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Archive for the tag “fantasy”

#TuesdayBookBlog – The Way of Shadows by Brent Weeks @BrentWeeks

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars for EACH Book!
Pure Enjoyment!

I’m sorry to admit this, but I’m so pressed for time this week, it was either no review at all today, or a very, very short one. I opted for short: Read this trilogy.

For those who might require more depth to their reviews, I’ll add this: If you love well-written fantasy, with strong characters, intricate plotting, friendship that knows no bounds, painful and heartbreaking sacrifice, and really, really weird names: READ THIS TRILOGY!

And to back up my suggestion, here are the blurbs and links for each of  the three Night Angel books. (I’m serious. Read. This. Trilogy.)

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5 of 5 Stars

For Durzo Blint, assassination is an art-and he is the city’s most accomplished artist.

For Azoth, survival is precarious. Something you never take for granted. As a guild rat, he’s grown up in the slums, and learned to judge people quickly – and to take risks. Risks like apprenticing himself to Durzo Blint.

But to be accepted, Azoth must turn his back on his old life and embrace a new identity and name. As Kylar Stern, he must learn to navigate the assassins’ world of dangerous politics and strange magics – and cultivate a flair for death.

Way of Shadows

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5 of 5 Stars

Kylar Stern has rejected the assassin’s life. The Godking’s successful coup has left Kylar’s master, Durzo, and his best friend, Logan, dead. He is starting over: new city, new friends, and new profession.

But when he learns that Logan might actually be alive and in hiding, Kylar is faced with an agonizing choice: will he give up the way of shadows forever and live in peace with his new family, or will he risk everything by taking on the ultimate hit?

Shadow’s Edge

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5 of 5 Stars

Logan Gyre is king of Cenaria, a country under siege, with a threadbare army and little hope. He has one chance – a desperate gamble, but one that could destroy his kingdom.

In the north, the new Godking has a plan. If it comes to fruition, no one will have the power to stop him.

Kylar Stern has no choice. To save his friends-and perhaps his enemies-he must accomplish the impossible: assassinate a goddess.

Beyond the Shadows is the action-packed conclusion to the Night Angel Trilogy.

 

 

 

#TuesdayBookBlog Among Thieves & Sworn in Steel by Douglas Hulick @DougHulick

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars for Each

Among Thieves Blurb:

Drothe has been a member of the Kin for years, rubbing elbows with thieves and murderers in the employ of a crime lord, while smuggling relics on the side. But when an ancient book falls into his hands, Drothe finds himself in a possession of a relic capable of bringing down emperors–a relic everyone in the underworld would kill to obtain.

Sworn in Steel Blurb:

It’s been three months since Drothe killed a legend, burned down a portion of the imperial capital, and found himself unexpectedly elevated into the ranks of the criminal elite. As the newest Gray Prince in the underworld, he’s not only gained friends, but also rivals—and some of them aren’t bothered by his newfound title. A prince’s blood, as the saying goes, flows just as red as a beggar’s.

So when another Gray Prince is murdered and all signs point to Drothe as the hand behind the knife, he knows it’s his blood that’s in danger of being spilled. As former allies turn their backs and dark rumors begin to circulate, Drothe is approached by a man who says he can make everything right again. All he wants in exchange is a single favor.

