James A. Hetley's THE SUMMER COUNTRY <-- Check it out at Amazon.
I wasn't sure what to expect when I began THE SUMMER COUNTRY by James A. Hetley. A first novel by a male author--could I expect the book to have a romance (for the purposes of this site)? Happily, Hetley's contemporary fantasy did not disappoint. It's a dark-edged, urban, Celtic fantasy story which reminded me a bit of Emma Bull's WAR FOR THE OAKS.
Maureen is a messed up young woman still traumatized from events in her childhood. The book starts on a dreary urban winter day on which an unearthly person, a fey creature, stalks Maureen. She's saved by the appearance of Brian Albion, a soldier who kills the stalker in a rather gory manner. Brian introduces Maureen to the world of magic, telling her it's her heritage. Brian and Maureen are both of the Old Ones--meaning a hybrid of human and an older Neandertal-like species--and are being stalked by other conscienceless Old Ones for their precious fertility.
This book is mainly Maureen's story, as she comes to grip with her mental illness and her issues with men during her fight for survival against her hunters/captors....--Preeti more...
Susan Sizemore's DECEPTIONS--recommended Check it out at Amazon.---->
I highly recommend this one too! The heroine, Olympias, is the enforcer of Washington D.C. and the toughest vampire we've met yet. She's 2000 years old and the mother of Alexander the Great. She can be very tough--cold and scary at times--but I'm getting used to that with these books. It's actually a more realistic portrayal to me of what a vampire would really be like. But then you get the signs of softness once in a while. That she has avoided taking another companion because she can't bear it when they become vampires and leave and start new lives without her.
The hero is ex-military and pretty tough, too. And also very pyschic. He's head of a group of psychics that are experimenting with astral projection. Which leads to some interesting things.
Olympias is overextended and is assisted by her secretary/slave/companion wannabe, Sara. Having too many pans in the fire has led to a weakness that the enemy is exploiting by creating a conspiracy to destroy Olympias.
A neat thing about this book is that you get a secondary romance that involves one of the nicest vampires I've evermet (or ever will meet) in one of Sizemore's books. Not to say that it ever gets sappy. Oh and Olympias has her hellhound to give her companionship and some surprises. I'm already wondering what she has in store next!!--Linda more...
Susan Sizemore's LAWS OF THE BLOOD: DECEPTIONS (Book 4) <-- Check it out at Amazon.
I could finally read again, and took Susan Sizemore's LAWS 0F THE BLOOD:DECEPTIONS around with me as my 'carry around book'. It is interesting - set in Washington, D.C. Olympias is the several thousand year old enforcer of the city. She ends up having to deal with the nests of vampires in her area trying to oust her and a special gov't. group of psychics that do out of body 'watcher' type stuff finding out about vampires - which is where our hero comes in.
I would not really class this as a romance novel, more of an action/horror novel with some romance. Olympias is not really a sympathetic character, nor does the reader really get to spend enought time reading about her to really get attached. I was more interested in the secondary characters and one of the secondary romances in the book - those characters I liked and was hoping they would get together.
That said, the book was a fast paced easy read and I did enjoy most of it - in my personal book journal it is a C+.--Shelley
Cherijo's story continues as she tries to face the challenges of being a doctor, wife, mother, and Jorenian clan member. Cherijo's daughter, Marel, is quite the precocious toddler and seems to have a knack (or more??) of escaping her guardians and turning up in the most unexpected places. Baby blues seem to be the theme in the first half with even Squib getting yearnings to find a mate and have his own baby. Between accidents, Marel, family politics, and alien attacks, things keep busy. And that isn't counting the fact that Cherijo's keeping her promises by taking Hawk to his homeworld to find his father, taking Dhreen home to cure his people, and finding some answers at Maggie's (her mysterious former caretaker and invader of dreams) planet.
I recommend this book, though my enjoyment was a little more uneven than in the other books of this series. I didn't care for the visit to Hawk's planet and, well, the planet or inhabitants. Hawk was the half human/half alien with wings from her last book. I liked him a lot and had high hopes for this visit. So I was disappointed in that part, but then the story once more improved with some surprises and things tied together in ways I wasn't expecting. And if there were a few people who occasionally irritated me, they were offset by Squib's romance, Marel's interactions with people, meeting a Hsktskt commander and friend of Duncan's, and other surprises. There's always something happening. I'm looking forward to the next installment!! :-)--Linda
I also enjoyed this book and recommend it. I especially enjoyed Cherijo and Duncan's work on their relationship. I was also disappointed in Hawk's father's homeworld, but really enjoyed the rest of the book.--Shelley
Just finished J. D. Robb's PURITY IN DEATH. I thought this was a good entry into the series. The mystery involves a rather nasty computer virus, but where this book is good is in the characters. Eve and Roark are always great, but the supporting cast is really fun in this one and there is a lot of interesting interpersonal stuff going on.--Shelley
SUMMER KNIGHT- Jim Butcher (Book 4 of The Dresden Files)
<-- Check it out at Amazon (it's not a series we've kept track of in our database).
