Now that the house net is back up and stable again, and I’m on a three-day weekend where I don’t have to worry about things being on fire at the day job, I have the time to dig back through my inbox and get caught up on tallying my ebook purchases!
This post will cover the tail end of 2021’s purchases and also lay down the initial ones for 2022.
Purchased from Kobo in 2021:
A Marvellous Light, by Freya Marske. Book 1 of The Last Binding. Fantasy set in Edwardian England, with a side of M/M romance. Nabbed because of seeing positive buzz for it on Tor.com
Comfort Me With Apples, by Catherynne M. Valente. Nabbed this because I’ve read and enjoyed quite a bit of her work, and the idea of her doing a gaslit-wife kind of thriller is intriguing.
The Wolf and the Woodsman, by Ava Reid. Fantasy. Nabbed this because it was on sale at the time, for $1.99. Also, because fantasy influenced by Hungarian mythology sounded potentially fun and different.
Murder on Black Swan Lane, by Andrea Penrose. Mystery. Book 1 of Wrexford & Sloane. Nabbed this because I’d originally seen buzz about it on Smart Bitches as a period British-set mystery, a genre I generally enjoy. Tried to check it out from the library but never started reading it before the checkout ran out, so I just went ahead and bought it.
State of Terror, by Louise Penny and Hillary Rodham Clinton. (Yes, that Hillary Clinton.) Thriller. Nabbed this because I like Louise Penny’s writing and was legit curious about how a thriller Hillary Clinton is involved with would turn out. Started reading it as a library book, but the library checkout ran out, so I just bought the thing so I could finish it.
The Scholars of Night, by John M. Ford. Another thriller, a newer edition of this book as a bunch of Ford’s backlist has been re-published since his death. Dara started reading this one in print and liked it, so this was another one I checked out first from the library and then just decided to go ahead and buy.
Home: Habitat, Range, Niche, Territory, by Martha Wells. SF. This is a short story about Murderbot! Bought because Murderbot. <3
Sisters of the Vast Black, by Lina Rather. SF. Our Lady of Endless Worlds #1. Nabbed this because I kept hearing good things about it, so finally picked it up.
Akata Witch, by Nnedi Okorafor. Fantasy. Book 1 of her Nsibidi Scripts series, and YA. Nabbed this because it was on sale for $2.99 at the time, and also because I want to read more SF/F out of the African diaspora. And, it has a gorgeous cover.
Sisters in Arms, by Kaia Alderson. Historical fiction. Another book I initially started reading as a library checkout, but the checkout ran out, so I just bought it. This is a story about a regiment of Black women serving during WWII and I’m here for that!
Last Night at the Telegraph Club, by Malinda Lo. Historical fiction/romance, and specifically queer, F/F romance between two young women, set during the Red Scare in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Very interested to see how this’ll read. I quite liked this author’s book Huntress, too.
Purchased from Kobo in 2022:
West End Earl, by Bethany Bennett. Historical romance. Book 2 of Misfits of Mayfair. Nabbed this because it got talked up on Smart Bitches for having a gorgeous cover and really, I agree. I love the use of yellow on the cover art, which makes it bright and cheerful, and that’s a thing I really need in my life right now! And, the summary seemed fun, as did the sample I read on Kobo’s site.
Purchased from Amazon in 2022:
Vessel of Starfire and The Last Witch Queen, by Allison Carr Waechter. YA Fantasy. Books 1 and 2 of the Outlaws of Interra trilogy. Nabbed these because the first one’s cover was called out on Smart Bitches on a Cover Awe post, and I agreed it was lovely! Plus I wanted to pick these up for F/F romance goodness. And I bought both of them because they were nice and cheap!
Dangerous Ground and Crash Site, by Fiona Carver. Thriller. Books 1 and 2 of the Fiona Carver series. Nabbed these again because of a Smart Bitches Cover Awe post, and because the individual titles of the series were not expensive.
