Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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Top ten books for people who enjoy ….

Here’s a nice post from Maureen at By Singing Light: Novels you might enjoy if you love poetry. I love this list! I must read everything on it.

Interestingly, the only one of these I actually have read is the McKillip — almost any one of hers would belong on this list. The Bell at Sealey Head. Ombria in Shadow. But it’s true Alphabet of Thorn is a particularly apt choice.

Many of the others on this list are on my TBR list — or my wishlist — or at least they’re on my *radar*. I particularly want to read The Girls at the Kingfisher Club.

Another title I think is perfect for those who love poetry: Sarah Addison Allen’s The Peach Keeper. Or any of her other titles.

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Meanwhile, Brandy at Random Musings is offering a Top Ten list for people who enjoy love stories. I see that she’s picking non-romances with great love stories.

I would never have thought of Willis’ Bellwether . I don’t remember the romance at all from that one. I guess I was focused on other aspects of the story? Now I’m curious and kind of want to re-read it.

Another one I think of under the category of great-love-story-not-a-romance: The Lions of Al-Rassan by Guy Gavriel Kay. Come to think of it, Kay is pretty much perfect for the prior category, too: readers who enjoy poetry should certainly try his work, especially (I would say) Under Heaven.

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Related in theme, Chacic has a top ten list of romances — specifically, contemporary romances. I’m not likely to ever read all that many contemporary romances . . . proportionately, anyway . . . but I do find them useful because they’re easy to slip into without losing track of my own WIP and they’re easy to pick up and put down.

Well, except for Laura Florand’s romances. Chase Me nearly made me late to work.

The single contemporary romance I would honestly most like to try but haven’t yet gotten to is Truly by Ruthie Knox. Chachic recommended it — food is important, always a significant plus for me — the male lead is an ex-chef. Well, I do have it on my Kindle, so maybe I will read it soon.

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Here’s another subgenre I enjoy but dip into only occasionally: Katherine at I Wished I Lived in a Library offers a Top Ten list of cozy mysteries. Actually this subgenre kinda-sorta ties into the food-is-important theme, because there are times I think you can almost define “cozy mystery” as “a mystery with recipes in the back” — of course that’s not really true, but it is not uncommon and I always enjoy this when I see it.

Two of these suggested cozies meet that particular definition: the Read’em and Eat’em mystery series by Moran and the Orchard series by Connolly, which sounds like it’d be especially helpful when the apples start really rolling in this fall. I have to check those out.

Not exactly a cozy mystery, but Sarah Addison’s Allen The Girl Who Chased the Moon also offered many cake recipes at the back. I believe some of Patrice Greenwoods’s cozy-ish mysteries do, too. They certainly make you long for high tea.

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Here’s a list that’s not quite as specific as it seems at first glance: Rory at Forth Street Reviews suggests Ten Books for the Botany Lover. These include, among titles that are more centered on normal plants and normal botany, Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer (!) which I admit I am not likely to ever try because it sounds too creepy for me; and The Martian (!!) — well, you have to admit, botany did happen in that one.

One book not included on this list, that really really should be, is Henry Mitchell’s on Gardening, a collection of his gardening columns, which are probably the wittiest and most charming gardening essays ever written by anybody. Honestly, I don’t think anybody else ever made me buy more plants.

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7 Comments Top ten books for people who enjoy ….

  1. SarahZ

    I didn’t think Bellwether was particularly romantic either, but that wasn’t really my favorite book in any case.

    Loved the Kingfisher Club book, though. It’s a great fairy tale adaptation.

  2. Evelyn Alexie

    I don’t read many contemporary romances, but I do agree with Chachic’s inclusion of ‘Act like it’ by Lucy Parker. That was one of those stories where the author’s voice grabs you on the first page and doesn’t let go. Plus, it was funny.

  3. Rachel

    Everyone seems to love The Girls at the Kingfisher Club. I mean, if they enjoy fairy tale retellings. It’s definitely one I keep moving up the top of my TBR pile. Unfortunately more recent releases keep shuffling in on top of it …

    Yes, To Say Nothing of the Dog strikes me as a more obvious choice.

    Acting and theaters and actors aren’t always plot elements that appeal to me, but still, I’ll have to try Act Like It.

  4. Rachel

    Jo, you are so right! I didn’t like Chime as much as I think it deserved — I don’t think I was in the mood, somehow — but the language was beautiful. I should re-read it.

  5. Brandy

    I agree with everyone that To Say Nothing of the Dog is the more obvious choice. But I love nerdy Ben and focused Sandra and how clueless they both are. Their relationship develops out of a mutual respect, love of snark, and the love of what they are both passionate about. It spills into how they feel for each other. For me that romance works so well BECAUSE it’s an afterthought. Their first kiss makes me smile so much for this very reason.

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