My favorite books of the last decade

50 Favorite books from 2010 – 2019

Tammy @ Books, Bones & Buffy did her best books of the decade post which I thought was great so I’ve created my own. It was lots of fun to look back at the last 10 years and remember books I’ve loved. I’ve kept a spreadsheet of the books I’ve read every year since 2004 so I went back through my spreadsheets and picked out these books. I didn’t give all of them an A, but these are the ones that have stuck with me.

I’ve listed anywhere from three to six favorite books a year. These books span a number of genres and some are books published that year and some are books published years and years ago. I don’t review all the books I read so if I have a review for the book on my blog I will show a link after the book covers. (I started my blog during 2013 so there are no reviews before that.)

2019

Doggirl by Robin Brande

2018

What the Dog Ate by Jackie Bouchard

Not a Sound by Heather Gudenkauf

2017

The Cold Dish by Craig Johnson

2016

Killing Trail by Margaret Mizushima

Cold in the Earth by Aline Templeton

In the Shadow of the Glacier by Vicki Delany

2015

Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear

The Lady Astronaut of Mars” by Mary Robinette Kowal

Lock In by John Scalzi

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

The Martian by Andy Weir

2014

The Cloud Roads by Martha Wells

The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

Nice Dragons Finish Last by Rachel Aaron

Iron Night by M.L. Brennan

Old Man’s War by John Scalzi

Earth Girl by Janet Edwards

2013

The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

Death Masks by Jim Butcher

The Touchstone Trilogy by Andrea K. Höst

2012

2011

2010

Have you read any of these books? How did you like them? Are any of them favorites of yours?

July 2018 Books on my List

books-on-my-listI keep a list of all the books I might want to read and add to it as the year goes on. As each month comes along I create a list on my blog for others and for me to keep track of as the months go by.

I don’t buy all these books–since I already have way too many books to read and some of the new books are expensive. I’m trying to stick to a budget.

I hope people reading my post may find some new books to read. I also hope these people will point me toward books I missed.

July 3

Scandal Above Stairs by Jennifer AshleyScandal Above Stairs

by Jennifer Ashley

Series: Kat Holloway #2

Published by Berkley Books

Genre: Historical Mystery

320 pages

Synopsis: Priceless artwork has gone missing from the home of a wealthy baronet, and his wife stands to take the blame. When Kat’s employer asks for help in clearing her friend’s name, Kat trades her kitchen for the homes of Mayfair’s wealthiest families.
Soon antiques are disappearing not only from the extravagant households of connoisseurs and collectors, but from the illustrious British Museum. As the thefts increase in frequency, Kat calls upon her friend Daniel McAdam, who has already set himself up in a pawnshop on the Strand as a seedy receiver of stolen goods. When a man is murdered in the shop, Kat must use all of her wits to see that the thieves are caught and justice is done.
 

The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette KowalThe Calculating Stars

by Mary Robinette Kowal

Series: Lady Astronaut #1

Published by Tor Books

Genre: Science Fiction

384 pages

Synopsis: A meteor decimates the U.S. government and paves the way for a climate cataclysm that will eventually render the earth inhospitable to humanity. This looming threat calls for a radically accelerated timeline in the earth’s efforts to colonize space, as well as an unprecedented opportunity for a much larger share of humanity to take part.

One of these new entrants in the space race is Elma York, whose experience as a WASP pilot and mathematician earns her a place in the International Aerospace Coalition’s attempts to put man on the moon. But with so many skilled and experienced women pilots and scientists involved with the program, it doesn’t take long before Elma begins to wonder why they can’t go into space, too—aside from some pesky barriers like thousands of years of history and a host of expectations about the proper place of the fairer sex. And yet, Elma’s drive to become the first Lady Astronaut is so strong that even the most dearly held conventions may not stand a chance. 

A Death in Eden by Keith McCaffertyA Death in Eden

by Keith McCafferty

Series: Sean Stranahan Mystery #7

Published by Viking

Genre: Mystery

320 pages

Synopsis: Scarecrows are appearing in the cliffs above the Smith River in Montana, and state investigator Harold Little Feather, is trying to discover the culprit leaving the hay figures in the cliffs, with signs painted that read “No Smith River Mine–Not on My Watch.” The event is related to a copper mine project that threatens the river, but his investigation takes an ominous turn when a little girl claims that a scarecrow chased her in the night. 

At the same time, Sean Stranahan and his friend “Rainbow” Sam Meslik have been contracted as guides to float a party down the river, which includes the manager of the mine project and the president of “Save Our Smith,” a grassroots organization devoted to stopping the project. Both men grew up on the Smith on neighboring ranches. When a dead body is found in the park, it’s revealed that the two have a shared history that runs much deeper and darker than their opposing viewpoints.

July 10

Spinning Silver by Naomi NovikSpinning Silver

by Naomi Novik

Series: Unknown

Published by Del Rey

Genre: Fantasy

448 pages

Synopsis: Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders… but her father isn’t a very good one. Free to lend and reluctant to collect, he has loaned out most of his wife’s dowry and left the family on the edge of poverty–until Miryem steps in. Hardening her heart against her fellow villagers’ pleas, she sets out to collect what is owed–and finds herself more than up to the task. When her grandfather loans her a pouch of silver pennies, she brings it back full of gold.

But having the reputation of being able to change silver to gold can be more trouble than it’s worth–especially when her fate becomes tangled with the cold creatures that haunt the wood, and whose king has learned of her reputation and wants to exploit it for reasons Miryem cannot understand. 

July 12

The Steam Pump Jump by Jodi TaylorThe Steam Pump Jump

by Jodi Taylor

Series: The Chronicles of St. Mary’s #9.6

Published by Accent Press

Genre: Science Fiction, Time Travel, Historical, Short Story

81 pages

Synopsis: Not one to let being banged up in Sick Bay stop her, Max has had a brilliant idea. But she needs Markham to execute it on her behalf. The subject of this cunning plan is Peterson, struggling with another bereavement and not doing very well. What’s needed to get him through it is sympathy, sensitivity, tact and understanding. 

Step forward Mr Markham, for whom sympathy, sensitivity, etc., are things that happen to other people. 

July 17

Veins of Gold by Charlie N. HolmbergVeins of Gold

by Charlie N. Holmberg

Series: Unknown

Published by Mirror Press

Genre: Historical Fantasy

312 pages

Synopsis: Desperate to save her siblings from poverty, a young woman discovers magic fueled by gold . . . and a love for the man who wields it. 

Abandoned by their father for the gold rush, Gentry and her siblings labor to survive alone in the inhospitable west. When bizarre natural disasters begin wreaking havoc on the land, Gentry discovers a world of magic. Desperate for help, she accepts aid from a mysterious stranger. 

The Wild Dead by Carrie VaughnThe Wild Dead

by Carrie Vaughn

Series: The Bannerless Saga #2

Published by John Joseph Adams/Mariner Books

Genre: Science Fiction

272 pages

Synopsis: A century after environmental and economic collapse, the people of the Coast Road have rebuilt their own sort of civilization, striving not to make the mistakes their ancestors did. They strictly ration and manage resources, including the ability to have children. Enid of Haven is an investigator, who with her new partner, Teeg, is called on to mediate a dispute over an old building in a far-flung settlement at the edge of Coast Road territory. The investigators’ decision seems straightforward — and then the body of a young woman turns up in the nearby marshland. Almost more shocking than that, she’s not from the Coast Road, but from one of the outsider camps belonging to the nomads and wild folk who live outside the Coast Road communities. Now one of them is dead, and Enid wants to find out who killed her, even as Teeg argues that the murder isn’t their problem. In a dystopian future of isolated communities, can our moral sense survive the worst hard times?

