June 2017 was a month I spent at book conventions. My TBR has exploded and it’s time I definitely got a bookshelf. Except, this month, I have to find a new apartment that can fit a new bookshelf. But first, here are the books I read in June. The rest comes later.
What I Learned: Expanding a World & Raising the Stakes
Alina Starkov gets to play more with her ensemble cast in this sequel to an already fun book and world. Bardugo does a great job introducing more of the international strife that comes with dealing with the Darkling. The way she introduced all the new factions and the individual tensions among the Grisha classes was very compelling. It added an extra layer of peril to an already world-threatening menace. I also appreciated the mythology of Ravka, starting the book off with the great sea serpent and the greater implications it has for the story at large. I cannot wait to dive into Book 3 and see how the personal meshes with the international.
What I Learned: Destroying a Book with Your Own Hype
I had some strange expectations for this one. Perhaps because of that, I couldn’t get the same enjoyment out of it as others on Goodreads. Kind of went into this one with already an idea in my head of how it was going to go down. While Discreet Young Gentleman had some tender moments, overall, it felt a little bland to me and that might have been my fault.
What I Learned: Seamless World-Building
Received as an ARC at BookCon 2017. Lee’s ability to build a world is masterful. The city where this family feud with daggers and magic takes place is so carefully crafted, I found it hard to believe that it’s a fictional place. I did not question a single thing and none of it felt info-dumpy. Lee draws you into the world of the Green Bones and I was so sad to leave that world once I turned the last page.
What I Learned: How to Play with Tropes
Received as part of Book of the Month Club. This book gave me so much delight because it was really fun and endearing. Those are the worst words to use to describe a story about two spy boys on a life or death mission, but I’m sticking to it. Dietrich clearly had fun playing with the love triangle trope and I’m so glad it turned into an actual love triangle. The characters are very much written tongue-in-cheek, but with so much personality that it was a very difficult book to put down. Plus, the pop culture references were on point.
What I Learned: Speak to Your Audience
I started an opportunity with my graduate school to work with a software company that works with auto pricing. Pollak really tapped into the lingo car salespeople use (being a salesperson himself) and it helped see why his methodology for pricing vehicles has been so successful. I now know more about cars than I ever cared to.
Short Story Shout-Out
Martin Cahill, this month’s Author to Author, came out with a new piece for Shimmer Magazine, “Salamander Six-Guns.” It features queer cowboys, crocodile men, and high impact emotional story telling.
I have a really good feeling about how July is going to go. Thieves Project is really coming into its own as a project and it’s realistic that I’ll get it done by August. Currently doing a #QBFFsRead where all month long, Elliott Junkyard and I are reading queer books, a new one every week.