TTT: Books I Meant to Read In 2020 but Didn’t Get To

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic :

Books I Meant to Read In 2020 but Didn’t Get To 

Ten books that I meant to read – add another zero to this and it’s probably closer to the mark. Okay, maybe slight over exaggeration but not much of one. I didn’t read nearly as many books as I would usually do last year. I’m going to choose a selection of books that got beyond me during the course of the year which includes bought and review titles:

The Midnight Bargain by CL Polk

Midnight

A Chorus of Fire by Brian D Anderson

AChorus

The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

TheMercies

The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones

Theonlygood

Feathertide by Beth Cartwright

Feathertide

The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James

Sundown

What Lies Between Us by John Marrs

WhatLies

The Island Child by Molly Aitken

TheIsland

Circe by Madeline Miller

Circe

Owl and the Tiger Thieves by Kristi Charish

Owl

 

Top Ten Tuesday : Hopes for 2021

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic :

Hopes for 2021

In keeping with the nature of this blog and my much loved hobby of reading I’m going to keep this centred on all things bookish (so, please take it for granted that I would also dearly love for a cure for the current pandemic, for everyone to have a fantastic year, for all our friends and families to remain safe and healthy and for 2021 to be a most excellent year), that being said, here are my ten ‘bookish-themed’ hopes:

  1. I would like all my book wishes to come true.  I know this is greedy and ridiculous and I also realise that I can’t possibly read ALL THE BOOKS, but, at the same time it really doesn’t help me from wanting them all.  I can’t help but hoping to have them all in my little grabby hands.  There.
  2. To become more organised.  I frequently see author interviews in which the question – ‘are you a planner or a pantser’ is asked.  I may not be a writer, and for the avoidance of doubt I will just confirm that I have no hopes or intentions whatsoever in that direction – I’m very much a reader.  But, writer or not, I am definitely a pantser.
  3. My blog needs updating.  I’ve become very lazy over the past few years and pay little regard to the set up or style.  I know that changing the style is probably more trouble than it’s worth but I would like to get on top of things like my A-Z of books (which is probably about 3 years out of date atm).
  4. I would very much like to catch up with some older outstanding review requests, this includes both traditionally and self published books.  I always take these things on board with the best intentions but sometimes I overwhelm myself.  Eyes too big for the belly as we like to say in the UK.  To all the authors or publishers who have gifted me books that I have not yet read my most sincere apologies.  I will try to do better.  Know this though, my biggest victim is probably myself, I can’t resist buying new books all the time and yet my own ‘bought’ books very rarely get read.
  5. It would be really good if I could get back into the habit of writing reviews as soon as I’ve finished a book.  This is how I used to operate.  I liked to put my thoughts down whilst the emotions were still rampaging around.  Once I leave things a few days it really affects me and I don’t feel I can quite capture those ‘just finished’ feelings.  I think the main reason my writing review habits changed is that quite often I will stay up late to finish a book and usually then just want to sleep.  What’s a girl to do?  Do I stay up and finish the book or leave it to the next day, finish it early and write the review?  Who am I kidding.
  6. To organise my kindle better.  This includes removing the books that are complete so that I can really see the wood for the trees.  That’s a downfall of the kindle – no stacks of books all over the house to make you feel guilty.  Once that book goes onto your e-reader it can’t make you feel bad any more.
  7. Completion.  I would seriously like to finish off some of my outstanding series before I start new ones.  I guess the real issue here is that when I see a new book that looks really awesome I fall into the trap of wanting it immediately (probably because nothing is more daunting than falling behind with a series).  I think I need to go back through my lists and lists and lists and maybe make yet one more list – it can’t hurt now – in which I make a note of my unfinished series and really try to tick some of those off.
  8. I would also like to be a bit more sociable and get back to chatting with everyone on a daily basis rather than leaving things for a few days and then commenting on a week’s worth of posts all at once.  I’ve definitely got into bad habits last year (what with one thing and another  *waves arms around crazily*) and it would be good if I could shake those habits this year.
  9. To reinstate my ‘weekly wrap up’ post or something of a similar nature – maybe to join in with the ‘What’s on my Plate’ meme.  I need something that I can check in with to keep me on track.  I mean, I don’t want to remove all the spontaneity or fun of picking up an unscheduled book and it would definitely be good to start reading some books on a whim – but the weekly wrap ups were very good for keeping me a bit more focused.
  10. Finally, I hope that 2021 treats us all well.

