I definitely slowed down this month with my reading. January-March I read over 20 books each month, but I think this time I was distracted, so I got 13. I had more shifts a week at work, read some longer books, and took more time to enjoy what I did read.
Follow along on my 2016 Goodreads challenge!
Top 3 Books From April:
- Gold, Fame, Citrus – dystopia
- Princess Elizabeth’s Spy – murder mystery
- Poison Study – fantasy
“The Bitter Kingdom” Fire & Thorns #3 – Rae Carson
I was so upset when I realized this was the final book in the series- they just kept getting better. Queen Elisa is a fugitive in enemy territory, rescuing her love, and newly fueled by her visit to the source of the earth’s magic. If you didn’t love the first book, the second one is better. The third is the best.
“Murder at Castle Rock” Anne Marie Stoddard
Amelia is the manager at Castle Rock, a rock concert venue in Atlanta. Her boss, the owner, falls off the balcony and dies. Or course, it’s murder. Amelia’s co-workers and friends are implicated in the murder, so she has to investigate. It’s a pretty good novel, except the denouement at the end was longer than the climax “oh-turns-out-you’re-the-murderer-stop-trying-to-kill-me session”.
“Gold Fame Citrus” Claire Vaye Watkins
My friend Karissa recommended this book after we discussed how much I loved “Station Eleven” and “The Heart Goes Last.” It is another really depressing post-modern book about how much the world is going to suck soon. In this case, we used up most of the water (I hate that that is slowly happening), and there is a huge sand dune which covers most of south-western US which is slowly absorbing the landscape. Luz is a very frustrating character because you hate her decisions. Most of the reviews talk about her “weak” character, but her world is pretty screwed up, so I can’t blame her. Luz and Ray are living somewhere outside LA, end up kidnapping/adopting a toddler, and then escape to the desert where they encounter a drugged-out cult.
“Poison Study” Maria V. Snyder
I know I said that this month I read pretty slowly (for myself), but this book I flew through. I couldn’t believe how well-written and exciting it was. I loved it. Yelena has been in jail for a year after murdering her abuser. She is offered the role of taste tester for the Commander, and therefore learns lots about poisons. There is a rebellion brewing against the Commander of Ixia, and outlawed magicians are starting to show up.
“The Magician’s Nephew” C.S. Lewis
This book always creeped me out, because Uncle Andrew is so terrifying. However, The Chronicles of Narnia is my favourite series. I love the descriptions of when Aslan creates Narnia. It’s a beautiful allegory of the Christian creation story.
“Swamp Angel” Ethel Wilson
Another of the CanadaReads books. I did not read any descriptions before I started this book, so I was a little surprised with what I got. Maggie escapes a bad second marriage in Vancouver by working as a cook at a fishing camp in the middle of B.C. The swamp angel belongs to Maggie’s friend’s mother, who was a juggler, Nell. I didn’t love it, but I still can’t put a finger on why.
“Path of Destruction” Star Wars: Darth Bane #1 – Drew Karpyshyn
Darth Bane grows up on a mining world in the Outer Rim, and escapes from that world by becoming a Sith soldier. The Sith discover that Bane has powers in the Force, so he gets trained as an apprentice. Bane starts reading about Sith history, and realizes that the current Sith Brotherhood is corrupt and not the way to control the Force. Shit goes down.
“Princess Elizabeth’s Spy” Maggie Hope #2 – Susan Elia MacNeal
In WWII, Maggie is in training for MI-5, and ends up posing as Princess Elizabeth’s math tutor at Windsor Castle. She uncovers sleeper agents linked to the Nazis. Such a fun way to learn some history!
“The Crown of Embers” Fire and Thorns #2 – Rae Carson
Above I describe the third book in the trilogy. Queen Elisa has just conquered the invading Inviernos, a race of magicians, and defended her country. Many attempts are made on her life, and she discovers that as the God-stone bearer, she has a task to find the Gate of Life, where magic is most readily available.
“Of Grave Concern” An Ophelia Wylde Paranormal Mystery #1 – Max McCoy
Sort of an odd concept for a book. Ophelia is on the run after conning some rich Wild West guy, and ends up being mistaken for a murderer. She’s put in jail, and to make bond and prove herself, she performs a medium show. She can see ghosts.
“Murder on the Half Shelf” Booktown Mystery #6 – Lorna Barrett
At the grand opening of Booktown’s new B&B, Tricia encounters her long-lost (and drowned) love, who is using an alias, and his wife is murdered. Of course, Tricia has to balance her own mystery book store, her sister’s businesses, ridiculous personal situations, all while trying tot prove that her old love wasn’t the murderer.
“Do or Diner” A Comfort Food Mystery #1 – Christine Wenger
Trixie takes over her aunt’s campground and diner. The health inspector dies from poisoned food at the diner, so everyone thinks Trixie did it. She has to prove she didnt.
“A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms” The Tales of Dunk and Egg – George R. R. Martin
This book takes place 100 years before the Game of Thrones series. My KOBO version had illustrations in it, which was kinda cool, but if you get books like that, remember that it takes a while to load each page. If you clicked and it didn’t turn, and then clicked again, you’d have skipped a few pages. Anyway, the writing was a lot more juvenile than the normal series, but the stories were fun. Dunk is a hedge knight who gets adopted by Egg, a very small but knowledgeable squire. Turns out Egg is short for Aegon, and is one of the princes. Saw that coming with his purple eyes. Dunk is broke, and wants to get some money, and keeps getting into ridiculous fights