Shut Up. I’ve Been Reading.

Over the last year I decided to keep track of all the books I read in a journal. The process had its good points and its bad. On the one hand, it was nice to be able to go back and find the name of “that one book with the bear” without having to autopsy a vague list of Google results. On the other, I’m HIGHLY competitive, even with myself. A lot of the time, I found myself buzzing through books just to get them on The List without actually losing myself in the story. That sucked. On the other, OTHER, hand, I get to make this cool list. It all evens out. I’ve included the cover art and buy links for my favorites of the year.

 

AUGUST 2016

 

The Three by Sarah Lotz

Swamplandia by Karen Russell

Swamplandia

The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury

Magic for Beginners by Kelly Link

Magic foe

Just Like Beauty by Lisa Lerner

 

SEPTEMBER 2016

 

Geek Love by Katherine Dunn

Geek Love

The Girls at the Kingfisher Club by Genevieve Valentine

Kingfisher

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of her Own Making by Catherynne M Valente

Evil at Heart by Chelsea Cain

Coconut Cowboy by Tim Dorsey

Stormy Weather by Carl Hiassen

My Best Friend’s Exorcism by Grady Hendrix

Razor Girl by Carl Hiassen

Story Genius by Lisa Cron

 

OCTOBER 2016

 

The Darkest Secret by Alex Marwood

darkest secret

We’re All Damaged by Matthew Norman

damaged

The Vanishing Year by Kate Moretti

vanishing

Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch

rivers of

Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch

Broken Piano for President by Patrick Wensink

Red Queen by Christina Henry

 

NOVEMBER 2016

 

Mile Marker Zero by William McKeen

Leisel and Po by Lauren Oliver

Radiance by Catherynne M Valente

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Whispers Underground by Ben Aaronovitch

Shrill by Lindy West

Eric by Terry Prachett

Broken Homes by Ben Aaronovitch

Moscow but Dreaming by Ekaterina Sedia

moscow but

Foxglove Summer by Ben Aaronovitch (His Peter Grant series is addicting, obvs.)

Best State Ever by Dave Berry

Palimpsest by Catherynne M Valente

Hidden Bodies by Caroline Kepnes

hidden bodies

Under the Big Top by Bruce Feiler

The Children’s Home by Charles Lambert

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

 

DECEMBER 2016

 

Speak Easy by Catherynne M Valente

speak easy

Briar Rose by Jane Yolen

The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

lie tree

New Yorked by Rob Hart

How to Ruin Everything by George Watsky

Still Life With Tornado by A.S. King

Blood Red, Snow White by Marcus Sedgwick

The Resurrectionist by E.B. Hudspeth

The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan

grace keepers

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

bone gap

 

JANUARY 2017

 

From the Forest by Sara Maitland

Little Nothing by Marisa Silver

little nothing

City of Rose by Rob Hart

Walk Through Walls by Marina Abromovic

The First Book of Calamity Leek by Paula Lichtarowicz

calamity

Girl Bomb by Janice Erlbaum

The Good, the Bad, and the Smug by Tom Holt

The Morning They Came for Us by Janine di Giovanni

The Clay Girl by Heather Tucker

clay girl

The Summer that Melted Everything by Tiffany McDaniel

What We See When We Read by Peter Mendelsund

The Apartment by S. L. Grey

Only Daughter by Anna Snoekstra

The Hanging Tree by Ben Aaronovitch

 

FEBRUARY 2017

 

Behind her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

behind

The Last Place You’d Look by Carole Moore

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

bear and

Crime Beat by Michael Connolley

The End of Everything by Megan Abbott

The Shut Eye by Belinda Bauer

The Song is You by Megan Abbott

song is

Dismantled by Jennifer McMahon

You Will Know Me by Megan Abbott

 

MARCH 2017

 

The Last Days of Jack Sparks by Jason Arnopp

jack sparks

Pretty Monsters by Kelly Link

Girls on Fire by Robin Wasserman

girls on fire

Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healy

elizabeth

The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter

Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver

The Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

Tell Me Exactly What Happened by Caroline Burau

tell me

The Collector by John Fowles

Hag Seed by Margaret Atwood

hag seed

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

 

APRIL 2017

 

Anne Perry and the Murder of the Century by Peter Graham

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North

Day Four by Sarah Lotz

Faithful Place by Tana French

Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith

Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

The Secret Place by Tana French

secret

The Next Queen of Heaven by Gregory Maguire

Bellman and Black by Diane Setterfield

 

MAY 2017

 

Burntown by Jennifer McMahon

Rooms by Lauren Oliver

rooms

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

station

Where’d You Go, Bernadette? By Maria Semple

bernadette

The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling

This One is Mine by Maria Semple

Fly by Night by Frances Hardinge

In the Woods by Tana French

Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown

 