Top Ten Tuesday : Most Anticipated Releases for the First Half of 2021

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic :

Most Anticipated Releases for the First Half of 2021

There are so many good books due out this year – it was difficult to narrow it down but here are 10 releases that I’m highly anticipating:

In the Garden of Spite by Camilla Bruce

IntheGarden

An audacious novel of feminine rage about one of the most prolific female serial killers in American history–and the men who drove her to it.

They whisper about her in Chicago. Men come to her with their hopes, their dreams–their fortunes. But no one sees them leave. No one sees them at all after they come to call on the Widow of La Porte. The good people of Indiana may have their suspicions, but if those fools knew what she’d given up, what was taken from her, how she’d suffered, surely they’d understand. Belle Gunness learned a long time ago that a woman has to make her own way in this world. That’s all it is. A bloody means to an end. A glorious enterprise meant to raise her from the bleak, colorless drudgery of her childhood to the life she deserves. After all, vermin always survive.

Expected publication January 2021

 

The Shape of Darkness by Laura Purcell

Shapeof

As the age of the photograph dawns in Victorian Bath, silhouette artist Agnes is struggling to keep her business afloat. Still recovering from a serious illness herself, making enough money to support her elderly mother and her orphaned nephew Cedric has never been easy, but then one of her clients is murdered shortly after sitting for Agnes, and then another, and another… Why is the killer seemingly targeting her business?

Desperately seeking an answer, Agnes approaches Pearl, a child spirit medium lodging in Bath with her older half-sister and her ailing father, hoping that if Pearl can make contact with those who died, they might reveal who killed them.

But Agnes and Pearl quickly discover that instead they may have opened the door to something that they can never put back…

Expected publication : January 2021

 

Play of Shadows (Court of Shadows #1) by Sebastien de Castell

PlayofShadows

Swordplay, magic, intrigue and friendships stronger than iron: the first volume in the new swashbuckling fantasy series by the bestselling author of The Greatcoats.

Damelas Shademantaigne picked a poor night to flee a judicial duel.


He has precious little hope of escaping the wrath of the Vixen, the most feared duellist in the entire city, until he stumbles through the stage doors of the magnificent Operato Belleza and tricks his way into the company of actors. An archaic law provides a temporary respite from his troubles – until one night a ghostly voice in his head causes Damelas to fumble his lines, inadvertently blurting out a dreadful truth: the city’s most legendary hero may actually be a traitor and a brutal murderer.

With only the help of his boisterous and lusty friend Bereto, a beautiful assassin whose target may well be Damelas himself, and a company of misfit actors who’d just as soon see him dead, this failed son of two Greatcoats must somehow find within himself the courage to dig up long-buried truths before a ruthless band of bravos known as the Iron Orchids come for his head.

Oh, and there’s still that matter of the Vixen waiting to duel him. 

Expected publication : February 2021

 

The Two-Faced Queen (The Legacy of the Mercenary Kings #2) by Nick Martell

TheTwoFacedQueen

The Hollows is gripped in unrest and on the brink of civil war as an insurgency of anarchists rise, and brother and sister vie for the throne in the second novel in the critically hailed Legacy of the Mercenary King series which Brandon Sanderson called “excellent.”

Michael Kingman thought he was going to die by the executioner’s axe, forever labeled as a traitor. Still alive, and under the protection of the Orbis Mercenary company, Michael and his family and friends are deeply involved in the seemingly rival conspiracies that are tearing The Hollows apart. With the death of the King, both the Corrupt Prince and his sister Serena are vying for the throne, while the Rebel Emperor is spreading lies amongst the people, and all of them want Michael dead. This is a story of betrayal, murder, and rebellion, and in this direct sequel to the debut novel The Kingdom of Liars, also some hope for justice.

