Book Reviews: “Code Name Verity”, “This Lullaby”, “Thirteen Days to Midnight” and “Angelology”

Hey guys! Today’s blog post is reviewing the last of the books I read in 2021. I didn’t have the chance to fit this in December, but still wanted to share my thoughts. I did already rank this in my 2021 book rankings post so you might know how I feel about a few of these books. So let’s get into it!

Code Name Verity

We’re going back to early November with this book! Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein is a YA Historical Fiction about two women who worked for the British Army during World War II. It’s hard to describe the novel because the characters’ names are an integral part of the story, so sorry if this is confusing. One of the girls is a spy who gets captured in Nazi-occupied France. The other girl is a pilot who flies the spy into France. The first half of the book is the written transcription of the spy’s interrogation and the second half of the book is told from the pilot’s perspective.

As you can tell from this description, the book is a little confusing. Add to the fact that I don’t know much about the British military and there were a ton of acronyms and places I didn’t know. It took me a bit to get into the book, to say the least. BUT once I did get it, I was hooked. And at the end there was a major plot point that completely shocked me.

Overall I thought it was a really interesting book and I learned something new. The World War II genre is quite saturated, but I think this was an interesting part of history that I didn’t know much about. I have the book 4/4 stars and recommend it to any World War II history lovers.

This Lullaby

I was feeling a bit of a slump so I wanted a fun book, and nothing is more fun for me to read than YA Contemporary Romance. I decided to read This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen. If you were like me and my friends, we grew up reading Sarah Dessen novels in high school. I had this one on my shelf and hadn’t read it yet! This story is about Remy and Dexter. Remy is a little pessimistic when it comes to love, after seeing her mom go through many failed relationships. That is until she meets Dexter, a musician who changes how she views everything.

I liked Remy because she’s not perfect as some of Dessen’s other characters. She’s a bit of a heart-breaker and does things like drink and have sex. She’s a little bit more relatable to me to read as an adult. While Dexter wasn’t my favourite love interest, I still appreciate his and Remy’s relationship. Just want to note if you prefer slowburn books, this isn’t for you. Remy and Dexter have more of an off-and-on again romance. Just something I wanted to note because I know people prefer certain tropes over others.

Overall I enjoyed this book! This book came out twenty years ago so it’s interesting to see how different certain things are while some things are the same. Like sure most people don’t use landlines anymore but friendship and relationship struggles are still the same. I gave the book 4/4 stars. I’ve also decided I want to read all of Sarah Dessen novels, so expect to see some more reviews this year.

Thirteen Days to Midnight

After having two good books I hit a snag. I did not finish (DNF) Thirteen Days to Midnight by Patrick Carman. I decluttered the book, that’s why the image is not the book in front of my bookshelf. The premise of the book is that Jacob gets this power that he can transfer that makes someone indestructible. He meets this new girl Ophelia who convinces him to use the power for good until he realizes that this power is more of a curse.

I found that the actual plot wasn’t lining up with the premise. I read about a 1/3 of the book and felt like the plot was going nowhere. The other big issue I had with the book was the characters. I found Jacob, the main character, to be super bland. It’s a pretty well-known comment within the online book community that white men often suck at writing female characters. And while that is not always the case, this book is not the exception. Ophelia is one of the manic pixie dream girls that you often see in early 2010s novels.

I just couldn’t stand the characters and the book wasn’t going anywhere so I decided to put it down. It’s not often I DNF books since I’m pretty stubborn and like to follow through on things. But since I had been in a slump recently I didn’t want to into one again just for the sake of finishing a book I wasn’t enjoying. So I put it down. I did not rate the book since I DNFed it. I would not recommend it to anyone.

Angelology

I got pretty unlucky because the book I read after that I also DNFed. Angelology by Danielle Trussoni is the first book in an uncompleted series, so I was a little hesitant going into it. The story is about Evangeline, who was abandoned at a convent as a child. As she assists a scholar she uncovers a disturbing secret related to her family. This is an Adult Fantasy.

It’s an interesting story and I found the cast of characters to be unique. It’s beautifully descriptive and the passages flow easily. But man, the book is boring. Trussoni often has the habit of meandering, going back in time or writing long passages from books or the bible. I got about a 1/3 of the way through the book and barely anything had happened.

I decided to put down the book because it was boring. Also, the fact that the series was unfinished because the publisher didn’t want to produce the last book was not motivating me to continue. I didn’t want to invest more time into a story I wouldn’t know the ending of. I did not rate the book since I DNFed it. Unless you’re really into religious fantasies, I would pass on this book.

And those were the last of the books I read in 2021. After having two duds I decided to go through my physical TBR and declutter some books. There were quite a few that just didn’t interest me anymore or had bad reviews online. Hopefully, I won’t have to DNF a book again in the near future. If you’ve read these books let me know your thoughts in the comments. And with all my reviews let me know if you have any suggestions for me!

xoxo

Lea