Stuff & Nonsense 053: Holiday Road

I get a lot of galleys. This is nice, obviously. I like books. Especially early, special books. Keep sending them, world.

While putting together my best-of list last week, I was reminded of the stack of advance copies on my nightstand, and figured I'd put together some mini-reviews in case you're looking for new reads in the coming months. Pre-orders often help writers, hint, hint.

This list is not comprehensive at all, and I'm still sifting through books that came out this year, too. But they're the galleys I've read and liked. Most of them, at least. Send me more, I say!

Tangerine, Christine Mangan: The Highsmith comparisons are apt, but also limiting. This book echoes PT very well, but also manages to feel exotic and modern in its own special way. This one was really hard to put down and stuck with me for some time. I predict I'll be revisiting it before too long.

Eden, Andrea Kleine: I loved Kleine's first novel, Calf, and was very happy to get this in the mail recently. I'm not done with it yet, but so far it's everything I'd want from a Kleine book - hints of a dark, jarring past and strong, compelling (and flawed) leads that are supremely interesting. I should really table this until I'm done with my own novel revisions, but I can't.

Holmes Entangled, Gordon McAlpine: I can't say the "last Holmes adventure" is new territory, but McAlpine approaches it from a new direction, and his metafictional approach is both engaging and fun, which isn't totally surprising, coming from the author of Woman with a Blue Pencil. This will be a treat for any Sherlockian, or even the casual fans of Holmes and Watson.

The Oracle Year, Charles Soule: Charles is a great writer, and I've loved his work on a number of comic book series - most recently Marvel's Daredevil and Image's Curse Words. When he announced plans for a prose novel, I was very excited. I know the galley is on the way, which is good news. More as I read it, but definitely keep an eye out for this one...

Sunburn, Laura Lippman: Oh, sweet, sweet Sunburn. It's no mystery that LL is one of my hands-down favorite writers ever. The Tess books are a holy grail to me—with good reason. Lippman knows how to tell a good yarn and her characters are always memorable and relatable. Lippman's most recent novel, Wilde Lake, seemed hard to top, but Sunburn—a tight, sexy firecracker of a noir novel—succeeds, and somehow manages to be my favorite Lippman book ever. So, with that, I join the chorus of people screaming from the rooftops: don't miss this one.

Give Me Your Hand, Megan Abbott: This is another cheat. I haven't read it yet, but I will and it should be on this list. "Cannot wait" doesn't quite cover it for me. So, yes, this also serves as a backhanded way of begging for a galley...

That's all for now!