Kind of a little late today on the first day of March, but I got distracted reading. And being really lazy. Though to be fair, I read three books already today so not TOO lazy. Other then the lolling around and not showering until 2pm part. Hmph. Let’s ignore that.

Three books today! I’m well on my start for March. I was kind of disappointed in myself for February since I set a goal of reading 28 books. Hey, I was like–February’s short! I should read as many books as there are days. Didn’t make it. Almost made it. Sort of. If you count books I didn’t finish. I almost just read a bunch of graphic novels so I could fake success. But I think too much of you people to cheat like that. No. Really.

Well, I didn’t do it so obviously I think something of you. Or, more likely, myself. But March is a new month and I’m already two up. Maybe it’s a re-goal.

So. February. My birthday month! Good times. It’s like I reach February and my brain says, Eek! It’s almost your birthday and you will get MORE books. Better read all these ones you got for Christmas fast, bozo. Motivating.

Books Read: 17

Books Partially Read: 7 (See if you add those together it’s 24. Almost 28.)

Books Bought: 0

Money Spent: 0!

Books Borrowed: 3 (Have I grown disillusioned with the library? Have I just read all their books?)

Books Given: 5

Books Re-read: 7 (I got nostalgic. For really bad British YA novels. It has significantly impacted my brain speech patterns. It’s not pretty in here.)

Books on To-Be-Read Shelf: 29 (Well, it’s a little better than last month.)

I feel like I read a wider variety of book types this month but looking back it’s really the same old. YA, romance, and fantasy. I did try some out of my comfort zone reading–apocalypse fiction of the serious kind (not the kind I write with pirates and ninjas). Namely The City, Not Long After by Pat Murphy and Into the Forest by Jean Hegland. Both set in California, both seemed awesome, both bored me. Sigh. They did seem really awesome and I think many people I know would love them. I just have serious misgivings about serious literature. Give me a quick laugh and a cheap thrill any time. I like my fiction escapist.

And speaking of… my favorites this month were, of course, ridiculous.

I re-read The DUFF: (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) by Kody Keplinger and it remained awesome. I complimented it before and I stand by my words.

I also read the latest Kresley Cole. Cole is a romance writer. I read all her paranormal titles and they are fairly uniformly hilarious and awesome. Great sex scenes and fabu characters. This one–Dreams of a Dark Warrior (Immortals After Dark Series, Book 9)–starred Regin (the Radiant), one of my favorite Valkyries in some of the other books. She is sass and a texter supreme. Hilarity reigns with Regin the Radiant, got it? But this book was kind of a let-down in terms of her being kick-ass. Possibly because she kept getting tortured. Still pretty good. Way better than the last one. Stupid vemon (vampire demon).

Two books by new authors (to me) that I liked were The Lost Gate by Orson Scott Card and Bleeding Violet by Dia Reeves.

I feel a little ashamed admitting I’d never read Card. I mean, Ender’s Game? Classic sci-fi. Never read it. The Lost Gate is a YA book which might be the first way it sucked me in but it was also really, really good. I see why he’s so famous now. And then Dia Reeves. Holy Bleep. What can I say about this book? It’s about a girl who’s kind of a sociopath and falls in love(?possibly love?) with a boy who’s also kind of a sociopath. It is AWESOME. It’s set in this town in Texas where there are gates everywhere. Not like happy wooden white picket fence gates, like gates through space. Some people can see them, some people can’t. And sometimes really bad things come through them. This is not a town I would want to live in. Nor would I want to live in Dia Reeve’s mind. But sign me up for visiting in book form any time. I cannot wait for the stupid library to get her follow-up set in the same town. It’s called Slice of Cherry and is about serial killer sisters. Squee! So dark, so twisty, so innovative.

So good.

Hmm, what else did I like this month? I enjoyed re-reading my ridic YA books by Katie Maxwell about Emily. Her voice is so perfect and hilarious in these. It makes me laugh and want to wring her neck. There are 5 of them but there should be more because it totally cliff-hangers. But Katie Maxwell has gotten too caught up in her stupid vampire Dark One and Dragon adult romance series to finish the Emily ones. Lame.

I liked the new Eloise James too–When Beauty Tamed the Beast. Probably because I almost always enjoy Beauty and the Beast stories. Though the whole chicken coop with scarlet fever episode was disgusting.

I also read the sequel/companion novel to The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin (which, if you’ll remember I crazy loved to the point of sounding racist) titled The Broken Kingdoms. It took me like two months to finish this book because it was such a huge disappointment. I still want to read the final one in the series, I can only believe it will be better and less abstractly about aesthetics than characters and plot. Groan.

Also kind of disappointing was Jennifer Crusie’s latest, Maybe This Time. Just not the same energy or entertainment value as Agnes and the Hitman. Too much ghosts and evilness happening to little kids. Also super bratty little kids. Not their fault per se what with all the poltergeists, but still. And the guy was kind of not romantic. It’s a romance novel. I mean, work with me here.

I read Zack Whedon’s contribution to the continuing Firefly saga–Shepherd’s Tale and really just want to say: “Joss, get off your ass and write something again. Your brother is NOT YOU.” Though I did enjoy the part where Jayne called River “Jelly Brain”. And the reverse linear story-telling was interesting.

Gah. I have too many books to talk about this month. Sorry. There was a lot of interesting things happening.

Finale to Karen Marie Moning(Yes. Moning)’s horrid Fever series came out–Shadowfever–and I got it late for Christmas and read the gigantically fat volume this month. I think it should count as three books. It’s terribly fat. At least 2 books. It was…ugh. Well, at least it finally explained some things. But jeez louise it took a long time getting there and laying mis-trails. I don’t really recommend reading these ever. I did kind of at first when I’d only read the first one but then I read all of them. And now I can say pretty definitively as the one who braved all five that you don’t need to go there. Let it be the unexplored country to you and I can be the sole survivor who returned from the tundra and said “There be dragons.” Ha! Actually, there are sort of dragons in it.

Last one! No! Seriously! I somehow discovered Harmony by Project Itoh and was intrigued by the whole concept of Japanese sci-fi/fantasy. Mm. Ok, wait no. That came out wrong. I’ve read Japanese sci-fi/fantasy before. I guess I mean the new wave of progressive younger writers who are making it a scene in Japan right now? There’s a whole movement and I was curious about them. So I got this book with one of my many Xmas/Bday Amazon GCs. It was interesting. Parts of it were boring and the philosophy’s proponents had holes in their arguments sometimes, I felt. But the style was new feeling to me. All the html (called etml because it was emotional encoding to simulate feelings) was fascinating because my brain totally thinks like that too! Notice I use it in the last post before this one. It’s totally fake html encoding, obviously–it’s just used to simulate emotion or present non-linear story-telling snippets. At least that’s how he (and also I) used it as you can see in my example. He wrote Harmony while he was in the hospital dying so there’s that added notoriety to the novel–which is both depressing and probably really, really good for sales. It’s not great (though I question if some/most of that is the translation) but sometimes it is poetry and perfectly shiny.

OK. I feel I’ve pretty well covered my likes and dislikes this month. And this has gotten to the too long point and past it already. So I’ll leave you. Till next month. Which may or may not include 31 books read. Don’t think I won’t read all 23 volumes of Fruits Basket over again just to make it too. Because I have been thinking of doing that anyway. Fluttery Sigh. Fruits Basket.