I realize I missed a couple weeks, but since it’s a bonkers time at work and a bonkers time at home with the upcoming move, I’m just going to be a hot mess for a while. A hot mess who is ravenously devouring books as a coping mechanism because I am deeply uncomfortable being uncomfortable. I sometimes wish I were a person who found change invigorating but mostly I’m just looking forward to the afterward. I like settling in and getting comfortable again, so the idea of a new space is appealing. It’s just the process of getting there that sucks. Anyway. I read some books. I’ll tell you about them. And then I’ll go back to vibrating with anxiety. I believe I’m currently emitting a low level hum.
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston: I indulged in this book via audio, and it was very cute. Definitely a departure from Red, White & Royal Blue (review) and so much of a departure it feels weird to attempt to compare the two. August has spent her life as her mother’s research assistant, attempting to solve the cold case of her uncle’s disappearance. She never quite feels at home until she moves into an apartment in Brooklyn above a Popeye’s Chicken with an eclectic assortment of roommates. While spilling her coffee and having a heck of a time on the Q Train (I say that like I know a single thing about the NYC Subway system. I’ve never even been to New York) August meets an extremely cute girl. Only to discover (thanks to her stellar detective skills) that her new crush is actually somehow from the 1970s. Like… Wibbly wobbly, timey wimey style. It’s an interesting blend of sci/fi, love story, and LGBT found families. All in all, it’s really quite adorable. Not what I’d been expecting, but still a lot of fun.
The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morganthaler: This book had so many elements that I often love in a rom-com. We’ve got a grumpy diner owner (check) in a small town (check) in Alaska who resents tourists falling head over heels for a quirky bookish tourist (checkity check). Like, that should all be extremely charming. Parts of it were really great, but other parts of it just felt a little… grating. Diner guy, Graham, was more of a dick than strictly necessary and I didn’t feel like he had a complicated enough back story to truly carry it off. And the girl, Zoey, seemed a bit flat. The author was definitely going for a Zooey Deschanel vibe (name choice wasn’t super subtle there) but it didn’t quite all come together. Though, in spite of my lukewarm feelings, I read the whole thing and stayed up too late doing it. Props for extreme readability if nothing else. I guess I was hoping for a big steamy payoff for the endless sexual tension and big drama, but all I got was closed doors. Which is FINE if that’s your thing. And it would have been fine if I’d liked the characters a little better, but it was all a little nebulous and confusing, particularly the rich friend. The best character in the book was clearly the dog, though, to be fair, he was an exceptional canine. Close second was the moose. Maybe next time, fewer angsty humans, more quirky animals. I’d be into that.
Patternmaster by Octavia Butler- So, I know the origin story behind the Patternists and I know the origin story behind the Clayarks but honestly WTF. This book is bonkers and very much in line with the bleak futurism Butler specializes in. Still. The entire world reduced to an alien parasite plagued hybrid species and a network of telepaths who have resorted to slavery via mental manipulation isn’t the most jovial of reading. Although, now that I think about it, Clay’s Ark (review) had some fascinating similarities with Ice Planet Barbarians (symbionts, extreme mating urges, production of hybrid species, etc.) I wonder if Ruby Dixon was influenced by Butler or if this sort of thing is common in sci/fi and I just haven’t read enough alien books.
That is all the bandwidth I’ve got for you today, folks. One day, possibly months from now, I will be less of a mess. In the meantime, I’m just going to keep on keeping on.
If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission. Links in the post above direct to Amazon, but if you’re interested and in a position to do so, please consider making a purchase from a local independent bookstore. IndieBound and Bookshop make it easy to do just that without having to leave your home!