Tiny reviews for August reads

Quite a few of these are for books coming out this month (September), and since I want to highlight those I’ve put them in a green font. New releases! Exciting, eh?

I am like THISCLOSE to being caught up on reviews. Huzzah!

151. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell – Susanna Clarke *
Bloomsbury USA (August 11, 2005), 3 volume Paperback set, 1006pp / Bought / reread Aug 1-4, 2012
Read this if you like superlong fantasies with clever footnotes that is also set during the Napoleonic Wars and if you don’t mind that all the female characters (the three that’re there, anyway) get terribly, terrible shafted. I took copious notes when I read this but I don’t actually feel like going through them and writing an essay of a review. However! I will say that I appreciated it a lot more this time around than the first time I read it, although I still really hated both title characters to the point that I think I gave myself a headache in the last third of the book.

152. In Memory Yet Green – Isaac Asimov
Avon Books (April 1980), Paperback, 732pp / Bought / read August 4-6, 2012
Read this if you like Isaac Asimov’s work and want to know more about the dude behind the typewriter. Turns out? He’s a big-headed perv who somehow makes his faults almost charming. Also, everyone in the sci-fi world in the first half of the 20th century were apparently all swingers.

153. Undead – Kirsty McKay
The Chicken House (September 1, 2012) (US, pub’d earlier in the UK), ARC, 263pp / ALA 2012 / read August 8, 2012
Read this if you like YA action sci-fi/horror books that are sure to turn into movies, read like they already ARE movies, and that follow your basic YA sci-fi/horror action movie plotline. The ending is abrupt and completely wackadoodle, but there’s a good mix of character “types” and also there are zombies. I love zombies. (Sidenote: it takes place in England, but all the kids sound REALLY American to me. Was it written like that, or did they change things when they pub’d it here? Hm.)

155. Mira’s Diary: Lost in Paris – Marissa Moss
Sourcebooks Jabberwocky (September 4, 2012), ARC, 224pp / ALA 2012 / read August 9, 2012
Read this if you like Marissa Moss’ NON-Amelia books, if you like time-travel stories and if you don’t mind that the protagonist cares more about whether a potential love interest is dating something than about why she’s traveling through time.

156. Privateer’s Apprentice – Susan Verrico
Peachtree Publishers (September 1, 2012), ARC, 224pp / ALA 2012 / read August 10, 2012
Read this if you like almost-realistic MG historical fiction, books with pirates(/privateers) and if you don’t mind that the title is completely incorrect for what actually happens in the book. It reminded me a lot of The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, only with less violence/blood/insane captains who hate everyone.

157. The Paladin Prophecy – Mark Frost
Random House Books for Young Readers (September 25, 2012), ARC, 547pp / ALA 2012 / read August 12, 2012
Read this if you like sci-fi/fantasy crossovers that’re impossible to summarize without a) spoilers and b) completely turning off anyone from wanting to read it. Think Michael Grant’s Gone series, only with a smaller (and less white) cast, and where the romance isn’t as good (or convincing) but the writing is better overall, and also there’s a boarding school that doesn’t entirely suck for once. Huzzah!

159. The Happy Medium – Janice Tarver & Margaret Magnus [DNF]
Girlebooks.com (April 6, 2010), ebook, 45pp read / freebie / read August 17, 2012
Read this if you have more tolerance than I do for bad writing and boring stories about ghosts and mediums and stuff.

5 Comments

  1. What? You hated Jonathan Strange as well? But I liked Jonathan Strange! He thought of such interesting things to do! I disliked how he treated Arabella but omg he thought of such interesting things to do. I have rarely encountered a book where the characters thought of more interesting things to do than the things thought of by the JS&MN characters.

    • Anastasia

      I think I disliked him because I thought he was an inferior Chrestomanci? Which is unfair to Susanna Clarke/JS the character, but that’s what happened. Also, I couldn’t stop obsessing over what was happening to JS’s wife/that other lady/Stephen the servant and how NO ONE could see what was happening (and Norrell knew but did nothing, the creep) and there were no genre-savvy people running around rescuing people in distress, and it all rolled up into this big ball of hate for basically everyone in the book, even the more tolerable characters.

      ON THE OTHER HAND, you’ve just reminded me (again) how good the bits were when it was JS in France or wherever fighting Napoleon and whatnot with his interesting magic. So!

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