November wrap-up // New name, a new favourite book & quarantine

November was an eclectic month for sure! It honestly feels like this month lasted for at least half a year and I’m not even exaggerating. Reading-wise November was a pretty great month, as I read twelve books and I found a new favourite! But life-wise, oh boy, oh boy, it was a mess.

Books

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I absolutely adored Nász és téboly by Gyula Böszörményi. It is the fourth book in the Baron Ambrózy’s Cases series, which I have already talked about in a blog post. I really can’t tell anything about this without spoiling things, so let’s just say that it was as good as the previous instalments!

I was blown away by the A Quick & Easy Guide to Queer & Trans Identities by Mady G. and J.R. Zuckerberg! I learnt so much and I consider myself quite educated on this topic. Plus, I was expecting black and white, comic-like art style after A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns, but this one was colourful and gorgeous! I absolutely adored it and would totally make everyone read it, as it covers a lot of subjects, it’s really thorough!

I found a new favourite book in The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune! I buddy read it with Hsinju @ Hsinju’s Lit Log and it was such a fantastic experience! I really can’t do justice with this little review, because it’s such a wonderful book, you’ve got to read it yourself to discover its merits. It’s an adult fantasy, but it’s so pure and wholesome! I loved the characters so much, my favourites were Talia, Phee and Zoe! If you want to read a thought-provoking story about finding courage and found family, this book is for you! Also, it was super funny, so I’d totally recommend it as a book to escape to when you’re feeling a little sad.

The Magic Fish by Trung Le Nguyen is a wonderful graphic novel I’d recommend to everyone! It’s so complex, my mind was blown away by all the details. The art style is gorgeous, and it has three colour-tones, one for each storyline: red for the present, yellow for Helen, the mom’s past and blue for fairy tales. It’s about a Vietnamese-American family, who bond through stories. And the tales I got to read through this book! I was literally gaping when I saw the second story, which is kind of a Vietnamese Cinderella (The Story of Tấm and Cám). It is brutal! So gory and cruel, gosh, it really took me by surprise! But it’s also about a thirteen-year-old kid, Tiến, who is gay and is struggling to come out to his parents due to language barriers.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Szer’usz világ by Gyula Böszörményi is the fifth book in the Baron Ambrózy’s Cases series, and while I loved it, it wasn’t as good as the previous ones. It was from another person’s perspective and she was sometimes too much. She is an amazing side character but not a great main character. The mystery aspect was on point as usual.

I flew through Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel adapted by Mariah Marsden and illustrated by Brenna Thummler! I absolutely adored it, the illustrations were beautiful, though I found the people’s eyes kind of unsettling (it reminded me of Coraline), everything else was great. The adaptation was also well done, it obviously didn’t have everything, but I found it satisfying. I would really recommend checking it out if you like L. M. Montgomery’s classic book!

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I had low expectations for Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee. They advertised it as the sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird, but it was actually written before TKaM, as kind of a first draft. And it shows because it has several inconsistencies. However, I surprisingly enjoyed it. The literary value is obviously not as high as with To Kill a Mockingbird, but I appreciated it being thought-provoking. My main takeaway from it is that we should always be open-minded, always listen to both sides of an argument and don’t rush to conclusions. It also shows that it’s never great to put people on a pedestal because we are all humans making mistakes. Unfortunately, I was disappointed in some characters, and not just Atticus. Atticus’ case is really interesting because we got to see his flaws through Jean Louise’s eyes, so his faulty beliefs are no surprise. However, I was disappointed in Jean more, because we thought that she is that super modern (well, according to 1950s standards) woman, who is really supportive of Black people, but she said several racist comments. Obviously, we have to face the fact that Harper Lee portrayed people from seventy years ago, so she was just showing the standard. Nonetheless, I still find it important to mention, because just because it was written in another time period, we still have to discuss it.

A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns by Archie Bongiovanni and Tristan Jimerson was exactly what I expected from. It was a really quick read, and it went through the basics of pronouns. I found it informative and would recommend it to anyone who wants to learn. I didn’t really like the art style though!

I’ll Be the One by Lyla Lee was a solid read. I found it super inspiring, and it definitely means a lot to loads of people, which is awesome! The main character, Skye is a breath of fresh air, she’s super driven but also kind. The whole story deals with fatphobia, as Skye auditions for a K-pop competition. It was so infuriating to read her mother’s and one of the judges’ comments on how fat girls should not dance! I am so glad Skye didn’t let anyone change herself. I liked the fact that bisexuality was discussed in this book, however, I felt like nonbinary people were excluded. Two of the characters told that they like both girls and boys, but being bi doesn’t mean that. It means that you’re attracted to more than one gender. I also hated the fact that it had several references to the Harry Potter series. I wish authors would stop mentioning it! I didn’t anticipate to see those references. When I read – for example – Leah on the Offbeat by Becki Albertalli, I knew that it had some, because I saw on Goodreads. But here? Total surprise. Apart from these, I quite enjoyed this book.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Anne of Avonlea by L. M. Montgomery was not really a memorable book, to be honest. I have nothing against it, except for the fact that it was just boring. I didn’t care about the new characters and I hated that it was mostly about the twins they took in. I really missed Anne and Gilbert moments!

