The books I read in April 2022 were all over the map. From ARCs of contemporary romance to darker fantasy sequels to a few hugely hyped bestsellers and more!
I went off-script right at the beginning of the month when NetGalley offered The Hookup Plan as a “read now” for April 1-3. Normally, I don’t stray much from my TBR and I save additional reads for the end of the month, but this was a must! It wound up setting the tone for the rest of the month because I added seven books that weren’t initially on my TBR for April (One Night With You, The Wonderland Trials, The Iron Queen, Delilah Green Doesn’t Care, This Might Get Awkward, Ninth House, and A Shadow in the Ember) and I also pushed three of my planned titles into May (Insurgent, Starsight, and The Art of Prophecy).
Overall, I read twenty books during the month of April. This was surprising to me, especially because of my vacation to Florida and the fact that I chose several very slow books to read throughout the month. However, I found several new favorites, which I’m super excited about! Keep on reading to see what I thought about the books I picked up during April!
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The 20 Books I Read in April 2022
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Books That Got a 5-Star Rating
The Atlas Six (The Atlas #1)
by olivie blake
The Alexandrian Society, caretakers of lost knowledge from the greatest civilizations of antiquity, are the foremost secret society of magical academicians in the world. Those who earn a place among the Alexandrians will secure a life of wealth, power, and prestige beyond their wildest dreams, and each decade, only the six most uniquely talented magicians are selected to be considered for initiation.
When the newest candidates are recruited by the mysterious Atlas Blakely, they are told they will have one year to qualify for initiation, during which time they will be permitted preliminary access to the Society’s archives and judged based on their contributions to various subjects of impossibility: time and space, luck and thought, life and death. Five, they are told, will be initiated. One will be eliminated. The six potential initiates will fight to survive the next year of their lives, and if they can prove themselves to be the best among their rivals, most of them will.Most of them.
One Night With You
by Laura Jane Williams
It’s his first night in London. And her last…
Ruby’s leaving London – she’s not running away from her ex per se, but an exciting opportunity in a new city has landed at the perfect time.
Nic is moving to London. After a bad break-up, he’s excited to see where big city life could take him.
When a chance meeting throws the pair of them together for just one night, it’s clear that this could be the start of something special. But there’s one problem: she’s leaving, and he’s just arriving. So, after tonight, they’ll never see each other again . . . will they?
From the international bestseller comes a story of two strangers, two cities, and one night that changes everything.
The Wonderland Trials (The Curious Realities #1)
by Sara Ella
All Alice Liddell wants is to escape her Normal life in Oxford and find the parents who abandoned her ten years ago. But she gets more than she bargained for when her older sister Charlotte is arrested for having the infamous Wonder Gene—the key to unlocking the curious Wonderland Reality.
Soon, Alice receives a rather cryptic invitation to play for Team Heart in this year’s annual—and often deadly—Wonderland Trials. Now she has less than twenty-four hours to find her way into Wonderland where nothing is impossible… or what it seems.
The stakes are raised when she discovers players go missing during the Trials each year. Will she and her team solve the clues and find the missing players? Or will betrayal and distrust win, leaving Alice alone in a world of her own? Follow the White Rabbit into this topsy-turvy fantasy where players become prey, a sip of the wrong tea might as well be poison, and a queen’s ways do not always lead one where they ought to go.
Books That Got a 4 or 4.5-Star Rating
The Hookup Plan (The Boyfriend Project #3)
by Farrah Rochon
Strong female friendships and a snappy enemies-to-lovers theme take center stage in this highly anticipated romantic comedy from the USA Today bestselling author of The Dating Playbook.
Successful pediatric surgeon London Kelley just needs to find some balance and de-stress. According to her friends Samiah and Taylor, what London really needs is a casual hookup. A night of fun with no strings. But no one—least of all London—expected it to go down at her high school reunion with Drew Sullivan, millionaire, owner of delicious abs, and oh yes, her archnemesis.
