My coming soon list is bursting with stuff that's coming out in April; if you let the titles that will be out on May 1 sneak into the list, you'll leave me gasping like a corseted debutante who's been waltzing with Brad Pitt. Which is to say--entirely breathless, in a slightly dizzy and VERY tingly way.
Let's start with The Shape of Desire. This gets all its mileage out of being a Sharon Shinn book. I think it's about werewolves--okay, whatevs. I ain't against 'em. Shinn isn't perfect, but there are two sides to that. Most of her books are really wonderful. Beautifully constructed, meditatively paced, and solidly structured around character, these are just pleasing, charming things. But even when she misses the mark on some of these things, I've found that all of her books have a charm, a warm-fuzzy happy ending quality that leaves me with a good taste in my mouth, even if the book was slight. The worst I've ever had to say about her books was that they didn't have a lot of substance; this is not a devastating criticism.
Verdict: Very promising.
Glamour in Glass will be out from Mary Robinette Kowal. Not everyone loved Shades of Milk and Honey as much as I did, but I adored it. I think the comparisons with Jane Austen might have worked against it a little bit; it's a Regency, like so many Austen imitators, and it does a damned fine job of it--only but plus with magic. By invoking Austen, though, you might expect the richness and depth of her work, but really it's much more like Georgette Heyer or Joan Aiken. With magic.
Shades of Milk and Honey is on sale for the Kindle for only $3. If you haven't read it, and this sounds even remotely entertaining to you, try it. You won't be disappointed. But really, the reason I love her is because of her Hugo nominated short story, "For Want of a Nail," which you can read for free here. I will read whatever she publishes.
Verdict: Gleeful anticipation, as of knowing there is a box of Valentine's chocolates waiting for me on April 10.
Magic Under Stone is Jaclyn Dolamore's sequel to Magic Under Glass. I'd call it long-awaited, but while that's literally true, it implies a passion that's maybe not earned. I read the first one mostly because there was a whole dust-up about the cover. It was good--magic, charming, and I liked the main character very much. A little mushy around the edges, in the way that YA sometimes is now that I'm an adult, but I'll read the next one. And hey, here it comes!
Verdict: "Oh, hey, I don't think I've ever seen this episode from the first season of How I Met Your Mother. Cool, I guess I'll watch it." Like that.
True Sisters, by Sandra Dallas. Hard to discuss; I have this weird relationship with Sandra Dallas that sort of defies description. But this one is about Mormons, so I'm all in.
Verdict: Historical fiction by a writer I generally enjoy a great deal, about Mormons. It's like I was at a buffet and every dish looked so delicious my plate is overflowing. I can't wait to see what it tastes like!
Okay, here's where we get sneaky and let the May 1 books in the back door. But oh, they're the exciting ones!
I'll tell you all about N.K. Jemisin's Kingdom of Gods very soon, because I just finished it, and oh, Sieh! Oh, poor, funny, weary Sieh--I've rarely felt that much empathy for that complicated a character. I'm so thrilled that she apparently had several finished, unsold novels when her first series took off, because her next series is starting already! Let's all cross our fingers for The Killing Moon to be on par with the Inheritance trilogy.
Verdict: Eager, eager, eager, but so nervous! Like a first date, or going to a high school reunion. Such high hopes! Such potential for torment! An exquisite agony of anticipation!
Insurgent is Divergent number two, by Veronica Roth. I'm actually not squirming about this one; it was a decent YA dystopia novel with a few too many worldbuilding holes. But I'll read the next one.
Verdict: What I really want to know is whether the third book will be called Emergent. That is my prediction; please be prepared to acknowledge my supreme naming skills when I am proven right.
And finally, last but the opposite of least: Bitterblue. Kristin Cashore's sequel to Graceling and Fire, and I'm really anticipating this one. Neither of those books was perfect, but they were complicated, plotty, and character-rich, and lord, but I can't wait to see what this one has in store. I am atwitter and aflutter and a-hopeful. Can't wait.
Verdict: I will pay money for this book the day it comes out.
This is rarely the case; most of the books above I'll jump on the library list for and read them when it's my turn. April release dates merely begin my delightful period of waiting list anticipation. But for some--Bitterblue, Glamour in Glass, The Killing Moon--I will spend money and download the day they're released, and buying them will make me happy long before I get around to reading them.
And now, to sleep--perchance to dream.