Weekly Mash-Up #106 Book Mail!!

We all love book mail!  Believe it or not, I still had some gift money left over from Christmas so these are my belated Christmas gifts to myself that have arrived over the past week…

My friend Michelle recommended the epic fantasy, The Deed of Paksenarrion, as something I must read, and after checking out the synopsis I totally agree!  Finding all three books in one was an extra bonus!  And as a fan of Louise Erdrich and Jane Harper, these were must-haves as well.

And, of course, there’s these…

I believe I’ve mentioned the Death’s Head Press series of “splatter westerns” they’ve been putting out over the past year, all written by different authors with the awesome cover artwork by Justin T. Coons.  I recently read the first in the series, The Magpie Coffin by Wile E. Young, and loved it!  However, I’ve been seeing mixed reviews on several others in this series so I decided to opt for the two that called out to me.

And as I was writing this up earlier today, our lovely mail carrier delivered this to my mailbox!!

I am a huge fan of Australian author Alan Baxter, and this collection of five novellas set in a strange small town with even stranger inhabitants called out to me when I first heard about it!  Can’t wait to visit The Gulp!

The Week in Books

Sin Child by Angela Howard — 4 out of 5 stars

This is not an easy book to read.  Angela Howard was extremely brave to come forward with her story of the systematic abuse and neglect she suffered throughout her childhood and teenage years, not just from sexually abusive stepfathers, but the emotional and physical torments from her own mother and grandparents.  I applaud Ms. Howard’s bravery, but from a reader’s standpoint I do wish things had been written a bit more cohesively, and perhaps extra attention given to the chapters highlighting her escapes and successes (unless there is a follow-up book in the works, in which case I understand not focusing on the good just yet).  Highly recommend.

Your Turn To Suffer by Tim Waggoner — 4 out of 5 stars

This is my first foray into Tim Waggoner’s mind and let’s just say, it was a trip!!  And I liked it!!  Lori is targeted by a group calling themselves The Cabal, demanding that she “confess and atone…or suffer.”  What follows is a mix of mayhem, violence, and a trip to one of the strangest and creepiest worlds I’ve read about in a while.  If you’re a fan of Lovecraft-inspired splatter horror, then this book is for you!  Thanks to Flame Tree Press for the early ecopy!

All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren — 3 out of 5 stars

I don’t know where to begin with this one.  I’ve been wanting to read this classic for some time now, and when I started it back in late September 2020 I was intrigued…for the first 75 pages or so.  Then **crickets** for the next 400+ pages, with a renewed surge of interest in the last 100 pages or so.  This is not the story I was led to believe it to be.  Everyone talks about this prize-winning novel as showcasing the rise and fall of politician Willie Stark, and how Willie Stark should be considered one of the best fictional characters in modern literature.  I’m scratching my head on that.  The bulk of the story is about Stark’s lackey and the story’s narrator, Jack Burden.  Let me put it this way:  there is nearly 100 pages devoted to stuff that happened in the mid 1800’s that have nothing to do with Willie Stark, let alone the current timeline narrative;  it’s all Jack and his “family.”  I was expecting something totally different, and while I appreciate the writing and understand why this won a Pulitzer, I was beyond disappointed that it was nothing like it’s been portrayed to be…of course, that IS how politics work so….hmm…

Stay safe and Happy Reading!

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