I had planned on writing out my reading plans for February last week. Then the flu decided to rear its ugly head and tear through my house like my four olds tore threw Christmas presents. Of course the one time a year I happen to get sick also happens to be the time the other adult in my house decided to have dental work done. If I'm praying to the porcelain god and he's delirious from the pain medication, who exactly is watching our children? A Kindle and some Legos watched my oldest. Twin B was worshiping next to me. Twin A was hanging out outside of the bathroom door crying because we put her twin in quarantine. Where's a grandma when you need one?
Anyway enough about my problems. Let's talk about my books! I am off to a great start this year. My personal reading goal for the year is 75. That's a bit under last year's goal of 175 but last year I was at home all day, every day with my kids until I decided to start working again in December. I've also recently become part of a crusade to get a referendum passed so my children can go to school in a building that doesn't have condemned classrooms and fungal issues. I've been spending a lot of my spare time consuming massive amounts of wine after explaining to people why they should care about the future of their children's education. Apparently around here we are suppose to care more about the future of old bricks and concrete than the flesh and blood and brains inside said bricks and concrete. Ugh.
Seriously, I ramble. I can't help it. Those of you who take the time out of your day to stop and read this are the closest thing I get to adult interaction sometimes. I work at an elementary school. Sure there are adults there but who has time to talk to them?
Anyway. Really this time, I'm going to tell you what I want to read in February.
At the beginning of the month I wanted to finish Martyr by Rory Clements. By the time I've gotten around to writing this post, I've finished. It checks of one of my Monopoly spaces.
-Side note: Over at Goodreads, I'm a member of a Historical Mysteries group. For 2017 we are playing Historical Mystery Monopoly. Want to join us? Come on over!
This month I also desperately want to finish Mary Queen of Scotland and The Isles by Margaret George. I have been reading this book since the end of August 2016. It's not that I don't like George's work. I loved her novel about Henry VIII. It's just that I have such a hard time with Mary, Queen of Scots. She is just not very bright. I spend a lot of time wanting to throw my books. It's a pretty big book so I should probably avoid throwing it.
Carrying on with the theme of finishing things, I am also looking to finish Crown of Blood: The Deadly Inheritance of Lady Jane Grey by Nicola Tallis. So far it is excellent. At times, I have to remind myself I'm reading non-fiction. I'm pleasantly surprised by the author who is said to have honed her craft at the feet of Alison Weir.
Finally, I want to finish The Man in the Queue by Josephine Tey and The Fairy-Tale Detectives by Michael Buckley.
Hopefully by the time I am done finishing books I will have time for some new books.
Some of those books I hope to read include:
The Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters (my next Monopoly square)
The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith
A Perilous Undertaking by Deana Raybourn
The Flame Bearer by Bernard Cornwell
Thus far, I've been talking about books I already own that I need to read. As much as I want to focus on that, there are quite a few books out there that I very much want to get and read this year. These aren't new releases, rather books I just haven't gotten to yet. Some are from legends in their respective fields, some are from fave authors, and some just seem nifty.
Just recently, I read Langan's The Fisherman, and was quite fond. Though I liked the book as a whole, the centerpiece story-within-a-story just floored me. As well, Langan's "Red Death" riff that I read in a Poe-inspired anthology was fantastic. As such,I want to get into more of his shorter works.
I read two of Kay's novels last year, and adored them. So I'm going to pick up at least this one in '17, possibly another as well.
Hobb is well-known and loved in the fantasy scene, and this is the first book in the trilogy that launched her over-arching world. I have a love-hate relationship with high fantasy, but this just sounds fun.
I am a massive fan of Gaiman, have been since reading American Gods far too many years ago. Also, I dig pop-cult essays a la Hornby and Vowell. So this is a no-brainer.
I dig books about books, and stories of near-success are often more fascinating than either pure success or failure. And, I like history.
I love movies, how they're made, who makes them, the whole shebang. Also, I like exploring unfamiliar cultures. Mix two strong personalities with long, interesting careers, post-war economics and fears, and various technical and creative challenges... Dude, I am so there.
Like many people, I read and loved the Harry Potter series. Combine that with the fact that I am a long-time mystery fan, especially P.I. novels, as well as the general praise heaped upon this series, and it's surprising I haven't read this yet. That changes this year.
Book: The Cuckoo’s Calling
Author: Robert Galbraith/J.K. Rowling
Summary: After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to just one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man. You may think you know detectives, but you’ve never met one quite like Strike. You may think you know about the wealthy and famous, but you’ve never seen them under an investigation like this. Introducing Cormoran Strike, this is the acclaimed first crime novel by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. - Little, Brown and Company, 2013.