April 2018 Wrap-up

Wrap-up time! That’s right, it’s that time of the month again when we tell you what books we’ve read and maybe how we felt about them, and you pretend that you care.

Maybe you won’t even pretend. Maybe you’ll even tell us that you don’t care. Why would you do such a thing? Now look what you’ve done, Hiu’s crying again. For fuck sake Hiu, pull yourself together.

Anyway… books.

Bookishly bookily books.


cabtwit (1)

Hiu

I read a whole bunch this month, which I’m putting down to my new glasses. They aren’t even reading glasses, they’re the other kind. See, I accidentally bought the tortoise-shell frames, and when they arrived they looked more like leopard print. As a result, I look like some bastard cross between a hipster and a cougar, and so I’ve locked myself in my house all month so that no-one can make fun of me.

Anyway, the books… This month I managed to read:

  • One Way by S.J. Morden
  • Prayers in Steel by Michael McClung
  • Grey Sister by Mark Lawrence
  • Age of Assassin by R.J Barker
  • A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers: I loved this book, such an awesome, wholesome slice of life read.
  • Ankaran Immersion by Will Weisser: This one had an awesome setting, review to come soon!
  • Broken Homes by Ben Aaronovitch
  • The Heart of Stone by Ben Galley
  • Boy of Dreams by Nathan Van Hoff: This was a review request I’ve had in the wings for a while. Old-fashioned good vs evil farmboy fantasy. Review will be up in a few weeks.
  • The Empire of the Dead by Phil Tucker: read for the Resident Author bookclub over on /r/Fantasy, an awesome Sumerian-inspired story with demi-god protagonists
  • Armistice by Lara Elena Donnelly: The sequel to book bae Amberlough, which I was lucky enough to receive an ARC copy for. It didn’t disappoint, review coming soon.

For next month I’ve got a few review copies I wanna finish, as well as one very elusive book…

  • Iron Gold by Pierce Brown: I know, I know… I really need to get to this.
  • Ravencry by Ed McDonald: the sequel to the excellent Blackwing, reading this now.
  • Lost Gods by Micah Yongo: I’m so excited for this book, it has a really interesting premise.
  • The Djinn Falls in Love and Other Stories: a short story collection that I’ll be reading for the Resident Author bookclub

Jenia

Jenia

Welp, this month it’s my turn for the Walk of Shame. (Read of Shame?) I finished only seven books this month, three of which I only finished over the weekend and three of which are non-fantasy to boot. And after writing that sentence I feel rather silly for being ashamed (that’s still more than one book a week!) but such is the life among very enthusiastic co-bloggers. 😛

In any case, because most of my reading was done at the end of April, the reviews are all “upcoming”. I read:

  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (Audio): So witty! I can’t believe how much I could like a book where 90% of the characters are assholes or idiots. But I was just giggling along 🙂
  • Riddle of the Labyrinth by Margalit Fox (Audio): About the decoding of script used on Crete, Linear B. A bit more biography-oriented than I’d like but not bad.
  • The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers (Audio): Review coming soon!
  • The Heart of Stone by Ben Galley (Audio): Loved the main characters; found the finale a bit abrupt.
  • October: The Story of the Russian Revolution by China Mieville (Ebook): Full review here!
  • Circe by Madeline Miller (Physical copy): Review coming soon!
  • Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho (Ebook): My Reading Carousel book! Review coming soon!

Like I said, a lot of this I read only over the last two days; in fact, I did it as a personal challenge following the guidelines of the #24in48 readathon. That is, I challenged myself to read for 24 hours over the weekend — 12 on Saturday, 12 on Sunday. Because I included audiobooks it was… actually pretty easy. Took a long walk/hike to a neighbouring village, chilled on a bench in the hills. Saw a lot of cows. Felt quite One With Nature, then mildly horrified at feeling so. Still, living in the Black Forest makes for nice pics!

2018-04-28 16.23.04


 

Kop

Kopratic

I read books! I’m also pretty sure I completely neglected Short Story Saturdays. They’ll happen.  Maybe.  Just you wait. I feel like I didn’t get much in the way of reviewing in April, but I did read! They were:

