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Trapped by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {4 Stars}

Trapped by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {4 Stars}

Trapped by Kevin Hearne
Narrated by Luke Daniels
(The Iron Druid Chronicles #5)
Published by Del Rey, Random House Audio on Nov. 27th, 2012
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Page Length: 290 pages
Audio Length: 9 hrs and 2 mins
How I got my copy: Purchased
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After twelve years of secret training, Atticus O’Sullivan is finally ready to bind his apprentice, Granuaile, to the earth and double the number of Druids in the world. But on the eve of the ritual, the world that thought he was dead abruptly discovers that he’s still alive, and they would much rather he return to the grave.

Having no other choice, Atticus, his trusted Irish wolfhound, Oberon, and Granuaile travel to the base of Mount Olympus, where the Roman god Bacchus is anxious to take his sworn revenge—but he’ll have to get in line behind an ancient vampire, a band of dark elves, and an old god of mischief, who all seem to have KILL THE DRUID at the top of their to-do lists.

4 Stars

Strengths:
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The Devourers by Indra Das {Just Hatched}

Just Hatched Book Feature

Just Hatched is a feature where I share my first impressions of a book after the first chapter. Check out the announcement post for more information.

The Devourers by Indra Das immediately caught my attention with the gorgeous cover and the fascinating premise. I also really love finding books originally published in another country that are crossing over into American publishers since they usually reflect a more authentic experience of that other culture. The Devourers is definitely such a book and I recommend it as long as you are in the right mood for something dark and weird along with the beauty ;-).

Note: I received an advanced copy of The Devourers from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

The Devourers by Indra Das {Just Hatched}

The Devourers by Indra Das
Narrated by Meera Simhan, Shishir Kurup

Published by Del Rey on July 12th, 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Fantasy, Dark Fantasy
Page Length: 306 pages
Audio Length: 13 hrs and 31 mins
How I got my copy: NetGalley, Publisher
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For readers of Neil Gaiman, Margaret Atwood, China Mieville, and David Mitchell comes a striking debut novel by a storyteller of keen insight and captivating imagination.

On a cool evening in Kolkata, India, beneath a full moon, as the whirling rhythms of traveling musicians fill the night, college professor Alok encounters a mysterious stranger with a bizarre confession and an extraordinary story. Tantalized by the man’s unfinished tale, Alok will do anything to hear its completion. So Alok agrees, at the stranger’s behest, to transcribe a collection of battered notebooks, weathered parchments, and once-living skins.

From these documents spills the chronicle of a race of people at once more than human yet kin to beasts, ruled by instincts and desires blood-deep and ages-old. The tale features a rough wanderer in seventeenth-century Mughal India who finds himself irrevocably drawn to a defiant woman—and destined to be torn asunder by two clashing worlds. With every passing chapter of beauty and brutality, Alok’s interest in the stranger grows and evolves into something darker and more urgent.

Shifting dreamlike between present and past with intoxicating language, visceral action, compelling characters, and stark emotion, The Devourers offers a reading experience quite unlike any other novel.

3.5 Stars

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The Shadow Revolution by Clay and Susan Griffith Audiobook {4 Stars}

The Shadow Revolution by Clay and Susan Griffith is the first in a new steampunk urban fantasy series featuring a hero with some crazy awesome magic, a heroine who isn’t afraid to kick ass, and some really darn creepy bad guys making really creepy monsters! The narration is excellent so if you are looking for your next fun audiobook, I definitely recommend The Shadow Revolution. Also if you hate waiting for sequels, give this series a try because it is on a rapid release schedule so you won’t have to wait!

Note: I received an audiobook copy of The Shadow Revolution from the publisher. Listening to a book significantly changes my reading experience.

The Shadow Revolution by Clay and Susan Griffith Audiobook {4 Stars}

The Shadow Revolution by Clay Griffith, Susan Griffith
Narrated by Nicholas Guy Smith
(Crown & Key #1)
Published by Del Rey on June 2nd, 2015
Genres: Adult, Steampunk, Urban Fantasy
Page Length: 320 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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They are the realm’s last, best defense against supernatural evil. But they’re going to need a lot more silver.
 
