Mid-Month Update: May 2019

Hey friends, I’m back!

The end of April to the beginning of this month has meant slow progress for reading. It’s a busy time in year, so no shame in that, but my TBR has relentlessly piled up in the meantime. Between some really amazing Book Outlet deals (the entire Shades of Magic trilogy for $15!), a couple gifted copies, and a splurge at my local indie bookstores to celebrate a promotion at work I’ll be busy for months. On top of all of that, a slew of highly anticipated winter 2020 releases dropped on Edelweiss and I got approved for nearly a dozen books that I requested months ago, so my kindle has been inundated as well. As far as reads in this past month, there isn’t a whole lot to rave about except Birthday (review on 5/21) but I’ve finally picked up Red, White, and Royal Blue (I know, I’m late to the party, but it’s fiiine) and so far it’s quite good. So without further ado, here’s a look at what I’m currently reading, what I’ve added to my TBR in the past month, and a book I can’t wait to read. Pro tip: if you’re just here to skim, check out the titles in blue.

Currently Reading

Red, White & Royal Blue

Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

A big-hearted romantic comedy in which First Son Alex falls in love with Prince Henry of Wales after an incident of international proportions forces them to pretend to be best friends.

First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations. The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince.”

Amazon | Book Depository | Goodreads

Continue reading “Mid-Month Update: May 2019”

This Post Couldn’t Wait: The Seep

I know this post is coming at you in the middle of a hiatus, but bear with me, it’s exciting.

So, I was browsing Edelweiss+ on this Friday night in and, as usual, I check out the LGBT+ review copies first. Of the 3,913 DRCs available for request or download as I write this, there are 6 in that category (which is heinous, but I won’t dwell on that for this post).

But anyways, 6. That’s one more than yesterday, so yay! So, among the titles I’ve been seeing on repeat for weeks, what’s new? The Seep by Chana Porter.

45448133“A blend of searing social commentary and speculative fiction, Chana Porter’s fresh, pointed debut is perfect for fans of Jeff VanderMeer and Carmen Maria Machado.

Trina Goldberg-Oneka is a trans woman whose life is irreversibly altered in the wake of a gentle—but nonetheless world-changing—invasion by an alien entity calling itself The Seep. Through The Seep, everything is connected. Capitalism falls, hierarchies and barriers are broken down; if something can be imagined, it is possible.

Trina and her wife, Deeba, live blissfully under The Seep’s utopian influence—until Deeba begins to imagine what it might be like to be reborn as a baby, which will give her the chance at an even better life. Using Seep-tech to make this dream a reality, Deeba moves on to a new existence, leaving Trina devastated.

Heartbroken and deep into an alcoholic binge, Trina chases after a young boy she encounters, embarking on an unexpected quest. In her attempt to save him from The Seep, she will confront not only one of its most avid devotees, but the terrifying void that Deeba has left behind.”

When I say my heart was palpitating as I read this description, that was no exaggeration. Queer representation in this sort of genre-bending speculative fiction is extremely rare – all that I’ve seen recently amounts to a couple short stories in the first volume of Today, Tomorrow, Always (review here). So, if it wasn’t readily apparent, I’m insanely excited about this book and you can count on me chatting about it for the rest of this year.

The Seep will be released on January 21, 2020. It’s a long way off, but you can always save time later by adding it to your Goodreads TBR now!  Continue reading “This Post Couldn’t Wait: The Seep”

Monthly Wrap Up: April 2019

This month 6 books were reviewed on The Book Stack with an average rating of 4.2 stars. On top of reviews I was tagged by Siobhan to participate in The Mystery Blogger Award tag, and I really loved getting to read all of your answers. Though this was a light month for reading, I think I was as lucky as I could be with what was up for review. So, without further ado, my favorites of the month.  Continue reading “Monthly Wrap Up: April 2019”

Mid-Month Update: April 2019

Hello, friends! I had a little dilemma last month as I put together the March Wrap-Up. I really love reading posts about what you’re currently reading, what’s on your TBR, and books you’ve recently hauled. Instead of churning out a bunch of updates out on top of the Monthly Wrap-Up, I figured I’d put together a mid-month update of this fun stuff to try and spread the book chat around.

Currently Reading

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The Book of the Moon by Maggie Aderin-Pocock

In her lucidly written, comprehensive guide to the moon, Aderin-Pocock takes readers on a journey to our closest celestial neighbor, exploring folklore, facts, and future plans.
       
She begins with the basics, unpacking everything from the moon’s topography and composition to its formation and orbit around the Earth. She travels back in time to track humanity’s relationship with the moon — beliefs held by ancient civilizations, the technology that allowed for the first moon landing, a brief history of moongazing, and how the moon has influenced culture throughout the years — and then to the future, analyzing the pros and cons of continued space travel and exploration. Throughout the book are sidebars, graphs, and charts to enhance the facts as well as black-and-white illustrations of the moon and stars. The Book of the Moon will be published for the 50th anniversary of the moon landing.” – Summary from Goodreads.

Continue reading “Mid-Month Update: April 2019”

Advance Review: The Time Collector

★★★☆☆41711272

I have such mixed feelings about this book. I loved the premise and I wanted to love the story, but it wasn’t meant to be.

The Time Collector focuses on a group of gifted individuals known as psychometrists. Psychometrists range in their strength, but all share the ability to discern the past of objects the touch. Our male protagonist, Roan West, is one of the most powerful psychometrists among their small numbers. Roan has become increasingly worried with the disappearances of several psychometrists across the globe, including one of his closest friends. Then arises the problem of Melicent Tilpin.

Melicent is a young woman scraping by as she tries to balance work and raising her teenage brother following their mother’s recent death. She’s also a psychometrist whose powers have newly awakened. After peering into the past of objects found at flea markets and antique swaps, Melicent find herself on Antiques Roadshow where her items are appraised for tens of thousands of dollars and she’s admitted her gift to the world. Upon seeing the video Roan rushes across the country to warn Melicent, hoping she’ll listen.

The greatest triumph of The Time Collector is Gwendolyn Womack’s skill as a writer. This book touches on phenomena like out-of-place artifacts (OOPArts), crop circles, and more as Womack spins a tale that spans all of Earth’s breadth and history. I went in with very little foreknowledge of many of the phenomena she describes, but I never found myself lost in the explanations – the world she creates is easy to slip in to and enjoy. Some of the chapters that I enjoyed most were those where as a character reads an imprint, you are transported back in time. From 18th century Vienna to South Korea on the cusp of The Forgotten War, these periods are captured with incredible realism that drew me in despite their intrusion into the main plot.

So here’s the caveat of all this: I just didn’t like the romantic aspect. I was pulled in by the tension between Melicent and Roan through the first half of their story, but once the romantic tension was dissipated everything seemed to lose momentum. I’m also seldom a fan of stories where two characters are fully in love in a matter of just days. I tried to see past it because there was so much else that I enjoyed, but it ultimately left me feeling a little disappointed as I finished this book. I’m certain The Time Collector will be the perfect read for many people, just not me. Continue reading “Advance Review: The Time Collector”