Summer Reading List

Hey y’all.

It’s been a minute, as they say here in the Deep South, since I’ve posted. I took a little blog hiatus over the winter.

Now that doesn’t mean a writing hiatus. Oh no. But I’ll get to all that.

After a rather challenging fall – for me, for a lot of people I love – I went into a bit of hibernation. I spent the cold months craving comfort: comfort food, comfort liquor and comfort reading. All winter, I consumed what seemed to be endless curry – I wanted all the spicy, coconut-y and noodle-y goodness I could get my hands on.

I baked a lot of pies.

It wasn’t just me, either. My sister, who normally can subsist on a green juice, half a salad and a perfect Manhattan, reported whipping up pulled pork in the crockpot and a cheesecake.

And, though it perhaps seems incompatible with the concept of hibernating, I also craved increased physical movement. My running, which had become spotty and sporadic since about the sixth month of my pregnancy, became a regular routine again.

Hey, balance, right?

In line with the exercise, my writing became much more disciplined than it had been in months, too. I finished the last round of edits (for now) on my first book, which has a new title! Thief of my Love is now A Featured Affair, and I really, really hope to have some news about it in the very near future. I can tell you that even though I’ve been working on this book for longer than I want to admit (another post for another day), I’m still in love with Justine and Daniel and can’t wait to share their story.

As for the hibernation, it waned in the springtime, as proper hibernations do. Once warmer temperatures hit I poked my head up for air, lightened my diet (waving a sad, albeit temporary goodbye to the curries and pies), and swapped the running tights for shorts.

And now here we are, full on summer in the Deep South. The heat and humidity have set in. I don’t mind – I’m a hot weather gal, so this climate suits me.

Which brings me to the real topic of this post, which is summer reading!

We have a bunch of trips planned for this summer, mostly to visit family, which is a-ok with us. I am so looking forward to some down time by various pools and beaches with people I love (though I am less looking forward to adventures on a plane with a toddler, but again, that’s another post). Of course, my Kindle goes where I go, so here’s what’s on tap:

  • What am I a sucker for, more than anything else? A series. And a series with eleven books that get rave reviews and RITA nominations?! Sign me up! I don’t know how or why I have waited so long to read Julie Anne Long’s Pennyroyal Green series, but thank goodness I finally started them. These are just delightful historical romances, total comfort food, with such gorgeous writing. I got sucked into them all winter and didn’t come up for air for months. I finally moved onto some other books, but am excited to get back to the next one on my list: Book 7, A Notorious Countess Confesses.
  • Last fall I was about to start a much-anticipated post-apocalyptic vampire book, the final in a trilogy (a series!) but suddenly I couldn’t handle vampires, or the apocalypse. I think a beach is the perfect place, actually, to read about both of these things. A good book will draw you into its world completely, but the heat and the sun and the sand will help me from getting in too deep. So, Justin Cronin’s The City of Mirrors is definitely on the list. I’m looking forward to finding out what happens in that world.
  • It seemed like everyone on my twitter feed was talking about Alyssa Cole’s An Extraordinary Union, so of course I had to grab a copy and see what all the buzz was about. I’m in the middle of it now, and wow, the chatter didn’t lie. Now don’t get me wrong, I love a good Regency, but it’s so refreshing to read a well-written romance not set in early nineteenth-century Britain. And that doesn’t involve a Duke. Cole’s story about an African-American spy posing as a slave for the Union Army, who meets another spy, posing as a Confederate officer, is the perfect antidote. As I write American-set romances, I’m always in the mood for good American historical. It also has an absolutely gorgeous cover.

So that’s a small sampling of what I’m reading these days, and I’ve got lots more queued up, from Molly O’Keefe steaminess, to Sarah MacLean’s new Duchess (I said I love a good Regency, did I not?), to the next Joanna Bourne Spymaster book . . . and then we’ll see where the rest of summer takes me.

What’s on your list? Anything to recommend?

I’m glad to be out of hibernation, friends, and am ready for some basking in the sun. I hope you are, too.

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