Reviews by Writer Dan

Review

Red Sister

Posted: May 24, 2018 by Writer Dan in Books We Love Tags: Fantasy, Mark Lawrence
Red Sister

Mark Lawrence is one of those authors that I’ve been chasing for a while. As in, I’ve been trying to convince my subconscious that I need to read his stuff. Ever since Prince of Thorns came out, I’ve been telling myself, “That looks good. I should pick it up.” But for whatever reason, I never have. Regardless, I’ve always held him in high regard because of Steve’s opinion of not only Mark’s books, but the man himself. I actually bought Prince of Fools about a year ago. Haven’t read it yet. But this year, I just took the leap. Because… well because I knew he’d be a good read and I had some Amazon credit and I just didn’t hesitate when the notion came to me this time. Actually got the sequel to it at the same time. Really looking forward to that read. Until then, we have this one. And it’s a pretty good read indeed.
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Review

American Elsewhere

American Elsewhere

So, we put this book on our “Best of” back in 2013 without posting a review for it. I know. Naughty us. I thought it was about time that we rectify the problem. Plus, it gave me another chance to read a Robert Jackson Bennett book. 🙂 After reading his Divine Cities series, I made a point of putting his name on my go-to list of authors to constantly check in on. Interesting story that’s actually on topic: I was having dinner with a few friends back in February. Brian McClellan (of Powder Mage fame) was part of the group and talking about how he was helping beta read Robert Jackson Bennett’s most recent work in progress. Nearly lost my stuffing. Can you say jealous? Whoa. Anyhow, I found this story on my audio book app, and the rest, as they say, is history.
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Review

Tomorrow’s Kin

Posted: April 26, 2018 by Writer Dan in Books We Don't Like Tags: Nancy Kress, Science Fiction
Tomorrow’s Kin

A while ago, I had a dearth of books sitting on my shelf for which I was foaming at the mouth to read. Several times I walked by the stacks and asked myself which of those various offerings I would dive into next. After several attempts, I just started grabbing books at random, and decided to choose the one that I thought had the best potential based on the first two pages of story. This is usually about all it takes for me to decide whether I’m going to be able to like a book or not. Like there’s a base-minimum amount of goodness that my inner reader is willing to accept, and after about two pages I can just tell. After parsing through a dozen or so of the possibilities, I whittled my choices down to this single book. It was even science fiction, which is always a good thing in my opinion because I feel like I need to read more science fiction. Problem is, I need to read science fiction that’s better than this.
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And we’re back!

Posted: April 17, 2018 in News

Okay, well…kind of. Like we mentioned in our initial announcement, this incarnation of the site is a bare-minimum effort to just get us up and populating with good SEO site-value as soon as possible. Dan is still working on making sure that everything’s working right (social media posting might take a bit…), and we have a METRIC TON of old posts to go back through and update so that everything looks and works beautifully. But the first step has been taken.
Thanks for being patient with Dan while he figured out all the details of the move this last week. He’s ridiculously excited to get into further development, and the rest of us can’t wait to see how everything develops with the new site as well.
As an aside, if any of you have suggestions for Dan’s further development efforts, or if […]Read the rest of this post »

Website Under Construction

Posted: April 10, 2018 in News

And we’re off! Yeah, okay, so this is likely going to take a while. I’m hoping not more than the week, but I don’t do this book-review stuff full time (no one here does) and so it’s going to come as it comes because I only have so much free time and my heart needs its beauty sleep these days.
Once the whole transition to the new site is complete, We will post an official announcement of it. Until that point, you may find yourself at either site version, somewhere in-between, or even at a page that says “This website is insecure!”. Just know that I’m busy getting everything to work out completely, and we won’t need any feedback about stuff that “looks or acts broken” until after that official post. Also, any comments you may try to make could potentially be lost in the […]Read the rest of this post »