July 24

Record of a Spaceborn Few by Becky ChambersRecord of a Spaceborn Few

by Becky Chambers

Series: Wayfarers #3

Published by Harper Voyager

Genre: Science Fiction

400 pages

Synopsis: Centuries after the last humans left Earth, the Exodus Fleet is a living relic, a place many are from but few outsiders have seen. Humanity has finally been accepted into the galactic community, but while this has opened doors for many, those who have not yet left for alien cities fear that their carefully cultivated way of life is under threat.

Tessa chose to stay home when her brother Ashby left for the stars, but has to question that decision when her position in the Fleet is threatened.

Kip, a reluctant young apprentice, itches for change but doesn’t know where to find it.

Sawyer, a lost and lonely newcomer, is just looking for a place to belong.

When a disaster rocks this already fragile community, those Exodans who still call the Fleet their home can no longer avoid the inescapable question: What is the purpose of a ship that has reached its destination?

July 31

Arabella the Traitor of Mars by David D. LevineArabella the Traitor of Mars

by David D. Levine

Series: Adventures of Arabella Ashby #3

Published by Tor Books

Genre: Science Fiction, Steampunk

384 pages

Synopsis: Taking up almost immediately after the great Battle of Venus, Arabella has finally returned home to Mars to settle in to life with her husband, the mysterious Captain Singh. The Regent of the United Kingdom sets his eyes on solidifying his rule in the colonies and dispatches a fleet to better cement his control over Mars. Now Arabella and Singh must decide where their ultimate loyalties lie, with the Empire or with their home. 

Planetside by Michael MammayPlanetside

by Michael Mammay

Series: Unknown

Published by Harper Voyager

Genre: Science Fiction

384 pages

Synopsis: War heroes aren’t usually called out of semi-retirement and sent to the far reaches of the galaxy for a routine investigation. So when Colonel Carl Butler answers the call from an old and powerful friend, he knows it’s something big—and he’s not being told the whole story. A high councilor’s son has gone MIA out of Cappa Base, the space station orbiting a battle-ravaged planet. The young lieutenant had been wounded and evacuated—but there’s no record of him having ever arrived at hospital command.

What books are you excited about this month?

Can’t-Wait Wednesday: Arabella the Traitor of Mars by David D. Levine

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books which will publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

Arabella the Traitor of Mars by David D. Levine

Arabella the Traitor of Mars by David D. Levine

Series: Adventures of Arabella Ashby #3

Published by Tor Books

Publishing date: July 31, 2018

Genre: Science Fiction, Steampunk

384 pages

Synopsis: Taking up almost immediately after the great Battle of Venus, Arabella has finally returned home to Mars to settle in to life with her husband, the mysterious Captain Singh. The Regent of the United Kingdom sets his eyes on solidifying his rule in the colonies and dispatches a fleet to better cement his control over Mars. Now Arabella and Singh must decide where their ultimate loyalties lie, with the Empire or with their home. 

………………………………………………………..

I’ve read the first two books in this series and I especially liked the first book–Arabella of Mars. I didn’t think the second book was quite as good, but I still can’t wait to read this one. Arabella is a great character and the stories are very imaginative. And what a good cover!

What books are you looking forward to reading?

March 2018 books on my list

I keep a list of all the books I might want to read and add to it as the year goes on. As each month comes along I create a list on my blog for others and for me to keep track of asbooks-on-my-list the months go by.

I don’t buy all these books–since I already have way too many books to read and some of the new books are expensive. I’m trying to stick to a budget.

I hope people reading my post may find some new books to read. I also hope these people will point me toward books I missed.

March 1

Last Dragon Standing

by Rachel Aaron

Series: Heartstrikers #5

Published by Aaron/Bach LLC

Genre: Urban Fantasy

306 pages

Synopsis: Dear Reader, 

There is no way to write a blurb for this final book without spoiling all of the others. Suffice it to say, mysteries resolve, dragons war, pigeons abound, and Julius must risk himself in ways he never dreamed possible as Bob’s grand plan finally comes to fruition. 

But the Great Seer of the Heartstrikers isn’t the only one whose schemes are nearing completion. The Nameless End is coming, and even the machinations of the world’s most brilliant dragon seer might not be enough to stop it. As the world comes crashing down, it’s up Julius to prove what he’s always known: that seers can be wrong, and Nice Dragons don’t always finish last.

A Gruesome Discovery

by Cora Harrison

Series: Reverend Mother Mystery #4

Published by Severn House Publishers

Genre: Historical Mystery

256 pages

Synopsis: The Reverend Mother receives a decidedly gruesome gift in this compelling Irish historical mystery. 

Ireland. 1925.

Like all who seek charitable contributions, Reverend Mother Aquinas is used to being gifted some fairly dubious items. But nothing like this. On opening the evil-smelling trunk, labelled ‘old books’, the Reverend Mother is horrified to discover it contains the dead body of one of Cork’s richest merchants, wrapped in decomposing animal hides.

Many had reason to loathe the hides and skins merchant: his rebellious, republican son; his frustrated, clever daughter; his neighbours; his business rivals; and those whose unbaptised babies were buried on the site of his new tanning yard. But when suspicion falls on a former lay sister from her convent, the Reverend Mother decides she must help find the real killer.

The Magic Chair Murder

by Diane Janes

Series: A Black & Dod Mystery #1

Published by Severn House Publishers

Genre: Historical Mystery

224 pages

Synopsis: 1929.

The night before she’s due to make a speech to the Robert Barnaby Society on the subject of the famous writer’s ‘magic chair’, committee member Linda Dexter disappears. When her body is discovered two days later, fellow members Frances Black and Tom Dod determine to find out the truth about her death.

Could Linda have discovered something about Robert Barnaby that got her killed? Or does the answer lie in the dead woman’s past? As they pursue their investigations, Fran and Tom find the Barnaby Society to be a hotbed of clashing egos, seething resentments and ill-advised love affairs – but does a killer lurk among them? 

March 6

Lake Silence

by Anne Bishop

Series: The Others #6

Published by Ace

Genre: Urban Fantasy

416 pages

Synopsis: Human laws do not apply in the territory controlled by the Others–vampires, shapeshifters, and paranormal beings even more deadly. And this is a fact that humans should never, ever forget . . .

After her divorce, Vicki DeVine took over a rustic resort near Lake Silence, in a human town that is not human controlled. Towns like Vicki’s have no distance from the Others, the dominant predators that rule most of the land and all of the water throughout the world. And when a place has no boundaries, you never really know what’s out there watching you.

Vicki was hoping to find a new career and a new life. But when her lodger, Aggie Crowe–one of the shapeshifting Others–discovers a dead body, Vicki finds trouble instead. The detectives want to pin the man’s death on her, despite the evidence that nothing human could have killed the victim. As Vicki and her friends search for answers, things get dangerous–and it’ll take everything they have to stay alive. 

Burn Bright

by Patricia Briggs

Series: Alpha and Omega #5

Published by Orbit

Genre: Urban Fantasy

384 pages

Synopsis: They are the wild and the broken. The werewolves too damaged to live safely among their own kind. For their own good, they have been exiled to the outskirts of Aspen Creek, Montana. Close enough to the Marrok’s pack to have its support; far enough away to not cause any harm.

With their Alpha out of the country, Charles and Anna are on call when an SOS comes in from the fae mate of one such wildling. Heading into the mountainous wilderness, they interrupt the abduction of the wolf–but can’t stop blood from being shed. Now Charles and Anna must use their skills–his as enforcer, hers as peacemaker–to track down the attackers, reopening a painful chapter in the past that springs from the darkest magic of the witchborn…

Lady Henterman’s Wardrobe

by Marshall Ryan Maresca

Series: The Streets of Maradaine #2

Published by DAW

Genre: Fantasy

352 pages

Synopsis: Mixing high fantasy and urban fantasy, the second novel of the Streets of Maradaine series follows the Rynax brothers’ crew of outlaws as they attempt their biggest heist yet and restore justice to the common people.

