OOPS! Accidentally posted this early last week. Sorry for everyone who has already read it!
Working in the book industry, I feel like I’m always making new discoveries while stocking the shelves, but I rarely keep track of them all. I show them to my coworkers, maybe take a photo if I’m smart enough, but often things just get forgotten. I’m getting old and my memory isn’t what it used to be. 😛
Maureen Johnson – Technically I have read a book from this author before, but it was part of a series written with several other authors and I think that affected her voice a bit. With the Truly, Devious series I feel like Johnson has come into her own. I can’t wait to keep reading this intriguing teen mystery series.
Charlie N. Holmberg – I heard about the Paper Magician series a few years ago, but never gave it a try until I was commuting regularly and started listening to the audiobooks. I really love the characters, and I think the whole concept of limited magics linked to specific items (ie. paper, metal, plastic, etc) is really unique.
Ben Aaronovitch – I really like unique urban fantasy. Aaronovich has a bad habit of focusing on how hot all the women in the Rivers of London series are, reducing many of the female characters to little more than potential sexual partners for the main character, but his magical world building is very interesting. The concept that people can turn into gods and goddesses through intense emotion as they die is pretty great. I also like that he doesn’t always take the most obvious route with his story. There are some great twists that continue to develop throughout the series that I never would have expected.
Paige Shelton – I’ve been hooked on cozy mysteries for a few years now, and I’m always thrilled to find a new author who writes about bookstores. The Scottish Bookstore Mystery series is another great example of the small town girl who solves mysteries while also finding love. Many of these books are set in England, or the US midwest, so it’s nice to find one that is a little outside the geographical norm.
Matt Haig – I set myself a bit of a challenge during December… I was going to read at least one “Christmas” book each week leading up to the holiday. I tried to read across different genres and age ranges just to get a feel for the theme. The Girl Who Saved Christmas series seemed like the logical read for a middle grade book. I really liked his take on the Father Christmas story, and this book really moved quickly to a satisfying ending. It was definitely the most Christma-y of all the books I read this year.
Seasonal fiction – As mentioned above, this year I decided to try reading one winter/Christmas themed book each week for the month of December. It was a lot of fun getting suggestions from my coworkers, and trying to find books that I had easy access to that fit the theme. I’ve come to realize that just because a book says “Christmas” in the title, you can’t expect anything about the holidays in it. The mystery titles that I read in this theme were the worst offenders, barely acknowledging the season at all.
Brand inspired books – I honestly don’t know what else to call this genre, but basically I see it as any book that is written about an identifiable brand. This could be a retail chain or food item, but mostly they are based off a TV show… ie. Castle, Coronation Street, Veronica Mars, and Emmerdale. This year I read Quality Street Girls by Penny Thorpe and it was steeped in knowledge of the Mackintosh chocolate factory in Halifax… but sadly, had little else to recommend it. Thorpe was commissioned to write this tale through a partnership between Nestlé and Harper Collins, and that left it feeling a bit forced. The characters didn’t seem to have the same depth that I have come to expect from authors who write a story they truly need to tell.
Tarot – There are approximately 1.5 billion books on tarot reading published each year, or at least that’s how it feels when you start looking for one that suits your needs. I have been trying to figure out which one is the best fit for my own personal tarot reading style, since I’m not exactly the hippie-chick type that usually gravitates to these things. My personal favourite so far has been WTF is Tarot?: …& How Do I Do It? by Bakara Wintner because it’s so no-nonsense and just gives me the info I need without trying to sell me on some mystical connection to spirit guides that I don’t believe in.
Podcasts – I’ve been listening to various podcasts for a while, but did you know that now podcast artists are starting to write books too? Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide by Karen Kilgariff, Georgia Hardstark is just too much fun not to try. I asked for it for Christmas and can’t wait to get into it.
Oh…. I guess I didn’t do a lot of discovering this last year. I only managed 8. I’ll have to try harder for 2020!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week a new Top Ten list for anyone to answer. Just add a link to them on your post, and add your name to the weekly linky!