Princess Princess Ever After by Katie O’Neill was an okay read. I didn’t find it groundbreaking or anything, but it could be awesome for younger kids to see themselves represented in graphic novels. It’s a really easy story, definitely targeted towards middle grade. I didn’t particularly like the art style, which was surprising as The Tea Dragon Society is the most gorgeous graphic novel I’ve ever seen.

I listened to Rick by Alex Gino via audiobook and it was a solid, quick read. I found it too simple, but it makes sense as it’s middle grade. I still can’t rate it higher as it was too short, didn’t really focus on one topic for too long. I wouldn’t recommend it for adults, but for kids and teenagers, I think it’s an amazing choice because it talks about gender and sexuality in a really thoughtful way.

Challenges

I kind of won and lost No buy, no borrow November?? Let me explain: I had six unread owned books at the start of November and now it’s down to one. So it’s not zero. Plus, I bought one book and I borrowed several. But I still call this challenge a win, because I actually kept my word and read all the books I owned at the beginning of the month, I just was so much quicker than I anticipated because I DNF’d three books (Where the Crawdads Sing, The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle and Neverwhere). So after I finished the other three books, I obviously had to borrow some books from the library, because otherwise I wouldn’t have had anything to read! The only purchase was a pre-order of A Barnum-rejtély by Gyula Böszörményi, which is the sixth book in the Baron Ambrózy’s Cases. I would have loved to read it before December started, but I started to get into a little reading slump, so my reading slowed down.

Movies and tv shows

I binged Dash and Lily in two days! I read the first two books a few years ago, and they were okay reads. Not super memorable, but entertaining. The same goes for the TV show! It was cute and lovely to see bookworm romance, but it was nothing extra. I’d still recommend it if you need a light-hearted show to binge.

I started watching the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina yesterday! I only watched three episodes, but I quite liked them! I originally saw this TV show at Caro @ The Bookcheshire Cat. I was going to save it for next Halloween, but then I saw that one of the characters, a trans guy, is played by a nonbinary actor, Lachlan Watson, so I had to check the show out! We stan nonbinary actors in media!

Music

Dodie released a new video called Cool Girl, and at first, I was hesitant, but then the more I listened to it, the more I loved it! Also, she’s coming out with a new album, Build a Problem, next year! I’m so excited!

I rediscovered BTS this month. I already knew them, but I haven’t listened to a lot of their songs. But now it changed! Some of their music became an all-time favourite, like Epiphany, Savage Love and Interlude: Shadow (apparently to two quizzes, Suga is my bias).

I also discovered Harry Styles‘ music! I didn’t really think that I would like his songs, but apparently, I do! My favourite from his album from last year is Golden and Adore You.

Blog

So, I made a lot of changes. First of all, I had a complete redesign! I changed the template, the fonts and most of the graphics. I really like how it all turned out! And then, yesterday, something clicked and I wanted to change my online name everywhere. It has to do with the fact that I no longer feel comfortable using my previous name, Fleur. It is the French version of my Hungarian name, which is hard for foreigners to pronounce, so I decided to go with Fleur, which basically means the same. However, I had quite a long journey with self-discovery this year, and at the end of summer, I realised I was nonbinary. And Fleur is really a feminine name, which is okay! Not every nonbinary has to be androgynous and gender-neutral, but it’s my preference. So, to cut the story short, I came up with a name that is really comfortable to use! I can’t change my name in real life (Hungary doesn’t allow unisex names…), but I can decide what I want to be called online. I still have to get used to it, because ever since I joined bookstagram in 2017, I was called Fleur.

About the new name, Morgan: it’s from an Old Welsh name, Morcant, which probably means sea-protector, sea-defender, or sailor/captain. I also thought of Morgan(a) le Fay from the Arthurian legends, whom I – for some reason – adore. As a kid, I loved movies about Arthur and his kingdom, but it’s been a really long time since I watched anything about them. Time to change this! I love the name Morgan, I don’t know, it just clicked immediately, when I thought of it.

I have only one concern: I really hope that my blog posts will appear in my followers’ WordPress Reader! So if you don’t see my posts, one solution is to unfollow and follow again, that probably will help! Another one is to add me on Feedly. I’ve started using it ever since I saw it in Caro’s post about her favourite blogging resources. I absolutely love Feedly, it’s so much easier to follow bloggers’ posts, as you can put everyone in categories. You can add me HERE by writing my whole blog title in the search bar.

