Comfort Reads

I just spent the last few days suffering from stomach flu I received from my loving husband who we think got it from our beautiful children. I’ll spare you the details, but basically it left me in bed and miserable. So when I wasn’t… you know, or sleeping, I had time to read. I found I wasn’t able to focus on anything heavy or detailed. Here’s what I was able to read.

  • Rereads of favorite books. Wild Things by Chloe Neill. A little violence and snark always makes me feel better.
  • Romance novels. Loretta Chase was recently recommended by Rebecca Schinsky at Book Riot so I thought I’d give her a go. I only got into the beginning of The Lion’s Daughter, but it was perfect for a sick day.
  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. I don’t have a category for this. I’ve been told to read this and it didn’t disappoint. The content is fun and adventurous.
  • Comics. Hello Sex Criminals Vol 2. Which is the closest I felt to being frisky at all.

 

What do you like to read when you’re sick (if you feel up to reading)?

Task 13: A Romance: The Siren

Wow. Let me start there. So for task thirteen we were supposed to read a romance. I had a Sarah MacLean all picked out on Oyster, Ten Ways to be Adored When Landing a Lord. I’d read MacLean last year for the first time and her books convinced me not all romance novels were the stuff of my early twenties, silly names for genitals and rapey scenes. You know the ones I’m talking about. And if not her, then one by Tessa Dare, another historical romance author who MacLean herself had recommended.

Then I started thinking. The whole reason for me to do this challenge was to widen my horizons. Why not jump into a romance category that was new to me. So I jumped off the deep end right into BDSM. Whoa. From the title of the post you know I didn’t pick up that one EVERYBODY can name. That one was problematic from what people I actually trust in books were saying. So I listened to those same people I trust and found The Siren by Tiffany Reisz. I am not sure this is a genre or category that I’m going to jump into regularly, but I’m glad I did it. Not all romance is created equal. Not all relationships are either. The word “consent” is crucial here. This is a complex book. For that reason I absolutely adored it. I read a lot of romances back in the day and they were pretty boring. This book isn’t just one thing. It’s going to probably make you uncomfortable. I know there were scenes that made me cringe, but I don’t think that is a bad thing. Nora was pretty great. Wesley. Oh I adored Wesley. Zach? Zach had shades of every romance novel hero ever, but I think Nora rattled him pretty well. And that made it better. He wasn’t as alpha as the trope calls for. Søren? I don’t like him. I’m sorry. But I did think he was interesting. Which I think is more important than liking a character.

This book is not going to be for everyone. It’s not the type of romance novel I’m going to recommend to my mom, but I know a few people who would see the brilliance of it. It was about a range of other emotions just as it was about sexual encounters or even romantic notions. A reviewer on Goodreads said she was “completely not okay with just about everything in it [the book]. And I still loved it.”  I’m not sure I loved it, but she’s pretty close to exactly how I felt. A good way for me to like a book is for it to make me think (or not think, perversely enough) and The Siren did that. I’m still debating on reading the second book to find out what happens to Nora. I’m probably going to wait until I get a little more traction in the #readharder challenge.

Have you read outside your comfort zone before? What happened?

Return from Stars Hollow: October’s reads

So…whatcha doing? Me? I’m back from binge watching all seven seasons of The Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I really should have blogged about it. At least all the literary references. Not only does one of the main characters read a lot (I strained my eyes trying to see the cover of all the books around her), the show always has some pretty awesome pop culture references in their witty dialogue. Oh well, hindsight is 20/20 as they say.  The binge watch really killed my usual reading routine so now I’m trying to rebuild it. Here are some highlights of the books I did manage to read this month.

 

The Serpent of Venice by Christopher Moore. A strong start to the month, TSoV is the sequel to Fool. I had a fun time reading it so that makes it a successful Moore book for me.

Stone Mattress by Margaret Atwood. I’ve stated time and time again, I’m not a short story person, but Atwood tied the first three stories together, and it peaked my interest. But it’s hard to go wrong with Atwood.

The Rules for Scoundrels series by Sarah McLean. The first three at least. The last in the series comes out this month. I used to be a hardcore romance reader back in the day, but then got burned out on them. I can’t say I’ve whole heartedly come back to the genre as a rule, but I really like McLean’s style.

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi. A mom from my son’s school lent this to me as a thank you for suggesting she take her son to the comics shop to get him interested in reading. I meant digest it slowly and ended up devouring it in one sitting. I found it fascinating since I had no idea about the Islamic Revolution. Everyone should read this book.

As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of the Princess Bride by Cary Elwes. My husband and I listened to this one on audiobook (while we played Diablo 3) and were not disappointed. My husband is a huge fan of the movie and had introduced it to me when we started dating so listening to Elwes and most of the surviving cast talk about their experiences was a lot of fun.

The Book of Unknown Americans by Cristina Henriques. I fell so hard for this book. I had checked it out from the library under their Lucky Day program (basically a first come first serve and that you can’t renew for new books that usually have long hold lists), but got caught up in the aforementioned Gilmore Girls marathon and had to take it back. Luckily after the marathon was over I went to the library and there it was back on the Lucky Day shelf. If you want to read about the modern immigrant experience I highly suggest this one.  *I totally lost it at the end of the book.

 

What were your favorite reads of October?