Reading: inbox-outbox for 13 Dec

Another strong week for reading! I finally finished The Algebraist and I’m only one book away from meeting my annual reading goal of 36 books.

Here’s what I’ve been up to in my book life this week…

Inbox (books acquired)

  • Reluctantly Royal (Suddenly Royal book #3) by Nichole Chase (kindle) — I picked this up on a whim… I had some Amazon credits for opting to ship things the slow way, so I decided to get myself a little book candy. This is the third (and last) book of the “Royals” series that started with Suddenly Royal. I read the first two and debated skipping the third, but I read the sample chapter and decided I’d give it a chance. (More on this below…)
  • To Ride Pegasus (The Talents Saga book #1) by Anne McCaffrey (kindle) — I’ve been wanting to re-read this one for a while now. I think this may have been the first “young adult” science fiction book that I read as a teen. It was my introduction to Anne McCaffrey and kicked off the Talents series. I went on to devour the remaining books in this series in short order and eventually moved on to several of her other series. I’ve been keeping an eye out and I’ve noticed that the publishers are slowly making her books available on Kindle. I don’t think this entire series is available yet, but the first three books are, as are some of the Rowen series that also take place in this world. I probably won’t read this right away, but I am looking forward to revisiting the start of one of my favorite series by one of my favorite authors.

Outbox (books finished)

  • Reluctantly Royal (Suddenly Royal book #3) by Nichole Chase (kindle) — Book three in this series, like the first two, is an easy-reading, hot and steamy, contemporary, if slightly fantastical, romance. Like the others, it is light on plot and the story is mostly driven by the will-they / won’t-they physical attraction of the two main characters. Except you pretty much know they will. It’s just a matter of when, or how many times. Ahem. Anyway… I liked this one better than the second book, but not as much as the first book. I like the story, plot, and characters in the first book best. The male lead in this one was a little too possessive for my tastes (I got a lot of Twilight series vibes…), and the over-use of the noun “fist” as an adjective to describe the action of grabbing someone’s shirt or hair, etc., I found to be distracting and a little off-putting. But, if you’re looking for a steamy romance and have already read the first two, grab this one, or just read the first book, skip the second, and then read this one.
  • Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty by Christine Heppermann (hardcover) — I really wanted to like this little book of poetry. I liked the concept (flipping around fairy-tale ideals to empower modern young women), but I’m pretty far removed from my teenage angst and I’m not really a poetry person. Even when I was a teen, I was never one of those young girls who wrote poetry. I don’t read poetry. The only poetry I’ve found that I really like is in the lyrics of some singer / song-writers. So, I’m clearly not the target audience for this book. Perhaps unsurprisingly, I just couldn’t really get into it. I think maybe it’s great for some young girl out there, maybe many young girls, girls who are struggling with body image or eating disorders or relationships and the ideals of love and friendship. But too many of the poems seemed to be saying the same thing, and saying it in a way that just didn’t resonate with me. It just wasn’t for me. So I’m going to pass it on.
  • The Algebraist by Iain M. Banks (library hardcover) — This epic space opera was my first introduction to Iain M. Banks. It was also an epic slow read for me, mostly because there are a lot of made up names for worlds and characters and futuristic space traveling activities that you need to sort out and remember. But, all that imaginative fake science was worth it. The book addressed several meaty concepts and themes through tight world-building. One surprising highlight of this book was the well-written, funny, realistic, and engaging conversation between the characters. Not something you usually get in a classic space opera. Another surprising highlight was the almost two page character rant on meeting culture. I guess even in the space traveling distant future, some things never change. You may have some difficulty finding a copy of this book (I had to rely on my trusty library), but if you’re a space opera enthusiast, I recommend you pick this one up.

Queue (what I’m reading next)

  • I haven’t decided yet… but I’ll probably read The Giver next… bu, it’s a pretty short book, so I’m sure I’ll have time for something else…
  • I may also read the next book in the Crystal Singer series… Killashandra
  • Or… one of the many books I purchased earlier this year and are sitting in my virtual TBR pile on my Kindle…

Since I am only one book away from my 2014 reading goal, and since some of the books I read this year were quite short, and since I still have a stack of books I’d like to get through before the end of this year, I’m going to see if I can achieve a stretch goal of 40 books read in 2014. That’s only five more books. I can do that easy, right?