Top 5


Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week.

Whether you’re a fan of short or long series (or both!), most readers prefer to dive into a series. However, where does one even start with how many book series there are?! To “help a friend out,” what are some first in book series you would recommend to friends?

I read a lot of series so it would have been easier to give the first book in a series in every genre I read. 🙂 But here are some of my favorite long series:

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The first in a humorous historical mystery series. Set in Victorian times, Amelia Peabody is a smart and independent woman who loaths the restrictions of her culture. Fortunately, she has enough money that she can travel to Egypt. She loves the ancient Egypt, but as a woman she can’t train as an Egyptologist. Fortunately she and her friend Evelyn find a couple of handsome Egyptologists who really need help. Also Amelia and Evelyn must solve the mystery of the mummy.

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The Vorkosigan series is very long and it can be hard to know which book to start with. I prefer Cordelia’s Honor. It’s a omnibus of the first two books in the series, in the internal chronological order. The series is character focused science fiction.

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Another science fiction series that also has terrific characters. The main character, known only as Boss, is a loner who loves to ”dive” ancient spaceships. They’re so old that humanity has forgotten the technology and she loves to unravel their mysteries.

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Another long series, this time urban fantasy with fae. October “Toby” Daye is a half-human, half-faerie woman; her father was a human and her mother is a Daoine Sidhe. She lives with her fiance and young daughter in San Francisco. In the mortal world, she’s a private investigator and in the faerie world, she’s a Knight in her own right which is almost unheard of for a half-blood. Then her liege lord’s wife and daughter are kidnapped and Toby is given the task to find them. She follows a suspect but unfortunately, he knows about her and changes her into a fish. For fourteen years. When she finally gets back to her human form, the world around her has changed. While she starts as a loner, she gathers a family of good friends around her.

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Detective inspector Chen works in Singapore Three which is one of the franchise cities in China. The city is huge and bustling and has also quite a lot of supernatural activity: ghosts, demons, manifestations of goddesses, exorcisms. Chen is the police officer in charge of investigating the supernatural. Unfortunately, most of his fellow officers don’t believe in the supernatural and so Chen is shunned by them and even his superior officer doesn’t really trust him.

Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week.

In the past we’ve talked about kind characters, favorite father figures, and other prompts that have focused on favorite characters, but what about favorite villains? Let’s spotlight some of those villains who we absolutely love!

I’m far more interested in heroes, maybe because I tend to read a lot of series and they follow the heroes, not the enemies. My favorite enemies actually come from movies and TV shows. But books have some pretty impressive enemies, too.

1, Cardinal Richelieu by Alexandre Dumas

He’s the archetype of the scheming villain whom the heroes can’t touch publicly.

2, Dracula by Bram Stoker

Another archetypal villain who spawned a whole genre.

3, Blind Michael by Seanan McGuire

In the third Toby Daye book, Toby must fight a fairy tale villain who kidnaps children.

4, Smaug by J.R.R. Tolkien

I love dragons and bad guy dragons are awesome.

5, Loki in the Norse mythology

Loki is one of the trickster gods in mythology and he gets into all sorts of trouble.

Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss a different bookish topic each week. Today the topic is Three-Word Titles.

For this week’s prompt, let’s have a fun challenge! What are some books in your collection or have read that have three-word titles?

Surprisingly many books have three-word titles. Here are some of my favorites:

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Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss a different bookish topic each week.

I think ALL books take us on wonderful adventures, but what are some books where you enjoyed the adventure the character went on? These could be adventures that the character(s) physically went on or maybe it was more of an emotional adventure. Let’s talk about all those kinds of adventures!

I read a lot of adventure stories so it was very hard to pick just five. Here are five which I think are more focused on adventure rather than violence.

1, Marie Brennan: A Natural History of Dragons

Lady Isabella of Trent was obsessed with dragons from an early age. But studying the natural form of anything isn’t proper for a young lady. She must make her life an adventure to do what she wants.

2, Lois McMaster Bujold: Paladin of Souls

Ista dy Chalion is a middle-aged woman, a former queen, and now the mother of the queen. She’s a widow and has lived under a curse for decades so many people consider her mad. Now, the curse is gone and Ista goes on an adventure, trying to win back her own life.

