Friday, 27 November 2015

Which ARC Should I Read Next?

I only joined the book blogging community 6 months ago, so the concept of ARCs is still fairly new to me. I signed up for NetGalley around August of this year, and since then I have reviewed four books for them (1, 2, 3, 4) with incredibly mixed ratings. From my experience I don't think I will be requesting ARCs frequently unless there is a book I desperately want to read, but I am still going to read the copies I have been provided. I've heard a lot about all four of these books but I don't know which to read first and I'm hoping for some suggestions.

Title: All The Light We Cannot See
Author: Anthony Doerr
Buy: Book Depository
Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.
In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge. Add to Goodreads
Why I'm Looking Forward to Reading It: I first came across this book under the Goodreads Choice Awards category for historical fiction in 2014, which it won. Since then I have wanted to read it, but between school books and reading for writing inspiration I haven't had the time.

Title: Demon Road
Author: Derek Landy
Buy: Book Depository
Goodreads Summary: Full of Landy’s trademark wit, action and razor sharp dialogue, DEMON ROAD kicks off with a shocking opener and never lets up the pace in an epic road-trip across the supernatural landscape of America. Killer cars, vampires, undead serial killers: they’re all here. And the demons? Well, that’s where Amber comes in...Sixteen years old, smart and spirited, she’s just a normal American teenager until the lies are torn away and the demons reveal themselves.
Forced to go on the run, she hurtles from one threat to another, revealing a tapestry of terror woven into the very fabric of her life. Her only chance rests with her fellow travellers, who are not at all what they appear to be… Add to Goodreads
Why I'm Looking Forward to Reading It: I have not read Skulduggery Pleasant and considering the target age and length of the series I doubt I will (I hate getting into a long series, especially when all the books have been released - there are more chances for spoilers). But thanks to the book blogging community I decided to give Demon Road a chance. It's been a while since I've read something with a bit of humour and action so I'm looking forward to it.

Title: Armada
Author: Ernet Cline
Buy: Book Depository
Goodreads Summary: It’s just another day of high school for Zack Lightman. He's daydreaming through another boring math class, with just one more month to go until graduation and freedom—if he can make it that long without getting suspended again.
Then he glances out his classroom window and spots the flying saucer.
At first, Zack thinks he’s going crazy.
A minute later, he’s sure of it. Because the UFO he’s staring at is straight out of the videogame he plays every night, a hugely popular online flight simulator called Armada in which gamers just happen to be protecting the earth from alien invaders.
But what Zack’s seeing is all too real. And his skills—as well as those of millions of gamers across the world—are going to be needed to save the earth from what’s about to befall it.
Yet even as he and his new comrades scramble to prepare for the alien onslaught, Zack can’t help thinking of all the science-fiction books, TV shows, and movies he grew up reading and watching, and wonder: Doesn’t something about this scenario seem a little too… familiar?  Add to Goodreads
Why I'm Looking Forward to Reading It: I requested Armada in my early days of NetGalley because I'd heard a lot about Ready Player One and was overwhelmed with the excitement of all the books available to request. Unfortunately I couldn't bring myself to get through RPO. It might have been that I wasn't in the mood to read the book or I just genuinely didn't like it. Whatever the case, I'm now less excited to read Armada and it doesn't help that it has lower ratings than Cline's previous book. I will read it at some point because I feel obligated to, but I'm struggling to find the encouragement to do so.

Title: Slade House
Author: David Mitchell
Buy: Book Depository
Goodreads Summary: Keep your eyes peeled for a small black iron door.Down the road from a working-class British pub, along the brick wall of a narrow alley, if the conditions are exactly right, you’ll find the entrance to Slade House. A stranger will greet you by name and invite you inside. At first, you won’t want to leave. Later, you’ll find that you can’t. Every nine years, the house’s residents—an odd brother and sister—extend a unique invitation to someone who’s different or lonely: a precocious teenager, a recently divorced policeman, a shy college student. But what really goes on inside Slade House? For those who find out, it’s already too late. . . .
Spanning five decades, from the last days of the 1970s to the present, leaping genres, and barrelling toward an astonishing conclusion, this intricately woven novel will pull you into a reality-warping new vision of the haunted house story—as only David Mitchell could imagine it.  Add to Goodreads
Why I'm Looking Forward to Reading It: This book is set in the same world as The Bone Clocks, which I have been reading at a steady pace for a while now. I really like it so far so of course I would want to read Slade House, but my copy was too heavy to bring on holiday and I've lost my reading rhythm. Plus horror is not something I can read all in one go, no matter how big the book is.

For those of you who also request ARCs: If you don't like an ARC after reading half of it, do you still have to read the whole thing? I'm still new to this and I'm interested to know what the guidelines are.

For everyone else: What are your feelings about ARCs? Have you read any of these books? Which one should I read next?

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