Life

As I mentioned in the introduction, November was a mess. If you remember my previous wrap-up, you might recall that my father and I were sick. Well, it turned out it was COVID-19… So my parents and I were in quarantine, which was … an experience. I don’t mind being indoors, because I’m an introverted person who likes their peace at home. But I really need my alone time, and obviously, that was impossible with everyone at home. So it was not that pleasant, and I channelled all my frustration into redesigning my blog.

Cheers to you, if you managed to read all the way through! This was a mammoth of a blog post, so I really appreciate if you’re still here. I sincerely hope that December is going to be a better month because we all need some peace in our lives nowadays!

How was your November? Did you read or watch something extraordinary? How do you like my new blog design? Any opinion is deeply appreciated!

Morgan

19 thoughts on “November wrap-up // New name, a new favourite book & quarantine

  1. The new design is lovely!! You used your time well 😄 And love the new name 🖤

    I’ve been on the fence about picking up The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle– what made you DNF?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve never seen your blog before the redesign but I love this one! (we have the same theme ha ha). The colors are just beautiful!
    Wow, I’ve actually read a lot of the books in your wrap-up! well, maybe not that many…but I was surprised at the number. I read the House in the Cerulean Sea really recently as well! It was SO GOOD. For some reason, my favorite was Lucy. I dunno, I just enjoyed him. Also, I liked that Arthur is a phoenix (I like the creature, hence the online name).
    I really want to read the Magic Fish, it looks very interesting. I actually agree with you about ‘A quick and easy guide to they/them pronouns,’ it was useful and interesting but the art style wasn’t the best. And I really enjoyed Rick! Yeah, it was middle grade and it was short as well, but I thought it was good and that it’s nice to have ace representation.
    I love your new name! I’m glad you found a name that you liked and felt comfortable with!
    Oooh, I’m sorry you got covid, that’s no fun. Are you better now?
    Anyways, great post and I look forwards to checking out your blog some more!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!
      I am so glad you also loved The House in the Cerulean Sea! No wonder you like Lucy, his comments always made me laugh! Especially in the beginning, when Arthur was afraid of him. 😂
      I hope you end up enjoying The Magic Fish, it’s definitely one of my favourite graphic novels from this year!
      Thanks! I’m better now, my dad still is recovering, so it really takes a long time for older people to become healthy again. 😕

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ha ha yeah that was really funny I mean he’s from the city so it makes sense that he’s scared just because he didn’t know much but…if I were faced with a six year old saying spooky things like that I wouldn’t be that nervous. Then again, I’ve never been faced by that sooooo who knows.
        Okay, great! I don’t read many graphic novels just because I fly through them but I’ll have to check it out sooner or later.
        Well I’m glad you’re better now but I hope your dad recovers soon!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I adore the name Morgan!! ♥ I love the aesthetic of this post!! (: I’ve never tried Feedly but have heard a lot of bloggers rave about it..maybe I’ll give it a try!! Ugh I’m sorry to hear that you and your father had COVID, glad you’re feeling better now! I totally get ya, I love my family but sometimes I just need them to leave me the heck aloooone! Hope you have the best December!! ♥

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Seems like you had a great reading month! I keep hearing such great things about The House in the Cerulean Sea! I just started Dash & Lily and I’m having so much fun with it & the festive vibes 🎄 I hope you enjoy the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina! The last part is coming out at the end of the year, so now is the perfect time to start watching it 😄 (though the show can get very dark at some points!)

    Oh no, so sorry to hear that you were sick!! I really hope you and your dad will feel better soon!! 🙏💕

    Thank you for featuring my resources post! And I love the new design & name ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The House in the Cerulean Sea deserves all the hype. It was such a cosy and heartwarming read, perfect for this time of the year. 🥰
      I love Sabrina so much! Though sometimes it scares the heck out of me. 😂

      Thank you so much! 💚 Glad you like them!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow what a month, I hope you and your dad are recovering well! Congrats on the name, I liked reading the background of why you picked it. I’m so happy for you!

    I also didn’t think Harry Styles’ music would be for me, but his albums are pretty amazing. Looks like you had a pretty good reading month at least with everything going on. The House in the Cerulean Sea is such a cute, comforting book! Chauncey was probably my favorite character, which was yours? Hope you have a lovely December, Morgan! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you for the mention, Morgan, and thank you so much for buddy reading with me!! I’m super happy that The House in the Cerulean Sea is a new fave! It’s just so wholesome and adorable. 🥺

    I’m interested in reading I’ll Be the One and thanks for the content warning. Also, yayyy for the blog redesign!!

    Liked by 1 person

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