Holiday Reading List

When I joked on Twitter that I was making a holiday reading list and already had a year’s worth of books on it, a few people said “why don’t you post it!” Since I love spying on/being inspired by what others are reading (here’s Ros’s holiday list, for instance), I figured, “Why not?” It’s more like “I want to read this, and this, and oh yeah, that” rather than a real plan. I guess that way it can take me well into the new year!

Reading Right Now:

Griever: An American Monkey King in China, by Gerald Vizenor (thanks to a conversation with Robin about American Indian writers). Despite my PhD training at an institution steeped in post-modernist theory, I like my fiction realist and traditional, so I feel more than a bit like all the Goodreaders who say “I don’t know what to make of this.”

Scenes of Passion/Scenes of Peril, by Suzanne Brockmann and Jill Sorenson. I bought this mainly for Jill’s novella, because a) I have a soft spot for the snowbound trope, b) I enjoy her books, and c) we’re Twitter “friends.” But I’m reading (rather briskly) Brockmann’s first. So far it’s got too little of the parts I like–hero and heroine doing community theatre together(!!) and trying to improve the business he inherited (there’s one of those complicated category romance will provisions involved)–and too much of the parts I don’t–almost-thirty heroine who has been utterly passive in her adult life and calls herself a loser; really, really obvious secret hero is keeping; heroine feeling bad about having the hots for her best friend’s high school boyfriend even though it’s 10 years later and BFF is happily married to someone else.

What I’m Listening to Now:

Dirty Warsby Jeremy Scahill (narrated by Tom Weiner). So seasonal and uplifting! (There’s quite a bit of non-fiction on my want-to-read list that’s even more depressing and I just can’t face right now).

With This Ringby Amanda Quick (narrated by Barbara Rosenblatt). Silly, fun comfort reading, kind of a tribute to the “horrid novels” its heroine writes.

I Swear I’m Reading Over the Holiday:

The River of No Return, by Bee Ridgway. Because a big fat genre mash-up sounds like perfect holiday reading. Also, I bought this in hardback and I’m damn well going to get to it before the paperback comes out in April.

What Else I Might Read:

(If you want to vote for a title in the comments, go for it. But I’m reading as the mood strikes me, because it’s vacation, baby).

Mimiby Lucy Ellman. Remembered it because of this great year-end list and downloaded from the library. Oh hey, it starts on Christmas Eve!

Bone Rider, by J. Fally. If Sunita loves a book, especially against her expectations, I’m pretty much sold. (And since I discovered I had a ton of unused e-book bucks at AllRomance, I got this free!).

I’m actually in a romance mood again, and maybe even a Christmas romance mood. I’ve got a selection from Marion Lennox, Alison Roberts, and Sarah Morgan. I’ll read at least one.

Thanks to a recommendation from Laura Vivanco and this post at Romance Novels for Feminists, I picked up two books by Karyn Langhorne.

I’d like to catch up with some of my favorite historical romance authors, like Miranda Neville and Courtney Milan. I’m tempted to go back and re-read Milan’s Brothers Sinister series from the beginning, but glomming doesn’t work for me and I’d never get to a new one that way.

I could go on, but, you know, my vacation is only two weeks, and not all of that is really vacation–I’ve got planning for next semester to do too. I’m enjoying having extra time for reading, though, and since next semester’s teaching is all Academic Writing, which means less reading for work, I’m hoping the trend will continue.

It’s dark at 4:30pm, there’s a fire in the fireplace, and I’m under a furry blanket beside the Christmas tree. Time to open a book! What are you reading?

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12 Responses to Holiday Reading List

  1. Miss Bates says:

    Housebound in a semi-ice-storm I’ve been reading Kristen Ashley (my first!), LAW MAN. While I can see where readers might have “unaffected scorn” for it, I’m loving every minute of it. Whatever you’re reading, hope you’re enjoying it.

  2. sonomalass says:

    I’m still in Wimsey land, reading Busman’s Homeymoon. I have the new Milan and some other things waiting for when grades are finally done, but with all the Christmas and family stuff this week, I expect I will be on the beach in Hawaii by the time I get to it.

    • Liz Mc2 says:

      Wimsey land makes a great grading break. Um, not to mention Hawaii! The sun has come out here, so I’ll try not to be too envious. Enjoy your holidays, both the busy family part and escape to Hawaii part.

  3. Sunita says:

    I dragged a hardback print copy of I PROMESSI SPOSI to Alaska, so I’m definitely reading that! I also want to read the next in the Michael Nava series (#4), and I’ve got a couple of review books and a manuscript draft for comments that I’m looking forward to as well. I finished an older Nicola Cornick HQN historical, WHISPER OF SCANDAL, on the way up here and I liked it a lot, so I picked up the first in her current series.

  4. jmc says:

    What do you think of Dirty Wars? I’m still creeping through the book, so I can’t really opine, although I did really admire Scahill’s Blackwater book and like his writing in general. I saw the accompanying documentary when it played at my local independent, and it was good as a sort of condensation of what I’ve read so far, if you’re interested.

    • Liz Mc2 says:

      I find it harder to get a “big picture” of non-fiction when I’m listening rather than reading (e.g. no table of contents/structural overview or sense of how it is documenting its sources) but it seems very thoroughly reported and I’m finding it easy to follow.

      I’m guessing the alternation between broad context and profiles of particular individuals reflects the book’s origins in magazine pieces, but for me that’s keeping it engaging rather than seeming like it’s patched together.

      I like that, although it certainly has an argument or perspective on what’s being reported, it doesn’t have a polemical or histrionic tone. But man, it’s disheartening, even the parts that aren’t new to me.

  5. Isobel Carr says:

    I’m reading non-fiction (as usual these days). I’m deep into “The Complexion of Race: Categories of Difference in Eighteenth-Century British Culture” by Roxann Wheeler right this moment with “The Beau Monde: Fashionable Society in Georgian London” by Hannah Greig waiting in the wings. And I have Alexis Hall’s “Iron & Velvet” queued up for tomorrow though. And maybe soon I’ll find the time to tackle “The Age of Ice” by J.M. Sidoro. The sample was excellent, so I bought it. Book is GRRM huge though.

  6. Isobel Carr says:

    And apparently my cold has made it impossible for me to write in coherent English. Sheeh.

  7. Ros says:

    Having made a list, I am now overwhelmed with the excitement of staying at a house full of someone else’s books, so I am mostly reading those. And the Courtney Milan because I couldn’t wait another second for that.

    Happy Christmas, happy birthday and happy reading!

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