The neighborhood of North Seleth has suffered–and not just the Holver Alley Fire. Poverty and marginalization are forcing people out of the neighborhood, and violence on the streets is getting worse. Only the Rynax brothers–Asti and Verci–and their Holver Alley Crew are fighting for the common people. They’ve taken care of the people who actually burned down Holver Alley, but they’re still looking for the moneyed interests behind the fire.

The trail of breadcrumbs leads the crew to Lord Henterman, and they plan to infiltrate the noble’s house on the other side of the city. While the crew tries to penetrate the heart of the house, the worst elements of North Seleth seem to be uniting under a mysterious new leader. With the crew’s attention divided, Asti discovers that the secrets behind the fire, including ones from his past, might be found in Lady Henterman’s wardrobe. 

Reclaiming Shilo Snow

by Mary Weber

Series: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow #2

Published by Thomas Nelson

Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction

352 pages

Synopsis: Trapped on the ice-planet of Delon, gamer girl Sofi and Ambassador Miguel have discovered that nothing is what it seems, including their friends. On a quest to rescue her brother, Shilo, a boy everyone believes is dead, they must now escape and warn Earth of Delon’s designs on humanity. Except the more they unearth of the planet and Sofi’s past, the more they feel themselves unraveling, as each new revelation has Sofi questioning the very existence of reality.

Meanwhile, back on Earth, Sofi’s mom, Inola, is battling a different kind of unraveling: a political one that could cost lives, positions, and a barely-rebuilt society, should they discover the deal made with the Delonese.

But there’s a secret deeper than all that. One locked away inside Sofi and ticking away with the beginnings, endings, and answers to everything. Including how to save humanity.

March 13

Disappointment River: Finding and Losing the Northwest Passage

by Brian Castner

Series: None

Published by McClelland & Stewart

Genre: History

352 pages

Synopsis: In 1789, Alexander Mackenzie travelled the 1,125 miles of the immense river in Canada that now bears his name, in search of the fabled Northwest Passage, only to confront impassable pack ice. In 2016, the acclaimed memoirist Brian Castner retraced Mackenzie’s route by canoe in a grueling journey — and discovered the Passage he could not find.

Disappointment River is a dual historical narrative and travel memoir that at once transports readers back to the heroic age of North American exploration and places them in a still rugged but increasingly fragile Arctic wilderness in the process of profound alteration by the dual forces of energy extraction and climate change. Eleven years before Lewis and Clark, the Scottish explorer Alexander Mackenzie actually crossed the North American continent with a team of voyageurs and Native guides. Before that he was the first to discover a route to the Arctic Ocean from the Great Lakes, along the river he named “Disappointment” because he believed he’d failed in his mission to find a trade route to the riches of the East. In fact he had — he was just two-plus centuries early.

In this book, Brian Castner not only retells the story of Mackenzie’s epic voyages in vivid prose, he personally retraces his travels in an 1,125-mile canoe voyage down the river that bears his name, battling exhaustion, exposure, mosquitoes, white water rapids and the threat of bears. He transports readers to a world rarely glimpsed in the media, of tar sands, thawing permafrost, remote Native villages and, at the end, a wide open Arctic Ocean that is quickly becoming a far-northern Mississippi of barges and pipelines and oil money. 

Holy Ceremony

by Harri Nykanen

Translated by Kristian London

Series: Ariel Kafka #3

Published by Bitter Lemon Press

Genre: Mystery, Police Procedural

248 pages

Synopsis: There are two Jewish cops in all of Helsinki. One of them, Ariel Kafka, a lieutenant in the Violent Crime Unit, identifies himself as a policeman first, then a Finn, and lastly a Jew. Kafka is a stubborn, dedicated policeman with wry sense of humor, always willing to risk his career to get an answer. A woman’s body scrawled with religious texts is found in a Helsinki apartment. It turns out she wasn’t murdered: the body was stolen from the morgue. The body is stolen again, and this time is immolated in a funeral pyre in Helsinki’s Central Park. Kafka finds himself investigating a series of crimes leading to the enigmatic Christian Brotherhood of the Holy Vault. But before he can solve the puzzle, more than one Brother must pay for past sins with his life.

March 20

Stone Mad

by Elizabeth Bear

Series: Karen Memory #2

Published by Tor.com

Genre: Science Fiction, Steampunk, Novella

192 pages

Synopsis: Now Karen is back with Stone Mad, a new story about spiritualists, magicians, con-men, and an angry lost tommy-knocker—a magical creature who generally lives in the deep gold mines of Alaska, but has been kidnapped and brought to Rapid City.

Karen and Priya are out for a night on the town, celebrating the purchase of their own little ranch and Karen’s retirement from the Hotel Ma Cherie, when they meet the Arcadia Sisters, spiritualists who unexpectedly stir up the tommy-knocker in the basement. The ensuing show could bring down the house, if Karen didn’t rush in to rescue everyone she can. 

March 27

Murder at Half Moon Gate

by Andrea Penrose

Series: A Wrexford & Sloan Mystery #2

Published by Kensington

Genre: Historical Mystery

304 pages

Synopsis: When Lord Wrexford discovers the body of a gifted inventor in a dark London alley, he promptly alerts the watchman and lets the authorities handle the matter. But Wrexford soon finds himself drawn into the murder investigation when the inventor’s widow begs for his assistance, claiming the crime was not a random robbery. It seems her husband’s designs for a revolutionary steam-powered engine went missing the night of his death. The plans could be worth a fortune . . . and very dangerous in the wrong hands.

Joining Wrexford in his investigation is Charlotte Sloane, who uses the pseudonym A. J. Quill to publish her scathing political cartoons. Her extensive network of informants is critical for her work, but she doesn’t mind tapping that same web of spies to track down an elusive killer. Each suspect—from ambitious assistants to rich investors, and even the inventor’s widow—is entwined in a maze of secrets and lies that leads Wrexford and Sloane down London’s most perilous stews and darkest alleyways.

With danger lurking at every turn, the potent combination of Wrexford’s analytical mind and Sloane’s exacting intuition begins to unravel the twisted motivations behind the inventor’s death. But they are up against a cunning and deadly foe—a killer ready to strike again before they can recover the inventor’s priceless designs . . . 

The Bengal Identity

by Eileen Watkins

Series: A Cat Groomer Mystery #2

Published by Kensington Publishing

Genre: Cozy Mystery, Cats

272 pages

Synopsis: Everyone knows a leopard can’t change its spots. But can a thief hide the spots on a catnapped Bengal? Groomer Cassie McGlone is about to find out . . .

With no ID for his pet, an agitated young man shows up at Cassie’s Comfy Cats claiming his house has burned down and he needs to board his big, brown cat, Ayesha. But after a bath washes dye out of the cat’s coat and reveals beautiful spots, Cassie suspects the exotic-looking feline may in fact be a valuable Bengal show cat, possibly stolen. At the same time, there are rumored sightings of a “wild cat” in the hills of Chadwick, New Jersey. Could there be a connection?

When Ayesha’s alleged owner turns up dead, it looks like whoever wants the beautiful Bengal is not pussyfooting around. Working with the police, Cassie and her staff need to be careful not to reveal the purloined purebred’s whereabouts while they discreetly make inquiries to cat breeders to find her real owners. But after a break-in attempt rattles Cassie’s cage, it’s clear someone let the cat out of the bag. And when a second body is found, it’s up to Cassie to spot the killer, who may be grooming her to be the next victim . . .

What books are you excited about this month?

October 2017 books on my list

I keep a list of all the books I might want to read and add to it as the year goes on. As each month comes along I create a list on my blog for others and for me to keep track of asbooks-on-my-list the months go by.

I don’t buy all these books–since I already have way too many books to read and some of the new books are expensive. I’m trying to stick to a budget.

