Booking Ahead: July 2021

Booking Ahead is an opportunity to glance through my never-ending TBR list/pile and select a few potential reads for the coming month. If I’m not reading books I love talking about books I’d like to read, so this post is a perfect excuse to do just that.

It’s time to select a few potential reads for the coming month. I’m going to list a few titles but the first book I must mention is the next in the Dark Tower series, Wizard and Glass. It’s a very long book, so I may be being a bit overly-optimistic with the rest of this list but there are quite a few books I’d like to try and get around to, and who knows what else will make it’s way onto my TBR list as well?

Here are a few of the books I’d like to read throughout July…

Wizard and Glass (The Dark Tower #4) by Stephen King – This is the book that gives a glimpse into Roland’s past – his time with his old friends Cuthbert and Alain and his meeting with Susan Delgado. I remember enjoying this the first time I read it, so I’m looking forward to revisiting the story to see if I still enjoy it as much.

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers – Rosemary Harper doesn’t expect much when she joins the crew of the aging Wayfarer. While the patched-up ship has seen better days, it offers her a bed, a chance to explore the far-off corners of the galaxy, and most importantly, some distance from her past. An introspective young woman who learned early to keep to herself, she’s never met anyone remotely like the ship’s diverse crew, including Sissix, the exotic reptilian pilot, chatty engineers Kizzy and Jenks who keep the ship running, and Ashby, their noble captain.

Life aboard the Wayfarer is chaotic and crazy—exactly what Rosemary wants. It’s also about to get extremely dangerous when the crew is offered the job of a lifetime. Tunneling wormholes through space to a distant planet is definitely lucrative and will keep them comfortable for years. But risking her life wasn’t part of the plan. In the far reaches of deep space, the tiny Wayfarer crew will confront a host of unexpected mishaps and thrilling adventures that force them to depend on each other. To survive, Rosemary’s got to learn how to rely on this assortment of oddballs—an experience that teaches her about love and trust, and that having a family isn’t necessarily the worst thing in the universe.

The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal – On a cold spring night in 1952, a huge meteorite fell to earth and obliterated much of the east coast of the United States, including Washington D.C. The ensuing climate cataclysm will soon render the earth inhospitable for humanity, as the last such meteorite did for the dinosaurs. This looming threat calls for a radically accelerated effort to colonize space, and requires a much larger share of humanity to take part in the process.

Elma York’s experience as a WASP pilot and mathematician earns her a place in the International Aerospace Coalition’s attempts to put man on the moon, as a calculator. But with so many skilled and experienced women pilots and scientists involved with the program, it doesn’t take long before Elma begins to wonder why they can’t go into space, too.

Elma’s drive to become the first Lady Astronaut is so strong that even the most dearly held conventions of society may not stand a chance against her.

The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow – In 1893, there’s no such thing as witches. There used to be, in the wild, dark days before the burnings began, but now witching is nothing but tidy charms and nursery rhymes. If the modern woman wants any measure of power, she must find it at the ballot box.

But when the Eastwood sisters–James Juniper, Agnes Amaranth, and Beatrice Belladonna–join the suffragists of New Salem, they begin to pursue the forgotten words and ways that might turn the women’s movement into the witch’s movement. Stalked by shadows and sickness, hunted by forces who will not suffer a witch to vote-and perhaps not even to live-the sisters will need to delve into the oldest magics, draw new alliances, and heal the bond between them if they want to survive.

There’s no such thing as witches. But there will be.


What are you hoping to read this month? Have you read of my picks, and if so what did you think?
See you again next month for another Booking Ahead.

The Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag: 2021 Edition

It’s Book Tag time.

It’s that time of year; I’ve spotted this tag around quite often recently so yes, the Mid-Year period is here again.
I’ve enjoyed many of my recent reads, so here’s to remembering a few of them in the Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag.

