New books for March! My goal this year is 3 books per month, maximum; I achieved that goal in February, but I gave in to temptation in March and went way overboard. Here are the most recent additions to my (overflowing) shelves:
- Rainbirds by Clarissa Goenawan. This is my Book of the Month Club selection for March. There were some great choices this month, but again I succeeded in limiting myself to one selection. (I swear the month started out on such a good note, I had no idea I was in for such book-buying weakness later on.) I even read it within the month! It’s a sort of mystery/grief sketch of one Japanese man uncovering the secrets surrounding his sister’s untimely death.
- Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi. I had a 20% off coupon on the day this one released (a YA fantasy with an entirely non-white cast, the first book in a new series), which seemed like a sign. It’s surprisingly easy to find “signs” that I should buy a book. I don’t think I’ve bought any YA books this year, and I’ve hardly read any– but this one looked like a must. This is my current read and I’m certain I’ll finish it within the month; look at me go, reading my new books promptly! Review will be up next week.
- Penguin Moderns. I saw Ariel Bissett talking about this new collection of modern classics on Instagram and I had to check them out. They’re such beautiful little samplers of classic/influential writers from the 1900s, perfectly collectible with a nice range of content. I immediately wanted to read about half of the collection, but I settled on 6 to start and told myself I could buy more if I read and loved these first. I’m counting these as one book here (they’re only about 60 pages apiece so all 6 of them together is about the length of one book). I did manage to read all 6 this month. Here are the reviews: Letter From Birmingham Jail, Create Dangerously, The Distance of the Moon, The Missing Girl, Piers of the Homeless Night, and The Problem That Has No Name.
- Commonwealth by Ann Patchett. I found this hardcover copy in the bargain books section at Barnes and Noble on the day I picked up my parents from the airport. Long story short, they didn’t want to just be picked up from the airport, they thought they should run a bunch of errands as long as they were already out of the house and had a “chauffeur”, so I spent eight hours driving this day and I’ll be honest, when I had a chance to step in to a bookstore I didn’t try very hard to resist even though I already had my three books for this month. I feel kind of bad about not sticking to my allotted number of books (and carefully selecting titles I know I’ll read soon), but I needed a pick-me-up this day so I bought this family saga lit fic novel for cheap.
- The Circle by Dave Eggers. After I surpassed my 3 book limit, I let myself go a little book-buying crazy. I’ve been wanting to read The Circle for a long time, but really I didn’t need to own it this month and I picked it up in the store because the color of the cover fit my mood for the day (it’s a bright coral red, if you were wondering). I have no idea when I’ll get around to this one, and all I remember about the synopsis is that it’s sci-fi, and it revolves around some internet company that has access to a lot of private information and is maybe trying to take over the internet or do something shady?
- The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. I did have a coupon when I bought this one, and I bought it in store because every time I looked at it online I wasn’t sure what the size of the big floppy paperback I wanted actually was and I was afraid I’d accidentally buy the mass market paperback or something. I’ve really been in the mood for fantasy lately and I’ve heard that this one is superb. I’m a little hesitant to start because I know there’s no prospective publication date for the last book yet, and also I’m still in the middle of A Song of Ice and Fire. But I’m really excited for this one.
- The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. I picked this one up kind of randomly, but as soon as I read the synopsis (I actually didn’t get any farther into it than the uncontrollable mind-reading aspect) I couldn’t walk out of the store without buying this one. As I said, I’ve been in a fantasy mood and I was exercising no restraint. This is a YA fantasy trilogy by an author I’ve been interested in but haven’t read yet.
- Pierce Brown’s Red Rising Sons of Ares by Pierce Brown, Rik Hoskin, and Eli Powell. Back in the beginning of the month when I thought I could limit myself to 3 books, I was planning to order this one at the very end of the month (with a coupon, because saving money) so that it wouldn’t arrive until April, when I was expecting to go over 3 books anyway for my birthday month. But I ended up ordering it as soon as it was released on the 16th. At least I did read it right away (I love Pierce Brown’s Red Rising series) instead of growing my TBR shelf even more. This is a graphic novel prequel to the Red Rising series.
- Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. I was on the fence about buying this one, and if I had been closer to my 3-book goal I would have waited. I’m pretty sure I’m going to love this series, but in all honesty I haven’t even started the first book yet (Illuminae) and this is the third. But there was a good deal on the Barnes and Noble exclusive edition and, as you can see, the entire second half of this month was a new-book free-for-all for me. Obsidio is the third book in a YA sci-fi trilogy with a uniquely graphic narration style that uses different sorts of documents and files etc. to tell its story.
- The Illustrated A Brief History of Time & The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen Hawking. Stephen Hawking died this month and it reminded me that I wanted to read his A Brief History of Time, a nonfiction science book. I found this cool illustrated edition that’ll be a great coffee table book (someday when I have a coffee table) and in the meantime I think the pictures will make it easier to read. Science was my least favorite subject in school, but I think mostly because I hated the hands-on part of it. I avoided chemistry like the plague. But I am interested in learning about the world and how things work, and reading beyond my usual comfort zone, so I have high hopes.
I’m pleased with myself for reading 3 (soon to be 4) of these 9 within the month; if I had stuck to my original 3-book goal, I would’ve made a dent in my TBR shelf this month. Instead I read 5 (soon to be 6) of my own unread books this month and added 5 unread books, which means my TBR shelf will be down only 1 book this month and not until I finish Children of Blood and Bone tonight or tomorrow. That’s the real goal of my 3-book hauls this year, to lower the number of owned, unread books on my shelves; so I guess I’m glad that at least I’m not ending the month in a worse position than I started. But better luck next time, as they say.
Have you read any of these books? What new books did you pick up this month?
The Literary Elephant