Saturday, January 5, 2013

Lots of Books to Sass About

Moonlight Call: A Tale of Southern Sass Update:  We're still in the editing stage.  To be honest, it's more like rework-the-first-half-of-the-book stage.  My health has dramatically worsened the past four months, which means little or no time at the laptop.  M has been working 20 hour days making her business successful because she's gotta do a little something called paying the bills on time.  But we are still writing and talking about stories and planning new stories.  Delie and Chloe will sally forth eventually, even though it's taking much longer than we naively believed when we began this escapade.

Lots of Books to Sass About for the New Year

So we realize it's been a long dry blogging spell.  I wasn't kidding when I mentioned my deteriorating health, and M has very little interest in blogging.  In fact, she hates blogs.  She doesn't even like the word "blogosphere" - it creeps her out.  (An illustrative anecdote about M and her word issues - when I mentioned NANOWRIMO, she told me that sounded like a perfect name for a rabid baby dinosaur.) 

So if I'm down and not writing, M is not going to compose a post - she's busy as hell and besides, this is my job.  When we divvied up the tasks in our writing venture, blogging fell directly under my column.  So don't hate for me for not posting. 

It's a new year, and bloggers and writers all over the world are making sweeping resolutions about their word count.

1.  I'm going to write a million new words this year.
2.  I'm going to blog every day (or week or month.)
3.  I'm going to create and follow my production schedule.
4.  I'm going to create a platform.  Social media here I come!

M and I aren't into resolutions so I won't bore you with any of that nonsense.  Let's get down to today's business, shall we?

Here are some of our favorite books we read this year and some old stand-bys as well. 

(Maybe we'll morph into the newest, hottest book review and recomendation blog!  I'm kidding - don't send me stuff to read, at least not until I've discussed it with M. Writers flock to new review sites like vultures to carrion.  We just can't help ourselves, I'm afraid.)

M's Picks
  • A Discovery of Witches by Deborah E. Harkness: M and I both happened to read this one because we both enjoy a well-written paranormal witchy vampire tale.  However, M finished it; I did not.  It's in my re-read pile.  And M said she liked most of it, which is high praise from my finicky friend.
  • Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy:  This was a re-read for M.  In her words, "That's always good."
  • Easy by Tamara Weber: M says this was ok.
  • Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire: M says this wasn't horrible.  (Anybody seeing a pattern here yet?)
  • Various books by Tana French: M says these are easy mystery suspense types reads.
And that was all I was able to pry out of M through multiple texts interrupting her hectic day. 

Now my picks are a bit more problematic.  As a chronic pain sufferer and a chronically ill person (I have more diseases than appendages,) I read a lot.  On bad days I spend up to 20 hours reading on my various Kindles, so I go through a shit ton of books in almost every genre other than traditional romance.

L's Picks
  • Wool by Hugh Howey (Be still my heart!): I'm not gonna say a whole lot about this sci-fi tale here because Hugh deserves an entire blog post on his own.  My favorites are Wool 1 and 5, but I've read the entire saga multiple times.  I'm anxiously waiting the publication of Third Shift.  I will say Hugh is a self-publishing phenom and one of my personal sources of inspiration.
  • Anything by Deborah Geary:  I love Deborah Geary and her witch stories!  Thank goodness I had an Amazon gift card when I discovered her writing because I then went and bought every single one of her books.  They are light-hearted tales, but they're full of wisdom and warmth.
  • Nathan Lowell's Solar Clipper Trader Tales: Character driven science fiction. 
  • An Order of Coffee and Tears by Brian Spangler: Contemporary women's fiction.  Is that not the greatest title ever?!?
  • The End of Marking Time by CJ West: Mystery techno-thriller. 
  • Hetaera By Suzanne Tyrpak: Historical fiction, Ancient Greek.
  • A Wind Out of Indigo By Callan Primer: Fantasy.
  • The Muirwood Trilogy By Jeff Wheeler: Fantasy.
  • Spoil of War by Phoenix Sullivan: Historical fiction. This book has some controversy attached to it because of the way it depicts rape.  I didn't find it offensive; I thought it was true to the time period.
  • Dalya Moon's Life in Saltwater City books:  New Adult Romance (I would've thought these were contemporary women's fiction with romantic elements, but Dalya knows best.) These aren't a series, but they made me smile.  I predict Ms. Moon is going to be one of the self-publishers to hit the big time this year.
  • Girl in Hyacinth Blue by Susan Vreeland: Historical fiction, I think?  It traces the fictional trail of the ownership of a Vermeer painting.  I've read this book once a year since I first found it.  Now that my poor decrepit hands don't get along with paperbacks, I bought the Kindle version, too.
  • The Zombies of Hobbiton: A Martian Love Story by Edward W. Robertson: A great novella.  Science fiction and zombies - what's not to love?!?
I'm currently re-reading Michelle West's Chronicles of Elantra. 

I should stop now, yes?  I've violated all of the rules of blogging by writing too much! 

Seriously though, I pulled these from five shelves of favorites on just one of my Kindles.  I could go on and on and on...

What was your favorite book this past year?  Let us know if you pick up any we mentioned; we'd love to hear what you think. 


  1. I think the Wool series was my favorite of 2012.

    Thanks to a very dear friend, I was able to borrow all but the first in the series, which I bought.

    I would have gladly paid for the remainder of the series but with the economy being what it was and some health issues of my own which ended my career as a nurse forever in February of 2012, I was extremely grateful to accept the generous offer of the loans.

    I swear, once my finances recover, I'm buying the entire rest of the series for my very own. Both to have to reread and because Hugh deserves to be paid for his work.

    I was thrilled at the generosity of my kind and generous friend with a heart as big as the South itself and hope to someday find a way to repay her generosity in kind. :)

    1. Tangiegirl,

      You came by!!! (Tangie and I met in the Amazon fora and bonded over our frighteningly similar health and pain issues.)

      We love Hugh, and Wool does deserve a permanent abode on our Kindle Favorites shelf.

      (FYI - I just happen to be the friend who loaned her the books. I shout my love for Hugh far and wide.)

      Sister, you've already given my way more than I will ever be able to repay - friendship during isolation, a shoulder to lean on when the pain is bad, support for my fledgling writing career, just to name a few.

      Thanks for dropping in and chatting, my friend!

  2. Replies
    1. Hugh,

      Here's the text M sent me when she saw that you graced us with your presence - "Just saw Hugh posted on blog. Did you wet yourself giggling with excitement?" comment.

      Thanks for dropping by, oh-writer-I-want-to-be-when-I-grow-up! Hopefully M is gonna let me do my review of all things Hugh Howey soon. I think she's worried I'm gonna embarrass us or something, which, I'm afraid, is a valid concern.