New Books & Novel Discoveries (April 2020)

Somehow April felt like another very long month, yet I’m surprised that it’s already over. Time sure is funny sometimes. I hope everybody is staying safe out there. I ended up getting a few more books than I expected I would this month, which is always nice. Can’t wait to share it with you.

Without further ado, on to the books!Read More »

WWW Wednesday – April 29, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

The Strings of MurderI’m still in the midst of The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel, just a little over halfway through. I’ve warmed to the book some more since last week, though admittedly it has more to do with how much the mystery has captured by interest, rather than the characters. They’re still their trope-y selves: Frey is a prim jerk with a conscience and McGray is boorish yet intelligent. I’m still waiting for the penny to drop on them learning to like one another. I find I’m most interested in how much the novel will commit to it’s implied supernatural elements. Frey is the perspective character and sees it all as nonsense, whereas McGray is a believer, so I wonder if it will be debunked, left vague so neither loses, or if Frey’s worldview will be turned upside down.


Recently Finished

Nothing this week. That’s what I get for neglecting comic book volumes. My Goodreads challenge has suffered a tad too. I’ll have to fix that.


Reading Next

Soul MusicWhile a potential comic book read is a flurry of possibilities, I still have the adamant intention to pick up Soul Music by Terry Pratchett as the next novel I read. That will get me halfway through the Discworld novels I’ve allotted for the year. After that, I’m not certain what I will pull from my to-read list for 2020, but I’ve narrowed it down to Other Minds by Peter Godfrey-Smith or White Tears by Hari Kunzru. The former is a nonfiction look into the intelligence of cephalopods, especially octopuses, and the latter is a novel centred around music that is partly ghost story, partly murder mystery. I don’t remember a lot about the second book, to be honest, but I’d like to keep it that way. I guess I’ll have to see which I’m in the mood for when the time comes, at any rate.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

WWW Wednesday – April 22, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

The Strings of MurderOver the weekend I started reading The Strings of Murder, a locked-room mystery by Oscar de Muriel set in Edinburgh, Scotland in the late Victorian era. I’m finding my impressions to be a lot more mixed than is normal for me. On the one hand, I am enjoying reading it; the writing style is fun and easy to get into and I’ve made surprising progress considering my usual pace as of late. I really like the setting too, which highlights the dirtier sides of the era. On the other hand, I’ve not completely invested in the duo of characters yet, inspectors Frey and McGray. They’re a fairly trope-y duo, the typical sort of odd couple, and I’ve found them a tad forced so far. I’ve been steadily warming to them, but I feel like after nearly 150 pages I should well be beyond that.


Recently Finished

The Crocodile HunterOn Sunday I finished reading The Crocodile Hunter by Steve & Terri Irwin, making it officially my second reread of the year (a rarity for me). Reflecting on it all, it’s kind of surprising to me how the actual Crocodile Hunter show is treated as more happenstance than the focus of the book, considering the title. It is, appropriately, much more concerned with sharing the nitty gritty of how Steve performs crocodile capture and relocation, alongside the more personal history of the authors. You really do get a clear sense of just how passionate they are about wildlife. I considered writing a review, but decided not to. I’m happy to share here, but beyond that this reread was more for me, I suppose.


Reading Next

I mean to focus more on my to-read list for the year, and in that vein I think I’m going to crack open Soul Music by Terry Pratchett next, the 16th Discworld novel. I feel a little guilty falling back to this typical fictional haunt for me so soon, but it’s the next book in the Death sub-series. Who could honestly resist?

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

Comic Book Review – Age of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians by Ricardo Delgado

Age of Reptiles Ancient Egyptians

Age of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians by Ricardo Delgado is the fourth book in the author’s graphic novel series fictionalizing the lives of the great behemoths that once dominated our world: the dinosaurs. Set in the swamps of Cretaceous Africa, a region that would become Egypt millions of years later, the story follows a lone Spinosaurus (Spinosaurus Aegypticus) who wanders into a territory teeming with hungry scavengers, vicious predators, and vindictive herbivores who don’t take being prey without a fight. Serving as a sort of prehistoric anti-hero, the Spinosaurus is a force to be reckoned with and his arrival in the environment brings the conflict between these feuding parties violently to a head.Read More »

WWW Wednesday – April 15, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

The Crocodile HunterI’m still in the middle of reading The Crocodile Hunter by Steve & Terri Irwin. I’m really enjoying it, but I wish I’d been faster about getting it finished. Some other things took precedent, which slowed my reading down. Oh well, here we are. I got surprisingly emotional during the last few chapters written by Terri, talking about how she met Steve. This was of course written before his untimely passing, so knowing what the future holds for the authors made some things retroactively sad. This book seems written for an easy reading experience, so it’s actually got me wanting to check out other books written about the Irwins that go into more detail.