Now Drothe finds himself traveling to the Despotate of Djan, the empire’s long-standing enemy, to search for the friend he betrayed—and the only person who can get him out of this mess. But the grains of sand are running out fast, and even if Drothe can find his friend, he may not be able to persuade him to help in time…

~~~

I’ve never made any secret of how much I love beautiful book covers. I own an overabundance of print books, filling floor-to-ceiling bookshelves in my library, even though these days, I read almost exclusively on my Kindle. (Old eyes, adjustable fonts, ’nuff said.) Bearing my nearly OCD Cover-Love in mind, it might not surprise you that the cover of Among Thieves pulled me right in, but trust me–the story inside did not disappoint. In fact, it was so engaging, I downloaded and read Book 2 of the series immediately upon finishing Book 1. And happily, I loved Sworn in Steel just as much.

As another reviewer pointed out, Drothe is exceptional among fantasy book heroes because he’s not. Exceptional. At least, not particularly so. He’s smart and scrappy, sure, but not impossibly smart or annoyingly scrappy. He has no magical powers, nor any supernatural strength to mention. What he is, is determined. Once he’s made up his mind, he’s damn hard to stop. And he’s loyal to his friend, Degan.

In fact, the friendship between Drothe and Degan is one of the things I loved most about both of these books. The sincerity of their commitment, even when it was put to the most severe of tests, left me rooting for each of them, throughout both their separate, and combined, journeys. It was a reminder that true friendship can withstand terrible hardship and trauma, and put me to mind of the bond between Scott Lynch’s Locke Lamora and his friend, Jean–but that’s a review for another day.

Hulick’s world building worked for me, with just enough political intrigue to make sense, but not so much as to slow down the plot, which, btw, is filled with action, drama, some very bad (and scary) players, and some great swordplay.

I’ve read there is to be a 3rd book in the series, but have found nothing definite as to when. I’m sincerely hoping the rumors are correct. I’d love to join Drothe and Degan on another adventure, and I highly recommend that you folks who enjoy the realm of fantasy check out the world of the Kin. I don’t think you’ll be sorry.

Among Thieves

Sworn in Steel

 

 

 

The #GrishaTrilogy by #LeighBardugo #TuesdayBookBlog

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

I may have disappeared for far too long, being caught up in writing five novels over a three-year period, but I’ve decided I really want to get back to this blog, and my love of sharing great books with other readers. I plan to make Tuesdays my day for reviews, and I’m starting today with a series of books that knocked my socks off: Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha Trilogy.

As usual, I don’t like to give away very much about the plot of any book, but I will tell you exactly what I think of the writing, the characters, and the story line.

For my money, Leigh Bardugo knocked this series right out of the ballpark. She put just enough spin on her fantasy world to make it intriguingly different, filled with a highly developed political structure, and exactly the right amount of backstory to let readers know how it all came to pass. The story line was strong and very interesting, but for me, the real success of the entire series rests with the excellent character development. I adored the love story at the heart of the adventure, and thought Alina and Mal were perfect, even down to their IM-perfections, which were what made them so believable. The turmoil plaguing a land in desperation was dark and disturbing–almost as much so as the source of it all, The Darkling, a truly compelling and frightening creation. Even the secondary characters were well developed and worth caring about.

There were times when I was heartbroken, fearing the worst would happen to the people I’d grown to love, and times when my heart sang with shared happiness as they conquered yet another seemingly insurmountable task. But I never gave up hope that Good would conquer Evil, and the world would be made whole again. Were my hopes justified? I’ll let you decide.

If you enjoy richly developed fantasy worlds with believable heroines and heroes, accomplishing UN-believable things, this series ought to be just your cup of tea. You should head right on over to Amazon and buy these books today. Go ahead and get all three. Once you’ve read the first one, you won’t be able to stop. (And then you’ll likely do as I did, and start right in on Bardugo’s next book, The Six of Crows–even the COVER is gorgeous on that one.)

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Shadow and Bone

Siege and Storm

Ruin and Rising

 

Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

