Heartbeat Monthly (34): April 2023 + Book Events

Posted by Jessi (Geo) on May 7, 2023 | 2 Comments


April haul


  • Spindrifts by A.M. Mawhiney
  • In the Lives of Puppets by TJ Klune (SIGNED)
  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone set by LitJoy
  • Lies We Sing to the Sea by Sarah Underwood (Illumicrate)
  • Seven Faceless Saints by M.K. Lobb (Fairyloot)
  • The Last Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff, German special edition
  • Owlcrate TBR jar
  • LotR Rivendell collector’s bowl (Owlcrate)
  • Owlcrate “The Chosen Ones” box
  • Owlcrate “The Dark Heart of the Forest” box


  • The Scourge Between Stars by Ness Brown (THANK YOU TOR!)
  • Jacks wanted poster (giveaway)

April Wrap Up

Books I read

  1. Waking Fire by Jean Louise 🎧 – DNF
  2. The Witch and the Vampire by Francesca Flores 🎧 – DNF
  3. The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes 🎧 – ★
  4. A Door in the Dark by Scott Reintgen  🎧 – ★★½
  5. The Isles of the Gods by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner – ★★★★
  6. Find Him Where You Left Him Dead by Kristen Simmons – ★★★★½
  7. Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim 🎧 -★
  8. A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow 🎧 – ★★★★
  9. A Mirror Mended by Alix E. Harrow 🎧 – ★★★
  10. Unearthed by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner 🎧 – ★★★★
  11. The Scourge Between Stars by Ness Brown – ★★★★½
  12. Sister, Maiden, Monster by Lucy A. Snyder 🎧 – ★★★
  13. Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt 🎧 – ★★★★★
  14. Undying by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner 🎧 – ★★★★
  15. Painted Devils by Margaret Owen – ★★★★
  16. Hunterland by Dana Claire 🎧 – DNF
  17. In the Lives of Puppets by T.J. Klune 🎧 – ★★★★½
  18. The Six Deaths of the Saint by Alix E. Harrow – ★★★★
  19. To Each This World by Julie Czerneda 🎧 – DNF

Pages read: 5,090
Average rating: 3.5
Favorite book read in April: Remarkably Bright Creatures
Least favorite book read in April: Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes

Books I reviewed

Other posts


What I’ve been up to this month

The second weekend in April I took a trip by myself down to Tennessee and stayed in a lakeside condo. It was AMAZING! I love solo trips every once in a while to get away and have some peace and quiet. The condo was glorious and I got to sit around reading, blogging, and drinking, with zero responsibility for 3 days. I also spent some time in the little private gym they had on site. It was still pretty cold, which is a bummer because I really wanted to get out and enjoy the lake. I didn’t get much sunshine. I did get to spend a little time lakeside on my last day right before I left. During my trip I was finally able to catch up on reviews, which is the best feeling ever! I started this year a whopping 50 reviews behind and now I am completely caught up and can review books as soon as I finish. *heavy sigh of relief*

I also went to book club for the first time in quite a few months! (Our book club is @cincygrammers_bookclub on Insta and we usually meet at the Cinci Joseph Beth!) April’s pick was Remarkably Bright Creatures. The line at the library was too long, so I went ahead and spent an Audible credit on it. And I’m glad I did, because I absolutely loved it! The audiobook is fantastic, and the narrator they picked for Marcellus was PERFECT. Book club was super fun! It’s grown a LOT since the last time I went. I think before there were maybe 10 of us tops, and this time there were 21! It was pretty chaotic, and I didn’t know most of them, but it was really cool to see a few of my book club friends that I hadn’t seen in a long time! I also want to say, there were only about 5 people that didn’t read the book; and out of the many of us that did, EVERY SINGLE PERSON liked it!! That’s really….remarkable. Hur hur. (Sorry, I’m lame.) It’s rare for us to all agree on a book, and even more rare that *I* enjoy a super hyped book that the majority likes (the black sheep life, yo). Whoop whoop!

I’m the one at the very back right!

In addition to book club and the Ross/Rogerson signing, I also got to see TJ Klune on the 28th – you can see my recap HERE!

Ross & Rogerson signing

On April 5th I went down to the Cinci Joseph Beth to see Rebecca Ross and Margaret Rogerson! The main focus of the event was Divine Rivals. Rebecca said the book was inspired by The Lovely War (the audio is great for anyone wanting to read it). She talked about the names the book went through – the first one was something long and hard to say and I have NO idea what she said, lol. The second was Iris at the Front (which ended up being the series name), but when they made a cover to fit the name it didn’t look like fantasy (looked like a contemp) so they scrapped it.

I actually took notes this time, so I got some fun facts! Rebecca used to play cello and her critique partner is Isabel Ibañez. She watches Love Island while signing tip in pages (Margaret said she watches quantum physics documentaries because the existential fear makes her sign faster, lmao!) and she writes by hand instead of computer when she has writers’ block.

Adam went with me and we ate at Brontë Bistro before the signing, and it took longer than expected so I was actually late getting to the panel. Oops. (It was worth it though because they made me a Nutella martini, which used to be on their menu until they revamped…so I hadn’t had it in about a year!)

Current obsessions

Movies: The only new movie I got to see was Dungeons & Dragons, and it was good but I didn’t love it. I enjoyed it while we were watching but it’s not the kind of movie that I care to see twice.

TV: Shadow & Bone, we binged season 1 again so we can finally watch season 2! Season 2 was okay, but I was a little disappointed in it. It wasn’t nearly as good as the first.

Music: I’m still on my nostalgia kick!

Food: I discovered a sushi restaurant nearby that is delicious! (Embarrassingly enough, it was my first time ever getting sushi from an actual sushi place. I just started eating sushi within the past couple of years and have only ever bought it from Kroger.)

Games: I still haven’t been in the mood for games :(

Apps: I am obsessed with the YouCam photo editing app! I ended up buying a year of it because it’s so useful. I’ve been trying to be more active on our grooming shop’s Facebook page, so I’ve been taking a lot of photos of my finished grooms. Half the time there’s hair on the table, or I forget to pickup a tool and it’s in the photo, or there’s ONE LITTLE HAIR popped out that drives me bonkers – YouCam is absolutely perfect for that! I looove the removal tool, it’s so handy to clean up my photos before I post them. Nothing looks more tacky than tools and a bunch of hair clumps on the table because I forget to clean it off before taking photos. Plus my fancy new phone camera shows every single little stray hair that’s not visible to the naked eye XD



  • Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros
  • Piñata by Leopoldo Gout
  • Starling House by Alix E. Harrow
  • Dragonfall by L.R. Lam
  • Seven Faceless Saints by M.K. Lobb
  • House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland


See anything you like? What did YOU get last month? Link me up!

Jessi (Geo)

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