What I’m Reading: September

Fall is upon us! I am under deadline (two of them, to be honest). As such, this will be the speediest monthly reading recap ever!

Here’s what I read in September:

THE QUEEN OF ATTOLIA by Megan Whalen Turner
I enjoyed the first book in this series, THE THIEF, but I loved QoA. I’m sort of at a loss for words… The political intrigue. The war strategies. The nuanced relationship between Gen and his queen, father, Attolia, the Magus… It’s all incredible. And I appreciate Gen as a protagonist even more after this sequel. He is strong and smart and capable and clever, yet also flawed and weak. He has moments where he wallows in self pity. He makes mistakes and stumbles to recover. He feels so. darn. real.  I’ve heard book three, THE KING OF ATTOLIA is even better, and I can’t wait to pick it up. Turner is one heck of a talented writer.

 

TRACKED by Jenny Martin
(In full disclosure, Jenny is a writer friend and agency sibling.) I read a very early version of this book before it sold and then a revised version of the manuscript in September, where I found myself falling in love with it all over again. TRACKED follows Phee Van Zant, an orphan street-racer on the corrupt planet Castra, who gets swept up in the corporate rally circuit and an even bigger revolution. I have many thoughts on this novel, but it’s just too soon to share them. I’m sorry. I realize this is terribly cruel of me, but until closer to release, I’ll just say the true magic of Martin’s story lies in her profoundly creative world-building. Castra feels both familiar and incredibly fresh, and her dynamic cast of characters are impossible to not root for. Put this on your to-be-read lists, people!

 

THE SPECTACULAR NOW by Tim Tharp
I already shared by in-depth thoughts on this contemporary (and the movie adaptation) earlier this month, but in short, this is one of the most honest, gut-wrenching coming-of-age stories I’ve experienced in a long while. Not to mention an incredibly realistic look at high school, alcoholism, first love, and the overwhelming uncertainty that is the looming future. Spectacular, indeed! There’s still two days left to enter to win a paperback copy if you’re interested.

 

THE DREAM THIEVES by Maggie Stiefvater
This one felt different from its predecessor. While THE RAVEN BOYS was alive with mystery and magic—the legend of Glendower, finding Cabeswater, Blue’s doomed first kiss—THE DREAM THIEVES has a less obvious plot. In my opinion, it’s more of a character study. We get deep insight to Ronan and his dreams (which were both dazzling and terrifying), and Cabeswater takes the backseat for most of the novel. Still, Maggie’s writing is like butter. This is another slow-paced but unputdownable novel from her, with gorgeous prose and characters so deftly drawn they feel like neighbors. The tension between Blue, Gansey, and Adam was stellar. Ronan’s dynamic with his family and Kavinsky is also charged. And the dreams. So much praise for the dreams. Very excited for Book 3 and what awaits Blue and the boys.

Okay, time for me to dive back into revisions. Oh, and hopefully I’ll have a STOLEN cover to share with you later this week! In the meantime, what did you read and love in September?

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