Books I’ve already talked about
This Monstrous Thing by Mackenzi Lee
Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson
Sylvester by Georgette Heyer
The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand
Among Others by Jo Walton
The Wizard Hunters by Martha Wells
The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison
Private Politics by Emma Barry: I like Emma Barry’s contemporary romances a lot–they’re smart and fun, and even though I don’t love Washington politics, they manage to engage me.
The Wanderers by Kate Ormond: Cybils book. There seems to be a circus theme this year! At any rate, I had kind of an ambiguous reaction to this one–I liked the concept and the writing was perfectly serviceable, but I didn’t find the whole particularly memorable.
Half a Creature From the Sea by David Almond: Cybils book. Almond is a wonderful writer–great at magical descriptions and dreamy, eerie stories. I do wonder who this short story collection is FOR; the stories themselves are mg/YA, but the framing distances the narrator from that age and for me set up an unnecessary barrier between reader and story.
Ash & Bramble by Sarah Prineas: Cybils book, that I was planning to read already. So, I really love Sarah Prineas’s books, and I was looking forward to this one a lot. I did find that I liked it a little less than I was expecting; I’m not sure if it was just me & the mood I was in, but I wanted just a little more depth. It’s an interesting dark fairytale mashup, and I suppose that part of the issue is just that I’m not a huge fan of fairy tale mashups (as opposed to retellings). All in all, I think I need to consider whether there’s an actual issue with the book, or whether it’s just not quite for me.
The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore: Cybils book. It’s another circus story! I actually was reminded quite a bit at the beginning of Gwenda Bond’s Girl on a Wire, but they stories go very different places. I liked the writing, which had a great sense of magical wonder, and the characters; I’m not quite as sold on the plot but overall this one worked pretty well for me.
Slasher Girls & Monster Boys ed by April Genevieve Tucholke: Cybils book. A collection of short horror stories, which draw on a reference of film or book. As is usually the case with short story collections, I REALLY liked some stories and REALLY disliked others. Nova Ren Suma’s “The Birds of Azalea Street” opens the collection and absolutely blew me away; I also found Leigh Bardugo’s “Verse Chorus Verse” genuinely unsettling.
Serpentine by Cindy Pon: Cybils book. I’ve enjoyed Pon’s books in the past, and I liked this one as well. I believe it is the first book in a new series and for me the ending was pretty abrupt, but it’s a nice start.