Happy May Day, everyone! Before I drag myself into two days of house-cleaning (days off are so full of glamour at Chez Rainbow), let’s look back over what I read and reviewed in April!
League of Dragons by Naomi Novik – we finally made it to the finish line of the Temeraire group read, and while I suffered from too much fatigue (and an unwillingness to repeat my criticisms yet again) to properly review the final book, I can refer you to imyril’s infinitely more gracious final thoughts.
A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab – April saw us reach the end of our most epic flail-y group read of the Shades of Magic trilogy. I cried fangirl tears, and I’m not sorry.
Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch – We finished reading this book just last night, so while my final review is pending, I can say at this point that I am sufficiently impressed! I expect we’ll be organising a schedule for the second book, Moon Over Soho, very soon.
A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan – We are one more reading session away from finishing this one, and my review of Part 3 will also be going up soon, but despite not being quite done yet I am happy to say that this book is delighting me! I definitely foresee us continuing with Lady Trent’s memoirs.
What I’ve Been Reading
So with all the Muskedragon activity in the last month, I didn’t get to write any individual book reviews – but that certainly doesn’t mean I didn’t read anything solo! I somehow got through four whole novels on the side – two eARCs, and two from my TBR!
The Lost Sun (Gods of New Asgard #1) by Tessa Gratton
I received signed copies of Tessa’s New Asgard books as a prize for my #TremonTEAM efforts, back when Season 2 of Tremontaine came to an end, and the first book was sufficiently oddball-fantastic enough to snare my interest. It reads like a road trip story mashed up with Norse mythology and sweet teen romance, and while the former two generally turn my head more easily than the latter, I found myself quite thoroughly enjoying it all. I am definitely keen for more!
The Art of Three by Erin McRae & Racheline Maltese
This one was a semi-rare but very welcome about-face in my usual reading habits, being a contemporary – bisexual, polyamorous and thoroughly delightful – romance novel. Sometimes you just need something safely Happily Ever After, and this book fits the bill in heartwarming style. Also, everyone and everything about it is gorgeous and I want to go to Spain now.
Anne Boleyn: A King’s Obsession* (Six Tudor Queens #2) by Alison Weir
Another detour off the beaten track for my reading, with this historical-fiction account of the life of Anne Boleyn. It’s written from Anne’s POV, and it seems clear that it’s perhaps building upon the story of Katherine of Aragon, Henry VIII’s first wife and the subject of the first book in this series. As she did in life, Katherine features heavily in much of Anne’s story where Henry is concerned, but having not yet read the first book I suspect that reading the series out of order might not be advisable. I think I might have a richer understanding, or at least a more thought-provoking view, of Anne Boleyn had I read Katherine’s account first, assuming as one might that Anne likewise features heavily in that. What did Katherine actually think of her husband’s mistress, and her successor as queen? To be fair, some license is clearly taken with the narrative here, given that it’s historical fiction and not straight-up history – but it did compel me to go out and find more books about Anne that might not romanticise her quite so much…
All Good Things* (The Split Worlds #5) by Emma Newman
I’ve waited SO LONG to finally read this book, and this farewell felt truly bittersweet. The Split Worlds series is responsible for my rock-solid love of Emma’s writing, and this series finale didn’t disappoint me. There was so much yelling at some characters, cheering on of others, shocked gasping at some I wasn’t expecting to have to gasp at… There was also the occasional sense of some plot elements being hurried along to make room for others, and while I lament that somewhat (those parts were really interesting!), I don’t regret getting to spend more time with Cathy and Will (despite the yelling, yes it was mostly all aimed at Will) and seeing how their stories eventually concluded. All in all, I am still in fierce love with this series for all of the reasons I first fell for it.
* These books were acquired in eARC format, via NetGalley.
Ladycastle (#2 of 4) by Delilah S. Dawson (writer), Ashley A. Woods & Rebecca Farrow (illustrators)
And then there’s this concentrated dose of feminist awesomesauce.
The winning combination of fierce ladies, quick wit, underlying heart and copious amounts of patriarchy smashing that snared me in Part 1 continues to sweep me along for the ride in Part 2 of this comic, and if it isn’t getting ALL THE ATTENTION then it bloody well should be.
… Well? Are you reading it yet?
Phew! That’s it for my reading recap for this month, though there are some delightful jewels on the reading agenda presently that will, fingers crossed, get their turn in the month ahead. So look out for those, and I’ll see you next time!