I hope people reading my post may find some new books to read. I also hope these people will point me toward books I missed.

October 3

Ironfoot

by Dave Duncan

Series: The Enchanter General #1

Published by Night Shade Books

Genre: Fantasy

344 pages

Synopsis: Medieval magic, murder, and mayhem! 

It is 1164, and for a hundred years England has been ruled by the Normans. A young Saxon boy named Durwin, crippled by a childhood accident, had caught the eye of a Norman sage teaching at a rural school of magic. Realizing that the boy had promise, Durwin was made stable boy, and eventually allowed to attend classes. 

Now twenty, Durwin is proficient enough that he is assigned to teach, but the other sages refuse to promote him and he is hassled by the Norman juniors for his disability. But those troubles turn out to be the least of his worries when he manages to corrects errors in an ancient corrupted spell, which promptly prophesies murder. 

Sure enough, word soon reaches the school that one of the local count’s house sage has died, perhaps slain by black magic. Durwin is whisked away to the family’s castle, only to find that one death was only the beginning. The young sage quickly learns of a dizzying plot to assassinate King Henry. Dropped into the middle of the complex politics of England’s royal courts, can Durwin stop them in time?

Select

by Marit Weisenberg

Series: Select #1

Published by Charlesbridge Teen

Genre: YA

352 pages

Synopsis: Coming from a race of highly-evolved humans, Julia Jaynes has the perfect life. The perfect family. The perfect destiny. But there’s something rotten beneath the surface—dangerous secrets her father is keeping; abilities she was never meant to have; and an elite society of people determined to keep their talents hidden and who care nothing for the rest of humanity. So when Julia accidentally disrupts the Jaynes’ delicate anonymity, she’s banished to the one place meant to make her feel inferior: public high school.

Julia’s goal is to lay low and blend in. Then she meets him—John Ford, tennis prodigy, all-around good guy. When Julia discovers a knack for reading his mind, and also manipulating his life, school suddenly becomes a temporary escape from the cold grip of her manipulative father. But as Julia’s powers over John grow, so do her feelings. For the first time in her life, Julia begins to develop a sense of self, to question her restrictive upbringing and her family prejudices. She must decide: can a perfect love be worth more than a perfect life?

October 10

The Stone in the Skull

by Elizabeth Bear

Series: Lotus Kingdoms #1

Published by Tor Books

Genre: Fantasy

368 pages

Synopsis: The Stone in the Skull, the first volume in her new trilogy, takes readers over the dangerous mountain passes of the Steles of the Sky and south into the Lotus Kingdoms.

The Gage is a brass automaton created by a wizard of Messaline around the core of a human being. His wizard is long dead, and he works as a mercenary. He is carrying a message from a the most powerful sorcerer of Messaline to the Rajni of the Lotus Kingdom. With him is The Dead Man, a bitter survivor of the body guard of the deposed Uthman Caliphate, protecting the message and the Gage. They are friends, of a peculiar sort.

They are walking into a dynastic war between the rulers of the shattered bits of a once great Empire. 

The Rules of Magic

by Alice Hoffman

Series: Practical Magic 0

Published by Simon & Schuster

Genre: Historical Fantasy, Magical Realism

384 pages

Synopsis: Find your magic

For the Owens family, love is a curse that began in 1620, when Maria Owens was charged with witchery for loving the wrong man.

Hundreds of years later, in New York City at the cusp of the sixties, when the whole world is about to change, Susanna Owens knows that her three children are dangerously unique. Difficult Franny, with skin as pale as milk and blood red hair, shy and beautiful Jet, who can read other people’s thoughts, and charismatic Vincent, who began looking for trouble on the day he could walk.

From the start Susanna sets down rules for her children: No walking in the moonlight, no red shoes, no wearing black, no cats, no crows, no candles, no books about magic. And most importantly, never, ever, fall in love. But when her children visit their Aunt Isabelle, in the small Massachusetts town where the Owens family has been blamed for everything that has ever gone wrong, they uncover family secrets and begin to understand the truth of who they are. Back in New York City each begins a risky journey as they try to escape the family curse.

The Owens children cannot escape love even if they try, just as they cannot escape the pains of the human heart. The two beautiful sisters will grow up to be the revered, and sometimes feared, aunts in Practical Magic, while Vincent, their beloved brother, will leave an unexpected legacy. 

Running Out of Space

by S.J. Higbee

Series: Unknown

Published by Griffinwing Publishing

Genre: Science Fiction

294 pages

Synopsis: Jezel Campo has yearned to serve on the space merchant ship Estrella Fugaz for as long as she can remember – until one rash act changes everything…

I can’t recall whose idea it was. Just that me and mis amigas were sick of wading through yet another unjust punishment detail. So we decide to take ourselves off on a short jaunt to the lower reaches of Space Station Hawking to prove that fertile Iberian girls can also deal with danger.

The consequences of that single expedition change the lives of all four of us, as well as that of the stranger who steps in to save us down in lawless Basement Level. Now I have more excitement and danger than I can handle, while confronting lethal shipboard politics, kidnapping, betrayal. And murder.

October 17

Dark Signal

by Shannon Baker

Series: Kate Fox #2

Published by Forge

Genre: Mystery, Police Procedural

304 pages

Synopsis: Reeling from her recent divorce, Kate Fox has just been sworn in as Grand County, Nebraska Sheriff when tragedy strikes. A railroad accident has left engineer Chad Mills dead, his conductor Bobby Jenkins in shock. Kate soon realizes that the accident was likely murder.

Who would want to kill Chad Mills? Kate finds that he made a few enemies as president of the railroad workers union. Meanwhile his widow is behaving oddly. And why was his neighbor Josh Stevens at the Mills house on the night of the accident?

While her loud and meddling family conspires to help Kate past her divorce, State Patrol Officer Trey closes in on Josh Stevens as the suspect. Kate doesn’t believe it. She may not have the experience, but she’s lived in the Sandhills her whole life, and knows the land and the people. Something doesn’t add up―and Kate must find the real killer before he can strike again. 

Breach of Containment

by Elizabeth Bonesteel

Series: Central Corps #3

Published by Harper Voyager

Genre: Science Fiction

576 pages

Synopsis: A reluctant hero must prevent war in space and on Earth in this fast-paced military science fiction thriller from the author of The Cold Between and Remnants of Trust—a page-turning hybrid combining the gritty, high-octane thrills of James S. A. Corey and the sociopolitical drama of Ann Leckie.

Space is full of the unknown . . . most of it ready to kill you.

When hostilities between factions threaten to explode into a shooting war on the moon of Yakutsk, the two major galactic military powers, Central Corps and PSI, send ships to defuse the situation. But when a strange artifact is discovered, events are set in motion that threaten the entire colonized galaxy—including former Central Corps Commander Elena Shaw.

Now an engineer on a commercial shipping vessel, Elena finds herself drawn into the conflict when she picks up the artifact on Yakutsk—and investigation of it uncovers ties to the massive, corrupt corporation Ellis Systems, whom she’s opposed before. Her safety is further compromised by her former ties to Central Corps—Elena can’t separate herself from her past life and her old ship, the CCSS Galileo.

Before Elena can pursue the artifact’s purpose further, disaster strikes: all communication with the First Sector—including Earth—is lost. The reason becomes apparent when news reaches Elena of a battle fleet, intent on destruction, rapidly approaching Earth. And with communications at sublight levels, there is no way to warn the planet in time.

Armed with crucial intel from a shadowy source and the strange artifact, Elena may be the only one who can stop the fleet, and Ellis, and save Earth. But for this mission there will be no second chances—and no return. 

 

A Plague of Giants

by Kevin Hearne

Series: Seven Kennings #1

Published by Del Rey Books

Genre: Fantasy

624 pages

Synopsis: In the start of an enchanting new series, the New York Times bestselling author of The Iron Druid Chronicles creates an unforgettable fantasy world . . . one that is forever changed when an army of giants invades. The kingdom’s only hope? The discovery of a form of magic that will call the world’s wondrous beasts to fight by the side of humankind.

