I’m going to try and be brief about these books. I didn’t do a wrap-up last week as things were hectic and I was being an adult and driving in and out of town. To be honest some of the books I read last week are a bit fuzzy, so those for sure will be short. Two of them as well are review books that you should see full length reviews on shortly! As always there is a video, link to the channel is on the sidebar, if you’d rather listen to me stumble around than read it.
First up was Raptor: A Journey Through Birds by James MacDonald Lockhart. Mr. Lockhart looks at the diaries of the English writer who helped French Mr. James Audobon to right his book on birds. William MacGillivray, the co-writer, made an 800 mile walk from Aberdeen to London in 1819 and Mr. Lockhart uses that walk and makes a similar journey from place to place to look at the 15 native raptors to the UK. He weaves so well together the history of these different towns and locations, with his own observations, MacGillivray’s diaries, and the actual natural information about birds that the book was a fast and enjoyable read. I unfortunately don’t think I remember a whole lot of the solid facts from it, but I enjoyed the experience immensely.
Next I read the two SF books I’m not going to talk about as I’m reviewing them. They are : An Oath of Dogs by Wendy N. Wagner and The Ghost Line by Andrew Neil Gray & J. S. Herbison. Both were fun and enjoyed them. Nothing mind blowing, but fun. Look forward to those reviews soon!
I then read two romances, one better than the other honestly. The first was The
Magpie Lord by K.J. Charles. This follows Lucien Vaudry (Lord Crane) as he returns from China where he was banished to die by his mad father. On returning to England he nearly succumbs to the same curse that killed his mad father and equally mad brother. His manservant and closest friend calls in a magician, because this is world in which magic is an accepted part of reality, Stephen Day. The plot follows the men as they work to find out who and why the Crane family is cursed and things get a little naughty on the side. I’ll definitely say, the sexy bits in this one (never my favorite bits to begin with) were hyper naughty. They had a control/submit dynamic to them so they got real… well real naughty. Besides that the plot was the central portion of the story and enjoyed it a great deal. I will definitely be continuing this series.
The next romance, which I won’t be continuing, was A Kiss of Steel by Bec McMaster. This was a steampunk romance with (sort of) vampires. I was not a huge fan of this for two reasons. The first is the world and world building. I feel like I’ve read this before, and it was maybe done a bit better. The sort-of-vampires are in control, using a figurehead of a queen to make it seem as if humans have power. The main character Honoria flees the House that sponosored her father’s research after he was murdered and ends up in the Rookeries. There she becomes entwined with Blade, the sort-of-vampire that rules the place. The second big issue I had was with the relationship here. There were some serious, serious consent issues here. The repeated scenes of Honor saying ‘No’ and Blade just pushing himself on her made me super uncomfortable. This was almost a DNF. If it hadn’t read so fast it would have been. So not one I recommend.
Guys. I finished War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy next. I won’t say much. Just a few things here. I really enjoyed this and it wasn’t what I expected. I really recommend it and I found it really readable. There were definitely some parts that’ll make you go cross eyed but overall it was so worth it and I really liked it.
Finally the last book I finished, today in fact, was Borne by Jeff Vandermeer. This is the story of a woman raising a not-so-human child in a post-apocalyptic city ruled by a giant Godzilla sized bear that flies and it’s progeny. I’m not sure how anyone says not to that summation, I’m quite proud of it. This was a great book, and of these reads the one I recommend the most. It’s weird SF that handles topics like what it is to be a person, what makes you human and ‘a person’ as opposed to something else. It looks at the nature of love in it’s own way as well and it was just great. Great, great. For me this was so much better than the Southern Reach Trilogy – if you’re not sure what to read of his work then make it this one. It was amazing.
That was it! You should see two review posts from me, a TBR for next week and maybe an unboxing. Always keep an eye on the Youtube as well – sometimes things get up there but not here. Thanks for reading guys!