Monday, September 30, 2019

Rainbow Awards: Review Wrap-up #1 (bisexual transgender gay poly)

I have been woefully behind in my reading for this year's Rainbow Awards, so over the last 2 weeks I indulged and immersed myself in my assigned submissions. As always, reading for an awards program is something of a mixed bag, but sometimes it is the stories you would not have otherwise picked up that impress you the most.

With my reading half-done (I have until December 5th to get through the rest), I thought I would share my brief thoughts on the books that really impressed me...

Cleaning House (Appalachian Elementals Book 1) by Jeanne G'Fellers

Oh, this was delightful, a modern American queer fantasy about family, spirit, magic, and connections - complete with a wonderful non-binary character and absolutely perfect gender-neutral pronouns.

Dragon Magic by Megan Derr

A slow start, and I was initially perturbed by the conflict between the characters, but once I settled in . . . what a wonderful fantasy, full of action and adventure, and (OMG!) polyamorous romance.

The Complete Lion Mistress Collection by R.A. Steffan

R.A. Steffan does it again with another wonderful story, once again populated by dynamic characters and (very exciting) a reverse harem relationship. It mixes fantasy with romance, but is much darker in tone than the Horse Mistress stories (which I loved so much, I bought the massive paperback omnibus so I can enjoy it again), although that darkness makes it more powerful.

Day of Wrath (Taking Shield #5) by Anna Butler

Coming into a series with the 5th book is always a challenge, especially with high tech space opera, but I still found myself drawn into this almost from the start. So much drama, tension, and mystery, with a covert romance that was actually more intense for being restricted to stolen moments in the shadows.

Waiting on the Rain by Freddy MacKay

This has, without a doubt, been the highlight of the submissions for me (so far). A beautiful story of friendship and family with character as wonderful and as diverse as the Thailand setting. Jira and Bon are such a cute couple, and Areeya and Fon (OMG, I loved Fon!) really bring that relationship to live by intertwining it within their own.

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