 

Cold as Ice

by Julie Mulhern

Series: The Country Club Murders #6

Published by Henery Press

Genre: Historical Mystery

268 pages

Synopsis: Ellison Russell’s life resembles a rollercoaster ride. And rollercoasters make her ill. Her daughter Grace has a crush on a boy Ellison doesn’t trust and she’s taken to hosting wild parties when Ellison goes out for the evening. Worse, the bank which represents Grace’s inheritance from her father may be in trouble.

When a meeting with the chef at the country club leads to the discovery of a body, Ellison can’t afford cold feet. She must save the bank, find the killer, and convince Grace (and herself) that powerful women don’t need men to rescue them.

 

Weaver’s Lament

by Emma Newman

Series: Industrial Magic #2

Published by Tor.com

Genre: Fantasy Novella, Steampunk

160 pages

Synopsis: Charlotte is learning to control her emerging magical prowess under the secret tutelage of Magus Hopkins. Her first covert mission takes her to a textile mill where the disgruntled workers are apparently in revolt.

But it isn’t the workers causing the trouble. The real culprits are far more extranormal in nature.

And they have a grudge to settle. 

 October 19

A Matter of Loyalty

by Anselm Audley & Elizabeth Edmondson

Series: A Very English Mystery #3

Published by Thomas & Mercer

Genre: Historical Mystery

287 pages

Synopsis: January 1954. Mists cover the hills around Selchester. Someone at the research facility known as the Atomic is leaking secrets to Soviet Russia, and when nuclear scientist Bruno Rothesay goes missing, the British Intelligence Services are convinced he’s the mole. Hugo Hawksworth isn’t so sure. Then a body turns up, and Hugo’s instincts are proven correct. But if Rothesay wasn’t selling secrets to the Soviets, who is?

As Hugo digs deeper into buried connections and unlikely coincidences, he knows there’s more to this case than his London superiors believe. But following his instincts will pit him against the Establishment—and tangle him once again in the poisonous legacy of the late Lord Selchester.

As he closes in on the truth, Hugo finds himself confronted by an adversary who will stop at nothing, in a case that will prove the most personal of his career.

With a touch of Downton Abbey, a whisper of Agatha Christie and a nod to John Le Carré, A Matter Of Loyalty is the third and final book in this delightfully classic and witty murder-mystery series. 

October 31

Barbary Station

by R.E. Stearns

Series: Barbary Station #1

Published by Saga Press

Genre: Science Fiction

384 pages

Synopsis: Adda and Iridian are newly-minted engineers, but in a solar system wracked by economic collapse after an interplanetary war, an engineering degree isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. Desperate for gainful employment, they hijack a colony ship, planning to join a pirate crew at Barbary Station, an abandoned shipbreaking station in deep space.

But when they arrive at Barbary Station, nothing is as they expected. The pirates aren’t living in luxury — they’re hiding in a makeshift base welded onto the station’s exterior hull. The artificial intelligence controlling the station’s security system has gone mad, trying to kill all station residents. And it shoots down any ship that tries to leave, so there’s no way out.

Adda and Iridian have one chance to earn a place on the pirate crew: destroy the artificial intelligence. The last engineer who went up against the security system suffered explosive decapitation, and the pirates are taking bets on how the newcomers will die. But Adda and Iridian plan to beat the odds.

There’s a glorious future in piracy…if they can survive long enough.

What books do you look forward to in October?

Books I want to read during Fall 2017

Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly discussion post on Rainy Day Ramblings where a wide range of topics from books to blogging are discussed.

I’ve decided to try some new memes this fall. I plan to write posts for this discussion meme when I have time and something to say! My books are a mix of books being published this fall and books from my TBR piles–sometimes because a new book in the series is coming out this fall! One trend I notice: lots of good books are coming in October!

Girl Waits with Gun 

by Amy Stewart

Kopp Sisters #1

Historical Mystery

I have had the first book in this series for long time and keep meaning to read it. The third book in the series–Miss Kopp’s Midnight Confessions–comes out in September so it’s past time to read the first book!

Dark Signal

by Shannon Baker

Kate Fox #2

Mystery

Publication Date: October 17

I read the first book–Stripped Bare–in this series last fall and loved it. The series takes place in the Nebraska Sandhills which isn’t an area I was aware of before this book. That’s one of the things I love about reading  . . . books take me to so many new places. I want to find out what happens to Kate in this new book since lots happened in the first book!

Remnants of Trust

by Elizabeth Bonesteel

Central Corps #2

Science Fiction, Space Opera

I read The Cold Between, the first book in this series, a few weeks ago and really liked it so I want to read this one soon–especially since the third book in the series–Breach of Containment–comes out in October!

A Darkness Absolute

by Kelley Armstrong

Casey Duncan #2

Mystery, Thriller

I just finished the first book in this series–City of the Lost and I loved it! It’s a mystery and a thriller set in northern Canada with some romance and it kept me guessing throughout the book. I really like the setting and the idea which forms this series. There are some grisly parts to these books, but I didn’t feel the book dwelled on that and they are part of the story.

Cold as Ice

by Julie Mulhern

The Country Club Murders #6

Historical Mystery, Cozy

Publication Date: October 17

This is one of my favorite mystery series and I’m caught up with this series! So I’m excited a new book is coming out. It’s a really fun series set in the 1970’s–doesn’t seem like that should be historical to me! Hah!

“Weaver’s Lament”

by Emma Newman

Industrial Magic #2

Historical Fantasy, Steampunk, novella

Publication Date: October 17

The first book in the series, “Brother’s Ruin,” came out in the spring and I really liked it so I’m looking forward to reading the second one. I’ve already preordered it.

A Matter of Loyalty

by Anselm Audley and Elizabeth Edmondson

A Very English Mystery #3

Historical Mystery

Publication Date: October 19

I’ve read the first two in this series and they’re really good. I like the characters and the mysteries, too!

Starfire: A Red Peace”

by Spencer Ellsworth

Starfire #1

Science Fiction, Space Opera, novella

The second book in the series comes out in November so I want to get this book read before then so I can read the next one!

Artemis

by Andy Weir

Science Fiction

Publication Date: November 14

I loved The Martian so I’m really looking forward to this book.

A Trail Through Time

by Jodi Taylor

The Chronicles of St. Mary’s #4

Science Fiction, Time Travel, Historical

I’ve read the first three books in this series in the last few months and love them. I want to read this one soon! I love that there are quite a few books in this series so I’m not going to finish the series too soon.

What books do you hope to read this fall? Are you going for the atmospheric and spooky Halloween books? Or do you just have a lot of new books you want to read? Or are you dipping into you TBR pile?

WWW Wednesday: August 30

This meme is hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The idea is to answer the three questions below. For more information check out the Taking on a World of Words blog.

  • What are you reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently reading

Another library ebook–so I need to read it before it expires. It seems like my library has really expanded their digital collection which is great. I’m not too far into this book, but It’s a good read.

City of the Lost by Kelly Armstrong

Casey Duncan #1

Mystery, Thriller, police procedural

Casey Duncan is a homicide detective with a secret: when she was in college, she killed a man. She was never caught, but he was the grandson of a mobster and she knows that someday this crime will catch up to her. Casey’s best friend, Diana, is on the run from a violent, abusive ex-husband. When Diana’s husband finds her, and Casey herself is attacked shortly after, Casey knows it’s time for the two of them to disappear again.

I’m reading a physical copy of this book from the library and don’t always have the book with me (plus I was able to renew it!) so it’s taking awhile to finish the book. I have a Kindle book I’m also reading that I take with me when I’m away from the house.

