I’m a prolific reader – usually devouring anywhere from two
to five books a week.
My tastes vary wildly – but I usually follow a general
schedule: One heavy book to be immediately followed by three light-hearted
It’s not that I don’t like reading profound books – because I
I like reading literary fluff too, though.
I’m multi-dimensional weird that way.
While I know a lot of readers have jumped on the ‘Fifty
Shades of Grey’ bandwagon, I’m not one of them.
Quite frankly, I’ve read better prose from a middle-schooler
and I’ve heard better stories from a lying teenager caught out with a boy after
It’s just not my cup of tea.
It’s not that I don’t like hot and steamy love stories – I just
like them to have a little substance sometimes. Heck, I’ll settle for a romance
story to be formatted around a mystery – paranormal or otherwise.
I’m not picky. I just don’t like crap – and ‘Fifty Shades of
Gray’ is complete and total crap.
Instead of telling you what you should read, though, I
decided on a different tact. I’m just going to tell you what I’m reading this
The good news is that I’ve already blew through a couple of
these. The better news is that I still have plenty to look forward.
So, without further ado, my summer reading list:
Shadow of Night: Deborah Harkness’ debut novel ‘A Discovery
of Witches’ took the literary world by storm last summer. It wasn’t perfect –
but very little is. It was entertaining, though, and well worth the time
expended in the read. This is a follow up, essentially the middle book in her
All Souls Trilogy. Note to readers: These are not short books. If you’re
looking for a quick read, you should probably look elsewhere. ‘Shadow of Night’
comes out July 10.
Lethal Outlook: Victoria Laurie is an author that used to
live in Royal Oak. Her Psychic Eye series – featuring clairvoyant Abby and her
federal investigator boyfriend Dutch – spent several years set in Royal Oak in
fact. This latest installment sees the couple living in their new digs in Texas
and planning a wedding. I enjoy the Psychic Eye series a great deal – but Laurie
is better to keep her characters a little grounded. Last year’s book in the
series saw the couple working undercover for the government. It was by far the
weakest entry in the series. Still, one bad book isn’t enough for me to abandon
Laurie as an author. Let’s hope ‘Lethal Outlook,’ which comes out July 3, is an
In a Witch’s Wardrobe: I came to the Juliet Blackwell
witchcraft series late. Essentially, I only discovered it last year. Despite
this fact, though, I quickly fell in love with heroine Lily Ivory and her
gaggle of friends that frequent her vintage west coast clothing store. It’s
still early in the Blackwell series – so nothing seems tired to me in it yet.
This book also comes out July 3.
Undead and Unstable: This book came out earlier this month
(June 5). I’ve been a fan of the Queen Betsy books for awhile. MaryJanice
Davidson is gifted when it comes to dialogue. Sometimes her books suffer from a
lack of forethought, though. This book would be an example of that. I still
enjoyed the book – don’t get me wrong – it just didn’t have the magic of
earlier entries in the series. It’s still a must read for fans of Betsy and her
cohorts – especially since it wraps up one storyline and starts exploring
another. That being said, it might be time to put Betsy to rest. Her schtick is
starting to get old.
Deadlocked: Speaking of getting old, Charlaine Harris’
Sookie Stackhouse is at that point in literature when I don’t really care who
she ends up with or if she even lives or dies anymore. Through the years, I’ve
been a fan of sassy Sookie and her Wal-Mart outfits. I’ve kind of moved beyond
it now. It used to be that I couldn’t wait for a new installment in the series.
Now it feels like a chore to go through them. The good news is, though, Harris
has set an end date for Sookie – and it’s next year. There’s only one more book.
With that in mind, fans really should read ‘Deadlocked.’ Even though I’m tired
of her, I’ll probably miss Sookie when it’s all said and done.
Explosive Eighteen: Janet Evanovich needs to let Stephanie
Plum go. The character hasn’t had any growth since the 12th book and
the antics of all the characters aren’t fresh and fun anymore. They’re just old.
Sparks Fly: A Novel of the Light Dragons: Katie Macalister
has several popular series out right now – but the dragon series is by far my
favorite. While I think the first four green dragon books are still my
favorite, the three light dragon books are still infinitely entertaining (and
much better than the middle three silver dragon books). The novels set up a
rich back story and history – and they’re not the typical paranormal romances
that litter book stores now. There’s something special about Macalister’s world
– I’m just glad to get to be a part of it.
Real Vampires Hate Skinny Jeans: Gerry Bartlett’s vampire
saga is starting to show it’s age – a little. I still find most of the
characters entertaining – I’m just sick of the constant back-and-forth between
Glory and some of the characters. This book has a big reveal which kind of
feels wedged in and forced to create more controversy between Glory and her
love Blade. That being said, the excerpt from the next book seems to indicate
Bartlett is going to do something new with the series – and that’s a welcome
occurrence. Even though this book is my least favorite of the series, there are
still laugh-out-loud moments – and that’s all you can really ask for in a
Krewe of Hunters: Heather Graham has a new trilogy in the
Krewe of Hunters series, including ‘The Unseen’ (May 27), ‘The Unholy’ (June
26) and ‘The Unspoken’ (July 31). Graham is hit or miss, but when I look back
at the bulk of her work there are a lot more hits than misses. She’s pretty
reliable – and her sex scenes are always hot.
And, for those willing to try something new, you can always
try reading the two books I've written. They're both light summer reads featuring newspaper reporter Avery Shaw and
the colorful people that surround her. The books are set in Macomb County – so that’s
always a bonus. What? A little self-promotion never hurt anyone. ‘Who, what,where, when, die’
and ‘If it Bleeds, it Leads’
are both available on Kindle.
What do you think? What are looking forward to reading this