Wishes for My TBR Pile is a monthly post where I list and sometimes discuss the books I’ve discovered and would like to get and read. I refer to these lists whenever I visit a bookstore or library and can’t decide on what to get.
I’m so proud of myself, y’all! I managed to read one of the many books I’ve listed in these TBR posts. (Actually, I’ve managed to read a few listed in these posts, but I keep forgetting to mention them. Not anymore!) The book is The Black Tides of Heaven by J.Y. Yang. I included it in my January Wishes for My TBR Pile post and am glad I tried it. It was pretty good and was a quick read.
It’s a silkpunk fantasy novel about twins who’re trying to subvert the growing influence of their mother, who rules as Protector of their kingdom. One of the twins has prophetic powers that the Protector values and wants to use for her own means. However, the story follows Akeha, the twin who is often overlooked. I recommend the story to those who would like to try fantasy with some Asian influences and those who want to read fantasy that has gender diversity.
But back to the reason why I’m posting this. Here are books I’d like to add to my physical TBR:
The Nine by Tracy Townsend
A debut novel that blends sci-fi and fantasy to create an alternate universe where “science has become a religion and God is seen as the great Experimenter.” That’s not all the story is about, but that’s what I read in Mogsy’s review of it that made me want to read it. I love fantasy that incorporates some sort of religion in the world building, and I’m intrigued by this one where science is seen as a religion. I wonder if it’s used to make some sort of commentary on how the two — science and religion — are used in our society.
The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon
A fantasy novel set in a “medieval world comprised of kingdoms of humans, dwarves, and elves.” The story is about a headstrong girl called Paks who leaves home to join a mercenary company apparently to avoid an arranged marriage. I don’t know where I learned about this book, but it seems like a story I’ll enjoy. It makes me think of the Song of the Lioness series by Tamora Pierce, which is one of my favorite fantasy series.
The Dilemma of a Ghost and Anowa by Ama Ata Aidoo
Two plays that explore “the conflicts between the individualism of westernized culture and the social traditions of Africa.” I discovered both this and Changes (below) in a series of posts featuring Ghanaian writers that Darkowaa, the African Book Addict, published last year. I just read author Nnedi Okorafor’s thoughts on these plays over on Goodreads, which made me even more interested in reading them. Okorafor states that the plays also explore the friction in how Africans and African Americans relate to each other. That piqued my interest since it’s something I’ve observed and experienced and would like to see how Aidoo discusses/presents it.
Changes: A Love Story by Ama Ata Aidoo
A novel about a woman who divorces her husband and later falls in love with a wealthy married man. That’s just the bare bones of the story. I believe it’s about much more. It too was mentioned in Darkowaa’s post (link above) and is one I’d like to read to see what other themes it explores.
Don’t Worry, It Gets Worse: One Twentysomething’s (Mostly Failed) Attempts at Adulthood by Alida Nugent
For some reason, the synopsis of this book made me think it is a novel. But when I read Rachel’s review, I learned that it’s a memoir/book of essays about the author’s experience navigating her 20s. It’s one I’d like to read as I’m still floundering at adulting, which is made harder by the presence of student loans. (So stressful.)
Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? by Frans de Waal
I immediately added this to my Goodreads when I saw it mentioned in a Book Riot post. It’s a topic I often think about: not if animals are smart or are smarter than we are, but the similarities and differences in how the brains of animals (including humans) function.
Rose, Vol. 1: The Last Light by Meredith Finch, illus. by Ig Guara
A new fantasy comic book series about a girl trying to restore balance to her world. I don’t know where I learned about this, but it sounds interesting and is the sort of story I’d go for. The first volume was published in November last year. …I might get this soon. 🙂
Grimm Fairy Tales: Steampunk by Patrick Shand and Ryan Fassett, illus. by Annapaola Martello, Noah Salonga, and Robby Bevard
This strikes me as a steampunk retelling of the Brothers Grimm fairy tales. I’m so excited for it! Steampunk art tend to be very detailed, which is why I really want to get and read this. Right now I don’t care much for the story, but I do hope it’s good. I have no idea where I learned about this comic book. It’s possible I saw it in a comic bookstore and added it to my Goodreads then. I’m getting it the next time I see it.