The Raven Spell, by Luanne G. Smith. Fantasy, Book 1 of Conspiracy of Magic. Nabbed this because I saw an ad for it, and because it sounds like fun, particularly with a hook about a hero who’s had his memory rattled around by an attack and needs help from the heroine to find out who targeted him.
Took a backhoe to my gigantic email backlog yesterday, and that included dealing with receipts from assorted ebook purchases and getting those files incorporated into my Calibre library! Here now are those books, rounded up.
Acquired from Kobo:
Aetherbound, by E.K. Johnston. SF/YA. Got this one mostly because I really liked the cover design, and when i read a sample, I found it engaging enough that I’d like to see where the story goes. I like the central story concept of a traveling generation ship where the crew is successive generations of the same family, and the heroine being a young daughter of this family who wants out.
Iron Widow, by Xiran Jay Zhao. SF/YA. This seems a mix of Chinese mythos, bunches of anime of the “mecha powered by pilots” type, and Pacific Rim. The heroine is a young woman in a culture where females serve as the “concubine/pilots” for male pilots of mecha, and are frequently killed by the strain of the psychic link these pairings require. Only our heroine, a so-called “iron widow”, is capable of turning that psychic link around and taking out her male copilots instead. I’m here for it.
Hands of the Emperor and Stargazy Pie, by Victoria Goddard. Fantasy. Bought both of these on the strength of this article on Tor.com, which speaks very glowingly of this author’s work. And from what I see here, there’s a lot of Anna bait in her stories.
The Anatomist’s Wife, by Anna Lee Huber. Mystery. Got this one when I saw it come up as on sale via one of Smart Bitches Trashy Books’ sale posts.
We Shall Sing a Song Into the Deep, by Andrew Kelly Stewart. SF. This is post-apocalyptic so I’m not sure how much of a headspace I’m going to have to read this any time soon, but that said, I’m intrigued by the idea of the crew of the last nuclear submarine on the planet turning into a religious sect bent on firing their last missile to trigger the Second Coming. And the protagonist is a young girl kidnapped and raised into the crew as one of their Choristers, only nobody realizes she’s female.
When Two Feathers Fell From the Sky, by Margaret Verble. This seems to be a magic-realism type story, or what I’d be calling historical urban fantasy if it was getting sold under the SF/F bracket of stories. But it’s getting marketed as general fiction, so…? Period piece with a Native American heroine at a carnival.
Piranesi, by Susanna Clarke. Grabbed this on the strength of this being the next book by the author of Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell. I have already read it; I got it as a library checkout, and then decided I wanted to own my own copy. It’s not nearly as long as its predecessor, and it’s not terribly heavy on action–but it is rich on imagery and theme and characters. Very glad I read it.
Pre-orders that showed up:
Grave Reservations, by Cherie Priest
Noor, by Nnedi Okorafor
You Feel It Just Below the Ribs, by Jeffrey Cranor and Janina Matthewson
This is another one of those days when I look at my overflowing inbox and go geez woman get caught up on your email, why don’t you?
So this is me reviewing my various backlogged ebook purchase receipts!
Acquired from Kobo:
The Infernal City and Lord of Souls, which are the two Elder Scrolls novels written by Greg Keyes, released back in 2009 and 2011. The events in them apparently take place between what happens in Oblivion, and what happens in Skyrim. For the interested, more info on the novels can be found on the wiki I follow for my Skyrim playthroughs, here.
Bombshell, by Sarah MacLean. Romance. Grabbed this one because I’ve read a different historical romance series by this author and enjoyed it! And also, this review on Smart Bitches, even though they gave it a B-, made it sound fun.
The Luminous Dead, by Caitlin Starling. SF/Horror. Nabbed this because it went on sale for $1.99, and because I’ve seen good buzz about it. Taking a shot on it because it’s pitched as a gripping SF/horror story with a fairly fucked-up level of interaction between the two female protagonists.
The Mysterious Affair at Styles, by Agatha Christie. Mystery. This is the first Hercule Poirot novel, which I’ve never read. Nabbed it because it was a new edition of the book, on sale for $2.99, and because I really like the cover St. Martin’s Press put on it. (You can see that cover here on the Kobo page for the ebook.)
Pre-ordered from Kobo:
Noor, by Nnedi Okorafor. SF. Got this because I’ve definitely enjoyed work by this author before. And buzz going around about this book made it sound like something I want to pick up.
The Thousand Eyes, by A.K. Larkwood. Fantasy. This is book 2 of the author’s Serpent Gates series. I really liked Book 1, The Unspoken Name, for splendid worldbuilding, a compelling F/F romance, and an orc heroine! Very much looking forward to this one.
Acquired from Amazon:
Bacchanal, by Veronica G. Henry. Depression-era historical fantasy/horror mix, with a story about a demonic carnival. (If this sounds interesting to you, note that this was an Amazon-only release, in case this is a dealbreaker for you purchasing it.)
Easy Pickings, by C.E. Murphy and Faith Hunter. Urban fantasy. This is crossover fic for the Walker Papers and Jane Yellowrock series, written by the authors themselves, in which they set up a scenario where their heroines can actually meet. Awesome. Sign me up!
Geez, this post has been sitting in my Drafts folder for quite some time! I have no particular excuse for this, other than just being very, very lax on getting this post written up! But since I’ve started doing all the Skyrim posts, seeing my Drafts folder on my WordPress site kept reminding me this post was there, and ever so patiently waiting for me to deal with it.
Let’s deal with it now, shall we?
Acquired from Kobo:
Hidden Figures, by Margot Lee Shetterly. This is the book on which the movie of the same name was based, and I bought it on the strength of the buzz about the movie.
Unconquerable Sun, by Kate Elliott. SF/Space Opera. Also, a lesbian version of the saga of Alexander the Great IN SPACE, as I understand it. SIGN ME UP.
Death of a New American, by Mariah Fredericks. Book 2 of a mystery series I’d already bought Book 1 for.
Stealing Thunder and Gifting Fire, by Alina Boyden. Books 1 and 2 of a fantasy series featuring a transgendered heroine.
A Peculiar Combination, by Ashley Weaver. Book 1 of a historical mystery series featuring a heroine whose lockpicking talents get her drafted into supporting Britain during WWII.
Mirage and Spectrum, by Julie E. Czerneda. SF. Books 2 and 3 of the Web-Shifter’s Library series.
The Galaxy, and the Ground Within, by Becky Chambers. SF. Book 4 of Chambers’ Wayfarers series. And, I’m given to understand, the last one!
Acquired from Amazon:
Wings of Fury, by Emily R. King. Fantasy set in the time of Greek myth.
The Dispatcher, by John Scalzi. SF/mystery. Ebook version of the audiobook of the same name, which I’ve already listened to and enjoyed. Nabbed this just because I’m a completist, and because the audiobook for Book 2 came out.
Spacer’s Cinderella, by Adria Rose. SF/Romance, Space Opera. As you might guess from the title, a version of the Cinderella story set in space.
Acquired from Audible (which also essentially means, acquired from Amazon, but I’m counting this differently):
Murder By Other Means, by John Scalzi. The aforementioned Book 2 audiobook for John Scalzi’s Dispatcher series. Like Book 1, this is narrated by Zachary Quinto.
Kobo pre-orders that showed up:
The Conductors, by Nicole Glover. Historical fantasy set during the 1800’s, with heavy Underground Railroad themes in the plot.
Fugitive Telemetry, by Martha Wells. The next Murderbot book. Yes please, I’ll have some!
While Justice Sleeps, by Stacey Abrams. A Supreme Court thriller written by Stacey Abrams. Yes, that Stacey Abrams. She’s got an established career as an author but with this book, she’s writing under her actual name rather than the pen name she uses for her romances, Selena Montgomery.
Amazon pre-orders that showed up:
Heartbreak Bay, by Rachel Caine. Book 5 (and final, due to Caine’s passing away) of the Stillhouse Lake series of thrillers.
Kobo pre-orders I’ve placed:
You Feel It Just Below the Ribs, by Jeffrey Cranor and Janina Matthewson. Prequel novel to the Within the Wires podcast, which I’ve enjoyed quite a bit.
Acquired for free from Tor.com:
When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain, by Nghi Vo. Fantasy. Book 2 of the Singing Hills Cycle series, and I really ought to nab Book 1 before I read this, I think!
Acquired as a Kickstarter reward:
Daughter of the Lilies. Fantasy, graphic novel release of the excellent webcomic of the same name that I’ve been following at daughterofthelilies.com. The author and colorist teamed up to put out a print edition of the first storyline they’ve done, and I was a backer for their Kickstarter.
Fugitive Telemetry, by Martha Wells. SF. Specifically, her next Murderbot book, and OF COURSE I want more Murderbot!
Acquired from Kobo:
Alice Isn’t Dead, by Joseph Fink. This is the novelization of the story from the podcast of the same name, from one of the two masterminds of Welcome to Night Vale. I liked the podcast version of this story quite a bit and look forward to reading the novel adaptation of same.
The Space Between Worlds, by Micaiah Johnson. SF. Nabbed this because it sounds like an interesting parallel-worlds type thriller, and because it was on sale for $1.99 as of the time of my purchase.
Winter’s Orbit, by Everina Maxwell. SF/Space Opera. Nabbed this one because it’s been getting good buzz, and because it’s a queer romance/space opera type scenario, and because I really rather like the tagline on the cover.
A History of What Comes Next, by Sylvain Neuvel. SF. Nabbed this one because I’ve enjoyed other work by this author, and because the period-set SF vibe appeals to me after having had great fun reading Mary Robinette Kowal’s recent work in that realm.
Fireheart Tiger, by Aliette de Bodard. Fantasy. Nabbing this because F/F romance and also because my word that cover is gorgeous.
Nights of the Living Dead, by various authors. Zombies! As one might guess from the title, this is influenced by Night of the Living Dead, and it is in fact an anthology telling assorted stories set in the 48-hour period of time covered by that very movie. There is an intro by George Romero in it. And, as should surprise exactly no one, there is a story by Mira Grant/Seanan McGuire in it too. This will hopefully be fun!
The Book of Earth, The Book of Water, The Book of Fire, and The Book of Air, by Marjorie B. Kellogg. Fantasy. These are the four books of Kellogg’s Dragon Quartet series. I bought Book 1 of this and read it ages ago, and eventually picked up book 2 and an omnibus of books 3 and 4 in print, but I have yet to read any of them. I nabbed all four titles in ebook on the theory that I might actually read them if I have them on the Kindle. Let’s find out!
Remnant Population, by Elizabeth Moon. SF. Nabbed this one because it showed up in a roundup by James Nicoll on Tor.com of books featuring isolation as a theme–and because the protagonist is an old woman, a rarity even today in the genre.
Soulstar, by C.L. Polk. Fantasy. Book 3 of her Kingston Cycle, which i am very much looking forward to reading.
Pre-orders that I placed:
Grave Reservations, by Cherie Priest. This is Priest’s mystery debut, but given that the heroine is a psychic, it’s clearly going to be a mystery with paranormal elements. Sign me the fuck up.
And, acquired from Kobo because I was in a mood to expand this author’s presence in my library:
A Madness in Spring, The Dress of the Season, The Game and the Governess, The Lie and the Lady, The Dare and the Doctor, and Miss Goodhue Lives for a Night, all by Kate Noble. All historical romance. A couple of these are standalones, a couple of them are novellas, and all of them are ones I look forward to reading. Noble’s on the short list of authors who historical romances I have actively enjoyed, and I’ll look forward to checking out more of her work.
