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I read and reviewed 42 comics, 76 books, and one ten-part serial last year.

This was a good reading year. Over at GoodReads, I didn’t rate anything one star and only 12 books and comics got two stars. On the other hand, only two comics got full five stars: the Mr. and Mrs X collections. So, most were steady four and three stars.

Best of the bunch:
1, Genevive Cogman: The Mortal Word
It’s the fifth book in the delightful Invisible Library series. Librarian and spy Irene and her good friend detective Peregrine Vale are invited to an alternate Paris to solve a murder. The murder of a high-born dragon during a peace conference between the dragons of order and their mortal enemies, the chaotic fae.

2, Martha Wells: Rogue Protocol
The third novella in the SF series continues to be just as entertaining as the first one. This time the Murderbot goes back to the planet where its adventure began.

3, Becky Chambers: Record of a Spaceborn few
A slice-of-life stories about five different humans living in a galaxy full of sentient species.

4, Elizabeth Bear: Ancestral Night
The story of Haimey Dz and her small crew of salvagers (in space). They encounter an ancient spaceship and Haimey accidentally bonds with an alien technological parasite.

5, Mary Robinette Kowal: Calculating Stars and the Fated Sky
A duology of historical SF books set in 1952 when a meteorite falls to Earth and forces US to accelerate the space program.

6, S. A. Chakrborty: The City of Brass
Set half in Egypt in 18th century and half in a fantasy world with various djinn houses and politics, I liked the story of Nahri, a young orphan supporting herself with slight of hand and small amount of inborn magic. She accidentally summons a powerful daeva who insists on taking her to the daeva city. The other POV is a deva prince Alizayd who is a pious Muslim but has very hard time playing the politics.

7, Alison Morton: Successio and Aurelia
Books three and four in the Roma Nova alternate history thriller books. Successio is the last in the opening trilogy which followed Carina from an ordinary US girl to an experienced military woman. Aurelia opened the second trilogy which follows Carina’s grandmother Aurelia who is just as independent and strong character as her granddaughter will be.

8, Peter Cawdron: Maelstrom
This was a very pleasant surprise. It’s a trilogy of novellas about alternate worlds.

9, Mindy McGinnis, Dan Koboldt, and Sylvia Spruk Wrigley: the Triangle
This was the second modern serial story I’ve read. It’s ten chapters long and a continuous story.
A group of people are shipwrecked in an uncharted island in the middle of Bermuda Triangle. Soon, they start to suspect that they’re not alone.

10, Trish Heinrich: Fahrenheit’s Ghost
This is a historical superhero story set in 1960s US. Colleen Knight has fire powers. When her mother asks a favor from her, she can’t say no. The story also has the beginning of an interracial f/f romance.

I also reviewed 43 comic books. I read many others, most Donald Duck or Mickey Mouse comics.

The best ones were

1, Mr. and Mrs. X vol. 1: Love and Marriage and vol. 2. Gambit and Rogue forever
Gambit and Rogue are finally together and having adventures in space (in the first volume) and in Mojoverse (in the second). Just pure fun.

2, Gambit and Rogue: Ring of Fire
It’s the fun and sexy prequel to the two volumes above where Remy and Rogue work through all their missteps in the relationship while going undercover to a… couples counseling island where mutants are disappearing.

3, Star Trek: TNG: Mirror Broken and Through the Mirror
Mirror Broken is set in the Mirror universe where their Picard tries to keep the crumbling Terran Empire together. In the second part, the Mirror universe Picard and his hate-filled crew try to highjack Enterprise-D.

4, X-Men Red: vol. 1 the Hate machine and vol. 2 Waging Peace
The new X-Men team (at the time) led by the resurrected Jean Grey went back to their roots, protecting mutants and trying to bring peace to the world.

5, Inspector Akane Tsunemori volumes 1-5
A manga based on the anime Psyco-Pass. It tells the story of the title character Akane who is a young new officer in the Ministry of Welfare’s Public Safety Bureau in near future Japan. The world building is fascinating and the characters interesting. (I’m not sure if the manga was published in English speaking world, so I haven’t reviewed them.)

Challenges
I had just six reading challenges in 2019 and I managed to complete four of them: Pick&Mix with 20 books, Action heroine with 45 books and comics, Action/Adventure with 12 books, and comics and manga challenge with 42 comics reviewed out of goal of 24. I was only one book shy of completing Mount TBR, with 23 books, but seven points were missing from the Helsinki library challenge of 50 points.

Statistics!
From my 76 books, 33 were science fiction, 19 fantasy, 1 non-fiction, and 5 short story collections with stories from multiple genres. The rest are mystery, thriller, and superhero stories. Now to be fair, lots of books are in multiple genres. For example Scalzi’s “Head on” is a police procedural as well as science fiction and yet I put in SF section. Similarly, Martin’s “Inspector Hobbs and the Blood” is also a police procedural but fantasy and I put in fantasy section. Vance’s books are planetary romance or science fantasy. I enjoy reading books which aren’t rigidly one genre or another or which blend many genres but they can be hard to classify. 🙂

Also, should a serial be in a separate category? I put the Triangle in SF but not all parts have SF content. It’s definitely mystery and probably thriller, too.

I hope you all have a wonderful year 2020!

Happy holidays to everyone who is celebrating!

One of my favorite writers, Kristine Katryn Rusch, has created a Kickstarter project to get the newest Diving universe book out. It’s a stand-alone science fiction book. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the series.

The Kickstarter has funded and even reached it’s fourth stretch goal. So, now just by supporting it with five dollars, you can get loads of cool stuff, including a new Diving universe novella, a bunch of Rusch’s short stories, and a lot of swag for writers.

Happy new year to everyone and I hope you all have a wonderful year 2019!

Happy holidays to everyone who’s celebrating!

Storybundle has a great new offering: SFWA Space Bundle is available for 21 days more. It has 20 books for just 15 dollars.

Humble Bundle’s book bundle Super Nebula Author Showcase 2018 has also a great selection of SF titles for a low price.

Storybundle is currently offering three interesting bundles:
Feminist Futures is available for 20 days while Sorcery and Steam , and Young Adult Variety are available for six more days.

They all have interesting collections of ebooks. Sorcery and Steam has Fiction River: Alchemy and Steam as part of the basic bundle.

Happy New Year!

Happy holidays to everyone who is celebrating!

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