I suppose we all go through phases with our reading. As a wee small thing I was everything fantasy, which rather rapidly became everything fantasy and scary, then everything fantasy, sci-fi, and/or scary, and then … Well, actually, that one stuck for quite a while. I may still be in that phase, if I’m honest. I’ve merely refined the parameters a bit.
I do go through stages of reading thrillers, or detective stories, or literature-type things, and I’ll grab a science-y non-fiction at times, or even – gasp – the odd memoir if it sounds funny/interesting/weird enough.
But I always come back to my personal happy place – genre fiction. Mostly, these days, my love is fantasy in a world that resembles ours, or ideally is ours. I was put off horror after too many ‘scary’ books that were just splatter, and I’ve put down too many sci-fi books that were about manly men from manly spacecraft being manly while doing manly things, or were so mired in technical detail that I wandered off to get tea and never came back.
I’m only just realising that, for someone who claims to read widely, I’m really fussy.
Which is why I was so, so happy when my lovely friend Sam introduced me to the Star Kingdom series, by Lindsay Buroker. It’s eight glorious books of unlikely heroes, strong friendships, snarky dialogue, and unexpectedly personable robots. There’s plenty of action for my action-loving heart. There are entertaining, believable characters with ‘flaws’ that are their strengths. There’s suspense and humour and commentary on humanity and our suitability (or lack thereof) of having the opportunity and responsibility of exploring other worlds. There are villains who are distinctly heroic, and heroes who need to learn to be a teeny bit villainous. And more strong (without being one-dimensional or invulnerable) female characters than a cat-woman can throw across a room. Which is a lot.
Sam, you’ve broken my TBR, and I have zero regrets.
I also want more of this sort of sci-fi, so if you have suggestions, send them this way, lovely people! I have given up all hope of ever actually seeing the bottom of my TBR, even at a distance, anyway, so I’m just going with it at this point.
Oh, and rating? All the fizzop a beleaguered roboticist can drink, and a full hamper of baked goods made by his mother.
Check out the vid for my full chat!
And I did mention the first book I’ve picked up since finishing Star Kingdom, which is A Zoologist’s Guide to the Galaxy by Dr Arik Kershenbaum. So far it’s a really interesting read, but I shall update on that next month, when I’ve actually read enough of it to not still be thinking about snarky droids.
Now over to you, lovely people – what genres do you keep coming back to? What ones have you loved but moved away from? Let me know below!