If you are looking for the type of review that goes into great detail about plot and characters, you may as well quit reading right now. I don’t do an awful lot of that anyway, and I’m darn well not going to give away a single thing about this book, except this: it’s bloody wonderful! Finished it over breakfast today, crying on my poached eggs, and any book that brings me to tears like that is a 5-star book in my mind. It means that it engaged me so completely that the characters and the world became real, and I was fully invested in each.

I’ve been a fan of Rachel Caine for a long time. Her Weather Warden series and its Outcast Season spin-off were terrific fun. I even enjoyed every single book in her YA Morganville Vampire series. But she has soared to new heights with this one. I loved every plot twist, every setting description, and most of all, every character. Scholar Wolfe and Jess Brightwell, in particular, as different as they are. Both broke my heart, and the only thing about the entire book that I hate is the fact that I have such a long, long time to wait for the next one. As you can probably guess, I highly recommend this new series.

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Scholar (Christopher) Wolfe

Ink and Bone

If you decide to place an order with amazon, clicking through from my links will give me credit. If you are enjoying my reviews on Bookin It, its a great way to let me know! Thanks!

Princeps’ Fury by Jim Butcher

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Finished reading Princeps’ Fury at midnight last night, and it was so blasted good, I downloaded Book 6, First Lord’s Fury,  immediately, and started right in on it. Of course, I fell asleep before I finished the first chapter, but at least I found out what happened in the next scene. This series is SO action-packed, and filled with courageous souls doing heroic things, I just can’t put it down. It’s fun, it’s fast-paced, and it’s scary as heck at times. In short, I love it. And I highly recommend you start with Book 1,  Furies of Calderon, and read straight through. Yes, the books are long and there are SIX of them. But, they are oh, so worth it!

Princeps’ Fury

Cursor’s Fury by Jim Butcher

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My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Can’t imagine what took me so long to start on Jim Butcher’s Codex Alera series. I guess I never figured I’d really enjoy epic fantasy, but I figured wrong. These books just keep getting better. Butcher’s writing gets stronger and stronger, just as it does during the Dresden Files series, and the characters become more engaging and interesting as the stories progress. 

Due to the scope of this tale, I’m not going to try to go into very much detail in this review, but I will say that Tavi is turning into a hero for the ages, and his journey is amazing. Amara and Bernard are a couple to reckon with, and there are villains both evil and complicated to stir up trouble in every book. Some very interesting clues have been laid out like a trail of breadcrumbs, and I find myself thinking ahead to what they all mean. I’ve been right at times, and surprised at others, and I’m eager to read the last three books and see the whole back story unraveled before me.

If you’ve never tried epic fantasy before, this could be a good place to start. If you are already a fan of the genre, but haven’t read the Codex Alera books, you should check them out. They are fast paced, full of adventure, and a lot of fun. And oh, yeah…there’s a bit of love thrown in for good measure. I highly recommend these books, and this third of the series is the best so far.

Cursor’s Fury

The Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher

furies of caderon 2My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Well, I finally got desperate waiting for the next Dresden Files book to come out. (It’s still a long way off!) I’ve never been a big follower of anything that smacked of epic fantasy, but beggars can’t be choosers. So I downloaded Book 1 of Butcher’s Codex Alera series, Furies of Calderon. And guess what? I liked it. A lot, actually, especially considering that Butcher’s writing has improved greatly over the years. Still, the concept was good, the characters engaging, the monsters nice and scary, and the action fast and furious. All in all, I was so pleased, I immediately downloaded Book 2, Academ’s Fury, and started right in on that. And now, I’m reading Book 3, Cursor’s Fury. Read more…

Today’s Guest Blogger: The Esteemed Mr. Pounce

 

Mr. Pounce

All right, fine.

I can’t believe my mistress talked me into this.

Blogging, I’ve never been party to a more absurd task in my thousand years, and yet here I am, blogging. Praise be to all the gods for this vocal recognition software, otherwise she’d be on her own. Imagine a post from me if she forced me to type. I assume it would appear quite a bit like this: EIT*(YE_PIJDFikop89)_#*)#*)@(Q!*)__+

While I’m sure there are some alien nations to whom that would make perfect sense, the less-than-civilized human race probably can’t make heads or tails of it at all.

And you call yourselves clever. Hmph.

Right, blogging.

