Mogsy’s Bookshelf Roundup: Stacking the Shelves & Recent Reads
Bookshelf Roundup is a feature I do every other weekend which fills the role of several blog memes, like Stacking the Shelves where I talk about the new books I’ve added to my library or received for review, as well as It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? where I round up what I’ve read since the last update and what I’m planning to read soon. Mostly it also serves as a recap post, so sometimes I’ll throw in stuff like reading challenge progress reports, book lists, and other random bookish thoughts or announcements.
Received for Review
Big thanks to the publishers and authors for the following review copies received, and be sure to click the links to their Goodreads pages for more details and full descriptions!
When I returned from vacation last month, I came home to some packages waiting for me – and what gems they contained! My thanks to Orbit for the following ARCs: Cold Iron by Miles Cameron is the first of a new epic fantasy series from the author who brought us the Traitor Son Cycle, and The Winter Road by Adrian Selby is a dark fantasy adventure about a crew of mercenaries accompanying a merchant caravan as they forge a road through an untamed and dangerous wilderness. The publisher also had one last surprise in store for me when I opened a third package, and out popped this audio cassette case. Yikes, I can’t remember the last time I held one of these things in my hands, though of course, it’s a perfect way to promote the audiobook and Spotify soundtrack to go with Bloody Rose by Nicholas Eames. I’ll have to look at what’s on the playlist soon, but since I’ve already read and reviewed the book, if anyone has a Downpour account and would be interested in my download code for the digital audiobook, shoot me an email.
And from the kind folks at Random House, I also received a finished copy of Heartbreaker by Claudia Dey. Not a book I was familiar with before it landed on my doorstep, but its description of equal parts cult-story and 80’s nostalgia featuring a mother-daughter relationship taking on a dark side is intriguing enough that I think I’ll take a look.
Also with thanks to Tor Books, I received the following finished copies: The Chrysalis by Brendan Deneen is a horror novel I’ve been highly anticipating, and I’m actually planning on starting it real soon. The Moons of Barsk by Lawrence M. Schoen is the sequel to the wild and unique Barsk: The Elephant’s Graveyard. And Arabella the Traitor of Mars by David D. Levine is the third novel of the Adventures of Arabella Ashby series, one I really should get caught up with as soon as possible.
The next batch of books are courtesy of the amazing team at Subterranean Press, who sent me the following ARCs: The Big Crush by David J. Schow is an urban thriller, a modern mystery noir, a contemporary love story, and a whole lot more. More Walls Broken by Tim Powers is novella that brings together fantasy and quantum physics in a richly imagined fashion. And for this third one, I actually had to wait until this week to feature in order to coincide with the 20th anniversary of Whatever, John Scalzi’s personal blog: Virtue Signaling and Other Heresies is a collection containing the author’s selected writings from the site published over the last five years. To be honest though, while I’m a huge fan of Scalzi’s fiction, I’m generally not at all fond of reading political and social essays/rants which looks to make up a bulk of this book, so I’ll probably stick to reading his sci-fi.
And finally, rounding us this week are a trio of books with thanks to Night Shade Books. MJ-12: Endgame by Michael J. Martinez is the third book of Majestic-12, a historical thriller/superhero mash-up series. Black Lotus Kiss by Jason Ridler is the second novel of Brimstone Files, described as a “salaciously pulpy” adventure series starring occult detective James Brimstone. I’m really hoping this one is a standalone, because it looks awesome but I haven’t even heard of the first book let alone read it yet! And Gridlinked by Neal Asher is I think a re-issue of the first book in the author’s Agent Cormac series. I really want to read Asher again, but he’s got so many books in his Polity universe that as a relative newcomer, it’s really hard to decide where to start. Maybe this is as good a place as any.
And kicking off our digital pile, with thanks to Tor.com for sending over an e-galley of Bedfellow by Jeremy C. Shipp. This dark fantasy novel of psychological horror sounds deliciously creepy! From HarperVoyager, I also received eARCs of Dragonshadow by Elle Katharine White, the sequel to her wonderful debut Heartstone, and Vita Nostra by Marina & Sergey Dyachenko, the English translation of their dark fantasy novel that mixes psychological suspense with magic and horror elements.
Also thanks to Penguin Random House Audio for a listening copy of Dracul by Dacre Stoker & J.D. Barker, which is touted as the prequel to Dracula as inspired by notes and texts left by Bram Stoker. I was curious about this one, and I finally caved when offered a chance to review the audiobook. And I also couldn’t resist downloading Solo: A Star Wars Story Expanded Edition by Mur Lafferty because of the author and of course the narrator, the brilliant Marc Thompson.
And one last one: with thanks to Harper Audio for a listening copy of Voyage of the Dogs by Greg Van Eekhout. I don’t generally read Middle Grade books, but I love the author and this one simply looked way too cute to pass up.
Today I’m also very excited to share one of the coolest books I’ve ever received in my 6+ years of blogging. From the kind folks at Wunderkind and Candlewick Press, I received this absolute beauty: Beyond the Sixth Extinction: A Post-Apocalyptic Pop-Up created by Shawn Sheehy and illustrated by Jordi Solano is a pop-up book featuring some of the wonderfully weird and creepy creatures that might spring up and dominate a far-distant future earth if our planet were to go through another global extinction. The year is 4847, and only the lifeforms best adapted to this post-apocalyptic wilderness can survive and thrive. Eight elaborate pop-up pages are crafted to represent some of these amazing creatures, which are sure to delight sci-fi fans and art enthusiasts alike.
And here I thought pop-up books were something I could only enjoy as a child, but apparently not! I loved looking at all the pop-ups and I can’t wait to take the time to read and admire the accompanying text and illustrations that go with them. This massive, gorgeous book isn’t due out for another month so I’m not sure how much I’m able to reveal, but maybe I can give a preview of a few of my favorites. Check out these awesome pop-up creatures:
A list of my reviews posted since the last update:
King of Assassins by RJ Barker (5 of 5 stars)
Bloody Rose by Nicholas Eames (4.5 of 5 stars)
Cross Her Heart by Sarah Pinborough (4 of 5 stars)
An Unwanted Guest by Shari Lapena (4 of 5 stars)
You May Now Kill the Bride by R.L. Stine (4 of 5 stars)
Stars Uncharted by S.K. Dunstall (3.5 of 5 stars)
The Unfortunates by Kim Liggett (3 of 5 stars)
Temper by Nicky Drayden (2 of 5 stars)
What I’ve Read Since the Last Update
Here’s what I’ve managed to “unstack” from the TBR since the last update. A couple of these reviews are up already, but more coming soon!
Have you heard of or read any of the books featured this week? What caught your eye? Any new discoveries? I hope you found something interesting for a future read! Let me know what you plan on checking out. Until next time, see you next Roundup!