Archived posts


The Return of the Discontinued Man

Posted: December 30, 2014 by Writer Dan in Books We Love Tags: Alternate Historical Fantasy, Mark Hodder

Burton and Swinburne, huzzah! Can I tell you how excited I was to read this novel? Ridiculously. These novels have been part of my staple, my core, my life-blood’s source for brilliant storytelling. Each time I return to them, they never fail to impress and entertain me. Hilarity, imagination, and excitement all wrapped up with a neat little bow.Read the rest of this review »


The House of Small Shadows

Posted: December 22, 2014 by Writer Dan in Books We Like Tags: Adam Nevill, Horror

smallhouseMy first introduction to Adam Nevill as a writer was by a guy across the pond named James on his blog Speculative Horizons. His was a book-review blog (now retired) that I really enjoyed reading because we seemed to have similar tastes in books. Somewhere along the way, Orbit UK came along in 2010 and snatched James up as an editorial assistant. He reviewed Apartment 16 by Adam Nevill on his blog shortly before signing off, and although I never picked the book up at the time, James’s positive opinion of Mr. Nevill stuck with me. So much so, that when I recently happened across another of his books, I immediately picked it up and started to read.

THE HOUSE OF SMALL SHADOWS is a strong, slow-building, atmospheric novel that, honestly, took me a while to get into. I’d just come off the soaringly-high buzz of a Mark Hodder book, and the sudden gear shift from fifth to sub-first nearly caused a car wreck, to say the least. However, once I got into the groove of things, my world took a hard left turn into creepy town.Read the rest of this review »



conquestSyl was the first of the alien Illyri to be born on Earth sixteen years ago after their (mostly) peaceful conquest of the planet. Her father is a diplomat living in Edinburgh, where earthlings persist in fighting off their conquerors, despite bringing peace and advanced medicine to Earth. On her sixteenth birthday Syl sneaks out of the castle to explore the streets, an activity fraught with danger as she soon learns when a café explodes before her eyes.

Paul may only be a teenager, but he’s been a part of the Resistance for years, gathering intel, learning to fight, and helping others on missions. He’s old enough now to start leading his own missions, as well as mentoring his younger brother, Steven. After the café explosion, he sees a young woman on the street and takes her to safety, never learning she’s Illyri. He may be part of the Resistance, but the bombing killed civilians, so he knows it wasn’t his people. Unfortunately, his proximity to the bombing causes suspicion.

The chain of events continues from there as a result of that chance meeting. Their lives will never be the same.Read the rest of this review »


The Five

Posted: December 11, 2014 by Steven in Books We Love Tags: Horror, Robert McCammon

I’ve heard a lot about Robert McCammon’s novel, THE FIVE. Mostly, I heard that it was “different”. I finally got around to reading it, and everyone was right. THE FIVE is different. But it was still easily recognizable as a McCammon novel. It was still Horror, though in a different way than we are used to seeing from the author. And it was still awesome.

So yeah. Business as usual for McCammon.
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Beta Reading for Peter Orullian

Posted: December 8, 2014 in Editorial, Elitist University Tags: Peter Orullian

Beta reading is something I’m asked about at least once a week. Either I’m asked to do it, or I’m asked why I do it, or I’m asked how I managed to get the gig in the first place. I’m also frequently asked what I do when I actually sit down to read someone’s manuscript.

Why do I bring this up? Well, because you may have noticed we just published Alan Bahr’s review of Peter Orullian’s novel THE UNREMEMBERED: The Author’s Definitive Edition. The review was extremely positive. If you have been a long time reader of Elitist Book Reviews, you might recall that I personally reviewed the original version of the novel several years ago. Frankly, I didn’t like it at all. It wasn’t that it didn’t show promise, it was that it didn’t feel like the final version. It felt like the draft before cutting a bunch and cleaning up the rest. Again, that review was done in 2011.

So now, ladies and gentlemen, it’s story time.
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Posted: October 31, 2014 in Uncategorized Tags: Books for Chicks, Bridget Zinn, Fantasy, Middle Grade

Kyra wants to kill the princess.

There was even an attempt, but she missed with her poison dart, and now she’s on the run from the king’s soldiers. She wants to finish the job, but the princess has gone into hiding and Kyra needs the rest of the poison potion she made at her old apartment where her former business partners still live.

Did I mention the princess used to be Kyra’s best friend? Read the rest of this post »


The Archived

Posted: October 27, 2014 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Urban Fantasy, Victoria Schwab, Young Adult

When people die their memories and experiences are archived in a special library that few people know about. But sometimes those memories wake up, the restless and violent kind especially, and someone has to return them.

That’s where Mackenzie Bishop comes in.

Four years ago, when Mackenzie was twelve, her grandfather introduced her to the Archive, where the people’s Histories are stored, to learn about the job of a Keeper and take his place. She’s spent the years since his death doing just that, finding Histories assigned to her by the Librarians at the Archive and returning them to their rest.Read the rest of this review »


Honor’s Knight

Posted: October 17, 2014 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Rachel Bach, Science Fiction

honor copyAfter the exciting events from FORTUNE’S PAWN (EBR review), Devi has found herself without a partner and several of her recent memories. It drives her crazy that she can’t remember what happened when Cotter died, or why her fingers sometimes turn black, or why little blue critters appear on the ship that others can’t see. But she’s determined to not let any of that stop her from doing a good job. She doesn’t want to give Caldswell a single excuse to dump her at the next available space station.Read the rest of this review »


Soda Pop Soldier

Posted: October 10, 2014 by Nickolas in Books that are Mediocre Tags: Nick Cole, Science Fiction

As an Advertising/Public Relations major and a lifelong gamer, Nick Cole’s SODA POP SOLDIER immediately appealed to me. The premise of the novel revolves around professional matches being waged online over choice advertising real estate in the real world. Told from the first-person perspective by a character known only by the gamer tag PerfectQuestion, SODA POP SOLDIER is pitched as Call of Duty meets Diablo. The gaming segments of the novel deliver on the action packed promise of the book’s description. Unfortunately the sections of the book that take place in the real world lack the same punch.Read the rest of this review »


Fortune’s Pawn

Posted: October 7, 2014 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Rachel Bach, Science Fiction

Devi Morris is a mercenary and she knows how good she is at her job. Her ambitions mean one day becoming one of the king’s own Devastators, but she must prove herself. She signs up for a year-long stint aboard the Glorious Fool, a trader ship captained by the infamous Caldswell, who attracts bad luck wherever he goes. If Devi can survive the year, then her chances of becoming a Devastator are pretty good. There’s also a pretty good chance she won’t survive.

It doesn’t take long for Devi to notice a few oddities. How little Caldswell sells his shipments for. That a clan of alien xith’cal called a blood feud on him. The strange behavior of his daughter Ren. Also odd are his varied crew, from the xith’cal doctor, the bird-like aeon navigator, and a ship’s cook who is unusually strong.

Working aboard the Glorious Fool turns out to be more than she anticipated, and Devi finds herself in more than one fight with terrible odds. But it turns out it’s not the enemy who will test her resolve…Read the rest of this review »