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I haven't been active in updating this journal for a while now. I guess at some point a few years ago, I just got burned out on reviewing and writing in general after having done that very actively for several years. It also didn't help that much of fandom moved over to Tumblr etc. which is just not suited for long text comments or in-depth analysis of books/tv/movies/whatever. This year I decided to try to revive this journal a bit and at least try to make monthly book/media comments which shouldn't be that intimidating. So, here goes, January reading: 1. Sergei Lukjanenko: Viimeinen partio [Posledniy Dozor] Fourth book on Lukyanenko's Last Watch series was just as entertaining as the previous parts have been. The Finnish translation is good and flows nicely. 2. Kelley Armstrong: Deceptions Third book in Armstrong's Cainsville series gives some answers and offers a partial resolution to the main character's romantical problems. The series still feels uncomplete, and I wouldn't be surprised if there are a couple more books in the offering. 3. Siiri Enoranta: Nukkuu lapsi viallinen Ihastuttava nuortenkirja, joka sijoittuu Toisen maailmansodan jälkeiseen Suomeen. Kirjan päähenkilö on nuori elämäniloinen tyttö, joka on kuolemassa tuberkuloosiin. Toisena kertojana on elämään ja kuolemaan väsynyt kuolemanenkeli, joka saapuu tytön luo, mutta yllättävien tapahtumien myötä kumpikin heistä saa uuden tilaisuuden. 4. Laura Anne Gilman: An Interrupted Cry (e-book, novella) Set in Gilman's Retrievers/PSI world, the story lets young Ellen take the center stage in a story involving a new fatae species and some missing kids (plus missing Danny). 5. Seanan McGuire: Heaps of Pearl (e-book, short story) This short story tells about the first meeting between Baron Patrick Twycross and the soon-to-be Duchess of Saltmist. Very nice look behind the scenes on these two characters. 6. Kristin Cast (ed.): Kisses from Hell (e-book) OK urban fantasy anthology, but nothing too memorable. 7. Anni Nupponen & Christine Thorel (ed.): Kristallimeri: tarinoita merirosvoista Kiva eri genrejä sekoitteleva merirosvotarinakokoelma. 8. Seth Dickinson: The Traitor Baru Cormorant The premise and a lot of the issues on colonialism, rebellion, and leadership were very interesting, but somehow I just wasn't enamored by this book. It was a nice read, but I wouldn't read it again and have been comtemplating donating my once-read hardcover copy to the local library. 9. Noelle Stevenson: Nimona (graphic novel) Such a delightful book! Love it! The Kingdom's big bad sorcerer gets a new apprentice in teenaged girl named Nimona, who is also a shapeshifter. In the end, he has to curb her bloodthirstiness as he best can, deal with his friendship issues with the kingdom's golden knight, get saved by Nimona, and save her in turn. The drawing style might throw some off, but the story is worth checking out. Highly recommended! 10.-11., 13., 15. N. K. Jemisin: The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, The Broken Kingdoms, The Kingdom of Gods , and Shades in Shadow: An Inheritance Triptych Very nice high fantasy series, though I preferred the first and second books over the third and the e-book story collection. A long ago one of the three main Gods murdered the Goddess of the trinity and imprisoned the other God with some of his children in service to the ruling family. The story involved them seeking their freedom and revenge on their jailor, but also the lives of them and the people coming into contact with them. 12. Patricia Briggs: Shifting Shadows: Stories From the World of Mercy Thompson (e-book) This collection gathers together all short stories in the Mercy Thompson world that have been published in various venues. There are also a couple original stories in addition to the reprints. This is a nice collection for Mercy fans. 14. Naomi Novik: Uprooted (e-book) Novik's story is a delightful fantasy that could be read by both older teens and adults. The story is set in a fairy tale-esque valley that is peaceful and harmlessly rural, but threatened by the malevolent forest that borders it. The forest is kept in check by the mysterious Dragon, the wizard guarding the valley. Every ten years he chooses one valley girl to serve him and the time is nearing again. The narrator and every one else in the valley is sure that he'll choose her best friend, but to everyone's shock he chooses her instead. She's messy, used to wandering around the outskirts of the forest on her own and quite baffled on why she got chosen. Her growth is an integral part of the book and also elemental in fighting against the evil forces in the forest. This was such a wonderful book! It's high on my list for Hugo nominations on Best Novel.
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