Archived posts

Review

The Immortal Throne

Posted: December 22, 2016 by Alan in Books We Love Meta: Stella Gemmell, Dark Fantasy
The Immortal Throne

Stella Gemmell returns with the paraquel-sequel(?) to THE CITY with THE IMMORTAL THRONE. (I had to Google “paraquel” to find out that the term I wanted was paraquel.)

I quite loved THE CITY, even though it’s darker than my normal fare, and I admit I waxed poetic about it. Well, I’m here to wax poetic a second time. THE IMMORTAL THRONE is a worthy successor/precursor(?) to THE CITY even if the timeline of the plot is a little weird.
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Review

Confluence

Posted: December 20, 2016 by Vanessa in Books We Like Meta: S.K. Dunstall, Space Opera
Confluence

Here we are on book three of S.K. Dunstall’s Linesman series, CONFLUENCE. Our friends seem to be barely hanging on because now the Emperor of Lancia, Michelle’s father, has decided to assert his influence in the New Alliance, which includes marrying her off for political gain. Emperor Yu also wants his cousin, Ean’s trusty bodyguard Dominique Radko, to marry to one of Yu’s trusted (and nefarious) advisors–to Ean’s dismay. But Michelle and gang are crafty and begin their own maneuverings in order to maintain as much control of events as they can.

Unfortunately, the humans aren’t taking the sentient alien ships into account. The ships want a crew now, whether the New Alliance factions are ready to supply crews and linesmen or not. And that may mean the ships start choosing crew without input from the humans.

It feels like everything is on the verge of blowing up.
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Review

Red Right Hand

Posted: December 15, 2016 by Writer Dan in Books We Like Meta: Levi Black, Urban Fantasy, Horror, Levi Black
Red Right Hand

For the last few weeks I’ve been binge listening to the new Metallica album after finishing my last audio book. In amongst the new brilliance from this, one of my favorite bands, is a song called Dream No More that’s all about Cthulhu awakening from the deeps in which he resides. So, when I got this next book in the mail and checked out the Acknowledgements page that included a shout out to Lovecraft and the necessity of his Mythos to this book, it felt like I was already on board, strapped into my seat, and yanking on the whistle chain. Just couldn’t wait to grab it and go, go, go.
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Review

Ursula K. Le Guin Short Fiction

Posted: December 13, 2016 by Vanessa in Books We Love Meta: Ursula K. Le Guin, , Short Fiction
Ursula K. Le Guin Short Fiction

These two books are beautiful. Combined, they’re over 1500 pages of short fiction by the talented Ursula K. Le Guin. I admit up front I haven’t finished them both, it’s just too much to try to get done during this holiday season (because, let’s be honest, Le Guin should be savored), but I had to let you know about them in case you’re looking for a great gift for your SF-loving friends.

THE UNREAL AND THE REAL is a collection of “best of” short stories selected by the author, old and current. THE FOUND AND THE LOST is a collection of all of Le Guin’s novellas.
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Review

Belle Chasse

Posted: December 8, 2016 by Vanessa in Books We Like Meta: Suzanne Johnson, Urban Fantasy
Belle Chasse

I’m not sure if DJ can handle much more of this. I’m not sure I can handle much more of this. Seriously this woman needs to get her life back in order. Too bad it’s her sense of loyalty to her friends that her boss can’t seem to appreciate. Fortunately, she’s chosen well in her friends, because they may be all she has between her and those trying to kill her.

DJ has found herself on the run after the events of PIRATE’S ALLEY, her own wizard First Elder has determined her a criminal for simply wanting to protect her best friend, Eugeine. Fortunately her friend, the undead pirate Jean Lafitte, is harboring the fugitive and Eugeine at his home in Old Barataria. The result is a lot of sneaking around if DJ wants to figure out how to solve her current problem.
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Review

Too Like the Lightning

Posted: December 6, 2016 by Shawn in Books We Like Meta: Ada Palmer, Science Fiction
Too Like the Lightning

You know, I’ve read quite a bit of Science Fiction in my time. I’ve read near-future thrillers, and I’ve read far-future alien stories. I’ve read first contact stories, and stuff that feels more like it’s at home in Fantasy than Sci-fi. I’ve read big, fat hard science fiction stories and I’ve read quick, lite page turner actioners. I’ve gone back and read almost all of the Hugo award-winning novels and I’ve read all of the Hugo nominees of the past 10 years, as well. So when I say I’ve read a lot of Science Fiction, I really mean it.  And yet in all of that, I’ve never read a novel quite like TOO LIKE THE LIGHTNING by Ada Palmer.
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Review

Battlefield Earth

Battlefield Earth

I’ve been hearing about this book for a long time from a few friends of mine, and so it has been on my TBR list for a while now, but I have to admit it wasn’t ranked very high. And then, lo and behold, I get notification that they’ve made an audio book out of the thing and I’m getting a free copy in the mail for my listening pleasure as long as I’ll post an honest review of it afterward and then pass the copy on to my local library. As my father always says, “Such a deal!” Once I got the thing though, I found I was in for a bit more than I’d expected, for the copy of the audiobook I received was 44 CDs long. Guess I hadn’t realized just how long the book was (despite the fact that I have a paperback copy sitting on my shelves at home). And the recording wasn’t just an “audio book”. It’s “dramatized”, which I haven’t seen a lot of in the past. The recording included the talent of 65 voice actors performing almost 200 individual characters and included more than 150,000 different sound effects. Pretty impressive, eh?
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Review

Seriously Shifted

Posted: November 29, 2016 by Vanessa in Books We Like Meta: Tina Connolly, Fantasy, Young Adult
Seriously Shifted

Not long ago Cam rescued potential-boyfriend Devon from being possessed by a demon, saved the town from a phoenix resurrected by her witch mother Sarmine, and was still able to pass Algebra. Such is the life of a teenage witch.

It seems that trouble continues to find her, because now her mom’s old college buddies have descended on the hapless town and decided to make a bet that involves making Cam’s friends miserable–her job is to thwart them.
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Review

The Blood Mirror

Posted: November 23, 2016 by Vanessa in Books We Love Meta: Brent Weeks, Epic Fantasy
The Blood Mirror

As with previous posts about Brent Weeks’ Lightbringer series, I’m going to tell you again that you can’t start in the middle of the series without being lost, nor would you want to, it’s a great series, go to book one and start there…yadda yadda yadda. Or else here be spoilers.

Ok, now that’s out of the way. Let’s get to the good stuff.

I don’t know how Weeks consistently ratchets up the tension, weirdness, and worldbuilding with each novel, but here we are at book number four, THE BLOOD MIRROR, and you shouldn’t be surprised by this point that it’s yet another big book of epic fantasy goodness.
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Review

The Doll Collection

Posted: November 17, 2016 by Writer Dan in Books We Like Meta: Ellen Datlow (Ed), Horror, Short Fiction
The Doll Collection

Dolls can be creepy. We’ve been telling horror stories about dolls for ages. Usually, it’s only through the darkened glass of adulthood though that these constructions of plastic, wood, cloth, and porcelain become anything more than the facimilies of infantile life they represent. That’s why evil dolls and the innocent youngsters that tote them around so often find themselves brought together. Occasionally though, a story, or a doll, comes along that lacks these boundaries. Just ask my toddler-aged niece about the sunken-eyed “Scary Doll” that haunts the hallways of my own house. These are the kinds of stories that I expected going into this collection, based solely on the very creepy front cover of the book. And there were definitely some of those that I found within.
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