Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Slaying the TBR Pile

Soon I will have the cover for the second Cy'ren book, Morningstar, and I'm extremely thrilled and hyper about that. It will be out later this year, as will the third book, Sunsinger. (Much thanks again to my awesome and brave beta readers.) I'm also working on more Bad Witch books and a new fantasy series, but when I'm not obsessing over them, I've been making progress on my quest to whittle down my hugenormous To Be Read pile. (Or TBR bookcase, rather. It's an entire bookcase. My Nook and Kindle are also similarly filled.)

What I've been reading lately...

Corine Solomon series by Ann Aguirre. Blue Diablo has been hanging out on my TBR shelf for awhile, because I was in a dry spell for wanting to read urban fantasy. I tore through her sci-fi Sirantha Jax series last year like Cookie Monster in a bakery (OM NOM NOM!), so I knew I'd love this series too. And I do. I was glued to Blue Diablo, and I'm looking forward to reading more.

Aguirre is awesome at creating heroines who are tough but damaged--rolicking badasses who have dark, tortured pasts. They always save the day, but there's always a price to be paid. Her books have teeth and grit, and I love that. This isn't a romance series, but there's a romantic storyline that's complex and angsty which should satisfy romance readers.

InCryptid series and the October Daye series by Seanan McGuire. I devoured the Newsflesh books by Seanan's alter-ego Mira Grant last year. (Devoured. That's a zombie joke. ZOM NOM NOM!) It was a pretty sure bet that I'd love her Seanan McGuire books too, and yes, I did. I was immediately in love with the InCryptid books because the combination of humor and the supernatural reminded me of The Middleman. BFF Diana and I LOVE The Middleman, and often lament that it didn't last more than one season. I can judge how awesome a book is by how quickly I demand that Diana read it. Discount Armageddon had me singing its praises to her within the first few pages. I already pre-ordered book three, Half-Off Ragnarok. Again, these aren't romance books per se, but there's a romantic storyline with a very swoon-worthy hero.

I'm currently reading the second October Daye book, and I kinda wanted to hug the first book. It reminded me of everything I love about urban fantasy. Evil fae! Gritty setting! Tough heroine! Shakespearean references! Mythology! All the things! ...I'll stop now. It doesn't have the fun, bubbly flavor of the InCryptid books, but instead it has a dark, earthy taste. Like Guinness.

Blood of the Pride series by Sheryl Nantus. Okay, kids. I'm gonna tell you a quick story about how Sheryl Nantus is awesome. I've had a few rough spots after my divorce, and one particularly difficult day in 2012 I tweeted something angsty and Sheryl saw it. She DM'd me and asked if a free book would cheer me up, and then sent me not one but two free e-books. Because she's fabulous. ;-) And yes, they did cheer me up.

I read the first book awhile ago, then my urban fantasy reading dry spell kicked in. Once I was back in the groove I remembered that I had books two and three waiting on my Nook, so I read Claws Bared and Family Pride in quick succession, and I just picked up Battle Scars. I really enjoy this series, which is somewhat weird for me because I usually can't get into shapeshifters. The Blood of the Pride books are cat shifters though, not your standard werewolves, and it's a refreshing change. The heroine, Rebecca Desjardin, is a private investigator, and the mystery-solving aspect of the books remind me of the things I loved about the early Anita Blake books. Lots of action and crime-fighting, and the hero is rather awesome as well.

So what are you all reading lately? Does anyone have suggestions for UF or PNR with some good, old-fashioned vampires?

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