May book list

The Lost Conspiracy by Frances Hardinge: A book I finally fell in love with.

Voices of Dragons by Carrie Vaughn: Enjoyed but didn’t love

The Summer of the Great-Grandmother by Madeleine L’Engle: Interesting L’Engle family history

The Silver Bowl by Diane Stanley: Nice everyday details

The Hollow by Agatha Christie: This is actually one of my favorite Christies, I think because it focuses more on the characters than many of her mysteries do. Also, Poirot=<3.

Legacy by Lois McMaster Bujold: The second in the Sharing Knife series. Bujold is always great, and I really enjoy this world. I love the fact that it’s based on the Midwest (go, overlooked regions of the US!) and find the magical system fascinating.

Matched by Ally Condie: I was surprised by how much I liked this book. For more thoughts (not exactly a review) you can read this

The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss: Not a ton to say about this one. If you liked the first book, you should like this one. If you didn’t like the first book, you won’t like this. I enjoyed it immensely.

A Civil Campaign by Lois McMaster Bujold: A re-read, because I love this book like crazy. Miles’ dinner party always drives me to hysterical giggles, usually late at night when everyone else is asleep.

The Serial Garden by Joan Aiken: Short stories about the Armitage family, where anything can happen on Mondays. It’s all slightly mad and slightly heartbreaking, in the best Aiken tradition, but also lots of fun.

The Weather of the Heart by Madeleine L’Engle: Poems by L’Engle. I found myself far less impressed than I expected to be. I love her books, but somehow this poetry seemed less like proper poetry and more like reflections in the form of poetry.

The God Beneath the Sea by Leon Garfield: A re-telling of Greek myths, focusing on Hephaestus. I’m quite fond of Hephaestus myself, but I never quite tipped over into love here. This may partly be due to the pictures, which kind of freaked me out.

The Silver Blade by Sally Gardner: The sequel to Gardner’s The Red Necklace (brief review). This focused a little more on the historical aspect, which I had felt was a little weak in the first book. I never fully connected to the characters, though.

Here Lies Arthur by Philip Reeve: Liked, with a major reservation.

The Sittaford Mystery by Agatha Christie: A non-Poirot, non-Marple mystery. I remembered the solution, unfortunately, but enjoyed the way Christie handled the romance.

Powers by Ursula LeGuin: The last book in the Gifts, Voices, Powers trilogy (is there an official title?). I felt like the tone had changed a bit from the first two books. It felt more bitter and darker. I still enjoyed it quite a bit, though I wished there was a bit more at the end to balance out the rest. And there’s one line at the end that was absolutely heart-breaking. (Orrec, agh.)

Zoe’s Tale by John Scalzi: Proper YA sci-fi! We don’t get enough of that, so I was quite pleased. All in all, I loved Zoe’s voice and thought Scalzi did a great job of capturing her (despite never having been a teenage girl). I haven’t read any of the rest of the series, but I’ll definitely keep them in mind now.

Eona: The Last Dragoneye by Alison Goodman: Phew, a satisfying conclusion to the duology! I liked the fact that Eona didn’t do the right thing all the time–that in fact, she did some kind of awful things. And yet, she remained a sympathetic character. I was kind of sad about the fate of one character who I secretly kind of loved.

Across the Universe by Beth Revis: I’d heard really good things about this book. I did like it lots–certainly more than most dystopias–but I didn’t completely fall in love with it. I will say that I found the arc of the romance more interesting than in a lot of YA these days, and that the alternating narrative structure worked really well.

Secrets of the Sands by Leona Wisoker: An unexpected treasure.

Bloodline Rising by Katy Moran: Rosemary Sutcliff-ish and lovely.

The Morgue and Me by John Ford: It’s very clever. I am not in the mood for clever books, so I’m not being fair to it, but I was super not-impressed by the whole thing. Like I said, it’s clever.

A City of Bells by Elizabeth Goudge: This is not clever. It’s beautiful and quiet and old-fashioned. I love this book. Jocelyn, Grandfather, Henrietta and Felicity are on my list of favorite characters and people I wish weren’t fictional.

A Family on Wheels by Maria Von Trapp: Maria Von Trapp’s second family memoir. It lacks the emotional punch of the first book, but it’s nice to hear a bit more about the life of the family.

The Riddle-Master of Hed by Patricia McKillip: A book I love–the layers, the characters. This time I also read it mostly by candlelight, when our power was out for four hours, which gives it a lovely feel in my memory.

Heir of Sea and Fire by Patricia McKillip: In some ways I think this is my favorite book of the trilogy. Raederle is a fantastic character and I love the way the whole thing builds to the third book.

Harpist in the Wind by Patricia McKillip: As I said another time I read this, knowing the ending only makes it more poignant. Also, the last line is one of my favorites in the whole world.

Cotillion by Georgette Heyer:

Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey: The Daughter of Time is my favorite Tey, for ever and ever. But Brat Farrar is a close second and I love it.

Bruiser by Neal Shusterman: I was thinking about how to classify this book, and the closest I could come was magical realism, a bit like David Almond’s Clay. It’s subtle and freaky and fantastic. The three main characters could so easily have tipped into either unlikeability or sentimentality, but they did neither.

The Reckoning by Sharon Kay Penman: The last book in Penman’s Welsh trilogy. This book was so insanely tragic, I can’t even tell you. I read it with a (metaphorical) hand over my eyes, thinking, “SURELY NOT. SURELY this will not actually happen as I think it’s going to.” But it did. Nonetheless, it’s very good.


Filed under bookish posts, monthly book list, reviews

10 responses to “May book list

  1. lovely books! I feel the same w. Elizabeth Goudge…

    • Maureen E

      I feel so blessed–my grandmother loves her and introduced me to her books very early. And then when they moved to a small apartment, I got some of her copies.

  2. The Reckoning had a bit of retread (including a repeat of the most romantic line ever ™ ) but I still really loved it. It is tragic indeed.

    • Maureen E

      I must not be a romantic–I don’t remember that line! 🙂 I can see how you would think it’s a retread, but I did, well, not enjoy exactly. I appreciated it, let’s go with that.

      • Mimi

        In the second one, Llewelyn says, spoiler alert for those who have not read it (>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
        on his deathbed, “I was taught to never keep a lady waiting”)
        Sob, sob, sob.

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