Now London is certain the road to hell is paved with good sex. Because she’s found out the real reason Drew’s back in Austin: to decide whether her beloved hospital remains open. Worse, Drew is doing everything he can to show her that he’s a decent guy who actually cares. But London’s not falling for it. Because while sleeping with the enemy is one thing, falling for him is definitely not part of the plan.
All Fired Up
by Dylan Newton
Zander Matthews wakes up every day determined to enjoy the present because he knows from his time in the Marines that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. But he’s never gotten over the beautiful woman who blew through town a year ago, then disappeared. And he doesn’t want to be hurt again. So they agree to a deal: he’ll help Imani fix up her grandmother’s house as long as they stay firmly in the friend zone. As a successful book publicist, Imani Lewis works night and day to promote her authors. It’s her dream job, but she’s become a total workaholic. So when her grandmother invites her to stay for the summer as she recovers from surgery, Imani happily agrees. But being back in the same small town as her one-night stand may not be quite the relaxing break she envisioned… Whether it’s repairing tiles in his ceramics studio, dodging nosy neighbors, or soothing the most obnoxious parrot ever, Zander never fails to make Imani laugh. And soon their friendly banter is turning ever flirtier. But since Imani’s stay is temporary and Zander can’t be tied to anything beyond the most tenuous plans, will she be able to handle it when things get all fired up? After one wild night together, two complete opposites plan to stay firmly in the friend zone, but life has other plans in this delightful romantic comedy, perfect for fans of Emily Henry and Abby Jimenez.
Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore
A gleeful and exhilarating tale of global conspiracy, complex code-breaking, high-tech data visualization, young love, rollicking adventure, and the secret to eternal life–mostly set in a hole-in-the-wall San Francisco bookstore.
The Great Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon out of his life as a San Francisco Web-design drone–and serendipity, sheer curiosity, and the ability to climb a ladder like a monkey has landed him a new gig working the night shift at Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. But after just a few days on the job, Clay begins to realize that this store is even more curious than the name suggests. There are only a few customers, but they come in repeatedly and never seem to actually buy anything, instead checking out impossibly obscure volumes from strange corners of the store, all according to some elaborate, long-standing arrangement with the gnomic Mr. Penumbra. The store must be a front for something larger, Clay concludes, and soon he’s embarked on a complex analysis of the customers’ behavior and roped his friends into helping to figure out just what’s going on. But once they bring their findings to Mr. Penumbra, it turns out the secrets extend far outside the walls of the bookstore.
With irresistible brio and dazzling intelligence, Robin Sloan has crafted a literary adventure story for the twenty-first century, evoking both the fairy-tale charm of Haruki Murakami and the enthusiastic novel-of-ideas wizardry of Neal Stephenson or a young Umberto Eco, but with a unique and feisty sensibility that’s rare to the world of literary fiction. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore is exactly what it sounds like: an establishment you have to enter and will never want to leave, a modern-day cabinet of wonders ready to give a jolt of energy to every curious reader, no matter the time of day.
Mister Impossible (The Dreamer Trilogy #2)
by Maggie Stiefvater
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Raven Boys, a mesmerizing story of dreams and desires, death and destiny.
The stakes have never been higher as it seems like either the end of the world or the end of dreamers approaches.
Ronan, Hennessy, and Bryde are dreamers; Ronan’s dreams always seem to end in random destruction, using up the power of the ley lines he cannot even sense; Hennessy makes multiple copies of herself, dreaming them into reality in search of her own fragile identity, and Bryde dreams of power and reordering his companions and the world to his own specifications; their families and duplicates are the collateral damage of their dreams–and meanwhile they are hunted by the “Moderators,” led by Carmen Farooq-Lane and the “Visionary” Liliana, determined to destroy the dreamers and save the world.
