The Sunday Post AKA What’s on my (Mostly Virtual) Nightstand 5-21-16

Sunday Post

I feel like this is a draft even though I’m publishing it. I am SO not sure about the end of the week.

But speaking of things I’m not sure about…I’ve been doing a whole bunch of unsubscribing from mailing lists I’m subscribed to. It’s not that many of them aren’t interesting, it’s that there are just too many. When you unsubscribe, there’s usually a multiple-choice thing as the last step asking why you are unsubscribing. The thing I want to pick is always missing. I can’t honestly say that “I did not subscribe to this mailing list”. What I always want to say is, “I don’t remember subscribing to this mailing list.” Who does?

Current Giveaways:

$10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the Love in Bloom Giveaway Hop

Winner Announcements:

The winner of the $10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the May I Suggest Giveaway Hop is Keeana S.
The winner of the $10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop is Nika C.

Blog Recap:

Love in Bloom Giveaway Hop
A- Review: The Scribe of Siena by Melodie Winawer
C- Review: The Curious Affair of the Somnambulist and the Psychic Thief by Lisa Tuttle
B+ Review: The Nanny Arrangement by Rachel Harris
B Review: The Marriage Bureau by Penrose Halson
Stacking the Shelves (236)

Coming Next Week:

The Guns Above by Robyn Bennis (review)
A Cruel Necessity by L.C. Tyler (review)
A Twisted Vengeance by Candace Robb (review)
City of Light, City of Poison by Holly Tucker (review)
Ice Ghosts by Paul Watson (review)

Stacking the Shelves (236)

Stacking the Shelves

Today’s monster Stacking the Shelves brought to you (and me) by the release of the 2017 Hugo Packet. For those wondering what that is, why that is, or both, here’s the quick recap. The Hugo Awards are nominated and voted upon by both the attending and supporting members of Worldcon (World Science Fiction Convention) for that year. (I am a supporting member of Worldcon 75 in Helsinki. Not going; too far, saving pennies for 2019 in Dublin). It used to be the members’ responsibility to find copies of the nominated works to read before voting. How many and whether everyone did or does is an open question, but as usual I digress. One of the joys of ebooks is that it is relatively inexpensive for publishers to provide ebook copies to the voters of all the nominated works. Considering that a supporting membership currently costs $40, and that the value of the ebook copies of just the best novel nominees is WAY more than $40, it’s a steal. (For those who want the books but not the membership, this year Tor is offering a package of all of their nominated works for $20. Still a steal)

So I’ve listed just the tip of my iceberg here, the best novel, novella, novelette and related works that I didn’t already have. I also picked up the best short story and best graphic novel nominees. You get a lot for that $40 along with the right to vote for the ones you like best. Or vote against the ones you liked least. I intensely disliked All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders, but it got nominated. Taste is individual, and that seems to have been a book that no one was neutral about, either readers loved it or like me, found it completely derivative. We’ll see what happens at Worldcon in August.

For Review:
A Conspiracy in Belgravia (Lady Sherlock #2) by Sherry Thomas
Glass Houses  (Chief Inspector Gamache #13) by Louise Penny
Lowcountry Bonfire (Liz Talbot #6) by Susan M. Boyer
So Great a Prince by Lauren Johnson
Urban Enemies by Jim Butcher, Kevin Hearne, Kelley Armstrong, Seanan McGuire Jonathan Maberry and others, edited by Joseph Massise
You Say It First (Happily Inc #1) by Susan Mallery

Received in Hugo Packet:
The Art of Space Travel by Nina Allan
The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle
A Closed and Common Orbit (Wayfarers #2) by Becky Chambers
Death’s End (Remembrance of Earth’s Past #3) by Cixin Liu
The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe by Kij Johnson
The Jewel and Her Lapidary by Fran Wilde
Ninefox Gambit (Machineries of Empire #1) by Yoon Ha Lee
A Taste of Honey (Sorcerer of the Wildeeps #2) by Kai Ashante Wilson
This Census-Taker by China Mieville
The Tomato Thief (Jackalope Wives #2) by Ursula Vernon (from Apex Magazine)
Too Like the Lightning (Terra Ignota #1) by Ada Palmer
Touring with the Alien by Carolyn Ives Gilman (from Clarkesworld)
Traveler of Worlds: Conversations with Robert Silverberg by Robert Silverberg and Alvaro Zinos-Amaro
Words are My Matter by Ursula K. LeGuin
You’ll Surely Drown Here if You Stay by Alyssa Wong (from Uncanny)

