Well, October ended up being a light reading month. I think it was because it was supposed to be a heavy NaNoWriMo prep month. But that… didn’t happen as much as I would have liked. And November was NaNoWriMo, during which I basically did nothing except write. (You can read about my NaNoWriMo prep and progress here.) In December I tried to catch up as much as I could on my reading, but at the same time I think my brain is too cold to decide what I want to read.
72. The Lost Sister (The Folk of the Air 1.5)* by Holly Black
This was a short little teaser, to hold us over until The Wicked King released. It was nice to learn a little more about the sisters and their relationship from the perspective of the other sister, but I’m still looking forward to reading the next book in the series.
73. A Companion to Wolves (Iskryne 1) by Sarah Monnette & Elizabeth Bear
This is a comfort read for me. I’ve probably read this book six or ten times since it was published, and it continues to be a favorite of mine. I should have been paying attention to exactly what I love about this book and what makes me reread it about once a year, but I love it so much that I wasn’t paying attention at all. I was just enjoying it.
74. The Phoenix Empress (Their Bright Ascendancy 2)* by K. Arsenault Rivera
I loved the first book in this series, and this book is no exception. At the same time, I was about 70% of the way through this book when I suddenly realized that this book wasn’t going to get quite as much done as I thought. That’s mostly all right, as there’s another book
75. Kingdom of Ash (Throne of Glass 7)* by Sarah J. Maas
There’s something about the last book in a series. All the rest of the books have been leading up to this, the final showdown. The author has built everything up, and up, and UP, and now that’s about to pay off. This book delivers on that. If there are any parts of this book that are slow, I honestly don’t remember them. The whole book just seems to barrel forwards with all the momentum of the six previous books, and it felt like non-stop action from the first page to the last.
76. Diamond Fire (Hidden Legacy 3.5)* by Ilona Andrews
Nice little bridge between the first trilogy starring Nevada, and the second, forthcoming trilogy starring the next of the Baylor sisters, Catalina. I’m looking forward to seeing what sort of shenanigans Catalina will get up to in her own books, and this was an excellent teaser.
77. A Queen From the North (Royal Roses 1) by Erin McRae and Racheline Maltese
I didn’t know that I needed modern royal romances, but apparently I do. I loved this book, and the premise. I reread this because I realized that there’s no news on the sequel the authors have announced and I needed more modern royal romance. I am really looking forward to the sequel!
78. Time’s Convert (All Souls 4)* by Deborah Harkness
This book felt like a novella, even though I think it’s the size of a novel. The three main books were loaded with plot and plot twists, which made them suspenseful in their telling. There was no suspense in this book. I had complete faith that all the characters involved would come through, their troubles only momentary. That’s not to say that this wasn’t a delight to read, because it was! Marcus and Phoebe are characters that I wanted to know more about in the main trilogy, and it was nice to spend some time with them and learn more about them. The author has said that she’s working on other novels about other characters from this series—last I heard, we were getting a novel that would feature Phillipe heavily, which is would be amazing—but honestly anything by this author is sure to be delightful.
79. 2K to 10K: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love by Rachel Aaron
This is probably my favorite writing book (though honestly I haven’t read many) but this reread was specifically focusing on how to work some of these techniques into my own writing. I even marked up my copy of the book, highlighting sections that I thought would be the most useful.
80. Morrigan’s Cross (The Circle Trilogy 1) by Nora Roberts
81. Dance of the Gods (The Circle Trilogy 2) by Nora Roberts
82. Valley of Silence (The Circle Trilogy 3) by Nora Roberts
Look, sometimes I just need a little romance, and Nora Roberts is my fave. It’s possible that these books were the first Nora Roberts books I ever read (or at least were some of the first), so these books have a fair amount of nostalgia for me. These three books are ones that I haven’t reread before, and the first time I read them was in 2007, so it’s been a while. I chose to reread these ones now because the ones that involve magic are always my favorite, and because I’ve been toying with the idea of writing a something that leans a little heavily into the romance genre, and I wanted a reminder about how that could be done. There’s something to be said for the formula that a romance follows, and how that formula can be changed and adapted to fit the sort of romance a person might write. It’s definitely something I’m looking forward to playing with.
2018 didn’t end quite as strongly as it began, but that’s ok. I feel really good about the books I read last year, and the things I may have learned while reading—which was at least partially the point.
I think this rereading experiment was a success. I didn’t quite read as many books as I hoped thanks to the last few months of the year being… weird, but that’s ok. I wanted to beat my previous record—87 books—but 82 is still pretty impressive. This year I set my Goodreads challenge to 80 books. I don’t know if that’s ambitious or not, but right now it feels doable. The list I’ll be drawing from this year is… longer than the list from last year.
This year I happen to be starting with some rereads for no real reason other than “I want to” and I’ve given myself permission to not feel guilty when I reread books now. But as soon as I get through the books I’m rereading, I’m looking forward to diving into some new books.