Friday, 27 May 2016

Fringe Runner - Book Review


Fringe Runner (Fringe Series, #1)
by Rachel Aukes


What is it about:
The first in a new space opera series!

After the colonization of Mars and Europa, it took us fewer than five generations to reach beyond our solar system and discover new planets capable of supporting human life. Too far away to be governed under Earth law, the Collective was formed. Several hundred years later, the Collective has expanded to a thriving system of six inhabited worlds, but power struggles are common, and a seemingly inevitable interplanetary war looms on the horizon. It’s nearly impossible for the working class to make ends meet.

Aramis Reyne is one of the working class. An old space captain hounded by arthritis and war memories, he struggles to make enough credits to feed his crew and keep his ship flying by running mail and supplies to the farthest, most dangerous reaches of the Collective known as the fringe. When he’s offered a no-questions-asked contract to pick up a package, he jumps at the opportunity. But, he quickly learns that he should’ve asked questions…and that there are far worse things in the Collective than being broke.


What did I think of it:
If you haven't noticed I love Rachel Aukes' Deadland Saga, I haven't been singing its praises loud enough. So when I was asked to read and review her new book Fringe Runner, I jumped at the chance.

And Fringe Runner is a great read!

Obviously the Deadland Saga is better in my opinion (Zombies!), but Fringe Runner is a seriously cool SF adventure.

Reyne is a cool lead character. He's not a virile cocky alpha dude, but instead an older seasoned captain, struggling with age and his past. His crew is very interesting as well. My favorite was Throttle, the pilot and Reyne's adopted daughter. All of them get caught up in events that might destroy the life they have, and even kill them if they can't figure out what's going on.

I was hooked from the start. Aukes knows how to write a compelling story. There is lots of action, conspiracies, and dangerous situations. I liked getting to know Reyne and his past, and was rooting for him and his crew to come out of their predicament alive.

The world building is well done without unnecessary info dumps and while some things stay vague, there's enough explanation to be able to picture the planets and people Reyne and his crew encounter.

Some of the major story lines got their solution in this book, making sure you aren't left totally frustrated when finishing the book, but there's enough still unresolved to make you eager for the next book.

All in all I very much enjoyed this book and will be keeping an eye out for the next.

Why should you read it:
It's an action-packed SF adventure.


Find buy links here

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Leaders: a Twin-Bred novel - Release Day Alert

You might remember my reviews of Twin-Bred and Reach, the first two books in the Twin-Bred series. They are both beautiful and thought-provoking. So I'm happy to tell you the third book is out today!

And for those who haven't started this series yet, you can now get all three books in a boxed set.

Beware: the blurb of Leaders might contain spoilers if you haven't read the previous books.


Leaders: a Twin-Bred novel
by Karen A. Wyle


They fled Tofarn and found a new home. Should they care what happens to the old?

The Twin-Bred are finally ready to welcome visitors to New Landing, the planet on which they settled after their exodus from Tofarn. They have invited Lan-sol, child of the only Tofa Twin-Bred still on Tofarn, to cross the galaxy through the same wormhole that channels communications between the two planets. But suddenly, all communication becomes impossible.

Lan-sol must decide whether to venture into the now-silent unknown. And the Twin-Bred must ask themselves whether the fate of those they left behind is important enough to justify a return to the planet they once called home.





Find Karen A. Wyle on Amazon

Buy Leaders for Kindle here and the paperback here
Buy the boxed set for Kindle here

More information about the series, and buy links can be found here


Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Strike - Book Review


Strike (Hit #2)
by Delilah S. Dawson


What is it about:
The hit list was just the beginning.

Time to strike back.

After faking her own death to escape her term as an indentured assassin for Valor Savings Bank, Patsy is on the run with her boyfriend, Wyatt. All she wants to do is go home, but that’s never going to happen—not as long as Valor’s out to get her and the people she loves.

Left with no good choices, Patsy’s only option is to meet with a mysterious group that calls itself the Citizens for Freedom.

Led by the charismatic Leon Crane, the CFF seem like just what Patsy has been looking for. Leon promises that if she joins, she’ll finally get revenge on Valor for everything they’ve done to her—and for everything they’ve made her do.

But Patsy knows the CFF has a few secrets of their own. One thing is certain: they’ll do absolutely anything to complete their mission, no matter who’s standing in their way. Even if it’s Patsy herself.


What did I think of it:
I loved Hit, the first book in this series, so when the awesome Jeffe managed to get a signed copy of Strike for me I was over the moon. And I dove right in to read it of course.

This book is even better than the first.

Patsy and Wyatt join a group that fights against Valor, but soon they find that this might have landed them out of the frying pan, but into the fire.

Where in Hit the interaction was mainly between Patsy and Wyatt, here there are more people Patsy has to deal with. New characters get introduced. some are cool, some creepy, and others I wasn't sure about. Patsy and Wyatt will have to figure out who to trust and how to deal with those that might have bad intentions.

There's lots of action and Patsy has to stay sharp to survive, and to keep those important to her alive as well. She has to think on her feet, and at times she is forced to pick the lesser of two evils instead of being a hero and save the day.

I was on the edge of my seat and was rooting for Patsy to come out on top of the situation.

The ending is satisfying, but also makes me eager to find out what will happen next. I do hope there will be more books in this series, because I am hooked.

Why should you read it:
It's an action-packed gritty YA read.


buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Teaser Tuesdays - Marooned


"The forest grows fast," Red said. "Probably not more than a few months. I wonder why we weren't warned, though."
"Warned?" Callina Bettis picked up on his remark. "Are we in some kind of danger?"