Ugh, just saying that word out loud makes my teeth clench. I can’t believe I agreed to this. I don’t even know what I’m supposed to talk about here, or why any of you would even care what I, a once great sorcerer of the Midsummer Empire, have to say. That was so long ago, and I don’t like to talk about it, so don’t ask.

I don’t suppose you want to hear about the bird I watched in the bath for a three hours this morning, do you? It was lovely. Bright red, its wing black-tipped. Completely unaware of my dutiful inspection, I would have caught it had someone left the door open so I could slip out. Then again, maybe not. The master frightened it away with his triumphant bellow from the study.

He finished his novel. Whoop de doo. Maybe one of them will finally clean out my litter pan.

Now she’s staring over my shoulder, reading the words as they appear on the screen as if she can’t hear me speaking them. Snoop. Can’t a cat get any privacy? Out with you, vapid human. To the market for my sardines. I am blogging, and I can’t do it with you eavesdropping.

Ha! She’s offended. Good! It’s not like I ask to listen to all her telephone conversations. The least she can do is leave me alone while I’m broadcasting to the world.

Alone at last, I suppose I should finally tell you who I am, but I am loathe to speak those words aloud. I detest my name. For the last six years I’ve suffered beneath its playful implication, enduring the sing-song caterwaul as she scratches beneath my chin and asks, “What should we do today, Mr. Pounce? Would you like a ponytail holder to bat around the kitchen? Do you want to watch me paint my toenails?”

Because cats love nothing more than to sit around watching paint dry. Please.

Do not call me Mr. Pounce. I implore you. Who names a cat something so dreadful? Who?

If only she knew how absurd she was. How ridiculously insufferable… And yet, I adore her. Don’t tell her so, please. If she ever knew I felt this way about her, she’d never let me live it down. She’d be impossible to live with, always asking for cuddles and kisses, and while I do tend to enjoy the occasional snuggle (I can’t believe I just said that out loud, where is the delete-audio function on this thing?) it would only give her the wrong idea if she knew I actually liked her affections.

I suppose that’s why this curse, the one that forced me from my body into this dreadful feline form so long ago, is apropos. I once thrived on the affections of others; unfortunately those others did not always belong to me, and it was my own lack of self-control that landed me where I am today. Perhaps one day I will tell that story to the master, so he can write it down in one of his books, or maybe I’ll blog it.

Blog. Ugh.

I suppose this isn’t so bad, really. I do love the sound of my own voice, but you know what I’d love right now best of all? A nap. I think it’s time for me to take one. Yawn, and stretch, and all of that. Be gone with you, now, but don’t forget to indulge in the story about my mistress, Siren. Well, really it’s a story about yours truly. I am in it, therefore ‘tis about me, and that is what makes it a good story.

Go on now, off with you. There’s a nice stream of sunlight pouring through the dining room that’s going to be perfect for my snooze.

Mr

To find out more about Mr. Pounce pre-order a copy of Jennifer Melzer’s Siren from Amazon.com. You can also pre-order signed paperbacks from Jennifer Melzer.

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Jennifer Melzer

Fantasy author Jennifer Melzer enjoys spinning elements of the fantastic with strands plucked from the heart. She spent most of her life denying the romantic overtones sewn into her fiction, but awoke one morning and realized every single tales she’d spun somehow revolved around the heart. She has since given into the whim, spinning yarns woven from heartstrings. 

She currently resides in Northeast Pennsylvania with her husband, daughter and a houseful of dragons she must train regularly to keep them from setting fire to the curtains. Nightly she dreams she is laying on the beach watching stars burst over the Atlantic Ocean.

Connect with Jennifer Melzer all over the ‘net!

Facebook
Twitter
Google+
Goodreads

 

 

 

Wednesday Guest Blogger: Vanessa Finaughty

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Instead of our regular Author Interview today, I’d like to introduce my first guest blogger, Vanessa Finaughty. Vanessa is in the middle of a blog tour, and has taken the time to answer some questions about her new series. Hope you enjoy finding out why you should love Lashlor Leaflin . I confess, I’m intrigued.

5 Reasons to Love Wizard of Ends’ Main Character, Lashlor Leaflin
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Wizard of Ends is the fast-paced fantasy adventure series in which Lashlor Leaflin is the main character. Lashlor is one of the author’s favourite characters across all her books, and here are five reasons for you to love him too: Read more…

New Release Alert!