A Pocket Full of Murder by R.J. Anderson
The first in a middle-grade fantasy series set in a spell-powered city. In this book, Isaveth, a poor 12-year-old girl, and Quiz, a street boy, work together to solve a murder and save Isaveth’s father. I added this to Goodreads after reading Millie’s review of it. The themes she listed caught my interest: religious persecution, struggle of the lower class, the use and abuse of welfare, and standing up for justice no matter the cost. It sounds like a lot for a middle-grade novel, but I’m eager to see how it all ties together. I might get this on my next library visit.
Good Morning, Midnight by Lily Brooks-Dalton
I’ve heard nothing but great things about this sci-fi novel. It seems to be a post-apocalyptic novel about characters who are isolated after a catastrophic event. Augustine works at a research center in the Arctic, which he refuses to evacuate with the other scientists because he doesn’t want to abandon his research. Left alone there, he discovers a mysterious child. Out in space, Mission Specialist Sullivan and her team are the first to penetrate deep space, but they begin to worry when Mission Control falls silent.
This is not a novel I’d usually go for, but it was mentioned by That Cozy Book Nook, who said that it “reads” like Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel and that got me curious and excited. A major reason why I love Station Eleven is because of its atmosphere and writing and the feeling of nostalgia it gave me for what we have today, which was weird and good at the same time. I hope I’ll have a similar experience with Good Morning, Midnight.
Elves. Vol. 1 by Jean-Luc Istin and Nicolas Jarry, illus. by Kyko Duarte and Gianluca Maconi
This looks so cool!! 😀 It’s the first volume in a high fantasy comic book series about how the tension between the Blue Elves and humans led to bloodshed. Apparently, each volume focuses on a different set of elves. I don’t know where I learned of this comic book, but I WANT IT SO BAD!!! The illustrations look great, which is why I’m so excited for it.
The Angel Maker by Stefan Brijs, trans. by Hester Velmans
I get the impression that this one is a mixture of horror and sci-fi. It’s about an odd geneticist who uses his sons to experiment with the boundaries of science and religion. Well, that’s what I got from the synopsis. I learned of this novel from a review of it on Books and Drinks, which pairs books with drinks (this one was paired with Red Bull). Of course, I want to read it because of the possible discourse it might provide on religion and beliefs and how they function in society.
The Dragonbone Chair by Tad Williams
I have a feeling that every major fan of high fantasy has read this book…except me. I want to read it too and I think I’ll really like it. It seems to be based in my favorite trope: a young farm boy/girl or other seemingly weak/unimportant character learns they’re special and has to save the world…maybe? I don’t know much about it, and don’t really want to; I just want to read it and see how it goes.
Shark Lady: The True Story of How Eugenie Clark Became the Ocean’s Most Fearless Scientist by Jess Keating, illus. by Marta Álvarez Miguéns
Eugenie Clark is a fascinating woman who earned the moniker “Shark Lady” for her many discoveries about sharks. Unfortunately, the first time I heard of her was on February 25, 2015 when she died from lung cancer. However, I’d still like to know more about Clark because she’s done some amazing things in her lifetime, such as catching a ride on a pregnant whale shark, which is the largest fish.
Well, I found a review of this illustrated children’s book about Clark’s life on Own Your Geek and now I really want it. I think it’ll be a fun way to learn more about Clark plus, the illustrations are so cute!
Batman, Vol. 3: Death of the Family by Scott Snyder, illus. by Greg Capullo and Jonathan Glapion
I’m so glad I discovered the Comic Vault. I love reading his comic book reviews and always discover something new there, such as this Batman comic book about the Joker returning to Gotham City after slicing off his face. (That dude is so hardcore.) I think I’ll need to read the volume that precedes this to fully understand the plot, but I want to get this one asap because the illustrations are calling to me.
Atlas Obscura: An Explorer’s Guide to the World’s Hidden Wonders by Joshua Foer, Ella Morton, and Dylan Thuras
I want this!!! It’s a nonfiction book that lists “600 of the strangest and most curious places in the world.” I’ve seen it in bookstores but have yet to buy it. (I don’t know why, probably because I have nowhere to put it.)