Monday, September 03, 2018

What I Read This Summer

I missed listing a few of the books I managed to read this summer, so here goes.

Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? by Alyssa Mastromonaco

My interest in politics, while still a bit shallow, is growing, so this was a nice entry way book.  Mastromonaco is a regular on the various Pod Save America podcasts, and this book is a short and sweet autobiography about her political life, written as a sort of rubric for young women up and coming in politics.

I won't say it's a deep read, but it's a good read in the summer sun.  The stories are mostly humorous, the advice makes sense, and there is nothing earthshaking (at least to me).  I liked it, and it will go on my shelf in my small but growing set of political books.

The Girl in the Green Silk Gown by Seanan McGuire

This is the second of the Ghostroads series, really the first official book in the series (the first one, Sparrow Hill Road, is technically a part of her InCryptids books -- another series I intend to read).  Rose is still having trouble in her afterlife, and has to call on old friends and old enemies for help.  Saying anything about it will spoil it (and I know how some people feel about spoilers) so I will just say how much I loved this book and how much I'm looking forward to the next one (Come on, Seanan, you don't need to sleep!)  I enjoy the world and its careful consistency, and how there is still lots our main character doesn't know.  I am just enthused.  Read it.  Buy copies for gifts.

Master of None by Sonya Bateman

Djinn are, in my opinion, a rich vein for the paranormal/urban fantasy writer.  I can think of only one other series where they show up.  Djinn are the magic in this particular (and all too short) series (there's only 1 more book).

Now, I can't say this was a fantastic book, but it is a book true to the tropes of this niche genre.  We have the smart ass main character, Gavyn Donatti, all the people he loves or has damaged, the trouble he's in, and his basic goodness.  We have the strange magical individual who comes into his life and kicks over everything. He's thrown into impossible situations, discovers impossible things about himself, and decides that's where his life will go.  He deals with people who start out either not liking him or outright hating him, and then reverse. We have a lot of near torture porn to give grimdarkness to the world. No big surprises.

But it's a rollicking ride.  It's fun.  It's a little thin on the  characterization, and there isn't much emotional life in our protagonist.  Oh, Donatti has feelings, but we don't get much insight into them, or into anyone else's for that matter.  There isn't much "why".  That's the only thing that bothered me while I read.  I stayed up late reading this, which is a good sign.  I enjoyed it.  What more can I say?  How much I will wish there were more books will depend on how the second book goes.

Summer is nearly over, and I have an ambitious reading list for the fall, which I'm not likely to complete, but I'll deliver my book reports as I knock 'em down.