Completed this Week:
The Curse of Chalion was an impulse buy when it was a Kindle Daily Deal one day...a few months ago? I had started it...gotten maybe a chapter in and was dreadfully bored and put off. When I had nothing else to read at work, I started plugging away at it again...and was amazed at how enjoyable it was. This books has interesting, dimensional characters, good (if stereotypical fantasy/medieval European-esque) worldbuilding, and a plot that kept me guessing. Overall, this book is about maneuvering in politics, spiritual power, and loyalty. I would recommend it, and I'm probably going to read more by Bujold.
The Casual Vacancy by J. K. Rowling
I'm not a huge Harry Potter fan. When a friend loaned me A Casual Vacancy I had serious doubts. I found the book rather forcibly "dark/grisly." With all that said. I enjoyed Rowling's newest novel immensely. Well. Maybe not "enjoyed" because it was terribly depressing; but it was an excellent read and went by very quickly for being just shy of 500 pages! This little examination of a small town after the death of a local Council member is fascinating. It hosts a wide cast of characters ranging in ages, interests, and personalities. The Casual Vacancy isn't about small town politics so much as it's about the everyday wars people wage. Children against adult, rich against poor, etc. I would recommend it.
Scheherazade's Facade edited by Michael M. Jones
I ordered this anthology of short stories of "gender bending, cross-dressing, and transformation" because it contains a new Tanith Lee story. But of course I found them all rather enjoyable. I found it odd that the over whelming theme was of men/boys "transforming" into women. I had expected a wide range of...well...gender-bending antics! I did enjoy the collection; but the stand-out stories were: "The Secret Name of the Prince" by Alma Alexander, "Keeping the World on Course" by Tanith Lee, "Treasure and Maidens" by Sarah Rees Brennan, and "Lady Marmalade's Special Place in Hell" by David Sklar.
Tenterhooks by Ada Leverson
Tenterhooks follows Love's Shadow where we are introduced to Edith and Bruce Ottley; she the perfect wife, and he a completely absurd hypochondriac (and more). This second installment follows a brief affection between Edith and a certain new friend introduced to her and her husband's circle. He is madly in love with Edith, and she is clearly devoted to her husband and two children...come what may. I didn't read this for plot, I read this for the delightful insight into "well off" London in the early 1900s, for the witty banter, and the absurdities of Bruce...you really must read them to understand how ridiculous it is.
this novel will have it's own review since I received it through the LibraryThing Early Reviewer program. Look for it!