Borrowed from the Library:
The Lost City of the Monkey God by Douglas Preston
The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

The Sunday Post AKA What’s on my (Mostly Virtual) Nightstand 5-14-16

Sunday Post

First of all, Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there. (Including the cat moms (like me) and dog moms and ferret moms and rabbit moms) Today is one of Hallmark’s best days, as so many people send Mother’s Day cards. It’s also one of Kentucky Fried Chicken’s best days of the year. For a lot of families, a bucket of chicken seems to be a great way to get mom out of the kitchen for a day without leaving her a pile of dirty dishes. That KFC acknowledged all of that this year with a surprisingly funny spoof of a romance novel, Tender Wings of Desire, is the icing on the cake. Or the coating on the chicken. I couldn’t quite bring myself to review it, but Amy graciously stepped into the breach with a slightly tongue-in-cheek review on Friday.

But speaking of things to do this weekend, for those of a more geekish persuasion, if you haven’t yet seen Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, I highly recommend it. While it doesn’t manage to capture the lightning in the bottle of the first film, it is still a load of fun. For those of us who lived through the 70s and 80s, it is also a bit scary that I still remember the lyrics to all those songs, even the one-hit wonders like Brandy and Lake Shore Drive. Hopefully I wasn’t singing along with the music loud enough to embarrass Galen. Too much.

The nice thing about being a cat mom is that they can’t be embarrassed by the silly things that their humans do!

Current Giveaways:

$100 Amazon Gift Card and 4 prints of the winner’s choice from Catherine Bybee’s Most Likely To series.
$10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the May I Suggest Giveaway Hop (ends TOMORROW!)
$10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop

Winner Announcements:

The winner of Free Space by Sean Danker is Anne
The winner of The Illusionist’s Apprentice by Kristy Cambron is Nadine

Blog Recap:

A- Review: Goodnight from London by Jennifer Robson
A Review: Making it Right by Catherine Bybee + Giveaway
B Review: Moonglow by Michael Chabon
A- Review: The Girl Who Knew Too Much by Amanda Quick
EXTRA CRISPY Guest Review by Amy: Tender Wings of Desire by Harland Sanders
Stacking the Shelves (235)

Coming Next Week:

Love in Bloom Giveaway Hop
The Scribe of Siena by Melodie Winawer (review)
The Curious Affair of the Somnambulist and the Psychic Thief by Lisa Tuttle (review)
Miss Burma by Charmaine Craig (review)
The Marriage Bureau by Penrose Halson (blog tour review)

Stacking the Shelves (235)

Stacking the Shelves

An explosion of books this week. Every genre under the sun. A Fire Upon the Deep is the Tor Book Club giveaway this month.

I was thrilled to get an eARC of Silver Silence. I had to start the Psy-Changeling series twice, because the first time it just didn’t take. But once it finally got its claws into me, I was all in. So a new book in the series is always a treat. It’s funny, but as much as I love Psy-Changeling, I never managed to get into the Archangel/Guild Hunter series. And I did try. I guess it either didn’t grab me right, or didn’t grab me at the right time.

I kept waffling about Magpie Murders, but it turned up as the number one pick on Library Reads for June, so I decided to get a copy while I still had the chance. We’ll see if it’s as good as The House of Silk. For anyone who is curious, Silver Silence was #2 on the same list, and The Alice Network was #6. It’s always an interesting (and useful) list, especially if your TBR stack is thinning a bit. Or if you just suffer from abibliophobia, like me.

For Review:
The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
Heroine Worship (Heroine Complex #2) by Sarah Kuhn
The Innkeeper’s Sister by Linda Goodnight
The Last Ballad by Wiley Cash
Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz
One Wrong Turn by Deanna Lynn Sletten
Owl and the Electric Samurai (Owl #3) by Kristi Charish
Silver Silence (Psy-Changeling #16, Psy-Changeling Trinity #1) by Nalini Singh
To Tempt an Heiress (Runaway Desires #2) by Susanna Craig
Until You Loved Me (Silver Springs #3) by Brenda Novak
Wildfire (Hidden Legacy #3) by Ilona Andrews

Publisher Giveaway:
A Fire Upon the Deep (Zones of Thought #1) by Vernor Vinge

Borrowed from the Library:
American War by Omar El Akkad
Dark Money by Jane Mayer
Exit West by Mohsin Hamid
Fragile Things by Neil Gaiman
The Ringmaster’s Wife by Kristy Cambron

The Sunday Post AKA What’s on my (Mostly Virtual) Nightstand 5-7-16

Sunday Post

This looks like the first week in quite a while that I haven’t tossed the schedule into a blender mid-week. All winners this time around. And two blog hops. Winners for everyone!

