I hope you’re doing well. Here in this part of the world, the summer is starting to ease towards fall. You can tell because of all the tropical storms. Fortunately, I had French drains installed in my basement last month, so it’s no longer filling up with water. Well, not from rainstorms. Now it’s just flooding from a plumbing leak that multiple visits from my new best friends at the plumbing company can’t seem to fix.
But WHATEVER. Such is life. So far–knock on wood–it hasn’t caused me any major setbacks in my recovery from toxic mold exposure. It hasn’t caused me to get massively better, either, but I’ve been out walking the dogs every day, which is a huge improvement over where I was a year and a half ago, so that’s something.
Anyway, I’ve been pretty busy with lots of things and haven’t gotten much in the way of writing-related stuff done. My only news on that front is that review copies of the audiobook of The City of Shadows are now available. They’re through Authors Direct, which is now available in the UK and EU as well as the US, Canada, and Australia. So if you’re in the US, Canada, Australia, the UK, or the EU, and you’d like a review copy of the audio version of The City of Shadows, respond to this post or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll send you a code!
While I haven’t been doing too much on the writing front, I’ve been doing some interesting reading, watching, and listening. I’ll have some of my recommendations below, but I’d love to hear from you. What have you been reading (or watching or listening) lately that you think needs to be shared? What do fantasy fans need to be checking out?
On my end, I just finished reading Balthazar’s Bane, by Kat Ross. If you’ve been following these posts for a while you know that I’m a fan of Kat Ross, who writes both epic fantasy and gaslamp fantasy in a couple of interrelated series. Balthazar’s Bane is the fifth book in her Gaslamp Gothic series. It’s shorter and faster-paced than some of her more epic works, but still full of rich worldbuilding and well-researched cultural detail.
On the tv-watching, I was enthralled earlier this year by British gardening celebrity Monty Don’s series on Italian gardens, which I watched on Netflix. I’m not a big gardening person, or I wasn’t before I got hooked on Monty Don (all his gardening programs are well worth watching), but this series is such a delightful overview of Italian history, culture, and architecture that if you weren’t a lover of all things Italian prior to watching this show, you will be afterwards.
And then for music I’ve recently discovered the Russian folk-rock group Грай (Grai or Gray). Here’s their song “В обьятиях Мары” (“In the Arms of Mara,” a Slavic pagan goddess of death and rebirth):
I hope you found something there to enjoy! Once again, I’d love to hear you recommendations as well.
Stay safe, and happy reading!