Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
Jacob’s grandfather was kind of an odd guy. When Jacob was a kid, his grandfather would tell him all sorts of stories about the kids in the Welsh children’s home he lived in after escaping pre-war Europe. Then he would show Jacob all sorts of strange photographs (see cover picture of levitating girl) of the other peculiar children he lived with. As Jacob grew older he began to realize that these stories couldn’t have been memories, but were tall tales to entertain an imaginative grandson.
Or were they?
After witnessing his grandfather’s death, Jacob’s parents are convinced that it was so traumatic that he hallucinated the monster-like creature Jacob saw. Jacob is able follow the clues of his grandfather’s last words, and convinces his father to take him to the island where Miss Peregrine’s home for children resides. Instead of answers, Jacob instead finds an abandoned relic from 60 years before. While there he meets someone from his grandfather’s past, and Jacob begins to realize that maybe his grandfather wasn’t completely bonkers after all.Read the rest of this review »
The City Stained Red
There’s something wrong with the world. Don’t you think? There’s so much garbage out there that could just be better. Like more sword fights would be nice. And massive dragonmen with bad tempers. And belly-grown demons that rip their way up through your gullet and out your mouth. And…and…and… ah, who am I kidding? What would a world like that be like? Mass chaos, I tell you. Mass chaos. And I know it all too well. For I have read it, and that world is the brilliance of Sam Sykes.
Interview: Stephen Blackmoore
Stephen Blackmoore is a pulp writer of little to no renown who once thought lighting things on fire was one of the best things a kid could do with his time. Until he discovered that eyebrows don’t grow back very quickly.
He is the author of the urban fantasy novels CITY OF THE LOST, DEAD THINGS and the upcoming BROKEN SOULS. His short stories and poetry have appeared in Plots With Guns, Needle, Spinetingler, Thrilling Detective, Shots, Demolition, Clean Sheets , Flashing In The Gutters and a couple of anthologies with authors far better than he is.
I loved CITY OF THE LOST and just knew I had to get an interview with Stephen for Elitist Book Reviews. This is that interview.Read the rest of this post »
Trial by Fire
Chuck Gannon’s FIRE WITH FIRE was easily the best science fiction novel I read in 2013. The first book in the Tales of the Terran Republic series would be right at home on a shelf amongst the hallowed Golden Age classics. FIRE WITH FIRE is a cerebral thriller – Caine makes his fair share of thrilling escapes – but the real draw to the story is the depth and intellectual complexity that Gannon brings to a First Contact scenario. As a follow-up TRIAL BY FIRE is no disappointment.Read the rest of this review »
Best of 2014
Alrighty. 2014 somehow vanished. It was a wild year for all of us here at EBR, both professionally and personally. We’ll get into some of that down below, and in a separate post. Anywho! The Best of 2014! Yowsa, we had some killer novels this year. As usual, we don’t present the books in any order. And there are gonna be some books here that we haven’t even reviewed yet (again, this year was a bit crazy). And we didn’t even come close to reading everything…so feel free to poke and prod us in the comments about stuff you don’t see on this list!
THE BEST OF 2014
THE THICKET by Joe Lansdale (EBR review)
THE WIDOW’S HOUSE by Daniel Abraham
THE BROKEN EYE by Brent Weeks (EBR review)
SKIN GAME by Jim Butcher (EBR review)
DUST AND LIGHT by Carol Berg (EBR review)
THE RIVER OF SOULS by Robert McCammon (EBR review)
STELES OF THE SKY by Elizabeth Bear (EBR review)
WORDS OF RADIANCE by Brandon Sanderson (EBR review)
PRINCE OF FOOLS by Mark Read the rest of this post »
McKayla’s aunt Avril has always been a little odd. She travels the world as a psychic for the FBI, to the chagrin of McKayla’s mother, who doesn’t like it when she talks magic with her daughters. Now, Avril is visiting Sun Valley in small town Idaho where McKayla and her family live in order to investigate a serial killer who – it appears – possesses her victims. McKayla goes with her aunt during a case to interview the widow of a murder victim. There she discovers that maybe Aunt Avril’s psychic abilities are magic and run in the family because McKayla can feel the window’s emotions–she’s empathic.
But that’s not even the strangest thing, because despite outward tears the widow’s inside emotions are not what McKayla expects a widow to be experiencing: she’s not sad, she’s angry.
Now that it’s all done, I’m going to share a little secret. When it was announced that F. Paul Wilson was going to do a prequel trilogy for his Repairman Jack series, I was super excited. More Jack is always awesome. But I was also a bit nervous. Prequels are tricky. They have a bad habit of diminishing the overall series. Thankfully, all that worry that I kept hidden inside was all rendered pointless. FEAR CITY, the final novel in the Repairman Jack: The Early Years Trilogy, is terrific.
Read the rest of this post »
This one was a while in coming. I picked it up after reading Tobias Buckell’s short story compilation, Nascence, on my own because he was an author that I had often heard good things about but had never taken the opportunity to read, and because the compilation was aimed toward authors in training. The collection worked for about the first two-thirds. The rest was reserved for different iterations of the same story that wasn’t so short and honestly kinda boring. But it was pretty decent up until that point, and I decided to give him another go.
Read the rest of this review »
I originally dismissed RED RISING by Pierce Brown because of the immense level of hype behind the debut. RED RISING was being touted as the next THE HUNGER GAMES, as it seems the majority of Young Adult novels are marketed these days. Being that I consider THE HUNGER GAMES a vastly overrated and underwhelming novel I gave RED RISING a pass. I purchased a copy several months ago on a whim, unwilling to leave the bookstore empty handed. It sat untouched and unloved near the bottom of my To Read Pile until the recent release of GOLDEN SON, book two of the trilogy. News of the sequel drew my attention back to the series and I decided to give it a shot.
I should have jumped aboard the first car of the RED RISING bandwagon when I had a chance. I absolutely devoured Pierce Brown’s debut — reading for hours at a time, even skipping dinner in order to finish the book during a frenzied four-hour reading binge. I’ve read a lot of good books lately nothing on the level of RED RISING in a long, long time.Read the rest of this review »
Into the Wilderness
In 2013’s THE CROSSING (EBR review), Maryam discovered she’d been lied to her entire life. That the Apostles weren’t who they said they were and that the native women taken to the ship were being treated like slaves. Determined to escape the injustices, Maryam makes a plan, and with the help of her newfound friend Joseph they do–with two unexpected companions in tow.
Now, in INTO THE WILDERNESS, Maryam and Joseph cross the sea in search of a new home, but nothing goes according to plan.