Duma Key by Stephen King – My mother-in-law just won’t shut up about this book (love you, Sarah!), so I decided to give it a try on audio. I really liked it! It’s a bit overlong, I feel like King would benefit greatly from an editor, but it’s overall enjoyable. I went into it knowing legitimately nothing about this book other than it has to do with art and I think that’s the best way to experience it, honestly. However, I’m going to give a brief plot synopsis anyway because it’s MY BLOG DAMMIT. Edgar Freemantle owns a super successful construction business in Minnesota. Then he gets in an accident and almost dies. He has brain issues and lost an arm, so he decides to retire… Well, his wife divorces him because he becomes abusive THEN he decides to retire. He moves to Duma Key, Florida and decides to take up painting. He’s super good, almost… SUPERNATURALLY SO!!!! Yeah, this one is about a guy that can paint things into existence which essentially gives him the power to tell the future. It’s a solid read if you have tons of time on your hands. 5/5, 9/10

The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones – I was in a horror mood after listening to good ol’ Steph, so I picked up this book that has been on my radar since release. The story centers around a group of friends who went hunting on sacred ground or land that only the elders could use (I honestly can’t remember, please correct me in the comments) and killed some elk. One of the elk was pregnant. Years later, the friends are slowly killed by some supernatural force. I REALLY don’t want to give away any more of the plot because this is a powerhouse of a horror novel. As we know, horror comes best from the unknown. A friend of mine put it best in that the first part is so good that the next two parts suffer from that success. That’s not to say the second and third parts are bad, far from it. It’s just the first part is so goddamn good and atmospheric and scary. Definitely try this on audio as well, it’s got a great narrator who can really sell the scares. 5/5, 10/10

Recursion by Blake Crouch – I decided to move from horror to sci-fi horror/thriller. It was also my turn to pick for Freking Book Club, so we got some Blake Crouch. This book has two narrators, Barry and Helena. Barry is a cop trying to figure out why a new disease is sweeping through New York. False Memory Disorder gives victims two sets of memories, one real and one false, but both seem to have happened. Those infected tend to die by suicide days after. Helena, a scientist, is working on a chair that will help Alzheimer’s patients recover lost memories. She’s almost out of funding when a mysterious benefactor offers to pay for everything if she works with him. What eventually comes from her research is a way to not only recover memories, but travel back and live through them. I loved this book. The time travel stuff gets a little “huh?” at a few points, but it’s a solid book. However, the question and answer area on Goodreads had some blasphemy occur and I will not let it stand. 5/5, 9/10

No one disparages Dan Brown on MY INTERNET

American Royals by Katharine McGee – This had a really cool premise. What is George Washington decided to become king instead of president? This follows the modern Washington royals and how they deal with being royal in the 21st century. Beatrice, the next in line for the throne, is being forced into a marriage to a fellow royal, Teddy. BUT, she’s in love with her guard, so that’s messy. Even more messy, her sister, Samantha, is in LOVE with Teddy and he’s in love with her! What a compromising situation! Then there is Jefferson who has broken off his long term relationship with Daphne in order to be with Sam’s best friend, Nina. Daphne does not take this lightly and tries to ruin Nina so that she can be princess. That’s her whole motivation. Okay, this was a good book. I really thought it was a fun experiment and it seemed reasonable, I guess? I’m not a historian by any means, but everything tracked to me. I have some quibbles, but it more has to do with the alternate history genre as a whole. I think I’ll write a post about that. 4/5, 7/10