Sunday, October 19, 2014

Murchie Plus Books: October 12th to 18th

The premise: I love my dog. I love books. I combine the two by photographing my dog with everything I read, barring the comics I get through Marvel Unlimited. Last week, that was lots of stuff about the Inhumans. I love the Inhumans.

The photos: go live on Instagram as I take them and appear here in digest form every Sunday.

A fuzzy grey poodle, Murchie, appears in profile before a white e-reader with the cover art for Storms of Lazarus displayed on its screen. The cover depicts a pale-skinned man with short, dark hair and a raven perched on his shoulder. He wears a long, dark coat. An airship is visible in the air behind him. The e-reader is laid flat, so the image appears at an angle.

I finished LORD OF CHAOS at lunchtime on Friday and read nothing but comics until Tuesday, which is when I purchased and began STORMS OF LAZARUS by Karen Kincy.

The very moment the book showed up in my Kindle app, I loaded its cover and propped the device behind my sleepy wee Murchie. No sooner had I snapped the first picture than Murchie shifted in his sleep, sending my Kobo tumbling down to bonk him on the head.

I felt terrible, but Murchie just shrugged it off. This is the dog who takes grave offense when his soft, tiny chew toy accidentally brushes his nose during games of fetch, so I guess he was still too groggy to recognize he should be put out. It surely helped that he wasn't injured (whew!).

Still, I figured it would be safest to lay the e-reader on its side for all subsequent shots.

Murchie lays atop a red blanket. He wears a black tank top. In front of him at an angle sits In the House of Slaves, a slender volume with a stylized illustration of a devil just barely visible on its cover.

I've also continued my dip into Evelyn Lau's poetry with IN THE HOUSE OF SLAVES, a BDSM-focused collection. I'm really enjoying it, while Murchie appreciates the smell of a good library book.

As I mentioned before, this marks the end of my library's ability to supply me with Evelyn Lau's poetry. I want to keep reading the stuff on a regular basis and welcome any recommendations for poetry by women of colour.

Murchie sits tucked beneath a comforter and a red blanket so only his face and his front paws are visible. He faces the viewer head on and looks distinctly sleepy and annoyed, though his ears are perked. Beside him sits a trade paperback copy of Stealing Fire. Its cover shows a pale-skinned man seated on a pile of stones. He wears ancient armour--a leather kilt and tunic--and rests his wrist atop a sword. His eyes are closed.

Murchie proved less of a fan of STEALING FIRE by Jo Graham, though that could be because I cornered him first thing in the morning again. (It's the best time to ensure he'll stay still long enough for me to take several shots to choose from.)

I, on the other hand, loved the hell out of the book, and I'm not entirely sure why. I suppose it was a combination of that indefinable connection to a character and the sense that this is part of Something More. As I understand it, all Graham's Numinous World books stand alone, but they follow the same soul through multiple lifetimes and so interconnect in many ways. This story captivated me on its own merits, but it also left me wicked eager to see how the choices Lydias makes here influence the rest of his lives.

Luckily, I can easily get my hands on all the other books except THE HAND OF ISIS (it looks like someone lost my library's only copy--boo!) and the short story collection. Hurray! I'll try to pace myself in deference to la TBR, but I'm so eager to see what happens next (and what's happened before) that I may have to at least start another before the end of the month.

I should note, too, that STEALING FIRE didn't grab me right away. In fact, I'd all but decided to abandon it by page 60 or so. "But people I trust love Jo Graham's books," I said to Murchie. "I'll give it one more chapter."

By the end of that chapter, I couldn't even imagine putting it aside. Hurray!

Murchie stands on a red leather chair. Behind him, propped against a black and gold brocade cushion, is my e-reader with cover art for The Last Good Knight on its screen. It shows a pale-skinned woman with her back to the viewer. She wears a blue cloth draped to cover her buttocks but leave her back and legs exposed.

Then the Readathon began!

I finished STEALING FIRE first thing in the morning, then jumped into THE LAST GOOD KNIGHT, a five-part serial by Tiffany Reisz. We'll let the cover for the first installment stand in for the whole novella since the only difference between them is the accent colour.

I saved the serial specifically for the Readathon, and it was well worth the wait. I grinned, I gasped, and I cried, while Murchie decided he wasn't terribly keen to hover near me while I read it. He can be so finicky.

Murchie lounges on his sheep-shaped pillow with my e-reader behind him. Its screen displays the cover of A Case of Possession, featuring two pale-skinned men in Victorian dress in a nimbus of green light.

After that, I dove into my most anticipated read of the 'thon: A CASE OF POSSESSION by KJ Charles. Y'all may recall I fell in love with (and raved about) THE MAGPIE LORD a couple of weeks ago, but I did my best to resist its sequel until la TBR was just a little bit smaller.

Then I got Scribd, and Scribd had it, and I could resist no longer.

I'm pleased to report I loved A CASE OF POSSESSION just as much as THE MAGPIE LORD. It's funny and scary and hot and emotionally charged, with great characters and lots of intriguing magic. I'm wicked eager to get my hands on the next one, which should drop on October 28th. Which is really soon! I'm not sure why, but I expected it to be out in early 2015 or something.

I also read "Interlude With Tattoos," a free short story that falls between the first and second books, but I didn't bother photographing it because it was a single story and I don't count those on my yearly reading list.

And that, I fear, was the last photographable thing I tackled during the Readathon. I spent the rest of the event alternating between stories from SUBVERSION, an anthology I showed y'all when I began it several weeks ago, and issues of DEADPOOL on Marvel Unlimited. I'm pleased to report that SUBVERSION was wonderful, while the second DEADPOOL arc I tackled (EVIL DEADPOOL) delighted the hell out of me.

Next week: a new audiobook! (For sure this time.) A library book! Maybe a magazine! Possibly another volume of the Wheel of Time! (They get shorter again from this point, which is the world's biggest relief.)

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