It’s the last day of the year which means it’s time for my Best Reads of 2019 post! I’d hoped to write one more review before the end of the year but that isn’t gonna happen. That’s fine though because I have what I need for this list already. And while I didn’t read as many books as I’d hoped this year I did read some really good ones!
2019 was another great year for speculative fiction. I’ve heard it said by many readers that we are in a new golden age of spec fic. I think that’s true. Much of that has to do with some great new authors being published by traditional publishing houses, but a lot of that has to do with the rise of really great books coming out of the self-published/indie publishing realm.
What follows below are those books I read this year (regardless of publication date) that I rated a 4.5 or 5 out of 5 stars. There were a total of eight books to make the list. Of this group there was one self-published title, and two formerly self-published titles that were picked up by a major publisher, one of which hasn’t actually been published yet but I read the ARC. I’ll start with the 4.5 group, move to the 5.0 group, and finish with my favorite book of the year. Apart from the final book there is no particular order to this list other than the two main groupings. Continue reading
Well February is pretty much in the books, time for another month in review post. If I’m being honest with myself I’m a little disappointed in my output this month. I’d hoped to have at least one more if not two more reviews posted but that just didn’t happen. For some reason my reading pace slowed down this month so I didn’t read everything I’d planned, and I kinda blew off one whole weekend when I’d normally have finished a review. I think in part I was just tired, and in part I wanted to do some family stuff. There was also that week where 3 of the 5 staff in my department at work had the flu which meant I was really worn out that week. I did however do some maintenance on the blog which wasn’t something I’d planned…so maybe I’ll call it a draw. Anyway, here’s what happened this month on Off The TBR.
Author: Katherine Arden
Series: Winternight Trilogy Book One
Publisher: Del Rey
Publication Date: January 10, 2017 (Hardcover)
Format: Paperback (June 27, 2017)
“Winter lasts most of the year at the edge of the Russian wilderness, and in the long nights, Vasilisa and her siblings love to gather by the fire to listen to their nurse’s fairy tales. Above all, Vasya loves the story of Frost, the blue-eyed winter demon. Wise Russians fear him, for he claims unwary souls, and they honor the spirits that protect their homes from evil.
Then Vasya’s widowed father brings home a new wife from Moscow. Fiercely devout, Vasya’s stepmother forbids her family from honoring their household spirits, but Vasya fears what this may bring. And indeed, misfortune begins to stalk the village.
But Vasya’s stepmother only grows harsher, determined to remake the village to her liking and o groom her rebellious stepdaugher for marriage or a convent. As the village’s defenses weaken and evil from the forest creeps nearer, Vasilisa must call upon dangerous gifts she has concealed – to protect her family from a threat sprung to life from her nurse’s most frightening tales.”
Oh man…this book. I’ll be honest, I didn’t know if I was going to like it when I set out to read it. Yeah I’d seen a lot of reviews rating it highly but I still wasn’t sure it was for me. Boy was I wrong…this was so me.
Arden weaves a modern story that feels like a fairy tale set in medieval northern Rus. It is atmospheric and bewitching, with captivating prose and compelling characters that will transport you to another time and place. A place so richly described you can smell the earth, feel the cold, and sense the spirit world around you. Continue reading
Nicole over at Thoughts Stained With Ink talked me into trying out this post topic last month and I’m giving it another go. This isn’t something I usually do because I hate locking myself into a specific reading list. It just never works out for me. And as my Month In Review for January revealed, though I read more books than I’d set out to read, only half of them were from my original list.
So my ongoing rule for this topic will be…
So yeah…I’m gonna look at them as more what you’d call guidelines and post my monthly reading goals. These are goals, or guidelines for what I would like to read during the month. I reserve the right at any time to chase the next shiny object that comes by and read something else. I also add the disclaimer that life can get in the way at any time. With those things being said, here’s my list of reads for February 2019… Continue reading