Majkia's 12 in 12 - Continued

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Majkia's 12 in 12 - Continued

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Redigerat: jul 22, 2012, 7:29am

Above the line is what I've Read thru June 30th. New stuff added below a marker line.

1. Fairytales Retold
Hogfather - T Pratchett
Stardust - Neil Gaiman

2. Ancient Rites - Historical stuff
The Conqueror - Conn Iggulden - ER Book
Eagle of the Ninth - Rosemary Sutcliff
Sacrilege - S.J. Parris - ER Book
Wolf Hall - Hilary Mantel - Library Book

3. What If? (History with a bit of Fantasy)
Tongues of Serpents - Naomi Novik
Crucible of Gold - Naomi Novik

4. Beyond the Sea of Stars (Sci Fi)
Spin - Robert Charles Wilson
The Black Lung Captain - Chris Wooding
Captain Vorpatril's Alliance - Lois McMaster Bujold

5. Clankers - (steampunk)
Court of the Air - Stephen Hunt

6. Darwinists (messing with DNA and such)
Oryx and Crake - Margaret Atwood (audio)

7. Warm/Cozy/Bloody
Death at Wentwater Court - Carola Dunn (Audio)
The Winter Garden Mystery - Carola Dunn (Audio)
A Clubbable Woman - Reginald Hill (Audio)
Still Life - Louise Penny
The Invsibile Ones - Stef Penny - ER Book
Requiem for a Mezzo - Carola Dunn
The Breach - Patrick Lee
Death at the President's Lodging - Michael Innes
Maisie Dobbs - Jacqueline Winspear
Prophecy - S. J. Parris - Library Book

8. Who Dat? (new to me authors)
The Shape of Water -Andrea Camilleri (Audio)
Solitary House - Lynn Shepherd - ER Book
Heresy - SJ Parris - Library Book
Blackbirds - Chuck Wendig - NetGalley Book
Dissolution - C. J. Sansom - Library Book
The Crossing Places - Elly Griffiths
Full Dark House - Christopher Fowler

9. High Tea with the Queen
The Alienist - Caleb Carr
The Dante Club - Matthew Pearl
The Mysterious Lady Law - Robert Appleton
Silent in the Grave - Deanna Raybourn
Some Danger Involved - Will Thomas

10. Brave New Worlds - heavy-duty world building
Midnight Tides - Steven Erikson
The Last Argument of Kings - Joe Abercrombie
Scourge of the Betrayer - Jeff Salyards

11. Foreign Climes
River of Gods - Ian McDonald
Faceless Killers - Henning Markell
Iago: A Novel - David Snodin - ER Book
The Last Kashmiri Rose - Barbara Cleverly
The Master of Verona - David Blixt - NetGallery
The Dogs of Riga - Henning Mankell

12. Where are the Unicorns?
Before They Are Hanged - Joe Abercrombie
The Riddle-Master of Hed - Patricia McKillip
Tea with the Black Dragon - RA McAvoy
The Sword-Edged Blonde - Alex Bledsoe

jul 8, 2012, 4:00pm

Some Statistics:

40 books read

19 female authors, 21 male authors

14,452 pages read


I'm surprised by which categories are filling up fastest. I need to adjust further reading!

jul 8, 2012, 10:06pm

Hi Jean, checking out the new thread. Love the balance of male/female authors and kudos on the page count so far! I love the halfway mark as an indicator of what has been read and which categories are filling up the fastest. I have some work to do to balance out some of my categories too.

jul 9, 2012, 12:46am

Cool list so far! Are you shooting for a certain number in each category?

jul 9, 2012, 8:28am

#3 - yeah, the female to male ratio surprised me. Pleasantly!

#4 Well, at the beginning of the year, I'd only figured on reading 50 books the entire year, so was leaving how many per category open. Now I've adjusted my number of books upward and hope to read 75. I'm going to still leave number for category open, but hope to see a more even split by categories at the end of the year.

jul 9, 2012, 10:33am

Wolf Hall

I’ve decided not to write an actual review. A zillion have already been done. Instead a few comments regarding the book.

Firstly, it was certainly a different take on things, to look at Henry VIII from, of all people’s viewpoints, Thomas Cromwell’s. I knew little about him as an individual before I began the book, so not sure how close to what we really know Mantel stayed. But the character she created was certainly interesting, with depth and intelligence. He certainly changed throughout the book, growing to fit his increasing stature and importance.

