Yee-haw! It’s a roundup!
I’ve been VERY busy the last two weeks, what with the end of the fiscal year at the library, ALA, kids, life, etc. and all, but I’ve carried my trusty Kindle with me everywhere, so I’ve still gotten a lot of reading in (even if I have fallen asleep with it in my hand several nights in a row now…). So rather than trying to write a full review for everything I read this month, you’re getting a quick and nasty (but in a good way, full of love) intro to what I read this month.
I know you’re all dying in anticipation for these reviews – I know I would be. So, here goes:
The second in a duology that started with This Savage Song, this was one of my most anticipated releases of the year. I was not disappointed, though the ending left me with a broken heart. In this world of darkness and shadows, the real question becomes: who are the real monsters? Schwab is an amazing world-builder, and her characters are gritty and ruthless (even if they don’t want to be). The (dark, dark) story follows Kate (a human) and August (a monster) as they negotiate the impossible world that pits them against one another as they try to save the broken souls of everyone around them.
This is also the second in a duology that started with Starflight, and I thought this was a fun follow-up. I liked that it focused on different characters, rather than just continuing the story of the first installment; but the characters are the same, so familiar. This has a little bit of a Firefly feel to it, with a ragtag group of misfits with prices on their heads flying around just trying to survive. There’s adventure and danger and adorable flying rodents and princesses. (There must always be princesses.) Let me just say this: there are SPACE PIRATES. Pirates. In space. That is all.
So, this book. I have had this trilogy sitting in my TBR tower for a while now, and I finally decided to tackle it. Oh, my heart. This book was so unique, so different from other things I’ve read, I fell instantly in love with it. For one thing, I ❤ the bad guy. Like, completely. He’s 100% dark and evil and murdery, but he’s an amazing character. Snaps to Bardugo for making that happen. I also like the heorine; she’s sassy, a little bit vulnerable, and makes mistakes. I like it when the main characters make mistakes, and then actually learn from them. Also, the setting is amazing.
I did a full review of this book over on my other blog before I packed up shop and moved, and if you want, you can read that one here. I can’t say enough good things about this series (a planned trilogy). The authentic period setting is very well done, and provides the perfect backdrop to the plot. The characters are fantastic; I especially love that there are several strong female characters who continually subvert the idea of a “proper lady” and show that their role in this world is just as important as their male counterparts. The relationships are fun, and there is a refreshing lack of romance, with a focus on action.
I went into this book with a little apprehension because I loved Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy to the godstars and back, and didn’t want to dislike something she had written. I was anxious for nothing. This book was as beautiful and melodious and magical as I could have hoped for. Taylor has a gift for wordweaving and creating portraits with words; I envy this talent. But I appreciate that I am the beneficiary of it. This book was a fairy tale; a dark, bloody, beautiful fairy tale complete with monsters and heroes. And even if I don’t love the cover (though I understand it’s symbolism), I am eagerly waiting part II.
OK. Call me crazy, but I absolutely love Clive Cussler. He’s this adorable, rosy-cheeked grandpa with awesome cars, and even awesomer stories. I fell in love with Dirk Pitt when I was in high school, but I have a particular love for the Fargo adventures. Sam and Remi are cool and clever, and are a great team. I like that Remi retains her femininity, yet can still pull the trigger to ice a bad guy, and I like even more that Sam knows his wife is completely capable of taking care of herself, yet still wants to protect her. The archaeological mysteries are right up my history-loving-heart’s alley, and I can’t get enough of them.
Fox and O’Hare are one of my guilty pleasures. No, Evanovich’s books aren’t strictly “literary gold”, but when I need to read something fun, or that makes me laugh, these books are a great choice. This one particularly features sparkles and sparkles of stolen diamonds along with a missing vial of live smallpox virus (gasp!) – and only Nick Fox and Kate O’Hare (along with their merry band of mismatched misfits) can save the world! A rollicking romp through Europe with sassy leads, a Snidely Whiplash-like bad guy, and lots of one-liners, I liked this installment in the series particularly.
So, there you have it – the June postmortem. I enjoyed all the titles, and a couple of them spoke to my soul, and fed it cheesecake.
And tomorrow: doo-do-doo! Top 10 Tuesday!
I want to take a minute to plug my library’s blog – it’s a little tiny baby blog, and we’re just getting started, but here’s the link to it. We’ll be talking about what life is like in a library (for all of you who have wondered about the secret library society, here’s your chance to peek under the cloak of invisibility…)