Thursday, July 7, 2011

July Readingfest

While many of my fellow writing pals are off at CampNano, I'm stuck in a work schedule that leaves my creative brain fried and my fingers reluctant to go anywhere near my laptop. I did manage to get away for a long holiday weekend to take our first official family camping trip.

Other than some majorly rude and annoyingly obnoxious camp site neighbors, it was a wonderful experience. The weather was perfect. We found interesting fossil rocks, played in the sand, paddled around in a canoe and cooked food over the fire. Good stuff. I also brought a book and tried to get a little reading done.

Honestly, I did more carrying the book around intending to read it than actual reading, but having the leisure to do so did manage to rekindle the urge to read for enjoyment that had been lacking due to critiquing for the past couple years and trying to get my own writing done. Once home and the camping gear put away, I sat down and poured through the sand speckled pages. Then I picked up another and read that. I just cracked open a third. I've declared this month my Readingfest.

I'm hoping to work through some of my towering TBR pile. So far I've conquered:
The Barbarian by Judith French A good romance tale with a little lite history on the side. Other than feeling, from the amount of backstory inserted, that this was a book two, I didn't find much to distract me from enjoying the story of Alexander's wife, Roxanne, her hidden child, Ptolemy's need to outshine his dead brother, his missing bastard... oh and, of course, the hot barbarian prince who rescues her. I enjoyed the fact that this was a more mature romance in that Mr. Hottie had adopted and raised two boys on his own and both of the MCs were on their second marriage. No heaving-breasted virgins here, no sir.

For the past two days, my head has been stuck in Dark Fire by Christine Feehan. While formulaic like I've found the Carpathian series generally to be, it was still an enjoyable, quick read. Stong-willed and perpetual loner Tempest finds herself employed as the mechanic of an eccentric band, who are all secretly Carpathians (not exactly vampires). When their large, domineering bodyguard declares she is his lifemate and bonds them together, she must come to grips with kissing her loner lifestyle goodbye for all eternity. Lots of sex seems to help her adjust. The dialogue felt stiff in places and the descriptions repetitive, but overall, I wasn't complaining.

This morning, I dove into the long awaited Jacqueline Carey's Naamah's Blessing which arrived in my mailbox yesterday. Having reached chapter eleven by lunch, I've already laughed and cried. It took Puss in Boots eyes and much tugging from my daughter to dislodge me from the book in order to get my motherly duties and work day going. I marvel at Carey's skill at weaving so much emotion into her characters and creating such a wonderfully detailed world. I'm sad to see another of her trilogies close but anxious to see if another will follow. More gushing on this novel when I finish it. Which will likely be tomorrow at this pace. Who needs sleep?

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