Second, why the heck did she call it ‘Wolf Hall’? Yeah, I get that the Howards etc were really important, but still…

Thirdly, I found the writing style very off-putting at first. I had lots of trouble with dangling ‘he’s and was confused a lot as to who was speaking, who was acting. I had to go back and re-read to figure it out.  I also didn’t much care for use of present tense. I dislike it in most books, but combined with the ‘he’ problem, it made reading the book more difficult and pulled me out of the atmosphere all too much.

I expect I’ll read the follow on ‘Bring Up the Bodies’ at some point or other. Because the story is interesting from this different viewpoint.

jul 10, 2012, 3:02pm

The Dogs of Riga - Henning Mankell

When a raft holding two dead well-dressed men washes ashore in Skane, Kurt Wallander finds himself in the midst of an international mystery. Latvia? He knows nothing of Latvia, yet first finds himself partnered with a Latvian police major, and then has to travel to Riga to find the beginnings of the mystery.

I love these mysteries. Wallander is no hero, he’s not psychic, he’s not gorgeous, he’s not sure of himself. He’s just a guy doing the best he can dealing with a changing world he hardly understands.

jul 12, 2012, 8:55am

I hope Wolf Hall works better for me than it did for you (when it finally is returned and available at my library). I enjoyed The Dogs of Riga.

jul 12, 2012, 9:52am

#8 - I eventually got used to her writing but found it annoying and pretentious. Luckily the story was good. I suppose she was doing her best to make it a 'literary' rather than a genre book.

jul 13, 2012, 11:14pm

I read the first of the Wallender mysteries, and really need to get to Dogs of Riga.

Unfortunately, I find myself saying the same sort of thing about dozens of books. So many books, so little time!

jul 14, 2012, 7:56am

Terri, I soooo know what you mean...

jul 15, 2012, 6:46pm

Checked out The Sword-Edged Blonde from the library but my husband grabbed it while I was finishing off something else. He loved it. I finally laid my hands on it this morning and have just finished it. Awesome. Thanks so much for the recommendation!

jul 15, 2012, 7:44pm

hah! glad to have done you and your hubby a favor!

jul 16, 2012, 12:56pm

Crucible of Gold is the seventh in the Temeraire series - Napoleonic Wars with dragons.

The tale finds Laurence and Temeraire, who had been drummed out of the military because of rank insubordination (mostly on Temeraire’s part), still stuck in Purgatory (in this case Australia), and doing what they could to make the most of it. Laurence was mostly just glad neither of them had gotten shot as traitors.

Suddenly the British ambassador to the Chinese crown turns up with papers saying Laurence is reinstated (grudgingly) into the Aviator Corps. He also brings orders for Laurence and Temeraire to board the dragon ship still docked in Sydney and head to Brazil where Napoleon is attempting to destroy Rio.

Glad to be back in harness, glad to be doing something useful, both are eager to find themselves back in the war.

Naturally things go very very wrong.

I found Crucible of Gold to be as enjoyable as the first of the series, His Majesty’s Dragon, was. I did find Tongues of Serpents, book six, to be a bit of a slog, but this one is right back up there, with Temeraire being his usual mouthy and opinionated self, Iskierka driving him nuts, and the dragons’ captains doing whatever it takes to keep their dragons focused on the big picture: Napoleon.

(I received this book as part of the LibraryThing Early Reviewer program)

jul 16, 2012, 4:56pm

Glad to find another Temeraire fan! You're so lucky to have received it through the ER program. I love how Novik has taken Laurence and Temeraire all around the world. North America next?

jul 22, 2012, 7:25am

Maybe! They're close enough anyway. :)

jul 22, 2012, 7:27am

Full Dark House - Christopher Fowler

What a terrifically fun book. It’s 1940, London. The Blitz is on. One morning, making his way past the destruction from the bombers the night before, a young man makes his way to his new job at the Peculiar Crimes Unit.

Thus begins the joint detective work of May and Bryant. May, a few years younger, logical, practical, feet firmly planted on the ground, and Bryant, the dreamer, the thinker, the guy who calls in mediums and witches for consultant work.

The dialog is sparking with wit, lots of dry humor and lots of atmosphere, not only with regard to the Blitz but also the theatre.

