What’s on my (mostly virtual) nightstand? 2-26-12

In the cool beans category, I found a neat new organizational tool, Better Google Tasks, from Bit51. I’ve been tracking the books I’m supposed to read, along with all my other stuff, in Google Tasks. Google Tasks works, but feature-rich, it ain’t. Better Google Tasks has one feature I’ve been dying for. It let’s me move stuff down the list (to a later date) without having to open every entry. For when my calendar, ahem, slips.

Moving right along…

Is anyone else having a difficult time grasping the concept that March begins next week. On the one hand, this is a Leap Year, so there are 29 days in February. And on the other hand, another month bites the dust. March 1 is Thursday. Time keeps on slipping into the future.

March 1st brings new books to be reviewed.

The first book is, fittingly enough, the first in a new series by Nicci French. The title is Blue Monday, and this is a murder mystery thriller. I requested it from NetGalley because I wanted to get some more mysteries, and when I didn’t get it, I also requested it from Edelweiss. Of course, I eventually received permission from both places!

There was a title from the Carina Press catalog that grabbed my attention for early next week. I’ve been on a steampunk kick, and Heart of Perdition by Selah March definitely falls into that category. A love story about a cursed woman and a man doomed to die with the end of the century sounds like not only steampunk, but also a “three-hankie special” unless the author pulls a happy ending out of her hat along with her hatpin.

My paranormal tastebuds will be indulged by a foray into Juliana Stone’s new series, The League of Guardians. The teaser novella, Wrong Side of Hell, is on my list for March 5 from NetGalley. And yes, the novel it is a teaser for, Wicked Road to Hell, was also available from NetGalley, and it’s on my list for a little later (if I can resist temptation after I read the prequel).

Last up, my curiosity is being sated. I have a copy of one of Samhain’s new/old Retro Romances to review for Library Journal. Donovan’s Bed by Debra Mullins is part of their Retro Historical line, and I fully admit I’ve been terribly curious to see how these Retro titles hold up. I’ve read a few reviews at Get Yer Bodices Ripped Here, and their reviews are side-splittingly funny. The older the book, the more hilarious the review. I know the intent of the Retro line is to re-publish romances from an era when the sex was toned down a bit. The problem is that attitudes about a lot of other things have changed since then. This is going to be really interesting, but maybe for the book, and maybe not.

Looking back at last week’s list, I didn’t do so bad. Well, for certain select definitions of bad.  50/50. Reviews for Synthetic Dreams and A Rogue by Any Other Name are both queued up and ready to run this week. I’m about 2/3rds of the way through Arctic Dreams, so I’m well past the point of no return. I really need to find out how it’s going to end.

I sent my editor my first review for the print Library Journal. But because of the very long lead time, my review of Dark Magic by James Swain won’t appear here for months. I will say that I really, really liked the book. A lot. As in I finished it all in one sitting. If you like dark fantasy, it’s well worth putting in your TBR list.

I also finished Humanotica: Silver for Book Lovers Inc. I’m struggling with writing it up. I swallowed the book whole, it was a fascinating world. But some things in the characters and the world bothered me, and it’s making the writing difficult. This is a case where the BLI format of “My Thoughts” may work better than the usual review.

And oh yes did I ever read Celebrity in Death. Not quite New York to Dallas, but yes, yes, yes. This may tell you how much I liked Dark Magic. I was in the middle of Dark Magic at midnight when Celebrity in Death came out, and I couldn’t put the book down to get Celebrity in Death. I had to finish Dark Magic first.

I’ve probably teased you enough about a book that won’t be out until May.

Remember, Ebook Review Central tomorrow with Samhain!