You know, I used to write a post about every single book I read. I seem to have derailed from that habit in the past few months. And while I hope to get that train back on the track next year (that’s the last of the train metaphors, I promise), I’ve given up on 2012. Well, not the year. Just on being all bloggishly dedicated and shit. I figure it’s the last week of the year, and since I failed pretty spectacularly at my 12 for 12 plans (remember those? Yeah, well, obviously, I didn’t), I might as well end on a fizzle, blog-wise.
That means what follows is a hodge-podge of thoughts about what happened bookishly while I was in Hawaii (as well as en route to Hawaii, and trying to get out of Hawaii (we had a four hour delay while they fixed our plane…I didn’t get as much reading done as you would think, since HB bought a crossword puzzle book and those things are like crack)).
As previously mentioned, I loaded up the iPad with ebooks, since we were flying cheapo Allegiant Air and they charge for every single item (minus one personal item that fits under the seat in front of you…and yes, they even charge you for water). So HB and I packed all of our stuff into one suitcase and I limited myself to one (ONE!) paperback book for the plane (because I can’t not have something to read during that time when you can’t use “portable electronic devices”).
Prior to vacation, Natalie tempted me into reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone. Which means that the trip over to Hawaii was spent reading that, along with A Clash of Kings (my ONE real-life paper book that was privileged to go on vacation with me). I made good progress in Daughter of Smoke and Bone, and read about 100 pages of Clash of Kings.
Of course, after I finished Daughter of Smoke and Bone I immediately had to download Days of Blood and Starlight. These books are amazing. So amazing, in fact, that I’m kind of at a loss for words. Laini Taylor creates a fabulous alternate world filled with angels and chimera. And if you think angels=everything good in the world, these books will make you think twice. Not that that means angels=everything bad in the world. Just that each side has its own world view and this series mixes everything up, in a number of ways. Karou is currently my favorite young female heroine, with her blue hair, and her mysterious past, and her confusion over life both in Prague and elsewhere. If you’re looking for a kick-ass fantasy series where human has an entirely different look, then Read This Series Now. Or read it for the whole concept of evanescence. Either way, it’s totally worth it.
As for A Clash of Kings, I’m muddling along. I read about 100 pages on the plane ride over, and another 100 or so pages on the way home, and I’m confused. So. Many. Characters.
After my binge on Taylor’s books, I moved on to Juliette Fay’s latest, The Shortest Way Home.
Sean is a nurse who has spent his entire adult life in the world’s war zones, helping others. He’s also convinced himself that he’ll die early from Huntington’s, just like his mother. But now that he’s in his 40s, he’s starting to think he might’ve dodged that bullet. So he comes home to Massachusetts to a family that’s not so happy that he’s spent his life helping others when there are people at home equally in need of help (an aunt that may be going senile, an orphaned nephew in need of attention, and a pissy sister who’s tired of carrying the load). While I didn’t always like Sean and his choices, I did like this book…probably bestest out of all of the books of Fay’s that I’ve read. Also, let’s hear it for guest appearances from the characters from Shelter Me!
Next up was I Hunt Killers, because when Princess Clown Nose shouts at me on twitter that I HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK, I listen. And now I will shout at you to GO READ THIS BOOK. It’s about the kid of a serial killer. You’ll want to invite him home for a good meal, but also hide the knives.
Then it was on to Doomsday Book. It’s got an interesting concept: in the future, history is studied by traveling in time back to the past. It took me awhile to get into the book, since it sometimes felt like the author thought you already know what was going on (maybe because she’s written other books set in this same future?), but once Kivrin travelled back to the past (and thanks to a miscalculation she lands in the middle of the Black Death) things got good. Who would’ve thunk that reading about the plague could be so fascinating.
After that, I was jonesing for some more YA (okay, I really wanted more of Karou’s adventures, but I’m SOL on that for awhile), so I ended up diving into the Mortal Instruments series. Which was fine for the first two or three books, but I’ve since finished book 4 and GOOD LORD, KIDS, LET’S MOVE ON FROM THE RELATIONSHIP DRAMA.
Ahem. It’s entertaining, but also overkill. There are Shadowhunters (they kill the baddies) and werewolves. And for good measure, there are also vampires, and demons, and faeries, and angels, and warlocks, and I’m sure a few other fantastical creatures that I’ve forgotten. Also, there is a truckload of teenage angst. And that’s just the first book. By book two, we’ve moved on to boatloads. And it gets worse from there. I know I’m being overly harsh because I read four of the books in one week, but I really think the series could’ve ended with book 3. Things are getting a little tedious at this point, and I have no idea how long this series is supposed to go. However, the good news is that no one sparkles. Although judging from the covers, you’d think they would.
I also listened to a few chapters from The Count of Monte Cristo. My goal is to finish it before next year. I’m on chapter 90, I think, so I should be able to do it. As long as I don’t continue to be distracted by the eminently distractible The Lighthouse Road (so good, people…you should read it…AFTER you read I Hunt Killers).
And as for Bleak House? Yeah, that didn’t happen. But I’ve got plans for that book. In January. More about that tomorrow.