Thursday, February 2, 2017

January Reads (and the return of the dead)

It's January, which means its time to resurrect my blog, like I do after I give up on it every fall. Though perhaps this year I'll manage to make it to December. We can dream, can't we? For those of you who don't know (are any of you still out there reading this thing?) I became self-employed in December. I have a little more free time now (having no commute is a wonderful thing). I'm trying to read more. Initially my goal is three books a month, which may sound like pennies to some of you. But that's an increase for me!

So here we go.

Over the past few years, I've been writing historical fantasy, so it only seemed appropriate to start the year with one. I've had GRAVE MERCY on my list for a while now, and I finally read it. Obviously I'm now wishing I read it sooner. All I knew going into this one was that it had assassin nuns (but really...what more do you need to know?). I highly recommend this read if you like badass leading ladies who are still trying to figure out who they are. 

So, Leigh Bardugo is one of my all-time favs. At a party last year, someone asked me what my favorite book was, and I said the SHADOW AND BONE series. Well, this series has now outranked it, and the sequel is just as good--if not better--than the first. YA heist? Diverse cast? Broken teens trying to make their way in the world? Magic? Yes. Absolutely. I'm in. Take my money.

We get Wylan's perspective in this book (missing from book one), and Leigh does some interesting things with what we think we knew about Grisha magic. Plus some cameos from SHADOW AND BONE. Just a note, you DO NOT have to read SHADOW AND BONE in order to read this book. Also, here's a picture of me with Leigh Bardugo, because you know you wanted to see it.

And yes, all those books on the table were the ones I brought. When your favs come to town, you get some signed for your friends.

I read a historical fantasy and a fantasy, this one is pure historical. Katy Upperman recommended it to me, and her recs never disappointed. I read BETWEEN SHADES OF GRAY the summer before last, so I knew I had to get emotionally prepared for it, and what an interesting month to be reading about refugees. This novel follows the journey of four teenagers fleeing for safety in the midst of the Soviet advance--including one who is beyond unlikeable. It's a hard read, but very much worth it, especially if you enjoy historical fiction.

What did you read in January?