28 February 2009

What I am reading: February 2009

  1. Cruel Zinc Melodies by Glen Cook: It's been quite a while since Cook has published one of his hard-boiled detective, Archie Goodwin pastiche set in a serious fantasy world. It was a great read and tied well into the series. It's a great relief to read a series whose author actually keeps track of and cares for the details of his creation and his characters.
  2. Legacy by Jeanne C. Stein: Sequel to The Becoming, following Anna Strong's development after her involuntary change to a vampire, as she begins to deal with her change and how it affects her relationships outside her new paranormal environment.
  3. Living with the Dead by Kelley Armstrong: Armstrong keeps changing this series up by following ancillary characters after completing story arcs.This is the second story starring Hope Adams as she comes to terms with her Chaos demon powers and we explore different abiities and peoples than we have explored before. Interesting look at a clairvoyant community that uses Roma archetypes.
  4. Undead and Unworthy by Mary Janice Davidson: How can Ms. Davidson feel comfortable allowing her (hard back) novel to be priced at $23.50 US when she is using what appears to be double spaced 14 point type? I think this was actually a novella. I have seen this before, with her Fred the Mermaid books but this is over the edge. Although I am enjoying her light and frothy romances with Sinclair and Betsy, Queen of the Vampires, from now on all books by Ms. Davidson will be purchased in paperback. And if the point size and leading remain the same, I think I will only be buying used.
  5. Wolfsbane and Mistletoe edited by Charlaine Harris and Toni Kelner: This is a collection of short stories (obviously with a werewolf and holiday season theme) that I am getting a bit late--- I pre-order books through Amazon in the US and my family kindly M-bags them to me when the collection gets large enough. It was vastly superior to the above book, was 50 pages longer, several square inches larger (!!!) and used standard size fonts and leading. There must have been more than twice as many words for the same price. And more interesting ones as well. I very much enjoyed the big bame stories by Charlaine Harris, Briggs, and Vaughan, a non-cover titled Karen Chance story, and also discovered what I thought was the best story: Fresh Meat by Alan Gordon, whose work I haven't seen before. That's the best part of a collection from someone who has done a good job as editor: meeting new authors whose work I can now seek out elsewhere.
  6. House of Many Ways by Diana Wynne Jones: A charming edition by Harper Collins, with illustrations. Not quite a sequel to Howl's Moving Castle, but another book in which Howl and Sophie appear and are developing characters. Although I was unhappy with the large type, at leat the lovely illos partially made up for it. Children's Fantasy.
  7. The Art of Detection by Laurie R. King:published in 2006 by Poisoned Pen Press in the UK, I picked this up last month in London and greatly enjoyed it. I hadn't read one of King's Kate Martinelli books in some time (I miss my books, left behind in the US) and although I stay on top of her other Mary Russell (Holmes) series I had missed this one, which is a pity. In this book, King merges her two series in a fascinating way as a perhaps apocryphal piece of Holmesian and some discusiion of a modern-day group of Irregulars form the basis of Martinelli's case. An underlying theme is that of gay and lesbian marriage in both the past and the present. A moving book. While looking at Ms. King's website I see that her next Russell book will be out this year and I look forward to it.
  8. Evil Ways by Justin Gustainis: Sequel to Black Magic Woman (which I read after winning it on Amber's blog), I picked this up in London as well. An interesting new series, pairing a supernatural investigator eponymously named descendent of Quincey Morris and his sometime partner, a white witch against various threats. Reminiscet of Kerr on occassion.
  9. This Must be the Place by Anna Winger:Set in Berlin in 2001, I will discuss this at greater length in another post.

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