Thoughtful Thursday: What’s the best book you read last month?

fantasy and science fiction book reviewsIt’s the first Thursday of the month. You know what that means, ’cause we do this on the first Thursday of every month! Time to report!

What is the best book you read in October 2016 and why did you love it? It doesn’t have to be a newly published book, or even SFF. We just want to share some great reading material. Feel free to post a full review of the book here, or a link to the review on your blog, or just write a few sentences about why you thought it was awesome.

(And don’t forget that we always have plenty more reading recommendations on our Fanlit Faves page and our 5-Star SFF page. And we’ve also got a constantly updating list of new and forthcoming releases.)

As always, one commenter will choose a book from our stacks.

We’ve got a couple of giveaways still current. Find those here!

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KELLY LASITER, with us since July 2008, is a mild-mannered academic administrative assistant by day, but at night she rules over a private empire of tottering bookshelves. Kelly is most fond of fantasy set in a historical setting (a la Jo Graham) or in a setting that echoes a real historical period (a la George RR Martin and Jacqueline Carey). She also enjoys urban fantasy and its close cousin, paranormal romance, though she believes these subgenres’ recent burst in popularity has resulted in an excess of dreck. She is a sucker for pretty prose (she majored in English, after all) and mythological themes.

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  1. Melanie Goldmund /

    The best book I read in October was The Falls, the new Diving Universe novel by Kristine Kathryn Rusch. A murder mystery in a sci fi setting with all kinds of futuristic forensic techniques, it was a fascinating combination of everything I love to read. I can’t wait for the next book, and I’m going to re-read the series in preparation.

    I also liked Chimes at Midnight, the 7th October Daye book by Seanan McGuire.

    I read Crosstalk, by Connie Willis, but I could only give it three stars because it was so “hectic” that it made me feel hectic while reading it, and I had to keep taking a break to calm down. I also didn’t find myself as engaged as I felt while reading Passage.

    And I read Cloudbound, too, by Fran Wilde, but I had the feeling I’d forgotten too much about the first book in the meantime. I’m sure I would rate it more highly if I read them one right after the other.

    It was kind of a mediocre month for me when it came to reading, all in all. I hope November will be better.

    • Thank you for reminding me of the Diving Universe. I’ve had the first book on my to read list for a while but your reminder had me check the library and lo, it is now in my queue for my Kindle!

  2. Far and away The Magician’s Guild was the best thing I read last month-full review available on blog,but suffice it to say,top-quality fantasy!

  3. Paul Connelly /

    I only read Fran Wilde’s Updraft and Except the Queen by Jane Yolen and Midori Snyder. At various points in Updraft I had doubts about it (mainly for the implauibility of the totally weird setting), but by the end I thought it was really pretty good.

    Except the Queen started off a lot better–I liked the two older females as protagonists, and their ignorance of modern human society was quite amusing. But it got overly frenzied at the end (the we-must-have-a-BIG-climax syndrome that urban fantasies can get caught up in). I liked it better when it was in a quieter mode.

  4. RedEyedGhost /

    A Head Full of Ghost by Paul Tremblay – fantastic ending.

  5. October was a decent reading month, other than the two re-reads that were 5 stars (Mirror Dance and The Voice of the Castle) I had one five star:

    One Good Eclair by Maria Schneider – this is a cozy mystery, lots of fun with a really good main character.

    Then I had three four stars:

    Ghosts of Tsavo by Vered Ehsani – I like this because not only is it steampunk with a main that reminds me of Amelia Peabody, I love reading about African myths and legends.

    Snake in the Grass by KA Steward – the latest in the Jesse James Dawson series where he is a ‘champion’ who battles demons to return human souls.

    In Shining Armor by James Elliott – the latest in the Charming series. Anyone who really enjoys Harry Dresden’s snark will enjoy this.

  6. Misti P /

    I think my best book was A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab followed closely by The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. I loved both of them.

  7. Kevin S. /

    To get in the mood for Halloween, I re-read Salem’s Lot. It’s one of the first Stephen King books I ever read and it still gives me chills!!

  8. Sandy Giden /

    The best book I read was Onve Broken Faith by Seanan McGuire. I’d been looking foward to a new October Daye book and it didn’t disappoint me.

  9. Senlin Ascends and Arm of the Sphinx by Josiah Bancroft. A couple of self-published books that are absolutely brilliant. Everyone should give them a shot. As Adam Whitehead said of Senlin Ascends, “It’s quite possibly the most striking debut work of speculative fiction published in the last decade.”

  10. Sandy, if you live in the USA, you win a book of your choice from our stacks.
    Please contact me (Marion) with your choice and a US address. Happy reading!

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