Highly recommended. I'm definitely continuing on with this series.

jul 22, 2012, 7:22pm

You caught my eye with Full Dark House. I really wish that wouldn't happen when it is a book in a series - I see my TO Read list exploding when a new series hits it - but I have to say it does sound like fun and may be a good way to try out Fowler's works.

jul 22, 2012, 7:22pm

Glad you liked it. I did too and had to read some more of them. They are all good, - at least the ones I have gotten to.

There are more quite enjoyable elderly sleuths, I listed 10 on my blog with a short blurb -

As well, my last ER books was Harry Lipkin, Private Eye by Barry Fantoni and it was a hoot. Predictable ending, but a very good time getting there.

jul 22, 2012, 7:46pm

PS. I think you might enjoy The Technologists by Matthew Pearl more than you did The Dante Club.

jul 22, 2012, 7:58pm

I've got The Technologists in the TBR mountain somewhere. Good to hear you liked it.

jul 22, 2012, 8:01pm

Oh those mountains...

jul 23, 2012, 7:04am

>17 majkia: Flea, my wife, made little excited skips reading your review of Full dark house. I expect that complete series to end up on our shelves within weeks...

jul 23, 2012, 7:06am

LOL, Anders. Hope she enjoys them!

jul 23, 2012, 11:41am

full dark house also caught my eye from your review

jul 24, 2012, 2:52pm

Full Dark House is already on my list, so technically no book bullet, but I'm glad to hear you liked it! I didn't realize the book was set during WWII, but that piques my interest even more!

jul 27, 2012, 8:50pm

Full Dark House is already on my list, so technically no book bullet, but I'm glad to hear you liked it!

Me, too! That's definitely one I want to get to.

jul 29, 2012, 5:41am

Agent of Change - a terrifically entertaining space opera. Will definitely read the rest of the series. Light and fast, and fun.

jul 29, 2012, 5:44am

The Winter King by Bernard Cornwell

The power vacuum left when the Romans retreat from Britain, had been filled by kings and warlords who not only fight amongst themselves but also fight off invading Saxons and Irish warbands. One king, Uther, manages to cobble together a group of kingdoms. But he's dying, and leaves behind him only one legitimate son, Mordredd, born with a club foot. He gets a promise from one of his allies, that he will marry Mordredd's mother, Uther's queen, and act as regent until Mordredd, then only a baby, comes of age.

When Uther dies, the king betrays his promise and attacks, killing Uther's widow and attempting to kill Mordredd. But Merlin's band of Druids and outcasts manages to save and hide the future king.

Into that tableau comes Uther's bastard son Arthur, who had been banished to Amorica and who is now a warlord of great renown. Arthur promises to protect Mordredd and hold the kingdom for his half-brother.

Following the actual historical record (what there is of it), the tale is unlike all the other Arthurian books I've read. There's little brightness in the world of the Dark Ages. It is full of betrayals and endless wars and there are few men of honor to be found. Even Arthur is flawed and despite his desire to war for peace, he's foiled at almost every turn if not by his own flaws, then by betrayals and impossible odds.

An amazing book. ( )

jul 30, 2012, 6:29pm

Currently reading:

New Amsterdam - Elizabeth Bear
The Mysterious Lady Law - Robert Appleton

For August:

The Killing Moon - NK Jemisin an ER book -TIOLI #4
Mission to Paris - Alan Furst an ER book - TIOLI 17
The Iron Wyrm Affair - Lilith Saintcrow an ER book - TIOLI 3
The Map of Time - Felix Palma - on my Nook - TIOLI 3
The Eight - Katharine Neville one I've had for ages, TIOLI 13
Medicus - Ruth Downie on my Nook -TIOLI 16 and for Reading Thru Time : Ancient Rome

I'm probably being over-ambitious as we start Early Voting on the 4th, and have regular voting on the 14th. If things are slow I can do some reading there. If not, not.

aug 5, 2012, 4:38pm

I might add Full Dark House to my TBR wish list. I see the reviews on it run from favorable to not so great.

aug 13, 2012, 7:29am

The Eight by Katherine Neville

The Game. Played by kings and generals and grand masters. The game of strategy taking intellect and concentration and dedication to truly understand it.

Catherine hasn’t ever paid much attention to chess, although she knows several competitive players, mainly a young woman she finds annoying. So when Lily invites her to go to the latest chess match Cat is less than interested. But then she keeps seeing this man in a white hoodie riding a bicycle, and its disturbing, since she’s been painting the guy for weeks. She finally follows him. And thus, she enters the Game.