Current Giveaways:

Free Space by Sean Danker
The Illusionist’s Apprentice by Kristy Cambron
$10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop
$10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the May I Suggest Giveaway Hop

Winner Announcements:

The winners of the copies of Mitla Pass by Leon Uris are LL, Tracee, Laura R., Nadine S. and Susan
The winner of the Beautiful Bouquet of Tulips from Susan Mallery is Kim M.
The winner of a $10 Gift Card in the Hoppy Easter Eggstravaganza Giveaway Hop is Beth

Blog Recap:

A- Review: The Illusionist’s Apprentice by Kristy Cambron + Giveaway
A- Review: The Baker’s Secret by Stephen P. Kiernan
Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop
B+ Review: Hell Squad: Theron by Anna Hackett
A- Review: Free Space by Sean Danker + Giveaway
May I Suggest Giveaway Hop
Stacking the Shelves (234)

Coming Next Week:

Goodnight from London by Jennifer Robson (blog tour review)
Making it Right by Catherine Bybee (blog tour review)
The Girl Who Knew Too Much by Amanda Quick (review)
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews (review)
Moonglow by Michael Chabon (review)

Stacking the Shelves (234)

Stacking the Shelves

Not a big week here at the stack, but a couple of books I am really looking forward to. A Casualty of War by Charles Todd is the next book in his Bess Crawford series. This is one war I’m not sure I want to see end. And after years on hiatus, Margaret Maron is going back to her Sigrid Harald series in Take Out. I loved those books but the final one in the original series (Fugitive Colors) was just so sad that I couldn’t read it. I really liked the characters and just didn’t want to see them suffer that much. She brought Sigrid out of “retirement” in one of the later Deborah Knott books, and I still like the character. I’m ready to see how she goes on with her life now.

For Review:
Apollo 8 by Jeffrey Kluger
A Casualty of War (Bess Crawford #9) by Charles Todd
Chasing Space by Leland Melvin
The Color of Law by Richard Rothstein
The Nanny Arrangement (Country Blues #2) by Rachel Harris
The Song and the Silence by Yvette Johnson
Take Out (Sigrid Harald #9) by Margaret Maron

The Sunday Post AKA What’s on my (Mostly Virtual) Nightstand 4-30-16

Sunday Post

The Hoppy Easter Eggstravaganza ends tonight! So if you want a chance at the prize, and all of the prizes all over the hop, get thee hence to the hop participants!

I love the giveaway for Susan Mallery’s Secrets of the Tulip Sisters. There’s a winner at every stop on the tour, which is marvelous. Especially since the prize is a bouquet of tulips that you can either decide to send to yourself, or you can send to someone else, just in time for Mother’s Day. I’ve very tempted to enter on one of the other stops, but my mom doesn’t like to get flowers. Which drives me nuts. I love to get flowers. The only problem is that the cats also love to get flowers. To eat. And to knock over the vase. For them its a win-win. For me, usually a slippy, sloppy wet mess, coming and going.

Current Giveaways:

$10 Gift Card or $10 Book in the Hoppy Easter Eggstravaganza Giveaway Hop (ends TONIGHT!)
Bouquet of Tulips from Susan Mallery and Secrets of the Tulip Sisters
$25 Gift Card from Maisey Yates and Slow Burn Cowboy
Mitla Pass by Leon Uris (5 copies, ebook)

Winner Announcements:

The winner of Any Day Now by Robyn Carr is Susan

Blog Recap:

B Review: Mitla Pass by Leon Uris + Excerpt + Giveaway
C+ Review: Slow Burn Cowboy by Maisey Yates + Giveaway
Sneak Peek at Secrets of the Tulip Sisters by Susan Mallery + Giveaway
B+ Review: Grimoire of the Lamb by Kevin Hearne
B Review: Blood and Circuses by Kerry Greenwood
Stacking the Shelves (233)

Coming Next Week:

The Illusionist’s Apprentice by Kristy Cambron (blog tour review)
The Baker’s Secret by Stephen P. Kiernan (blog tour review)
Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop
Free Space by Sean Danker (review)
Theron by Anna Hackett (review)
May I Suggest Giveaway Hop

Stacking the Shelves (233)

Stacking the Shelves

Lots of interesting things this week. The one I’m really looking forward to is Theron. It’s the latest in Anna Hackett’s terrific Hell Squad series. I love the dystopian setting, the badass heroes and heroines, and the way that the cast keeps working together for a brighter, post-alien-invasion future. I also love that I never have to wait long. Anna is prolific as well as excellent, so I get regular fixes on all her series. If you like action adventure romance and/or science fiction romance, check out her marvelous work!

For Review:
American War by Omar El Akkad
Enchantment of a Highlander (Highlander #3)  by Madeline Martin
The Legendary Lord (Playful Brides #6) by Valerie Bowman
A Pirate’s Revenge (Secrets of the Bayous #3) by Meg Hennessy
Sovereign (Nemesis #2) by April Daniels
The Switch by Justina Robson
Theron (Hell Squad #12) by Anna Hackett
Wild Lavender (Aurelian Guard #1) by Nicole Elizabeth Kelleher

Purchased from Amazon:
The Rogue Prince (Sky Full of Stars #1) by Lindsay Buroker

Borrowed from the Library:
The Refugees by Viet Thanh Nguyen
Thank You for Being Late by Thomas L. Friedman

The Sunday Post AKA What’s on my (Mostly Virtual) Nightstand 4-23-16

Sunday Post

I don’t normally do promo spots, or cover reveals, or spotlights, or anything that doesn’t include a review of the book being featured. It’s my blog and it is what I say it is, and that’s one of the places where I draw the line. I feature original content as much as possible. Usually mine but not always. Occasionally I give something away, which nobody minds a bit. So why the “Sneak Peek” from Susan Mallery?

Consider it a preview of coming attractions. I am also part of the blog tour for the book, and the review is scheduled for July 11, when the book comes out. I loved her Daughters of the Bride last year, and I can’t wait for this one.

But speaking of features – about Mitla Pass. I read Leon Uris in my teens and early 20s, after having glommed onto Exodus one bored afternoon at my grandparents’. When the estate contacted me asking if I would feature one of the books (they’ve been re-released in ebook), it seemed like a golden opportunity to revisit an author I loved, once upon a time. And while the past is still another country, I enjoyed the book, and the trip down memory lane.

Current Giveaways:

$10 Book or $10 Gift Card in the Hoppy Easter Eggstravaganza Giveaway Hop
Any Day Now by Robyn Carr

Winner Announcements:

The winner of the $10 Gift Card or $10 Book in the Rain Rain Go Away Giveaway Hop is Lulu B.
The winner of the $10 Gift Card or $10 Book in the Spring into Romance Giveaway Hop is Ann S.

Blog Recap:

A- Review: Legend Has It by Elliott James
B Review: Any Day Now by Robyn Carr + Giveaway
A- Review: The Jane Austen Project by Kathleen A. Flynn
B Review: Cold Welcome by Elizabeth Moon
C+ Review: The Librarians and the Mother Goose Chase by Greg Cox
Stacking the Shelves (232)

Coming Next Week:

Mitla Pass by Leon Uris (review)
Slow Burn Cowboy by Maisey Yates (blog tour review)
Sneak Peek at Secrets of the Tulip Sisters by Susan Mallery (blog tour)
Miranda and Caliban by Jacqueline Carey (review)
Swing Time by Zadie Smith (review)

Stacking the Shelves (232)

Stacking the Shelves

A blissfully quiet week on both the NetGalley and Edelweiss fronts. Not a lot appeared, not a lot came in. A chance to catch up.

And two trips to Paris! If only through the pages of some good books.

For Review:
The Alexander Inheritance (Ring of Fire) by Eric Flint, Gorg Huff and Paula Goodlett
Away with the Fairies (Phryne Fisher #11) by Kerry Greenwood
Dim Sum Asylum by Rhys Ford
Fatal Charm by Blair McDowell
Last Christmas in Paris by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb
The Paris Spy (Maggie Hope #7) by Susan Elia MacNeal
Unnatural Habits (Phryne Fisher #19) by Kerry Greenwood