3, Genevive Cogman: the Invisible Library

Irene Winders is a Librarian (and a spy) working for the Library that exists between alternate worlds. She retrieves rare books for the Library.

4, Elizabeth Peters: Crocodile at the Sandbank

Amelia Peabody is an intelligent, strong-willed young woman. The limitations that the Victorian culture places on women, and specifically on her, frustrated her. When her father dies and she inherits his money, she leaves England and goes to the land that fascinates her, Egypt, and to the adventure of her life.

5, Connie Wills: To Say Nothing of the Dog or How We Found the Bishop’s Birdstump Again

Ned Henry is an Oxford historian who has done too many time jumps between the 1940s and the current day. So that he can recover, his superior sends him to the Victorian era… and an unexpected adventure.

Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week.

Tomorrow is Random Acts of Kindness Day and thought it would be fun to talk about kind book characters! Whether they do big or small acts of kindness, those acts can affect not just one character, but the whole cast! What are some books you’ve read that have a really kind character?

A very interesting topic. I love kind characters.

1, Superman

He’s always ready to believe in the best in people.

2, Robin Hood

He and his Merry Men often help people in addition to stealing from the rich and giving to the poor.

3, Penric by Lois McMaster Bujold

Penric is a scholar and curious about the world. Unlike most fantasy protagonists, he’s not violent at all.

4, Halla by T. Kingfisher

Halla is the female main character in the “Swordheart”. She often tries to help people and worries about her sisters’ children.

5, Julius by Rachel Aaron

In “Nice Dragons Finish Last” Julius is the smallest dragon in his family. He’s also kind and considerate while the other dragons are ruthless and scheming.

Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week. Today the topic is red covers.

Let’s spotlight some red covers this month! These could be red books you own, red books you’ve seen, or a mix of both!

These are some of the books I’ve read in recent years with red covers:

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Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week. Today, the topic is Five Star Reads

Let’s kickoff the “month of love” with some gushing! What are some books you’ve read and gave five stars? Could be recent reads or a book(s) you read a long time ago and want to remind everyone how amazing it is!

Lovely topic! I had a hard time narrowing this to just five but here goes:

1, Connie Willis: To Say Nothing of the Dog

This is one of my comfort reads. It’s a funny time travel story, mostly set in the Victorian times.

2, Kristine Kathryn Rusch: Buried Deep

The fourth book in the Retrival Artist series. I love the whole series that has a couple of very interesting alien species. They coexist with humans but sometimes the aliens’ laws aren’t sensible to humans. This book is set in Mars that belongs to a fascinating aliens called the Disty.

3, Robert Jackson Bennett: City of Blades

The second book in the Divine Cities trilogy. I also rated the third book five stars. This is set in a world where gods used to be active, but now they are dead and they’ve left behind quite a lot of surprises. The main character is a spy looking for her predicesor who has disappeared.

4, T. Kingfisher: Swordheart

A wonderful humorous fantasy romance between a 36-year old housekeeper and a soldier who is tied to a magic sword.

5, Lois McMaster Bujold: Barrayar

The second book in her SF Vorkosigan series. One of my favorites in her long-running series.

Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan is a former exploration ship captain from Beta Colony, but is now married to Admiral Lord Aral Vorkosigan who has been appointed the Regent of planet Barrayar. Cordelia comes from a very different culture and she’s still trying to navigate the strange Barrayaran culture. She’s especially lost among the high military caste Vor who have some pretty strange attitudes and customs, from Cordelia’s point of view. When some of the high Vor stage a coup, she’s trapped in the middle of it.

I just have to also list five of my favorite comic books.

1, Wendy and Richard Pini: Elfquest

A long-running fantasy series about elves. Wolfriders are a small tribe. When humans burn down the forest, the elves are forced to the wide world where they meet other elf tribes.

2, Neil Gaiman and various artists: Sandman

Dream is one of the seven Endless, powerful humanoids which represent various myths and also sides of the human psyche. Gaiman weaves a lot of myths, legends, and characters from them into the series.

