Thoughtful Thursday: What’s the best book you read last month?

FanLit Readers' Favorites!It’s the first Thursday of the month. You know what that means, ’cause we do this on the first Thursday of every month! Time to report!

What is the best book you read in November 2016 and why did you love it? It doesn’t have to be a newly published book, or even SFF. We just want to share some great reading material. Feel free to post a full review of the book here, or a link to the review on your blog, or just write a few sentences about why you thought it was awesome.

(And don’t forget that we always have plenty more reading recommendations on our Fanlit Faves page and our 5-Star SFF page. And we’ve also got a constantly updating list of new and forthcoming releases.)

As always, one commenter will choose a book from our stacks.

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  1. Von Berry /

    I read Warlord by Sean Golden. A very nice conclusion to his trilogy.

  2. November wasn’t a bad reading month but I had no five star reads. Several four stars though:
    The Immortals Trilogy by Tamora Pierce, I love this world she has created and all the characters are fun and interesting. I listened to the audio version of all three and they were very good.
    Burned by Benedict Jacka, the 7th in this series. A very unexpected ending!
    The Case of the Missing Servant by Tarquin Hall, the first in this mystery series set in India. I love how the reader (or listener, I listened to the audio version which was very good) gets a view of modern life in India.
    The Evil Wizard Smallbone by Delia Sherman, this had a not unexpected twist and was a fun read.
    Revenge of the Mantis by Vered Ehsani, the third in a steampunk paranormal mystery series set in Africa. Funny and fun.

  3. My favorite November reads were an online short story by Theodore Sturgeon, “The Man Who Lost the Sea” (reviewed in Monday’s SFM column) and a long overdue reread of The Sound and the Fury. The best SFF novel I read in November was an ARC of Patricia Briggs’ Silence Fallen (Mercy Thompson #10).

  4. I quite liked Sylvain Neuvel’s Sleeping Giants. I got hooked from the beginning. The “interview & journal entry” style (reminiscent of Max Brooks’ World War Z) was very pleasant to read.

    It may have its flaws, especially around the depth of the characters, but the book was great fun to read (I was also on vacation, which definitely helped :) ).

    I’m looking forward to reading the next installment, which should be published in April 2017.

    • I also really enjoyed this book and the style it was written. It’s one that I’m hesitant to suggest to readers due to the relatively unorthodox way the story is told, but it truly is a wonderful book.

  5. I can’t remember if I read A Close and Common Orbit in October or November. Anyway I think that was the best of both months.

    I also liked a not very well-known young adult book by Caroline Stevermer called River Rats. It’s out of print and no ebook version so I had to drag out my print copy. A group of teenagers travel the Mississippi in a paddlewheel boat. There was a Flash and an epidemic some time before so the world is much reduced. The kids take mail and some supplies around and never take passengers. Unfortunately, they rescue an older man being chased. Their adventuresome life becomes a rollercoaster dealing with the fugitive and the men who are chasing him.

    • River Rats has been on my list for a while – mostly because I haven’t found an inexpensive copy and the library doesn’t have one. I’ll have to have another look to see if I can find one. Thanks!

  6. Sandy Giden /

    I didn’t read much fiction in November. I did read Troll Brdge, the new graphic novel by Neil Gaiman which I enjoyed even though it was pretty short.

  7. M. Robinson /

    The Portable Frederick Douglass
    by Frederick Douglass, intro by John Stauffer and Henry Louis Gates.

  8. Mike Voss /

    Hands down winner was PENRIC’S MISSION by Lois McMaster Bujold. Have probably commented before that she’s one of the few authors I’ll read a new work by without knowing more than title (although this is 3rd in series so title says a bunch, lol!)
    Runner-up would be Larry Correia and Mike Kupari’s ALLIANCE OF SHADOWS, conclusion(?) to their Dead Six series of military thrillers with fantasy undertones. Overtones? Some kinda tone, but these are my gold standard for military-centered thrillers, with or without any supernatural.

  9. RedEyedGhost /

    November was probably the worst reading month I’ve had in years… I’m still working on No One Gets Out Alive by Adam Nevill which I started at the tail end of October. The book is excellent (and I’m nearly done now), I just haven’t had any time to read.

    I guess I did also fit in The Walking Dead Book 13 which was great (especially the ending).

  10. Melanie Goldmund /

    I really liked Goldenhand, by Garth Nix, the latest addition to the Abhorsen series. Dare I hope there will be more?

    Another four-star book for me was The Creeping Shadow, #4 in the Lockwood & Co series, by Jonathan Stroud. These fun and exciting books make me wish I were a teenager in this London so I could buckle on a rapier, grab some salt, and dispatch ghosts, too.

    The Poisoned Blade, by Kate Elliott, is the second in the Court of Fives series, but does not suffer at all from sophomore syndrome. If anything, it’s better than the first one, and that’s saying a lot.

    For anybody who enjoys strong, but definitely not perfect female protagonists in detective stories, check out Amy Stewart’s books Girl Waits With Gun and Lady Cop Makes Trouble. No fantastical elements here, just good old-fashioned adventure — literally. They’re set in 1914, and are apparently based on the forgotten true story of one of the nation’s first female deputy sheriffs.

  11. Nicholas Talty /

    Had an interesting reading month in November. Decided to dive back into Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files and finished books 5-9, which were much better than the first few. Dresden is definitely a fun series to read, though one irksome aspect is the repetition of certain character defining qualities that come out each book, like someone is reading the 9th book without reading any other one, which I suppose is possible, but probably not a large percentage of his readers. Regardless, each book is a bunch of fun.

    The best book I read last month was Blood Mirror by Brent Weeks. Also a fun book, but well developed and, for me, the most plot driven book in the series. Really glad there’s going to be another one.

  12. April, if you live in the USA, you win a book of your choice from our stacks.
    Please contact me (Marion) with your choice and a US address. Happy reading!

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