Reading Lately September 2017 Edition

Hi friends! Welcome to Reading Lately! Be sure to join Catherine (Catherine Chicotka) and I for the linkup below and add more books to your to-read list! September was a great reading month for me, with 7 books move to the read shelf.
Reading Lately September 2017 edition: book reviews of Ancillary Mercy by Ann Leckie; Void Star by Zachary Mason; A Perilous Undertaking and A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn; Behind the Crown and After the Crown by K.B. Wagers | Puppies & Pretties

What I’ve been reading lately

Mask of Shadows by Linsey Miller: This was an interesting book. It has a similar premise as The Hunger Games where people complete to become part of the Queen’s Hand, aka her badass killers. But it seems the main selling point for this book is that the main character, Sal, is gender fluid. Which I thought was odd. Honestly, it barely came up during the story. Except when Sal explained to the other members of the Hand what pronoun to use when talking to Sal. Thats pretty much it. Beyond that, there was a little inner dialogue where Sal thinks about previous encounters. So for how hard the gender fluidity was pushed, I thought it would of been a bigger part of the story. Honestly, Sal could of been either male or female and the story would pretty much be the same. Maybe that was the point though. Onto the story – Obviously, a group of wanna-be killers, there is going to be quite a bit action. But the storyline really struggled to move at some points. And then at the end, it went so fast I had to go back and re-read a page or two because I couldn’t figure out what just happened. I’ll likely pick up the next book in the series when it comes out, but probably from the library.
3.5 out of 5 stars
c/o Netgalley

Ancillary Mercy by Ann Leckie: I had read the previous books in this trilogy quite some time ago. For whatever reason, I hadn’t picked up the final book until now. It carries on from the previous book and it didn’t disappoint. I would recommend this series to anyone. It is pretty high science fiction with AI’s, traveling in space and ships that have bodies that are extensions of them. But the series does a fascinating job of tackling genders, stereotypes, and human nature. Amazing writing, great world building and characters that you care about.
5 out of 5 stars

Void Star by Zachary Mason: I had high hopes for this book. Set in the near future, it deals with AI’s, memories, and morality. However, it didn’t pull through for me. While there was certainly action, nothing seems to actually happen. Multiple storylines took forever to come together. I hardly cared about the characters. So while the backbone was certainly there, it didn’t flesh out in the way that I had hoped.
2 out of 5 stars
c/o Netgalley

A Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourn: I seriously love this series. I read the first book either earlier this year or late last year. Set in Victorian England, we follow the main character, Veronica, on her exploits throughout London. A butterfly hunter by trade and always looked at a little oddly due to her occupation and lack of husband, she cares little for snotty society. She is pulled into a mystery that she has to solve with the help of her historian friend Stoker. If you like lighter hearted “whodunit” type books you will likely enjoy this series. Plus a female main character that bucks the society norms is always a plus in my book.
4 out of 5 stars

A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn: Veronica is once again pulled into an investigation, this time with an Egyptian theme. Stoker and Veronica have to figure it out while some parts of Stoker’s not so nice past gets pulled back into the limelight. This book featured more of the relationship between Stoker and Veronica. Once again, a fun book to read if you like Victorian England and a great female lead character.
4 out of 5 stars
c/o Netgalley

Behind the Throne by K.B. Wagers: I seriously loved this book. It is a space opera set in an empire with a matriarchy. The main character, a princess, left the empire as a teenager to try and find her father’s killer and in the process, became a gun runner. However, terrible things happen back home and she is drug back to become the heir apparent. What follows her coming to terms with her new role in life and trying to catch up with the empire. Oh, and not get killed in the process.
4 out of 5 stars
c/o Netgalley

After the Crown by K.B. Wagers: This picks up right after Behind the Throne. Hail is the empress of an empire that is on the brink of war. She needs allies and fast. But things go wrong and her enemies are not just on the outside of the empire. She falls back to her gunrunning ways to get back on top and help her empire. I loved the world building of this series. The characters are well rounded. The only thing that bugged me a little is the insta-loyalty that in terms of some characters. However, Hail does end up earning that trust, so it doesn’t bother me quite as much. I already have the third book on pre-order.
4 out of 5 stars

What have you been reading lately?

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  • I haven’t heard of any of these! Will need to keep them in mind once I get through what’s currently on my bookshelf!

  • Talisa Garbo

    Right now I’m digging into Jeffrey Robinson’s Grace of Monaco: A True Story. I got it for dirt cheap about a year ago at a used books store, didn’t make much of it but now I can’t get enough. I’m actually also looking for some new reads for autumn cause all I pretty much do is curl up and read!😃I recently did a vid myself about four of my favourite books; including the one I’m reading right now.

  • I have to say, when I see reading lists I’m normally not so impressed. I feel like we like the same kind of books.

  • I read the first in Deanna Raybourn’s series about Veronica, but I found the plot a little too ridiculous to continue with the books. Should I push on?

    • I’d say they are just as ridiculous. I enjoyed it, but if you didn’t like the first one, I would probably pass on the others.

  • Cat

    Looks like you had a great month of reading, and had some great books to read! Mask of Shadows sounds interesting, I haven’t heard anything about it so maybe that won’t bother me as much lol. Definitely going to pick up Ancillary Mercy and the previous books!

  • Ooh these sound great. I already added A Curious Beginning, but I just added the Behind the Throne book too. 🙂 XO – Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

  • The Ann Leckie series in on my TBR. I may have to take a closer look at it because I’ve been itching to start a new fantasy series.

  • So I would have picked Void Star based on the cover…and undoubtedly been disappionted. LOL

  • I love Ann Leckie’s books. Her newest one just came out, I need to buy it soon!