Hello everyone, and welcome back!
This week’s Weekly Reads were Iron to Iron and Blood for Blood, and I could probably come up with a lot to say about them, but I also don’t really want to? Not out of blogger laziness, but just because even I can be tired of being disappointed!
These weren’t bad, don’t get me wrong. But the mystery the novella Iron to Iron solves (what did Adele do to Luka during the previous Axis Tour?) plays out as predictably as humanly possible. As in Wolf by Wolf, the Axis Tour itself was mildly disappointing in terms of how little we see of its politics, the strategy of pit stop timing, the pros/cons of certain maneuvers or sabotage attempts. (I wish the author had delved further into racing rather than just throwing it in as a fun premise, basically.)
And Luka’s perspective as a character is…fine. It’s not really unique enough to warrant a book full of it, I think; it works well enough as a part of Blood for Blood. (Guy with shitty dad becomes tough, slightly rebellious guy with inadequacy issues who obviously falls in love.)
Blood for Blood was better, as it didn’t have a clear direction after Wolf by Wolf‘s conclusion, so it keeps you moving forward as the objective changes and the broader world impacts the story. Again, as in Wolf by Wolf, the best parts were the interludes of backstory, although Luka’s is less interesting than Felix’s, who is in turn still not as interesting as Yael, so that was a teetering balance. The narrative also alternates perspective between Yael, Felix, and Luka, giving you a sense of where their perception of one another and different motivations push them apart or bring them together. I was back and forth over whether I liked this; it was good to see where they were all at internally, I guess, but Yael is just a more fully-realized character.
However, where this book feels like it definitely lets me down is in the lack of meaningful interaction between the three characters. Most of their trust or non-trust of one another is debated internally. They don’t have a lot of conversations or moments of choosing meaningfully to help or not help one another. I wanted to get invested in their connections to one another (and the climax of the book relies on that investment), and there was really little reason to. (Also, the “twist” in this book was also very obvious.)
These are the kind of follow-up books that make me question if I was too lenient on the first. (Maybe not. Flawed though the action of the book was, Wolf by Wolf gave us a lot of Yael’s story, which I did really like. Blood for Blood tried to lean on that emotional resonance to keep us engaged, even while it splintered that same resonance by putting us in other character’s heads.)
Iron to Iron:
Blood for Blood:
Reading: Nothing, since finishing Blood for Blood, but my internal toss-up over what to pick up next is between Snow Like Ashes, The Raven Boys, The School for Good and Evil, The Starlit Wood, and Illuminae, in case you were wondering. (My TBR as in physical books on a shelf that I already have is at 30+ right now, so this is what my brain is like whenever I’m not reading.)
Watching: Riverdale with one of my BFFs. Also rewatching Angel with my person.
Dreaming of: Lately my mind is cluttered with way too many projects/ideas that I want to do, so it’s overwhelming and I keep playing the Sims. I dream of winning the lottery so I can have time to do everything.
Planning: An Indigo order. Don’t judge me. It’s 50% off select teen books today.
Making: A songbook of all of my old songs. It’s a work in progress I’ve been chipping away at during guitar practice. I also want to make a recipe book, but that one I might actually share with other humans.
Stocking up on: Do I even need to say books? But I guess I also stock up on food. Like chocolate-covered peanut butter granola bars and cans of nice tomatoes and pizza dough. Because obviously.
Wishing for: Inspiration, honestly. I’m okay with the idea of sitting down to fiction as churning out work but it’s not as easy for me with poetry/song stuff.
Enjoying: Not being sleep deprived all of the time is a good life.
Trying: Dance cardio soon, hopefully. I’m also trying to finish Dragon Age: Inquisition.
Eating: Soup all day every day. Seriously, I keep making soup. February unproblems.
Goal Setting: Like I said, I have too many things I want to do so this is tricky! For now I’ve been trying to play more guitar, cook good meals, and make some plans with friends, which is working out.
Excited for: My next visit with my long-distance partner. We’re going to see a castle!
Learning: I am constantly learning makeup techniques because I am low-key addicted to YouTube makeup tutorials.
Lusting: Jealous of people’s Instagram-perfect book nooks and makeup battlestations, to be honest. I could use new bookshelves and a better desk, but that has to wait until the next time I move. Alas.
That’s all for now, book friends! Hopefully by next week, I’ll have picked some of those books to read and I will be happy with one of them, haha. Talk to you then!