#WyrdAndWonder (and Medieval-A-Thon) 2020 Wrap-Up!

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Decorative phoenix © Tanantachai Sirival

 Wyrd & Wonder is a month-long celebration of the fantastic hosted by imyril @ There’s Always Room for One More, Lisa @ Dear Geek Place and Jorie @ Jorie Loves a Story. Get involved here!

It’s the final day of Wyrd & Wonder 2020 (boohoo!) and also the final day of the Medieval-A-Thon, which I haven’t really been keeping track of this month. Oops?

I have loved reading so many reviews and discussion posts for Wyrd & Wonder this month, though, so I’m going to share some of my favourites here, as well as wrap-up my own discussion posts and share what I read.

What I read

I read five of the six novelettes shortlisted for this year’s Hugo Awards – Emergency Skin by N. K. Jemisin; Away with the Wolves by Sarah Gailey; The Archronology of Love by Caroline M. Yoachim; For He Can Creep by Siobhan Carroll; The Blur in the Corner of Your Eye by Sarah Pinsker – and I actually wrapped-up my thoughts on all of them here if you’re interested!

On top that I read five novels, which wasn’t as much as I hoped I might read, but I am very pleased that four of those five are books I was sent for review through NetGalley, so I feel like I’m starting to make a dent in my review copies.

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Firstly I finished up The Scapegracers by Hannah Abigail Clarke, which was originally scheduled to be released in May but has now been pushed back to September so I’ll be posting my review closer to the pub date, and I enjoyed it. I feel like if you enjoyed The Craft but wish it was more queer and feminist, you’ll like this one!

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Next up was Shorefall by Robert Jackson Bennett, the sequel to Foundryside, and unfortunately it ended up being a bit of a disappointing sequel for me. I still liked it, but I already feel like I’ve forgotten a lot of what happened and certain events should have made me more emotional than they ultimately did.

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The one novel that wasn’t a NetGalley read was Royal Assassin by Robin Hobb which, funnily enough, is a sequel I loved a lot more than I expected to and I’m very excited to pick up the third and final book in this trilogy! I have an obsessive personality and I can feel myself becoming more and more invested in the Realm of the Elderlings, so I’m wondering if I might accidentally binge all 16 books this year. I doubt it, considering how chunky they are, but I’m very excited to see more of this world.

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Then I read Love Bites by Ry Herman, an f/f romance between a mortal woman and a vampire set in the ’90s, and it’s another one, like Shorefall, that I feel a bit ‘eh’ about. It’s an easy enough read, which is something I love about the romance genre, but it’s another one I’ll probably forget in a month or so which is a shame when I hoped to love it.

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My most frustrating book of May, though, was The Angel of the Crows by Katherine Addison. It started out as Sherlock Holmes fanfiction, which is fine, but I wish I’d known that because I’m not all that bothered by Sherlock Holmes retellings. I feel like the marketing team have been a bit sneaky and have tried to make this novel sound really different but, if you’re familiar with Sherlock Holmes, I guarantee you’re going to know exactly where this book is going which is a real shame when the parts of it that were original were really original.

Reading all of these means I became an Empress during Medieval-A-Thon, though, so hooray for that!

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Thanks to Emergency Skin I acquired the green outfit I wanted, Love Bites got me a bow and arrow, Royal Assassin got me an axe and, perhaps most importantly, buddy reading The Angel of the Crows with Natalie @ Too Short to Read got me a dog. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, you can find my Medieval-A-Thon TBR here!

What I wrote

Where my centaurs at?

What Lady Trent taught me about internalised misogyny

5 reasons to read Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s Certain Dark Things

We’d call them goblins, Greeks and thieves (a.k.a. My favourite male characters in fantasy)

Should we use fantasy to retell history? (a.k.a. in which Jess is a history grump)

Two cities (and a town) that should appear in more British fantasy

Wotcher? I hardly know her! In defence of the Tonks women

Blog posts I loved

imyril talked about why she loves the Daevabad trilogy

Annemieke talked about the norm of gender constructs in fantasy

WanderingLynn asked: what is the fantasy genre?

Sia celebrated the fantasy books that include unicorns

Louise shared her LGBT+ fantasy recommendations

Brittany considered whether Star Wars is fantasy or sci-fi

Acqua discussed her favourite kinds of magic systems in books

JonBob talked about D&D (and got me hooked on Critical Role)

Jenna shared her thoughts on Kendare Blake’s Three Dark Crowns and convinced me I need to pick it up!

I’ve loved Wyrd & Wonder this year – a big thank you to imyril, Lisa and Jorie for hosting it – and I can’t wait for its return in 2021! Now, I guess the planning for SciFiMonth starts…

What did you get up to in May?

12 thoughts on “#WyrdAndWonder (and Medieval-A-Thon) 2020 Wrap-Up!

  1. acquadimore says:

    That’s too bad about Love Bites, I live for vampire romances and I’m always looking forward to all sapphic ones, but I also find a lot of adult romance novels mostly forgettable, so I don’t really know if I’ll try. I’ll certainly try the Scapegracers later this year.
    And thank you for linking my post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jess @ Jessticulates says:

      I am! I haven’t watched for a couple of weeks (the weather’s been so nice that I’ve mostly been reading outside or listening to podcasts on walks) but I’ve started with the first campaign and it’s really fun. 😀 I’ll have to get back to it this month!

      Liked by 1 person

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