As the O.W.L.s readathon took place throughout the entire month of April, this monthly wrap up also functions as my magical readathon wrap up. Everything I read this month counted for an O.W.L.s exam! Here’s everything I read.
curse breaker owls
As I mentioned in my TBR post I wanted to go for the wizarding career of curse breaker, which required me to finish 6 exams. Let’s see how I did, and whether I’ll be able to take my N.E.W.T.s for my chosen career.
>The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh – ★★★ – it was okay
> The prompt for ancient runes was to read a retelling. I decided it was finally time to pick up The Wrath and the Dawn which had been on my TBR for years. I have to admit that I was disappointed by this novel. I thought it was just okay, and kind of struggled with finishing it. I think if I weren’t motivated by the readathon, I might have chosen to DNF this book. It was just so ‘meh’. I’ll write a full review soon so you can read more of my thoughts on it.
> Gemina (Illuminae Files #2) by Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufman – ★★★★.₅ – loved it
> I listened to the audiobook of Gemina for the prompt of reading a book by more than one author. I had fallen in love with Illuminae a few months earlier, and couldn’t wait to continue the series. This took me a bit longer to get into, but I ended up really loving it. The audiobooks of this series are truly fantastic. I still prefer the first book, but got so attached to the characters in this sequel too.
> Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata – ★★★★ – really liked it
> I saw this one was available on Scribd, and figured it was the perfect pick for the charms prompt of reading an adult novel. It was funny yet thought-provoking, and a book I would recommend to everyone.
defence against the dark arts
> The Three-Body Problem (Remembrance of Earth’s Past #1) by Cixin Liu – ★★★★.₅ – loved it
> Honestly, it was quite difficult to find a book that started with the letter ‘r’ on my shelves! Luckily, I just got The three-body problem from the library! The series name starts with an ‘r’, as you can see above. I’m glad the O.W.L.s finally pushed me to read this book because it was quite the experience. On the one hand, I think this novel is brilliant. I could stop reading once I reached the middle, and devoured the last half. On the other hand, so much of the physics talk went way over my head, and I feel like I missed out on something because of it.
> The Shadowglass (The Bone Witch #1) by Rin Chupeco – ★★★★★ – a new favorite
> Who is surprised this ended up being a 5-star read? Definitely not me. I’ve been in love with this series for years, and know I had to read the final book as soon as possible. It did not disappoint, and I shed some tears by the end. In public. On the tram. Yes, it was kind of embarrassing. The Shadowglass was the perfect read, and fit really well for the prompt of read a sequel.
> Death Note, Black Edition, Volume 1 by Tsugumi Ohba – ★★★★ – really liked it
>The prompt for transfiguration was to read a book with sprayed edges or red on the cover, which I completely by reading the first volume of the Death Note Black Editions. They all have black sprayed edges. I liked it a lot more than I expected to, and will continue the manga in May.
other owls I’ve taken
I mentioned that if I had time left or felt like it, I would try to take other OWLs as well. I managed to finish so many this month, and I’m quite proud of myself! Here are the other OWLs I took, ones that didn’t count for the curse breaker career.
care of magical creatures
> Fruits Basket volume 1 by Natsuki Takaya – ★★★★ – really liked it
> The prompt for this O.W.L. was to read a book with a land animal on the cover. As Fruits Basket is centered around the Chinese zodiac signs, and they are represented on the cover of the manga. The first volume was a tad confusing at the start, which got better after the first 20 pages or so. It’s such a fun and cute volume, and I can’t wait to continue the manga.
history of magic
> Fullmetal Alchemist volume 2 by Hiromu Arakawa – ★★★★ – really liked it
> I really wanted to continue this manga after reading the first volume a little while ago, and the prompt for history of magic provided me with the perfect excuse. This one was definitely published more than 10 years ago, which is kind of insane to think about. I didn’t love it as much as the first volume, but I’m still loving the series and will definitely continue with it soon.
> Black Butler volume 2 by Yana Toboso – ★★★.₅ – liked it
> Another O.W.L. that provided the perfect excuse to continue a manga series! For herbology, you had to read something with plants on the cover. On the back of this volume, there are a bunch of bushes and roses. I know you can’t see it here, but I promise it’s there. Once again, I didn’t love this as much as I did the first volume, but I do want to continue the series. I might start watching the anime in the meantime though.
> Obsidio (Illuminae Files #3) by Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufman – ★★★★ – really liked it
> After finishing Gemina, I knew I wanted to read the conclusion to the series as soon as possible. As the prompt for divination was to read a book set in the future, I decided to listen to the audiobook for this O.W.L. exam. This might be my least favorite of the three, because I didn’t much care for the first 20% or so of the book. However, I still really liked it and believe it’s a great conclusion to the trilogy. THAT ENDING THOUGH.
> The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes – ★★★★.₅ – loved it
> I bought this at YALC a while ago because it sounded absolutely fantastic. It’s a YA contemporary about a girl who grew up in a cult, had her hands cut off, and is now in juvie. Yeah, it’s a wild ride. I would recommend this book to everyone, because it’s absolutely brilliant. I can’t believe I waited so long to read it! It fit perfectly for the prompt of reading a contemporary novel.
Those are all the O.W.L.s I managed to finish – and thus all the books I read in the month of April. I finished 11 O.W.L.s which is both amazing and kind of disappointing. I’m very happy with what I read, but if I had read one more book, I could have finished all 12 O.W.L.s… I don’t feel too bad about it, since I didn’t have a book on my to-read list that would fit for the astronomy prompt. I’m pleased I managed to finish the O.W.L.s I need for my future career in curse breaking though. Did you take part in the #owlsreadathon2019? Which exams did you take? Did you finish the courses needed for your chosen wizarding career? I’d love to chat about it in the comments below!