My movie-watching has been limited to a trip to the theater to catch Beauty and the Beast in its limited engagement (just FYI: it is just as good now as it was when I was six), and several DVDs for which I have reviews forthcoming.
However, I have made considerable progress reading the books currently on my shelf, and after a solid month of various romances (historical, contemporary, steampunk, and YA paranormal), I’m planning to dive into sci-fi with The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein and Endymion by Dan Simmons.
Let’s see how quickly that breaks my brain, shall we?
EntreLeadership by Dave Ramsey
My first non-fiction book of the year! Since I’ve taken on more work responsibility in recent months, this book made its way up my to-read list pretty quickly. It’s an easy read, and a thought-provoking one. This is the book I used as a guide when I created my mission statement and my goals for this year.
I know that some people don’t necessarily care for Dave Ramsey because he’s very open about his Christian faith in his writing, but really, the business and financial principles he puts forth are solid and sensible. Whether you’re reading it for personal or business reasons, it’s a good book to pick up, especially if you’re in any sort of leadership position.
Heart of Steel by Meljean Brook
Yes, this one was already in the “read” pile when I finally posted my list, but since I read it in 2012, I’m counting it here. Also because I wanted to talk a little more about it.
I absolutely adored the first book in this series, The Iron Duke, and I bought Heart of Steel without downloading an excerpt first (first time I’ve ever done that) because I was positive I’d enjoy it. And I was right.
Heart of Steel features one of my favorite characters from the first book, Yasmeen Corsair, the airship captain. She’s a strong, badass woman, every inch the captain, holding her own in a field that is mostly reserved for men. And they respect her as one of them.
Her love interest, Archimedes Fox, is a great match for her and a great adventurer in his own right. They make a phenomenal team, both in the bed and out of it.
Plus, I love the world and the history that Brook has created here. The inventions, the zombies, the airships…I just love it. I liked The Iron Duke a little better than this one, but it’s still a damn good read. If you like romance and you are interested in steampunk, get thee to Amazon and acquire this series.
Unveiled by Courtney Milan
I picked up Courtney Milan’s ebook novella, Unlocked, in June, as a way to keep myself occupied on a plane ride. It was a great little historical romance, and I looked forward to reading more.
Unveiled is the first book in this series about the three Turner brothers: Ash, Smite, and Mark. (They were all named after Bible verses, and one of the cool things about each book is learning what their real names are. They’re each very appropriate for the characters.)
In this one, Ash, the eldest, has just revealed that the Duke of Parford was never actually married to his wife of 30 years, which makes all of his children — including his heir, Richard — bastards. Which means, according to the laws of inheritance, all of Parford’s land falls to the next closest male relative, which just happens to be Ash. (They’re fifth cousins twice removed or something like that.)
Margaret, Parford’s daughter, has decided to stay at the manor in disguise while her brothers go to London to plead their case, to spy and give them ammunition against Ash. What she doesn’t count on is finding out that her enemy actually makes a good duke, or that she’s falling for him.
This was a quick read, a good historical romance, and very enjoyable. I really liked Ash and Margaret, and the obstacles separating them were very real. Though I knew they would get a happily ever after, the question of “how” was always on my mind.
For most of the book, Ash doesn’t know who Margaret really is, and doesn’t realize that he’s actively trying to destroy her at the same time he is telling her he loves her. It’s a very interesting dichotomy, and it’s part of why I enjoyed the book so much.
In fact, I liked it so much that, in the two weeks since I read this initially, I’ve already bought and read the next two books in the series, Unclaimed and Unraveled (reviews forthcoming).
In short, if you like historical romances, pick this one up.
How about you? Read any good books lately? Or even better: read any bad ones?