Monday 31 May 2021

In the Air Tonight - Book Review by Voodoo Bride


In the Air Tonight (Sisters of the Craft #1)
by Lori Handeland

What is it about:
Four centuries ago, in a small Scottish village, three baby girls escaped the wrath of a witch hunter. Today, one young woman will learn about her secret history, her heart's destiny, and the sisters she never knew she had...

With her blue-black hair and dark eyes, Raye Larsen has never fit in with the Scandinavian community of New Bergin, Wisconsin. Being adopted is part of the reason she feels like an outsider, but what really sets Raye apart is her ability to see dead people. Everywhere.

She’s learned to keep her visions to herself . . . until she stumbles onto the ghost of a murder victim who needs Raye’s help. Enter Bobby Doucet, a distractingly handsome homicide detective who has been tracking a killer all the way from New Orleans. Could this be the break in his case he’s been looking for all along?

Meanwhile, the deeper Raye gets involved with the case—and with Bobby—the closer she comes to unlocking the mystery of her own origins. What she discovers about herself could destroy everything she knows . . . and everyone she loves. Is finding the truth worth the risk?

What did Voodoo Bride think of it:
This is a fun read.

I really liked Raye, and the way people treated her reminded me of why I do not like living in small towns and villages.

Then someone or something starts hunting her and things get suspenseful. Enter Bobby Doucet, a yummy detective who is more than willing to protect Raye. I was eager to find where things would lead and I was invested in both the action story and the romance. 

This being a Paranormal Romance it has a satisfying conclusion, but there's two more books that are about Raye's sisters, so I'm definitely going to read those as well.

Why should you read it:
It's has perfect mix of paranormal suspense and romance.

buy from Amazon

Friday 28 May 2021

Fugitive Telemetry - Book Review


Fugitive Telemetry (The Murderbot Diaries #6)
by Martha Wells 

What is it about:
No, I didn’t kill the dead human. If I had, I wouldn’t dump the body in the station mall.

When Murderbot discovers a dead body on Preservation Station, it knows it is going to have to assist station security to determine who the body is (was), how they were killed (that should be relatively straightforward, at least), and why (because apparently that matters to a lot of people—who knew?)

Yes, the unthinkable is about to happen: Murderbot must voluntarily speak to humans!

What did I think of it:
Although this is book 6 in the series it is set before the events in book 5 as far as I can tell. Also: it is sort of a standalone in so far that it's not connected to events in the other books.

And with that we have the only 'flaw' in this novella. I missed the connection to the overall story arc of this series.

Other than that this novella is just as awesome as the other books. Murderbot is cynical and sarcastic as ever, and tries hard to keep the humans from doing stupid things. I was hooked from the start and read the book in one sitting, it was that engaging.

There were appearances of some of my favorite characters, as well as new characters who seemed intriguing. The story is a whodunnit in space and it was set up really well in my opinion. All in all well worth the wait.

Now the waiting for the next book begins.

Why should you read it:
Because Murderbot is awesome!

buy from amazon

Thursday 27 May 2021

On McPig's Radar - The Witness for the Dead


The Witness for the Dead (The Goblin Emperor #2)
by Katherine Addison

Katherine Addison returns to the glittering world she created for her beloved novel, The Goblin Emperor, in this stand-alone sequel.

When the young half-goblin emperor Maia sought to learn who had set the bombs that killed his father and half-brothers, he turned to an obscure resident of his father’s Court, a Prelate of Ulis and a Witness for the Dead. Thara Celehar found the truth, though it did him no good to discover it. He lost his place as a retainer of his cousin the former Empress, and made far too many enemies among the many factions vying for power in the new Court. The favor of the Emperor is a dangerous coin.

Now Celehar lives in the city of Amalo, far from the Court though not exactly in exile. He has not escaped from politics, but his position gives him the ability to serve the common people of the city, which is his preference. He lives modestly, but his decency and fundamental honestly will not permit him to live quietly. As a Witness for the Dead, he can, sometimes, speak to the recently dead: see the last thing they saw, know the last thought they had, experience the last thing they felt. It is his duty use that ability to resolve disputes, to ascertain the intent of the dead, to find the killers of the murdered.