As fog descends, obscuring the gas lamps of Victorian London, werewolves prowl the shadows of back alleys. But they have infiltrated the inner circles of upper-crust society as well. Only a handful of specially gifted practitioners are equipped to battle the beasts. Among them are the roguish Simon Archer, who conceals his powers as a spell-casting scribe behind the smooth veneer of a dashing playboy; his layabout mentor, Nick Barker, who prefers a good pub to thrilling heroics; and the self-possessed alchemist Kate Anstruther, who is equally at home in a ballroom as she is on a battlefield.

After a lycanthrope targets Kate’s vulnerable younger sister, the three join forces with fierce Scottish monster-hunter Malcolm MacFarlane—but quickly discover they’re dealing with a threat far greater than anything they ever imagined.

4 Stars

Strengths:
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Uprooted by Naomi Novik eARC {5 Stars}

Uprooted by Naomi Novik took me completely by surprised and I can’t remember the last time I loved a book so much. Uprooted is the story of a girl from a small village who ends up living the not-so-happy fairytales of her childhood, but as long as she has friends and allies on her side, she can take that terrifying Wood! If you are a fan of creepy and dark fairytales, Uprooted is basically a new tale to add to the classics so don’t miss out :D.

Note: I received an advanced copy of Uprooted from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Uprooted by Naomi Novik eARC {5 Stars}

Uprooted by Naomi Novik
Published by Del Rey on May 19th, 2015
Genres: Adult, Fairytale Retelling, Fantasy
Page Length: 448 pages
How I got my copy: Edelweiss
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Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life.

Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood.

The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows—everyone knows—that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn’t, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her.

But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.

5 Stars

Strengths:
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An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir Audiobook {3 Stars}

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir is an interesting addition to the YA fantasy scene with its Roman-inspired dominant culture and use of lesser seen fantasy elements such as jinn and ifrit and crazy living metal masks. An Ember in the Ashes takes advantage of its dual PoV for the audiobook with two strong narrators to tell each side of the story. I know that a lot of people have loved An Ember in the Ashes, and a lot of you will, but it focused on the aspects I am less interested in and ignored the cool fantasy elements sadly.

Note: I received an audiobook copy of An Ember in the Ashes from the publisher. Listening to a book strongly influences my reading experience.

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir Audiobook {3 Stars}

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
Narrated by Fiona Hardingham, Steve West

Published by Del Rey on April 28th, 2015
Genres: Dark Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 443 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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AN EMBER IN THE ASHES is a thought-provoking, heart-wrenching and pulse-pounding read. Set in a rich, high-fantasy world with echoes of ancient Rome, it tells the story of a slave fighting for her family and a young soldier fighting for his freedom.

Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.

Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.

It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

3 Stars

Strengths:
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Hammered by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {3 Stars}

Hammered by Kevin Hearne is the third book in the Iron Druid Chronicles, the story of a very old druid living in the modern world and trying to avoid pissing off too many old gods at one time ;-). There will definitely be spoilers below for those of you who haven’t read Hounded (book one, 4.5 stars!) and Hexed (book two, 3 stars), so feel free to check out those reviews instead just to be safe. For those of you who have read the series, I’m very curious to hear your thoughts on whether I should continue. I had high hopes for Hammered, but it ended up falling fairly flat for me. Since this is now a two-book trend, I’m worried that this just isn’t the series for me :(.

Note: I listened to Hammered on audio, which definitely impacts my reading experience.

Hammered by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {3 Stars}

Hammered by Kevin Hearne
Narrated by Luke Daniels
(Iron Druid Chronicles #3)
Published by Del Rey on July 5th, 2011
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Page Length: 310 pages
How I got my copy: Purchased
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Thor, the Norse god of thunder, is worse than a blowhard and a bully—he’s ruined countless lives and killed scores of innocents. After centuries, Viking vampire Leif Helgarson is ready to get his vengeance, and he’s asked his friend Atticus O’Sullivan, the last of the Druids, to help take down this Norse nightmare.