Recently Finished

Age of Reptiles Ancient EgyptiansOver the weekend I did manage to read through Age of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians by Ricardo Delgado. It was a much shorter reading experience from the omnibus, telling only one story throughout. I enjoyed it quite a bit; the art is fantastic and packed with small details. There are accompanying essays about how Delgado was influenced by old Westerns and Samurai movies when writing this story and the influence is easy to see. I was most interested in how he utilized the herd of sauropods in the story, giving them a more active role rather than being the usual big, lumbering herbivores that are often terrorized by predators. I’m sad to see that there aren’t any more of these books at the moment. I hope Delgado plans create more.


Reading Next

The Strings of MurderSince I’ve been so indecisive about what to read next, I’m just going to push myself to read something unfamiliar to me on my list: The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel. All I can recall is that it’s the first in a series of fairly standalone mysteries, this one being a locked room mystery about a violinist murdered in his home. I keep saying I want to check out more mysteries, it’s time to make good. I was tempted to start reading Different Seasons by Stephen King, but I got paranoid that I have too many authors I keep going back to every year.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

Book Review – The Faceless Old Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home by Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor

The Faceless Old Woman etc

The Faceless Old Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home by Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor is the third standalone novel set in the world of the Welcome to Night Vale podcast series created and written by the authors. The Faceless Old Woman is a mysterious, spectral figure who has haunted the homes of Night Vale in the series for years now. Often menacing, yet sometimes obtusely helpful, who she might have been and where she came from had always been an unknown. Narrated by the Faceless Old Woman herself, this novel tells her entire life story, from her birth in the Mediterranean in the early 19th century all the way to how she first came to Night Vale, intercut throughout with her meddling in the life of Craig, a young man living in Night Vale in the 2010s.Read More »

WWW Wednesday – April 8, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

The Crocodile HunterLast night I started reading The Crocodile Hunter by Steve & Terri Irwin, a memoir by the pair published before Steve’s untimely passing. I first read this book as a kid; I wasn’t much of a reader then, so it was one of those anomalous books that caught my interest but didn’t spark regular reading from me. I’ve always been something of a reptile nut, and I absolutely loved the Crocodile Hunter show back then, so I wanted to know all about the energetic and affable host. The writing is a little more awkward than I remember, but not to the point that I’m not enjoying it. I expect to have this reread finished relatively soon, as it’s not very long nor densely packed.


Recently Finished

The Faceless Old Woman etcThe other night I finished reading The Faceless Old Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home by Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor, the third standalone Welcome to Night Vale novel. I expressed my misgivings about this book last week, and after steadily reading through it over since then I must say that they were most soundly quelled. This has definitely become my most favourite Night Vale novel. The curtain is peeled back quite a lot for the character, but in such a way that turned out deeply compelling. Just the right amount of information was still kept obscure, and the story itself becomes so gut-wrenching and dark that it was oddly spellbinding. My interest in the series in general feels invigorated after reading this book.


Reading Next

I’m currently mulling over what book to pull from my yearly to-read list next. Haven’t pinned anything down with definite interest yet, but I’ll have to pick something soon. Other than that, expect I will have read the graphic novel Age of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians by Ricardo Delgado by next week, as I meant to before I got completely enthralled by the Faceless Old Woman.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

 

Reading Challenge Update

The first quarter of 2020 has come and gone already, and three months hasn’t felt so long in a very long time. A lot has changed, but at least the books haven’t gone anywhere. Since I’m trying to more seriously approach completing my challenges this year, I thought I’d give a little update about where I’m at with all that.Read More »

WWW Wednesday – April 1, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

The Faceless Old Woman etcOver the weekend I started reading The Faceless Old Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home by Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor, the third Welcome to Night Vale novel. Like its predecessors, this is a standalone story. You needn’t have read the previous books, nor listened to the podcast series, though if you haven’t you will likely have a lot of questions. I have some apprehensions about this book, but so far I am enjoying it. I have these misgivings because the Faceless Old Woman is an enigmatic, creepy character in the series. I am worried that a book dedicated to her origin will be pulling back the curtain too far. That being said, I do really like the way she tells her story in the first-person, plus much of it takes place outside of Night Vale, which is kind of unprecedented. So far I’m optimistic.


Recently Finished

Nothing this week, but that’s okay.


Reading Next

Age of Reptiles Ancient EgyptiansFor starters, a graphic novel has jumped to the head of the line. I just bought a digital copy of Ages of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians by Ricardo Delgado last week and I’m really looking forward to cracking it open (so to speak). I read the omnibus for this series last year and it was a really unique reading experience. This series uses nothing but visual storytelling to tell its tales of these ancient beasts that once roamed the Earth, and I love that about it alone. Also, dinosaurs are awesome. Other than that, I’ve been thinking a more and more about rereading The Crocodile Hunter by Steve & Terri Irwin, which is a memoir by the famous pair that I first read as a kid. A lot of it has stuck with me and I’d love to give it a second look after all this time.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.