Thursday, September 29, 2011

3 down and 1 to go

Guess the title for this blog can be used for two things: my work week and my to be read pile.

I have one day left in my work week, thank goodness. This has been a very odd week with half of the office leaving for San Diego and the rest of us waiting for them to leave! My boss, who doesn't work in our office, is also getting ready to depart which means I've had a very random assortment of things to do for him as he ties up loose ends. Yesterday I proofed a lot of meeting agendas, reviewed some new public outreach artwork and tag lines and scoured the internet for online magazine advertising rate cards. Fun times! The day did go fast though.

My to be read pile is now down to one last book, which I started yesterday and powered through to the point where I have about 1/3 left to read.

The three books I returned yesterday were the historical novel by CW Gortner, "The Tudor Secret," the YA novel "Steel" by Carrie Vaughn and the medieval mystery "Nightshade " by PC Doherty.

I enjoyed all three. Gortner's historical fiction is usually well done. He puts together a quickly paced book with some memorable characters, often taking well known figures and tweaking them just enough from the norm to make it interesting. In this case, Robin Dudley was drawn as a real 'ass' and Elizabeth I a very mercurial young woman. Interesting!  PC Doherty is a wonderful mystery writer and his Hugh Corbett series is one of the best set in medieval times.  He never disappoints.

Okay, now onto Carrie Vaughn. I thoroughly enjoy Vaughn's adult urban fantasy series featuring the werewolf named Kitty. Yep. Good stuff all the way around.  "Steel" is Vaughn's second YA novel. I've not read her first. While I enjoyed this novel, it had some great pirate stuff in it, it just never hit its stride for me. I liked Jill, our time traveling heroine, who finds herself on a pirate ship after falling overboard from a tourist boat with a piece of an old sword in her pocket. Jill is a competitive fencer, so of course, there is quite a bit of rapier dueling in this story. But, I just couldn't shake the feeling that Vaughn was writing 'down.' Her voice seemed a bit forced and the overall tone of the novel just didn't have the flow that her Kitty books contain.

I've been toying with looking at the whole "I'm going to write YA because it is a hot market" trend going on in the adult urban fantasy author world. So far, I've read two authors who have jumped markets and done a smashing good job of it. James Patterson's Maximum Ride series is well done, although he isn't an urban fantasy author. But Lilith Saintcrow's Dru Anderson series does come from a very gritty urban fantasy writer and is well written.  Beyond that, I've been left a bit disappointed.

But, that is a post for another day.

Happy Thursday!

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