One survival strategy has worked for Atticus for more than two thousand years: stay away from the guy with the lightning bolts. But things are heating up in Atticus’s home base of Tempe, Arizona. There’s a vampire turf war brewing, and Russian demon hunters who call themselves the Hammers of God are running rampant. Despite multiple warnings and portents of dire consequences, Atticus and Leif journey to the Norse plain of Asgard, where they team up with a werewolf, a sorcerer, and an army of frost giants for an epic showdown against vicious Valkyries, angry gods, and the hammer-wielding Thunder Thug himself.

3 Stars

Strengths:
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Hexed by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {3 Stars}

Hexed by Kevin Hearne is the second book in the Iron Druid Chronicles and tells another story full of old gods, modern day troubles, and one very old druid. Hexed suffered a bit from second-book syndrome since it mostly felt like setup material for the rest of the series, but I still enjoyed myself. The narration for this series is wonderful, but I have to admit being a bit affronted by the “Wisconsin” accent ;-). If you don’t want to be spoiled, feel free to check out my review of book one, Hounded, instead.

This book has adult content.
Hexed by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {3 Stars}

Hexed by Kevin Hearne
Narrated by Luke Daniels
(The Iron Druid Chronicles #2)
Published by Del Rey on June 7th, 2011
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Page Length: 320 pages
How I got my copy: Purchased
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Purchases made support this blog

Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, doesn’t care much for witches. Still, he’s about to make nice with the local coven by signing a mutually beneficial nonaggression treaty—when suddenly the witch population in modern-day Tempe, Arizona, quadruples overnight. And the new girls are not just bad, they’re badasses with a dark history on the German side of World War II.

With a fallen angel feasting on local high school students, a horde of Bacchants blowing in from Vegas with their special brand of deadly decadence, and a dangerously sexy Celtic goddess of fire vying for his attention, Atticus is having trouble scheduling the witch hunt. But aided by his magical sword, his neighbor’s rocket-propelled grenade launcher, and his vampire attorney, Atticus is ready to sweep the town and show the witchy women they picked the wrong Druid to hex.

3 Stars

Strengths:
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Hounded by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {4.5 Stars}

Hounded by Kevin Hearne is a book I’ve been told I must read for over two years, so I finally downloaded the audiobook and I’m so glad I did! The narration by Luke Daniels is one of the best I’ve heard, the urban fantasy world of Hounded is fresh and full of true Celtic origins, and the characters are wonderful and include a very smart Irish Wolfhound that regularly made me laugh while I was driving ;-). If you like audiobooks and urban fantasy, do yourself a favor and get all six currently available Iron Druid Chronicles now!

Hounded by Kevin Hearne Audiobook {4.5 Stars}

Hounded by Kevin Hearne
Narrated by Luke Daniels
(The Iron Druid Chronicles #1)
Published by Del Rey on May 3rd, 2011
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Page Length: 304 pages
How I got my copy: Purchased
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Atticus O'Sullivan, last of the Druids, lives peacefully in Arizona, running an occult bookshop and shape-shifting in his spare time to hunt with his Irish wolfhound. His neighbors and customers think that this handsome, tattooed Irish dude is about twenty-one years old--when in actuality, he's twenty-one "centuries" old. Not to mention: He draws his power from the earth, possesses a sharp wit, and wields an even sharper magical sword known as Fragarach, the Answerer. 
Unfortunately, a very angry Celtic god wants that sword, and he's hounded Atticus for centuries. Now the determined deity has tracked him down, and Atticus will need all his power--plus the help of a seductive goddess of death, his vampire and werewolf team of attorneys, a bartender possessed by a Hindu witch, and some good old-fashioned luck of the Irish--to kick some Celtic arse and deliver himself from evil.

4.5 Stars

Strengths:
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Four Stars: Mercy Thompson: Homecoming by Patricia Briggs

Mercy Thompson: Homecoming is a graphic novel about when Mercy is first visiting the Tri-Cities area. This just happens to be at the same time that the Marrok (head of North American werewolves) has sent Adam Hauptman (Alpha werewolf) and his pack to deal with a rogue pack in the area that has been bad. Between vampires acting out, the werewolf gang war and some really bad luck on the employment front, Mercy just isn’t having a good week…. Makes perfect sense to move-in!