Who are the players? Who’s white, who’s black? What are they after? What’s the endgame they’re playing for? And why, suddenly, is Cat finding dead bodies strewn around New York?

The Game takes Catherine from New York to Algiers, following in the footsteps of a French Nun from 1792 as she searches for the pieces of a very special chess set, to find and protect a secret that’s threatened the world since Charlemagne.

Not just an exciting thriller, but with great characters beautifully drawn, exotic locales that spring to life, and puzzles galore.

aug 21, 2012, 12:43pm

The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin

N.K. Jemisin creates a world dark, complex and intricate. The magic is based on dreams and is different enough to make a reader pause and have to consider it deeply. The characters are written with depth and compassion, and are fully realized. They're put in a world we don't understand, and one they, also, don't fully grasp.

If you like your fantasy dark and deep, characters you can nearly see standing before you, and a plot that confounds, but delivers in the end, then The Killing Moon is for you.

aug 21, 2012, 4:37pm

This is obviously a book (and series) I am going to have to investigate!

aug 22, 2012, 10:38am

sounds intriguing...

aug 22, 2012, 2:17pm

@ 33 -- I am wondering how The Killing Moon compares to Jemisin's other work. I read The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and decided that the rest of the series wasn't for me, but you make The Killing Moon sound so interesting!

aug 22, 2012, 2:47pm

I liked The Killing Moon a lot more than I liked The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms. I adore her writing, but found the earlier story a bit problematic for me. I had no such trouble with The Killing Moon.

aug 22, 2012, 10:57pm

Hmm, maybe I will give The Killing Moon a try then.

aug 23, 2012, 5:40am

I already have The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms on the wishlist. Think I'll make it an either/or with The Killing Moon for a first taste of the author.

aug 26, 2012, 8:41am

Mission to Paris by Alan Furst

This is the first book I’ve read by this author, and it is part of an on-going series, but didn’t suffer from that at all.

Very good spy mystery with great atmosphere and intriguing twists and turns. Very likeable characters as well.

Set in Paris just before WWII when the Nazis were busy attempting psychological warfare on France. An Austrian émigré to the US, goes to Paris to film a movie and finds himself being forced into a position to seem to be backing the Nazis.

aug 29, 2012, 6:17pm

The Iron Wyrm Affair is a terrifically mad romp through Londinium, a place riven with magic, the force of which renews itself with the tide of Londinium’s great river Themis.  The young Queen Victrix, inhabited by Britannia’s living spirit, requests one of her Primes, particularly potent sorcerers, to investigate the sudden murders and attendant disappearances of her mentaths, who are brilliant thinkers.

The Prima, in this case a female, sets off with her Shield, the mysterious and oh so sexy Mykal, to ensure one mentath’s safely, arriving only moments before he too would have been killed. The three of them set out to discover who is killing the mentaths and just what he and his cronies are up to.

Terrific world-building, innovative and complex characters, and an intriguing plot.  Highly recommended.

I can’t wait for book two.

aug 29, 2012, 6:32pm

Alas, it is not available through my library. I will keep an eye out for it, though. I was just given a gift card to my local bookstore. Maybe they have it. *crosses fingers*

aug 29, 2012, 8:01pm

I've read several of Alan Furst's books now and although it is called a 'series' the characters don't continue from one book to another. They are pretty much stand alone books - just all about people caught up in the time and getting involved with spying and all that getting through the war stuff. They've all been good reads, some I like better than others, but that's just personal likes...nothing to do with the book itself.

aug 29, 2012, 11:30pm

I am in the hold queue at my library for The Iron Wyrm Affair , so YAY on a five star review!

aug 30, 2012, 7:22am

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. :)

sep 1, 2012, 2:55pm

August summary:

The Eight - Katherine Neville
The Mysterious Lady Law - Robert Appleton
The Killing Moon - N.K. Jemisin (an ER read)
Mission to Paris - Alan Furst (an ER read)
Medicus - Ruth Downie
The Iron Wyrm Affair - Lilith Saintcrow (an ER read)

I had a great August reading experience. I enjoyed everything, but particularly The Eight and The Iron Wrym Affair

My planned reading for September:

