I tend to be an obsessive reader. From a young age I’ve loved going to libraries. My mom would bring us to the library in town where shelves-upon-shelves of easy chapter books and children’s books existed. While my brothers browsed the books with pictures and simple words, I’d scan the shelves for one of The Magic Tree House books that I hadn’t yet read. When my school sent us home with Scholastic book catalogues I’d read through the pages and circle the many I wanted, begging my mom to let me join the Boxcar Children and Baby-Sitter’s Little Sister book clubs they offered. As I got older I was able to walk the few blocks to the library myself and I’d stagger home with as many as I could carry, often from the Dinotopia and Animorphs series. I devoured book after book, discovering new loves like the Harry Potter series and Elizabeth I, one of the Royal Diaries series. (My love of England and interest in Elizabeth the First can probably be traced back to this book. ) For Christmas, all I asked for were books and I got them.
Moving to England for a brief time was a dream. Walking the streets were so many of my favorite books were set was something I had desired since I had first read them. Shopping in London bookstores for the British English editions of Harry Potter and antique copies of Shakespeare was incredibly fun. I have a passion for finding books that are beautifully bound with gilt edged pages, and I came away with quite a haul. My entire carry-on bag was full of books. I am quite aware that I have a purchasing problem, but I love the feel of a physical book in my hands–the new book smell, the smooth and creamy pages, the crisp noise of the first time you open a hardcover book. I just can’t resist them. With the purchase of a Kindle, I made the reluctant move to buying more ebooks because I couldn’t bring my physical copies when I moved abroad. I’m still able to visit my library through their growing ebook selection, but it’s not quite the same as walking the rows and scanning the names of books for one that screams out for me to read it. Scrolling past titles on my brightly lit computer screen just doesn’t have the same sense of wonder.
I’ve found this wonder in an unexpected place. When I worked at a bookstore I was able to read advance reading copies on break. The first one I ever read, The Fifth Wave, made me want to start a book blog. Unfortunately, I was a bit preoccupied with the move abroad and had to put it on the back burner. It’s been on the back burner for several years, but recently I’ve made it a point to become serious about the things that are important to me. When I first started, I struggled with finding things that were new. Of course, I love reading anything, but people already had formed opinions on a lot of the things that I was reviewing because they’ve been published for several years. Other book bloggers I follow were reading books that sounded fascinating and they were newly published or even advance reading copies. I want to provide reading advice to people who are looking for a new book to read. I wasn’t able to do this if I only reviewed books that have been out for years. After doing some research which involved a lot of book post stalking, I learned about places like NetGalley.
NetGalley is a wonderful place. Book bloggers are able to check out upcoming titles from many different publishers. By allowing people to read these advance reading copies, publishers are able to get a look at how the book may do once it’s published. And authors get a little boost before their book comes out. As an aspiring author, I know how important readers and book reviews are to a new book. By writing about upcoming and recently published books, I hope that I’m garnering some interest in what is being published in the vast world of young adult and new adult fiction. That is the beauty of reading these brand-spanking new titles. The danger, of course, goes back to my obsessive nature. It never is a problem to have too many books, but the problem is: I want them all. Good thing I’m a fast reader!
Angelstone: Second in the Dark Angel series, Hanna Peach was kind enough to let me read her series and review them. This is ongoing. I really like the take of the Angels and Demons that she portrays in its pages. Dark Angel deals with a prophecy that connects Heaven, Hell, the angels, the demons, and the humans caught between both worlds.
Noir: Second in the Illumination Paradox series, Noir also comes quick on the heels of Lumière. I finished up my review and discovered that the second was out. Thanks to NetGalley, Noir quickly moved up my reading list. These novels are set in a world where the shadows reign and steam punk devices make life a little more interesting–most of the time. I love the Victorian feel and the characters are very vivid. The ebook version was only recently published on August 18th and the paperback and audio versions are coming out September 22nd of this year.
Things I’m excited about:
Angelsong: The next in the Dark Angel series
Hunter by Mercedes Lackey: This one. I requested it ages ago and it took so long to get any sort of notification from the publisher that I assumed I hadn’t been approved. I assumed wrong. Very excited to read this one. The cover is really neat looking and the story promises to be interesting. Monsters have taken up residence in our world, and the people who survived the initial attacks have to live in communities that are protected from them. There are teenagers called Hunters who are charged with protecting citizens, but it becomes clear that the better they are at protecting, the more famous they become and the more scrutiny they fall under. It sounds like a mix between Attack on Titan and the television element of The Hunger Games. I’m so glad to have been approved. Hunter will be available on September 1st.