1. Best book you’ve read so far in 2021:

I’ve read some great books so far this year so I don’t think I can pick just one for this. I must mention…

DevilandtheDarkWater TenThousandDoorsOfJanuary NOS4A2

Gunslinger DrawingoftheThree WasteLands

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton
The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow
NOS4A2 by Joe Hill
The Gunslinger, The Drawing of the Three, and The Waste Lands – the first three volumes of the Dark Tower series by Stephen King

2. Best sequel of 2021 so far:

DrawingoftheThree
The Drawing of the Three by Stephen King. It’s the second Dark Tower book and really starts to draw everything together after the Gunslinger, a much shorter novel that only really features Roland, the Man in Black and Jake.

3. New release you haven’t read yet, but want to:

The Shape of Darkness by Laura Purcell is one I definitely want to read but I’m thinking I might save it for my Autumn TBR list, if I can resist that long.

4. Most anticipated release of the second half of 2021:

Billy Summers by Stephen King

5. Biggest disappointment of 2021:

That I haven’t read a few more books so far, I’m still reading quite slowly and there are so many books I want to read.

6. Biggest surprise:

Naturalist Later ThisIsHowYouLosetheTimeWar

The Naturalist by Andrew Mayne was something a bit different for me and went off in surprising directions that made for exciting reading.

Later by Stephen King was another good one.

This Is How You Lose The Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone – I enjoyed this so much that I want to read more books like it.

7. Favourite new author (debut or new to you):

TenThousandDoorsOfJanuary

New-to-me – Alix E. Harrow with The Ten Thousand Doors of January. I can’t believe I waited so long to read it.

8. Newest fictional crush:

Still drawing a blank on this one…

9. Newest favourite character:

DevilandtheDarkWater

This is a tie between Arent Hayes and Sara Wessell in The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton. I liked them both separately, and having them team up to deal with what is going on aboard the Saardam made for some great reading.

10. Book that made you cry:

WasteLands

There was one moment during The Waste Lands by Stephen King that made me just a tiny bit emotional. It was a reunion, and one I’d been looking forward to. I’ll say no more.

11. Book that made you happy:

GodsofJadeandShadow

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia.

12. Favourite book to movie adaptation of 2021 you’ve seen:

It’s not a movie but I’ve recently watched the TV series of Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King. It’s a while since I read the Bill Hodges trilogy and I enjoyed the tv versions of the characters.

13. Favourite Post/review you’ve written this year:

Gunslinger DrawingoftheThree WasteLands

I’m enjoying writing about my Dark Tower reread. It was only when I started considering a series reread that I discovered I hadn’t already written about these books, possibly because I read them in my pre-blogging days.

Top Ten Tuesday has also given opportunities for some fun-to-write posts too. A few I’ve enjoyed included…

New-to-Me Authors of 2020

The Colours of Mardi Gras (covers edition)

Books That Made Me Want to Read More Like Them

14. Most beautiful book you bought or received this year:

TenThousandDoorsOfJanuary

The Ten Thousand Doors of January has a lovely cover and the story was pretty magical too.

15. Books you need to read by the end of this year:

There are many, many books I could mention here but I’ll just mention a few or I’d have a whole post filled with my tbr list…

More of the Dark Tower series by Stephen King
Piranesi by Susanna Clarke
The One and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow
A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik

So concludes my 2021 edition of The Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag.


As always, if you’ve not already done this and you fancy reminiscing over the amazing books you’ve read so far this year, feel free to consider yourself tagged.
See you next time for another Book Tag!

Top Ten Tuesday: Books that Made Me Want to Read More Books Like Them

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Books I Loved that Made Me Want to Read More Books Like Them


I always like it when I find a book that I enjoy so much it leaves me wanting to find something similar whether that’s another book by the same author, or a tale with a similar theme or a particular setting or similar characters.  

This week I’ve chosen a few titles that I experienced this with, some of them standalone, some either a trilogy or a series (because even then you can never have too many books, right?!).  

