New(ish) today Tuesday

Or, what’s new in my reading life this week.

Happy new release Tuesday to all of us! I’m going to make this a weekly feature, and week one has taught me that I should definitely have my post ready to go Monday night. I had the best intentions of turning my outline into a blog before work, then on my lunch break, then right after work, but here I am posting it well into the evening. Lesson learned!

New releases!

Today is release day for The Jane Austen Society by Natalie Jenner and I am very excited about this one.

I’m a Jane Austen fangirl and historical fiction is my very favorite genre, so naturally I requested an advanced copy on NetGalley. I’m nearly finished with the ARC, but today I got the fantastic news that my hold for the audiobook came in at the library. On day one! It’s almost like winning the lottery! Anyway, I will be listening to the audio and posting my review as soon as possible.

Speaking of libraries for the win, last week was the much-anticipated release of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes by Suzanne Collins, and three days ago, my hold came in for the audiobook.

I’m seeing a lot of mixed reviews about this one on Litsy, but still looking forward to getting to this prequel to The Hunger Games series as soon as I can.

Hooray for libraries!

New on my nightstand:

How Much of These Hills is Gold by C. Pam Zhang is next up for me in the physical book department.

One of my May books for Litsy Mark-up Postal Book Club, this one needs to be in the mail by 5/31. I’ve had good luck with the last few western-ish historical fictions I’ve read, so I have high hopes for this pretty book.

New in my ears:

Perfume by Patrick Süskind is my next audiobook.

Having finally finished the beast that was 2666, I’m on to the much shorter, but likely no less disturbing, Perfume. After that, I probably need to line up something just a bit lighter.

New in my own library:

😍

Despite having finally completed my set of Jane Austen novels in the gorgeous Penguin clothbound classics earlier this year, I used the formation of our online Austen group the #PemberLittens as an excuse to purchase all of the novels again from Chiltern Classics. Pride & Prejudice took the longest, since it was out of stock everywhere in the US, but it was worth the wait. Look at these beauties!

We are currently reading Sense & Sensibilty one chapter per day, so I alternate between my two lovely editions each day. Because why not?

What’s new in your reading life this week?

My week of living bookishly

It’s strange how time seems to pass both slowly and quickly during this pandemic… despite what an alarmingly large number of my fellow Americans are doing, we are still very much living the quarantine life at my house, with no plans to discontinue anytime soon. Now that school for the kids is officially on break, and I’ve settled into a routine working from home most of the week, it feels like my reading time is improving in quantity and quality. Hooray! Read on for some notes from my last week:

Books I finished

I managed to finish not one, not two, but THREE books from my ridiculous NetGalley backlog this week. I think I’m going to finally make it to that elusive 80% ratio in June, if I can stop myself from requesting new books for a hot minute. 😬

First up, The Winter Sisters by Tim Westover.

I like the concept of this well-written book: historical fiction with a bit of magical realism, set in a mountain community in Georgia in 1822. Dr. Waycross joins his modern medical training together with the local healers (and possible witches) the Winter Sisters as a rabid panther stalks the woods. Folklore, superstition, and plenty of humor come together nicely, but I would have preferred more of the sisters and less of the doctor. ⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2

Next, I finished Fate of the Fallen by Kel Kade.

This was a hard book to review, as it was slow to grab my attention, far more interesting in the middle, and then just sort of fizzled at the end. It has an interesting premise: what if the chosen one falls and the sidekick has to save the day? I enjoyed the humor and banter, but not so much the writing: the plot skips around in a jarring manner and I like my fantasy with more complete world-building. Not sure I will continue with this series. ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Finally, I finished The Book of V. by Anna Solomon.

This was my favorite book of the week for sure. See my review here on the blog. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2

Books in progress

Sense & Sensibility by Jane Austen. I’m working on a reread together with my Litsy-based, online JA fan club, the #PemberLittens. Several of us are taking a chapter-a-day approach and it’s been really fun to read along with these ladies and take it slow.

2666 by Roberto Bolaño. I’m listening to the amazing audiobook for this chunkster. I chose it for a read around the world challenge on Litsy (I needed a book by a Chilean author) because it’s also on the #1001Books to read before you die list that I’m slowly chipping away at. This book is intense!

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson. I’m reading this book for a postal book club, the theme of which was retellings. So far, it’s definitely a darker sort-of-retelling of Peter Pan, and Pan is pretty dark to begin with.

Miscellany and Etcetera

Caught up on Mondays with Michelle Obama with the kiddo. ❤️ Check it out!

We LOVED the second story the most!

Watched the new Emma movie. Again.

I freaking love this movie!

Watched both the 1995 Sense & Sensibility movie and the 2008 miniseries, because a chapter-a-day was getting super hard to stick to. 😳

Me too, Marianne. Me too.

Watched a great zoom discussion with Sally Rooney, the stars and director of the Normal People series on Waterstones’ YouTube and then talked myself out of binging the whole show again because I needed to work. 😂

All in all, a good week. Monday is a holiday here, so I’m hopeful that I can get some good reading time in and hit some of my crazy May goals.

Until next time, take care of you!