2015 reading update – 1

I’ve been keeping track of all the books I have read since elementary school (I will tell you allllll about the Book of Books in another post), but only in the last few years have I also kept lists by year. If you’re curious, you can check out the annual lists on this site by selecting a year from the “Readings” category in the menu.

I figure every few months I’ll pop in and highlight some of my recent reads, in case anyone else is looking for a recommendation. (Note that not highlighting a book here doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it– this is just the nature of highlights).

This semi-annual blog topic will serve a secondary purpose as well: publicly shaming me into keeping up with my annual reading goal. It’s a modest goal: a minimum of 52 books per year. One new story/plot/world absorbed per week. I know folks who fly through several books a week, and I envy them, but I juggle this against several other life goals, so there you go.

Without further ado!


Books Read So Far This Year: 15 (well on track!!)


I started off the year by completing a Harry Potter re-read, which I’ve already blogged about. It was my second time reading through the series, not having read them since they came out, and it was a very satisfying experience! I won’t repeat the same observations, so you can check out my notes here.

New Books by Authors I Already Read:

Clementine by Cherie Priest – I love the Clockwork Century novels, and this was the only one I was missing due to its limited original print run. It did not disappoint! Ex-Confederate spy Maria Boyd is embarking on her first assignment for the Pinkerton National Detective Agency, while ex-slave and felonious airship captain Croggon Hainey is trying to hunt down the thieves who took his ship. What else should I say?

The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There by Catherynne M. Valente – I’m planning to devour everything written by this woman, so be prepared for more mentions in this year’s reading updates. The Fairyland series is supposedly for children, but don’t let that stop you. They are just as full of beautiful prose and touching observations as the rest of her work. Read it all!!

Books by New Authors:

God’s War by Kameron Hurley – Hurley had been on my wishlist for a while. I had vaguely heard of her books while drumming up recommendations for less traditional, less Euro-centric SF/F. Then I started reading her blog. Finally I grabbed book 1 of her first trilogy. Bug magic and bounty hunters in an Islamic scifi world ravaged by an endless holy war. I’ll definitely be picking up the other two (Infidel and Rapture) to see how things turn out.

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson – I read this for my book club and oh my gosh it was hilarious. It is the (mostly true) memoir of blogger Jenny Lawson, and now I’ll have to start following her blog. The book contains a series of anecdotes about her ridiculous taxidermy-infused childhood in rural Texas through an equally strange adulthood grappling with anxiety and OCD. I think this might be the first book (out of the 35 that we have read so far) that everyone in my club enjoyed. It was so funny that I immediately forced it on one of my sisters to read, and when she is done I’ll force it on another one.