Whenever you start a new job, you’re going to be busy and stressed for at least the first week. Reading can be a great hobby in the evenings to help you relax, but finding the time? Yeah, that can be a bit of a pain.
I should be starting my next job next week – still waiting on a start date as I write this – and I’m so excited to do so. But with all the stress of learning new processes and meeting new people, I wanted to be kind with my reading choices.
So I’ve made a whole new TBR for the first few weeks of the job, and today I want to share it with you in case my blog posts slow down for a little bit. These are mostly books I’ve chosen to read, but I’ve also picked a couple from my jar just to get some variety. I just let myself put the book back if I pulled a thick one, ha!
Kith and Kin by Marike Nijkamp
This is the first of the Critical Role novels out there. There’s a second one coming out in November by a different author, and I’m very excited. I’ve read Nijkamp before and really enjoyed her writing. I’m also totally obsessed with Critical Role and have been slowly making my way through Campaign 1.
I was going to wait until I finished the campaign to read this, but since I’ve been so desperate to get to it…yeah, now is the time, for sure.
This book follows the twins, Vex and Vax before they joined Vox Machina.
Since leaving their father, they’ve been travelling around learning who they are and earning money. They expect more of the same when they reach the city of Westruun but run into something a lot more deadly. There they meet the criminal syndicate The Clasp, and as they try to get themselves out of that situation, they find themselves on opposite sides.
Neither Vex nor Vax is my favourite campaign 1 character, but I’m so excited to read this. From the summary, I’m wondering if we’ll find out why the Clasp once wanted Vex dead and exactly what Vax did to save her.
Claimed by The Orc Prince by Lionel Hart
So this indie fantasy romance novel is technically Critical Role adjacent for me. Basically, I love the covers of these books, and that’s how I found them. The cover illustrator is in a server I’m in for Critical Role fans, so when I was checking out her Instagram, I saw the covers on there. I checked out the book plots and was curious enough to actually buy the first volume.
Now, this is a really small book, but it does have light A/B/O elements which…not something I’ve ever read before. And I don’t really plan on reading more of it. But since this is a book I would have happily picked up if I didn’t know about those, I thought I’d still give it a go. Support an indie author, y’know?
Taegan is an elven prince, Zorvut is the son of an Orc warlord, and the first words they speak to each other are their wedding vows. Both have prejudices against the other, as all their people do, but Taegan soon finds that Zorvut is intelligent and thoughtful. And he winds up falling in love. What started off political becomes genuine, and everything seems like it should be fine. Unfortunately, their peoples aren’t so quick to forgive and forget, and when a dark secret comes to light, Taegan has to decide if his feelings for Zorvut are worth fighting for.
This book sounds like it could be so cute, and it’s so small. It should be an easy read for me to dive into one night, and I’m excited.
Defy The Night by Brigid Kemmerer
The final fantasy book on my TBR is one I pulled from my jar. It’s also the only YA Fairyloot book that I own and haven’t read yet. I got it last year. Welp. I do want to read it, so I’m glad that it’s finally made its way onto my TBR. It is a little thicker than most of the books on here, but it’s also kind-of short height-wise, so I hope that helps.
I know this is likely going to be a pretty typical YA fantasy, but I find Kemmerer to be very hit or miss. I’ve read the first book in her elemental brothers series and have never carried it on. I adored A Curse So Dark and Lonely, then haven’t been able to get into book two at all. So I’m hoping this will break my first-book-only exception with her.
In this book, sickness has been ravaging the land. The only known cure is an elixir made with Moonflower petals, and that cure is limited. Sick of seeing her neighbours suffering, apothecary apprentice Tessa has been secretly making and distributing the elixir at night. But when rumours spread that the cure doesn’t work and the King’s Justice does something cruel, Tessa is desperate enough to break into the castle in the hope of saving the country.
This could be a lot of fun, but it could also just be okay. I’m glad to finally be getting to it, and I hope I love it.
Tokyo Dreaming by Emiko Jean
I read Tokyo Ever After earlier this year, and I absolutely adored it. I’ve been watching a lot of YouTubers living in Japan recently, and I’m at that stage again where I’m desperate to go there. Money and Covid restrictions say no to that currently, so reading something set there will have to do instead. The first book was such a fun YA contemporary, and I have high hopes for this one too.
In Tokyo Dreaming, Izumi has finally found somewhere she belongs. She’s settling into her new life as a princess, she has a great boyfriend and a dog too. Life seems perfect until her boyfriend makes a decision about their relationship that shocks her. On top of that, her parents rekindled romance has stalled out, and the royal wedding may be in jeopardy. With all this going on, Izumi is desperate to get her life on track, and she’ll do what she can to fix it.
This series is very similar in vibes to the Princess Diaries but for a new generation. I had so much fun with the first book, and I’m certain that I’ll love this one just as much.
A Rip Through Time by Kelley Armstrong
I’ve gotta finish with the new book by a favourite author. I’m pretty sure you all know that I adore Kelley Armstrong by now, and I always preorder her books. I was obviously going to get to this one as soon as I could. It’s not quite my typical read. It has time travel elements as well as her usual crime/thriller ones, so I’m not quite sure how I’ll feel. But I’m still excited.
I actually studied Victorian policing during my GCSE history class as part of learning about Jack the Ripper, so I’m slightly nervous. If anything seems too inaccurate, even with a modern detective trying to help things along, I’ll probably be annoyed and wind up DNFing. But I have faith in Armstrong. I’m sure this is going to be another series by her that I really get into. And then I might check out her other time travel series that I have yet to get to…
The summary for this one says that Homicide detective Mallory is in Edinburgh to be with her dying grandmother. When out on a run one day, she hears a woman crying out in an alley and goes to help. When she gets there she blacks out…and wakes up in the body of a housemaid who should have died back in 1869. Mallory will have to get used to her new life as Catriona, the servant of Dr Gray, the undertaker. Soon she discovers he’s also the local M.E, and when he takes on the case of a young man who was strangled similarly to both Mallory and Catriona, Mallory hopes to catch him. As maybe by stopping him, she can return to her modern life.
It definitely sounds like it could be a lot of fun, and I’m hoping that it feels historically accurate. Armstrong writes a great thriller novel, so I really do have everything crossed.