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My friends Nick Taylor and Alisha Payne have just released their newest book, The Collector’s Treasure, synopsis below. Some of you may remember Nick and Alisha were featured in a Wednesday Author’s Interview a few weeks back, and I asked them to keep us posted on their upcoming releases. Hope you’ll check this out. I think the cover is great, and the book sounds like fun, and it can be read as a stand-alone, too. I’m adding it to my list! (Nick says to advise you it’s an adults only novel.) Read more…

Wednesday Author Interview: Jennifer Melzer

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Today, Bookin’ It would like to welcome Fantasy author, Jennifer Melzer. So nice to have you here with us, Jennifer. Can you tell us a bit about how you became a writer? When did you decide that’s what you wanted to be, and what steps did you take to prepare for a writing career?

JM: When I was ten, I got a Fisher Price typewriter for my birthday. Before that, I made up extravagant lies about everything under the sun. After, I started typing the lies out and hiding them in a shoebox I kept under my bed. I don’t know why I hid them. Probably because my mom taught me that lying was morally wrong, but as I got older I started to realize there was so much more to it than lying. I was making up stories, living out little fantasies through these elaborate falsehoods I would never get to live out in any other way. By the time I was sixteen, I had dozens upon dozens of full notebooks of handwritten short stories and novels and I was relatively sure the only thing I would ever know how to do is tell stories. Eventually, I went to university and majored in English and creative writing, and experience I highly recommend.

BI: Well, hiding stories in a shoebox under the bed is a new one. Thanks for sharing that. I love it! Were you inspired by any particular authors, past or present, and what is it about their work that impresses you, or moves you? 

JM: Neil Gaiman has been one of the greatest inspirations throughout the course of my life. As a teenager, I was enraptured by the Sandman comics and absolutely fell in love with Neverwhere when it came out. One of the things that inspires me about his work is that Gaiman has never been afraid to take risks. Sometimes the more fantastic the risk, the better and no matter what kind of stories we tell. 

BI: I’m a big Neil Gaiman fan, myself, though I only discovered him recently. Still catching up with him and Terry Pratchett, another late discovery. What genres do you read most often for pleasure today, Jennifer…those books you gravitate toward the minute you walk into a bookstore? 

JM: Fantasy is my go-to genre of choice, followed by historical fiction centered around the Dark Ages and Medieval Period. Epic fantasy, urban fantasy… Dragons, sorcery, fairytales. I might be a bit of an escapist, but I love stories that take me out of this world. Historical fiction has the same appeal for me because it is a world we’ve already been to, and yet it seems so alien to the world we live in now. 

BI: Good point, about historical fiction being alien to our world today. I can see that. Do you have a dedicated workspace, and are you consistent with the amount of time you spend writing each day? 

JM: At the moment, I work in my bedroom, tucked away from the rest of the household for several hours a day. Consistency, however, depends highly on where I am with what I’m working on. If I’m fully absorbed, I can spend anywhere from five to ten hours a day writing, forgetting there is a world beyond my keyboard. If I’m struggling with a plot point or a character is giving me a hard time, I am far more easily distracted. 

BI: Makes sense to me. Those characters can really run amok with our minds. Do you use visual aids, like Inspiration Boards/Photos or maps of your book’s setting? What reference books or other material do you consult most frequently as you write? 

JM: It’s funny, but as a fantasy writer I have to use a lot more resources than one might think. I find myself consulting maps quite a bit, especially when constructing my own maps of the fantastical worlds I create. Linguistic resources come into play quite a bit, and so do mythology texts. Even when you’re making up monsters or fantastic beings unlike any the world has ever seen before, inspiration is often found in other mythological beasties and stories. 

BI: I can understand that, and I think good world-building would require a ton of research, to be sure it all works together like it should. Jennifer, when you have an idea for a new book, do you sit down and start typing, or do you start with an outline, and figure out all the major plot points first? In other words, is your working style structured and organized, or more organic and free flowing? 

JM: I am what is often referred to as a “pantser,” meaning I write from the seat of my pants. I struggle with outlines, their rigidity and structure making me feel like I’m suffocating. My first draft almost always turns out to be what others might consider their outline. I have tried being a good little plotter my whole life, but the more I plot and plan something, the less likely I am to finish it because I really do feel like I can’t breathe. 

