review
  9. Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (YA sci-fi – 4 stars – review)
  10. There she Goes by Lynne Shelby (contemporary romance – 3 stars – mini-review)
  11. Cookies and Curses by Rosie Pease (cozy mystery/paranormal – 3.5 stars stars – mini review)

Interesting how many of these were romances of one form or another. I have no idea where to find it now but I was reading an article a few weeks ago about how sales of romance always go up in times of crisis, and how romance books basically kept the publishing industry afloat during WW2.  I think we all need a guaranteed happy ending or two to get us through these strange times. 


I have an announcement on that front. After several months of sporadic posting, I have finally decided to let my Booktube channel die. It was started on a bit of a whim and it was fun for a while. But I wasn’t really invested in it and putting together videos takes a lot more work than blogging. So I’m just going to keep this as my little corner of the bookish Internets. 

Favourite Bookish Photo:


I’m probably a little bit biased with this one, as I’m currently in (online) rehearsals for a musical adaptation of The Thornthwaite Inheritance by Gareth P. Jones. But seriously, these books were such fun. If you enjoy The Addams Family and A Series of Unfortunate Events and quirky British humour, then you will love these books! 


We might be going into the colder months here but we are lucky enough to still get beautiful sunny days even when it’s chilly. This photo was taken on a Saturday morning when I  sat outside on my sun lounge and read for a couple of hours. I read Aurora Rising just in time for the sequel, which came out a couple of days ago. 

You can see all my bookish photos (plus some RL as well) on my Instagram.

Currently Reading: 

Physical book: Ochre Dragon by V. E. Patton. I’m finally reading this! This is by one of my dear writer friends, and also it has dragons so how has it taken me this long? Also I love that one of the characters is a woman over 50! How often do you see that in fantasy?

Ebook: No ebook at the moment. 

Audio book: The King of Crows by Libba Bray, book four in the Diviners series. This is… three big road trips at the moment? Don’t get me wrong, I’m enjoying it, it’s just,… taking a while to literally get anywhere. 

Planning to Read Next: 

I’m not completely sure yet but I suspect it might be Oasis by Katya de Becerra. I won a signed copy recently and i can’t wait to get started. I’ve heard such good things about it and it sounds fascinating! I just hope it lives up to expectations. 

What have you been reading lately? 🙂

April 2019 Reading Wrap-up

Past Month’s Reading:

Another decent reading month with a total of 8 books read!

    1. Hive by A. J. Betts (YA dystopia – 3 stars – review) (read March, reviewed April)
    2. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray (YA sci-fi/romance – 4.5 stars – review) (read March, reviewed April)
    3. Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray (YA sci-fi/romance – 3.5 stars – review)
    4. A Million Worlds With You by Claudia Gray (YA sci-fi/romance – 4 stars – review)
    5. The Steam Engines of Oz by Sean Patrick O’Reilly, Erik Hendrix and illustrations by Yannis Roumboulias (fantasy graphic novel – 3 stars – not intending to review)
    6. Wolfhunter River by Rachel Caine (thriller – 4 stars – review)
    7. Romanov by Nadine Brandes (YA historical fantasy – 3.5 stars – review)
    8. The Winter Freak Show by Daniel Parsons (MG historical fantasy – 2 stars – not intending to review)
    9. The Doll Maker by Celine Jeanjean (steampunk – 5 stars – review)
    10. P Is For Pearl by Eliza Henry Jones (YA contemporary – 3 stars – review forthcoming)



I have a BookTube Channel where I talk about Australian books. I only got one video posted this month, though I intend to get a bit more on top of it in the coming weeks. 

Favourite Bookish Photo:

So this is more about the book I’m writing than any that I read during the month, but I didn’t do any book posts! I’m really pleased with where my Camp NaNoWriMo project took me, though. The MS is now at 60000 words and I love the direction it’s taking!

You can see all my bookish photos (plus some RL as well) on my Instagram.

Currently Reading:

Physical book: Nothing at the moment.

Ebook: I am reading an ARC of Lucid by Kristy Fairlamb, which came out last week. I usually don’t pick up ARCs after their release date but I follow Kristy on Twitter and the book was Read Now on NetGalley and here we are. 

Audio book: I am about a third of the way through Enchantée by Gita Trelease. I don’t mind it but I think it’s going to take me a while to get through. 

Planning to read next:

I’m going to pick up The Things That Will Not Stand by Michael Gerard Bauer and get back into my Children’s Book Council of Australia 2019 Notables challenge. This sounds like an interesting one and it’s quite short, so I hope I will get through it quite quickly. 

What are you reading? 🙂

March 2019 Reading Wrap-up

Past Month’s Reading:

Nine books this month! It’s a bit of a record. And given that I was in a bit of a rough place for a couple of weeks, I’m actually surprised the total is that high. 

This month I began a challenge to read as many books on the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s 2019 Notables list, and I read four of them this month. 

    1. Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor (YA fantasy – 4 stars – review) (read February, reviewed March)
    2. Famous Last Words by Katie Alender (YA paranormal/thriller – 4 stars – review) (read February, reviewed March)
    3. An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson (YA fantasy – 3.5 stars – review)
    4. Bird Box by Josh Malerman (horror – 2.5 stars – review
    5. A Thousand Nights by E. K. Johnston (YA fantasy – 3.5 stars – did not review) 
    6. Between Us by Clare Atkins (YA contemporary – 5 stars – review)
    7. Small Spaces by Sarah Epstein (YA thriller – 3 stars – review)
    8. Catching Teller Crow by Ambellin Kwaymullina and Ezekiel Kwaymullina (YA magical realism – 2.5 stars – review)
    9. Hive by A. J. Betts (YA dystopia – 3 stars – review forthcoming)
    10. The Dying Flame by R. L. Sanderson (YA fantasy – 3 stars – review forthcoming)
    11. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray (YA sci-fi/romance – 4.5 stars – review forthcoming)


I have a BookTube Channel where I talk about Australian books. Here are the videos I posted this month.

Favourite Bookish Photo:

These are the first four books I read for the CBCA2019 Challenge. You can see all my bookish photos (plus some RL as well) on my Instagram.

Currently Reading:

Physical book: Amelia Westlake by Erin Gough. I have only just started this YA contemporary but I have a feeling it’s going to be a good one.

Ebook: Nothing at the moment.

Audio book: I only just finished A Thousand Pieces of You this morning so I haven’t had a chance to start anything else.

Planning to read next:

I’m planning to start the ARC of Wolfhunter River by Rachel Caine. I loved the first two books in the Stillhouse Lake series so I can only hope that this one is just as good.

I’m also intending to read Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray, because I definitely want to continue the Firebird series.

What are you reading? 🙂

March 2018 Reading Wrap-up


First of all, just a quick note to say that as of today, A Keyboard and an Open Mind will be a bit quite until mid-April. I am heading to Nepal on Monday, returning to Australia on April 14. While I’m away, I’m going to have only the most basic of Internet access, so I won’t be scheduling any book reviews! I’ll see you on the other side!

Past Month’s Reading:

Here’s my March-April TBR:


While I only ticked three books off my official list, I did power through ten books all together.

The  things I read and reviewed were:

  • Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh (non-fiction/memoir/comic – 3 stars – not reviewed)
  • Deadly Sweet by Lola Dodge (urban fantasy – 4 stars – review)
  • Deep Storm by Lincoln Child (sci-fi/thriller – 2 stars – not reviewed)
  • Daddy Darkest by Ellery Kane (thriller – 3.5 stars – review)
  • Call Me Sasha by Geena Leigh (memoir – 3 stars – review)
  • A Kiss from Mr Fitzgerald by Natasha Lester (historical romance – 4 stars – review)
  • The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore (historical fiction – 5 stars – review)
  • The Sherlockian by Graham Moore (historical fiction – 3 stars – review)
  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (YA dystopia – 1 star – review)
  • Manhattan (Lovers and Liars #1) by Liz Meldon (erotic/fantasy – 3 stars – not reviewed)

Currently reading:

Physical book: The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon. This is not what I expected it to be but I’m hoping I’ll still enjoy it. It’s quite long but I have a four-hour train trip on Sunday, so I’m hoping to get through a decent amount of it then.

Audio book: I don’t have an audio book on the go right now. 

Planning to read next:

I am headed to Nepal on Monday! I have several ebooks earmarked for reading on the plane including Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery and A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. Part of me wants to say that I’ll spend my 30 hours of plane travel (about 15 hours each way) powering through all  my books, the other  part of me knows I will totally spend probably a fair chunk of it watching movies or playing games on the in-flight system.

As I noted above, this blog will be quiet over the next couple of weeks, but I’ll hopefully be back into blogging as soon as I return.

How is your reading going?