Harry Dresden, professional wizard, has been in a bad state, desperately trying to find a cure for the woman he loves. But he's not left alone long, as catastrophies seem to follow him...or is it bad luck? Between having the white council of wizards in town to judge him, vampire assassins trying to kill him, becoming in debt to Mab, Queen of Air and Darkness, trying to find a killer, and save the world, he has his hands full!! I highly recommend this book. While the romance is momentarily on hold, the action is nonstop....with lots of creatures (seelie and unseelie) , a fantastic plot and, of course, Harry's brand of humor. Loved every minute of it!!!--Linda
Sharon Shinn returns to the planet called Samaria, with a new tale of an earlier time...
Legend has it that the original settlers of Samaria were carried there by the loving hands of the god Jovah. To keep the peace, he created a legion of land-dwelling angels, led by an appointed Archangel. Now, two hundred years later, Jovah's latest appointee is the Archangel Gaaron, whose dependability and allegiance to the people of Samaria make him a wise choice. And for Gaaron's life-mate, his Angelica, Jovah has chosen the woman Susannah, of the nomadic Edori tribe.
With trepidation, Susannah bows to the will of Jovah. For her heart is still with her people and her Edori lover, faithless though he might be.
In the lofty reaches of the Angel Eyrie, an unspoken affection slowly develops between the two. Then word comes to Gaaron of a terrible threat besetting the land--black-clad strangers who call fire down from the sky, leaving death and destruction in their wake.
Now what is in the heart of Archangel and Angelica may never be known, as the very future of the planet hangs in the balance...
P.S.-Another striking John Jude Palencar cover for Shinn. The editor said that they deliberately used other artists for her non-Samaria books in order to make the Samaria books have a unified and easily identified look.
With her New York Times bestselling Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter novels, Laurell K. Hamilton wraps readers up in stories of suspense and sensuality. Cerulean Sins is no exception. Now, Anita learns what it's like to be at the new end of a centuries old bloodline--and just how far she'll let herself get pushed around...
How the mightly have fallen! Once a sworn enemy of all vampires, Anita is now the human consort of both Jean-Claude, the Master Vampire, and Micah, the leopard shapeshifter. But her love life doesn't stop there. It can't. For Anita--not quite as human as she once was--is consumed by both the lusts of the vampire and the primal hungers of the wereleopards. Desires that must be sated--time and time again...
But it is Jean-Claude who needs her now. His oldest ancestor has sent one of her vicious and powerful underlings to St. Louis, putting Jean-Claude and his clan on the defensive. Unsure of where she stands with the interloper, Anita finds herlself tested as never before--needing all the dark forces her passion can muster to save the ones she loves the most...
Based on the dustjacket blurb above, it seems even the publishers now admit the books are about Anita's lusts and passions and desires (which must be sated "time and time again" !!!) more than anything else. Bleh. And I so used to love this series.
P.S.-I will no doubt still purchase this book.
P.P.S.-According to Merriam-Webster, something "cerulean" resembles "the blue of the sky".
<-- Buy it at Amazon. Read the back cover copy here...
CALL TO REBELLION
Ward, ruler of Hurog, is striving to restore his lands and people to prosperity, wanting nothing more than a quiet life. But when an old friend, escaping from High King Jakoven's torturers, seeks refuge in his keep, Ward can no longer ignore the growing rebellion against the tyrannical High King. He realizes that he cannot stand aside--he must join with the rebels.
However, Jakoven has a secret weapon with which he intends to crush the rebellion: Farsonsbane, a magical artifact that has destroyed entire cities. But first, Jakoven needs blood to awaken it. Dragon's blood. The very blood that courses through Ward's veins...
<-- Buy it at Amazon. Read the back cover copy here...
LOVE, DEATH, AND MAGIC
Alissa never believed in magic. But then she went to the Hold, a legendary fortress where human Keepers once learned magic from enigmatic Masters. Under the tutelage of the last surviving Master, Alissa discovered that she had inherited her father's magical ability.
But the Hold is ruled by Bailic, the renegade Keeper who seized the First Truth, a book of magic he will use to harness the might of the city of the dead and wreak a war of total devastation. The book has thwarted Bailic's every attempt to access it, while it continually calls to Alissa--who must summon all her will to resist it. For, if she gives in to the First Truth's ultimate power and knowledge, she will be utterly changed--and the man she loves could be lost to her forever...
More from Con Jose
I still have so much to say from the con and have only now recovered enough to do anything about it.
I've scanned in the cover flats of three upcoming books--HIDDEN TRUTH by Dawn Cook, DRAGON BLOOD by Patricia Briggs, and ANGELICA by Sharon Shinn--and added them to the forthcoming books page on the site.
Many thanks to Oscar C.! At the end of the ACE forthcoming books panel, this web site's name came up in conversation during the general milling about the front table. Oscar, it turns out, is a fan of our site and introduced himself. Much excitement on my part ensued (we have a fan!) When I explained my intentions for the cover flats, he gave me the HIDDEN TRUTH one because it would get greater attention for the book and author.