An Educated Guess: Benjamin Franklin’s Bastard, The Mystery Box, The Other Typist, River of Dust & Icons

An Educated Guess

Since I can’t read ALL THE BOOKS, I have been reading a couple of chapters of evrything (up to 50 pages) to make determinations about what’s worthwhile for me to read in full and what I want to read and possibly recommend for Bloggers Recommend. While a book may surprise later on, an educated guess can usually be made about the books themes, writing style, and overall entertainment/enjoyment factor. Here is a brief rundown of the educated guesses I have on some upcoming books.

Benjamin Franklin’s Bastard by Sally Cabot (May 7, William Morrow) – I love historical fiction pieces, especially when they offer the opportunity to shed light on the real people involved in shaping whatever history is being explored. Benjamin Franklin’s Bastard has all the period details and authenticity in place that make reading historical fiction so satisfying and absorbing. I look forward to Franklin’s unfolding relation with his child and that child’s mother.

Mystery Writers of America Presents The Mystery Box edited by Brad Meltzer (April 30, Grand Central Publishing) – The Mystery Box is a collection mystery stories by some of the best and famous mystery writers today. The anthology includes the talents of Laura Lippman, Katherine Neville, Karin Slaughter, and R.L. Stine to name just a few.  I have read two stories in the collection and am really enjoying the twist. Each story I have read has been set at a pivotal point in the world’s past, which is fun. They range from creepy to contemplative, and each features a mysterious box whose contents are sometime revealed and sometimes not. I definitely recommend reading these.

The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell (May 7, Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam) – By all rights, this book should be a winner this summer. Picking it up is mostly a commitment to read it, as I struggled to let it go and move on to previewing the next book. The Other Typist takes place in old school New York, where women are newly joining the police force – taking down criminal statements and other administrative paperwork. Rindell’s writing will absolutely draw you in, and there is a whiff of obsession and maybe even a brewing unreliable narrator that is deliciously intriguing. I’ll be getting back to this one sooner rather than later!

River of Dust by Virginia Pye (May 14, Unbridled Books) – I wasn’t entirely sure I would like River of Dust when I first stared reading it. It gets right into the action – a child is kidnapped by warriors within its first few pages, but I wasn’t particularly connecting to the parents of that child, a missionary and his fragile wife. As their lives start to unravel, they become more intriguing. The people they were and the reasons they came together in the first place are slowly revealed. I easily made the transition from cautious to intensely absorbed.

Icons by Margaret Stohl (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, May 7) This is an interesting book to pick up because it is one of the few that I have started reading that features teenagers and people who are living in an alien infested world. Earth as we know it has mostly been destroyed or is under alien control. The first few chapters that I read set the stage to find out more about the nature of the aliens and the special children who might be powerful enough to save the world, if they can figure that out and work together. So far it is a bit of a page turner, just because you really want to see more of the story, but those looking for the lush and richer writing found in Beautiful Creatures (the author’s popular collaboration with Kami Garcia) will likely be disappointed.

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11 Responses to “An Educated Guess: Benjamin Franklin’s Bastard, The Mystery Box, The Other Typist, River of Dust & Icons”

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  1. Some good looking choices here! Benjamin Franklin’s Bastard is one I think I would enjoy.

  2. Jennifer says:

    A buffet of books! This is a great idea. I don’t think I could pull it off though ;)

    The Other Typist sounds particularly interesting to me.

  3. Ali says:

    Good strategy. I can’t think of the last time I loved a book that I didn’t love right away in the first 20-30 pages. (I have had books that I loved the beginning of and then they fell apart, though).

    I want to read The Other Typist. My husband’s aunt was one of the first female police officers in her city. She had pretty interesting stories to tell.

    • Nicole Bonia says:

      You will probably love The Other Typist, Ali! Especially having those stories in the back of your head.

      This was a pretty good batch of books. Some that I wasn’t sure of really picked up within the 30-50 page range. I think generally, if you think a book is good within 50, it will be, just as long as it isn’t too long.

  4. I’m looking forward to The Other Typist; I’m finishing up The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer (which is fabulous), and I think I might dive into The Other Typist next.

    • Nicole Bonia says:

      I would have finished The Other Typist but some of the peeps on Twitter are doing a readalong of it in May. I am going to do that You should join!

  5. I totally want to read Benjamin Franklin’s Bastard! Don’t you hate that you can’t read ALL THE BOOKS?

  6. susan says:

    I hear the Other Typist has quite a few twists. hmm could be good! I also picked a few May novels over at http://www.thecuecard.com/ . Cheers

  7. Amused says:

    The Other Typist is a FANTASTIC book! I highly recommend you read the rest, especially if you like mysteries!

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