This Top Five Tuesday, Bionic Book Worm has asked us to flail about books we don’t normally flail about. This was actually a harder challenge than I thought, because I tend to read pretty mainstream books that I am very happy to flail about. What I’ve collected here are books that don’t often make my various lists, some of which are lesser known titles of better known authors.
THE DIABOLIC by S. J. Kincaid
There’s a frequent problem in YA where the jacket promises danger and tension and lives on the line, but the plot in reality fails to deliver on all of those things. That’s not the case in THE DIABOLIC, a sci-fi tale where a look-a-like bodyguard takes the place of her charge when she is summoned to the mad Emperor’s court. There, the bodyguard has to navigate court intrigue and rumors of rebellion, without anyone being wise to her true identity. This is one of a few sad instances on the list where I fully intended to read the sequel and then…didn’t. Sigh.
WARCROSS by Marie Lu
Here is entry the second on my list of books where I fully intended to read the sequel but haven’t yet. (In fact, I could probably fill a month’s TBR with part two of duologies I haven’t finished…). This was a fantastically fun read that also managed to break my heart. It helps that it’s a video game book that actually feels like it was written by someone who understand video games (and knowing what I know of Marie Lu, it was). WARCROSS ends on a cliffhanger and I really really need to read WILDCARD.
THE GRACE OF KINGS by Ken Liu
This is such a unique book that I often am hard-pressed to find a list to put it on. For one thing, it is MASSIVE (like 800 pages massive). It’s silk-punk fantasy tale set in an Asian-inspired world, a sweeping epic following a gigantic cast of characters as a rebellion against the emperor begins to stir. The first two books of the trilogy are already released, and the final book is on the horizon. There’s betrayal, battles, twists of fate, and gods who nudge things ever so slightly to their liking. Plus, book 2 picks up as the next generation of characters are beginning to hit their teens, and political maneuvering over which of them to support affects the direction of the country as a whole.
FORTUNE’S PAWN by Rachel Bach
This sci-fi trilogy is written by Rachel Bach, who also writes fantasy under Rachel Aaron. It is a fun action-packed adventure of a female mercenary who guards spaceships with the help of her trusty power armor. There’s mystery and intrigue and a lot of punching people and aliens in the face and it’s just a rollicking good time. Also, I should finish book three.
TERRIER by Tamora Pierce
A lot of love is (rightfully) given to Pierce’s earlier works, the LIONESS QUARTET and THE IMMORTALS and PROTECTOR OF THE SMALL. But I have a soft spot in my heart for BEKA COOPER, a prequel trilogy about the ancestor of George Cooper, King of Thieves. Unlike her roguish descendant, however, Beka was part of a fledgling police force in the city an investigative guardswoman who used her Gift to talk to ghosts to solve murders and conspiracies. These books are a bit thicker than Pierce’s first ventures into Tortall, which allow you to snuggle up for a fun fantasy murder mystery.