Stacking the Shelves #13

Now that I’ve done my Best Of list, it seems to make sense to do a final Stacking the Shelves for the year. I have to say, there seems to be something about the month of December where I get book crazy. It’s been a little less than a month since my last post, and yet I’ve managed to acquire some twenty books in that time frame! And that doesn’t count one that will arrive in January and that I think I still have 3-4 ARCs out for request on NetGalley and Edelweiss that I’m hoping to get my hands on. Yikes. Maybe I should be sliiiightly more choosy for a while? My TBR pile would thank me 🙂

For the last time in 2015, let’s do this.

ARC

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My first unsolicited ARC. I feel all grown up :* It’s pure sci-fi, which I’m looking forward to. I played in the YA end of the pool in 2015, so looking to dip my toes more in the adult end in 2016.

DRC

There’s definitely a broad assortment of books in this group. In the YA camp we have The Prophecy of Shadows (Greek mythology-inspired), Daughter of Blood (epic fantasy), Seven Black Diamonds (faery) Burning Glass (romance/fantasy), Beyond the Red (sci-fi) and Flawed (dystopian).  On the adult side we have Submissive Seductions (erotica) A Girl’s Guide to Landing a Greek God (Greek mythology based) and Masks and Shadows (historical).  It’s a fun mix. The books here are posted in order of publication date; though it’ll take me a while to get to Daughter of Blood. It’s the the third in a trilogy and I managed to pick up the first two for $1.99 each on Kindle and will be reviewing those first. The others are all stand-alones/first in series, so there is that :*

physical books traded for by me

I picked these up in a blog sale. These are all young adult except for The Forbidden Library which is more middle grade, but Django Wexler was an enticing thought. Becoming Jinn got a lot of love when it came out and others sounded like fun (angels! steampunk!). Given the size of my TBR pile though, these are definitely going to be lower on the totem pole for when I’m looking for something different to mix it up.

eBooks bought by me

Another hodgepodge of adult and young adult. The Strange Maid is the sequel to the just-reviewed The Lost Sun. Hidden is the next Alex Verus novel. The Heir of Night/The Gathering of the Lost are the first two in the Wall of Night books. These Broken Stars is a sci-fi/romance The Rook is a fantastical thriller and Tooth and Claw is a novel of manners…with dragons.

Twenty-one books. Twenty-one. I think I need to slow down just a wee bit. LOL. So. Have you gone as crazy as I have? What have you added to your shelves?

Nice Dragons Finish Last (Heartstriker #1) – Rachel Aaron

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Summary:

As the smallest dragon in the Heartstriker clan, Julius survives by a simple code: keep quiet, don’t cause trouble, and stay out of the way of bigger dragons. But this meek behavior doesn’t fly in a family of ambitious magical predators, and his mother, Bethesda the Heartstriker, has finally reached the end of her patience.

Now, sealed in human form and banished to the DFZ–a vertical metropolis built on the ruins of Old Detroit–Julius has one month to prove that he can be a ruthless dragon or kiss his true shape goodbye forever. But in a city of modern mages and vengeful spirits where dragons are considered monsters to be exterminated, he’s going to need some serious help to survive this test.

He only hopes humans are more trustworthy than dragons…

Review:

Nice Dragons Finish Last is a bit of an odd beast. On the one hand, the genre, the age of the protagonists, some of their actions and certain aspects of the plot 100% would suggest that this book is an adult title. On the other hand, there’s this earnestness, this You Be You / Embrace Who You Are message that runs throughout the book and in a way this sense of chasteness is all very Young Adult. It’s this odd dichotomy that results in a book that doesn’t really comfortable in its own skin, ironically, not unlike its own protagonist. For the record – it’s technically young adult, or so the author claims.

It’s a shame too, because Aaron’s big strength – the magic – is as clever as it’s ever been in her other books, and having dragons to play around with as protagonists is kind of fun, even if it doesn’t culminate in anything particularly unique – if we’re honest here, for the vast majority of the story, these could have been some kind of clan of weres or shifters without too much of a noticeable difference.

I’ll admit – this book grew on me as I read on and I ultimately did enjoy it. But do I want to keep reading? Do I want to recommend it? I don’t know, probably because I don’t know who I’d recommend it too. I don’t think most UF fantasy fans will like it – there’s too much much YA present. I’m not sure if a lot of YA fans will like it because it mostly feels like an adult novel. Maybe fans of both? There’s a REASON that UF is predominantly in the adult space, you know?

So yeah. If you like UF and you read YA, give this a look. Everyone else can probably skip it, though at its permanent $4.99 price point (or free on Kindle Unlimited), it’s a low risk investment if you like the sample chapters.

Verdict: Borrow it.

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