Mini reviews – Read in July

Ah yes, those books I read last month. It’s about time I write about them before even more time passes and I forget even more…

The Poisonwood Bible – Barbara Kingsolver
The BBC World Book Club podcast made me read this book, despite having heard a huge spoiler. Loved how the chapters were told from the different daughters’ perspectives. An absolute gem of a book.

Soulless (Parasol Protectorate #1) – Gail Carriger
A fun enough vampire/werewolf/soulless read set in an alternate Victorian England. But enough about Alexia’s nose, olive skin and half-Italian background already…!!

Seven Years – Peter Stamm
A cold, difficult read about a man’s relationship between two women. And such a hard book to write about. Yet as I think back about this book, I want to read more by Stamm, for his stories about such real, flawed characters and their uncomfortable, ordinary lives.

Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
Not sure how I managed to finish this one.

The Gun Slinger (Dark Tower #1) – Stephen King
I’m not really a Stephen King fan, although I really enjoyed reading (and rereading) Different Seasons.  This interview with N.K. Jemisin made me read The Gun Slinger (thanks to Buried in Print for that link). And it was interesting, very dark, kinda creepy, and I wasn’t quite sure if it was really for me, but I hear that things get better in the second book. So we’ll see, that is, when I actually get to reading it.

Boneshaker – Cherie Priest

A fun read but I was left wanting… well all kinds of things. The writer tries to hold back information but leaves the reader wanting too much. Still it was an enjoyable romp in an alternate steampunk-lite Seattle. Preferred the side characters to the main ones though.

Walks with men – Ann Beattie

Ugh. The problem with reading a novella? Not knowing when to give up.

China Mountain Zhang – Maureen McHugh
This was one of my favourite reads last month. A world in which China has become the dominant power, America more of a collapsed economy. I loved how the main character was such an unexpected person, mixed-race, gay. And especially how the lives of the different characters intersect, but just barely, enabling the author to show very differing perspectives of this world. A brilliant brilliant book.



  1. Yeah, Carriger spends too much time on Alexis’ looks and her odd temperament which I never found odd. She focuses less on that in the rest of the series though.
    One thing I like with the Clockwork Century (Priest’s series) is that each book has a different main character. So you always get more of those side characters. I really liked Dreadnought.
    I should try the Poisonwood Bible again. I couldn’t get into it last time.


  2. Nice mix of books! I’ve had the Gunslinger on my stacks for an embarrassingly long time. I’ll give it a go one day, but my interest in King waned after college. I might join the IT readalong (IT-along) that’s going on now if I get to feelin’ crazy.


  3. Yay, mini-reviews are fun too, and a lifesaver when there’s just no inspiration or time to write up a lengthy review o__O

    Poisonwood Bible: phew, glad you liked it, it’s on my tbr
    Soulless: ha! I think I quizzed you about this one on GR 😉
    Seven Years: I read the arc of this book and liked it a lot, but yes, it’s difficult to review. I read his forthcoming bundle of short stories We Are Flying and I’m not really enthusiastic about it.
    Heart of Darkness: oops, it’s on my tbr as well…
    The Gun Slinger: so… you haven’t read it yet? Let me know when you do, so I can read along? 😉
    China Mountain Zhang: adding to my tbr now. I advise you to stay away from The Fat Years, which has a similar concept.


    1. Gun Slinger – I’ve read the first book, contemplating reading the second book, but as usual there are so many other books that have caught my eye!


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