Sunday, September 6, 2020

33. The Obelisk Gate

By N.K. Jemisin (391 pp) Book 2 in the Broken Earth Trilogy. Glad I didn't start them until they were all finished. Already into Book 3. It's tough to sum up in a couple of sentences. The world has been broken by giant seismic event. Things do not look good. Our hero hasn't found her daughter, makes some friends-ish, and learns all kinds of stuff. Huge recommend on this series.

Friday, August 21, 2020

32. The Secret Place

By Tana French (518 pp ebook) I like Tana French books but they always get to a point where they feel long. But also I can't stop until I finish. In this one the murder takes place in a girls' school. I liked the detectives, too.

Sunday, August 16, 2020

31. The Fifth Season

By N.K. Jemisin (449 pp) This book is amazing! I could hardly put it down. I had insomnia and I was glad because I could get up and read some more. I don't even know how to describe it in a sentence or two. It's a fantasy set in a far future earth where the earth is unstable. Leaders rely on orogenes--people with power to control earth surface(ish) to calm earthquakes and volcanos. This is a severely lacking description. Better if you don't know what you're in for when you start. Highly recommended.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

30. The Headless Cupid

By Zilpha Keatley Snyder (203 pp) We've been making a loop of the free little libraries in our area mostly to drop off books but picking them up if we can't resist. I LOVED ZKS in middle school and haven't read this book since then so I was curious to see how it held up. It seems like all the old stuff has problematic racist and sexist stuff and this book is no different. The story concerns a newly blended family. The girl would rather live with her father but she can't because he doesn't have a wife to take care of her. There's a scene where the kids play a game of master and slave to get the kids to get some work done. GULP. But those issues aside, it's still a fun story. The family has just moved into an old house that may or may not be haunted. Creepy things keep happening.

Monday, August 10, 2020

29. Captain Vorpatril's Alliance

 By Lois McMaster Bujold (573 pp)

I enjoyed this book but I expected to love it. The Vorkosigan series gets so many good reviews and I loved Bujold's Chalion books. (Curse of Chalion and Paladin of Souls.) I think part of the problem is that this book is something like 15th in the series and even though it's about a side character, there's a lot of history. I got bogged down with all the characters and world-building backstory stuff. This book is about Ivan who gets mixed up with a overthrown family and accidentally gets a wife. I'm going to go back and start at the beginning of the series. 

Friday, July 17, 2020

28. Searching for John Hughes

By Jason Diamond (281 pp)

The subtitle is: Or Everything I Thought I Needed to Know about Life I Learned from Watching '80s Movies.

I came very close to DNF-ing this book. The title doesn't really reflect the pages within. It's really a memoir by a guy who had a troubled upbringing but also makes some terrible decisions. He is a huge John Hughes fan and gets this idea he is going to write a JH biography which other people encourage and/or go along with for some reason. He fails and this memoir results instead.

Saturday, July 11, 2020

27. Juliet, Naked

By  Nick Hornby (406 pp)

I wasn't sure about this book at first. It starts with an obsessive music fan dragging his girlfriend on a U.S. tour to visit sights associated with his favorite artist who dropped out of music under mysterious circumstances. But as the characters were introduced and the story developed I loved it. But then the ending went on too long and kinda fizzled. Overall I recommend for Nick Hornby fans. It was made into a movie that I am hoping to check out tonight. 

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

26. The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf

By Ambelin Kwaymullina (369 pp)

I am disappointed I didn't like this book more than I did. It's a YA set in a post-environmental disaster world. The author is Palyku people (Aboriginal Australia) and the story is influenced by that culture. A group of young people with abilities "illegals" are hiding in the forest and trying to stir up revolt against an evil government. It stared out amazing with the kickass leader captured by the government but about halfway through the timeline started jumping around and the story lost steam. Still worth a look for YA fans of this genre.

Saturday, June 27, 2020

25. Network Effect

By Martha Wells (350 pp)

MURDERBOT! It's one thing to like reading and another thing to have fun reading. These books are so much fun to read. I keep going back and re-reading bits that make me laugh. The books are set in a future world where corporations control exploration. The MC is a security robot who has disconnected its governing module and has actiony adventures while trying to sort out unfamiliar feelings now that it's free. It is one of my favorite characters in a long time.

Thursday, June 25, 2020

24. The Buried Giant

By Kazuo Ishiguro (317 pp)

I love this author. Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go are both phenomenal. I remember when this came out and the reviews talked about him writing a fantasy, I was intrigued. Sadly, I found this a long, hard slog. It's set in King Arthur times England and is about an elderly couple who set off on a journey to visit their son. There's a weird fog in the land that makes people have hazy memories so you're never quite sure what's going on. When I was done and looked back at the story, I could appreciate the things it had to say about memory, but overall, not one of my favorites.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

23. The Raven Prince

By Elizabeth Hoyt (400 ebook)

Another romance I found in my ebook collection. My ebook collection is even more out of control than my actual bookshelf. Super-competent heroine, cranky male lead, interesting developments involving a brothel. Fun read.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

19, 20, 21, 22 Murderbot Novellas

By Martha Wells (May 5 - May 13)

All Systems Red (227 ebook)
Artificial Condition (158 ebook)
Rogue Protocol (170 ebook)
Exit Strategy (179 ebook)

MURDERBOT! I don't understand why everyone isn't talking about these books. Maybe they are. It's not like I'm so well connected.

These books are set in the future where corporations dominate space exploration. Murderbot is a security robot, SecUnit, that has disabled its governing module and can act freely. SecUnit also has a lot of complex feelings about itself and its relationship to humans.

There is lots of action and intrigue. SecUnit is hilarious. My very highest recommendation. I'm reading the novel right now and trying to take my time because once it's gone I have to wait for the next one.