meganbmoore: (labyrinth: reading)
[personal profile] meganbmoore
What are you currently reading

The Secret History of the Mongol Queens: How the Daughters of Genghis Khan Rescued His Empire by Jack Weatherford. I'm only a couple chapters in, and so far weatherford has mostly been stressing that Genghis Khan thought women were really great. Which is good and all, but I'm ready to actually get to the women, though i have a feeling this might be a case of "biography of a dude but with a focus on the women in his life."

What did you recently finish reading?
Hidden by Kelley Armstrong. A novella set somewhere in the second half of the series, focusing on the werewolves. Entertaining enough, but nothing particularly memorable. I have found the two werewolf novellas I've read more enjoyable than the full-length werewolf books I've read, though. Probably because they're short enough that Armstrong doesn't have time to dwell on the more annoying parts of that mythology.

The Maid and the Queen: The Secret History of Joan of Arc by Nancy Goldstone. This biography sells itself as focusing on theconnections between Joan and Arc and Yolande of Aragon, the mother-in-law of Charles VII, but only a small portion of the book is actually about that. It's about 1/3 a biograhpy of Yolande, 1/4 a biography of Joan, with a focus on the possibility of her having been guided by Yolande's agents, and the rest is focused on the broader political scope of the time. It's still very enjoyable and interesting, but I still want to book about Yolande and her secret network of spies and informers and how she used Joan to further Charles's cause that I was promised.

Living With the Dead by Kelley Armstrong. Somewhat different from the other books in the series is that it has 4 POV characters, and the central protagonist is a human. This one is more of a suspense thriller in which many of the characters just happen to have supernatural abilities, but not the kind that keep them from largely having to do mundane things to get things done. Kinda like in earlier seasons of Charmed when Phoebe would reasonably complain about her sisters getting the superpowers that let them whomp evil while she got the one that let her know stuff, but that didn't actually help much when demons were in the same room, and the only main character in the book that does have a power that's helpful in combat is conveniently shipped off to do other things during a lot ofthe action. I enjoyed it a lot, thought I could have done without the main antagonist's characterization centering so much around her internalized misogyny.

A Memory of Wind by Rachel Swirsky. A novella about Antigone, that is essntially a character study of Antigone and her POV of the events leading to the Trojan War. I enjoyed Antigone's bitterness a lot, but did not enjoy how Antigone seems to blame Klytemnaestra as much as, if not more than, Agamemnon, or the portrayal of Helen as a shallow evil whore (there are a few bits later on that try to soften this portrayal and imply there's more to her than Antigone originally thought, but not enough for me) or how Klytemnaestra has always hated Helen for being "different" and prettier. And from this, you'd think Orestes was the only sibling she has. So, pretty much, I thought it was generally good, but fell into more stereotypical gender portrayals and negative relationships between women (Antigone/Klytemnaestra does start well, but deteriorates) that could have easily been subverted, or spun completely differently.


To Taste Temptation by Elizabeth Hoyt: Nothing wrong with the romance plotline in what I read, and I quite liked the heroine, but it was gearing up to some major raacefail re "savage indians in the [American] colonies", even for a romance novel, and from fanreviews, this is possibly the least faily of the lot, so I decided to skip on this series of Hoyt's and get back to the Prince and Maiden Lane series that I read a couple books from earlier in the year. Also, the hero takes early morning jogs, and while I know those aren't completely modern things, it felt really and weirdly out of place.

What do you think you'll read next?
I have Frostbitten the last full-length "Women of the Otherworld" novel that I haven't read yet, and the last "Artemis Fowl" book from the library, as well as my manga backlog.

Date: 2013-06-13 05:02 pm (UTC)
oyceter: teruterubouzu default icon (Default)
From: [personal profile] oyceter
Re: the Hoyt, I think To Seduce a Sinner and To Beguile a Beast are pretty readable and have very little of the "savage Indian" backstory, but books one and four of the quartet really focus on said backstory to their great detriment.

Heh, I got the Mongol queens book from the library but haven't read it yet, will be interested to know what you think!


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