New Website Coming

Posted: April 5, 2018 in News

A little while ago, Dan was wandering around on our site and made a horrifying discovery: our site has no SEO value whatsoever. Yeah. Blame the theme developers for this bungle, if you must, but we were the ones that set the dang thing up without realizing that. So…
For those of you unfamiliar with what SEO is, it’s the stuff that happens in the background of a site that makes it show up in Google search results.
Yeah. Not good.
As soon as we figured this out, we were on the lookout for another option. To make a long story short, we decided that the best option for us was so strike out on our own, so to speak.
Dan’s day job is as a web developer. So, he’s put together a new website and we’ll be changing over to that one in the very near future. In all honesty, it’s going to be a bare minimum […]Read the rest of this post »

Review

Altered Carbon

Altered Carbon

As with my previous review, the decision to finally read this novel came as a result of consuming media outside of the book realm. Prior to now, I hadn’t picked this book up because of the complete underwhelming Richard K. Morgan had given me in previous books. Granted, most of his stuff that I’d read was in the fantasy genre. Although I have also read Thirteen, but that didn’t really ruffle my feathers either. Still, the trailer for the series that Netflix recently did just looked AMAZING. Grabbed me and would not let go. And wouldn’t you know it, about that same time the book came up in my audiobook queue at the library as available and I just couldn’t help myself. Turns out, I probably should have listened to myself and/or watched the show instead.
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Review

Iron Gold

Posted: March 22, 2018 by Writer Dan in Books We Love Tags: Pierce Brown, Science Fiction
Iron Gold

I remember picking up Golden Son for the first time and being surprised at where the author started the story. Red Rising had finished in such a way that, given the thousands of other books I’d read, I fully expected Golden Son to be about Battle School. If any other author had written it, that book just might have been about Battle School instead of starting at the end of those two vicious years of Darrow’s training. And that single fact made not only that book, but the entire series, rise up above so many of those others and give a mighty shout that it would be heard. Thus, it was no surprise to me to learn that after writing three solid books about Darrow’s rise to power, that Mr. Brown should choose to begin the next book in his series after ten years of hard-fought war later. Ten. Years. From what I can tell, Pierce Brown is not only asking himself “What is the next story in this world that I could tell?” when he sits down to write the next book, but “What is the most brilliant next story in this world that I could tell?”. And people, when an author does that for their readers — when he goes all out to deliver a knockout punch every single time — THAT is the kind of author that you want to pay attention to. THAT is the kind of author that you want to give you money to. Because THAT author deserves his coveted title. The title of “Favorite Author”.
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Review

Annihilation

Annihilation

I really like the trend I’m seeing of speculative fiction comprising a larger portion of the movies and tv (streaming?) shows in production today. In fact, the whole reason I picked this book up was because someone was making a movie out of it, and the trailer totally pulled me in. Got another book in my stack right now with a review waiting to be posted, that I picked up because of the same kind of media inspiration. Netflix has just been upping the game. If I’m honest with myself, most of the new movie/tv speculative goodness seems to be coming from, or associated with, them. Granted, not everything. But lots of it, yeah? Have you been keeping up on your “Coming Soon” trailers and news buzz? Might just be time that you did that. After you read this, of course. What were you thinking?
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Review

Elysium Fire

Posted: February 15, 2018 by Writer Dan in Books We Love Tags: Alastair Reynolds, Science Fiction
Elysium Fire

Negative boring parts. If you’re not familiar with that term, you should likely go and read my review of THE PREFECT, which was one of those Alastair Reynolds books that I just hadn’t gotten to when the release date for this sequel showed up in my email. I mean, yeah, I could just stop reading anything else altogether and go read all of his stuff that I haven’t been able to yet, and it would be awesome. But then EBR would suffer, and I just can’t justify that. Although, I don’t have to plan on catching up on anything before his next novel comes out. Of course, this means that I’ll remember that fact perfectly well the next time I have a hankering for some science fiction goodness instead of forgetting about it until it’s too late. The reason I won’t have to catch up on anything, is because his next two books are going to be direct follow-ups to REVENGER. But until those are available, there’s lots of currently-available goodness to be had from this author. This novel being a prime example.
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