TOP TEN TUESDAY – BOOKS I LOVED SO MUCH I HAD TO GET MULTIPLE COPIES

Hi everyone! Sorry I’ve been gone for a bit — I’m having a hard time with stress lately and well, some things have to give. I’m still around, and I’m still reading, you just might see me blog-hopping a tiny bit less. I hope you had a fantastic weekend, my friends!

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. The topic this week is a BOOKS I LOVED SO MUCH I HAD TO GET MULTIPLE COPIES. There’s a lot of these — so I knew this week’s topic would be an easy one!

Song of Achilles, The Raven Cycle, Station Eleven, and A Court of Thorns and Roses I read on an e-reader for the first time. I loved them so much that I ended up buying physical copies of them!

The Shadow of the Gods, and The Drowned Woods I received e-ARCs for, but ended up buying physical copies for my bookshelf!

The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy and A Taste of Gold and Iron I received e-ARCs for, but also bought the actual e-book for! I plan to buy physical copies of these, too, but I just don’t have the extra money right now!

Outlander, I have in e-book, mass-market paperback, AND a personalized signed hardcover. I used to have the whole series in tradeback, too, but my mom kept those when they moved to a different state!

I have the entire Mistborn series in mass-market paperback, but I also have it in e-book, too!

If I had to guess what book I own the most copies of, I’m going to say Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. It’s my favorite book of the series, and I own an e-book version, at least three paperbacks, and four hardbacks (My original hardback, the one I bought to replace it after the binding broke, the Juniper books version, and the illustrated copy.). I do not and never will condone JK Rowling, but I cannot pretend that HP never existed.

What book do you own the most copies of?

TOP TEN TUESDAY – ANTICIPATED BOOKS FROM SECOND HALF OF 2022

Hi everyone! I hope you had a good holiday — if you celebrate / happen to be American / happen to have July 4th off. I wouldn’t say we celebrated — we were just outside all day to my toddler’s extreme happiness. Now that we’re all exhausted from being in the sun, well, here’s my Top Ten Tuesday post!

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS COMING OUT IN THE SECOND HALF OF 2022. That’s a mouthful of a topic this week, but one that’s rather easy to fill out, honestly.

Most of these I haven’t read yet, but the first three I have! My review for The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy will be out later this week, so keep an eye out for it. I absolutely adored that book. I’m stupidly excited for The Lost Metal — it’s a Sanderson book set on my favorite world of his! And don’t even get me started on A Dowry of Blood. I’m desperately hoping for an ARC of it, still, but who knows. I probably won’t get one. The rest of these books, well… I’M JUST REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THESE, OKAY? Do we share any of the same books? Let me know!

TOP TEN TUESDAY – BOOKS I WISH HAD AN EPILOGUE

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is BOOKS I WISH HAD AN EPILOGUE. I’m going to twist this a little bit, and really make this more…books I wish had shown the characters happy more often. Because that’s what epilogues are, right? A chance to show the characters after everything has gone down, after everything has settled.

Some of these totally have epilogues. Some of these are the very beginnings of series, and thus you do see more of the characters. But like I said — I wanted more with these characters! I wanted to watch them live their lives together happily. I would, without a doubt, read about most of these characters making dinner together, or doing the dishes, or going on a walk.. Slice of life stuff, you know?

What books do you wish had an epilogue?

LGBTQ+ FANTASY BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS

As I’ve read quite a few recently, I thought I’d make a little recommendation post of LGBTQ+ fantasy novels! (This is adapted from a twitter thread that I posted here.) If a novel is in this post, it means the core characters fall under the LGBTQ+ spectrum. If you have suggestions that you’d like to add, go ahead and leave a comment! This is by no means an exhaustive list!

WE ALL FALL DOWN by Rose Szabo — There’s not a single straight person in this book. The whole book is about fate, and how the ‘wheel’ will continue to turn regardless of what people try to do to influence it. This comes out in June! Read my review of an ARC copy here.

A MARVELLOUS LIGHT by Freya Marske — This takes place at the tail end of the 1800’s, in an England where magic exists, but is unknown to most. A magical conspiracy is taking place, and its up to our heroes to find out what’s going on! Read my review here.

A TASTE OF GOLD AND IRON by Alexandra Rowland — Conspiracy, romance, and fealty all take center stage here. The prince of Arasht is a cinnamon roll desperate to prove his loyalty to his sister, the sultan. It’s a bodyguard romance, folks. This comes out in August! Read my review of an ARC copy here.

THE PRIORY OF THE ORANGE TREE by Samantha Shannon — Your typical chunky (800+ pages) fantasy book with all the old tropes, but with a gay queen and her lady-in-waiting that’s secretly a spy. There’s dragons, magic, and old prophecies that come to light.

FOUNDRYSIDE by Robert Jackson Bennett — This is a tightly plotted fantasy book that takes place in the city-state that is based off of Venice. There’s talking keys, and well, the coolest damn magic system I’ve seen in a long time. Read my review here.

