Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige
Sadly, a dud for me. The ideas are AWESOME, I love that Paige clearly loved the books and spent a long time gathering ideas from them and thinking on them. I love the covers and titles, and the sassy dialog of the characters. I just. . .found the writing really flat. I realized when I had gone through three chapters that felt like fanfiction (nothing against fanfiction!) that I just wasn’t interested in spending my limited reading time here. I do not like first-person, and when I do like a first-person book, it’s in spite of being first-person. The writing and the story have to engage me enough to pull me away from the fact that first person feels too simple to me (I learned to write in the era before The Hunger Games, when first-person was generally considered the style of an inexperienced writer). The Darkest Minds totally did that; Dorothy didn’t. And I’m kind of sad it didn’t.
Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein
Dear Narrator team,
Don’t try to convince me your protagonist/narrator is a real country girl if you don’t know the ‘e’ on John Deere is silent. I’m having to take a break in protest to settle my ruffled feathers after being jarred right out of the story.
A Country Girl
How to Be Vegan by Elizabeth Castoria
I’m a former vegetarian, and I have recently found that dairy products hate me. Veganism sounds like it might be in my future, so I thought I’d look at the book. Fun and informative. Castoria has something for all new vegans, although I was mostly in the food section.
In Time by Alexandra Bracken
Bracken is a really good writer. I can’t listen to Never Fade straight through because of all the swearing and I’ve got my little pitchers around. But I did let myself read this book while trapped in bedtime purgatory with the kids and it is good. And sad. I totally got faked out by the ending. I thought there were more chapters ahead because of the preview of Never Fade at the end!
Mountains of Mourning by Lois McMaster Bujold
This was one of those situations where I thought I would only read a few pages, just to get started and then an hour later went, “oh well, it’s way past bedtime, I may as well finish the last 15 pages.”
Lois McMaster Bujold is a good friend of my dearly beloved Patricia C. Wrede, who wrote the Enchanted Forest Chronicles. I have tried listening to Bujold’s A Civil Campaign, but I think I just didn’t gel with the narrator, so I’ll have to wait until I have time to sit down with the chunker of the book. But, Wrede’s dragons live in the Mountains of Morning, so when I saw this short story, I knew that I wanted to give it whirl.
At 88 pages, the story isn’t too long, but covers a LOT of ground. I can completely see why it won a Hugo, and I imagine that a lot of it would mean more in the context of the larger series and Miles’ personal arc. I’m not totally sure I’ll be rushing back to A Civil Campaign, but I am now more sure than not that I’ll give it another try.
Word Puppets by Mary Robinette Kowal
Vicious by V.E. Schwab
Never Fade by Alexandra Bracken