Delilah Green Doesn’t Care (Bright Falls #1)
by Ashley Herring Blake
A clever and steamy queer romantic comedy about taking chances and accepting love—with all its complications—by debut author Ashley Herring Blake.
Delilah Green swore she would never go back to Bright Falls—nothing is there for her but memories of a lonely childhood where she was little more than a burden to her cold and distant stepfamily. Her life is in New York, with her photography career finally gaining steam and her bed never empty. Sure, it’s a different woman every night, but that’s just fine with her.
When Delilah’s estranged stepsister, Astrid, pressures her into photographing her wedding with a guilt trip and a five-figure check, Delilah finds herself back in the godforsaken town that she used to call home. She plans to breeze in and out, but then she sees Claire Sutherland, one of Astrid’s stuck-up besties, and decides that maybe there’s some fun (and a little retribution) to be had in Bright Falls, after all.
Having raised her eleven-year-old daughter mostly on her own while dealing with her unreliable ex and running a bookstore, Claire Sutherland depends upon a life without surprises. And Delilah Green is an unwelcome surprise…at first. Though they’ve known each other for years, they don’t really know each other—so Claire is unsettled when Delilah figures out exactly what buttons to push. When they’re forced together during a gauntlet of wedding preparations—including a plot to save Astrid from her horrible fiancé—Claire isn’t sure she has the strength to resist Delilah’s charms. Even worse, she’s starting to think she doesn’t want to…
As Seen on TV
by Meredith Schorr
Fans of the Hallmark Channel and Gilmore Girls will adore this delightful rom‑com about a city girl who goes in search of small-town happiness, only to discover life—and love—are nothing like the TV movies.
Emerging journalist Adina Gellar is done with dating in New York City. If she’s learned anything from made-for-TV romance movies, it’s that she’ll find love in a small town—the kind with harvest festivals, delightful but quirky characters, and scores of delectable single dudes. So when a big-city real estate magnate targets tiny Pleasant Hollow for development, Adi knows she’s found the perfect story—one that will earn her a position at a coveted online magazine, so she can finally start adulting for real . . . and maybe even find her dream man in the process.
Only Pleasant Hollow isn’t exactly “pleasant.” There’s no charming bakery, no quaint seasonal festivals, and the residents are more ambivalent than welcoming. The only upside is Finn Adams, who’s more mouthwatering than the homemade cherry pie Adi can’t seem to find—even if he does work for the company she’d hoped to bring down. Suddenly Adi has to wonder if maybe TV got it all wrong after all. But will following her heart mean losing her chance to break into the big time?
Meant to Be Mine
by Hannah Orenstein
What if you knew exactly when you’d meet the love of your life? Edie Meyer knows. When her Grandma Gloria was a young woman, she had a vision of the exact day she would meet her soul mate—and then Grandpa Ray showed up.
Since then, Gloria has accurately predicted the day every single member of the family has met their match. Edie’s day arrives on June 24, 2022, when she’s twenty-nine years old. She has been waiting for it half her life. That morning, she boards an airplane to her twin sister’s surprise engagement, and when a handsome musician sits beside her, she knows it’s meant to be.
But fate comes with more complications than Edie expected and she can’t fight the nagging suspicion that her perfect guy doesn’t have perfect timing. After a tragedy and a shocking revelation rock Edie’s carefully constructed world, she’s forced to consider whether love chooses us, as simple as destiny, or if we choose it ourselves.
The Hawthorne Legacy (The Inheritance Games #2)
by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Intrigue, riches, and romance abound in this thrilling sequel to the New York Times bestselling The Inheritance Games
The Inheritance Games ended with a bombshell, and now heiress Avery Grambs has to pick up the pieces and find the man who might hold the answers to all of her questions—including why Tobias Hawthorne left his entire fortune to Avery, a virtual stranger, rather than to his own daughters or grandsons.
