March 2, 2015 by rachelcmann
The Reformed Vampire Support Group – Catherine Jinks – I picked this up on a whim and while I liked Evil Genius better, this book is cute. It’s so incredibly rare to find comedic books that each one is like a gem to me. In this young adult novel, being a vampire is actually pretty darn terrible. So terrible that our heroine belongs to a support group. It’s definitely a fun easy read.
David and Goliath – Malcolm Gladwell – I really love social science/how our brains work books and therefore I really enjoy Gladwell. I feel like this book tries to tie the threads together but fails in a lot of ways. By the end I had kind of forgotten what I was supposed to be learning, so I didn’t love the structure. The stories and the general ‘all is not as it appears’ message are appreciated.
Midwinterblood – Marcus Sedgwick – Another PeruseProject recommendation, I really didn’t know what to expect. It is a tragic romance. It is beautifully written and I feel a kinship with someone who can’t keep their tenses straight and can’t decide which point of view to write from – let’s try all of them! I don’t think this book is for everyone, it’s a bit cerebral but that’s not a bad thing in a young adult book.
Smoke Gets In Your Eyes – Caitlin Doughty – A non-fiction behind they scenes view of what happens to your body after you die, from one cremators point of view. Doughty is irreverent but caring in her depiction of the indignities of death. While I didn’t learn anything new, I imagine others might. If reading about death and dying is interesting to you, then this is probably a good quick read, but if it makes you squeamish you should skip it.
Brilliance – Marcus Sakey – This is really a page-turner. It’s got a lot of spy thriller elements, very fast paced and conspiracy theory inducing but also really frightening in how easily it could be reality. Essentially, in 1980 X-men started being born with special abilities. Regular people started freaking out because they were no longer at the top of the food chain and basically did everything possible to oppress this new elevated race of human. I’m definitely going to be picking up the next book in the series as soon as I catch up on my sleep.
The Beekeepers Apprentice – Laurie R King – Since I’m such a huge fan of the show Sherlock, I’ve read more Sherlock fanfiction novels (as well as working my way through the original Doyle) and this one…well I admit that I enjoyed it. I think it was a well told, if a bit overdrawn, mystery story. What I hated is the ‘Editor’s Note’ at the beginning that tried to make it seem like this was somehow a found true story instead of complete fiction. Everyone knows it’s fiction, don’t make up an extra story about your being mailed a mysterious trunk full of strange and wonderful items. It’s ridiculous. Without that absurd addition at the beginning I could have enjoyed this more thoroughly.
AlterWorld – D Rus – If you’re not a gamer (particularly MMORPG) don’t even bother with this book. It’s in the vein of REAMDE and Player One (both excellent books that I recommend to anyone) but is so heavy on the lingo and stats that it reads like a guy telling his friends about the epic leveling he did last night. That said, because I’m a gamer I got pretty sucked into the story and had to force myself to put it down because it was past my bedtime.
Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography – Neil Patrick Harris – This book would be impossible to read on a Kindle in my opinion. It really does prompt you to turn to multiple pages throughout the book. After completing one ‘adventure’ I went back to try and see the things I’d missed but I lost interest after awhile. I love the idea of this book and it’s very funny and well written, but I don’t know that I really learned a lot about NPH and that was disappointing.
The Shadow Reader – Sandy Williams – While this book was fun I didn’t get much out of it. It was a mashup of many other fae books, but (for me) very parallel to Merry Gentry by Laurel K Hamilton (though without the sex). So, meh.
The Shambling Guide to New York City – Mur Lafferty – This book was a lot of fun. Clever premise of a human being drawn into the cryptozoological world by them needing a travel guide written. The requisite number of monsters and otherworldly creatures to interact with but not getting overly complicated about it. I’ll be looking for the next book in the series!
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking – Susan Cain – This book is pretty self affirming. I nodded along to a lot of what she had to say about my people, and furrowed my brow in others. But I think the main takeaway, regardless of whether you consider yourself an introvert or an extrovert, is to be cognizant and respectful of other people’s preferences. Not everyone fights at top volume, not everyone wants to stay home as often as possible, not everyone reacts in the same way to stimulus. If the person you choose to love and care about doesn’t act the way you think they “should” then take a step back and try and see it from another angle.
Page After Page – Heather Sellers – Maybe I just wasn’t in the right mood, but another book waxing poetic on writing hit me in all the wrong ways. I think the problem is I keep trying to find inspiration and methods externally, procrastinating away from the act of writing, and I need to just *bleeping* do it.
White Cat – Holly Black – While I really enjoy contemporary fantasy that takes a look at what the world would be like if something different had happened in our history, this one just didn’t grab me.
The Bone Season – Samantha Shannon – I’ve heard lots of good things about this book but honestly it started a little slow for me and once I put it down I never picked it back up.