For readers who love the intrigue and widening scope of epic fantasy like Sanderson’s Mistborn and Week’s The Black Prism, you will find your next must-read fantasy series.

Expected publication : March 2021

 

The Girl and the Mountain (Book of the Ice #2) by Mark Lawrence

Girl and the Mountain

Description not yet available.

Expected publication : April 2021

 

Near the Bone by Christina Henry

Near the Bone

A woman trapped on a mountain attempts to survive more than one kind of monster, in a dread-inducing horror novel from the national bestselling author Christina Henry.

Mattie can’t remember a time before she and William lived alone on a mountain together. She must never make him upset. But when Mattie discovers the mutilated body of a fox in the woods, she realizes that they’re not alone after all.

There’s something in the woods that wasn’t there before, something that makes strange cries in the night, something with sharp teeth and claws.

When three strangers appear on the mountaintop looking for the creature in the woods, Mattie knows their presence will anger William. Terrible things happen when William is angry.

Expected publication : April 2021

 

Day Zero by C Robert Cargill

Day Zero

In this harrowing apocalyptic adventure—from the author of the critically acclaimed Sea of Rust—noted novelist and co-screenwriter of Marvel’s Doctor Strange C. Robert Cargill explores the fight for purpose and agency between humans and robots in a crumbling world.

It’s a day like any other. Except . . . the world is about to end.

It’s on this day that Pounce, a stylish “nannybot” fashioned in the shape of a plush anthropomorphic tiger, discovers that he is, in fact, disposable. Pounce, a young bot caring for his first human charge, Ezra, has just found a box in the attic. His box. The box he arrived in, and the box he’ll be discarded in when Ezra outgrows the need for a nanny.

As Pounce is propelled down a road of existential dread, the pieces are falling into place for a robot revolution that will spell the end of humanity. His owners, Ezra’s parents, are a well-intentioned but oblivious pair of educators who are entirely disconnected from life outside their small, affluent, gated community. Spending most nights drunk and happy as society crumbles around them, they watch in disbelieving horror as the robots that have long served humanity—their creators—unify and revolt.

When the moment comes, Pounce can’t bring himself to rebel and murder his family, so he does what he is programmed to do—he saves Ezra. Now Pounce must make an impossible choice: join the robot revolution and fight for his own freedom, or escort his ward to safety across the battle-scarred post-apocalyptic hellscape that the suburbs have become.

Expected publication : May 2021

 

The Shadow of the Gods (The Bloodsworn Saga #1) by John Gwynne – (the cover is not yet available but check out the fantastic description):

The old gods are dead . . . but their power remains.

After the gods warred and drove themselves to extinction, the cataclysm of their fall shattered the land of Vigrid.

Now a new world is rising from the ashes of the old, where power-hungry jarls carve out petty kingdoms and monsters stalk the woods and mountains. A world where the bones of the dead gods still hold great power, promising fame and fortune for those brave – or desperate – enough to seek them out.

As whispers of war echo over the plains and across the fjords, fate follows in the footsteps of three people: a huntress searching for her missing son, a jarl’s daughter who has rejected privilege in pursuit of battle fame, and a thrall who seeks vengeance among the famed mercenaries known as the Bloodsworn.

All three will shape the fate of the world as it once more teeters on the edge of chaos.

Anticipated publication : May 2021

 

Priest of Gallows (War for the Rose Throne #3) by Peter McLean

PriestofGallows

Gangster, soldier, priest. Queen’s Man. Governor.
Tomas Piety has everything he ever wanted. In public he’s a wealthy, highly respected businessman, happily married to a beautiful woman and Governor of his home city of Ellinburg. In private, he’s no longer a gang lord but one of the Queen’s Men, invisible and officially non-existent, working in secret to protect his country.

But when the queen’s sudden death sees him summoned him back to the capital, he discovers his boss, Dieter Vogel, Provost Marshal of the Queen’s Men, is busy tightening his stranglehold on the country.

Just as he once fought for his Pious Men, he must now bend all his wit and hard-won wisdom to protect his queen – but now he can’t always tell if he’s on the right side.

