Geeklings, I can’t figure out if I’m having a good reading year or not and that’s bothering me. For one thing, I set my Good Reads goal at 42 because I reached 41 books last year and, as we all know, the meaning of life is 42 which made it seem like a healthy choice. Yet here we are four months in and I can’t tell if my reading year is going well. I’m currently sitting on thirteen books for the year (I believe it’s thirteen I’m just too lazy to get my Fancy Comic Book Reader and check), and almost half of those have been graphic novels. I don’t know, seems a little weird to me. In years previous my list was more book heavy than graphic novel heavy and I don’t know what to make of it. Am I just reading slower now? I never really believed I was a “fast” reader to begin with but I also wouldn’t describe myself as slow. I’m an every word reader and I want to savor the story that’s being told. That’s not to say that I won’t consume a book in three days, but within those three days I’m reading every word. For serious.
There’s a part of me that thinks that maybe my new glasses are having some kind of perverse effect on my reading ability. I seemed to read more with my old glasses. Could this be some sort of glasses conspiracy preventing me from reading as much as I’d like? Or could it just be that I’m getting older and it’s taking me longer to get through a page? I don’t know why but that’s the saddest thought ever. The fact that my age, which isn’t that old to begin with, is some how hindering my ability to read.. I don’t care for that at all. Seriously Geeklings, if that’s what getting older is then I want to Peter Pan the shit out of life right now. That will not fly with me. So, it’s got to be my glasses, right?
Or maybe it’s the fact that I’m kind of wearing a number of different hats right now. On one hand I’m maintaining my two jobs and then on the other hand I’ve got my writing duties here and on Fan Fest. Now throw in the podcast and time gets even shorter (p.s. we’re recording tomorrow!). This is in no way a complaint as I’ve loved trying to balance all these things with a dash of social life and now a lady friend, but I guess that leaves less time for reading. This seems like the more logical answer for why my numbers have probably slowed a bit, but I’m still wanting to blame my new glasses. And for those of you who want to suggest my old glasses, they are no longer strong enough for my eyes so that would be pointless. Not to mention they kind of hurt my ears now. That’s weird, right?
With all that being said though, I did read three books last month, two novels and one graphic novel. Which I’d like to break down right now in case you were thinking about reading some of these things yourselves, and because it’s the whole point of this column.
11. & 12. A Gathering of Shadows & A Conjuring Of Light by V.E. Schwab– I’m going to include these two together as they complete the trilogy I started last month, and because I read them back to back and it’s my column and I’ll do as I please. I really enjoyed this series, as a matter of fact, I enjoyed it so much I wish there were more books coming from this universe as I feel it lends itself to a bigger scope. Shadows had a bit of a darker Triwizard tournament feel to it, and built tension subtly and swiftly, so when the end came you were left saying “oh, eff you”. One of Schwab’s strongest points is her ability to create characters you can sink your teeth into and I felt that Shadows did a tremendous job taking our main characters from the first book and fleshing them out even further. While book two tends to be the “set up” book in a trilogy series, there was a great deal of time spent making these characters matter. Even the newly introduced ones. I appreciated that.
When it came to Conjuring, I can’t think of a third book in a series that caught the tension from the previous novel and ran with it the entire book. Granted, there were periods where the reader was allowed to catch their breath, but for the most part Conjuring felt important and pertinent, and really raised the stakes. Everything the characters did or experienced felt important and necessary to the overall story. This book is in turns heartbreaking and warming. Runs the gambit of feels and I felt it closes out the series on a high note.
It’s easy to make the Harry Potter comparisons here because, you know, magic, but this book was more than that. Like I said last month, it was very accessible fantasy with characters who jumped off the page and begged you to connect to them. This is totally worthy of your time. I promise.
13. Star Wars: Showdown On the Smuggler’s Moon by Jason Aaron– The year of Star Wars is back in full swing and I really enjoyed this collection of comics. We got a little bit more of Luke searching to be a Jedi, and one of the cooler lightsaber moments in the entire saga (near the end of the book and worth every dollar). We learn a bit more about what happened to the Jedi Temple, a possible wife for Han, Chewie gets to kick some ass, and there’s a Hutt who wears lightsabers as a necklace. As far as bridging the gaps between Episode IV and V, Jason Aaron is doing a terrific job. Not to mention, it seems like he’s having a blast while doing it.
There you have it Geeklings. That was my month in reading. Not bad. I’m currently hoping to get through three novels and maybe two graphic novels this month. A bit optimistic? Sure. Doable? You bet. What did you guys read last month? Sound off in the comments below. Sharing is caring.