September & October Book of the Month Haul!

As teased in my last post, I've newly become a member of Book of the Month! Without getting overly specific, BotM is a monthly subscription box which offers you a choice of five new or early releases, as well as their backlist of previous boxes for you to choose from. You can pick a total of three books to put in your box each month, though I have yet to go past two. (I'm still feeling a little guilty from aforementioned book haul...)

Anyway, I thought I'd share with you today which books I chose for my first two boxes from BotM! I have loved most of my options so far, and had some difficulty making my final decisions. I'm looking forward to cracking open each of these soon, especially since they are all included in my 30 books in 30 days challenge to beat the slump!

September 2021 Box:

Beautiful Country

By Qian Julie Wang

I'd be a liar if I said this choice wasn't at least a little bit a cover buy. Also, I really do love a good memoir from time to time. I've been particularly in the mood for them lately. Most importantly, I'm making a point to pick up memoirs and that are written in voices distinctly different than my own.

Beautiful Country opens to Qian's move to New York at 7-years-old. Her parents made the transition from esteemed educators in China to "illegal immigrants" and manual labor in sweatshops of NY. I don't know much more than that, but I don't want to know much more going in to this memoir. I'm looking forward to sitting down with Qiang and learning her story and listening to a voice like many the world has tried to silence.

The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina

By Zoraida Córdova

This particular selection was actually featured in August's box, but I chose it as my add-on in September because the premise very much intrigued me. I don't need much more to want to pick up this book. It contains both magic and mysterious inheritances. I'm down for everything this book stands for so far.

From what I've gathered, the titiular character is the mysterious grandmother and matriarch of the Montoya family--one who has grown used to the odd occurences around their grandmother. As her life reaches an end, her descedents all gather to her whimsical home in hopes of receiving some answers to the odd phenomenons surrounding their childhoods. Rather than giving answers, Orquídea Divina transforms into a tree and bestows her gifts upon the family to discover for themelves.

October 2021 Box:

The Ex Hex

By Erin Sterling

Romance really isn't my thing at the best of times, but I'm willing to let things slide if the characters are all witches trying to break an accidental curse. This book sounded like the perfect cheesy break from heavier spooky reads this October!

As Aunt Elaine always said, "Don't mix magic and vodka," yet Vivi does just that while nursing a heartbreak from Rhys Penhallow. Joined with her coursin, Gwyn, they sort of maybe accidentally curse Rhys. This curse may also sort of maybe spiral out of control and curse the whole town in which they live, threatening to destroy the whole town and ruin life as they know it.

The Perishing

By Natashia Deón

I've been meaning to give speculative fiction a try, but I would be lying if I said I didn't find the genre intimidating. I've had A S King recommended many a time as the place to start, but I stumbled across The Perishing on BotM, and decided to start there instead. Classic Lori... you just can't take advice. I'm very excited, yet nervous going into this one.

All I know is that the main character, Lou, is a Black woman thrust into 1930's Los Angeles amidst some very mysterious circumstances. She has no recollection as to how she got here, but she also has the oddest sense that she's been through this very thing before. Her next step is finding out why she's here, and what she's meant to do in the meantime.

I said I'd do better last year in reading more diversely, and I really didn't. (Mind you, I didn't read much of anything in the past year diverse or otherwise.) I'm attempting to use Book of the Month as a means to broaden my reading scope. I know it's not a perfect method, as BotM chooses which voices to shine a spotlight on, and there will likely be less diverse books I'll want to pick sometimes, but it's a healthy start in the right direction.

I'm really looking forward to this adventure! I've come to the understanding that if a reader complains about reading the same stories over and over again, it's probably partially due to reading the same voice over and over again. I'm excited to push my boundaries and learn to better love and understand those around me as a lifelong endeavor!

Stay tuned for my reviews for each of these books and future BotM hauls!