A quick update on what I’m reading while I try to find the energy to review The Gone-Away World.  I’m so glad to be done with it and moving on to quicker reads, which is not to say that I didn’t like it or think it’s great.  It’s a complicated relationship.

These days, I’m skipping through Maggie Stiefvater’s Shiver and so pleased to see that Scholastic has given it a great cover after the slightly embarrassing cover of Lament. (Which reminds me that I still want to read Ballad, the sequel to Lament.  In case you forgot, Lament is the one about fairies that’s kind of like Wicked Lovely, except better and with more snark.)  Shiver is one of those fun, quick books with enough suspense (and werewolves) and romance to keep you hooked.  I’m curious to see where it goes, especially since it’s supposed to be the start of a new series.

In the car, I’m listening to Barbara Kingsolver’s The Lacuna.  Man, I’ve been waiting for a new Kingsolver novel forever.  Okay, since I got my hands on Prodigal Summer back in 2000.  Nine years!  Sure, I loved Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (loved!) but it’s not a NOVEL.  So far, it feels more in the vein of The Poisonwood Bible than, say, Animal Dreams or The Bean Trees or even Prodigal Summer.  It’s got history and scope and does interesting things with the point of view.  And Kingsolver reads the audio book herself, like she’s done with her last few books, and she’s pretty darn good.  I like being able to hear the bits in Spanish and so on.  I’m only on the second CD, and it’s a big book, so we’ll see how it goes from here.  I’m confident that I’m in good hands.

Thinking about my history with Barbara Kingsolver makes me think of other authors who I will read no matter what – the ones I wait for anxiously.  I don’t think that series count, because they’re designed to make you eager for the next installment.  But the authors whose stand-alone books have you pre-ordering a copy before you’ve read a single review, or scouring the internet for signs of  a publication date.  I definitely feel that way about Kingsolver, and Kate Atkinson, in the grown-up novel camp.  For young adult books, I can’t wait to see what M.T. Anderson does next in terms of his big books, and as much as I love the characters in Megan Whalen Turner’s Attolia books, she could write a story about anything and I’d line up to buy it.

Speaking of, I need to schedule my rereading of Turner’s books before A Conspiracy of Kings (squeal!) comes out on March 10th.  But first, Shiver.