At the beginning of February, I thought my slump was finally over. At some point, I think I even reached two books a week. And then, it came back with a vengeance and for the rest of the month, I read nothing at all. I felt rather like Murderbot – leave me alone and let me watch my show. But! I’m only one book away from finishing the r/fantasy Bingo, which should be more than doable in March.
Also, every one of the books I finished has been queer to some extent.
- Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir: Honestly, this should have been a DNF. I did not like it at all, and by 30% knew I was not going to, but I persisted because I felt sick of DNFing. Bad move. It’s very aesthetic-over-everything, I didn’t like the style, I was bored by the plot, and a good epilogue does not a good book make.
- Central Station by Lavie Tidhar: Beautiful sci-fi fever dream and perfect for me. Near impossible to describe, but most highly recommended.
- Proper English by K.J. Charles: Not SFF, but I wanted to try a romance as a palate cleanser, and this worked really well. I’ve wanted more f/f for a long time. In particular, I loved the dynamics between the two main characters – the serious, sensible Pat who thinks herself awfully plain, and the bubbly, beautiful Fen who only wants to be taken seriously.
- Bonds of Brass by Emily Skrutskie (ARC): Space opera I picked up because it sounded very Star Wars inspired, but gay. And it was amazing, to the point I could barely keep reading and took much longer than I normally would have because it was too intense and I was too scared for the characters. Plot engineered for maximum internal conflict, twists, pew pew, it has it all. Review to come closer to release.
- The Cybernetic Tea Shop by Meredith Katz: Very sweet, asexual romance novella featuring a robot, an AI mechanic, and a tea shop. Won’t lie, it has been Bingo-motivated, as I needed to knock out the AI Character square quickly, but no regrets.
- Clone Wars: As always, when I feel like shit, I go for Star Wars. I blazed through 58 episodes (in chronological order), which puts me at a bit less than halfway done if I don’t count the new season – and yes, you read that right, less. Season 1 was full of garbage and I almost quit two or three times, but persistence paid off – by mid-season 2 I have started to want to watch it and now, well into season 3, I can barely stop once I start. There are still garbage episodes sometimes, sure, since the nature of the show seems to be that it’s either great or completely shit with no in-between, but the character development, the lore, the steadily increasing overall quality…wow. Star Wars at its finest and it really does the prequel era justice the way movies did not.
- Daughter from the Dark by Sergey & Maria Dyachenko (ARC): One of the ARCs from the pile I requested pre-slump. Also ran out of steam at about 20%, I think it’s a combination of not being sure what’s going on and the MC being an asshole (he’s meant to be an asshole, but it is hard to read).
- The Lady’s Guide to Celestial Mechanics by Olivia Waite: Another f/f historical romance I started after Proper English, but ran out of steam at about halfway. It’s very sweet, and very good, but apparently two historical romance books in a row and the stuffiness starts to get to me.
Books read this year: 9 (+ 0 rereads)
r/Fantasy Bingo Challenge progress: 24/25 (96%)