Funny how time goes by. One minute it’s July, the next the month of Halloween and pre-NaNoWriMo-panic is here.
Yes, October and November has always been a busy time for me. Between uni and exams, NaNoWriMo, book and film releases, the resurrection of autumn TV shows, and gearing up on chocolate for the winter, there’s ever hardly any time to rest. Though I have no university or tests this year, there are always other secret projects under my sleeve (plus the never-ending search for a job)… Yes, breathing space is scarce so, of course, I decided to join in on something else: Booktober.
Booktober is organised by the fantastic Carrie Hope Fletcher.
In a nutshell, everyone picks four books (Carrie’s choices or different) and reads one of them per week. Then everyone takes to social media to discuss the books they’ve read.
Though Carrie picked some I’ve wanted to read for a very long time (looking at you Eleanor and Park), the truth is I have a tonne of ARCs to go through, and a few other books I’ve neglected. Finishing my undergraduate this year got me very behind there. As such, these are my four books for Booktober:
The Diamond Thief by Sharon Gosling
276 pages, 7th October 2014, Capstone Switch Press, BookDepository, NetGalley
No one performs on the circus trapeze like 16-year-old Rémy Brunel. But Rémy also leads another life, prowling through the backstreets of Victorian London as a jewel thief. When she is forced to steal one of the world’s most valuable diamonds, she uncovers a world of treachery and fiendish plots.
Meanwhile, young detective Thaddeus Rec is determined to find the jewel and clear his name. Will Thaddeus manage to rescue the jewel? Or is it really Rémy that he needs to save?
Personal sidenote: I haven’t read a novel of this sort in a while, and this sounds like something exciting. Can’t wait to get started on it!
The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan (The Heroes of Olympus #5)
528 pages, 7th October 2014, Disney Hyperion, BookDepository, Personal
Though the Greek and Roman crewmembers of the Argo II have made progress in their many quests, they still seem no closer to defeating the earth mother, Gaea. Her giants have risen—all of them—and they’re stronger than ever. They must be stopped before the Feast of Spes, when Gaea plans to have two demigods sacrificed in Athens. She needs their blood—the blood of Olympus—in order to wake.
The demigods are having more frequent visions of a terrible battle at Camp Half-Blood. The Roman legion from Camp Jupiter, led by Octavian, is almost within striking distance. Though it is tempting to take the Athena Parthenos to Athens to use as a secret weapon, the friends know that the huge statue belongs back on Long Island, where it “might” be able to stop a war between the two camps.
The Athena Parthenos will go west; the Argo II will go east. The gods, still suffering from multiple personality disorder, are useless. How can a handful of young demigods hope to persevere against Gaea’s army of powerful giants? As dangerous as it is to head to Athens, they have no other option. They have sacrificed too much already. And if Gaea wakes, it is game over.
Personal sidenote: I am so not ready for this. Something tells me the feels will be plenty. One thing is for sure, I’ll be shaking in my boots the whole while! I’m sure all Rick Riordan fans will know why.
We Will All Go Down Together by Gemma Files
350 pages, 26th August 2014, ChiZine, BookDepository, NetGalley
Every family has its monsters…and some are nothing but In the woods outside Overdeere, Ontario, there are trees that speak, a village that doesn’t appear on any map, and a hill that opens wide, entrapping unwary travellers.
Music drifts up from deep underground, while dreams — and nightmares — take on solid shape, flitting through the darkness. It’s a place most people usually know better than to go, at least locally — until tonight, when five bloodlines mired in ancient strife will finally converge once more.
Devize, Glouwer, Rusk, Druir, Roke — these are the clans who make up the notorious Five-Family Coven. Four hundred years ago, this alliance of witches, changelings, and sorcerers sought to ruin and recreate the Earth in their own image, thwarted only by treachery that sent half of them to be burned alive.
Driven apart by rage and hatred, their descendants have continued to feud, intermarry, and breed with each other throughout the centuries, their mutual dislike becoming ever more destructively intimate. But now, from downtown Toronto to the wilds beyond, where reality’s walls grow thin, dark forces are drawing the Coven’s last heirs to a final confrontation.
Psychics, ex-possessees, defrocked changeling priests, shamans for hire, body-stealing witches, and monster-slaying nuns — the bastard children of a thousand evil angels — all are haunted by a ghost beyond any one person’s power to exorcize unless they agree to stand together once more — at least long enough to wreak vengeance upon themselves!
Personal sidenote: “Psychics, ex-possessees, defrocked changeling priests, shamans for hire, body-stealing witches, and monster-slaying nuns”? Oh my! Count me in!
Night of Pan by Gail Strickland (The Oracle of Delphy Trilogy #1)
254 pages, November 7th 2014, Curiosity Quills Press, Amazon, NetGalley
The slaughter of the Spartan Three Hundred at Thermopylae, Greece 480 BCE—when King Leonidas tried to stop the Persian army with only his elite guard—is well known. But just what did King Xerxes do after he defeated the Greeks?
Fifteen-year-old Thaleia is haunted by visions: roofs dripping blood, Athens burning. She tries to convince her best friend and all the villagers that she’s not crazy. The gods do speak to her.
And the gods have plans for this girl.
When Xerxes’ army of a million Persians marches straight to the mountain village Delphi to claim the Temple of Apollo’s treasures and sacred power, Thaleia’s gift may be her people’s last line of defense.
Her destiny may be to save Greece…
….but is one girl strong enough to stop an entire army?
Personal sidenote: Although the last question makes me want to scream back “yes! of course she is!” and ramble about feminism, I am willing to set it aside and dive into this head start. I do have a thing for Greek and Roman mythology, after all, and this… well, it sounds bloody cool.
Between these books, I’ll also be finishing up “A Song for Ella Grey” by David Almond (beautiful writing), “Praesagium” by John Metcalfe (gritty characters and a curious beginning), and “Jackaby” by William Ritter (detectives plus supernatural plus times gone by turned delicious).
Let’s hope I can read all of these in the following 31 days and life doesn’t drop a bomb on me in the meantime!
How about you? Are you joining Booktober? What’ll you be reading this month?