What I’ve been reading—the great and the grim

I don’t know what it is, but somehow books seem grimmer lately. I want everything to be sunshine, but then if it is, I’m not happy because it also seems too much.

Still, there are some great books out. And I thought I’d share some of the ones I’ve enjoyed lately as I’ve been reading a good variety of indie and traditionally published books.

I admit, I haven’t read all of Christopher Mitchell’s series, but I did finish the first book at pace. And as it’s currently at 99c I have no hesitation in getting the rest of the series. On the other hand, the very popular, traditionally published Gideon the Ninth was just too grim-dark for me. (Although it probably didn’t reach the official definition I can’t help but think it must be close, given this description.) All the cute skeleton touches…they were great, and the world pleasingly original with an interesting blend of science fiction, horror and fantasy. But somehow, I just couldn’t make myself care about Gideon. Maybe it was all the angst—in any case it was a great story with lots of twists and turns, and I don’t doubt it deserves all the accolades. Just all the bleakness wasn’t for me. And to be honest Magelands also had a couple of moments where I was unhappy about just how horrible the author was making their world. Epically awful, I was horrified. But I loved the academic character, learning, growing and doing his best in a rotten system, and I think for me, there was just enough hope…

Alright, The Shadows of Dust is a great premise, a story about Kerin thon Talisien, a space captain helming a motley crew on a sentient spaceship—a great turtle. For me, the very start was good, but for a while the ship seemed to be lurching from one unconnected crisis to the next—but it did find find it’s feet, and once it had, even the title started to make sense.

So, I’m pleased that my fascination with space turtles payed off, and so of the 5/6 stories I started this week I happily finished this one. So, a tip of the hat to Alec Hutson.

Younger Fantasy

Interestingly enough, the one on the left is another mainstream book that’s marketed for adults. It’s not for adults. It could have been one of my children’s books for adults but the school stuff is very YA. It’s made me a little grumpy, but I’m still reading it voraciously. There’s no doubt it’s a good book from an author worth keeping an eye on. Still, I’m at the point where I’ve heard enough about knot magic and how crazy the aunt is, and I want something a little less dingy.

On the right Mira’s Griffin is unabashedly YA as the character grows with their larger than life adventure. It was a very pleasant surprise after discovering the author on twitter and wanting to read about griffins. 🙂

So to sum up, I think it’s all about finding books you like, and sometimes you’ll find them where you least expect them.

Happy reading everyone, and if you have any fun recommendations, please let me know.

A.J.

Other posts you might like:

Fellow authors books (with everything from Lee Murray’s horor, to Eileen Mueller’s dragons and Charlotte Jardine’s historical fantasy. )

Great Books for Readers 8+

Leave a Reply