Sometimes I don’t feel like writing a full review for whatever reason, either because life is busy and I don’t have time, or because a book didn’t stir me enough. Sometimes, it’s because a book was so good that I just don’t have anything to say beyond that I loved it! Frequently, I’m just wayyy behind on reviews and am trying to catch up. For whatever reason, these are books that only have a few paragraphs of thoughts from me.
Appaloosa Summer by Tudor Robins – 3*
Growing up, books about girls and horses were totally my jam, and I still get nostalgic for them sometimes. I can’t remember how I came across this series exactly but it seemed like a good one to read at bedtime, because who doesn’t like to relax at the end of the day with some YA romance + horses?? Overall, that’s basically what I got, although I honestly could have used more horses and less YA romance. Still, I liked the main character, and I also liked that it seemed like Meg’s relationship with her mom actually improved throughout the story as she realized that her mom actually loved her and wanted what was best for her.
Wednesday Riders by Tudor Robins – 2.5*
Sadly, the sequel to Appaloosa Summer was not that great. The horse part, where Meg is helping train several young girls, wasn’t too bad, but the main thread was actually about Meg and her boyfriend and it’s this whole long super boring angsty thing. Basically, Appaloosa Summer takes place one summer and Wednesday Riders is the next summer. In between, Meg has been dating the guy she met in the first book. She’s been finishing her senior year in high school while Jared is completing his sophomore year in college (because yes, there’s a bit of weird age gap between them, not quite enough to be creepy but honestly almost), and Jared confesses to Meg that he was at a party and got a bit drunk and KISSED another girl! Meg flips out and we have to spend the entire rest of the book with her internal angst.
Like, I get it. Kissing another girl is 100% wrong and he 100% shouldn’t have done that. But he’s also not your husband, he’s your boyfriend. It just felt like Meg spent way too long trying to decide whether or not she could forgive Jared over this. She was super mean to him, refused to have any kind of conversation with him, and basically spent the entire summer pouting and having little temper tantrums, while at the same time flirting with another guy and not feeling guilty because she and Jared have broken up and anyway even if they hadn’t Jared owes her. It was SO boring.
I started to read the third book, which is actually about one of the girls Meg is helping learn to ride in Wednesday Riders, but I was kind of just not into and gave up about 10% in. I don’t really see myself bothering to come back to this series, and despite the fact that Jared and Meg made up in the end, unless Meg learns to stop being a spoiled, self-centered brat, I don’t have a lot of hope for their long-term relationship success.
Jill the Reckless aka The Little Warrior by P.G. Wodehouse – 4*
As always, Wodehouse is a delight, and his plots are also almost impossible to summarize. This wasn’t my favorite Wodehouse I’ve ever read, as it was a bit on the long side. Published in 1920, it’s still towards the early end of Wodehouse’s career. It’s interesting to see how his books are getting progressively funnier through time as he is more and more willing to let go of sensible plots in favor of hilarious coincidence. There are some very likable characters in this story (I was particularly fond of Freddy), and while this didn’t end up being a Wodehouse I want to read again and again, it was still very worth a one-time read.
Marlfox by Brian Jacques – 3.5*
The next volume in the Redwall series was a perfectly engaging read, but followed the basic pattern of all the Redwall books – heroes on a journey; meanwhile, Redwall is attacked! For some reason, the last few books Jacques has been a bit over-the-top in writing obnoxious little children Redwallers (aka dibbuns). I think their antics are supposed to add some levity to the stories, but they really just annoy me because they are rather bratty. Other than that, though, this was a fun addition to the series.
Judy Bolton mysteries – #21-#24 – by Margaret Sutton – 3.5*
I really enjoyed this batch of Judy Bolton mysteries, although I don’t have much to say about them. Judy continues to be a delightful character, although I could definitely use more Peter! They’re just so adorable together.