  • “Rammed In The Butt By The Handsome Sentient Manifestation Of Traffic Who Is A Bad Boy” by Chuck Tingle (I wrote a review on r/Fantasy. This was my first Chuck Tingle book. Love is real.)
  • The Marvelous Adventures of Gwendolyn Gray by B.A. Williamson (eARC from the publisher via NG. This is an upcoming mid-May release. It was a fun MiddleGrade book that touches on topics of belonging, doing what’s right even when your peers aren’t, and facing problems with the aid of friends.)
  • An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon (Review on r/Fantasy. This was a book I had high hopes for. It exceeded them. This book packs such a punch that it’s difficult to describe.)
  • The Knights’ Protocol Trilogy by Phil Parker (self-pub trilogy, dark fantasy featuring the Fae. In my opinion, great characters with a fast-moving plot. Major con would be the few scattered typos in each book.)
    • The Bastard from Fairyland (eCopy received from author in exchange for an honest review)
    • Renegade of Two Realms (bought myself)
    • The Vengeance of Morgan le Fae (bought myself)
  • Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi (3 stars from me, but I still think this deserves all of the hype it’s been getting. I just found a lot of the middle section to lose the pace of the novel, with parts of it feeling irrelevant.)
  • Space Unicorn Blues (eARC from the publisher via NG. Review closer to release date. Quick review here: This is a book that sounds like it’s going to be rip-rolling fun; and it is, but it also touches on many serious issues in a creative, well-written way.)

For May, I’m going to try and get through all of the requests I’ve taken on, both asked of me and ones I asked for. It’s about 6 or 7 books, which I think is doable. I have a few June/July releases I’m looking forward to. I also hope to read my first L.E. Modesitt, Jr. book this month.

I just can’t believe it’s already May.

 


sam.jpg

Sam

In April I read 3 books. Despite the lack of volume, I’d say this was a pretty good month for me.

This month I read:

  • The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
  • The Last Unicorn by Peter S Beagle
  • Kingshold by DP Woolliscroft

Overall, not a bad month. I’m currently reading The Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho. After that… who knows? We’ll see where the month takes me!


Sara

Sharade

In April I learned that I had two settings: no reading and binge-reading. Thankfully, this month has been more of the latter.

I have read 8 fantasy books! 8! Who’s on fire? I’m on fire.

  • The Wolf of Oren-yaro by K.S. Villoso
  • The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
  • Ombria in Shadow by Patricia McKillip
  • Transformation by Carol Berg: Review to come soon, but tl;dr: I liked it a lot, mostly thanks to the characters.
  • A Charm of Magpies trilogy by K.J. Charles: I had so much fun with this fantasy M/M romance series. It features one of the sweetest and healthiest relationships I’ve ever read. Our two characters often have to contend with dark magic, dangerous curses and crazy warlocks — plus the laws and restrictions of 19th-century England, but still manage to build something beautiful and strong.
  • Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett: Received as an advance review copy (with the obligatory squeeing and freaking out). I have been excited about this book since it was first announced, and I can assure you, it was everything I hoped for and more. The book is due for a release in August 21st, and if you are a fan of ingenious magic systems and action-packed plots, it needs to be on your TBR. A more detailed review will be posted closer to the release date!

In May, I decided to follow the April method and just go with the flow of my mood reading, since it obviously worked. I have a few books I’m curious/excited about that I might end up reading this month (or not. Behold, for I have embraced the Chaotic Reading): The Death of the Necromancer by Martha Wells, The Guns Above by Robyn Bennis, Jaran by Kate Elliott, Song of the Beast by Carol Berg and (many, many) others that are still unread.


Tam

Tam

I had a pretty slow start to the month and it took me almost half the month to actually finish a book, but overall it was a pretty good month reading.

  • Guns of the Dawn by Adrian  Tchaikovsky – I really enjoyed this one. It was very slow, but the character development was well done.
  • The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang – This was crazy dark, but a really well written and thought out book. It releases soon and I highly recommend it to people who don’t mind their fantasy on the very dark side.
  • Threadbare Volume 1: Stuff and Nonsense by Andrew Seiple – A fantastic little comedic LitRPG which follows the perspective of a teddy bear golem. I can’t recommend this enough for a light-hearted and enjoyable read.
  • Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames – This was an amazing audiobook and it launched itself onto my favourites list. It doesn’t take itself too seriously and is a great romp by a band of ex-mercenaries as they go on a job again years after retirement.
  • Heir of Novron by Michael J. Sullivan – A fantastic ending to the Riyria Revelations series. Review to come
  • The Dragon Hunter and The Mage by V.R. Cardoso – A nice YA fantasy novel with an interesting world. It was a bit slow at first but came in with a strong ending. Review to come

That’s it for what I’ve read throughout this month. Currently reading Darkmage by M.L. Spencer and The Path of Flames by Phil Tucker and really enjoying them both. I don’t expect to have too much reading time between work, assignments and study this month, but I’ll have finished soon and will then have heaps of spare time to read.

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