Here we are at the end of 2016, and to say I got a little off track would be a monumental understatement. In fact, I haven’t posted anything since August. I hear a lot of people saying that 2016 has been a train wreck of a year. Honestly, I am no exception. I experienced huge upheaval in my life in the form of a divorce that I did not see coming. So, along with moving to a new home and starting a new job, I threw a rather large pity party for myself.
Thankfully, I have emerged from the fog, and I am ready to move forward…..with life and with my blog. But, before the blog starts a second year, I want to recap the rest of the books I read this year. NOTHING could keep me from reading. Even though I haven’t been writing, I have been reading. Books always make things better, and 2016 required lots and lots of books.
Here are the rest of the books I read this year:
The Forgiveness Project (by Marina Cantacuzino): This nonfiction book looks at the experiences of the individuals on both sides of violent crimes and how they experienced forgiveness. It is incredibly powerful and thought provoking.
Angel of Storms (by Trudi Canavan): This is the second book in the fantasy series Millennium’s Rule. The stories of Rielle and Tyen converge in this book. I’ve listened to both of these books on Audible, and the narration is very good. I’m looking forward to the third book in the series, which is tentatively due in 2017.
The Bone Clocks (by David Mitchell): This is my first David Mitchell book, and I was obsessed with it. I have it in print and on Audible, and I listened to it this time around. The narration is excellent. It is slightly weird, but like Delia Deetz said, “I myself am strange and unusual.” I loved this book.
The 13th Continuum and Return of the Continuums (by Jennifer Brody): I received an ARC of the second book in this series from Turner Books. I bought the first one, and quickly devoured them both. This is a good YA, post-apocalyptic story. I have a hard time resisting this genre, and I am looking forward to the third book.
The Iron Daughter (by Julie Kagawa): I liked (but not loved) the first book in this series, however, this one didn’t do it for me. I felt like a lot of the dialogue was silly, and I got bored with it. I listened to it on Audible, and the narration (especially of some of the males), made the dialogue worse for me. I won’t be continuing with the series.
The Plantagenets and The Wars of the Roses (by Dan Jones): These are both deep dives into English history, so they aren’t for everyone, but they are for me. I enjoyed both books, and the narration (I listened on Audible) was good for both.
Isabella (by Kirstin Downey): Another deep dive into history. Isabella was a complex and remarkable woman. I highly recommend this book. I listened on Audible, and I enjoyed the narration, too.
The Big Rewind (by Libby Cudmore): A really cute contemporary mystery that took me on a trip down memory lane remembering the “mix tapes” of my youth.
Murder of a Lady (by Anthony Wynne): A classic British closed-door mystery, that has recently been reissued. I enjoyed this book set in the Scottish highlands.
Searching for Happiness (by Martin Thielen): A good book about the things that really make people happy.
Invasion of the Tearling (by Erika Johansen): Book 2 in the Queen of the Tearling series. This book is darker than the first book, but I liked it better. However, I think the reason I liked it better had more to do with the narration. They used a different narrator for this book, and I liked her MUCH better than the first.
Hard Magic, Spellbound, and Warbound (by Larry Correia): These 3 are a mix of steampunk, fantasy, alternate history, and noir. I listened on Audible because they are narrated by Bronson Pinchot, and he is one of my favorite narrators. They are quite violent, but I enjoyed all three. The dialogue is excellent.
Reign of Shadows (by Sophie Jordan): This fantasy book didn’t really get going for me until the last quarter. Then it picked up. It ended with a cliffhanger, so I’ll be back for book 2.
The Vatican Princess (by C.W. Gortner): Historical fiction about Lucrezia Borgia. I’ve been on a Borgia and Medici kick lately. I binge watched the Showtime Original The Borgias (excellent), the Netflix Original The Borgias (disturbing), and the Netflix Original The Medici (excellent). I enjoyed this perspective on Lucrezia’s life.
Arcadia (by Iain Pears): I loved this book!!! It’s fantasy and dystopian, but humorous and weird and delightful.
Ghostland (by Colin Dickey): An incredible nonfiction book about American history through the lens of its haunted places. I have it in print and on Audible. I listened to it with my sons and they loved it too. Highly recommended.
Four Nights with the Duke (by Eloisa James): I wanted to like this book because I am a fan of Regency romances. But, alas, I did not. The “hero” is an ass and is way too impressed with his anatomy. UGH.
A Rogue by Any Other Name (by Sarah MacLean): THIS is the Regency romance I loved. MacLean’s dialogue is witty and snappy. Loved the hero and the heroine.
You Can’t Touch My Hair (by Phoebe Robinson): Excellent memoir about race, feminism, and pop culture. I listed on Audible and Robinson does the narration, which is perfect. Highly recommend.
Masks and Shadows (by Stephanie Burgis): I loved this book set in Hungary under the Habsburgs. It is atmospheric and unusual.