BI: I’m a firm believer in “whatever works for you.” There’s more than one way to write, just like pretty much everything else in life. It’s good you’ve figured out your own approach. Let’s talk about reading again. Do you prefer eBooks, or print? Why? 

JM: I still prefer reading good old fashioned books. I love the way the smell, the way they feel in my hands and there’s no threat of your tablet or eReader battery dying just when you get to the really good parts. As much as I love traditional paper books, however, I tend to buy more eBooks these days because it’s easier and often less expensive. 

BI: I love both, myself, each for different reasons. Can you tell us about the books have you published, and where we can buy them? 

JM: My current project is The Serpent of Time series. The first book in the series, Edgelanders, came out in February, 2014, and is available in paperback and eBook formats. The audiobook, narrated by the incredibly talented Veronica Giguere, will be available by summer’s end. When Princess Lorelei of Leithe overhears her fiancé’s plot to murder her on the way to their wedding, she does the only smart thing: she runs.  Into the Edgelands, the savage, woodland home of the legendary U’lfer, a race of fierce wolves who walk as men, she knows she is as good as dead, but she would rather be torn apart by werewolves than die by Trystay’s hand.  A young U’lfer warrior named Finn catches her scent on the wind and finds himself possessed by an unnatural desire to shield and protect her from that which hunts her. From the moment he first sees her, Finn knows she is his. He feels her heartbeat, knows her soul, and he will do anything, even suffer exile from the Edgelands to be with her.  But there is more to Lorelei than meets the eye. She is like Finn; there is U’lfer blood in her veins, a beast beneath her skin she never knew was there. The answers she seeks lie south, in the frozen tundra of Rimian, where a village of people just like her have been waiting for Lorelei to come and save them since before she was even born. 

There is a page on my website with links to worldwide sales venues, as well as free samples of text and audio. 

BI: Great synopsis of the story line, and absolutely beautiful cover, too! Edgelanders sounds like something I’d enjoy. (Have added it to my TBR list). Are you currently working on a new book? When do you expect it to be available? 

JM: I am wrapping up edits on the second book in the Serpent of Time series: Sorrow’s Peak. It will be available in eBook and paperback formats by autumn 2014, but an exact release date has not been announced at this time. 

BI: You’ll have to keep us updated on that one. I’d like to know what you think is the best thing about being a writer? The worst? 

JM: I love everything about being a writer, and I always have. I love the stories and the characters, working through difficult plot points and coming out feeling as if I’ve only just returned from someplace incredible I can’t wait to share with others. As a storyteller, one has so much freedom and it’s a beautiful thing.   

One of the hardest things is often the amount of self-promotion one has to do in order to make noise in the void of competitive voices vying for reader attention. I love talking about my books, but I love writing them far more and often feel my attention would best be spent on that aspect. Sadly, I know that can’t always be the case. 

Thank you so much for being here with us today, Jennifer. I’m really looking forward to checking out Edgelanders, and I wish you the best of luck with the whole series. 

Jennifer Melzer ap

 Fantasy author Jennifer Melzer enjoys spinning elements of the fantastic with strands plucked from the heart. She spent most of her life denying the romantic overtones sewn into her fiction, but awoke one morning and realized every single tales she’d spun somehow revolved around the heart. She has since given into the whim, spinning yarns woven from heartstrings. 

She currently resides in Northeast Pennsylvania with her husband, daughter and a houseful of dragons she must train regularly to keep them from setting fire to the curtains. Nightly she dreams she is laying on the beach watching stars burst over the Atlantic Ocean. 

Connect with Jennifer Melzer all over the ‘net!

Facebook

Twitter

Google +

Goodreads

Tumblr

Wattpad

You can get a copy of Edgelanders from Jennifer’s own website, Jennifer Melzer, Author

Or from amazon.com: 

Edgelanders: Serpent of Time Book 1 

 

 

What Are You Reading?

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If it’s Friday, it must be What Are You Reading Day! Me, I’m still working my way through Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn Trilogy. I finished Book 1, and am closing in on the halfway  point of Book 2. Still enjoying it very much, though I’m worried about some of the characters. Having already lost one I really liked, I’m not sure who else will survive all the way to the end of Book 3. All in all, I’d say it’s a pretty good introduction to a fantasy epic.