JUNE 2017

 

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

darker shade

Before This is Over by Amanda Hickie

The Facts of Life and Death by Brenda Bauer

Danger to Self by Paul Linde

Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel

The Transcriptionist by Amy Rowland

I Crawl Through It by A.S. King

Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire

down among

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

Amp’d by Ken Pisani

ampd

 

JULY 2017

 

Party of One by Dave Holmes

The Good Daughter by Alexandra Burt

good daughter

Lucky You by Erika Carter

Abroad by Katie Crouch

Don’t Breathe a Word by Jennifer McMahon

The Rathbones by Janice Clark

Birthdays and Celebrations– Or: Reasons to Open the Wine Before Noon

While the Google Doodle is blowing up balloons, celebrating being old enough to vote, we’ve got some announcements and shenanigans happening here, too.

First, ALL DARLING CHILDREN has an official (e-book) release date of October 20th. Mark it on your calendars, tell your friends, cuddle your Pooh Bear in nervous anticipation. For now, here’s a cover and blurb:

all-darling-children-hi-res

Ain’t she GORGEOUS?

All boys grow up, except one.

On the tenth anniversary of her mother’s death, fourteen-year-old Madge Darling’s grandmother suffers a heart attack. With the overbearing Grandma Wendy in the hospital, Madge runs away to Chicago, intent on tracking down a woman she believes is actually her mother.

On her way to the Windy City, a boy named Peter Pan lures Madge to Neverland, a magical place where children can remain young forever. While Pan plays puppet master in a twisted game only he understands, Madge discovers the disturbing price of Peter Pan’s eternal youth.

If that don’t tickle your fairy tale bone, I don’t know WHAT will.

 

Second, I’m getting MARRIED. To celebrate, I’ll be making A TALE DU MORT free on Amazon from Saturday to Sunday. So, you can read (and review! please!) while I’m betting half my stuff that this will all work out just fine.

 

Finally, I want you all to wish Kate Moretti a huge HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY on the release of THE VANISHING YEAR, which Mary Kubica called “a stunner!” I’ll be picking it up today to take with me on my honeymoon. Here’s a cover and a blurb:

51w2oup-egl

Zoe Whittaker is living a charmed life. She is the beautiful young wife to handsome, charming Wall Street tycoon Henry Whittaker. She is a member of Manhattan’s social elite. She is on the board of one of the city’s most prestigious philanthropic organizations. She has a perfect Tribeca penthouse in the city and a gorgeous lake house in the country. The finest wine, the most up-to-date fashion, and the most luxurious vacations are all at her fingertips.

What no one knows is that five years ago, Zoe’s life was in danger. Back then, Zoe wasn’t Zoe at all. Now her secrets are coming back to haunt her.

As the past and present collide, Zoe must decide who she can trust before she—whoever she is—vanishes completely.

Pick up your copy today and don’t forget to leave her a review. Happy Tuesday!

The Legend of Jackson Murphy by Renee Miller – A Review

Image

Today, my good friend and writing mentor’s novel, THE LEGEND OF JACKSON MURPHY became available in paperback and I couldn’t be more excited. Of all of her work that I’ve had the pleasure of reading, this is hands down my favorite.

Blurb:

Jackson Murphy wants to end his marriage and keep his money. There are many ways out of a bad marriage but Jack chooses the most expedient one. He commits the perfect murder but his brilliance leads to trouble. Soon, his business partner wants out, his mistress insists on a wedding ring, his blackmailing cousin comes back for more, and an enterprising competitor tries to squeeze Jack out of business. Each problem he eliminates creates two more. Jack ends up on the run from the Mob and a tenacious police detective. What they don’t yet know is this: what Jackson Murphy wants, Jackson Murphy gets. And he wants freedom…at any price.

The Legend of Jackson Murphy is a novel that makes you inch toward the edge of your seat with a menacing giggle on your lips as each page turns.

Because, you see, Jackson Murphy is an asshole. The reader can’t decide whether to love or hate him. With each triumph and misstep, we are awash with delicious internal conflict that draws us deeper into Jackson’s heinous plans.

Flanking Jackson is a cast of characters worthy of gracing the same page as the protagonist. A plethora of personalities shine with their own little stars, no matter how small their role. As previously shown with In The Bones, Miller proves again that she is fully capable of juggling a larger character set in a way that keeps the reader from getting lost in the tangle.

What’s most intriguing about the novel is how believable the plot is; how possible and even likely it is that Jackson’s motivations throughout the book could be placed in the minds of people we know. Not everyone is above murder, and for some it only takes a little push (or the threat of losing money).

While I won’t give away the ending, I will tell you that once you’ve reached it, you will close the book with a smirk to rival that of Jackson Murphy.

Grab a copy here, and let the games begin.