Now Celehar’s skills lead him out of the quiet and into a morass of treachery, murder, and injustice. No matter his own background with the imperial house, Celehar will stand with the commoners, and possibly find a light in the darkness.

buy from amazon

Wednesday 26 May 2021

Teasing on a Wednesday: Spoiler Alert


No more hiding, she'd repeated through a suddenly tight chest. No more hiding. Folk goddamn trio.

(page 46, Spoiler Alert by Olivia Dade)

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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!

Tuesday 25 May 2021

The Promised Queen - Out Now


It's release day for The Promised Queen, the last book in the awesome Forgotten Empires trilogy.

Go get it now, because it is a wonderful conclusion!
(and yes: I 've already read it several times, so I know what I'm talking about!)

The Promised Queen (Forgotten Empires #3)
by Jeffe Kennedy 

In The Promised Queen, the thrilling finale to Jeffe Kennedy's Forgotten Empires trilogy, the fate of the world hangs in the balance as Con, Lia, and their allies sacrifice everything in a final bid to destroy the corrupt empire.

Claim the hand that wears the ring, and the empire falls.

ConrĂ­, former Crown Prince of Oriel, claimed the hand that wears the Abiding Ring, but the prophecy remains unfulfilled. Queen Euthalia of Calanthe returned to her island kingdom, but broken in mind and body. With the blood of war unleashing ancient terrors, Calanthe isn’t the haven it once was.

Lia must use her magical bond with Calanthe to save their people while Con fights to hold off the vengeful Emperor Anure and his wizards. Con and Lia will have to trust in each other—and in love—to fend off ultimate disaster.

Monday 24 May 2021

A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking - Book Review


A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking
by T. Kingfisher

What is it about:
Fourteen-year-old Mona isn’t like the wizards charged with defending the city. She can’t control lightning or speak to water. Her familiar is a sourdough starter and her magic only works on bread. She has a comfortable life in her aunt’s bakery making gingerbread men dance.

But Mona’s life is turned upside down when she finds a dead body on the bakery floor. An assassin is stalking the streets of Mona’s city, preying on magic folk, and it appears that Mona is his next target. And in an embattled city suddenly bereft of wizards, the assassin may be the least of Mona’s worries…

What did I think of it:
I've been curious about the books of Kingfisher for awhile, so decided to give this one a try.

And what a fun read!

This book is both humorous and suspenseful. Mona is an unlikely hero, but circumstances force her into action. Either she finds out what's going on, and stops it, or she might end up dead.

I loved the writing style and the characters. Special kudos to Bob, the sourdough starter! Once I started on the book I was soon hooked and eager to find out where the story would lead. The magic system in was fun an original, I had a great time seeing Mona figure out her bread magic.

All in all a wonderful read. You bet I'll read more books by Kingfisher.

Why should you read it:
It's a really fun Fantasy read.

buy from amazon

Friday 14 May 2021

The Queen's Gambit - Book Review by Gilbert


The Queen's Gambit
by Walter Tevis

What is it about:
An alternative cover edition for this ASIN can be found here.
When she is sent to an orphanage at the age of eight, Beth Harmon soon discovers two ways to escape her surroundings, albeit fleetingly: playing chess and taking the little green pills given to her and the other children to keep them subdued. Before long, it becomes apparent that hers is a prodigious talent, and as she progresses to the top of the US chess rankings she is able to forge a new life for herself. But she can never quite overcome her urge to self-destruct. For Beth, there's more at stake than merely winning and losing.

What did Gilbert think of it:
A lot of people seemed to like the Netflix series that was made based on this book, so I got curious and picked this up.

Even though this book is at times written in a detached way I was hooked from the start. I didn't particularly care for Beth ( I actually loathed her for one particular thing), but still I was curious to see if she could make it in the world of chess. 

I know enough about chess that I could follow some of it, but there were chess moves and talks that went completely over my head. Still the matches Beth plays are written in a way that it didn't get boring for me. 

All in all an interesting read. I might try more by Tevis in the future.

Why should you read it:
It's an interesting read about the competitive world of chess.

buy from amazon

Thursday 13 May 2021

On McPig's wishlist - Rise to the Sun


Rise to the Sun
by Leah Johnson

Three days. Two girls. One life-changing music festival.