Arabella and the Battle of Venus by David D. Levine

Adventures of Arabella Ashby #2

Science Fiction, steampunk, alt-history

 

 

 

I listened to more of this audiobook and am enjoying this book set in Iceland. I plan to read more books in this series if they are translated!

Reykjavik Nights: Murder in Reykjavik by Arnaldur Indridason

Audiobook

Translator: Victoria Cobb

Narrator: George Guidall

Inspector Erlendur #0

Mystery, Police Procedural

Recently finished

Both of the books I read are books that were published this month–August. I was happy to find them at my library as ebooks. I can’t afford books–whether they’re ebooks or print books–which cost $9 or more and I’m not going to buy a book from an author I haven’t read before unless it’s under $5.

This was a debut book and I enjoyed reading about Rachel. I haven’t seen anything about a second book, but hope it comes out before too long.

Among the Dead by J.R. Backlund

Rachel Carver #1

Mystery, Police Procedural

 

I read this book quickly since it was due on Monday of this week. This was really different from anything I’ve read for a while and I enjoyed it. It’s contemporary fiction and I’d also call it women’s fiction.

Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta

Series: None

Contemporary Fiction, humor

 

 

 

Reading next

I have the print versions of several library books to read–Wife of the Gods by Kwei Quartey (a mystery set in Africa) and The Branson Beauty by Claire Booth (a mystery taking place near Branson, Missouri). My problem is that I don’t read as many print versions of books. I don’t like to carry the books with me when I leave the house (I want my Kindle for that). I always have my Kindle in my purse. So it sometimes takes me awhile to read a print version as is happening with my Arabella book (see above).

I also want to start A Dragon of a Different Color by Rachel Aaron after all my library books.

What books are you looking forward to reading? What have you read? And what are you reading now?

WWW Wednesday: August 23

This meme is hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The idea is to answer the three questions below. For more information check out the Taking on a World of Words blog.

  • What are you reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently reading

I haven’t read many books this month. I’ve had other things to do plus my eyes are bothering me. Allergies, I think. 😦

I’m reading a physical copy of this book from the library and don’t always have the book with me so it’s taking awhile to finish the book. I have a Kindle book I’m also reading that I take with me when I’m away from the house!

I’m in the middle of this book and I’m enjoying it. I like how this alternate history parallels our history, but puts its own spin on the history. For example, Napoleon is imprisoned on the Moon and that’s where he escapes from!

Arabella and the Battle of Venus by David D. Levine

Adventures of Arabella Ashby #2

Science Fiction, steampunk, alt-history

The thrilling adventures of Arabella Ashby continue in the second book in Hugo-winning author David D. Levine’s swashbuckling sci-fi, alt-history series!

This is a debut book and one I’m enjoying a lot. This is also a library book, but I got it as an ebook from the library. So I’m reading it on my Kindle and hope to finish it before long.

Among the Dead by J.R. Backlund

Rachel Carver #1

Mystery, Police Procedural

Former North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation agent Rachel Carver blames herself for the collateral death of an innocent woman in her last case. Unable to accept her superior’s attempts to cover up the incident, she turned in her badge. But when a former partner asks her to consult on a new murder case, she reluctantly agrees, traveling to a small, remote mountain community, where she’s tasked with leading a group of inexperienced detectives on a hunt for the killer. 

I’m enjoying reading about a police officer in Iceland. I haven’t really connected with Erlendur, but I hope I can find more books and that he comes alive in future books.

Reykjavik Nights: Murder in Reykjavik by Arnaldur Indridason

Translator: Victoria Cobb

Narrator: George Guidall

Inspector Erlendur #0

Mystery, Police Procedural, Audiobook

Erlendur has recently joined the police force as a young officer and immediately sinks into the darkness of Reykjavik’s underworld. Working nights, he discovers the city is full of car crashes, robberies, drinkers and fighters. And sometimes an unexplained death.

A homeless man Erlendur knows is found drowned. But few people care. Or when a young woman on her way home from a club vanishes. Both cases go cold.

Two lost people from two different worlds. Erlendur is not an investigator, but his instincts tell him their fates are worth pursuing. How could they be linked?

 

Recently finished

Science fiction, space opera and a mystery! It’s also a military science fiction, but rather light on the military aspects. I liked it nonetheless. And I already have the second book and hope to read it before too long.

The Cold Between by Elizabeth Bonesteel

Central Corps #1

Science Fiction, Space Opera, Mystery

When her crewmate Danny is murdered on the colony of Volhynia, Central Corps engineer Commander Elena Shaw is shocked to learn the main suspect is her lover, Treiko Zajec. She knows Trey is innocent—he was with her when Danny was killed. So who is the real killer and why are the cops framing an innocent man?

 

I liked this book, too, and look forward to reading the second book in the series. There were quite a few characters so it was a little hard to keep track of all the characters during the narration. That wasn’t helped by the fact that it took me about three weeks to listen to the whole book!

Dark Run by Mike Brooks

Narrator: Damian Lynch

Keiko #1

Science Fiction, space opera

The Keiko is a ship of smugglers, soldiers of fortune and adventurers, travelling Earth’s colony planets searching for the next job. And nobody talks about their past.

 

Reading next

I hope to start Mrs. Fletcher when I finish Among the Dead. It should be a good change of pace. I’ve read lots of good things about this book so I hope I’ll enjoy it.

Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta

Series: None

Contemporary Fiction, humor

Eve Fletcher is trying to figure out what comes next. A forty-six-year-old divorcee whose beloved only child has just left for college, Eve is struggling to adjust to her empty nest when one night her phone lights up with a text message. Sent from an anonymous number, the mysterious sender tells Eve, “U R my MILF!” Over the months that follow, that message comes to obsess Eve. While leading her all-too-placid life—serving as Executive Director of the local senior center by day and taking a community college course on Gender and Society at night—Eve can’t curtail her own interest in a porn website called MILFateria.com, which features the erotic exploits of ordinary, middle-aged women like herself. Before long, Eve’s online fixations begin to spill over into real life, revealing new romantic possibilities that threaten to upend her quiet suburban existence.

Meanwhile, miles away at the state college, Eve’s son Brendan—a jock and aspiring frat boy—discovers that his new campus isn’t nearly as welcoming to his hard-partying lifestyle as he had imagined. Only a few weeks into his freshman year, Brendan is floundering in a college environment that challenges his white-dude privilege and shames him for his outmoded, chauvinistic ideas of sex. As the New England autumn turns cold, both mother and son find themselves enmeshed in morally fraught situations that come to a head on one fateful November night.

Sharp, witty, and provocative, Mrs. Fletcher is a timeless examination of sexuality, identity, parenthood, and the big clarifying mistakes people can make when they’re no longer sure of who they are or where they belong.

This is one of my favorite series so I’m happy to have this book to read. I want to read it soon!

A Dragon of a Different Color by Rachel Aaron

Heartstriker #4

Urban Fantasy

To save his family from his tyrannical mother, Julius had to step on a lot of tails. That doesn’t win a Nice Dragon many friends, but just when he thinks he’s starting to make progress, a new threat arrives.

Turns out, things can get worse. Heartstriker hasn’t begun to pay for its secrets, and the dragons of China are here to collect. When the Golden Emperor demands his surrender, Julius will have to choose between loyalty to the sister who’s always watched over him and preserving the clan he gave everything to protect.

 

What books are you looking forward to reading? What have you read? And what are you reading now?

WWW Wednesday: Aug 9

This meme is hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The idea is to answer the three questions below. For more information check out the Taking on a World of Words blog.

  • What are you reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently reading

I had a nine-hour car ride to and from northern Wisconsin this last weekend. That gave me  time to read–though I still had to talk some to my husband and daughter who were with me. I can’t believe they expected that of me…lol.

……………….

