Wednesday, December 12, 2012

November Mini-Reviews

For all my talk of how I wouldn't be able to read in November I sure read a lot. I only need two more books to have met my goal of 52 books this year. I think it's safe to say I'm going to make it.

The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson. I had to finish this series. Sanderson has a way of upping the stakes and understanding people like you wouldn't believe. The great thing about this series is that even though it's technically science fiction, it feels real. There are huge books, I wouldn't have been able to do it with NaNo if my mom hadn't lent me her audio version. If you have a chance to listen, rather than read this series, do it!


All I want by Jolene Perry, Kaylee Baldwin, and Rachael Anderson. Can I just start by saying Jolene is a rock star? Well she is. This anthology is the perfect read to get you're Christmas romance fix it. Three excellent stories, all well developed and well executed. It only took me a couple of hours to read each one. If you do pick it up, I recommend taking a day in between stories. I had a book hangover after I finished each story so it's best to keep them separated.

Side note: Anyone want to write something like this with me for next year? We can all publish together and spread the Christmas cheer :)

Reached by Ally Condie. My husband will attest that I literately said 'Squee!' when I got this in the mail. You know how sometimes you read a book, love it and then struggle through the next two in the series? Not the case with this book. A lot of people didn't like the second book (I understand why, though I disagree) but wow, how could the third book not blow them out of the water? You expect a dystopian to have some kind of revolution, but the authors way of bringing it to pass was so clever, and the ending. Just, wow, she's brilliant.

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. So you know how there are giveways sometimes for huge contests on facebook for books that are just amazing? Yeah, I won! I got all kinds of posters and bookmarks, not to mention a signed book and nail polish, it was awesome!
If I hadn't won, and I checked it out from the library instead, I would have gone out and bought it.
A few things she did masterfully: 1. Back story. That can be so hard, but she had a way of weaving it in that made it seem flawless. 2. Magic. Um, can we say original? Loved it! 3. Romance. It was all so subtle and perfect. She had me flipping the pages to gobble up more of the characters. I was hooked from line 1 you will be too.

North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley. Funny story about this book -I went to the NaNo write in at the downtown SLC library the first saturday in November. While there, they came to us and told us that they were going to throw away a bunch of books unless we wanted to come claim some for free. And by bunch, I mean an entire library of it's own just going to landfill if we authors didn't save them.
I went straight to the YA section and starting picking up every book I could find and fit in my box that I had to walk two blocks back to my car with. I honestly wish I could have spent more time and picked out more books.

Anyway, this blurb looked the best to me, and I am so glad I read it. Some moving and serious ideas presented in a way that can both be related to the life of a teen, and changed in the world around us. It pulled at my heart strings, it made me giddy, and it made me cry more than once (in a good way). I will forever view the world differently after reading this. I would compare it to John Green's The Fault in Our Stars. It does take the Lord's name in vain and there are references to teen sex, but it doesn't crowd the book like other YA's in the same genera would. I'm so glad I saved it from sitting in a pile of trash for the rest of eternity!

Bloggrls - nugrl90 (Sadie) by Cheryl Dellasega. I originally wrote this post on November 29th thinking I would be done reading for the month. I was wrong. This one was another salvage pile save that I picked up becasue of the blogging thing it's short so I was able to finish it in a few hours.For the first time this year, I've read a book that I wouldn't really recommend.

I will give the author props becasue it's hard to write a book in just blog posts and convey the emotions of every character, but she did well, considering the style. The subject matter was deep (parents getting divorced, and an abusive boyfriend) but the story just wasn't really my favorite. Someone out there may love this book, just not me.

What was your favorite read in November?


Ruth Josse said...

Shadow and Bone-loved it too! Can't wait to read Reached and All I Want!

Carolyn V said...

Great, great choices!!! I have a few on my list to read. Congrats on reaching 52! I'm jealous. ;)

Kelley Lynn said...

I would TOTALLY write a short story and include one with you for next Christmas!!! Ah! Count me in :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Not sure of a favorite, but EJ Wesley's was good and Talli Roland's was cute. (Obviously I can't even remember the names of the books either!)

Carol Kilgore said...

Shadows and Bone sounds good. My favorite November read was Sunny Days for Sam by Jennifer Shirk.

prerna pickett said...

i really enjoyed Shadow and Bone and can't to read Reached.

Anonymous said...

What a great listing of books-- thanks for calling attention to them.

Robin said...

Brandon Sanderson is the master. I was surprised how much reading I was able to do with NaNo- my favorite Nov. reads-What I Saw and How I Lied and The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau Banks

Cynthia said...

I've heard of North of Beautiful, and one of the other books sounds familiar too. Thanks for sharing. It's incredible you could go through so many books in a year!

Hall said...

Uh...Oh...I think my Christmas book wish list just got longer!

Kaylee Baldwin said...

I'm glad you liked All I Want :) It was so much fun to write with Jo and Rachael. I definitely recommend doing something like this.

Tara Tyler said...

thanks! just in time for xmas! been curious about shadow & bone, now i am anxious to read!