A Shadow of Summer - Daniel Abraham (TIOLI 17, and Reading thru Time Seasons
Box Nine - Jack O'Connell - (TIOLI 8, and 12 in 12 monthly challenge)
The Last Kingdom - Bernard Cornwell (TIOLI 6 and Quarterly Challenge Medieval Times}
The Beekeeper's Apprentice - Laurie R King (TIOLI 4)
Tooth and Claw - Jo Walton (TIOLI 14)

Each also works for September Series and Sequels.

sep 8, 2012, 10:04am

The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King

Enjoyable pastiche wherein a retired Sherlock Holmes meets up with a precious teen, who then becomes his apprentice. Russell and Holmes strike up a surprising relationship which grows over time.

The characters are well done, the world certainly believable. I found the mysteries a bit light and easily seen through, but everyone tells me the series gets better so I shall plod onwards and read more Russell and Holmes adventures.

I do like Russell and I do like Holmes, but found the book a bit plodding at times. Hoping for better soon.

sep 8, 2012, 10:36am

A Shadow of Summer - Daniel Abraham

Set in a vaguely Eastern sort of world, where thoughts can be made flesh by ‘poets’ who then enslave the resultant creature. The creature, an andat, is then held captive and forced to act in ways to increase the power of the city-state the poet serves.

One young man in training to be a poet, leaves the school because he finds the brutality of the training unacceptable. He eventually meets up with a young man he’d himself trained and who is now a poet, and finds himself drawn into a mystery involving murder and disappearances and treachery. And even discovers the andat is somehow involved.

Complex plotting, very well drawn characters, and an intriguingly different world. I enjoyed this greatly and plan to continue the trilogy.

sep 8, 2012, 4:48pm

A Shadow in Summer sounds really interesting! Sounds like one to add to the TBR.

sep 9, 2012, 6:52pm

Yup - A Shadow in Summer is going on my WL. It sounds vaguely influenced by The Lathe of Heaven.

sep 11, 2012, 2:05am

Oh dear, A Shadow In Summer is already on my wishlist, but I have no idea of when I will be able to fit it in!

sep 11, 2012, 7:19am

#51 I know that feeling all too well. Sigh. LT has made me to read list and my wishlist unmanageable!

sep 16, 2012, 12:15am

@52 Ditto

sep 17, 2012, 12:44pm

Box Nine by Jack O'Connell

A very noir mystery, with scifi aspects. A new designer drug is on the streets which is set to create havoc. The narcotics squad hopes to find the distributors and cut off the supply before too much damage is done.

The tale is told mostly in stream-of-consciousness through the eyes of several of the cops and several civilians involved.  Most fail to appreciate the horrors of this drug, as all are jaded and focused on their own problems and issues and believe they’ve seen it all.

Gritty, all too realistic in nature.

sep 17, 2012, 4:05pm

Nice to see Box Nine being read but shame you didn't enjoy it more.

sep 17, 2012, 8:26pm

Actually I did enjoy it, but it was quite odd. I think as I consider it, it is growing on me.

sep 17, 2012, 10:56pm

Box Nine does sound interesting. Stream of consciousness from multiple viewpoints is pretty hard to pull off in a mystery.

sep 18, 2012, 5:52am

I've really enjoyed the whole series although I still have to read The Resurrectionist (book 5) which I should get to sometime soon. Each book can be read as a stand-alone as the main thing that ties them together is the place rather than characters.

sep 21, 2012, 4:59pm

>47 majkia:,
I enjoyed the first one, despite it being plodding, but haven't got around to reading the next book in the series. I'm looking forward to seeing what you think if you read it.

sep 23, 2012, 10:54am

The second of the Cotton Malone series, The Alexandria Link by Steve Berry is a thriller with twists and turns. Cotton’s bookshop is attacked with rockets just before he learns his son has been kidnapped. He’s maneuvered into a race to find the hidden scrolls and papyrii saved from the Alexandria Library.

Fast paced and entertaining.

The first book of the Old Man’s War series, John Scalzi posits the idea of a world where 75 year olds enlist and fight the wars of humanity. Humans are colonizing the galaxy but there are other races doing it too. So, when humans on Earth become old they are offered the opportunity to join the Colonial Defence Forces and fight to protect the colonies. That must mean that the CDF has to rejuvenate them somehow right? So off they go to war.