Science fiction, space opera and a mystery! Oh, yes! I’m close to finishing this book and enjoying it so much. Very good. I like the characters and the story. Kind of makes me think of things happening in our world right now.

The Cold Between by Elizabeth Bonesteel

Central Corps #1

Science Fiction, Space Opera, Mystery

When her crewmate Danny is murdered on the colony of Volhynia, Central Corps engineer Commander Elena Shaw is shocked to learn the main suspect is her lover, Treiko Zajec. She knows Trey is innocent—he was with her when Danny was killed. So who is the real killer and why are the cops framing an innocent man?

While retracing Danny’s last hours, they discover that his death may be tied to a mystery from the past: the destruction of a Central Corps starship at a wormhole near Volhynia. For twenty-five years, Central Gov has been lying about the tragedy, even willing to go to war with the outlaw tribe PSI to protect their secrets.

 

I’m still listening to the audiobook and enjoying the it a lot. Not a lot of time or places to listen though.

Dark Run by Mike Brooks

Narrator: Damian Lynch

Keiko #1

Science Fiction, space opera

The Keiko is a ship of smugglers, soldiers of fortune and adventurers, travelling Earth’s colony planets searching for the next job. And nobody talks about their past.

But when a face from Captain Ichabod Drift’s former life send them on a run to Old Earth, all the rules change.

Trust will be broken, and blood will be spilled.

Recently finished

I did finish the latest book in this Rhys Bowen series. Really enjoyed it and hope to have the review up this week.

On Her Majesty’s Frightfully Secret Service by Rhys Bowen

Her Royal Spyness #11

Historical Mystery–1930’s Ireland, England and Italy

Reading next

Several books I had on hold at the library came in last week so I need to and want to read them soon:

Arabella and the Battle of Venus by David D. Levine

Adventures of Arabella Ashby #2

Science Fiction, steampunk, alt-history

The thrilling adventures of Arabella Ashby continue in the second book in Hugo-winning author David D. Levine’s swashbuckling sci-fi, alt-history series!

The swashbuckling Arabella Ashby is back for brand new adventure in the ongoing story of her life among the stars.

Arabella’s wedding plans to marry Captain Singh of the Honorable Mars Trading Company are interrupted when her fiancé is captured by the French and sent to a prisoner-of-war camp on swampy Venus. Now, Arabella must find passage to an enemy-controlled planet in the middle of a war, bribe or fight her way past vicious guards, and rescue her Captain.

To do this she must enlist the help of the dashing privateer, Daniel Fox of the Touchstone and build her own clockwork navigational automaton in order to get to Venus before the dread French general, Joseph Fouché, the Executioner of Lyon.

Once on Venus, Arabella, Singh, and Fox soon discover that Napoleon has designed a secret weapon, one that could subjugate the entire galaxy if they can’t discover a way to stop Fouché, and the entire French army, from completing their emperor’s mandate.

Among the Dead by J.R. Backlund

Rachel Carver #1

Mystery

Former North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation agent Rachel Carver blames herself for the collateral death of an innocent woman in her last case. Unable to accept her superior’s attempts to cover up the incident, she turned in her badge. But when a former partner asks her to consult on a new murder case, she reluctantly agrees, traveling to a small, remote mountain community, where she’s tasked with leading a group of inexperienced detectives on a hunt for the killer. The trek has hardly begun when what seems to be the act of a loner proves to be much more as Rachel’s team comes under attack―and a detective is killed in the fallout.

Now that the stakes have risen, Rachel’s old employers at the SBI step in to take over the investigation. But Rachel, convinced they are on the wrong track, continues to work the case alone. And just as she delves into the town’s past, she discovers a secret history that connects the victims―one that makes her the target of a man who would kill to keep it a secret―in Among the Dead, J. R. Backlund’s gripping mystery debut.

Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta

Series: None

Contemporary Fiction, humor

Eve Fletcher is trying to figure out what comes next. A forty-six-year-old divorcee whose beloved only child has just left for college, Eve is struggling to adjust to her empty nest when one night her phone lights up with a text message. Sent from an anonymous number, the mysterious sender tells Eve, “U R my MILF!” Over the months that follow, that message comes to obsess Eve. While leading her all-too-placid life—serving as Executive Director of the local senior center by day and taking a community college course on Gender and Society at night—Eve can’t curtail her own interest in a porn website called MILFateria.com, which features the erotic exploits of ordinary, middle-aged women like herself. Before long, Eve’s online fixations begin to spill over into real life, revealing new romantic possibilities that threaten to upend her quiet suburban existence.

Meanwhile, miles away at the state college, Eve’s son Brendan—a jock and aspiring frat boy—discovers that his new campus isn’t nearly as welcoming to his hard-partying lifestyle as he had imagined. Only a few weeks into his freshman year, Brendan is floundering in a college environment that challenges his white-dude privilege and shames him for his outmoded, chauvinistic ideas of sex. As the New England autumn turns cold, both mother and son find themselves enmeshed in morally fraught situations that come to a head on one fateful November night.

Sharp, witty, and provocative, Mrs. Fletcher is a timeless examination of sexuality, identity, parenthood, and the big clarifying mistakes people can make when they’re no longer sure of who they are or where they belong.

 

A Dragon of a Different Color by Rachel Aaron

Heartstriker #4

Urban Fantasy

To save his family from his tyrannical mother, Julius had to step on a lot of tails. That doesn’t win a Nice Dragon many friends, but just when he thinks he’s starting to make progress, a new threat arrives.

Turns out, things can get worse. Heartstriker hasn’t begun to pay for its secrets, and the dragons of China are here to collect. When the Golden Emperor demands his surrender, Julius will have to choose between loyalty to the sister who’s always watched over him and preserving the clan he gave everything to protect.

What books are you looking forward to reading? What have you read? And what are you reading now?

July 2017 books on my list

These are the July books on my list. I keep a list of all the books I might want to read and add to it as the year goes on. As each month comes along I create a list on my blog for others and for me to keep track of asbooks-on-my-list the months go by.

I don’t buy all these books–since I already have way too many books to read and some of the new books are expensive. I’m trying to stick to a budget.

I hope people reading my post may find some new books to read. I also hope these people will point me toward books I missed.

June 27

The Right Side

by Spencer Quinn

Series: Unknown

Published by Atria Books

Genre: Mystery

336 pages

Synopsis: LeAnne Hogan went to Afghanistan as a rising star in the military, and came back a much lesser person, mentally and physically. Now missing an eye and with half her face badly scarred, she can barely remember the disastrous desert operation that almost killed her. She is confused, angry, and suspects the fault is hers, even though nobody will come out and say it.

Shattered by one last blow—the sudden death of her hospital roommate, Marci—LeAnne finds herself on a fateful drive across the country, reflecting on her past and seeing no future. Her native land is now unfamiliar, recast in shadow by her one good eye, her damaged psyche, and her weakened body. Arriving in the rain-soaked small town in Washington state that Marci had called home, she makes a troubling discovery: Marci’s eight-year-old daughter has vanished. When a stray dog—a powerful, dark, unreadable creature, no one’s idea of a pet—seems to adopt LeAnne, a surprising connection is formed and something shifts inside her. As she becomes obsessed with finding Marci’s daughter, LeAnne and her inscrutable canine companion are drawn into danger as dark and menacing as her last Afghan mission. This time she has a strange but loyal fellow traveler protecting her blind side.

July 4

Cold Hearted River

by Keith McCafferty

Series: Sean Stranahan #6

Published by Viking

Genre: Mystery

318 pages

Synopsis: A story of lost treasure, Cold Hearted River begins with the death of a woman, stranded in a spring snowstorm, who in desperation climbs into a bear s den. When Sheriff Martha Ettinger, reunited with once-again lover Sean Stranahan, investigates, she finds a fly wallet in a pannier of the dead woman’s horse, the leather engraved with the initials EH. Only a few days before, Patrick Willoughby, the president of the Madison River Liars and Fly Tiers Club, had been approached by a man selling fishing gear that he claims once belonged to Ernest Hemingway. A coincidence? Sean doesn’t think so, and he soon finds himself on the trail of a missing steamer trunk rumored to contain not only the famous writer’s valuable fly fishing gear, but priceless samples of his unpublished work. The investigation will take Sean through extraordinary chapters in Hemingway’s life.