Patricia Briggs is proving just how versatile of an author she is with her foray into graphic novels. She’s doing such a wonderful job building up the world that Mercy Thompson and the companion series, Alpha and Omega, take place in, and it rocks! When I saw Homecoming available for $6 at the local Meijer, I had to grab it for the pretty pictures alone :D. Better yet, it’s an original (short) story that tells of how Mercy and Adam actually came to live in the Tri-Cities area. Fun fact: Mercy wanted to be a history teacher! Look how that turned out, haha!

Mercy Thompson: Homecoming by Patricia Briggs

Goodreads | Amazon
Title:
Mercy Thompson: Homecoming
Author: Patricia Briggs, David Lawrence
Illustrator: Francis Tsai, Amelia Woo
Pages: 168
Genre-ish: Urban Fantasy graphic novel!
Rating: ★★★★☆– Really fun, minor turn-offs
Setting: All of the Mercy Thompson series, including Mercy Thompson: Homecoming, are set in an alternate US where werewolves, fae, vampires and coyote shifters all exist. The fae came out of hiding several years ago and the humans have mostly dealt with that shock, and everyone in the supernatural community knows that vampires and werewolves exist. Shifters, however, are thought to be extinct, making Mercy a bit of a spectacle even for a supe.
Premise: A gang of rogue werewolves has been attacking humans in the area that Mercy Thompson also happens to be interviewing for a teaching position. When she’s just out for a nice run (in coyote form) this rogue pack just has to come looking for a snack. Fortunately, a much more responsible pack has been sent over to take care of the situation, and they are able to save Mercy. This convinces the Marrok who also happens to be Mercy’s foster father, however, that she should not be in the area which causes Mercy to respond by getting a job as a mechanic instead. Now if only this gang war would leave her along, everything would be peachy.

 

Strengths:

  • Mercy has always been a really strong and fun character and Mercy Thompson: Homecoming is no exception. She has a tendency to pick fights she has no hope of winning due to her honor, standing up to the most powerful werewolf in North America simply because his orders annoy her, and going out to dinner with vampires.
  • Generally I am a big fan of the artwork of the various characters. Zee, Mercy’s fae boss, wasn’t how I had pictured him; he was better. Stefan, the vampire who is a huge Scooby Do fan, had a wonderfully painted VW bus and Adam had some pretty fine moments ;-).
  • Prequel stories are always so much fun when you know what ends up happening with the characters and get to giggle at their interactions. It was an awesome moment when Adam realized he had bought a house next door to Mercy. Also, Mercy’s desire to teach history explains her various book researching adventures in the series very well.

Weaknesses:

  • Apparently they switched artists part way through the development, which is clear looking at some of the pages, but didn’t really bother me. What did both me is that the second artist drew Mercy much more sexually and I just didn’t like those panels as much. Mercy isn’t supposed to be that sexual; she’s covered in motor oil half the time!
  • Shape-shifting tends to leave people without their clothes on, which is fine in a novel since you don’t really picture that detail much (or at least I don’t, haha), and Briggs made a great decision to keep that realism element in Mercy Thompson: Homecoming. This does mean, however, that there is a fair amount of female skin showing throughout the novel. No actual full frontal nudity, but plenty of scenes with conveniently positioned arms and legs with everything else showing. Just a warning not to let small children read it and to be careful who can peek over your shoulder.
  • The first two chapters have a really weird transition that heavily confused me until Briggs resolved it with a memory scene. Basically, they jump forward in time and skip a significant encounter and then go back to describe it. I really didn’t like it; it seemed unnecessarily confusing, but I’m hoping that by telling you, you will be less confused.

Summary:
Graphic novels are a really fun edition to a novel series and Mercy Thompson: Homecoming is no exception. You get a combination of a new prequel storyline and really pretty art! What could be better? It’s obviously a very fast read because it’s so short, but you should definitely be prepared for PG-13 artwork and bad guys. Anyone who has been enjoying the Mercy Thompson series so far should definitely pick it up or borrow Mercy Thompson: Homecoming.

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-A
Anya from About The StorySimilar Stories Reviewed:
Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs – If you haven’t read the series, you should, it rocks.
Fair Game by Patricia Briggs – I also highly recommend the spin-off series: Alpha and Omega, of which Fair Game s the latest

Mercy Thompson: Homecoming by Patricia Briggs