It was a bit of a mixed camping experience for me this time. Saturday was bloody cold. About 7C maximum during the day and I spent the day wrapped in as many layers as I could, shivering in my tent. Things picked up after that though and it was even rather pleasant on Monday and Tuesday. We came home a day early because the forecast was for lots of rain on Wednesday and I'm still recovering.
Reading wise, I didn't get a lot done because we were pretty busy getting out and about as much as possible to keep warm. I managed two books and started a third - Summer Knight by Jim Butcher, but I won't finish that now until my next camping trip.
Turnskin by Nicole Kimberling
This has been on the TBR pile since October 2010 when I bought it at Yaoicon. It's a fantasy book set in a world where humans and shifters live alongside each other. Shifters are furry people who can manipulate their bodies to take on any form and as such they are sometimes looked on with suspicion. Our hero, Tom, is half shifter/half human and a playwright. He is accused of murder and so flees from the country to the city where he meets his cousins who run a theatre. There's lots in the story about deception, changing your identity and gender fluidity which I found very interesting. It's also a smashing good story with characters who delighted and amused. Tom is a sweetheart and his innocent earnestness was endearing. I also liked his cousins and the way they brought in the theme of family verses being alone. All in all I enjoyed the book a great deal and would recommend it to those looking for a well written fantasy with strong world building (as is to be expected with this author) and a story which is in turns funny, witty, romantic and very engaging with a core of a serious message about looking below the surface. Grade: Excellent.
The Lady Most Likely by Julia Quinn, Connie Brockway and Eloisa James
Don't faint but, yes, I read a m/f historical. I had it in my pile of books to read after buying it a while ago now. It was a fun, lighthearted story about a horse mad Lord who, after a near death experience, decides he needs to marry and pass on his genes. He asks his sister to draw up a list of eligible ladies and she offers to throw a house party. The story then follows three couples as they find love at the party, each one written by a different author. I thought this was a fun take on the old anthology type books which Avon used to (and still do) produce. The connected story worked well and I enjoyed watching the three couples come together. Really, the whole experience was like slipping into a pair of comfortable slippers, and reminded me why I used to read books like these in droves. One thing that surprised me was how tame the book was, with only one oblique sex scene. I think I've been corrupted :). Overall, though an easy read which took me less than a day to read, with three sets of engaging couples and lots of fun and froth. Grade: Very Good.
And that's it for books. I'm camping again at the end of July and it better be warmer!