I got the Riverdale Humble Bundle a while ago and I've been powering through everything I haven't read.
Archie is a slick take on the old comics, bringing Archie and crew into the modern world. In this volume, Reggie and Archie drag race, leading to a traumatic crash that brings everyone together as they wait to see if their friend will recover at all.
It's tense, and the fact that I cared about the characters made it all that much more tense. Just absolutely loving this series!
These are my top 10 reads of the year and as always, most of them are historical fiction, but I loved them all and would recommend them to anyone!
Theophilus by Lewis Ben Smith is the person to whom the Gospel of Luke and The Book of Acts is addressed to in the Bible and not much is known about him. The author, however, did a magnificent job in taking this character and building this story around him that coincides with the biblical narrative.
A Feast of Sorrow by Crystal King: This book mainly centers on the life of Marcus Gavius Apicius whose recipes were written down, but according to the author's notes, no cookbook survived but some of his recipes did survive in the writings of other historical figures. Apicius was a very wealthy Roman citizen whose passion for cooking and good food sees him spend a great deal of money to buy a slave named Thrasius to be his cook. His dream is to be the gastronomic advisor to Caesar himself.
Regarding Tiberius by Helena Mithrtdates Kleopatra is the novelization of a series of ancient scrolls recently discovered in the ruins of famed Roman commander Scipio Africanus' seaside villa (near Naples, Italy). Written in the First Century by a young woman of Persian and Ethiopian ancestry, Helena Mithridates Kleopatra, they comprise an account of how her life and destiny were forever altered by her chance meeting with Tiberius, the son of a prominent Roman senator.
Infinte by Jeremy Robinson- Earth is no longer habitable and a crew of 50 scientists and engineers aboard a spacecraft head to a new planet that will hopefully be hospitable. After ten years in a failed cryogenic bed--body asleep, mind awake--William Chanokh's torture comes to an end as the fog clears, the hatch opens, and his friend and fellow hacker, Tom, greets him...by stabbing a screwdriver into his heart.
This is one of my favorite authors, and this book was awesome!
Bread of Angels by Tessa Afshar- quickly becoming a favorite author. This one takes the character of Lydia from the Book of Acts in the Bible and tells her story while staying true to the biblical account.
Eternal Darkness by Tom Deady- I just discovered this author this year when I read his book, Haven. I enjoyed it so much that I got this one, which is a coming of age story about vampires, and enjoyed it even more. He will also be writing a sequel to it. Lots of fun.
The Last Child by Jon Hart- I loved this coming of age, mystery!
Don't get me wrong though...this book is dark, but the characterization is excellent, especially of the main character, Johnny. This kid carries a heavy burden, with his twin sister having disappeared a year before, his father leaving, and his mother- who is a ghost of her former self. A sequel is supposed to be out next year, and I am looking forward to it!
Counted with the Stars by Connilyn Cossette - Set during the time of the Great Exodus of the Hebrews from Egypt and follows a slave girl, Kiya, who escapes the bonds of slavery and joins the Hebrews as they flee.
The whole 3 book series was excellent!
Puzzle Master by T.J. McKenna: It' s the year 2022 and all religion has been banned and every sort of vice is condoned. Enter a history professor, Cephas, who not only loves puzzles, but is known as the Cult Hunter...famous for breaking the codes that leads the government to track down "hidden Christians". Now in order to stop them once and for all, Cephas is given the chance to go back in time to prove, once and for all, that Jesus was not the Messiah and did not come back from the dead.
Mysterious Kemet by S.R. Anand- is a collection of 5 novelettes set during the times of Imhotep, Nefertiti, Hatshepsut, Intef the Third, and Ankhtifi. Tempered in the fire of greed, revenge, lust, and ambition, this collection tells the following five riveting tales from Ancient Egypt.
I think this is the first time I had a collection as one of my top 10, but I really enjoyed this one!
My honorable mention is one that I have read before, and re-read this year, but I can't say enough about this series. The Voice in the Wind series by Francine Rivers will always be in the top 10 books of all time for me. I always come away a changed person from reading it. It is Christian fiction and many people would find it "preachy", but it comes with my highest recommendation!
So that's it! Hope everyone has a fantastic New Year full of new discoveries in books and authors!
My 2018 TBR is slowly but surely filling up thanks to all of the sales that Audible is having. Any time I can get a book for less than the cost of a credit, I consider it a good price. So, today I went through my wish-list picking off a few titles that appealed.
Coffee books aren't my thing and I've been staying away from overtly political books recently but this sounded like a wonderful book. Many of these pictures are ones you've likely seen before (Obama comforting a crying baby after the baby had been held by the First Lady, a young black boy touching Obama's hair to see if it was like his own, Obama's hand as he touches a toddler's face, etc.). Here is what is being called a "visual biography" of the Obama presidency. From some of the most famous (Obama and staff watching the Bin Laden raid) to some very private moments of the First Family, etc. it's a great book.
The book is mostly pictures. Souza lets the visuals speak for him with occasional pages of text. Only a few select pictures get the text treatment and it's not surprising what gets a write-up (Bin Laden raid). The photos are gorgeous. I'm no expert and as I mentioned coffee table books aren't really my style but until the memoirs of each of Barack and Michelle Obama are released this book will have to do for now.
It's a little hard for me to rate since I don't look at too many books like this and some of the images are a bit painful (we have all of it, including the 2016 election and the aftermath) for me. I suppose if I had to nitpick I'd say I wish that there were some explanations for some of the lesser known pictures. I adore the pictures and video where then President and First Lady Obama had been greeting people and a screaming baby held by Mrs. Obama was passed to the President...and the baby promptly stopped crying. There are words from media or others who were there but I would have liked to have known what Souza had to say (if he had anything to say at all).
Overall, though, I'm glad I picked it up and was reminded of what we had not all that long ago. However, it's not a book I'd want to buy, but if you're a historian or like photography or want to see the Obama administration through the eyes of the photographer, this was a great read. I personally wouldn't buy it but for the right individual it would make an excellent Christmas or other gift. It's quite hefty though (Amazon says it's about 5.5 pounds) and made packing my bag difficult since it's a big book. Library or flip through it at the bookstore.