May ended up being an odd month for reading. It was an odd month for a number of things, but reading was at the top of the list. I feel as though I didn’t read a damn thing, but when I look at my returned library books and my Goodreads shelves, well, obviously I read something.
Tricked Kevin Hearne – If I’d had Kevin Hearne as my high school English teacher, I never would have skipped a class and my homework would have been done on time, every time. Tricked picks up shortly after Hammered, with Atticus faking his own death to avoid numerous thunder gods. He’s had to strike a deal with Coyote in order to do so, and any time Coyote’s involved, you know there’s going to be shenanigans. Peppered with Hearne’s by now familiar humor and tidbits of mythology (he delves more into the mythology of the Navajo in this book), the story is almost overshadowed by Atticus’ interactions with Oberon, his wolfhound. Not that this is a bad thing. “Bacon is the Truth and the Way!” I couldn’t agree more, Oberon.
The Buddha in the Attic Julie Otsuka – Buddha tells the story of picture brides sent from Japan, their trials, their triumphs, their sorrow and joys, above all, the mendacity of their lives that they thought would be better than they could have had in Japan. Using the “we” format to an effect I haven’t seen since Ayn Rand’s Anthem, Buddha is a slim, lovely, lyrical narrative (I hesitate to call it a novel) that, by the end, makes you feel ashamed for the actions of our country.
Shadow Kin MJ Scott – Mages and blood drinkers and Templars, oh my! Lily, an assassin, is sent to kill Simon DuCaine, a sunmage. When he turns the tables and ties her to a chair, he offers to help her escape the Blood Lord she’s essentially enslaved by. Scott’s created an interesting world, a place where shifters, vampires, fae, and humans all coexist, although not necessarily peacefully. It dragged a bit in the middle, but over all, a fun, fast read that made me glad the next one in the series (Blood Kin) is out soon. Oh yeah, and the cover art totally kicks ass.
Three Novellas Leo Tolstoy – I have this theory about classic literature. Before I tackle one of the massive tomes the author has written, I’ll pick up a collection of short stories. I have no way of knowing if Novellas is indicative of Tolstoy’s work as a whole, but as far as Russian literature is concerned, it fits right in. It’s depressing. Even with a title like Family Happiness (the second novella), you’d think you’re in for something warm and fuzzy. Not quite. It’s not all doom and gloom, but I found myself despairing halfway through it, wondering if all the characters were going to end up hanging their heads in sorrow. Though they were quick and fairly easy to digest, I don’t think I’m going to be picking up War and Peace any time soon.