Inspired by a true story, Cold Hearted River is a thrilling adventure, moving from Montana to Michigan, where a woman grapples with the secrets in her heart, to a cabin in Wyoming, to the Froze To Death Plateau in Montana, and finally to the ruins in Havana, where an old man struggles to complete his life’s mission one true sentence at a time. 

The Harbors of the Sun

by Martha Wells

Series: The Books of the Raksura #5

Published by Night Shade Books

Genre: Fantasy

416 pages

Synopsis: A former friend has betrayed the Raksura and their groundling companions, and now the survivors must race across the Three Worlds to rescue their kidnapped family members. When Moon and Stone are sent ahead to scout, they quickly encounter an unexpected and potentially deadly ally, and decide to disobey the queens and continue the search alone. Following in a wind-ship, Jade and Malachite make an unlikely alliance of their own, until word reaches them that the Fell are massing for an attack on the Reaches, and that forces of the powerful Empire of Kish are turning against the Raksura and their groundling comrades.

But there may be no time to stage a rescue, as the kidnapped Raksura discover that their captors are heading toward a mysterious destination with a stolen magical artifact that will cause more devastation for the Reaches than anything the lethal Fell can imagine. To stop them, the Raksura will have to take the ultimate risk and follow them into forbidden territory.

The Harbors of the Sun, from celebrated fantasy author Martha Wells, is the thrilling follow-up to The Edge of Worlds, and the conclusion of a new Three Worlds duology of strange lands, uncanny beings, dead cities, and ancient danger. 

July 10

The Ghost Line

by Andrew Neil Gray & J.S. Herbison

Series: Unknown

Published by Tor.com

Genre: Science Fiction Novella

73 pages

Synopsis: The luxury cruise ship the Martian Queen was decommissioned years ago, set to drift back and forth between Earth and Mars on the off-chance that reclaiming it ever became profitable for the owners. For Saga and her husband Michel the cruise ship represents a massive payday. Hacking and stealing the ship could earn them enough to settle down, have children, and pay for the treatments to save Saga’s mother’s life.

But the Martian Queen is much more than their employer has told them. In the twenty years since it was abandoned, something strange and dangerous has come to reside in the decadent vessel. Saga feels herself being drawn into a spider’s web, and must navigate the traps and lures of an awakening intelligence if she wants to go home again.

July 11

Another Man’s Ground

by Claire Booth

Series: Sheriff Hank Worth #2

Published by Minotaur Books

Genre: Mystery, Police Procedural

320 pages

Synopsis: Called out to investigate the theft of elm tree bark (who knew it made a valuable herbal supplement?), Branson, MO Sheriff Hank Worth meets the talkative and combustible property owner, Vern Miles, who is trying to make enough money off the land he just inherited to pay the taxes on it.

The thieves have stripped so much of the bark that the trees are now dying, so Miles decides to go ahead and cut the whole grove down. The only thing is, he uses undocumented workers to do it, and when Hank and Sam stop by the clearing in the woods to check on things, the whole crew takes off like a flock of birds. One unfortunate runaway laborer tumbles into a deep crevice and lands on not one, but two bodies—a month-old rotten corpse and a decades-old child skeleton.

Hank suddenly finds himself in the midst of two separate murder investigations, not to mention tree bark theft, all while running for re-election as county sheriff. 

Dark Sky

by Mike Brooks

Series: Keiko #2

Published by Saga Press

Genre: Science Fiction, Space Opera

384 pages

Synopsis: In the sequel to the thrilling Dark Run, which Publishers Weeklycalled “a terrific debut,” Ichabod Drift and his crew sign on for a new smuggling job that soon goes south when they are separated and caught up in a dangerous civil war.

When Ichabod Drift and the Keiko crew sign on for a new smuggling job to a mining planet, they don’t realize what they are up against. The miners, badly treated for years by the corporation, are staging a rebellion. Split into two groups, one with the authorities and one with the rebels, Drift and his crew support their respective sides in the conflict. But when they are cut off from each other due to a communication blackout, both halves of the crew don’t realize that they have begun fighting themselves…

July 18

Arabella and the Battle of Venus

by David D. Levine

Series: Adventures of Arabella Ashby #2

Published by Tor Books

Genre: Science Fiction, Steampunk

432 pages

Synopsis: Arabella’s wedding plans to marry Captain Singh of the Honorable Mars Trading Company are interrupted when her fiancé is captured by the French and sent to a prisoner-of-war camp on swampy Venus. Now, Arabella must find passage to an enemy-controlled planet in the middle of a war, bribe or fight her way past vicious guards, and rescue her Captain.

To do this she must enlist the help of the dashing privateer, Daniel Fox of the Touchstone and build her own clockwork navigational automaton in order to get to Venus before the dread French general, Joseph Fouché, the Executioner of Lyon.

Once on Venus, Arabella, Singh, and Fox soon discover that Napoleon has designed a secret weapon, one that could subjugate the entire galaxy if they can’t discover a way to stop Fouché, and the entire French army, from completing their emperor’s mandate.

And the Rest is History

by Jodi Taylor

Series: The Chronicles of St. Mary’s #8

Published by Night Shade Books

Genre: Science Fiction, Time Travel

348 pages

Synopsis: No one knows quite how, but Max and her baby are safe at last.

No one knows quite how, but Peterson has persuaded Dr Foster to marry him.

No one knows quite how, but Markham’s marital status remains unknown.

Certainly no one knows quite how a twelve-foot-high teapot could mysteriously materialise on the South Lawn, but it does.

But they do know that Clive Ronan is back.

They do know that he hates them and that this time he has good cause. And they do know that he will bring death and destruction in his wake.

Follow the disaster magnets of St Mary’s from the Egyptian desert to the Battle of Stamford Bridge, from Hastings to the Sack of Constantinople, and from tragedy to triumph and back again, in this, the eighth book in The Chronicles of St Mary’s.

July 25

Wildfire

by Ilona Andrews

Series: Hidden Legacy #3

Published by Avon

Genre: Urban Fantasy Romance

384 pages

Synopsis: Just when Nevada Baylor has finally come to accept the depths of her magical powers, she also realizes she’s fallen in love. Connor “Mad” Rogan is in many ways her equal when it comes to magic, but she’s completely out of her elements when it comes to her feelings for him. To make matters more complicated, an old flame comes back into Rogan’s life…

Rogan knows there’s nothing between him and his ex-fiance, Rynda Sherwood. But as Nevada begins to learn more about her past, her power, and her potential future, he knows she will be faced with choices she never dreamed of and the promise of a life spent without him.

As Nevada and Rogan race to discover the whereabouts of Rynda’s kidnapped husband and are forced to confront Nevada’s grandmother, who may or may not have evil motives, these two people must decide if they can trust in each other or allow everything to go up in smoke.

July 28

A Dragon of a Different Color

by Rachel Aaron

Series: Heartstriker #4

Published by Aaron/Bach, LLC

Genre: Urban Fantasy

pages

Synopsis: To save his family from his tyrannical mother, Julius had to step on a lot of tails. That doesn’t win a Nice Dragon many friends, but just when he thinks he’s starting to make progress, a new threat arrives. Turns out, things can get worse. Heartstriker hasn’t begun to pay for its secrets, and the dragons of China are here to collect. When the Golden Emperor demands his surrender, Julius will have to choose between loyalty to the sister who’s always watched over him and preserving the clan he gave everything to protect.