It is time once again for Top Ten Tuesday! This week’s theme is Top Ten Series I’ve Been Meaning To Start But Haven’t. I’m going to do a mixed bag with this one and add in series I have started and need to finish. As always, be sure to check out The Broke and the Bookish for other Top Ten Tuesday posts and themes. (This post got a little long. Whoops! Ten points to the Hogwarts House of your choice if you make it to the bottom. )
The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare
In a time when Shadowhunters are barely winning the fight against the forces of darkness, one battle will change the course of history forever. Welcome to the Infernal Devices trilogy, a stunning and dangerous prequel to the New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments series.
The year is 1878. Tessa Gray descends into London’s dark supernatural underworld in search of her missing brother. She soon discovers that her only allies are the demon-slaying Shadowhunters—including Will and Jem, the mysterious boys she is attracted to. Soon they find themselves up against the Pandemonium Club, a secret organization of vampires, demons, warlocks, and humans. Equipped with a magical army of unstoppable clockwork creatures, the Club is out to rule the British Empire, and only Tessa and her allies can stop them…
I just started on this series maybe two days ago and I feel like I’m definitely going to be continuing with it.At the beginning of a series there is usually a lot of set up that needs to happen which is slow going to get through which can get tiresome but this seems like it is going to be a great read.
Graceling Realm by Kristin Cashore
Eight years have passed since the young Princess Bitterblue, and her country, were saved from the vicious King Leck. Now Bitterblue is the queen of Monsea, and her land is at peace.
But the influence of her father, a violent psychopath with mind-altering abilities, lives on. Her advisers, who have run the country on her behalf since Leck’s death, believe in a forward-thinking plan: to pardon all of those who committed terrible acts during Leck’s reign; and to forget every dark event that ever happened. Monsea’s past has become shrouded in mystery, and it’s only when Bitterblue begins sneaking out of her castle – curious, disguised and alone – to walk the streets of her own city, that she begins to realise the truth. Her kingdom has been under the thirty-five-year long spell of a madman, and now their only chance to move forward is to revisit the past.
Whatever that past holds.
Two thieves, who have sworn only to steal what has already been stolen, change her life forever. They hold a key to the truth of Leck’s reign. And one of them, who possesses an unidentified Grace, may also hold a key to her heart . .
I’ve read the first book of this trilogy, Graceling, and the third book, Bitterblue, which I absolutely adored. Somehow I managed to skip the second book, Fire, which I’ve been told is the best of the three. I find that hard to believe because I adore Bitterblue. It’s my safe harbor book when life gets a little too heavy. Need to read Fire to see if it really is the best of the three.
After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.
Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for four years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her … but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.
Then one of the other contestants turns up dead … quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.
I finished the first book in this series last week and I was unimpressed, I’m sorry to say. However, I’m told the next book in the series is fantastic so I’m going to give it a shot. I want to fall in love with them like so many other people have.
Stalking Jack the Ripped by Kerri Maniscalco
Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord’s daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.
Against her stern father’s wishes and society’s expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle’s laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.
I stumbled across this series on another blog just a few days ago and can’t wait to get started on it. I’ve always had a fascination with Jack the Ripper and love finding books that include him. So far this series has two books out with a third announced.
Cruel Beauty Universe by Rosamund Hodge
Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.
With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she’s ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.
But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle—a shifting maze of magical rooms—enthralls her.
As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex’s secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.
I have this book as a requested hold at the library right now and am hoping they get it in soon. When a fairy tale retelling is done well it is a thing of wonder and I hope this one is.
Menagerie by Rachel Vincent
When Delilah Marlow visits a famous traveling carnival, Metzger’s Menagerie, she is an ordinary woman in a not-quite-ordinary world. But under the macabre circus black-top, she discovers a fierce, sharp-clawed creature lurking just beneath her human veneer. Captured and put on exhibition, Delilah in her black swan burlesque costume is stripped of her worldly possessions, including her own name, as she’s forced to “perform” in town after town.
But there is breathtaking beauty behind the seamy and grotesque reality of the carnival. Gallagher, her handler, is as kind as he is cryptic and strong. The other “attractions”—mermaids, minotaurs, gryphons and kelpies—are strange, yes, but they share a bond forged by the brutal realities of captivity. And as Delilah struggles for her freedom, and for her fellow menagerie, she’ll discover a strength and a purpose she never knew existed.