(page 18, Star Cruise: Marooned by Veronica Scott)


Buy from Amazon

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, 23 May 2016

The Pages of the Mind - Early Book Review


The Pages of the Mind (The Twelve Kingdoms #4/The Uncharted Realms #1)
by Jeffe Kennedy


What is it about:
An Orphan's Throne

Magic has broken free over the Twelve Kingdoms. The population is beset by shapeshifters and portents, landscapes that migrate, uncanny allies who are not quite human…and enemies eager to take advantage of the chaos.

Dafne Mailloux is no adventurer--she's a librarian. But the High Queen trusts Dafne's ability with languages, her way of winnowing the useful facts from a dusty scroll, and even more important, the subtlety and guile that three decades under the thumb of a tyrant taught her.

Dafne never thought to need those skills again. But she accepts her duty. Until her journey drops her into the arms of a barbarian king. He speaks no tongue she knows but that of power, yet he recognizes his captive as a valuable pawn. Dafne must submit to a wedding of alliance, becoming a prisoner-queen in a court she does not understand. If she is to save herself and her country, she will have to learn to read the heart of a wild stranger. And there are more secrets written there than even Dafne could suspect...


What did I think of it:
Am I biased because there's a lake in this book that's named after me?

Maybe a little, but only in so much that I made soft squee sounds when coming across references about that lake and the kingdom that lake is in. (Hey: when someone names a lake after you, you're allowed to squee!)

But even if there wasn't a lake named after yours truly, this is yet another story to fall in love with.

Dafne has been supporting and helping others for a long time. Her own dreams have faded, and she has almost made peace with the fact that she will always be the bridesmaid and never the bride, so to speak. Then she is send on a diplomatic quest, and she is pushed into more adventure than she could ever have dreamed of.

I have liked Dafne since she was first introduced in The Mark of the Tala. She's practical, kind, loyal, and a book nerd. She might not know how to handle a blade, but she does know how to handle delicate negotiations - words are her weapon - but when she ends upon an island where no one speaks the same language as she, that makes it a bit difficult to communicate.

But Dafne is no damsel in distress. She rises to the challenge and adapts.

I loved this story and the romance at the heart of it. King Nakoa is intriguing, charismatic, and knows what he wants. The romance between Dafne and Nakoa is delicious and hot. It was so good to read how they try to communicate and get to know each other.

The world building is once again wonderful. I love the exotic island Dafne ends up on and the secrets the island slowly reveals.

The romance and main storyline are resolved in this book (very satisfactory I might add), but there's enough revealed about the world that there is plenty of room for many more stories to come. I can only hope Jeffe will keep writing them.

I already pre-ordered the next book which will release in December.

Why should you read it:
It's a wonderful and delicious Fantasy Romance read.


find buy links here


Friday, 20 May 2016

On McPig's Wishlist - Zom-B Clans

I really want to continue reading this series, but the cheaper paperback version of Zom-B Clans won't release until January 2017. I will probably cave and get the more expensive one soon.


Zom-B Clans (Zom-B #8)
by Darren Shan


B's first mission with the Angels --sentient, do-gooder zombies-- went horribly wrong when vicious members of the Ku Klux Klan attacked New Kirkham, a stronghold of precious human survivors. B is not about to let the racist thugs persecute innocent people, but while saving the town, one of B's oldest friends is kidnapped by the Klan.

The Angels are prepared to do what it takes to save him, but B will have to make some very hard decisions about loyalties--to old friends, to the Angels, and to new families and old.




Thursday, 19 May 2016

The Crown of the Queen - Early Book Review


The Crown of the Queen - A Twelve Kingdoms Novella
by Jeffe Kennedy


What is it about:
Dafne Mailloux, librarian and temporary babysitter to the heirs to the High Throne of the Twelve – now Thirteen – Kingdoms, finds it difficult to leave the paradise of Annfwn behind. Particularly that trove of rare books in temptingly unfamiliar languages. But duty calls, and hers is to the crown. It’s not like her heart belongs elsewhere. But how can she crown a queen who hesitates to take the throne?

What did I think of it:
Voodoo Bride and I are big fans of Jeffe Kennedy, so we were very happy to get a review copy of this novella.

And this is a great novella.

It serves as a bridge between The Talon of the Hawk and the upcoming The Pages of the Mind, filling in details of some events too big to put as an epilogue in the first of those two books, and with not enough impact on the second to start The Pages of the Mind with.

Still there are things happening that fans of the series want to know about. This novella gives us the events surrounding the coronation of Ursula, and gives us a glimpse into Dafne's mind. There are answers to questions readers of The Talon of the Hawk might have had, and exciting glimpses of what might come next.

Having read all the books and novellas in this series, I am not the best person to tell you if this can be read as a standalone, but honestly: Don't! Just read all the books. They're so good!!

All in all this is a delightful novella, that gave me extra information and fluff about lead characters from previous books, and that makes me eager to read The Pages of the Mind to find out what will happen next for Dafne.

Luckily I also got an ARC of The Pages of the Mind :-D

Why should you read it:
It's a wonderful Fantasy Romance read.


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This novella will be part of a duology called For Crown and Kingdom, which will also contain a novella by Grace Draven called The Undying King

For Crown and Kingdom will release on May 31, 2016 and will be available in digital format and print.

Buy links will be added to the bookpage once available:
http://www.jeffekennedy.com/for-crown-and-kingdom/