As always I’ve linked to any reviews just in case any of these covers or titles catches your attention.

ShadesofMilkandHoney

Shades of Milk and Honey (Glamourist Histories #1) by Mary Robinette Kowal

SilentCompanions

The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell

SevenDeathsofEvelynHardcastle

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

Gunslinger DrawingoftheThree WasteLands

The Dark Tower series by Stephen King

BearandtheNightingale girlinthetower WinteroftheWitch

The Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden

The Wayward Pines trilogy by Blake Crouch

promiseofblood CrimsonCampaign AutumnRepublic

The Powder Mage trilogy by Brian McClellan

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James

DevilandtheDarkWater

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Booking Ahead: June 2021

Booking Ahead is an opportunity to glance through my never-ending TBR list/pile and select a few potential reads for the coming month. If I’m not reading books I love talking about books I’d like to read, so this post is a perfect excuse to do just that.

It’s that time again, a glance at my TBR list to select a few potential reads for the month of June. I’ve been reading very slowly of late so I won’t choose too many titles, especially since I must mention…

Wizard and Glass by Stephen King. This is the fourth book in the Dark Tower series, and I do want to continue my reread this month so I imagine this will take up a fair amount of my reading time. It’s been a long time since I read these books but from memory I think this was one that I really enjoyed, where we learn more of Roland’s past and about his friends and some of their adventures. Can’t wait to get back to it.

A few other titles I’d like to read this month may include…

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton – I’ve wanted to read this for a while now.  I enjoyed The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle so much I can’t wait to see what’s in store of this tale of murder, mystery and possible supernatural happenings on board a ship bound for Amsterdam.

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – My current and ongoing read which I should definitely finish this month. It’s so good, and I can’t wait to see how it’s going to end, although I don’t really want to get to the end.

If I manage to read any/all of these choices I might return to the Joe Pickett series by C. J. Box. I read the first book recently and find myself wanting to discover what happens to Joe and his family next.


What are you hoping to read this month? Have you read of my picks, and if so what did you think?
See you again next month for another Booking Ahead.

Booking Ahead: May 2021

Booking Ahead is an opportunity to glance through my never-ending TBR list/pile and select a few potential reads for the coming month. If I’m not reading books I love talking about books I’d like to read, so this post is a perfect excuse to do just that.

Welcome to the TBR pile once again! I’ve picked out a few potential reads for May.

I think my Dark Tower reread may continue this month with the 4th book the series, Wizard and Glass.

There’s another book that I’d like to read this month as well which is another by Stephen King…

Later by Stephen King – The son of a struggling single mother, Jamie Conklin just wants an ordinary childhood. But Jamie is no ordinary child. Born with an unnatural ability his mom urges him to keep secret, Jamie can see what no one else can see and learn what no one else can learn. But the cost of using this ability is higher than Jamie can imagine – as he discovers when an NYPD detective draws him into the pursuit of a killer who has threatened to strike from beyond the grave.

Beyond that I’m not sure yet what else I’ll be reading.


What are you hoping to read this month? Have you read of my picks, and if so what did you think?
See you again next month for another Booking Ahead.

Booking Ahead: April 2021

Booking Ahead is an opportunity to glance through my never-ending TBR list/pile and select a few potential reads for the coming month. If I’m not reading books I love talking about books I’d like to read, so this post is a perfect excuse to do just that.

The monthly wander through the endless pile/list of books is upon us again as I select a few potential reads for April. Bring on the books…

The Waste Lands (The Dark Tower #3) by Stephen King – I have a feeling that my Dark Tower reread will be continuing this month as I can’t seem to put those books down at the moment.
I’ve seen various suggestions for other King books connected to the Tower, and as if several thousand pages of Tower wasn’t enough, I’m actually considering adding a few of the connected novels in too.

That said, there is at least one other book I would like to mention here too…

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – I’m reading this at the moment and it’s very good. I picked it after enjoying Mexican Gothic so much.

