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The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden ARC {5 Stars}

The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden ARC {5 Stars}

The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden
Published by Harper Voyager on June 13th, 2017
Genres: Adult, Genre-bender, Sci-fi
Page Length: 400 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

In South Africa, the future looks promising. Personal robots are making life easier for the working class. The government is harnessing renewable energy to provide infrastructure for the poor. And in the bustling coastal town of Port Elizabeth, the economy is booming thanks to the genetic engineering industry which has found a welcome home there. Yes—the days to come are looking very good for South Africans. That is, if they can survive the present challenges:

A new hallucinogenic drug sweeping the country . . .
An emerging AI uprising . . .
And an ancient demigoddess hellbent on regaining her former status by preying on the blood and sweat (but mostly blood) of every human she encounters.

It’s up to a young Zulu girl powerful enough to destroy her entire township, a queer teen plagued with the ability to control minds, a pop diva with serious daddy issues, and a politician with even more serious mommy issues to band together to ensure there’s a future left to worry about.

5 Stars

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

Strengths:
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Nine of Stars by Laura Bickle {4.5 Stars}

Nine of Stars by Laura Bickle {4.5 Stars}

Nine of Stars by Laura Bickle (Dark Alchemy #3)
Published by Harper Voyager on Dec. 27th, 2016
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Western Fantasy
Page Length: 384 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Winter is the most deadly season in Temperance. And it’s not just because of the fierce cold. Evil is stalking the backcountry of Yellowstone, killing wolves and leaving only their skins behind.

As the snow deepens, Geologist Petra Dee is staring her own death in the face, while former Hanged Man Gabriel struggles with his abrupt transition back to mortality. The ravens and the rest of the Hanged Men are gone, and there are no magical solutions to Petra’s illness or Gabriel’s longing for what he’s lost…and what he stands to lose now.

Meanwhile, there’s a new sheriff in town. Sheriff Owen Rutherford has inherited the Rutherford ranch and the remnants of the Alchemical Tree of Life. He’s also a dangerously haunted man, and his investigation of Sal’s death is leading him right to Gabriel.

It’s up to Petra, her coyote sidekick Sig, and Gabriel to get ahead of both Owen and the unnatural being stalking them all – before the trail turns deathly cold.

4.5 Stars

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

Strengths:
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A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers {5 Stars}

Becky Chambers has done a superb job in writing this unique, engaging, and entertaining sequel to The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet (spoilers for Angry Planet after this!).  Set in the same rich, multispecies universe, the action picks up just after the end of the previous book and follows the development of Lovelace, the rebooted AI of the Wayfarer, who decides to leave the ship in a highly-illegal simulated body.  Her journey of self-discovery and growth (while trying to avoid detection) is paralleled by that of a young escaped clone, Jane 23, who must rebuild a shuttle in order to flee the planet where she was kept as part of a slave work force.

The struggles of both sentients for self-determination and freedom kept me turning pages even as the philsophy student in me delighted to have found one of those special science fiction series that characterize the best of this genre – raising questions about ethics and the definition of personhood while spinning a good yarn in a detailed, vast, and complex universe.  Brava!!

A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers {5 Stars}

A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers (Wayfarers #2)
Published by Harper Voyager on October 18, 2016
Genres: Adult, Sci-fi
Page Length: 365 pages
How I got my copy: Purchased
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Lovelace was once merely a ship's artificial intelligence. When she wakes up in an new body, following a total system shut-down and reboot, she has no memory of what came before. As Lovelace learns to negotiate the universe and discover who she is, she makes friends with Pepper, an excitable engineer, who's determined to help her learn and grow.

Together, Pepper and Lovey will discover that no matter how vast space is, two people can fill it together.

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet introduced readers to the incredible world of Rosemary Harper, a young woman with a restless soul and secrets to keep. When she joined the crew of the Wayfarer, an intergalactic ship, she got more than she bargained for - and learned to live with, and love, her rag-tag collection of crewmates.

A Closed and Common Orbit is the stand-alone sequel to Becky Chambers' beloved debut novel The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet and is perfect for fans of Firefly, Joss Whedon, Mass Effect and Star Wars.

