Monday Mash-Up #056 and #057 I am Officially Tired of Winter!!

I’m posting this a bit early from my scheduled 2/10 date, but I don’t know how my internet and power will be then so I’m sharing now while I can.   🙂

It’s been a year since my last rant about winter sucking, and while this year we avoided record snowfalls and sleet storms knocking out power for days, instead we’ve had this….anywhere from 5 to 15 inches of rain in a 48 hour period, on top of the earlier snow and the minor flooding from last week; landslides, flooding, even more torrential rains…..  *sigh*

This is a typical shot of what’s been going on pretty much throughout western Washington state……

And this pic hit a little closer to home, outside of Mt. Rainier National Park.  And don’t let the pic fool you!  That muck is anywhere from 3 to 6 feet deep, covering a large amount of the local highway (and only one of several major landslides closing roads throughout the state).

We’ve been lucky at my house, only dealing with power and internet outages, as well as some damage to our driveway.  Oh, and a mini moat that popped up behind our house but is thankfully draining down the hill and not under our foundation.

Yep, I’m ready for spring.  The only bad thing is spring is usually the flood season around here.  More heavy *sigh*.

However, when I wasn’t worrying about the hill behind us coming down or trying to navigate the flooded roads, I read.  And I read a lot.  Added bonus was having my Kindle this year, I could read all I wanted when the lights went out, not having to worry about draining the batteries on my headlamp!!

 The Week in Books

The Roo by Alan Baxter — 5 out of 5 stars!!

My  Goodreads review—  I am a huge fan of creature feature horror stories, so when I first saw the glimmer of this tale on twitter, I knew I had to follow and read. I was not disappointed!! What started out as a real news story about a rather assertive kangaroo harassing a small Australian town quickly turned into the call for a horror story, and Alan Baxter stepped up. This is the epitome of fun horror—I laughed, I was grossed out, I cheered on the “good guys,” and I wished the wrath of The Roo on others. Read this now and have fun!

Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward — 5 out of 5 stars!!

Part memoir, part memorial.  This book hooked me into Jesmyn Ward’s world immediately.  I could feel her pain, her hatred, and her love.  It’s an uncomfortable read at worst, a powerful tribute to her brother and the other men in her life at its best.  I highly recommend this one.

August by Callan Wink — 4 out of 5 stars!

I will be posting a full review closer to the publication date of March 31, 2020.  I do want to thank Random House Publishing Group and NetGalley for sending me an ecopy for review.

Miscreations:   Gods, Monstrosities, and Other Horrors edited by Doug Murano and Michael Bailey — 4 out of 5 stars!

What exactly are monsters?  There is the Frankenstein monster, there are the monsters living under our beds, there are those we create in our minds just to get through the day.  This short story collection offers a bit of everything, from modern takes of old-school monsters to things I could never have imagined.  There’s some great talent here, including Josh Malerman, Victor LaValle, Bracken MacLeod, Stephanie Wytovich…….the list goes on and on.  It ranges from the absurd to the creepy, I recommend giving it a shot.

The Way of Shadows by Brent Weeks — 4 out of 5 stars!

I don’t know why it took me so long to read this, but once I was able to sit down and get into the story, I couldn’t put it down.  My biggest complaint:  the sheer number of characters that go by more than one name (and I’m not talking about a gradual thing, I’m talking about in the same paragraph a character will be called two different names)!!!   I hate that!!!  Pick a name and stick to it, especially in the same fucking paragraph!!  Otherwise, I thought it was a pretty solid start for a fantasy trilogy and left me wanting to know more about pretty much everyone!

Spicy Constellations and Other Recipes by Chad Lutzke — 4 out of 5 stars!

I am a huge fangirl of Lutzke’s, and I have to say, this short story collection took me off-guard!!  These stories show a very different side, including some dark humor and paranormal stuff that I haven’t seen in his writing before.  If you haven’t read anything by Chad Lutzke, you might want to check this anthology out first as I think it will give you a good idea of his style, be it dark humor or subtle horror.

Inheritance:  A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love by Dani Shapiro — 3 out of 5 stars

2.5 stars    I don’t know how I would react if I found out my parent wasn’t biologically my parent.  I get that the author, raised as an Orthodox Jew and finding out that half of her DNA was comprised of blonde Protestants, went into a stage of shock.  But what I didn’t like about this book (that could easily be a stepping stone for others going through similar situations) was the sense of a pouting, petulant child stomping feet and screaming for no reason until finally mollified by a piece of candy.  At one point, I was going to just give this one star and move on, especially knowing that the author was beyond lucky to have found out the information she sought within a few days (compared to years, if ever, for most mortals).  But I became more interested in the others who aided and put up with her martyrdom, so that raised the rating.

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I hope you are all well, and I will be back soon, weather permitting!!

Until then, Happy Reading!!!

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