So, there are a couple of the books that may feature in my reading this month. There’s also the chance that something completely unexpected will catch my eye…


What are you hoping to read this month? Have you read of my picks, and if so what did you think?
See you again next month for another Booking Ahead.

Booking Ahead: March 2021

Booking Ahead is an opportunity to glance through my never-ending TBR list/pile and select a few potential reads for the coming month. If I’m not reading books I love talking about books I’d like to read, so this post is a perfect excuse to do just that.

Welcome to another wander through my TBR pile, where you find me wondering what I should read next. I’m not too sure what I’m in the mood for at the moment, but there are at least a couple of books I’m definitely hoping to read over the coming month…

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – Last year I had the pleasure of reading my first novel by this author, Mexican Gothic. I enjoyed it so much that I knew I would have to pick up at least one of her backlist titles and Gods of Jade and Shadow caught my eye with it’s lovely cover. I’ve already started reading and so far I think I’m going to enjoy it just as much as Mexican Gothic. It’s very different to that story, following Casiopea, a young woman who accidentally frees the Lord of Xibalba and ends up having to go adventuring with him as their fates become entwined. Can’t wait to read more of this.

The Drawing of the Three (The Dark Tower #2) by Stephen King – I’ve started my Dark Tower reread and don’t want to wait too long between volumes, so I might pick up book 2 this month. I think I might enjoy another Western/Weird West tale. From what I remember this one features more modern time periods too as Roland draws his ka-tet together for the first time.
From memory The Drawing of the Three is a longer read than The Gunslinger, so I’m not sure I’ll manage to fit in anything else over the month but you never know.


What are you hoping to read this month? Have you read of my picks, and if so what did you think?
See you again next month for another Booking Ahead.

Top Ten Tuesday: The Colours of Mardi Gras

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Purple, Yellow, and Green Book Covers (Mardi Gras!)


Top Ten Tuesday this week is an opportunity to gaze at some lovely colours themed around the colours purple, yellow, and green. I always enjoy a cover edition so as usual I may have gone a little (or a lot) beyond ten books. I’ve linked each of the covers to their reviews in case anything catches your attention. On to the books…

 

      


What did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Booking Ahead: February 2021

Booking Ahead is an opportunity to glance through my never-ending TBR list/pile and select a few potential reads for the coming month. If I’m not reading books I love talking about books I’d like to read, so this post is a perfect excuse to do just that.

Welcome to the first Booking Ahead of 2021.  February finds me in an unusual reading situation.
I feel in the mood for a bit of… rereading.
This is something I rarely if ever indulge in. There are so many new books all vying for attention, and that’s still the case, but for some reason I am really tempted by a couple of books I’ve read before.
They’re both Stephen King titles, and the first is The Shining. The second is The Gunslinger, which is the first book of the Dark Tower series. I’ve wanted to reread that whole series for quite a while.
I recently discovered I must have read both of these books during my pre-blogging days as I don’t seem to have written about them before, so if I do read either or both of them they’ll probably make an appearance on the blog.

That said, there are a couple of other books that I bought recently and I’m still amazed that I haven’t instantly picked up at least one of them yet, so they’re both worth a mention in my potential reads for the month too…

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke

There are also the new titles that are catching my eye right now, and a couple that I’m interested in are…

The Shape of Darkness by Laura Purcell – As the age of the photograph dawns in Victorian Bath, silhouette artist Agnes is struggling to keep her business afloat. Still recovering from a serious illness herself, making enough money to support her elderly mother and her orphaned nephew Cedric has never been easy, but then one of her clients is murdered shortly after sitting for Agnes, and then another, and another… Why is the killer seemingly targeting her business?

Desperately seeking an answer, Agnes approaches Pearl, a child spirit medium lodging in Bath with her older half-sister and her ailing father, hoping that if Pearl can make contact with those who died, they might reveal who killed them.

