An amusing thing happened the other day. I was talking to a friend about the books I’m reading and she stopped me and said, “Wait. You’re reading more than one book at once?”

“Well, yes.”

“How do you DO that?”

Well, I don’t know how I do it, I just do. It’s a gift. Mostly, I only do this when I’m sampling books, which is what I’m doing now. Here are the ones that caught my eye enough to acquire.

Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal (courtesy of Tor)

I’m having a little trouble with this one. I love this author and whenever I hear of her short fiction online, I go and seek it out. I loved “First Flight“. This novel is a homage to Jane Austen, and I think that’s where the problem is. It doesn’t sound like Mary Robinette Kowal, but it doesn’t sound like Jane Austen either. It lacks that Jane Austen sparkle. This may not be the fault of Ms. Kowal; it may simply be that I am too much of a Jane Austen fan to be able to set that aside. This is the third Jane Austen homage I’ve read (one being a trilogy, but I’ll count it as one) and have not loved (so far). If you don’t particularly like Jane Austen, or, say, if you have only read each of her novels once instead of 5 to 10 times plus multiple watchings of multiple adaptations (I have three versions of Emma!), then this novel would probably work for you.

With all that being said, I’m over halfway through and expect to finish this week. Who knows, I may love it by the ending. It’s happened before!

A Curse as Dark as Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce

When I saw that this came out in paperback, I snatched it off the shelf and purchased it. So far, I am only a few chapters into it, but I’m finding it a little slow going. It doesn’t feel much like a YA novel so far, with a young woman having to run her father’s wool mill after his unexpected death. She has to deal with workers and her father’s debt and grasping sellers. I wonder why it was classified as YA. There’s not many YA issues presented here so far.

Scene Stealer by Elise Warner

This is a cute kidnapping mystery featuring a sweet old maid protagonist–a retired schoolteacher. She’s using her harmless-old-lady guise to get places and question suspects. Of course, the police know nothing about this–yet. Should be fun. I’m only a few chapters into it.

Masked, edited by Lou Anders

Still reading the short stories in this anthology. One day soon I’ll give a report on the stories I’ve read so far.

On my nook are the following ebooks, all which looked interesting to me:

Bloodgate Guardian, a fantasy by Joely Sue Burkhart

In Enemy Hands, science fiction by K. S. Augustin

Song of Seduction, a historical romance by Carrie Lofty

Allegra Fairweather, Paranormal Investigator, an urban fantasy (or paranormal) by Janni Nell

The Price of Freedom, a paranormal romance by Jenny Schwartz

Venom, an urban fantasy by Jennifer Estep (advanced ecopy)

Do you read more than one book at once? Do you ever find it confusing? I do sometimes, but usually, I’m reading such different books at the same time that it doesn’t often become an issue.