The Thirteen Hallows by Michael Scott & Colette Freedman
Pemberley Ranch by Jack Caldwell
American Vampire #34 by Scott Snyder
For Whom the Belle Tolls by juju0268
And Again by Bad_Faery
So Many Ways to Reproduce edited by Caroline Fortin
The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown
Inked Magic by Jory Strong
Vampire Mistress by Joey W. Hill
The Walking Dead #17: Something to Fear by Robert Kirkman
Krampus the Yule Lord by Brom
Darcy and Fitzwilliam by Karen V. Wasylowski
Beauty Queens by Libba Bray
Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
Brave by PhoenixTalon
Strangely Alarming, The First Bite, A Flicker of Light, A Little Taste, and Caramel and Berries by Sapsorrow86
There were definitely a few standout stories this month, either for being absolutely a waste of my very precious time, or being wonderful, thoughtful/heart-wrenching, etc. pieces of writing that I'll enjoy going back to in years to come.
Why is Beautiful Creatures so popular? I suppose it hits it's target market of misunderstood teenage girls perfectly--and yes, I was buying into the hocus pocus up until a point too--but then that god awful ending? How could anyone get passed it and continue the series? It was such a cop out. And unfortunately I had been excited about the movie, as the previews look pretty good, but now I doubt I'll go see it.
Beauty Queens by Libba Bray (picked up after reading a review) however is worth everyone's time. Talking about this in front of a man I had felt the need to add the quantifier "This isn't about man-hating", perhaps because of how I've been conditioned through society/media/environment to consider how others may interpret my opinions; it's about analyzing why women think the way we do, why approval/appearance/acceptance is so damn important, why being a "good girl" really means keeping your mouth shut. It's a wonderfully hilarious, scary novel about many things actually, and I loved it and I hope you read it as well. Even if just for the commercial breaks :)
The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown is another brilliant book that mirrored my own family situation and experiences with cancer to an absurd degree. Here's it's a mother with breast cancer and her three grown daughters coming home under clouds of self-disgust and hopelessness that have little to do with wanting to be there for their parents and more with their own fucked up lives. My mother and one sister have also read this, and while they say they saw little of us in these women, I saw so much it brought tears to my eyes.
Inked Magic and Vampire Mistress were terrible books, just terrible. Rape isn't sexy. Why do so many erotica/romance authors use it in the hurt/comfort trope? There are many more things to comfort someone over that would lead to plausible sexytimez, but as far as I'm concerned rape isn't one of them. And I don't care if it's part of a sub-plot that doesn't automatically affect the principal characters either. Not sexy. I had purchased the sequel to Vampire Mistress at the same time and simply tossed it my TO GO pile. Not worth the time or money.
Michael Scott is better known for his young adult series about immortal Nicholas Flamel, but The Thirteen Hallows was completely adult and completely terrifying. Fans of both fantasy and thrillers would enjoy this one, especially if Celtic legends are your cup o' tea.