Saturday, April 19, 2014

My Month in Reading and Upcoming Reviews

I have been much less active on my blog the past month due to a job change. Prior to my new job, I was working part time so I was pounding out reviews and reading several books each week. Not surprisingly, working full time has cut my output down drastically and it has been 1 month since my last post, when I reviewed the excellent book The Barrow, by Mark Smylie. So here's what I have been reading the past month as well as what I have coming up.

I gave 3 stars to Traitor's Blade by Sebastien de Castell and The Boy with the Porcelain Blade by Den Patrick, both highly anticipated releases. Neither were bad books; rather, I think they would work for a lot of people and were well written and well imagined. Also tried again was John Gwynn's acclaimed debut and David Gemmell Morningstar award winner Malice. I read about half of it and there were parts I loved but there were too many characters for me and it just seemed slow. As with Traitor's Blade and The Boy with the Porcelain Blade, Malice should appeal to fantasy readers and it has a ton to offer in an immersive and fascinating world. I think I have reached or nearly reached my personal limit for new fantasy. Any of these three books I would most likely have loved if I read them a few years ago. But currently I am in the middle of at least 60 (a conservative estimate) series and I think that until I catch up, I should pass on most completely new worlds unless they are grimdark.

I received a review copy of  Brandon Sanderson's second book in The Stormlight Archive, Words of Radiance, and after about 300 pages I stopped. The first book, The Way of Kings, is one of my all time favorites and I am unclear as to why Words of Radiance didn't work for me. I had a bit of trouble reconnecting with the characters and I was just kind of lost, not particularly caring about any of the characters. It is a monster of a book and the scope is about the largest I have come across. Maybe after so much reading the past year I am a different reader and my tastes are refined to a specific genre.  I will either reread book 1 and then try book 2 again or I will just retry book 2 when I'm more caught up.

I read some excellent historical fiction, Blood Eye by Giles Kristian and The Last Kingdom by Bernard Cornwell. Both were brutal, violent, action packed sagas and I can't wait to read the follow-ups already released. Also read was another Viking book, which I consider historical fantasy, which was Wolfsangel by M.D. Lachlan and it was a good book but I felt it was unsteady and a bit confusing. I plan to try the next one. A lot of people have enjoyed that series. I also read two books by Glenn Thater, The Gateway and The Fallen Angle, both in the Harbinger of Doom series, which are more fantasy but also with Vikings, and while they are not well known, they are very grimdark and I had a blast reading them! I highly recommend them if you enjoy Vikings fantasy. Book three, Knight Eternal, is supposed to be the best in the series I will pick it up soon.

I read two more excellent David Gemmell books, one was in the Drenai series book 9 called Hero in the Shadows and the other was Jon Shannow book 2, The Last Guardian, and I loved them both. If you haven't read Gemmell, start now! He is one of the best.

Veil of the Deserters (Bloodsounder's Arc, #2)
Jeff Salyards Bloodsounder's Arc book 2 comes out June 3, called Veil of the Deserters. I read it. I loved it! If you haven't read his first book, Scourge of the Betrayer, read it now. Review is set for release day. I also read The White Towers, by Andy Remic, book 2 in The Rage of Kings series. he never disappoints and he doesn't here. Review set for June17 when it comes out.






I have ARC's of the following; Half a King, a new series by Joe Abercrombie; Prince of Fools, book 1 in a new series by my favorite author Mark Lawrence; The Incorruptibles, by John Horner Jacobs, a book reviewed by Mark Lawrence and it looks like the kind of book I will love featuring a band of mercenaries; and Sworn in Steel, book 2 in the Tales of the Kin series by Douglas Hulick which comes out May 6. The others come out in June so watch for those reviews.

In between these books I will continue reading Gemmell books, reread Mark Lawrence's Broken Empire series, read Red Country and The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie, try Armageddon Bound by Tim Marquitz and No Return by Zachary Jernigan, and get back to The Dark Tower series by Stephen King.

4 comments:

David Cox said...

It's great to have an update! I can empathise with other commitments preventing you form getting your teeth into as many books as you'd like right now. I'm only part time right now but juggling that with school is tricky. Still, this blog is superb! Keep the content coming whenever you can. I'm loving White Towers so far!

philip witvliet said...

Thanks David! When I was in school and working I was lucky to read one book a week! June should be good for reviews! Glad you are loving White Towers. I hope you review it for Goodreads I would love to read your review.

Cursed Armada said...

I've been a bit slower myself! I think I'm addicted to Dark Souls 2... Seriously it's pretty bad... Where are you at in the game? I'm in Drangleic castle. Oh and how are you getting hooked up with so many ARC's?! Hope all is well bro!

philip witvliet said...

Cursed Amanda, I have not gotten it yet, too many commitments and I hate to drop $60 on a game. As for the ARC's, I find publicists to email and tell them about my blog as well as Edelweiss and Netgalley. A few publicists have reached out to me as well. So it's very exciting! I have several more books to read for reviews then I should be caught up and can get DS2. I heard it's even better and has gotten near universal praise.