April Summary…and Beyond!

Spring always feels so busy.  With PAX East at the end of March followed be Easter followed by being sick I’ve spend most of the last 4 to 6 weeks trying to get back into my normal routine.  It doesn’t help that the siren call of sunny days wars against the harsh glow and lulling hum of televisions and computers.  If I weren’t prone to particularly virulent allergies during the spring (though there is something year round that is always bothering me) I might have disappeared all together.  I managed to get six reviews done despite the mountain of other crap clamoring for my attention:

The Black Hand by Will Thomas

This was the last book in my hard-boiled reading project.  It was pretty good stuff, a hard-boiled Victorian era novel set on the mean streets of London.  I enjoyed the project immensely so expect me to pepper in some hard-boiled/noir/mystery titles every once and a while.

The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett

I’m a bit behind the curve on this one.  Despite some troubling treatment of his female lead I couldn’t put Brett’s novel down.  I’ll hopefully get around to reading the Desert Spear either this month or the next.

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

Though not quite as engaging as The Warded Man above, Carrie Ryans’ teen zombie post-apocalyptic coming-of-age romance novel was some excellent work that should be enjoyable for adults as well as teens.  I do plan on reading the Dead Tossed Waves some time in the not-too-distant future.

The Spirit Lens by Carol Berg

A rennaisance type fantasy mystery featuring a former librarian as the protagonist, The Spirit Lens was almost (see below for why it just missed) my favorite novel this past month.  If you missed this one do yourself a favor and give it a try.  I can’t wait for the sequel!

Empire in Black and Gold by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Though not as great as I hoped it would by this was still a good read in an interesting and original fantasy world.  It took a bit of warming up but the characterization in the novel, particularly of the villains, was quite excellent.

Bitter Seeds by Ian Tregiliss

This was my favorite novel read this month and by-and-large one of my favorites of 2010.  The supernatural and super-science collide during the height of the Blitz.  The first book in a three book series, the Milkweed Triptych, from one of the writers in George Martin’s Wild Cards writers group.  Great stuff here.

As my recent review of The Dragonbone Chair indicates I’ve decided to add a couple of rereads to the schedule.  I don’t know if I’ll get to the rest of Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn (To Green Angel Tower’s size scares me) it was a fun time and while it is definitely old school it is still well worth a look.  I’m glad I read it before I read Shadow Prowler which has had the “traditional” label leveled at it like a threat of some kind; I’m not sure I agree but more on that when I review it.  I’m almost done with my reread of The Gunslinger.  Honestly that novel might be King’s best work, the prose is quality if occasionally quirky and the scope of the world it hints at is truly amazing (why has no come up with a pen and paper RPG for that series?  It seems well suited for it!).  I’m fairly certain I will go through a reread of that whole series, particularly with the news that Ron Howard has been attached to turn them into films, and may even give some of the companion volumes a whirl (of which there are a few).  I managed to lay my hands on two ARCs from the bookselling job: Mission of Honor by David Weber (hell yeah!) and The Passage by Justin Cronin.  I’m slowly working through the latter while I expect to devour the former soon.  I also have yet to lay my hands on Changes by Jim Butcher, but I will.  I’m behind on my audiobook reviews as I didn’t put up my thoughts on the latest Fate of the Jedi novel (Backlash) as well as The Name of the Wind audio.  I’m currently listening to Makers by Cory Doctorow and absolutely loving it and plan listening to either A Mighty Fortress by David Weber or The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson next; whichever comes back to the library first.

We’re entering into beach book season and things are starting to look good, if a bit overwhelming!  There is just a ton great things (movies, games, books, music) coming around that I’m really excited about.  On that note I’ll leave you with this bit of awesome!

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