Manners & Mutiny

When I laughed at TW for picking up Manners & Mutiny, I was very sure we’d already read it. I have no idea how we hadn’t read it. SO WEIRD, I used to be obsessive about watching for new books in some key series. Weird. I’m glad she picked it up!

The Finishing School series has not been my favorite of Carriger’s books so I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this one. Last book in the series, it played it as it should have. I particularly loved Mademoiselle Geraldine’s role in the story.

Now I’m off to the library website to see if I’ve missed any other books in the other series… maybe in the Custard Protocol. It’s been awhile since we’ve read one of those.

Everfair

Well, that took forever and now that I’ve finished I can’t figure out why I didn’t quit Everfair (like TW did.)

It’s an alternate history afro-steampunk story (with a few lesbian/bi characters) which sounds like something I should really enjoy, right? That’s what I kept telling myself. And I did enjoy a line here and there or a page or two every now and then. I wanted to like it. I should have liked it but I really just didn’t.

Great idea. Great topic. Poorly executed.

Prudence (The Custard Protocol)

Yippee! Another Gail Carriger book!

I loved Prudence and am definitely going to love this series more than The Finishing School series. (TW on the other hand likes that series better than this one. Weird.)

I like Prudence and Prim even better than I liked their moms and I liked their moms a lot. These girls are not Alexis and Ivy clones — they feel very much like daughters rather than clones, that’s important.

I’m also super-interested to see what happens in the next book. Prudence seems to know less about her mother and father (not the vampire father) than I’d have expected. That’s interesting. I get that her vampire father really did become her father but still… interesting to get an idea of just how that whole situation worked out for Prudence. Very interesting. Bring on the next book!

Jacaranda

I love Cherie Priest and very much enjoyed Jacaranda, even if it was only very very loosely tied to the Clockwork Century series. It also had an ending that was a little bit of a letdown after the action leading up to it. But, then again — that’s the way hurricanes often are, so I was pretty ok with it.

The Great Abraham Lincoln Pocket Watch Conspiracy

It took me awhile to get into The Great Abraham Lincoln Pocket Watch Conspiracy — I was having trouble with the setting. This happens sometimes when real people are in fiction or, worse yet, steam punk fiction. Everything is so … far-fetched that it takes me awhile to suspend disbelief and just go with it.

Once I did that — I was good. It was a fun story. Interesting. I wish I’d known more about damn Nellie Taft but am certainly glad to know more now. Cool woman.

The Curious Case of the Werewolf That Wasn’t…

After I finished Waistcoats & Weoponry, I was surfing Gail Carriger’s author page on Amazon and noticed a novella that I’d never read… a prequel to the Parasol Protectorate series so I downloaded The Curious Case of the Werewolf That Wasn’t, the Mummy That Was, and the Cat in the Jar — that’s a mouthful and the title is almost longer than the short story.

Which is exactly what was wrong with this… it wasn’t so much a novella as a short story and it was too short. Way too short. There was some bouncing around that only barely made sense. Horrible transitions. I didn’t hate it and I’m glad I read it — it just wasn’t enough.

2 Awesome Non-Cybil YA Books

Since I can see the end of my Cybils shortlist challenge tunnel, it seemed like a good idea to reserve some of the new books in YA series I’ve started but hadn’t quite kept up with.

First, the third book in the Cahill Witch series, Sisters’ Fate turned out to be better than I expected. After a rough few pages when I barely remembered what the series was about, I settled in and really enjoyed it. I’m not a big fan of Cate, which is too bad since she’s the narrator — but I love all of the other characters and eventually found myself appreciating Cate, too.

And, the third book in the Finishing School series, Waistcoats & Weaponry was possibly the best book in the series. I need some sort of family tree thingy though to see where all of the tie-ins to the Soulless series are. Some are obvious, some are less so (particularly since I read the Soulless books so long ago.) I also need another book in the series — quickly. This one was so much fun.

Fiddlehead

I love Cherie Priest and I really like the Clockwork Century series — Fiddlehead might be my favorite in the series mostly because I love what she did with Lincoln (he doesn’t die) and with Grant (he’s awesome, even in is often inebriated state.) I love Belle and how so many of the characters from the series came together to end the war AND get to work on the saffron aka necrotic leprosy problem.

Loved Mary Todd Lincoln. Loved, loved, loved and I stayed up way to late to see how it all ended (perfectly.)

Curtsies & Conspiracies

I sent Michelle a copy of Curtsies & Conspiracies for her birthday so I decided to read it in celebration of her birthday. Seemed fitting, right?

I enjoyed it — still not as much as I liked the Parasol Protectorate but I definitely enjoyed it. Like Michelle, I really like Vieve and wish she had more of a primary role. I’m kind of hoping we see a third series spin off for her… or something… Not that I don’t like Sophronia and the other girls, I just like Vieve more. I also wish Carriger wrote faster, darn it.

Steampunk Gazette

There’s a shelf at my library that lures me in every time. It’s a non-fiction, new release shelf, and if I walk past it, I will throw an unplanned read into my bag — and that’s what happened with The Steampunk Gazette.

I’ve had it on my library cart to read for ages and I just keep putting it off. I was afraid it was going to be too full of words that might ruin my steampunk fun. It wasn’t that at all.

It’s full of awesome photos and the words are kind of like a middle grade pictorial encyclopedia would be. Easy to read. Easy to skim. Interesting tidbits. Totally fun.

Stumbling across a mention of my friend Sarah Dopp for her Genderplayful didn’t hurt either.

Also, I want one of these:

I really want a wall tentacle. TW said “Grandmothers don’t have wall tentacles.” I told her she’s full of shit. I want one. (I’m going to be 50 years old this year and nothing screams 50! like a wall tentacle, if you ask me. While I normally prefer orange, I think that would clash with all of my other orange so a blue or a green would probably be better. Someone take care of that for me.)