May’s Mount “Want to Read”

I tend to get really excited about everything. I’m an easily excitable sort of person, if we’re being honest, and it’s pretty typical for me to latch onto something and become incredibly, overwhelmingly enthusiastic about it. Which is why talking about the books that I want to read next, the shiny, new, pretty books that have caught my eye in the last month, is one of my favorite things. Look at them all!? Aren’t they just beautiful? What’s not to love?

I’m really leaning hard into fantasy and sci-fi lately and it shows with this list. That’s nothing new for me, since it’s easily my most read genre (as evidenced by my Goodreads shelves) but it’s pretty apparent this month that those genres are my Brand.

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April’s Mount “Want to Read”

It’s finally spring. The sun is trying to shine. The birds are starting to chirp. It’s 40 degrees in Michigan and has been gloomy for a month. We’re finally coming out of our six month long winter hibernation here in the frozen north.

And what better way to celebrate than by adding to the endless pile of Want to Read books.

We’ve all got Mount TBR, but I try not to buy a book unless I know I’ll be able to read it in the next month (if you want to see the evidence of me failing that rule, check out my Mount TBR list). Instead, I have a trigger finger when it comes to the Want to Read shelf on Goodreads, where I will flag any and all books that manage to hold my attention through the entire preview. With Tor’s freelancers hard at work hyping upcoming books and an endless supply of book podcasts at my fingertips, Mount “Want to Read” has grown to an almost unmanageable size over the years.

So let’s take a look at some of the books I’ve added to the Want to Read pile in the last month:

No Time to Spare: Thinking About What Matters by Ursula K. Le Guin
Added to Mount Want to Read: Mar 19, 2018

Summary:
Ursula K. Le Guin has taken readers to imaginary worlds for decades. Now she’s in the last great frontier of life, old age, and exploring new literary territory: the blog, a forum where her voice—sharp, witty, as compassionate as it is critical—shines. No Time to Spare collects the best of Ursula’s blog, presenting perfectly crystallized dispatches on what matters to her now, her concerns with this world, and her wonder at it.

Why I clicked Want to Read:
I love Le Guin, though I haven’t read nearly enough of her work (yet). With her passing, though, she’s been brought to the forefront of our collective thoughts, and I’m interested in reading her musings on life, society, and literature. She was a sharp, amazing woman, and I hope to learn something from her.

The Door Into Fire (The Tale of the Five, #1) by Diane Duane
Added to Mount WtR: Mar 20, 2018

Summary:
Herewiss is the only man in centuries to possess the Power of the blue Flame, but he can’t use or control it — not even to help his dearest friend, Freelorn, exiled prince of Arlen. Herewiss does have a talent for more mundane sorcery, and (aided by the unearthly creature Sunspark) he uses it to rout the armies besieging Freelorn. But now Herewiss faces a devastating choice.

Why I clicked Want to Read:
A post on Tor brought it to my attention, but it was a combination of the promise of a queer SFF story and positive reviews from people who’s opinions I trust that sealed the deal. The cover is outstandingly absurd, but that’s 70s SFF for you, I guess.

And because Tor.com published their 15 Spring Books We Can’t Wait to Read list on April 2, and I’m the impressionable and easily excitable sort, these were all added on April 3:

All Systems Red (The Murderbot Diaries, #1) by Martha Wells

Summary:
On a distant planet, a team of scientists are conducting surface tests, shadowed by their Company-supplied ‘droid — a self-aware SecUnit that has hacked its own governor module, and refers to itself (though never out loud) as “Murderbot.” Scornful of humans, all it really wants is to be left alone long enough to figure out who it is.

But when a neighboring mission goes dark, it’s up to the scientists and their Murderbot to get to the truth.

Why I clicked Want to Read:
I’ve seen this one tossed around book blogs a few times and always written it off because the name “Murderbot” was just too much for me. It sounded so… so corny. But it seems I can’t get away from mentions of this book, and the reviews are all so positive, I just have to give it a shot. Plus, book two releases May 8, so what better time to try it out.

Witchmark by C. L. Polk
Releases June 19, 2018

Summary:
Magic marked Miles Singer for suffering the day he was born, doomed either to be enslaved to his family’s interest or to be committed to a witches’ asylum. He went to war to escape his destiny and came home a different man, but he couldn’t leave his past behind. The war between Aeland and Laneer leaves men changed, strangers to their friends and family, but even after faking his own death and reinventing himself as a doctor at a cash-strapped veterans’ hospital, Miles can’t hide what he truly is.

When a fatally poisoned patient exposes Miles’ healing gift and his witchmark, he must put his anonymity and freedom at risk to investigate his patient’s murder. To find the truth he’ll need to rely on the family he despises, and on the kindness of the most gorgeous man he’s ever seen.

Why I clicked Want to Read:
It’s just the most On Brand sounding book summary I’ve read in a long time, really. Magic? Witches? Dramatic pasts? Queer relationships? Okay yeah sign me UP.

Strange Stars: David Bowie, Pop Music, and the Decade Sci-Fi Exploded by Jason Heller
Releases June 5, 2018

Summary:
In the 1960s and 70s old mores and lingering repressions were falling away, replaced with a new kind of hedonistic freedom that included sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll. Although it didn’t factor into the stereotype, it also included science fiction.

Strange Stars tells the story of how incredibly well read artists–David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, and many more–brought Sci Fi’s cosmic flare to their lyrics, sounds, and styles, and changed pop music forever.

Why I clicked Want to Read:
Things I love: David Bowie. Sci-fi. Pink Floyd. I’ll probably wait for a proper preview to go up before I really seal the deal here, but I’m definitely intrigued enough to smash that mf Want to Read button.

So that’s it for me. A lot of sci-fi this time around with some queer representation I just can’t wait to dig in to. Since several of these don’t release until closer to summer, I’ll be looking toward some other books for my May TBR pile, so stay tuned for that in the next couple of weeks.

In the meantime, tell me what books you’ve recently discovered and just can’t wait to buy. I could always use more books in the pile!