The State of the ARC #1

So, I’m just going to pull the band-aid off and tell it like it is. For me, I have entirely too many ARCs for my liking, but yet I keep acquiring more and not reading them. This MUST cease and desist.

As of this writing, I have 34 unread ARCs on my physical and digital shelves. The majority came from work with no obligation to review. However there are about half-dozen from the publisher, which I need to review or should have reviewed.

The Plan:

I will be participating in The State of the ARC (the list), which is hosted by Avalinah’s Books. I plan to read at least 2 ARCs per month – one will be an upcoming or recent release and the other will be the oldest in the pile.

If I don’t read the oldest by month’s end I will unhaul it.

May State of the ARC

 

Title: Exhalation
Author: Ted Chiang
Release Date: May 7th, 2019
Publisher: Knopf
Genre: Science Fiction

I picked this up from work because it sounded interesting and I’ve been wanting to read some Ted Chiang. 

Summary:

This is signature Ted Chiang, full of revelatory ideas and deeply sympathetic characters. In this fantastical and elegant collection, Chiang wrestles with the oldest questions on earth—What is the nature of the universe? What does it mean to be human?—and ones that no one else has even imagined. And, each in its own way, the stories prove that complex and thoughtful science fiction can rise to new heights of beauty, meaning, and compassion.

 

Title: The Farm
Author: Joanne Ramos
Release Date: May 7th, 2019
Publisher: Random House
Genre: Women’s Fiction

I contemplated for weeks on whether or not to grab this from the pile of ARCs at work and when I decided to give it a go someone else had snagged it. Thankfully they brought it back after reading it and had some glowing reviews. So, yeah, I shoved that bad boy into my backpack with a quickness. 

Summary (from Random House):

Nestled in New York’s Hudson Valley is a luxury retreat boasting every amenity: organic meals, personal fitness trainers, daily massages—and all of it for free. In fact, you’re paid big money to stay here—more than you’ve ever dreamed of. The catch? For nine months, you cannot leave the grounds, your movements are monitored, and you are cut off from your former life while you dedicate yourself to the task of producing the perfect baby. For someone else.

Jane, an immigrant from the Philippines, is in desperate search of a better future when she commits to being a “Host” at Golden Oaks—or the Farm, as residents call it. But now pregnant, fragile, consumed with worry for her family, Jane is determined to reconnect with her life outside. Yet she cannot leave the Farm or she will lose the life-changing fee she’ll receive on the delivery of her child.

 

Title: The Kingdom
Author: Jess Rothenberg
Release Date: May 28th, 2019
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co.
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

I’ve seen this on social media a lot and when it came into work I fell in love with the cover. 

For some reason when looking at the cover I got a Mulan vibe and the summary made me think of Isaac Asimov’s I, Robot. 

Summary:

Glimmering like a jewel behind its gateway, The Kingdom(TM) is an immersive fantasy theme park where guests soar on virtual dragons, castles loom like giants, and bioengineered species–formerly extinct–roam free.

Ana is one of seven Fantasists, beautiful “princesses” engineered to make dreams come true. When she meets park employee Owen, Ana begins to experience emotions beyond her programming including, for the first time… love.

But the fairytale becomes a nightmare when Ana is accused of murdering Owen, igniting the trial of the century. Through courtroom testimony, interviews, and Ana’s memories of Owen, emerges a tale of love, lies, and cruelty–and what it truly means to be human.

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