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Author: TS Chan

Book Review: Wintersteel (Cradle, #8) by Will Wight

Book Review: Wintersteel (Cradle, #8) by Will Wight

Wintersteel by Will Wight

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Series: Cradle (Book #8 of 12)

Genre: Fantasy, Progression Fantasy, Xianxia

Published: 6th October 2020 by Hidden Gnome Publishing (Indie)


Wintersteel was yet another immensely addictive, fun and fantastic continuation in the Cradle series, which just keeps getting more epic with each book. 

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Book Review: A Life on Our Planet by David Attenborough

Book Review: A Life on Our Planet by David Attenborough

Review copy received from the publisher, Random House UK, in exchange for an honest review

A Life on Our Planet by David Attenborough

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Genre: Non-fiction, auto-biography, environmental/climate awareness & science

Published: 1st October 2020 by Ebury Press (Random House UK) and 6th October 2020 by Grand Central Publishing (Hachette Book)


Brilliance was what I’ve expected from Attenborough, and brilliance was exactly what I got.

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Book Review: Master Artificer (The Silent Gods, #2) by Justin T Call

Book Review: Master Artificer (The Silent Gods, #2) by Justin T Call

ARC received from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Master Artificer by Justin T Call

My rating: 4 of 5 stars.

Series: The Silent Gods (Book 2 of 4)

Genre: Fantasy, epic fantasy, high fantasy

Publication date:  6th May 2021 by Gollancz (UK) and 18th May 2021 by Blackstone Publishing (US)


Master Artificer is a bigger and bolder sequel in every way possible; Call has taken The Silent Gods to new heights with an explosion of lore, worldbuilding and compellingly darker characterisation.

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Audiobook Review: Ever Winter by Peter Hackshaw

Audiobook Review: Ever Winter by Peter Hackshaw

I received a copy of the audiobook from the publisher, Monolith Books, in exchange for an honest review.

 

Ever Winter by Peter Hackshaw (Narrated by Dan Stevens)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars/

Genre:  Dystopia, post-apocalyptic, sci-fi

Published:  9th Jan 2020 by Monolith Books, & 26th Jan 2021 by Podium Audio


Ever Winter is a great revenge story that starts slow, but engages with the gritty realism of its wintry post-apocalyptic dystopian setting.

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Book Review: Ink and Bone (The Great Library, #1) by Rachel Caine

Book Review: Ink and Bone (The Great Library, #1) by Rachel Caine

Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars.

Series: The Great Library (Book 1 of 5)

Genre:  Young adult, alternate history, historical fantasy, fantasy

Published: July 2015 by Berkley Books (US) and Allison & Busby (UK)


Ink and Bone is a fantastic entry in The Great Library series that enthralled me right from the very beginning and didn’t let go.

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Book Review: To Hold Up the Sky by Cixin Liu

Book Review: To Hold Up the Sky by Cixin Liu

ARC received from publisher, Tor, in exchange for an honest review.

To Hold Up the Sky by Cixin Liu

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Genre: Science fiction, short stories

Published:  1st October 2020 by Head of Zeus (UK) and 20 Oct 2020 by Tor Books (US)


True to his form as seen in his most renowned science fiction series, The Remembrance of Earth’s Past, Cixin Liu’s imagination in this short story collection, To Hold Up the Sky, was truly remarkable.

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Book Review: Why She Wrote by Lauren Burke & Hannah K. Chapman, Illustrated by Kaley Bates

Book Review: Why She Wrote by Lauren Burke & Hannah K. Chapman, Illustrated by Kaley Bates

ARC received from publisher, Chronicle Books, in exchange for an honest review.

Why She Wrote: A Graphic History of the Lives, Inspiration, and Influence Behind the Pens of Classic Women Writers by Lauren Burke, Hannah K. Chapman, Kaley Bales (Illustrator)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Genre: Non-fiction, women’s history, biography, graphic novel, classics

Publication date: 20th April 2021 by Chronicle Books


As I continue my endeavour to read more classics and heading into the new year with fresh reading resolutions, Why She Wrote couldn’t have come at a more opportune time. I wasn’t aware of this book until my co-blogger, Celeste, read and reviewed it most favourably. Furthermore, the first book we picked up in 2021 was Anne Bronte’s debut, Agnes Grey. Knowing that all the Bronte sisters were featured, I thought it would be interesting to read this title in tandem.

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TS’s Top 20 Books Read in 2020

TS’s Top 20 Books Read in 2020


2020 has been such a strange, stressful and complicated year.  I took a one-year sabbatical leave from work from mid-2019 and managed to do quite a bit of travelling for about six months before the world got completely turned upside down.  I’ve read/listen over 120 books this year, 73 of which was completed during the first half when I wasn’t working and the entire world was on lockdown.  Getting back to work during the second half in the midst of a global pandemic and a new challenging role did affect my ability to read and also write reviews on a regular basis.

Despite 2020 being such a watershed/dumpster year, it’s been an incredible one for my reading as I’ve completed a lot books ranging from great to masterpieces.  In fact, I can’t remember the last time I’ve added so many books onto my favourites shelf (many of which were from the same series).  If you’re curious/interested, you also can see my year in books for 2020 right here.

Similar to my previous list, I do not limit this to only books released this year.  There are simply too many great books that have been published prior and that I’ve yet to read, so there will always be older books included.  Below are the parameters that I’ve set for the list.

  • Rereads don’t count
  • One book per author
  • Not limited to books which are released this year.

None of these are ranked except for the top five.  The rest, I’ve listed them in the chronological order of when I’ve read them this year.  Almost all of these have been reviewed by me on Novel Notions and Goodreads, albeit some are quite brief.

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Book Review: The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix

Book Review: The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix

ARC received from publisher, Gollancz, in exchange for an honest review.

The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix

My rating: 4 of 5 stars.

Genre: Urban fantasy, historical fantasy, young adult

Published: 24th September 2020 by Gollancz (UK) and 22nd September 2020 Katherine Tegen Books (US)


The Left-Handed Booksellers of London was an enjoyable urban fantasy romp in an alternate 1980s-London which left me wanting more from this clever and fascinating world of magical secret service booksellers.

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Book Review: The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

Book Review: The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars.

Genre: Mystery, historical fiction

Published: 1st October 2020 by Raven Books (Bloomsbury Publishing, UK), 6th October 2020 by Sourcebooks Landmark (US)


Atmospheric as hell and brilliantly crafted, Stuart Turton’s sophomore release, The Devil and the Dark Water, was one of the best mystery novels I’ve ever read, and it solidly cemented his status as a must-read author for me.

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