The best books to escape a stressful day

The Books I Picked & Why

Monster Hunter International

By Larry Correia

Monster Hunter International

Why this book?

I love Larry’s cheeky sense of humor. Sometimes you just need a book with irredeemable bad guys that you can kill with no moral dilemma. Also, he has strong, sensible women, as opposed to the “spunky” type who do stupid things like pick berries in werewolf-infested woods to prove they’re tough. I admire a woman who can handle a sniper rifle, a family, and run a company. Plus, trailer park elves and gangster gnomes. Makes me smile every time.


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The Goblin Emperor

By Katherine Addison

The Goblin Emperor

Why this book?

Sometimes I’m in the mood for complex world building. The hero has been given a raw deal. He manages to go from rags to riches and not lose his head...literally. He navigates entrenched politics with grace and overcomes his lack of skills with self education. He also builds relationships with all classes of people that earn him the name of bridge maker. He’s an excellent example of blooming where you’re planted.


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Howl's Moving Castle

By Diana Wynne Jones

Howl's Moving Castle

Why this book?

Light-hearted, yet unique, I want to clean the grungy castle with Sophie, smash the Witch of the Waste over the head and walk on the flower fields. The moving castle is so much fun, and it was great solving the riddle of the curse. Watching Sophie grow into her gifts was satisfying, and it made the outspokenness of old age look appealing.


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Magic Bites

By Ilona Andrews

Magic Bites

Why this book?

I like the grit, humor, and slow build of romance. The characters feel real, the world-building is stellar, and I enjoy the genre-bending. It’s definitively not cookie cutter. Shapeshifters and vampires liven things up, but it’s the slow ascension of the main character that drives the plot. Her relationships can be complicated, but the reader is satisfied that the bad guys need a good killing.


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The Grand Sophy

By Georgette Heyer

The Grand Sophy

Why this book?

This is a Regency romance novel published in 1950. She amuses me because her relatives are expecting to host this shy little miss. Instead, she turns out to be confident, brave, and magnificent. She’s traveled extensively with her father and knows generals, grand dames, and is popular with the officers. An excellent horsewoman and a keen wit, Sophie colors inside the lines of her time, but she’s so very vibrant, one can’t help but smile and enjoy the good times.



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