Your turn, now. What are you reading this week? As always, inquiring minds wanna know. (And some of us are taking notes!)

What Are You Reading?

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Happy Freya’s Day, everyone! It’s that time again…what are you reading this week? Me, I’m finally getting around to reading an actual, straight-on fantasy. Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn trilogy. Guess what? I’m loving it, so far. It’s really a fun read, with fantastic world-building, though I think it could possibly take me the rest of my natural life to finish it. The first book, itself, is very long, as are the other two in the trilogy, which I downloaded in a “combo-pack.” I’ll be reviewing it when I finish, of course…if I can still remember how to type by then. 😉

Your turn! What are you reading? Inquiring minds wanna know, as always!

The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson

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My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Let me be clear right up front. I’ve never been a big fan of fantasy or sci-fi. I prefer my tales of other worldly beings to be set right here on planet earth, often without most mortals being aware that strange things are walking among them, a la Urban Fantasy. For some reason, this has always seemed more Read more…

Deeply Odd by Dean Koontz

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My Rating 4 of 5 Stars

I have always enjoyed Dean Koontz more than any other writer of modern horror, bar none. In addition to his ability to scare the bejeebers out of me, he always writes with compassion, and with a great respect and love for the women in his stories. It never fails to convince me that Koontz is a man who actually understands both love and grace. The entire Odd Thomas series Read more…

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane by Neil Gaiman

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My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

I hardly know what to say about this magical, yet creepy, little book. In some ways, it was everything I hoped it would be. For certain, I couldn’t put it down once I started reading. In other ways, I found it disturbing and, in part, a bit unsatisfactory. NOTE: POSSIBLE SPOILERS AHEAD! Read more…

Stardust by Neil Gaiman

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My Rating: 3 1/2 of 5 Stars

I have very mixed feelings about Stardust, I’m afraid. It is a sweet, though short, fable with a mystical touch of fairy magic and a strange assortment of characters. There were surprises here and there that I really appreciated, and the ending was touching. Mostly. Our hero, Tristran Thorne, is off on a mission to collect a fallen star Read more…

What Are You Reading?

bearreading

Yep, it’s time for another What Are You Reading post. Inquiring minds wanna know!

I have just gotten started on Neil Gaiman’s Stardust. I’m not very far into the book, but I am thoroughly enjoying what I have read to date. I can’t wait to see how all these many characters connect to each other, and whether or not the hero’s search for a fallen star, which he intends to present to his lady love, will be fruitful. And if it is, will said ladylove really have been worth the journey, or is his destiny to meet someone else along the way? This is the third book of Gaiman’s I’ve read, and so far, his writing hasn’t failed to pull me into worlds of fantasy and dreams and occasionally, nightmares.  I will be reviewing Stardust as soon as I manage to find time to finish it.

So tell me, my fellow bloggers, what are YOU reading this week?  Let us hear from you!

Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Ransom Riggs' Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children Cover

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

My main comment upon completing Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is that the book is…peculiar! In a good way, to my mind, though I know it’s not Read more…

Spellcrossed – Barbara Ashford

Barbara Ashford's Spellcrossed Cover

MY RATING:  5 of 5 Stars

This sequel to “Spellcast,” which I reviewed here last week, was entertaining to the very last page.  I won’t say it captivated me quite as thoroughly as the first book, but that’s probably because it was a continuation of the same story, and I was already familiar with the world and the characters involved.  I can definitely say that I was very glad to have read Book 1 with Book 2 waiting in the wings.  I NEEDED to know how it was all going to turn out, and in that, “Spellcrossed” didn’t disappoint.

For one thing, it was quite clear why Read more…

Quote #9 – Maggie Stiefvater

“Dory is what Mum used to call a “strong-looking woman,” which means that, from the back, she looked like a man, and, from the front, you preferred the back”
― Maggie Stiefvater,  The Scorpio Races

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