A romp across the galaxy with lots of shoot ‘em up action and some interesting forays into alien thinking, and a re-evaluation of just what it means to be human.

sep 23, 2012, 3:07pm

Interesting premise in Old Man's War. My dad was a WWII vet - he didn't make it to 75, but if he had, I can't see anyone convincing him to go off to war again even if it meant getting his health and youth back. I'm sure some people would volunteer though.

sep 23, 2012, 3:30pm

I've only recently read (and enjoyed) Old Man's War so I'm glad you liked it too.

sep 23, 2012, 5:21pm

That's one more thums up for Old man's war. It does sound interesting!

sep 25, 2012, 12:33am

I was interested in what you thought of Box Nine as I read it earlier this year. I really liked how different it was with it's blend of noir and sci-fi and I hope to get more of this series eventually.

sep 25, 2012, 7:08am

Like Altered Carbon I had to think about the book a bit before I fully appreciated it's virtues. It is different and makes you think. I need to read more of both Morgan and O'Connell.

sep 30, 2012, 8:39pm

For September I've read:

54. A Shadow of Summer Daniel Abraham

55. The Beekeeper's Apprentice Laurie R. King

56. Tooth and Claw Jo Walton

57. Box Nine Jack O'Connell

58. The Alexandria Link Steve Berry

59. Old Man's War John Scalzi

I've read 59 books so far this year, far more than I expected to.

Planned reading for October:

The Bonehunters - Steven Erikson I'm halfway through this one.
Curse of the Mistwraith (Green Dragon Group read)
The Skystone Jack Whyte
Warchild - Karen Lowachee
The Rule of Four - Ian Caldwell
Newton's Wake Ken MacLeod

okt 11, 2012, 1:57pm

The Bonehunters - Steven Erikson

The sixth book in the Malazan Book of the Fallen series.

Epic, complex, heartbreaking. War rages not merely among the living, but now the gods are at war. Choose a side. Or can you even tell what side you’ve chosen?

Amazing how seemingly disparate storylines fold together at the end, setting up the next book in the series.

okt 11, 2012, 6:02pm

I keep hearing good things about Steven Erikson, but the sheer bulk of this series makes me a bit hesitant.

okt 11, 2012, 6:19pm

I can understand that. The Bonehunters alone is 1230 pages. Still very worth it IMO.

okt 14, 2012, 8:40am

Thanks for your review of The Eight.

okt 21, 2012, 7:36am

I listened to Rebecca. The least said the better. I despise wimpy heroines.

okt 21, 2012, 7:45am

Curse of the Mistwraith

Repeatedly the Rauven mages had stressed that assumptions were the weakness of the learned. With a vengeance.

Two half-brothers at war. Thus begins a tale that travels from one world through a portal to another world where mages hope the brothers working together can heal the plague of the mistwraith.

Misunderstandings, assumptions, wrong choices, overlooked opportunities, prophesies and hatreds abound. Sorcerers, it seems, are just as prone to error as everybody else.

The characters are well drawn and perverse and with minds of their own. The world is complex and the magic strange and confusing. The plot, though it seems fairly simple, confounds with consequences that aren't foreseen and complicate matters horribly.

I'll definitely be continuing with this series.

okt 22, 2012, 5:56am

-71 you just want to slap her don't you? However I was blown away by the book even though the protagonist was so wet which is usually a major gripe for me...

okt 30, 2012, 8:49am

Sadly, I've abandoned Beguilement the Sharing Knife Vol 1. Perhaps it is because it is an audiobook and the narrator has the main female being a whiny weak sounding female that is driving me mad, or maybe she never does grow a backbone, but whatever the reason, I have far better books to read or listen to.

And I'm a Lois Bujold fan too, so surprised.

okt 31, 2012, 11:35pm

Sometimes the narrator can really make or break an audio book. I've dropped a few that were too whiny sounding!

nov 22, 2012, 12:57pm

The Ships of Merior Janny Wurts

The second book in the Wars of Light and Shadow. The curse continues and drives Lysaer to found armies to hunt down his cursed half-brother. Arithon, understanding what has happened to both of them, opts to evade and avoid. But events continue to make that difficult. Interference from any number of others complicates and wrecks even the best laid plans.

Complex world-building, intriguing characters, and a plot with twists and turns aplenty made me unwilling to put this down. Highly recommended.

