State of the ARC, November 2019

State of the ARC is a meme hosted by Avalinah’s Books in which we round up our ARCs and attempt to wrangle them into something approaching order. Sometimes it’s like herding cats.


I read one whole ARC in November, Labyrinth of Ice by Buddy Levy, which I was approved for a couple of weeks ago. I have no ARCs due in December or January, which is fine with me. December is always busy, and I will probably read my three February ARCs in January. Or I will find one or two ‘Read Now’ titles and give those a shot. Who knows? I make plans, and then I don’t hold to those plans. Maybe I will read nothing but ARCs in December! Who knows!

woman lying on area rug reading books

I’ll just flip everything upside down for December. It’ll be fine. Photo by Renato Abati on

I will probably not read only ARCs in December. I don’t plan to go that nuts.

Recent Releases:

Whittell crosses centuries and continents to bring us extraordinary stories about snow, a substance many of us take for granted, but which is far more interesting and important than we might expect. Because who doesn’t want to read about snow on a snowy day?



Upcoming Releases:

In 1881, Lieutenant A.W. Greely and twenty-four men set out into the Arctic wilderness on a scientific expedition to study polar weather, sea ice, geography, and to attempt to set the record for being Farthest North. After two consecutive summers passed with their supply ships failing to arrive, the expedition’s supplies ran low. Finally, Greely and his men were forced to leave the relative safety of their base camp and set out on a perilous journey south in search of cached supplies. While awaiting rescue, they faced horrendous weather, privation, starvation, and the ever-present threat of death thanks to the treacherous nature of the Arctic landscape.



Future Releases:

Katherine Keith had always longed for the wide-open spaces far from cities. She spent years wandering across the United States before finally settling in Alaska, where she fell in love, had a child, and built a home far from other people. The daily rhythms of survival brought her meaning, but also brought their own hardships. Long-distance dog sledding help bring Keith’s life into focus, and she decides to run the Iditarod, a race completed in near solitude.

  • The Borgia Confessions by Alyssa Palombo
    Historical Fiction
    Expected publication February 11, 2020, from St. Martin’s Press

In the summer of 1492, Rodrigo Borgia has been elected Pope. He appoints his own son, Cesare, as a bishop, and his younger son Juan is named commander of the Papal Armies. Cesare chafes at his position, as he has dreamed of military glory and Juan proves an ineffective leader. Into the swirl of wealth, politics, and corruption comes a woman from the countryside, Maddalena Moretti, a servant who finds her life becoming more and more entwined with that of the infamous Borgia family.

  • Master of Sorrows (The Silent Gods #1) by Justin T. Call
    Expected publication date February 25, 2020, by Blackstone Publishing

Annev is a student at the Academy of Chaenbalu, a school where a select few are taught to find and retrieve magical artifacts to keep them safe and prevent them from being misused by those unable to resist the allure of dangerous magic. Annev wants to become an Avatar, a warrior-thief capable of breaking into the most heavily guarded fortresses to take the artifacts. But Annev carries a secret heritage of murder and dark magic, and when he is caught between his mentor’s philosophies and that of the masters of Chaenbalu, he must decide what his destiny is and what it could mean for the entire world.

  • A Murderous Relation (Veronica Speedwell #5) by Deanna Raybourn
    Historical Fiction/Mystery
    Expected publication date March 10, 2020, by Berkley Publishing Group

Veronica and her colleague Stoker find themselves embroiled in a potential royal scandal when Lady Wellingtonia Beauclerk asks them to look into the goings-on at one of London’s most exclusive private clubs, the Club de L’Etoile, which counts Prince Albert as one of its regular clients. The proprietress receives a jewel that is easily traced back to the prince, and Veronica and Stoker are asked to retrieve the jewel. But London is embroiled by worse than gossip over a jewel in the summer of 1888, and when a body turns up at the club, Veronica and Stoker must uncover the truth before it’s too late.

  • The Silvered Serpents (The Gilded Wolves #2) by Roshani Chokshi
    Expected publication date September 22, 2020, by Wednesday Books

Severin and his friends have succeeded in thwarting the Fallen House, but the cost was higher than they could have imagined. Now they must pick up the pieces and push forward, for Severin has an agenda he is obsessed with and has set his sights on an artifact that grants its user god-like powers. The search takes them all to wintry Russia, where secrets come to light and force them to face themselves and discover new depths to themselves.


As of today, I have thirty-two approvals from NetGalley, with feedback sent for twenty-seven of them for a feedback ratio of 84%. Because my next reviews aren’t due until February, those statistics will stay about the same until then unless I decide to try some ‘Read Now’ titles before then. I’ve glanced through the selection in my favorite genres, and I haven’t seen much that looks interesting, but you never know. I might find something intriguing that I overlooked before.

Since last month’s State of the ARC, I’ve received two approvals: Labyrinth of Ice by Buddy Levy and A Murderous Relation by Deanna Raybourn. I was excited to see A Murderous Relation appear one day and immediately requested it. The Veronica Speedwell series is my second favorite mystery series, and I was delighted to receive the approval the next day. I may hold off on reading it until 2020, but then again I might not.

There is one title I am waiting to hear back about. I don’t know if I will be approved for it or not, but I am not worried either way. I requested it on a whim, and if I don’t get it, I won’t lose any sleep over it. I know it is coming out, so I can request it from my library once it’s out. Either way, I have plenty of other books to read!

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