Books finished (they were all started already): 4
My goal was to finish at least 3, so yay! I am a slow reader.
JRR Tolkien: A Biography by Humphrey Carpenter
I don't normally read biographies, but I'm a huge Tolkien fan and this is his "authorized" bio, apparently. I liked the way it was organized, I learned a LOT of interesting tidbits, and gained even more respect for him, as well as a new-found respect for one of his children, Christopher (Christopher is a boss genius). 5/5.
The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
I've been reading this series since early high school or something, so it's kinda a huge part of my literary life. This book wrapped up or made a lot of progress on a LOT of plotlines, which was fantastic. It also delivered on some VERY LONG AWAITED scenes, some of which I cried over (I won't lie). And the culmination of Rand's issues near the end was beautiful. 4/5.
Idylls of the King and a Selection of Poems by Tennyson
He's Victorian, so yes there is some sexism (not as bad as I was expecting) and a lot of gender stereotyping. HOWEVER, his Arthurian reimaginings were very readable and gripping. The standalone poems varied in quality (I love "Ulysses;" I hate "Locksley Hall"). 4/5.
The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathon Stroud
This story was somehow darker than I was expecting, so I kept having to update my expectations. Bartimaeus is a fantastic character, though, and I love the world-building, and all of the different demons, and Lovelace was chilling. Nathaniel (one of the two protags) disappointed me. But still a fantastic read! 5/5.