Fabulous book I couldn't put down. And Janny is one of the few authors who makes me use a dictionary!

nov 25, 2012, 1:16pm

The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner

What a fun quick read. I couldn't put it down, I though the main character so cool. Very spare writing, in that no extra words are added, yet there is enough description and color to let you picture the action. And speaking of action, lots of it!

nov 25, 2012, 11:43pm

The Thief is on Mt TBR! I could do with an action book.

nov 26, 2012, 3:02pm

@ 77 -- I love Turner's books! I'm excited to tell you that they get even better. :) Hope you enjoy the rest of the series!

nov 26, 2012, 4:42pm

Oh, The Thief is going on my wishlist. Sounds really good.

nov 26, 2012, 6:25pm

I may even have to put it on mine also.

dec 3, 2012, 1:05pm

Oh, I advise anyone to put The Thef in their TBR. So good!

dec 3, 2012, 1:10pm

#66 A Beautiful Blue Death - Charles Finch

– Period mystery with some great descriptions of Victorian London. Atmosphere is terrific, the amateur detective is interesting, and the mystery itself is complex enough to keep you wondering. I really enjoyed the atmosphere of this book.

#67 Terovolas – Edward M. Erdelac

– This was a free book I got through ‘s Early Reviewer Program. Have you ever wondered what happened to Van Helsing after Transylvania? He went to Texas, got mixed up with a mysterious woman on a train, some wacky Norse cowboys, a couple of Red Indians, a drunken trapper, and oh, yeah, werewolves….

#68 Death Warmed Over – Kevin J. Anderson

– Another Early Reviewer win. - Finally, a Zombie I can relate to. This one is a private eye who got wacked and came back. Well, it seems a lot of folks are coming back. As Zombies, ghosts, vamps, and a few other species. Ever since the “Big Uneasy’ when the necronomicon got exposed to moonlight, a virgin’s blood, all while there was a special arrangement of the planets. New Orleans will never be the same….

#69 Artemis Fowl – Eoin Colfer

- What happens when a 12 year old chooses ‘criminal mastermind’ as his career field? Well, he was following in Daddy’s footsteps. But then Daddy never attempted to kidnap a Leprechaun and start a race war. Atemis is a hoot. And the fairy was not amused.

dec 3, 2012, 1:33pm

I love the Artemis Fowl books. Books 2 is my least favorite of the series, but all the rest fill met with joy. :)

dec 4, 2012, 9:01am

#70 - A Test of Wills - Charles Todd

Ian Rutledge survived WWI with body intact, but his mind is very nearly broken to pieces, His lover left him because she was afraid of him, he has a voice in his head, and he's tempted to self destruction, In an attempt to piece his life back together again, he returns to his job at Scotland Yard, He doubts himself, is fragile and vulnerable, but needs to see he can again have a productive life,

The case is complex, with lots of possible suspects, but the main one is a hero of the war, winner of the Victoria Cross, and there's pressure from London and even the King to find anyone else guilty of the crime,

Rutledge, knowing his life never mind his job is on the line, tries desperately to reconnect with his instincts and identify the killer,

Great atmosphere and descriptions. Rutledge is likeable and sympathetic, and the mystery is awash with possible motives and perps. I'll definitely be continuing on with this series.

dec 4, 2012, 1:01pm

Glad you liked A Beautiful Blue Death! I've been keeping up with the series, and all the books have been very enjoyable so far. And A Test of Wills sounds interesting too...

dec 4, 2012, 1:55pm

oh that's great to hear about Finch's series. I'm looking forward to more from him. And yeah, Rutledge is a hugely complicated guy and the mystery was quite complex. I think I changed my mind about who the perp was about 6 times!

Someone suggested Rutledge is a more realistic Lord Peter Wimsey, as they both struggle with the effects of the War. I can see that! But Rutledge doesn't have the title and the money to shield him from his nightmares. Nor a Bunter.

dec 4, 2012, 2:29pm

I've really liked the Charles Finch books, though I think I'm a book (or 2?) behind, and I've also enjoyed Charles Todd's Bess Crawford series. A Test of Wills sounds very good -- I think I'll add that series to my list for next year.

dec 4, 2012, 4:31pm

A Test of Wills sounds good, and I could stick it in mysteries or histories. :)

dec 4, 2012, 9:48pm

Another Charles Finch fan chiming in! I am waiting for his next book, An East End Murder to come out. The series on a whole is very enjoyable reading on a rainy afternoon. ;-)

dec 7, 2012, 7:22am

Sorcery and Cecelia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot: Being the Correspondence of Two Young Ladies of Quality Regarding Various Magical Scandals in London and the Country - Wrede/Stevemer

This is one of the books that was on my wishlist the longest, since long before I joined LT.