THE MAGPIE LORD by KJ Charles — Set in Victorian England where magic is a thing — this is a mystery trilogy where a man inherits his title and all that comes with it. He hires someone to come help with a magical problem, & well…[waves hands] magic happens. This is a three book series!

WITCHMARK by CL Polk — Set in an alternate/unique version of Edwardian England where magic is both a curse and a boon. There’s gay romance, betrayal, and fantastic world-building. This is on the shorter side at 318 pages, but there are two sequels!

MALICE by Heather Walter — What if Maleficent had fallen in love with Sleeping Beauty? That’s all you need to know, friends. Read my review here. There’s a sequel coming out this year!

PALADIN’S HOPE by T. Kingfisher — This is the third book in Kingfisher’s Paladin series, so keep that in mind, but it’s gay, darlings! There’s a lich-doctor who works to find out who or what killed the dead, and a paladin who’s god is dead. Murder mystery! If you haven’t read the first books in this series, I cannot recommend them enough!

WOLFSONG by TJ Klune — Do you like werewolf pack dynamics? Do you like the idea of mates? then you’ll like Wolfsong. You get huge werewolf family who gather in a lost kid, and welcome him as one of their own. This is a 4 book series.

Have you read any of these? What LGBTQ+ books are your favorite?

ARC REVIEW: A TASTE OF GOLD AND IRON BY ALEXANDRA ROWLAND

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Thank you to Netgalley and Tor publishing for providing an ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

SYNOPSIS

The Goblin Emperor meets “Magnificent Century” in Alexandra Rowland’s A Taste of Gold and Iron, where a queer central romance unfolds in a fantasy world reminiscent of the Ottoman Empire.

Kadou, the shy prince of Arasht, finds himself at odds with one of the most powerful ambassadors at court—the body-father of the queen’s new child—in an altercation which results in his humiliation.

To prove his loyalty to the queen, his sister, Kadou takes responsibility for the investigation of a break-in at one of their guilds, with the help of his newly appointed bodyguard, the coldly handsome Evemer, who seems to tolerate him at best. In Arasht, where princes can touch-taste precious metals with their fingers and myth runs side by side with history, counterfeiting is heresy, and the conspiracy they discover could cripple the kingdom’s financial standing and bring about its ruin.

A Taste of Gold and Iron was a book I was looking forward to IMMENSELY this year. When I got approved for an ARC last week, I may have screamed a little out loud. I feel absolutely no shame about that because this book has ONE HUNDRED PERCENT lived up to the hype. What hype, you might ask? Well, this book (and its absolutely gorgeous cover) has been making the rounds on fandom Twitter as a book to watch out for. Even the author has been hyping up their own work — AS THEY SHOULD. Oh my god, as they should.

A Taste of Gold and Iron takes place in a fictional country named Arasht that is ruled by a lady-sultan. Her adult brother, Kadou, is an anxious adorable cinnamon roll. For the first bit of the novel, he comes across as a little bit spineless, a lot squishy, and in need of some serious comfort. As you read, it becomes very obvious that Kadou is anything but spineless.

Through a series of events that I won’t spoil, Evemer becomes Kadou’s bodyguard. Evemer is a serious, duty-before-all sort of man who doesn’t think very much of his new charge. This changes, of course, and they end up in an absolutely adorable will-they-won’t-they tangle. I am happy to report that oh yes they do. The romance in A Taste of Gold and Iron reminds me of the best fanfictions out there. There’s pining, and there’s the whole oh-they-can’t-love-me-I’m-worthless/undeserving thing. There’s the only one bed trope, Evemer and Kadou wash each other’s hair, they “fake” kiss to disguise themselves, and a million other cute tropey things. There are so many absolutely delicious tropes in this book.

Alexandra Rowland has created an absolute masterpiece of a world in Arasht. My favorite bit of world building is the fact that gender is not binary. There are men, women, and a third nonbinary gender as well. Men wear long hair, jewelry, and make up. Marriage can be between anyone without any issue. Arasht is ruled by a female sultan who doesn’t have to marry if she doesn’t want to, in fact it’s better for the throne if she doesn’t. The captain of the guard is a badass older woman.

Many, many people have compared A Taste of Gold and Iron to The Goblin Emperor, but I don’t see that as an appropriate comparison at all. I hated The Goblin Emperor because it was boring, hard to understand, and everyone had a name that started with the same letter. I couldn’t follow anything in that novel without backtracking a million times to double check myself. A Taste of Gold and Iron has absolutely none of those issues. The book has plenty of action, and while the world is completely fictional, it is extremely easy to follow.

I can’t wait for this book to come out so I can recommend it to absolutely everyone I know. This is going to be the next big fandom out there. Kadou and Evemer are extremely shippable and I can just see their numbers on AO3 going up, up, up.

A Taste of Gold and Iron comes out  August 30, 2022.

Add to your Goodreads, or preorder at at the following links:

GOODREADS | BOOKSHOP.ORG | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE