Thoughts on My June 2022 Reading

estimated 6 min read

I feel that I mostly misplaced the month of June. This is for the same reasons as every other month for the past few years. Yet, somehow, I managed to read 17 books, most as text and several as audiobooks. A quick reminder, if I list hours that means I actually listened to the audiobook in whole or part as I try to switch between audio and text.

If you want to jump to a specific subject, I can now generate a nifty little table of contents:

Urban Fantasy

Iron Druid Chronicles: Shattered (#7, 2014, 352 pages), Staked (#8, 2016, 310 pages), Scourged (#9, 2018, 268 pages) by Kevin Hearne. I finished my first reread of the series in several yeras. It started to drag with books 7 and 8, and the final book I enjoy for the grown of Owen and Granuaile. As for Atticus? I could skip those parts and come away just as content, as long as I got my Oberon slobbery fix. I think the arc grew bigger than most of the myths it relies on and it’s not the best of endings, but it is a conclusion. It’s held up ok over the years, and I love Hearne’s wordplay.

Rivers of London Series: Amongst Our Weapons (#9, 2022, 304 pages / 11 hours audiobook) by Ben Aaronvitch. It’s a fun series. Unfortunately, I forgot many details of the prior book and it felt like it was dragging a bit. It’s still a good read and a way to pretend I’m traveling right now; I miss London.

Science Fiction/Space Opera

Crudrat: The Tinkered Stars (2022, 274 pages / 7 hours audiobook) by Gail Carriger. This was originally published in 2014 and was just rereleased. The audio book was AMAZING to listen to. The entire story grabbed me, and I want to reread it again right this moment.

The Final Architecture Series: Shards of Earth (#1, 2021, 561 pages / 19 hours audiobook) by Adrian Tchaikovsky. I hadn’t realized this was a new series. It took a bit to get into and understand relationships and the worlds, but I’m already wanting to read more.

Science Fiction/Parallel Worlds

The Space Between Worlds (2022, 336 pages) by Micaiah Johnson. I don’t remember how I found this ebook title at the library, but I’m =happy I did. It’s a very fascinating multiverse story with twists and turns I really enjoyed.

Poetry

Call Us What We Carry (2021, 228 pages / 4 hours audiobook) by Amanda Gorman. I’m not in love with every poem, the entire collection is one to savor. Gorman’s voice both as audiobook narrator and as poet is very enjoyable.

Mystery/Thriller

Kay Scarpetta Series: Postmortem (#1, 1990, 342 pages / 11 hours audiobook), Body of Evidence (#2, 1991, 403 pages), All That Remains (#3, 1992, 373 pages) by Patricia Cornwell. I thought I’d read the first bookof this series ages ago. If I had, I guess I never finished. Why? The ending was completely different from what I had in my head. Why have I kept reading? I’m loving the nostalgia of the 90s, the gritty vibe (smoking everywhere!) and the technology (pagers and pay phones). Will I keep reading? I’ve already finished the fourth book.

The Anomaly (2021, 391 pages / 11 hours audiobook) by Hervé Le Tellier, Adriana Hunter (Translator) Oh my wow, this title deserves all the awards. I read part of the first chapter in French last summer. That was far beyond my current language comprehension, so I switched back to English. I kept checking it out from the library but couldn’t get past the second or third chapter for a while – it was too disjointed, and I wasn’t sure how it all went into one book. I finally borrowed the audiobook and it helped me to push through, slowly it built up and the different parts made a bit of sense. Then, like clouds parting after a violent storm, it all came together. Wow.

In Death Series: Forgotten in Death (#53, 2021, 384 pages), Abandoned in Death (#54, 2022, 368 pages) by J.D. Robb. I saved these for a time when I knew I’d need an easy read. It feels like I checked in with friends. I’ve seen a few complaints in reviews about how certain repetitive details of Eve’s life are described. If you were to read all 54 books at back-to-back, it might be frustrating. I think for anyone with an ACE score over 4, the concern of Roark for Eve to eat and take care of herself as well as others, might bring comfort.

Vanessa Michael Munroe Series: The Innocent (#2, 2012, 331 pages) by Taylor Stevens. I didn’t enjoy it as much as the first book, perhaps because of the explicitness of the childhood abuse. Not as good as her first book, but one that stopped me and had me thinking about plausibility more than once.

Memoir

Crying in H Mart (2021, 256 pages / 7 hours audiobook) by Michelle Zauner. While the spark for Zauner’s memoir isn’t positive — cancer sucks; her writing and experiences make this an enjoyable memoir to read. I expected to find a few similarities with my own experiences, I’m still unsure if it was comforting or not when I realized how much of our lives seemed the same to me.

Still Just a Geek: An Annotated Memoir (2022, 436 pages) by Wil Wheaton. In a complicated manner, I was able to watch the series when it aired in the 90s and related to Wheaton’s character – I was often the only child/teen around adults [Why is for another post]. I enjoy Wheaton’s writing and admire his strong support for mental health awareness as well as for childhood traumas (ACE scores). But again, all that is for another time and post. Why did I read this memoir? I’m a sucker for anything annotated, and this title did not disappoint. It’s a fun trip to the early 2000s as well as seeing Wheaton’s growth both as a writer and a human being.


So far July is shaping up to be very much like June but with extra everything on top, sort of like unrequested sprinkles on an otherwise wonderful cone of ice cream. I’m taking what moments I can to relax amid the chaos. I’m rereading the first two books of Kevin Hearne’s Seven Kenning’s series. It begins with A Plague of Giants, I borrowed the audiobook recording and was surprised to find that for this first volume it is twenty-two hours! Please don’t be daunted, the story is written (and told) in a way that allows for small quick dips or longer passes. I’m finding I relate differently to it in today’s world, especially the ongoing global refugee crisis (please help as you can). The third book of the series is due out later this summer.

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