Time to spend those gift cards ON BOOKS

While we’re out of town at a huge NYE bash (well, while #1 is out of town at a huge NYE bash… #2 is probably currently driving in the snow from one small rural town to another, thank goodness for audible), let us give you some suggestions for how to spend all that money you got for Christmas/Yule/Hanukkah/Year-end bonus/blackmailing that guy, or whatever kind of denominational or non-denominational holiday-type thing you might have.

These are books I have LOVED from the library.  So many to love!

The Midnight Queen by Sylvia Izzo Hunter.  Love it, love it, repeatedly recommended it.

I’ve been enjoying Will Thomas’s series starting with Some Danger Involved.  Fascinatingly diverse Victorian London murder mysteries.

Emerald House Rising by Peg Kerr.  Light high fantasy, sure to become a future soothing read (sadly out of print but ILL it if you can!).  Standalone, happy ending.

The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison.  Also fantasy: court intrigue, fish-out-of-water.

Clariel, the Lost Abhorsen by Garth Nix.  I like the Abhorsen series and this is a prequel.

What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding: A Memoir, by Kristin Newman.  I like memoirs.

No Castles Here by A.C.E. Bauer.  A poor kid from the barrio finds a magical book of tales…

The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby.  Essays about books and reading.  Two of my favorite things.

Moth and Spark by Anne Leonard.  Another fantasy to recommend repeatedly.

Dear Committee Members, by Julie Schumacher contains the recommendation letters I wish I could have written as a pre-tenure faculty member.  Epistolary, funny, but not a happy ending.

Otherbound by Corinne Duyvis.  Are you sensing a YA theme here?

The Silvered by Tanya Huff.  I mean, it’s Tanya Huff!

Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography.  Heartwarming and amusing; worth getting in hard copy so you can flip around for an authentic choose-your-own-adventure experience.  (#2 fully enjoyed this one too, and was actually ok about spending full price for a hard copy in an airport bookstore when she discovered she’d forgotten her kindle.  It was worth it!)

Books I was NOT keen on:

Is Everyone Hanging out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling.  Really not as good as Bossypants; I didn’t finish it.

Shadow’s Son by Jon Sprunk:  was doing ok until Rape As A Plot Point.  Bzzzt!


This post isn’t all the books I’ve been reading, not by a long shot!  But it has just a few of the things that I think you might like to read.  Not exhaustive, though maybe exhausting.

Any more suggestions???

18 Responses to “Time to spend those gift cards ON BOOKS”

  1. Bardiac Says:

    You’ve recommended Seanan McGuire in the past; what would you suggest I start with, if I can find it in the local library, please?

  2. independentclause Says:

    I loved “Moth and Spark.” My newest (urban) fantasy find is “The Grendel Affair” by Lisa Shearin. Also, in terms of essays/memoir, I’ve been reading “Bad Indians” by Deborah Miranda and “Island of Bones” by Joy Castro. Joy Castro’s mystery story, “Hell or High Water” is also quite excellent. It’s been a good reading month.

  3. Leah Says:

    The best book I’ve read in the last year is Molokai, by Alan Brennart (historical fiction about Hansen’s disease/leprosy). I also really enjoyed A Drowned Maiden’s Hair for some light-hearted fun.

  4. chacha1 Says:

    My best books picks for 2014.
    Quentin and the Cave Boy” by Susan Gabriel, for young readers.
    Happy Birthday Madame Chapeau” by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts, a picture book.
    Apollo 13” by Jeffrey Kluger and Jim Lovell, for teens and up.
    Stickeen” by John Muir, all ages.
    Elwha, a River Reborn” by Lynda V. Mapes with photography by Steven Ringman, teens and up.
    The Diamond Smugglers” by Ian Fleming, for history/thriller buffs.
    Clutch of Constables” by Ngaio Marsh, for lovers of golden-age mystery.
    Discovered” by Alexandra Caluen (that would be me), for historical-romance fans. :-)

  5. chacha1 Says:

    p.s. I really like that Will Thomas series. I see it adapted for film starring Daniel Radcliffe and Liam Neeson. :-)

  6. J Liedl Says:

    I’ve adored the books that I’ve read in Mary Balogh’s new, ongoing series “The Survivors’ Club” which follows a group of Napoleonic war veterans. I think we’re on book four now? Ashlyn Macnamara’s new trilogy of Regency ebooks featuring some heroines who really think for themselves is now complete. I loved them all. Anything by Courtney Milan is always tops and she wrapped up her “Brothers Sinister” series this year with several great stories.

    Deborah Harkness wrapped up her All Souls trilogy this summer – a great contemporary fantasy romance with grand historical elements and some really intriguing genetic science grounding the whole work.

    For mysteries, I’ve loved the Potting Shed series by Marty Wingate featuring an older heroine reconnecting with her English relations.

    Katha Pollitt’s “Pro” was one of my Christmas books and I devoured it in two days. My only complaint is that it was too short.

  7. Savvy Says:

    I was beginning to think I was the only one who didn’t care for Kaling’s book. I didn’t finish it either.

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