Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Leaning Pile of Books

This week I have five new books I added to the TBR pile. They're all books I bought myself this time and they're all ones I really can't wait to read, although I probably won't get to more than one of them this month (I'm still trying to figure out my November reading list other than By the Mountain Bound by Elizabeth Bear, which I'm reading now).

Lips Touch: Three Times by Laini Taylor

I received review copies of the two books in her Dreamdark series and ended up really enjoying both of them (Blackbringer and Silksinger). So when I heard about this newest book by Laini Taylor, I was intrigued. Then I heard it was nominated for the National Book Award, and I also heard it was very dark, moving it up to must-order-right-now status. After flipping through it some, seeing the gorgeous pictures, and reading parts of it (especially the intro to the second story, "Spicy Little Curses Such as These"), I'm pretty sure this is a book I will be making sure to read in November.

Graceling by Kristin Cashore

Like the Laini Taylor book, this is one I bought because I received a review copy of another book by the author and ended up loving it. In this case, that was an ARC of Fire, which is one of my very favorite books I've read this year. Graceling was Cashore's debut novel and Fire is a prequel to it, so this was another must-have. I'd like to read this one this month as well, although I'm not sure if I'll have time to.

The Living Blood by Tananarive Due

This is the sequel to My Soul to Keep, which I recently read and really enjoyed. It was nearly impossible to put down and I really liked how dark it was, the characters, and the amazing ending. This one was another must-have for those reasons.

The Praxis by Walter Jon Williams

This is the first book in the Dread Empire's Fall trilogy. I'm always looking for new space opera (unfortunately, a genre I've not read that much of this year even though it's one of my favorites) and after hearing some pretty good things about this one, I decided to get it. This is another potential candidate for SciFi Month when I do one.

Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn

This one is not science fiction or fantasy but a mystery. It's the first of the Lady Julia Grey mysteries and ever since Angie of Angieville recommended it to me (her review), I've really wanted to read it. After she mentioned it, I looked it up on Amazon to see what it was about and was very curious about reading more after seeing the opening lines:
To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband's dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor.


orannia said...

Ohhh, lots of pretties. I've read and loved all of the Deanna Raybourne's Silent series to date - they are very good IMO. I'm normally not a first person fan (at all!) but Silent in the Grave was effortless. Lots of fascinating characters. I look forward to hearing what you think.

I tried to read Graceling last month. Yes, tried. I know, I must be mad. I just got...bored. I did recommend it to someone, who loved it so...

And I must get around to reading Blackbringer!

Kristen said...

Orannia - I'm glad to hear you think all of the books in Deanna Raybourne's series are good. They sound very good and that is one opening that really makes me want to find out what is going on.

As much as I loved Fire, I'm a little bit worried about reading Graceling - partially because I did remember that you couldn't finish it and partially because I keep hearing that Fire is a lot better. So I'm afraid that by starting with the better book, I'll end up disappointed. The premise sounds really interesting, though, so I hope I'll like it.

Memory said...

I've heard a lot of good things about LIPS TOUCH: THREE TIMES. I'll look forward to your review!

Thea said...

Nice book haul :) I second Orannia and Angie's recommendations of Deanna Raybourne - I really loved Silent in the Grave. Gothic, a bit romantic (but not overwhelmingly so), and just really well-written. It's my favorite of the books, though the next ones are pretty good too :)

Michelle said...

Oh do pick up the Silent series first. It is so splendid!! You will love it.

Anastasia said...

I was under the impression that you read Graceling before Fire. That you hadn't, and still liked the book as much as you had, says a lot to me. Larry of the OF Blog of the Fallen called it "excellent" in his latest list of works read (his highest rating).

Glad to see Walter Jon Willams on your list! It's time to mix in some scifi into your reading pile. Plus, I think he writes women characters better than any other male scifi writer I've encountered.

Benjamin said...

I have The Praxis by Williams, but haven't read it yet. Part of it is that I so many books, while another part is that I'm just reading more fantasy than science fiction these days.

I haven't started a new book yet this month. First up will be Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, which looks really good. Not sure what I'll read after that. Something from the pile before my copy of The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart arrives.

orannia said...

Kristen - I honestly think I was in the wrong frame of mind for Graceling. As I said, one of the women at work read it and loved it, and I'm sure The Book Smugglers did too.

Oh, and I agree with Thea, the first Deanna Raybourne book was the best. The others were very good thought, but that first book...and it's set in an interesting period - the 1880s!

Kristen said...

Memory - I'm going to read Lips Touch: Three Times after I finish the new Elizabeth Bear. It's my reward since I just finished a book I had to read for work. And the parts I read were so good that I'm not sure if I can wait any longer. I really love her writing.

Thea - Glad to hear you also really enjoyed Silent in the Grave. Gothic and a bit romantic but not too much so sounds perfect.

Michelle - Wow, I guess everyone really loves this series! I'm looking forward to reading it even more now.

Anastasia - No, I haven't read Graceling. Like I said in my review of Fire, though, it worked fine as a stand alone book without having read it (although the author did say reading Fire first meant there were some spoilers for Graceling). I did see that Larry also thought it was excellent on his list. Out of the books on his list, I'd read three and completely agreed with his overall opinion on all of them (Fire, Soulless and The Drowning City).

It might be a couple of months, but I agree, it's time to get some more scifi into that reading pile. Since I've read so little this year, I'm thinking about making January or February a scifi only reading month. I've had my eye on that trilogy by Walter Jon Williams for a while and after hearing what you had to say about it and how well you think he writes female characters, I ended up moving it up on the priority list.

Benjamin - Leviathan sounded very good! I'm looking forward to your review. The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart is on my list for this month as well - I'm planning to read it after I read the new Laini Taylor. What I've heard so far has made me curious; it sounds very dark.

Orannia - That happens sometimes, where you're just not in the mood to read a book you might enjoy at other times. And you're right, Thea did love it and told me she thought I would too.

I didn't know there were so many fans of the Deanna Raybourne book - maybe it's because I haven't read outside of SFF much lately. But I'm really looking forward to it now even aside from that great opening!

Anonymous said...

What a great stack. Enjoy! I have Graceling from the library right now. I've been wanting to read Silent in the Grave but just haven't gotten around to it.

Benjamin said...

I forgot to tell you that I finished Leviathan. It might be Young Adult, but it's very good. Great setting, great story, and great characters. Each chapter had a piece of artwork and those were great too. Definitely one of my favorite reads this year.