February Book Haul

February 2018 YA Book Haul

February may be the shortest month, but with all of the arctic temperatures and blizzards we’ve been experiencing here in the Hudson Valley, it felt interminable! Those wintry feelings probably have a large part to do with my amazing book haul for this month, yay for silver linings!

There are three categories of books that joined my shelves this past month, new YA releases, older Fantasy books I’ve been meaning to read, and research books for my novel-in-progress. Hopefully I’ll be able to tuck in to at least a few of these in March…

Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews

I’ve been meaning to check out this paranormal fantasy series ever since I devoured Karen Marie Moning’s Fever books when I was visiting family in Dublin, because it’s often recommended as a follow up. I started Magic Bites, and so far haven’t really connected to the main character as much as I would have hoped, but a lot of readers seem to say her voice improves in later volumes, so we shall see…

Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor

I learned about Nnedi Okorafor’s work on a recent 88 Cups of Tea podcast episode (if you haven’t listened to this, it’s one of my all time favs! Yin Chang, the host is a fantastic interviewer, she really gets in to the nitty gritty with some brilliant YA authors, definitely check it out). Nnedi’s personal story, as well as how she spoke about her writing process led me to grab a copy of her book, Akata Witch, which has been delightfully described as Nigeria + Harry Potter + Murder Mystery, yes please!

The Collected Tales of Nikolai Gogol translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky

Often referred to as the Russian Charles Dickens, Nikolai Gogol was a master storyteller in the 19th century, revered for his ability to satirize the dark underbelly of Imperialist Russia. My sister (the other half of Gathered Nettles) gifted me this collection for Christmas, to inspire my novel-in-progress.

Beyond the Woods edited by Paula Guran

A super intriguing collection of retold fairy tales from an array of contemporary fantasy authors. Another brilliant gift from the sis to add to my research/inspiration TBR.

The Magic Words by Cheryl B. Klein

I first heard about this book on one of the ‘writing YA’ podcasts I follow. A longtime YA and Children’s book editor, Cheryl B. Klein explains the ins and out of this complex world, and offers advice for plotting and planning a successful story arc.

Bygone Badass Broads by Mackenzi Lee

We’ve long been a fan of Mackenzi Lee’s vibrant presence on social media, and of course her acclaimed novel, The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue. Plus, since I’m a total history nerd, when I heard about her new book, about 52 women whose historical impact was lost to time, I had to get myself a copy. Beautifully illustrated, and cleverly written, I can see this book being the source of inspiration for many creative projects to come…

The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton

I am so excited to read this story! From one of the founders of the nonprofit, ‘We Need Diverse Books,’ this book takes place in a fantasy world inspired by New Orleans, where belles have the power to manipulate beauty. Clayton references themes of femininity and race, as well as slavery in this complex narrative.

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

I’m such a fan of any book where fairy tales bleed in to the real, mundane world. Described as a dark fantasy where the heroine rescues herself, I’m looking forward to slipping in to the world of the Hinterland.

Unearthed by Amie Kaufman and Meagen Spooner

Pitched as Indiana Jones in Space, I bought a copy of this book the week it came out. I don’t often venture in to the world of Sci Fi, since my heart is split fairly evenly between Historical Fiction and Fantasy, but for these Lara Croft: Tomb raider / Star Wars vibes, I’m making an exception!


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