Three Books I'm Reading Now, 2/24/21 Edition
01 Machinehood by S.B. Divya
In her debut novel, Divya offers a society set in 2095. Humanity is reliant on homemade and commercially manufactured pills--for health, for work focus, for managing bots, for healing, for sleep, and for transitioning between all of the above. Using pills is the only way humans can compete with artificial intelligence in the gig economy.
Welga Ramirez is an elite bodyguard, former special forces, and on the verge of retirement. Like everyone, Welga has constant feeds allowing anyone who's interested to see what she's doing. She keeps her virtual tip jar up, and her biggest challenge lately has been shifting her angle or slightly manipulating a situation during her bodyguard jobs in order to maximize tips. Then the unthinkable happens: her team's client is murdered. Violent crimes really don't happen anymore, and society is thrown into a tailspin.
A new terrorist group, The Machinehood, takes responsibility. They're attacking and killing major pill funders, and they threaten more widespread destruction if society doesn't immediately stop using pills as the basis for everyday tasks and as the foundation for the worldwide economy. In the midst of a global panic, Welga is drawn back into intelligence work in order to identify and fight this new enemy--an enemy that may turn out to be a new incarnation of an old nemesis.
This book will be published March 2, 2021. I received a prepublication copy of this book courtesy of Gallery Books and NetGalley.
02 We Begin at the End by Chris Whitaker
Walk is the chief of police in the small coastal California town where he grew up. He made the heartbreaking decision decades earlier to tell the truth and send his best friend Vincent to prison, and now Vincent is about to be released.
Duchess is a thirteen-year-old girl trying to keep her family together. Her mother Star is old friends with Walk and Vincent, and when Vincent reappears, he disrupts the tenuous peace and calm that Duchess and her steady family friend Walk have been able to secure.
Can Walk and Duchess--an unlikely pair on the surface, but both used to disappointment and relying on themselves--somehow prevent Vincent and Star from destroying themselves and everyone and everything around them?
I received a prepublication copy of this book, scheduled for publication March 2, 2021, courtesy of Henry Holt & Co. and NetGalley.
03 The Arctic Fury by Greer Macallister
It's 1853, and longtime California trail guide Virginia Reeve is offered the opportunity to take charge of an unlikely expedition. A benefactor wants her to lead a team of twelve women into the Arctic to locate the missing Franklin Expedition.
Each of the women brings unique skills and strengths to the team, but each also holds secrets of her own.
In timelines alternating between the expedition and the events of a year and a half afterward, Macallister pieces together what really happened to the brave, motley crew of women out on the wild, dangerous ice.
If you like books with wintry settings, you might also like the books on the Greedy Reading List Six Books with Cold, Wintry Settings to Read by the Fire.
What are you reading these days?
This mix is working well for me: science fiction with themes about society's reliance on attention and outside stimulation; a gritty modern-day, small-town mystery with beautifully imperfect characters bringing it all to life; and a woman-powered historical fiction story of an expedition to the coldest of destinations, the Arctic.
Which books are you reading and enjoying these days, bookworms?