Olivia is an expert at falling in love . . . and at being dumped. But after the fallout from her last breakup has left her an outcast at school and at home, she’s determined to turn over a new leaf. A crush-free weekend at Farmland Music and Arts Festival with her best friend is just what she needs to get her mind off the senior year that awaits her.

Toni is one week away from starting college, and it’s the last place she wants to be. Unsure about who she wants to become and still reeling in the wake of the loss of her musician-turned-roadie father, she’s heading back to the music festival that changed his life in hopes that following in his footsteps will help her find her own way forward.

When the two arrive at Farmland, the last thing they expect is to realize that they’ll need to join forces in order to get what they’re searching for out of the weekend. As they work together, the festival becomes so much more complicated than they bargained for, and Olivia and Toni will find that they need each other, and music, more than they ever could have imagined.

Packed with irresistible romance and irrepressible heart, bestselling author Leah Johnson delivers a stunning and cinematic story about grief, love, and the remarkable power of music to heal and connect us all.

Expected publication: July 6th, 2021
preorder at amazon

Wednesday 12 May 2021

Teasing on a Wednesday - Fugitive Telemetry


I've reread all the previous Murderbot books and now it's time to read the newest addition to this cool series!

Station Security had been briefed on the danger from GrayCris but I trusted them as much as they trusted me. (Surprise, it was not very much.)

(page 8, Fugitive Telemetry by Martha Wells)

buy from amazon


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!

Tuesday 11 May 2021

Network Effect - Book Review (repost)

Network Effect (The Murderbot Diaries #5)
by Martha Wells

What is it about:
Murderbot returns in its highly-anticipated, first, full-length standalone novel.

You know that feeling when you’re at work, and you’ve had enough of people, and then the boss walks in with yet another job that needs to be done right this second or the world will end, but all you want to do is go home and binge your favorite shows? And you're a sentient murder machine programmed for destruction? Congratulations, you're Murderbot.

Come for the pew-pew space battles, stay for the most relatable A.I. you’ll read this century.

I’m usually alone in my head, and that’s where 90 plus percent of my problems are.

When Murderbot's human associates (not friends, never friends) are captured and another not-friend from its past requires urgent assistance, Murderbot must choose between inertia and drastic action.

Drastic action it is, then.

What did I think of it:
I was a bit apprehensive when I started on this book, as it seemed a lot of people who loved the novellas were disappointed with this novel.

Turns out I'm not one of those people and I loved it!

I will say I can see why some people loved it less. The novellas are packed with action and have lots of internal Murderbot monologues. If those two things are why you love Murderbot, this book might indeed disappoint.

I myself enjoyed the slower pace of the story. It gave room to explore things that didn't get a lot of room in the novellas. I loved seeing Murderbot interact more with humans and to see how they react to it. And there might have been fewer internal monologues, there were lots of scenes where I got to know Murderbot in new ways, and where Murderbot was forced to talk and think about its feelings.

And there was ART!

All in all I loved this book and I'm eager to get my trotters on the next novella as soon as it releases.

Why should you read it:
Ehm... It's a really awesome SF read.

buy from bookdepository 

Monday 10 May 2021

Home: Habitat, Range, Niche, Territory - Quick Book Review (repost)


Home: Habitat, Range, Niche, Territory (The Murderbot Diaries #4.5)
by Martha Wells

What is it about:
A short story set in the Murderbot Diaries series from the viewpoint of Dr. Mensah.

What did I think of it:
When I heard there was going to be a Q&A with Martha Wells at Short Story Club, and that people who signed up for the Q&A would get the short story Home: Habitat, Range, Niche, Territory for free, you bet I immediately signed up.

And this is a great short story. It is from the viewpoint of Dr. Mensah and I loved seeing Murderbot through her eyes for once. As with all good short stories though, it was much too short in my opinion.

I greatly recommend fans of the Murderbot Diaries to read this story. It's now available to read here

Friday 7 May 2021

Exit Strategy - Book Review (repost)


Exit Strategy (The Murderbot Diaries #4)
by Martha Wells

What is it about:
Murderbot wasn’t programmed to care. So, its decision to help the only human who ever showed it respect must be a system glitch, right?