Ever since I read The Night Circus I’ve had an interest in books that include an odd circus. Weirdly specific, right? Right now the Menagerie series has two books published and a third announced.
Dr Pimms, Intermillennial Sleuth series by L.J.M. Owen
Archaeologist Dr Elizabeth Pimms thoroughly enjoys digging up old skeletons.
But when she is called home from Egypt after a family loss, she has to sacrifice her passions for the sake of those around her.
Attempting to settle into her new role as a librarian, while also missing her boyfriend, Elizabeth is distracted from her woes by a new mystery: a royal Olmec cemetery, discovered deep in the Mexican jungle, with a 3000-year-old ballplayer who just might be a woman.
She soon discovers there are more skeletons to deal with than those covered in dirt and dust.
Suitable for readers young and old, Olmec Obituary is the first novel in a delightful cosy crime series: Dr Pimms, Intermillennial Sleuth. Really cold cases.
I bring this book/series up every couple of weeks and I still haven’t been able to get a hold of it. The only way I can find it is as an overpriced e-book and I want a hard copy which, apparently, is difficult to find outside of Australia. I want it. GIMME!
Thomas De Quincey series by David Morrell
Gaslit London is brought to its knees in David Morrell’s brilliant historical thriller.
Thomas De Quincey, infamous for his memoir ‘Confessions of an English Opium-Eater’, is the major suspect in a series of ferocious mass murders identical to ones that terrorized London forty-three years earlier.
The blueprint for the killings seems to be De Quincey’s essay “On Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts.” Desperate to clear his name but crippled by opium addiction, De Quincey is aided by his devoted daughter Emily and a pair of determined Scotland Yard detectives.
In ‘Murder as a Fine Art’, David Morrell plucks De Quincey, Victorian London, and the Ratcliffe Highway murders from history. Fogbound streets become a battleground between a literary star and a brilliant murderer, whose lives are linked by secrets long buried but never forgotten.
My love affair with good historical fiction knows no bounds. I recently got a copy of the first book in this series at an excellent price from Thriftbooks and am very much looking forward to reading it. I’m saving it for a rainy day and sour mood but still itch to pick it up every time I walk by my book case.
Lady Julia Grey series by Deanna Raybourn
“LET THE WICKED BE ASHAMED, AND LET THEM BE SILENT IN THE GRAVE.”
These ominous words, slashed from the pages of a book of Psalms, are the last threat that the darling of London society, Sir Edward Grey, receives from his killer. Before he can show them to Nicholas Brisbane, the private inquiry agent he has retained for his protection, Sir Edward collapses and dies at his London home, in the presence of his wife, Julia, and a roomful of dinner guests.
Prepared to accept that Edward’s death was due to a long-standing physical infirmity, Julia is outraged when Brisbane visits and suggests that Sir Edward has been murdered. It is a reaction she comes to regret when she discovers the damning paper for herself, and realizes the truth.
Determined to bring her husband’s murderer to justice, Julia engages the enigmatic Brisbane to help her investigate Edward’s demise. Dismissing his warnings that the investigation will be difficult, if not impossible, Julia presses forward, following a trail of clues that lead her to even more unpleasant truths, and ever closer to a killer who waits expectantly for her arrival.
I have quite the love of Raybourn’s other series, The Veronica Speedwell Mysteries, and see no reason why I wouldn’t fall for Lady Julia Grey as well. Historical fiction? Check. Mystery? Check. Bad ass leading lady? Check. Not to mention Raybourn’s writing itself is just lovely. If there weren’t so many books in this series I’d have started it already but once I get started I know I won’t want to stop.
The Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss
Told in Kvothe’s own voice, this is the tale of the magically gifted young man who grows to be the most notorious wizard his world has ever seen.
The intimate narrative of his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, his years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, and his life as a fugitive after the murder of a king form a gripping coming-of-age story unrivaled in recent literature.
A high-action story written with a poet’s hand, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that will transport readers into the body and mind of a wizard.
I’ve been wanting to start on this series for a while but, I have to say, it’s a little intimidating. Just the first book is 662 pages which is a bit of a monster (at least for my attention span) and Rothfuss’s reputation precedes him. I’ll start on this series one day when I’m feeling like conquering the world or something.
I got seriously long winded on this one, folks. Sorry. I probably could have left out the book descriptions but I like having them here. That way someone can go, “Yeah! I want to read that, too!” after just giving the description here a quick peruse without having to go look the book up. For getting to the end, as promised, ten point to your Hogwarts House! (Go Ravenclaw!)