I know I'm in a rut when I run out of books I'm in the middle of. Usually I'm cycling through a solid 4 to 6 books at a time, but for a short window today I was down to one, and now I've started my next audiobook (Broken Homes, Ben Aaronovitch), so I'm back up to two. (Aside: I can't tell you how valuable a long series of good books with great readers is. Rivers of London and Flavia de Luce; I basically switch back and forth between the two, and I have at least another half dozen books before I need to choose something for myself outside my pantheon.)
I've been seriously cranky lately and not in the mood for a lot of books, which has resulted in a lot of set-asides. I haven't even finished The Obelisk Gate yet, which is an incredible book! I love it! It's just so sad and stressful; I read three pages and the emotional wrench puts my brain out of joint for two days. I am a fragile creature in need of lightweight pleasures that are somewhat guaranteed.
I read The Invisible Library, by Genevieve Cogman, at Cora's suggestion, and it should have been just perfect for my mood--cheerful fantasy adventure! It was in so many ways the perfect book for me right now! But I kept seeing the dark side of everything, even here, and I'm mad at Irene's superiors for not taking better care of her. And, I'll admit, kind of annoyed at how swoony Irene is over her hot young protege. I'm down with the Famous Detective crush, but I am not sold on Kai.
Oh, and one thing that's holding me together is that two of my absolute favorite fanfiction authors are co-writing a longer piece right now. I cannot even explain to you how much this means to me; it is exactly the combination of laughs and angst and familiarity that I need in my life right now. And we haven't even gotten to the smutty parts yet.
So what do I pick up next? I'm thinking I need guaranteed joy, so I'm thinking of going to a favorite author. This is why I'm glad there are so many Sharon Shinn books that I've been holding off on, or Lois McMaster Bujold. I have the first Penric book out from the library, and I still haven't read Royal Airs.
Or I might go deep genre, like a horror/thriller, or a sci fi mystery--I have Ararat and Six Wakes waiting for me. Something that is not intended to delight but to pound me over the head with anxiety. Because anything I'm going to read will do that, so it might as well be on purpose.
This, of course, in addition to Afterparty, by Daryl Gregory, which I'm still pushing through. It's brutally good. Although there is something about the fact that the Canadian authorities--though I *know* they are totally serious and a world-class police force--are called the Mounties that makes it impossible not to chuckle when they're involved in a boat chase.