First, Middle, and Last Impressions – September 7, 2022

I love taking a look at a book cover and description and then coming up with my own idea of what the book will be about. Sometimes I’m right, sometimes I’m so wrong it’s almost funny. So I’ve decided to write about my first, middle, and last impressions of each book I read, as well as a little bit on why I wanted to read it because sometimes, when I’ve finished, I really can’t remember.

The first impression is based solely on the cover and description. What do I think it will be about?

The middle impression is kind of a check-in on how the story is going about halfway through.

The last impression is my final thoughts on the book, what I’m left thinking.

I hope you have as much fun with this as I will!

The Spear Cuts Through Water by Simon Jimenez – Fantasy

the spear cuts through water simon jimenez

Why I want to read this: The concept is similar to one I have rattling around in my writer’s brain, so I’m curious to see how Jimenez handles it.

First Impression: After closer inspection of the description and cover, I have a feeling this will not be what I was expecting, but I’m still intrigued.

Middle Impression: After a rough and thoroughly confusing start, it now feels more like smoother sailing. The story is coming together very nicely and I get the feeling there’s a lot lurking under the surface. Jun and Keema are wonderful, but the flipping back and forth between time lines and characters is still sometimes hard to catch up with.

Last Impression: This truly is a love story, but it’s also brutal and painful and absolutely one unforgiving story. I continued to be confused by the switching time lines and POV, but have to admire the use of second person. I have to admit it was not always easy for me to catch up with what was going on, but I found the story and characters to be oddly compelling.

Other Birds by Sarah Addison Allen – Magical Realism

other birds sarah addison allen

Why I want to read this: The only other book of hers I read was Garden Spells when it was first released because my mom somehow, unexpectedly, was sent an ARC. I suppose I’m thrilled to have my own eARC copy of this one so I can say I’ve only read advance reader copies of her books? Anyways, I just figured now was a good time to jump back into her books.

First Impression: It’s been a while since I’ve read one of her books, but I still remember being hooked on all the magical realism, so of course that’s what I’m expecting, as well as a bit of mystery.

Middle Impression: So far, this is cute and sweet, if a bit birdy. I love the island and the characters, but I especially love how easily this story flows and how easy it is to read it and be swept up in the story. Though I’m not really sure what’s going on as so many characters have a voice so I’m having a hard time picking out a main character.

Last Impression: This is a sweet story of family and the pasts that follow us. I was disappointed there wasn’t as much magic as I expected, but the characters were compelling enough on their own. The story also ended a bit too abruptly for me, making this feel a little too short.

The Mime by Tommy Tutalo – Fantasy, MG/YA

the mime tommy tutalo

Why I want to read this: A couple of years ago I had the pleasure of reviewing another of Tutalo’s books, Esperanza, and was hooked on his voice and the Mexican culture so seamlessly and flawlessly woven into his storytelling. I don’t read many books aimed at a younger audience, but I am thrilled to have the opportunity to read this one.

First Impression: I’m not really sure what to expect, but this certainly sounds magical. Having previously read this author, I feel certain it will be gorgeous, though, and truly heartfelt.

Middle Impression: I’m getting Alice in Wonderland and Wizard of Oz vibes, but this is, unmistakenly, it’s own story. There’s a bit of a sinister twist to it and some more adult themes I wasn’t expecting, but I am definitely pulled into this story.

Last Impression: This was really a lovely and adventurous story full of love and finding one’s own voice, and the power of having a voice. I loved the focus on performers and their art, and the trials and tribulations one group went through with young Florina. I just wish Florina had been more of a focal point since the adults seemed to be in charge while she was pushed to the background even though this is supposed to be her story. But I liked that this was magical with a sinister twist.

Six Feet Apart by Elena Greyrock – Romance

six feet apart elena greyrock

Why I want to read this: I don’t think I’m quite ready for pandemic stories, but the romance story line caught my attention, and I love that the female lead is introverted.

First Impression: I think this will be a cute love story. I don’t really know what to expect, but I think the two main characters will be a lot of fun to get to know and it’ll be interesting to see their love story.

Middle Impression: This turned steamy really fast! I feel like a voyeur watching Luna and Stryker feel so hot and bothered around each other. So far, the story feels a bit simplistic, though some wenches are being thrown into their story, so I’m looking forward to see how they resolve everything. This is moving really well, and I liked how seamlessly and naturally life with COVID is woven in; it’s just a fact of life.

Current progress: 70%. I don’t want to say too much now that I’m so close to the end and risk spoiling the story, but I’m dying to know how Luna and Stryker’s love story is going to end.

What about you?

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