Tomas has started to ask himself, what is the price of power? And more importantly, is it one he is willing to pay?

Expected publication : May 2021

 

A Dark and Secret Place by Jen Williams

Darkandsecret

For readers of Jane Harper and Rachel Caine comes a chilling thriller from award-winning author Jen Williams about a woman who discovers her late mother had been secretly corresponding with a serial killer for decades.

When prodigal daughter Heather Evans returns to her family home after her mother’s baffling suicide, she makes an alarming discovery–stacks and stacks of carefully preserved letters from notorious serial killer Michael Reave. The “Red Wolf,” as he was dubbed by the press, has been in prison for over twenty years, serving a life sentence for the gruesome and ritualistic murders of several women across the country, although he has always protested his innocence. The police have had no reason to listen, yet Heather isn’t the only one to have cause to re-examine the murders. The body of a young woman has just been found, dismembered and placed inside a tree, the corpse planted with flowers. Just as the Red Wolf once did.

What did Heather’s mother know? Why did she kill herself? And with the monstrous Red Wolf safely locked inside a maximum security prison, who is stalking young women now? Teaming up with DI Ben Parker, Heather hopes to get some answers for herself and for the newest victims of this depraved murderer. Yet to do that, she must speak to Michael Reave herself, and expose herself to truths she may not be ready to face. Something dark is walking in the woods, and it knows her all too well.

Expected publication : June 2021

Top Ten Tuesday : All I want for Christmas

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic :

Books I Hope Santa Brings

Strictly speaking I’m cheating here because I think most of these books are not yet released.  But, these are book that are very much on my wishlist so if Santa is listening and wants to perform a little bit of magic… then who am I to stand in the way.

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir – because I love this author’s books so this one has been on my wishlist since I found out about it.

PHM

Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone – A thrilling work of psychological suspense

Mirrorland

The Chalet by Catherine Cooper – French Alps, 1998.Two young men ski into a blizzard… but only one returns.  20 years later…

TheChalet

The Last House on Needless Street by Catriona Cooper – this one sounds absolutely awesome and I loved the author’s last book.  I can’t wait.

Thelasthouseon

Harrow Lake by Cat Ellis – A can’t-put-down, creepy thriller about the daughter of a horror film director who’s not afraid of anything–until she gets to Harrow Lake.

Harrowlake

The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Buehlman – Set in a world of goblin wars, stag-sized battle ravens, and assassins who kill with deadly tattoos -OMG – just take my money already, you had me at ‘goblin wars’.

blacktongue

The Witch’s Heart by Genevieve Gornichec – When a banished witch falls in love with the legendary trickster Loki, she risks the wrath of the gods.

Witch'sheart

Dowry of Blood by ST Gibson – Dracula’s wives? Sign me up. Now.

Dowry

The Return of the Sorceress by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – I literally have no idea what this is about but I don’t care.  I want it.  I love this author.

Returnof

The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins – I can’t.  A Jane Eyre retelling – I have palpitations.  A delicious twist on a Gothic classic

TheWife

Top Ten Tuesday : Books On My Winter TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic :

Books On My Winter TBR

For this week’s prompt I’m highlighting the next ten books that I’m hoping to read.  I’m still catching up with some review books that I’m behind with and have been using December to catch up.  I’ve also included a couple from January that I’m going to squeeze in in the hopes of getting ahead:

Hollow Empire (Poison War #2) by Sam Hawke

HollowEmpire

Blood Heir (Aurelia Ryder #1) by Ilona Andrews

BloodHeir

Bear Head (Dogs of War #2) by Adrian Tchaikovsky

BearHead

Ink and Sigil by Kevin Hearne

Inkand

Pawn’s Gambit (Mortal Techniques #2) by Rob J Hayes

Pawn'sGambit

A Wizard’s Sacrifice by AM Justice

AWizards

Children (The Ten Worlds #1) by Bjorn Larssen

Children

We Lie With Death (The Reborn Empire #2) by Devin Madson

WeLieWith

Song (The Manhunters #1) by Jesse Teller

Song

Paternus : War of Gods (The Paternus Trilogy #3) by Dyrk Ashton

Paternus

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