Skip to main content

A Month of Reading: August


Best reads of the past month:

Requiem for the Devil by Jeri Smith-Ready
This one hurt. Of course, I knew it was a sequel to Paradise Lost going in, so I don't really have grounds to complain. It's in turns beautiful, dark, and thoughtful. And I knew how it was going to end from page one. But it still hurt.
Size 12 is Not Fat by Meg Cabot
Okay, I think I've burned my way through all of her adult works currently in print. This one's a mystery and the first written in traditional format. Grab yourself a DoveBar and nestle in.
Just in Case by Meg Rosoff
Proof in print that How I Live Now was no fluke. Holy crow, this book is good. Rosoff's books are always painful, but this one is painful on an existential level. Think The Stranger meets Great Expectations. Keep 'em coming, Ms. Rosoff. Keep 'em coming.
New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
What to say? It was wonderful. It was awful. As good as its predecessor, but Very Different. A word to the wise: if you thought Twilight was in any way painful, you might want to read King Lear a couple times in quick succession before reading this sequel. Let's just say the excruciating level of anxiety caused by that first drop of blood doesn't abate in the slightest to the very last page. Wake me in a year when Eclipse is out. *sob*

Best rereads of the past month:

Archangel by Sharon Shinn
The first (and best) in the marvelous Samaria series. This was also our discussion book on Readerville this month and Ms. Shinn joined us!
Angel-Seeker by Sharon Shinn
Because even though it's the 5th book in the series, chronologically it takes place right after Archangel, and I'd never read them consecutively. I highly recommend it. Now, you will want to cry when you find that Rachel and Gabriel aren't the main characters. But you must be strong. Keep reading. Because they're there! And the scenes they're in are golden. Plus, lots of Obadiah. Never a bad thing. This one moves up in my estimation with each reread. Archangel will never be ousted from its place atop the Samaria hierarchy, but Angel-Seeker and Angelica are solid follow-ups and not to be missed.
Sword-Dancer, Sword-Singer, Sword-Maker, Sword-Breaker, Sword-Born, and Sword-Sworn by Jennifer Roberson
Ah hoolies, this six-volume swashbuckling series is loads of fun. All six are now out in three fat and juicy omnibus editions, and the cover art is mildly less horrific than the 1980s aerobics-instructors-disguised-as-swordfighters covers of the original editions. Told from the viewpoint of Tiger--the best sword-dancer in the South--as he meets Del--a Northern sword-singer who's not only as good as he is (possibly better), she's a woman. This fantasy series is unusual in many ways, not the least of which is its broad appeal to both sexes.
Beauty by Robin McKinley
Every night at bedtime, Will asks me to tell him the story of Beauty and the Beast. He's seen the movie and he expects certain elements of that version, so currently my telling of it resides somewhere between the movie and this book--my very favorite version of the tale. Of all the fairy tales this is the one where she saves him. Every night I finish the story and Will says excitedly, "Beauty broke the spell, Mommy!" And I smile in the dark and say, "You bet she did."

Comments

You Might Also Like

In the Beginning, or the First Ten Books I Reviewed on the Blog

Top Ten Tuesday is a bookish feature hosted at That Artsy Reader Girl
It's been awhile, but this topic was too good to pass up. When I thought about it, I genuinely could not recall which were the first ten books I actually reviewed here on the blog. So then, of course, I had to know. The thing is, I originally started the whole thing simply posting a once a month list of my favorite reads and rereads of the month. That went on for some time until lo and behold I went ahead and wrote and posted my first review on November 9, 2007. In hindsight, I probably should have known exactly which book pushed me over the edge into full fledged reviews. So this was a rather delightful journey back in time. Do you remember the first book you ever reviewed (in any forum) or what made you take the plunge? Here are my first ten (and I have to say, looking at this snapshot from the past, these remain some of my absolute favorite authors and a pretty spot-on array of the genres I read and love tod…

Blog Tour Giveaway | The Art of Theft by Sherry Thomas

Today marks the release of The Art of Theft―the fourth installment in Sherry Thomas's superb Lady Sherlock series. I'm delighted to be participating in the blog tour with a giveaway courtesy of Berkley. My emotions regarding this gender-swapped Sherlock Holmes retelling are tangled and fathoms-deep. These characters are incredibly dear to me, and I return to each book so very happy to see them and to read the breathtaking empathy with which Sherry Thomas writes about the realities of the lives of Victorian women and the truths that are so difficult to speak. Fans of Deanna Raybourn and Anna Lee Huber should definitely search out this series if you've not yet made its acquaintance. 

ABOUT THE BOOK
Charlotte finds herself in the midst of an all-new debacle: how does a renowned detective, a super-sneaky sleuth, steal a piece of artwork? The crime-solver has uncovered missing persons, and even nabbed a murderer or two—but when an old friend of Mrs. Watson appears on her doorste…

Blog Tour Giveaway | The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by Stephanie Butland

Today marks the release of Stephanie Butland's brand new novel The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae. I'm pleased to be taking part in the blog tour with a giveaway courtesy of St. Martin's Press. Earlier this year (on Beth's recommendation), I read Ms. Butland's thoughtful and quirky Lost for Words, and I immediately began looking forward to her next book. As you know, I read quite a lot of speculative and historical fiction. But I've had a streak of success with contemporaries this year, and Lost for Words was certainly one of them. If you are a fan of Jenny Colgan or Sophie Kinsella, I suggest you do yourself a favor and check these books out.



ABOUT THE BOOK
For fans of Josie Silver's One Day in December, The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae is a wholly original, charismatic, and uplifting novel that no reader will soon forget. Ailsa Rae is learning how to live. She’s only a few months past the heart transplant that—just in time—saved her life. Now, finally, she can b…