Having traveled the width of the galaxy to unearth details of its own murderous transgressions, as well as those of the GrayCris Corporation, Murderbot is heading home to help Dr. Mensah—its former owner (protector? friend?)—submit evidence that could prevent GrayCris from destroying more colonists in its never-ending quest for profit.

But who’s going to believe a SecUnit gone rogue?

And what will become of it when it’s caught?

What did I think of it:
Until I read this novella Artificial Condition was my favorite of these novellas (ART!), but now it will have to share first place with Exit Strategy.

Murderbot has answers to several of its questions and is on its way to Dr. Mensah, who bought Murderbot from its corporation and thereby giving Murderbot its freedom. But things have happened while Murderbot was gone, and soon it is in the middle of dangerous politics and games.

Once again there is lots of action while Murderbot tries to save the day. There are returning characters as well, and I loved catching up with them. I read this novella in one sitting, because it was just too suspenseful to put down. I needed to know if all my favorite characters would survive.

All in all another awesome read. I'm hooked on this series!

Why should you read it:
It's a really cool SF novella

buy from amazon

Wednesday 5 May 2021

Rogue Protocol - Book Review (repost)


Rogue Protocol (The Murderbot Diaries #3)
by Martha Wells

What is it about:
SciFi’s favorite antisocial A.I. is again on a mission. The case against the too-big-to-fail GrayCris Corporation is floundering, and more importantly, authorities are beginning to ask more questions about where Dr. Mensah’s SecUnit is.

And Murderbot would rather those questions went away. For good.

What did I think of it:
I'm loving Murderbot more and more with each book. It is such a cool character.

As much as Murderbot would like to be left alone to watch its shows, there's always something intruding. Certainly it can't be that it is starting to care about people, can it? To help Dr. Mensah with the case against GrayCris Murderbot is on the hunt for information. It once again ends up with people who are in way over their heads and need a SecUnit to stay alive.

I love how Murderbot thinks about itself and humans. Its internal monologues are dry and at times sarcastic. I have never related with a construct more! If not for the fact Murderbot wants to be left alone, we'd be fast friends if we ever met for sure.

The story is once again suspenseful and full of action. I cheered Murderbot on and was on the edge of my seat to see if Murderbot would save the day and all involved.

All in all this is yet another great read, and I ordered Network Effect (book 5) even before starting on Exit Strategy (book 4).

Why should you read it:
Murderbot is totally awesome!

buy from amazon

Tuesday 4 May 2021

Teaser Tuesdays - Home: Habitat, Range, Niche, Territory

The journalist flails and runs. The others arrive in a noisy mob, questions, worry, Ratthi exclaiming, "SecUnit jumped over my head!"

(page 16, Home: Habitat, Range, Niche, Territory by Martha Wells)

read here


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 3 May 2021

Artificial Condition - Book Review (repost)


Artificial Condition (The Murderbot Diaries #2)
by Martha Wells

What is it about:
It has a dark past – one in which a number of humans were killed. A past that caused it to christen itself “Murderbot”. But it has only vague memories of the massacre that spawned that title, and it wants to know more.

Teaming up with a Research Transport vessel named ART (you don’t want to know what the “A” stands for), Murderbot heads to the mining facility where it went rogue.

What it discovers will forever change the way it thinks…

What did I think of it:
This is another Hugo read. I wasn't sure if I should read it as it's book 2 in a series, but then Jeffe told me she started it and didn't feel lost even though she hadn't read book 1, so I decided to give it a try as well.

And this is a really fun read. I especially loved ART and the interaction between ART and Murderbot. The two of them really have a unique and cool way of looking at things. I thought Wells did a great job at making them sound and act other than human.

The story itself delves into the past of Murderbot and also is about Murderbot trying to find out where it/they belong and how they want to be.

All in all a very cool novella. I think I'll go back and read the first one as well.

Why should you read it:
It's a very cool SF novella.

Notes on rereading:
Although this book is also perfectly readable on its own, I must say it's a more solid read if you also know what happened in the first book. I got a better grip on what's going on in Murderbot's head and was more invested. I still totally love ART!

Buy from Amazon