Saturday, June 8, 2013

May 2013 Recap: Books Read + Mini & Updates


Is May over? It is! I'm afraid that time-wise, I paid a high price for my little vacation. I'm hoping that this next week I will be able to catch up with some reviews and posts.

Oh... first. I finally went through Feedly and realize that I missed out on lots of news including the results of the Lambda Awards. Although as always with these awards I suffered disappointments, -- Hello! Slow Lightning by Eduardo C. Corral in poetry or at least Looking for the Gulf Motel by Richard Blanco! And, what about A Horse Named Sorrow by Trebor Healy in Gay Fiction? What?! -- to be fair, I will have to read the books by the winners in these categories to compare and decide for myself. But, and this is a big but, I was quite happy to at least see one book that I loved in there. I am late, but better late than never:

Congratulations to Tom Cardamone! Winner of Lambda's LGBT Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror (in other words, Speculative Fiction) for his fantastic and creative, Green Thumb! This book was one of my favorite of 2012 and I pimped it to death last year for good reason. The recognition is well-deserved.

Second, due to my problematic schedule, I was unable to attend the Nalini Singh signing for Heart of Obsidian in NYC on June 6th. I rushed and read the book ahead of time to prepare too! Needless to say, I was upset and disappointed! Mariana went without me, had a great time, and was nice enough to sent me her notes and little tidbits of information. Thank you. :)

Now going back to the regularly scheduled program, here is my summary of books read for the month of May:

Total books read: 9
 Contemporary: 2
 Paranormal Romance: 2
 Mystery/Western: 1
 Classic Lit: 1
 Speculative Fiction: 1
 LGBT: 2 (1 Speculative Fiction; 1 Fiction)

Wallbanger by Alice Clayton: A-
Following is my short comment about Wallbanger from Goodreads:
Loved this book! What an insanely funny, sexy, contemporary romance... Such an unexpected and refreshing read! Lurved Sexy Simon, Crazy Caroline, and Conniving Clive. I will have to read this again. *g*
By the way, Clive is Caroline's cat. A few extras I would like to say about Wallbanger. First, the cover is deceiving, this is not an erotic romance per se, it is a sexy, comedic, contemporary romance. Why do I say that? Well, even though Caroline spends about half of the book bemoaning the loss of her "O"(and she bemoans it for a long time), the relationship that ensues is based on an established friendship and attraction. Second, this book is a blast, it's so funny. Sexual innuendos abound from beginning to end, and there is even a bit of slapstick that takes place -- just read the first over-the-top sex scene. And last, I found out after I read the book that this novel is a result of fanfic based on the Twilight novels. Since I never read Twilight, I did not, and would not, recognize the similarities unless (from what I've heard) there was a sparkly vampire stalking an underaged girl included, (there is not). If this matters to you as a reader, then take it into consideration before picking up the book. Regardless, I enjoyed the heck out of myself while reading this story and still say that Wallbanger is a fun contemporary with insane characters and even more insane circumstances. I needed that...

Wilde Stories 2013: The Best Gay Speculative Fiction ed. by Steve Berman: B+
With a combination of gay young adult and adult speculative fiction, this year's Wilde Stories volume is a wonderful addition to Berman's yearly collections. You will find adventure, camp, humor, horror, and stories that will make you think and wonder. I thoroughly enjoyed this anthology.

The Resurrectionist: The Lost Work of Dr. Spencer Black by E. B. Hudspeth: B+
Talk about a unique book! This is a book that I loved because the illustrations are not only beautiful and give the book a great look, but once you stop admiring them and read the short biography-style story, they become a key element to the whole. A great debut for the multi-talented Hudspeth.

The Cold Dish (Walt Longmire #1) by Craig Johnson: B+
Have you read a western mystery by Craig Johnson? If you haven't you should try one. Actually if you don't want to get addicted, maybe you should not. I became addicted after reading this excellent first book in the 9 book series and ended up reading FIVE books in a row, including the latest release! (Upcoming Post)

Hearts of Shadow (Deadglass #2) by Kira Brady: B-
I follow few paranormal romance series these days, but I really enjoyed the first book of Brady's Deadglass Novel trilogy. As the second book, Hearts of Shadow is not as gripping as that first book, however, it turned out to be a very good follow-up read for me and I'm looking forward to reading the last book of the trilogy.

Unexpected Family by Molly O'Keefe: B-
This book was my pick for May's TBR Challenge read. It was my first Molly O'Keefe read and as it turned out a very good one. I like how the author approached and developed her characters, and most of all how I came to care about them all by the end of the story. I will definitely read more books by Ms. O'Keefe!

Hearts of Fire (Deadglass novella) by Kira Brady: C+
This novella was included at the end of Hearts of Shadow. I enjoyed the extra information and background that it provides about Brady's world-building, even if the romance is too quickly executed.

Best Gay Stories 2013 ed. by Steve Berman (Upcoming Review)
This anthology released on June 1, 2013 and is an absolute winner! I can tell you that much right now. It is gay fiction and includes some magnificent writing and stories. More to come.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (Re-read)
Ahh, The Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald! I re-read this book for my Internet Book Club for June! It's so short that I finished it too soon (in May)... I may, or may not, write my thoughts on this book here later. I can tell you that I had some very strong feelings about it the first I read it long ago, and have some pretty strong feelings about it now.
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That is it for my May reads! Of the books already graded, four of them stand out as favorites: Wallbanger, the Wilde Stories 2013 anthology, The Resurrectionist, and The Cold Dish. I will remember May 2013 for quality vs. quantity. That's a pretty good reading month in my book!

6 comments:

  1. So interesting about Wallbanger. I totally assumed it was erotic romance and kind of passed by its reviews on goodreads when I saw it floating around. Now I'm interested in reading it! Thanks for correcting my misimpression!

    I read Hearts of Shadow a while back, myself and liked it a bit more than you. I'd give it a B+.. I adored Grace and thought the plot was pretty compelling. I really can't wait for the next book!

    I want to finish my current read, then read my TBR book for next Wed, but THEN The Great Gatsby is next. Can't wait to discuss with you. Yinx posted some responses to the discussion questions today if you feel like going over there to put in your 2 cents. ;)

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    1. Christine, Wallbanger was a hoot to read! I was rather surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It was really unexpected. Hearts of Shadow was a very good read for me and I liked Grace too! I'm really looking forward to the last book of the trilogy. :)

      Oh, The Great G! I must check out Ms. Yinx's comments. That book is such a quick read, you'll finish it in no time at all. Looking forward to discussing it with you too. :)

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  2. We always pay for vacations it seems Hils :) Blog-wise and reading-wise LOL.

    Looks like May was a bit of a slow month for you, but at least, it was good quality-wise! Definitively need to give Wallbanger a try. Erotic comedy huh... :)

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    1. Yes! I didn't read a lot, but enjoyed most of the books I read. My June is going along the same lines. *g*

      Give Wallbanger a shot... I think you may enjoy it.

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  3. Oh and that's too bad, missing out on Nalini Singh's signing :( however, the good thing is that you've met her before :)

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    1. Nath, I think if I had not met Nalini Singh already, I would have been devasted! As it was, I was quite upset... Oh well, there's always next time! :D

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