(Note also for anyone besides me who likes reading historical romance: A Madness in Spring and The Dress of the Season were both available for free on Kobo, where I got them. You may wish to consult your ebook vendor of choice to see if you can get them for free as well, if you want to check out this author.)
The Lord of Stariel, by A.J. Lancaster. Fantasy with strong romantic subplot. Got this on the strength of this review over on Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.
Amended total for 2020: 162
Acquired from Kobo:
The Mask of Mirrors, by M.A. Carrick. Fantasy. Got this in no small part because M.A. Carrick is a pen name for a pair of authors doing a collaboration, and one of those authors is Marie Brennan, whose Lady Trent series I adore. Plus, they have an individual going by the name of ‘Rook’ in their plot, and as anyone who’s read my Rebels books or who ever played with me on AetherMUSH knows, I am rather partial to that particular sobriquet.
Geez, this post was sitting in my drafts section of my WordPress for ages. Oops. Let’s see if I can get this finally posted, okay?
Acquired from Kobo during the end of 2020:
Hench, by Natalie Zina Walschots. SF/Superheroes. Grabbed this once I saw buzz going around about it from the Bitchery, because it sounds awesome: a story about a young woman in a superhero world driven to serious injury as collateral damage in a fight between heroes and supervillains–and nobody cares because she was temping for the villain at the time. So she starts using her own strong talent for data gathering to show how ordinary people are being harmed by the superheroes, until she winds up being a top supervillain’s second in command. I’m here for this!
Secrets and Lies, Reckless, Never Tell, Hidden Sins, and Deception, by Selena Montgomery. All romance/romantic suspense, by Stacey Abrams under her pen name of Selena Montgomery. Bought on general “because damn, Stacey Abrams has been awesome the last several years” grounds.
All Together Now, by Alan Doyle. This is Alan’s most recent book talking about his history with Great Big Sea and his life in general. Bought for general “duh, because ALAN” reasons that any Great Big Sea fan will certainly understand.
Goldilocks, by Laura Lam. SF. Grabbed this because I liked the last SF novel I read by this author, because this is a plot featuring women, and because the plot in general sounded intriguing.
The Last Emperox, by John Scalzi. SF. Nabbed because it was on sale at the time, and because it’s book 3 of his Interdependency series. I liked Book 1 and will look forward to reading this one.
Pre-ordered from Kobo during 2020:
While Justice Sleeps, by Stacey Abrams. Forthcoming thriller, this time written under her actual name. Bought on same general grounds of “because Abrams is awesome”.
Acquired from Amazon during 2020:
The Psychology of Time Travel, by Kate Mascarenhas.
Acquired from Kobo during 2021:
The Key to All Things and The Chocolatier’s Ghost, by Cindy Lynn Speer. Gotten because Cindy is a fellow former Drollerie author, and because I quite loved The Chocolatier’s Wife.
The Year of the Witching, by Alexis Henderson. I’ve seen a lot of buzz about this one over the last several months, both on Smart Bitches and Tor.com.
The Once and Future Witches, by Alix E. Harrow.
Spoiler Alert, by Olivia Dade. Romance by an author I’ve heard about via Smart Bitches, Olivia Dade, and one of whose books I’ve already read as a library checkout. She seems to have a nice trend going in her books of larger heroines, and plus this particular book is heavily fannish as well.
Girl, Serpent, Thorn, by Melissa Bashardoust.
Acquired from Amazon during 2021:
Subversive, Radical, and Revolutionary, by Colleen Cowley. Fantasy trilogy. Nabbed this entire trilogy because of this review over on Smart Bitches!