Thanks to a DNA test, Avery knows that she’s not a Hawthorne by blood, but clues pile up hinting at a deeper connection to the family than she had ever imagined. As the mystery grows and the plot thickens, Grayson and Jameson, two of the enigmatic and magnetic Hawthorne grandsons, continue to pull Avery in different directions. And there are threats lurking around every corner, as adversaries emerge who will stop at nothing to see Avery out of the picture—by any means necessary.
With nonstop action, aspirational jet-setting, Knives Out-like family intrigue, swoonworthy romance, and billions of dollars hanging in the balance, The Hawthorne Legacy will thrill Jennifer Lynn Barnes fans and new readers alike.
This Might Get Awkward
by Kara McDowell
Sophie Kinsella meets Sarah Dessen in the most hilarious, romantic book of the summer about a girl with social anxiety and the boy who refuses to let her hide herself away.
Seventeen-year-old Gemma’s favorite kind of beach is an empty one. Social interactions are too much for her to handle. She always says the wrong thing—if she manages to say anything at all. She can’t even bring herself to speak to her longtime crush, Beau Booker, without losing sleep over her own awkwardness.
During a solo outing to her favorite beach, Gemma realizes—to her horror—that the popular kids from school have shown up to throw a party. Before she can sneak away (and possibly puke behind her car) Gemma is pulled into the action and ends up talking to Beau, who asks her to pretend that they’re “close.” Gemma is too flustered and flattered to refuse, and mostly, she’s wondering why Beau is talking to her at all . . . right up until the moment when he falls off the boat, hits his head, and ends up in a coma.
After rescuing Beau from the water, Gemma is mistaken for Beau’s girlfriend by his friends and family, including his mysterious older brother, Griff, who has returned to town after a year away. Gemma tries to correct the record, but her social anxiety (and a nosy reporter) gets in the way at every turn. Before she knows it, she’s in too deep to backtrack. And when Beau’s warm, boisterous family pulls Gemma into their orbit, she realizes how much she wants to keep them in her life.
For the first time, Gemma has everything she’s ever wanted: friends, big family dinners, and Griff—a boy who she can be herself around. But how can she embrace her new dream life when everything is built on a lie?
Books That Got a 3 or 3.5-Star Rating
The Subtle Knife (His Dark Materials #2)
by Philip Pullman
Lost in a new world, Lyra finds Will—a boy on the run, a murderer—a worthy and welcome ally. For this is a world where soul-eating Specters stalk the streets and witches share the skies with troops of angels.
Each is searching—Lyra for the meaning of Dark Matter, Will for his missing father—but what they find instead is a deadly secret, a knife of untold power. And neither Lyra nor Will suspects how tightly their lives, their loves, and their destinies are bound together… until they are split apart.
The Iron Queen (The Iron Fey #3)
by Julie Kagawa
My name is Meghan Chase.
I thought it was over. That my time with the fey, the impossible choices I had to make, the sacrifices of those I loved, was behind me. But a storm is approaching, an army of Iron fey that will drag me back, kicking and screaming. Drag me away from the banished prince who’s sworn to stand by my side. Drag me into the core of conflict so powerful, I’m not sure anyone can survive it.
This time, there will be no turning back.
Covet (Crave #3)
by Tracy Wolff
I may have reached my breaking point. As if trying to graduate from a school for supernaturals isn’t stressful enough, my relationship status has gone from complicated to a straight-up dumpster fire. Oh, and the Bloodletter has decided to drop a bomb of epic proportions on us all… Then again, when has anything at Katmere Academy not been intense?
And the hits just keep coming. Jaxon’s turned colder than an Alaskan winter. The Circle is splintered over my upcoming coronation. As if things couldn’t get worse, now there’s an arrest warrant for Hudson’s and my supposed crimes—which apparently means a lifetime prison sentence with a deadly unbreakable curse.
Choices will have to be made…and I fear not everyone will survive.
Our Dark Duet (Monsters of Verity #2)
by VE Schwab
The bestselling sequel–and conclusion–to Victoria Schwab’s instant #1 New York Times bestseller This Savage Song.
Kate Harker is a girl who isn’t afraid of the dark. She’s a girl who hunts monsters. And she’s good at it. August Flynn is a monster who can never be human. No matter how much he once yearned for it. He has a part to play. And he will play it, no matter the cost.
Nearly six months after Kate and August were first thrown together, the war between the monsters and the humans is a terrifying reality. In Verity, August has become the leader he never wished to be, and in Prosperity, Kate has become the ruthless hunter she knew she could be. When a new monster emerges from the shadows–one who feeds on chaos and brings out its victim’s inner demons–it lures Kate home, where she finds more than she bargained for. She’ll face a monster she thought she killed, a boy she thought she knew, and a demon all her own.
A gorgeously written dark fantasy from New York Times-bestselling author Victoria Schwab, and one to hand to fans of Holly Black, Laini Taylor, and Maggie Stiefvater.
Among the Beasts & Briars
by Ashley Poston
Ashley Poston, acclaimed author of Heart of Iron, returns with a dark, lush fairy tale-inspired fantasy for fans of Sara Raasch and Susan Dennard.
Cerys is safe in the Kingdom of Aloriya. Here there are no droughts, disease, or famine, and peace is everlasting. It has been this way for hundreds of years, since the first king made a bargain with the Lady who ruled the forest that borders the kingdom. But as Aloriya prospered, the woods grew dark, cursed, and forbidden.
Cerys knows this all too well: When she was young, she barely escaped as the woods killed her friends and her mother. Now Cerys carries a small bit of the curse–the magic–in her blood, a reminder of the day she lost everything.
As a new queen is crowned, however, things long hidden in the woods descend on the kingdom itself. Cerys is forced on the run, her only companions a small and irritating fox from the royal garden and the magic in her veins. It’s up to her to find the legendary Lady of the Wilds and beg for a way to save her home.
But the road is darker and more dangerous than she knows, and as secrets from the past are uncovered amid the teeth and roots of the forest, it’s going to take everything she has just to survive.
The Queen’s Resistance (The Queen’s Rising #2)
by REbecca Ross
For fans of Red Queen and Grave Mercy comes the captivating sequel to the Renaissance France-inspired epic fantasy The Queen’s Rising.
Brienna is a mistress of knowledge and is beginning to settle into her role as the daughter of the once disgraced lord, Davin MacQuinn. Though she’d just survived a revolution that will return a queen to the throne, she faces yet another challenge: acceptance by the MacQuinns.
But as Queen Isolde Kavanagh’s closest confidant, she’ll have to balance serving her father’s House as well as her country.
Then there’s Aodhan Morgan, formerly known as Cartier variste, who is adjusting to the stark contrast between his pre-rebellion life in Valenia and his current one as lord of a fallen House. As he attempts to restore the Morgane name, he let his mind wander–what if he doesn’t have to raise his House alone? What if Brienna could stand by his side?
But Brienna and Cartier must put their feelings aside, as there are more vital tasks at hand–the Lannons’ trial, forging alliances, and ensuring that no one halts the queen’s coronation. Resistance is rumbling among the old regime’s supporters, who are desperate to find a weakness in the rebels’ forces.
And what makes one more vulnerable than love?
Books That Got a 2 or 2.5-Star Rating
A Shadow in the Ember (Flesh and Fire #1)
by Jennifer L Armentrout
#1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout returns with book one of an all-new, compelling Flesh and Fire series – set in the beloved Blood and Ash world.
Born shrouded in the veil of the Primals, a Maiden as the Fates promised, Seraphena Mierel’s future has never been hers. Chosen before birth to uphold the desperate deal her ancestor struck to save his people, Sera must leave behind her life and offer herself to the Primal of Death as his Consort.
However, Sera’s real destiny is the most closely guarded secret in all of Lasania – she’s not the well protected Maiden but an assassin with one mission – one target. Make the Primal of Death fall in love, become his weakness, and then… end him. If she fails, she dooms her kingdom to a slow demise at the hands of the Rot.
Sera has always known what she is. Chosen. Consort. Assassin. Weapon. A specter never fully formed yet drenched in blood. A monster. Until him. Until the Primal of Death’s unexpected words and deeds chase away the darkness gathering inside her. And his seductive touch ignites a passion she’s never allowed herself to feel and cannot feel for him. But Sera has never had a choice. Either way, her life is forfeit – it always has been, as she has been forever touched by Life and Death.
Ninth House (Alex Stern #1)
by Leigh Bardugo
The mesmerizing adult debut from #1 New York Times bestselling author Leigh Bardugo.
Galaxy “Alex” Stern is the most unlikely member of Yale’s freshman class. Raised in the Los Angeles hinterlands by a hippie mom, Alex dropped out of school early and into a world of shady drug dealer boyfriends, dead-end jobs, and much, much worse. By age twenty, in fact, she is the sole survivor of a horrific, unsolved multiple homicide. Some might say she’s thrown her life away. But at her hospital bed, Alex is offered a second chance: to attend one of the world’s most elite universities on a full ride. What’s the catch, and why her?
Still searching for answers to this herself, Alex arrives in New Haven tasked by her mysterious benefactors with monitoring the activities of Yale’s secret societies. These eight windowless “tombs” are well-known to be haunts of the future rich and powerful, ranging from Jodie Foster to George W. Bush. But their occult activities are revealed to be more sinister and more supernatural than any paranoid imagination might conceive.
Oh, I’m going to have to put One Night With You on my TBR! It sounds wonderful. Nice list of books and so many different genre’s
My reading has come to a bit of a standstill for now but I really liked looking through this list as I would like to read quite a few of them!
What a fabulous month you had Stephanie! I have several of these books on my TBR list (I just received the audiobook galley for All Fired Up this morning). I hope you have a wonderful May!
You had an amazing month! I read Delilah Green Doesn’t Care last month as well and loved it.
You just have such a nice blog! Love the style. You had an awesome reading month! Lots of these sound so good as well 🙂 thanks for sharing!
20 books?! Wow, that’s impressive haha! I’m really excited to read This Might Get Awkward so I’m so glad to hear that you enjoyed it, and I’ve added Meant To Be Mine and All Fired Up to my tbr too – I love a good contemporary! Thank you so much for sharing x
Oh my, these sound like amazing books! They all look very interesting and I’ll definitely read The Wonderland Trials! 😍 Thank you so much for sharing. x Penny | http://www.whatdidshetype.com
I really loved one night with you .Meant to be mine was good but I felt like the ending was SUPER rushed.
Twenty books in April? Wow. By the way, I was almost chortling too, reading your review of One Night With You
You had a great month! So many varied books. My reading is slowly getting back up to speed 😄
Firstly, 20 books in April, WHAAAAT? And secondly, you are bad for my bank balance. I have two new books that are going into my shopping basket: Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore, and The Wonderland Trials, because anything related to Alice in Wonderland is definitely a must read. Thank you, Stephanie, and congratulations on a phenomenal reading achievement in April!
Wow, you always impress and inspire me with all the books you’re able to read in a month! These book recommendations are amazing. Will check these out and pull the trigger and order a few to make reading more of a priority this month.
Wow! So many book options! The Wonderland Trials sounds totally up my alley. Love how you grouped these by star ratings too! Very helpful!
Wow, I need a sip of your reading motivation, so many books! I am definitely interested in Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore as it sounds super interesting and out of the norm of what I typically read. As Seen on TV is totally a book I would read– it sounds super cute! Thanks for sharing all these!
Ooh so many books to add to my TBR list! Really looking forward to reading the Hookup Plan, as it got a high rating from you!