What a great fun read! An epistolary novel that works terrifically. The world is alternate universe where magic is common, but not ubiquitous.

It is 1817 and one young lady is off to London to do the season. The other stays at home, and their correspondence begins. The one in London meets the odious Marquis, the one in the country learns of a magical plot connected with the Marquis, and both young women are drawn into retrieving the magical chocolate plot as well as trying to figure out just who is the bad magician and what is he/she up to.

Lots of wry comments regarding the mores of the era, Austen-esque.

dec 7, 2012, 8:26am

You made Sorcery and Cecelia sound good. Now on my maybe list.

dec 7, 2012, 2:29pm

Love Sorcery and Cecelia! There are a couple sequels, but to me they're not nearly as fun as this first one. You may also want to find Wrede's Mairelon the Magician and Magician's Ward, which are set in a similar world.

dec 7, 2012, 10:00pm

I love Sorcery and Cecelia but will warn you, the second book was written long long after Sorcery. Sorcery and Cecelia has a strange, sad publishing history - it's first editor left the publishing house and it was unloved from the get-go until it was reprinted over ten years later. The second book isn't as good. It needs an odious marquis!

dec 8, 2012, 7:20am

#72. The Rule of Four by Ian Caldwell

A college student, whose father was an obsessed researcher, meets a would-be disciple of his father’s. Their frendship grows and both young men are drawn into the same obsession, trying to figure out an ancient book written in code.

This book reminded me a lot of A.S. Byatt’s Possession. The same sense of nearly mad obsession, the same sense of needing to solve the puzzles and devote all of one’s time and energies to the mystery.

I personally loved it, but can see why others might not. I’m all for puzzles, bibliomysteries and obsessions!

dec 9, 2012, 8:23pm

"I'm all for puzzles, bibliomysteries and obsessions!"

Me too! Sounds like great fun. :)

dec 10, 2012, 6:19am

Congrats on finishing 12 in 12! What's your first book for the 13?

dec 10, 2012, 7:09am

I should pick a special one, shouldn't I? hmmm...

dec 10, 2012, 8:01am

Congrats on completing your challenge.

dec 10, 2012, 9:13pm

Congrats on finishing your challenge! How did I miss that......? ;-)

dec 11, 2012, 10:37pm


dec 12, 2012, 7:18am

well, I only decided to read 74 books, and I never expected to read that many, as previously my max per year (at least since joining LT in 2008 or so) was 41. :)

my first book will, I think, be The Queen of Attolia. Won't count Cocaine Blues which I 'm reading now since I've begun it before the 13th.

dec 12, 2012, 10:48am

Silent in the Sanctuary - Deanna Raybourn

Despite coming perilously close to being too romancy for me, I do enjoy the characters. Lady Julia is in Italy, recovering from the previous book’s events. One of her brother marries without daddy’s approval so daddy angrily calls them all home for Christmas. They obey and bring along Alessandro, their Italian friend, who is sweet on Lady Julia although she is busy denying it.

When they arrive, guess who is there as another house guest. Of course, the mysterious and sexy private inquiry agent, Brisbane. Julia and he heat the house up and hunt a murderer, a ghost and a thief, not to mention paying a visit to the gypsies.

The best part of these books for me, is the mad March family, who are all delightfully ‘odd’.


An extra for my 12 in 12 until tomorrow when I start my 13 in 13!

dec 12, 2012, 11:01pm

Congratulations on completing your 12 in 12 Challenge.

dec 13, 2012, 9:47am


dec 13, 2012, 12:10pm


dec 14, 2012, 6:31am

yep Congrats!

dec 14, 2012, 11:38am

Congrats on completeing your 2012! :)

dec 14, 2012, 12:25pm


dec 16, 2012, 4:42pm

Congrats to you on finishing this challenge!

dec 30, 2012, 7:25pm

Belated congratulations on finishing! I expect you're plugging away the 2013 category challenge by now! See you there in a few days!

dec 30, 2012, 7:34pm

yup, I'm there. See you there soon!