Acquired as birthday gifts this very weekend as I write this post:
Middle-Earth: Journeys in Myth and Legend, by Donato Giancola. Wanted this because I’ve seen this man’s art come up again and again in discussions of the Tolkien legendarium, particularly on Tor.com. They have a lovely profile and interview of him over here. And the artist’s own page is here.
1000 airs du Québec et de l’Amérique francophone, by Olivier Demers. if you’ve hung around my site long enough to know how big a Le Vent du Nord fan I am, and also that I’m a fiddle padawan, you’ll know why I had to nab this songbook of tunes from the Quebecois repertoire by one of my top favorite fiddle players from the province. I will very, very much look forward to delving into this in depth. :D
The entire Themis Files trilogy (Sleeping Giants, Waking Gods, and Only Human) by Sylvain Neuvel. SF. Grabbed this because I got book 1 as a freebie a while back in paperback, and I liked it, and the ebook went on sale. So I went ahead and got all three of them.
Beach Read, by Emily Henry. Contemporary romance. Grabbed this because Smart Bitches reviewed it quite positively, and while I don’t normally read contemporaries, this sounded kind of delightful. In no small part because of the schtick of both the heroine and hero being writers and challenging each other to write each other’s genres.
The Duke Who Didn’t, by Courtney Milan. Historical romance. Acquired for general “because Courtney Milan” reasons, but also, I’m quite interested to see how she sets up a historical set in Britain but with protagonists of color.
The Case of the Missing Marquess, by Nancy Springer. Book 1 of her Enola Holmes series, which I nabbed since we just watched the new movie adaptation on Netflix. I found it quite charming, and the ebook was on sale for $2.99, so I snapped it up.
Acquired from Amazon:
Chaos Reigning, by Jessie Mihalik. Book 3 of her Consortium Rebellion series, sci-fi romance. Nabbed it because it went on sale price and I did like book 1, so.
And last but not least, acquired from John Scalzi:
Clash of the Geeks, by John Scalzi and other authors. Chapbook parody fantasy, with stories explaining exactly what’s going on in a painting depicting Scalzi as an orc, fighting Wil Wheaton who’s riding a unicorn pegasus kitten. As you do! Scalzi posted about it on his Whatever blog, and offered freebie copies of the chapbook to readers, so I took him up on that. Because this year? This year definitely calls for some supremely silly reading.
Found a draft of an ebook roundup post marooned in my Drafts folder, oops. So I’m merging a couple of earlier acquired titles with more recently acquired titles in this post now!
Acquired from Kobo:
Devolution, by Max Brooks. Horror. I nabbed this on the strength of the name Max Brooks, since I totally adored World War Z. I can also report that I’ve actually gone ahead and read this since I originally bought it. I did not like this one as much as I liked World War Z, but I’m not sorry I read it. I still found it an enjoyable read, even though I was a little disappointed that it wasn’t nearly as brilliant as his first book.
Prince of Shadows, by Rachel Caine. Fantasy, alternate telling of Romeo and Juliet. Nabbed this in no small part because Caine is dealing with serious cancer treatments right now and I wanted to try to buy more of her titles in support.
Honor Among Thieves, Honor Bound, and Honor Lost, by Rachel Caine and Ann Aguirre. SF YA. Nabbed this entire trilogy partly because see previous commentary re: Caine, but also because I also like Ann Aguirre’s work and the two of them together promise to be entertaining.
Pre-ordered from Kobo:
Soulstar and The Midnight Bargain, by C.L. Polk. Fantasy. Grabbed both of these because I quite liked Witchmark, and Soulstar is the closing book of that trilogy.
Acquired from Amazon:
Bitter Falls, by Rachel Caine. Book 4 of her Stillhouse Lake series of thrillers. Acquired from Amazon because the series is available in ebook only for Kindle.
Pre-ordered from Amazon:
Heartbreak Bay, by Rachel Caine. Book 5 of her Stillhouse Lake series of thrillers.
Previous pre-orders that showed up but which I’ve counted on the yearly tally already: