Dancing With My Shelf: May Reads

I can safely say that I made up for the reading drought of prior months. So many interesting books! OMG!

Grace Draven’s Wraith Kings series continues to rock. Vanessa North’s upcoming f/f romance Roller Girl is lovely. Tiffany Reisz’s twisted The Bourbon Thief marks her as the 21st Century answer to V.C. Andrews. And, honestly, I would read a Tang Dynasty grocery list written by Jeannie Lin.

Without further ado, here are the books that gripped me in May!

GambledAwayEidolon by Grace Draven (fantasy romance)
Wylding Hall by Elizabeth Hand (horror, novella)
The Liar’s Dice by Jeannie Lin, in Gambled Away (historical romance, novella)
Playing With Fire by Kate Meader (contemporary romance)
Roller Girl by Vanessa North (out 7/25, contemporary LGBT romance)
Seduced by Molly O’Keefe (historical romance, novella)
Tempted by Molly O’Keefe (historical romance, novella)
Redeemed by Molly O’Keefe, in Gambled Away (historical romance, novella)
TheBourbonThiefLooking for a Complication by Tamsen Parker (contemporary LGBT romance, novella/short story)
Borrowing Death by Cathy Pegau (out 6/28, historical mystery)
Be My Fantasy by Alisha Rai (erotic romance, novella)
The Bourbon Thief by Tiffany Reisz (out 6/28, mainstream fiction)
The Vines by Christopher Rice (horror)
One Minute to Midnight by Nico Rosso (out 7/18, romantic suspense)
Beyond Ecstasy by Kit Rocha (dystopian erotic romance)

Tom Hiddleston as Bond? Paging Dr. No!

tumblr_mzz5pmLV5C1sgxceqo5_250I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the campaign for “the Internet’s Boyfriend” Tom Hiddleston as the new James Bond. For an actor, there’s no doubt that the opportunity to play Bond is next level. It’s a long-running, wildly successful, franchise. You go from stolid period dramas to a blockbuster paycheck. Everybody knows your name. (That was even the gist of the Chris Cornell theme song of Daniel Craig’s entrée into the series, Casino Royale). But, as a viewer, and as someone who is known to have a bit of a crush on Tom Hiddleston, I just cannot get my head around this idea.

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Feeling Shelfish: April Reads

I feel like I got my reading mojo back in April…probably because I wasn’t doing much else. April showers bring SO MUCH TIME INDOORS. At any rate, here’s the rundown of the books I really enjoyed!

StarDustStar Dust by Emma Barry and Genevieve Turner (historical romance)
Down to Ash by Melissa Blue (contemporary romance)
Sutphin Boulevard by Santino Hassell (LGBT erotic romance)
Sunset Park by Santino Hassell (LGBT erotic romance)
Scratch by Rhonda Helms (new adult contemporary romance)
The Pages of the Mind by Jeffe Kennedy (out 5/31, fantasy romance)
The Warlord and the Nightingale by Jeannie Lin (historical romance)
Fairest by Marissa Meyer (young adult cyberpunk/SFF)
Her Every Wish by Courtney Milan (historical romance)
Uprooted by Naomi Novik (fantasy)
Rise of a Queen by Chanta Rand (historical romance)
Taken by Charlotte Stein (contemporary romance)
The Hidden Blade by Sherry Thomas (historical romance, prequel)
So Right by Rebekah Weatherspoon (erotic romance/contemporary romance)

•I’ve decided to quit listing whether something is e-book or print, as that’s sort of irrelevant to the enjoyment of the story itself.

•Looking back over the past few years, I realize that my genre designations might be a little loosey-goosey.

•On the TBR for May? Alisha Rai’s Be My Fantasy and Kate Meader’s Playing With Fire.

Shelf Indulgence: March Reads

I swear I read more than this in March. It’s also possible that Anne Bishop’s latest Others novel ate my brain.

markedinfleshThe Road to Silver Plume by Tamara Allen (historical romantic suspense)
Marked in Flesh by Anne Bishop (urban fantasy)
To One Hundred by Melissa Blue (erotic romance)
Mayday by Olivia Dade (out 5/10, contemporary romance)
Scratch by Rhonda Helms (new adult contemporary romance)
Give it All by Cara McKenna (romantic suspense)
Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older (young adult, urban fantasy)
Silence for the Dead by Simone St. James (gothic, historical romantic suspense)

In the backlist adventures, I picked up Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor and devoured it. SO good!

A Sense of Shelf: February Reads

How is it March already?! Fortunately, for a short month, February still provided plenty of time to pick up a good book! Here’s what I read and really enjoyed.

BeyondRuinThe Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan (women’s fiction, contemporary romance)
Cold-hearted Rake by Lisa Kleypas (historical romance)
Wicked Sexy Liar by Christina Lauren (new adult erotic romance)
The True King of Dahaar by Tara Pammi (contemporary category-length romance)
Act Like It by Lucy Parker (contemporary romance)
Beyond Ruin by Kit Rocha (postapocalyptic erotic romance)
Fortune Favors the Wicked by Theresa Romain (out 3/29, historical romance)
Consumed By Fire by Anne Stuart (romantic suspense)
Summer Chaparral by Genevieve Turner (historical romance)

Shelf Esteem: January Reads

I’m kicking off 2016 right! This month, I read books that scared me to pieces (Okorafor’s), books that made me hungry (Rochon’s and Rosso’s), and books that scorched Lagoonmy Kindle (O’Keefe’s and Perry’s). What they all have in common is that they’re highly enjoyable page-turners that I’d recommend to anyone! Also? Emma Barry’s fictional election cycle is way more entertaining than our actual election cycle.

Party Lines by Emma Barry (contemporary romance)
Everything I Left Unsaid by M. O’Keefe (erotic romance)
The Truth About Him by M. O’Keefe (erotic romance)
Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor (science fiction)
One MAllYouCanHandleore Night With You by Lisa Marie Perry (out 3/1, contemporary category romance)
Unteachable by Leah Raeder (erotic romance)
Her Cowboy Protector by Roxie Rivera (romantic suspense)
Blank Canvas by Kit Rocha (postapocalyptic erotic romance, short story)
All You Can Handle by Farrah Rochon (contemporary romance)
Countdown to Zero Hour by Nico Rosso (out 2/22, romantic suspense)

Mala’s Best of 2015 Pop Culture Round-Up

Recapping a year in pop culture is HARD — especially since real-life circumstances resulted in me consuming a heck of a lot more media than usual! I found myself reading a ton, avoiding the movie theaters — and dropping TV shows if they made me unhappy or failed to hold my interest.

This is the year I broke up with Arrow, Nashville, Once Upon a Time, The Americans, The Blacklist and Broadchurch. I flirted with a Days of our Lives reunion, but it didn’t last. I bid a tearful goodbye to Hart of Dixie and Justified. I tried Daredevil, The Fall, and Master of None but couldn’t sustain relationships. Haven and Defiance soured for me, and for the network, too, since they were both canceled.

But it wasn’t all disappointments and downers! Here is my look back at what worked, what I loved the most, and what got me through 2015. I’ve even linked to extra squee!

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