Sunday, January 24, 2016

Fortnightly Update #2: Urban Fantasy Bargains and an Unexpected Gesture

These past two weeks have gone by really fast- January 11th was my mom's birthday, and from there things at our place got more interesting than usual. During the week, it snowed a couple inches, coating everything in sight in the fluffy white stuff, save a weird puddle spot on our front sidewalk. Since our house was built (and built well) in 1903, we figured it had something to do with the water line from the street, but a man from the city water department was just as puzzled as we were over it. It seems we'll have to wait until spring and see if it's an issue with our sprinkler system (which is supposedly self-draining, but we have super hard mineral water) or we have some sort of aquifer below our feet- the ground here has a bedrock foundation, which we've heard from neighbors can cause issues if you over-water. If anything, we deprive our poor lawn...

On the same day we were having the puddle examined, someone drove into Wesley Crusher (my mom's blue pickup) but luckily he was mostly unscathed. As he was built the same year as I was born (1992), he isn't an eco-friendly fiberglass, but instead he's metal (which is why he's a Crusher). Whomever ran into him left a note with their details, but also a plastic mirror cover from their car. I think they may have gotten more crushed by Wesley than he was by them.

Recent Acquisitions (or the Piling of the-Piles):

the-invisible-pile Additions (including Urban Fantasy Bargains):

Please be as good as your cover looks, book! I hope this one isn't like Urban Shaman, which left a stale taste in my mouth after I finished it last year. I know I'm asking a lot of this book with that cover quip, but seriously- this is one of the best urban fantasy covers I've seen!

Moon Called (Mercy Thompson #1) by Patricia Briggs
I was warned by someone's review of this (I wish I remember whose) that the cover of this book was pretty deceiving/off-key with the tone of the book. I hope that's the case, because I've kind of griped about modesty while being badass in other books (not really about modesty as much as practicality- do you really want a boob injury/have it hanging out while fighting villains? I don't.). Regardless of the cover, I've heard good things about this book; and when Moon Called and Skinwalker went on sale for $1.99 for the Kindle version, I didn't hesitate to click buy.

Finished These Books:

Imago (Xenogenesis #3) by Octavia E. Butler
This may be the last book in the series, but the world continues to develop and be expanded. In other words, lots of detail, but in this book's case I find it a plus.

Assassin's Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy #1) by Robin Hobb (links to my review)
I didn't expect to like it so much! It kind of took me by surprise, and I was also surprised I even finished it, given I've had trouble finishing my last few straight up fantasy reads.

The Custodian of Marvels (Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire #3) by Rod Duncan
This is the best book I've read so far this year- and the only 5 Star rating I've ever given to a review copy. I hope my review turns out just as exceptional as I found the book!

Adulthood Rites (Xenogenesis #2) by Octavia E. Butler (links to my review)
A marked improvement from the first book, which, in hindsight, feels like a prequel. I also love the cover- makes me wish I had a physical copy.

In the Blogosphere:

Interesting... all the reviews I liked in the past two weeks have been of books the reviewers rated 5 Stars. Maybe I'm hoping it'll rub off on me?

Laura W @ Blue Eye Books reviews Meritropolis by Joel Ohman, a young adult dystopian- I love the cover!

Erin @ The Paperback Stash reviews Magic Bites (Kate Daniels #1) by Ilona Andrews, the first book in an urban fantasy series I devoured in 2014.

Laura @ Boats Against the Current reviews The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson, the first book in the Stormlight Archive, which has become one of my favorites.

Tammy @ Books, Bones, and Buffy reviews The Drowning Eyes by Emily Foster, a fantasy novella with a diverse cast of characters that quickly went on my wishlist.

Heather Duff @ Random Redheaded Ramblings reviews The End of the World Running Club by Adrian J. Walker (slightly ironic author name- J. Walker), a book which is being re-published by a traditional publisher. I bought an ebook copy of the book when it was still self-published because I love the old cover.

Soudha @ Of Stacks and Cups reveals How to Read More- which is always needed for those of us with never-ending TBR piles.

Rachel @ A Perfection Called Books posts about Blogging Your Own Way, which is a story I think a lot of bloggers can relate to and/or promote.

And, last but not least, Rachelle @ Fortified By Books joins in on the Feel the Paper Love February challenge I started. I had anticipated no one else would be interested, but I guess I was wrong.

In My Life (An Unexpected Gesture):

Having grown up in Montana, I hate to gripe about snow shovelling, especially considering the snow we have in Idaho really doesn't compare. However, last week, we had an unusual type of snow (yes, snow has types) that was really not made to be shoveled. The best description of it would be a thick, fluffy on top snow with slushy snow that had frozen overnight to the sidewalk (ours is rather porous looking, so it's really hard to scrape).

Anyway, I was scraping away so the snow/ice wouldn't make pedestrians slip in front of our house and sue us, when along comes the neighbor's snow removal service man. I watch him while I'm pathetically huffing and puffing with my shovel- he has a snow blower that makes quick work of the neighbor's snow issue. I mentally berate myself for envying the man and continue to shovel when I hear him come up behind me, snow blower on. I scurry out of the way, and instead of turning off his snow blower and going on his merry way back to his truck, he leaves it on- blowing my sidewalks completely clear of the dreaded snow/slush/ice, and making a path through my retired neighbors' sidewalks as well. Before I regain my stamina to run after him and kiss his boots, he drives off.

It's people like that who restore my faith in humanity. Technically, it would've been better business for him to come up and say, I'll charge you half price this time to do the main sidewalk (an offer that, despite my frugality, I would've likely taken). But instead he simply did it free of charge, not even lingering around so I could sing his praises. I live in a city filled with very nice people.

I hope those on the East Coast have some Unexpected Gestures heading their way! 


  1. Thanks so much for the shoutout, Litha!

    I have to say, the cover of The Assassin's Apprentice is really cool (and I can't resist a story about assassins!). I'll definitely be checking that one out sometime!

    Laura @BlueEyeBooks

    1. You're welcome!
      This one takes a while to get to the 'Assassin' bit, but I enjoyed it despite that- it wasn't that slow of a read. (All the fantasy books I tried and quit on before it were frustratingly slow, so that was a major plus).
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Laura!
      ~Litha Nelle

  2. Thanks for mentioning my blog. I'm going to see if I can round up a few more people to join us :)

    1. Well, thanks for joining! I try not to be overbearing with self-promo stuff, but I will be likely pushing the line on that policy this week. (If I don't procrastinate too much...).
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Rachelle!
      ~Litha Nelle

  3. The Mercy covers are definitely deceiving, don't worry :) She's a mechanic, so she's a very practical kind of badass lol

    I'm glad you enjoyed Robin Hobb!

    1. Yeah, I just finished that book, actually! I enjoyed her character, and there were no boob injuries, so I'm pleased. ;)
      I still don't know why I waited so long with the Robin Hobb books. I should've started with those and built up to ASoIaF.
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Kritika!
      ~Litha Nelle

  4. The Mercy series is great. The first one wasn't my favourite tbh - but it is a set up book and first in series but it really does grow and expand and Mercy is a great character.
    Lynn :D

    1. Oh, I'm glad you mentioned that- I finished reading the first one last night and wasn't too wowed by it, but I thought it was good. I'll have to try the next one whenever I find it on sale somewhere.
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Lynn!
      ~Litha Nelle


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