I do not read urban fantasy by choice these days. I’ve written two UF series, and consequently, reading it is way too much like work. I read it when somebody sends me a book and asks me to blurb it, and that’s pretty much it. I generally enjoy them, but there’s almost always a real hump I have to get over in the first few/several chapters where my brain is going not how I would’ve done it, awkward sentence structure, natternatterpickpickpick. It is, therefore, a surprise when I pick up an urban fantasy novel and am immersed in it immediately and without reservation.
Two such books in a row is unprecedented.
WICKED GAME, by Jeri Smith-Ready is the first of the two I read this weekend which dragged me in without a moment’s hesitation. To be fair, I know I like Jeri’s writing, so I *was* looking forward to reading the book, which is about a con artist who re-brands a failing radio station’s night-time DJs as vampires as a publicity stunt (except the DJs really *are* vampires), but I also really expected that initial “mrrrgh must drag myself through it” that I always get.
Not so. I was sucked in (ahahah vampire novel sucked in get it get it? o.o ok, sorry, I didn’t even mean to type that, and then I thought I was funny, and…ok, I’ll be quiet now…) and went charging through the book with complete delight. This one is really worth picking up. Go forth, pick it up! :)
On the other hand, I didn’t go into NIGHT SHIFT, by Lilith Saintcrow, with any pre-arranged expectation at all, much less an expectation of getting totally caught up in it immediately. I read the prologue while standing in the living room on my way out the door, wondering if I really wanted to bring that book with me to read at the cafe, and by the end of the prologue I was pretty much, “Well, huh, ok, this actually sounds pretty good,” which is about seven chapters earlier than I usually manage to get into an urban fantasy novel. And, in fact, I read it in one sitting at the cafe, long after I’d finished my hot chocolate and muffin, and when I was done I wished it’d been longer, so yeah, a win in both cases. What a pleasant surprise!
Bonus threefer: MALEDICTE, by Lane Robins, is a big fat lush fantasy novel full of lust, betrayal and murder and is the sort of beautifully written wonderful language thing that makes me despair of ever writing anything that cool. So there you go, three books that’ve gotten my thumbs up. :)