Title: Jonathan’s Vows Author: Mark Lages Genre: Literary fiction Year Published: 2021
Date finished: March 30, 2021
Jonathan’s Vows by Mark Lages is a literary fiction novel about a young man who is about to get married and is writing his vows. In the process he reflects on his life. The story begins with the wedding and leads to the honeymoon, to buying his first house, to having his first child, and so on. There is sort of a chronological order to this story yet includes stories that are out of order. And, it’s written like a memoir yet includes a second person point-of-view: his wife. This is uniquely done.
I loved this book! The style is very different from anything I’ve read. Lages took something so simple and created this beautiful story about a man’s journey through life—through ups and downs. In the end, you’re left feeling like life is okay. If you’re ever too hard on yourself, read this book. It will make you see yourself in a much kinder way. It put a smile on my face. I laughed at times and sympathized other times. It’s wonderfully written.
Who should read this book: Everyone. It’s a book that we can all learn from. There are no lessons to teach and there are no end goals. It’s a simple story about one man’s life, yet there is so much to get out of.
Title: Gideon the Ninth Author: Tamsyn Muir Genre: Fantasy, Dystopian, Grimdark Year Published: 2019
Date finished: March 25, 2021
Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir is a dark fantasy about a sort of princess, known as the Reverend Daughter, and her guard/soldier/protector. They were invited to an event where the game was about who wins and who dies. The soldier, Gideon, initially had no interest in being a part of this. She had her own plans to escape the House, but the Reverend Daughter found a way to keep her from leaving. The event was super brutal and extremely gory.
A couple of things I really enjoyed about this book:
The writing is beautiful. The prose is very unique and left me completely amazed.
The relationship between Gideon and the Reverend Daughter was superb. It starts out with both women detesting each other. One would not give in to the other. With the Reverend Daughter having most of the control, she was able to force Gideon to do as she says. The two eventually began to understand each other and eventually got on good terms. I thought this was nicely done.
One thing I want to point out is that the style of writing can be difficult to understand. I found myself looking up quite a few words. The story style reminds me of Dune by Frank Herbert. It’s a very complex storyline with layers and a lot of characters to remember. The world was fascinating. It’s got swords, magic, skeletons, trains, futuristic things.
I really enjoyed this book. I believe the relationship leaned toward LGBT, but it wasn’t in-your-face. I didn’t get that impression at all. It was subtle. You knew, but it wasn’t forced.
Who should read this: All lovers of fantasy, magic, future worlds, and horror and gore. The worldbuilding is extravagant. It’s a really amazing book.
With all that’s been going on in our world, I’ve found myself visiting an old song by Hillsong United that seemed to have helped ease the anxiety. My father-in-law was also admitted to the hospital a few days ago and underwent a triple heart bypass. His situation reminded me of my own dad’s heart surgery five/six years ago. My dad passed away last August from a brain hemorrhage, but I still find myself talking about him like he’s alive. There are days when I’ve accepted that he’s passed, but they are rare. I will get over this. The photo above was taken at a Hillsong concert in 2019 I went with my husband and sisters.
“Nothing Like Your Love” by Hillsong United
Other favorites this month:
“Aura” by Matias Puumala
“Against the Odds” by Matias Puumala
“Smell of Desire” by Enigma
This was a strange mix of music. You could say the same for the movies/tv shows I watched this month:
Colony (dystopian apocalyptic)
The Truman Show (90’s dark drama movie…watched it twice!)