3, Chris Claremont and John Byrne: X-Men: Days of the Future Past

X-Men is the first superhero comic I really liked and this is one of the best. The Days of the Future Past is just two issues long, but it was a powerful vision of a bleak future for both humans and mutants.

4, Kurt Busiek and Carlos Pacheco: Avengers Forever

As a long-time Avengers comics reader, this was a treat! Busiek made a valiant effort to tie together the various threads of Avengers history from different writers and decades. Immortus kidnaps a group of Avengers from different times and asks them to fight against Kang the Conqueror.

5, John Byrne: Fantasic Four Visionaries

Byrne’s FF is still one of my favorite FF adventures. They traveled in space and time and alternate realities.

Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week. Today, the topic is Made You Laugh.

We all have those “auto buy” authors that even without knowing what the book is about, we’re already pre-ordering it! For this week’s prompt, share with us some of your favorite authors!

I don’t have auto buy authors any longer (my TBR is already huge), but I have quite a few favorite ones.

1, Lois McMaster Bujold

I love her fantasy and scifi books. I like her new Penric and Desdemona series of fantasy novellas, but I’m a bit behind with them.

2, Seanan McGuire

I love her Toby Daye urban fantasy series with fae and her comics. But she also writes horror and I don’t want to read that.

3, Naomi Novik

I loved her Temeraire series a lot! It’s dragons set in the Napoleonic Wars period.

4, Steven Brust

I love his fantasy Vlad Taltos series and the spin-off Khaavren Romances which is a homage to Alexandre Dumas’ the Three Musketeers, in writing style as well as in other ways.

5, Kristine Kathryn Rusch

She writes in a lot of genres. I love her science fiction series (the Diving universe and Retrieval Artist), mysteries, and short stories. She also writes fantasy and romance.

Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week. Today, the topic is Made You Laugh.

We talked about memorable books at the end of last year, but what about books that have made you laugh? What are some of your favorite stories that have either made you chuckle or belly laugh?

1, Terry Pratchett: Witches Abroad

I love Pratchett’s books even though I didn’t read any last year. Any of them are good for a laugh or two, but I particularly love the Witches books.

2, Steven Brust: Jhereg

Vlad Taltos is a witch with an intelligent familiar, Loiosh. Their snarky conversations make everything better. Jhereg isn’t my favorite book in the series, but it’s the first.

3, T. Kingfisher: Swordheart

This is a fantasy romance book with lots of humor.

4, Jasper Fforde: The Eyre Affair

Thursday Next is a literature detective and she gets to go inside books!

5, Elizabeth Peters: The Last Camel Died at Noon

Peters’ series is historical mystery, but it has lots of humor, too. It’s set in Victorian times. Amelia Peabody and her husband are amateur Egyptologists.

Top 5 Wednesday is GoodReads group where people discuss different bookish topic each week. Yesterday, the topic was Monsters.

Vampires, goblins, crytpids, oh my! What are some of your favorite reads that include monsters? Share as many different (or same) monsters for this prompt!

I don’t read much horror but I do enjoy the odd undead, especially in a fantasy setting. And of course dragons, faeries, and other fantasy monsters.

1, Tanya Huff: The Blood Books

This is one of my favorite monster series. Victoria “Vicky” Nelson is a former police detective and now a private investigator. She and her two love interests encounter one classic monster in each book. In the first book “Blood Trail” it was a serial killer who drains his (or her) victims of blood. In the second book, “Blood Price”, Vicky agrees to help a family of werewolves.

2, Bram Stoker: Dracula

Dracula was published in 1897 so the book’s structure is somewhat different from the modern style, but it still works.

3, Richard Matheson: I am Legend

This is the closest to pure horror on my list. The book is quite different from the movie. It’s different from most other vampire books but works very well.

4, Anne Rice: Interview with a Vampire

I’ve read 10 books in this series so I really liked the first one, too. The main characters are vampires, of course.

5, Genevieve Cogman: The Invisible Library

This fantasy series has both fae and dragons, as significant secondary characters. Irene Winters is the main character who is both a librarian and a spy.

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