But Agnes and Pearl quickly discover that instead they may have opened the door to something that they can never put back…

The Burning Girls by C. J. Tudor – A new-to-me author from last year, I enjoyed The Other People and I remember being intrigued by the teaser at the back of that book for this latest offering. Here’s a short description… An unconventional vicar moves to a remote corner of the English countryside, only to discover a community haunted by death and disappearances both past and present–and intent on keeping its dark secrets–in this explosive, unsettling thriller from acclaimed author C. J. Tudor.


What are you hoping to read this month? Have you read of my picks, and if so what did you think?
See you again next month for another Booking Ahead.

Top Ten Tuesday: The New-to-Me Authors of 2020

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  New-to-Me Authors I Read in 2020


This week Top Ten Tuesday is all about the new-to-me authors of 2020. Alongside the latest read from a favourite author I do enjoy discovering new writers. This is a selection of my discoveries from 2020, along with a snippet of my review for each book. As always, titles are linked to full reviews in case anything catches your eye…

Stoker’s Wilde by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi – “…blends horror, humour and wit, with two wonderfully engaging protagonists and reluctant allies and a wide supporting cast of heroes and villains which make this a great read.”

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – “The story is a really involved slow burn for the first two thirds, the tension gradually ratcheting up until the awful truth is revealed and from there the descent into horror is rapid and vivid. It’s almost as stomach churning as the moment a rollercoaster reaches the peak and drops suddenly. You know something is about to happen because there are so many things wrong at High Place, so many dark secrets, and it’s tense reading discovering whether Noemí will be able to save her cousin, and even by the end, herself.”

The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James – “The story combines an old murder mystery with some wonderfully creepy scenes at the motel. The dead of night, the isolation, the threat from something apparently real but not real, I definitely had a moment or two when I was glad I’m come across certain scenes during daylight hours, or I may have had to put the story aside for a while.”

Wayward Pines trilogy by Blake Crouch – “One sign of a good book is that you can’t wait to get back to reading, and that definitely happened for me with Pines. I always wanted to read just one more chapter, and found myself trying to find more reading time in my day because with each surprise and revelation things just became more strange and inexplicable.”

Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry – “Through hailstorms, dust clouds, a plague of grasshoppers, encounters with grizzly bears, searing heat and endless wilderness, desolate places and many extremes, I journeyed with these characters and shared their joys and despairs.”

The Invisible Library (The Invisible Library #1) by Genevieve Cogman – “The Invisible Library is a good beginning to a series that I’m looking forward to discovering. Anything themed around books and libraries and alternate fantasy worlds is going to get my reading attention, and as Irene was dispatched with new orders at the end of this novel, I was almost as pleased as she was that there is more to look forward to in this world of magic and adventure and books.”

A Cosmology of Monsters by Shaun Hamill – “A Cosmology of Monsters is an intriguing blend of family life mingled with horrors both everyday and otherworldly, and I would give it a try if you’re looking for something a little different, a little strange, a little scary and a little mysterious.”

Opium and Absinthe by Lydia Kang – “The storyline kept me guessing until the end as to who or what was responsible for Lucy’s murder. I also liked the inclusion of quotes from Dracula at the beginning of each chapter, it’s made me want to read that book again as well. Tillie is a likable character who grew in confidence as the tale progressed and her discovering the truth made for an eventful tale.”

The Other People by C. J. Tudor – “The opening hints at something strange straight away, an unknown girl, alone, sleeping, surrounded by medical equipment. There’s something eerie about it. Who is she and what has happened to her? I enjoyed the way this narrative ran throughout, suggesting something slightly out of the ordinary alongside the thriller unfolding.”

The Sleep Tight Motel by Lisa Unger – “Mysterious, eerie, great atmosphere, and a need to know exactly what is going on in the room next door, from which Eve hears screams and dragging sounds on more than one occasion despite there being no other guests staying at the motel kept me glued to this for the duration.”


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.