5 Stars

Strengths:
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The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers {5 Stars}

In both history and science-fiction, I have always been drawn to discussions about what the life of an average person would be like.  While the shining knights of both Star Wars and Star Trek catch our eyes, I often wondered what it would be like to be the average Joe or Jane who simply has a routine job on a space ship or space station.  I think that’s why Firefly and Babylon 5 (and yes, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) had such loyal fan bases.  We want to experience vicariously not only the glitter of the space faring elite but also the day-to-day experiences of average Humans doing their jobs alongside alien races far, far from home.

If this sort of book interests you, do yourself a favor and not only get this book but pre-order the sequel that is scheduled for October!!  Trust me, when you finish The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet, you’ll be glad you have the next volume reserved.

Note: I received an advanced copy of THE LONG WAY TO A SMALL, ANGRY PLANET from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers {5 Stars}

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers (Wayfarers #1)
Published by Harper Voyager on July 5th 2016 (rerelease)
Genres: Adult, Sci-fi
Page Length: 443 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Follow a motley crew on an exciting journey through space—and one adventurous young explorer who discovers the meaning of family in the far reaches of the universe—in this light-hearted debut space opera from a rising sci-fi star.

Rosemary Harper doesn’t expect much when she joins the crew of the aging Wayfarer. While the patched-up ship has seen better days, it offers her a bed, a chance to explore the far-off corners of the galaxy, and most importantly, some distance from her past. An introspective young woman who learned early to keep to herself, she’s never met anyone remotely like the ship’s diverse crew, including Sissix, the exotic reptilian pilot, chatty engineers Kizzy and Jenks who keep the ship running, and Ashby, their noble captain.

Life aboard the Wayfarer is chaotic and crazy—exactly what Rosemary wants. It’s also about to get extremely dangerous when the crew is offered the job of a lifetime. Tunneling wormholes through space to a distant planet is definitely lucrative and will keep them comfortable for years. But risking her life wasn’t part of the plan. In the far reaches of deep space, the tiny Wayfarer crew will confront a host of unexpected mishaps and thrilling adventures that force them to depend on each other. To survive, Rosemary’s got to learn how to rely on this assortment of oddballs—an experience that teaches her about love and trust, and that having a family isn’t necessarily the worst thing in the universe.

5 Stars

Strengths:
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The Perdition Score by Richard Kadrey eARC {3.5 Stars}

The Perdition Score, book #8 of the Sandman Slim series, delivers everything we’ve come to expect from the series: fast action, a wise-cracking hero, paranormal romance, and bad guys that clearly deserve to lose in a spectacular and violent fashion.  The usual cast of characters are back, along with a few that haven’t graced the page in a bit, and a few new faces freshen up the formula a tad.  Fans will enjoy the continuing adventures of a guy who keeps trying to do the right thing without much encouragement or reward for saving the world …. again.

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

The Perdition Score by Richard Kadrey eARC {3.5 Stars}

The Perdition Score by Richard Kadrey (Sandman Slim #8)
Published by Harper Voyager on June 28, 2016
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Page Length: 320 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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Purchases made support this blog

The request from Thomas Abbot, the Augur of the Sub Rosa council, couldn’t come at a better time for James Stark, aka Sandman Slim. For a man who’s most recently met Death—and death’s killer—a few months of normal life is more than he can handle. He needs a little action, and now Abbott wants Stark and Candy to investigate the disappearance of a young boy—and help uncover council members who might be tied to Wormwood’s power brokers.

Stark’s plans change when he meets a dying angel who gives him a vial of a mysterious black liquid that could be a secret weapon in the ongoing war between angels who want to allow human souls into Heaven and rebel angels willing to die to keep them out. When one of Stark’s closest friends is poisoned with the black liquid, Stark and Candy have to go to the only place where they might find a cure: Hell.

But standing in their way are the damned souls who, even after death, still work for Wormwood. The secret deal they’ve struck with the rebel angels is darker than anything Stark has encountered. Not only does the fate of the world hang in the balance, but also the souls of everyone in it. Stark has to find a way to break the stalemate in the angel war, score the Perdition cure for the black poison, and make it back to LA in one piece—where an old enemy waits to finish him once and for all.

3.5 Stars

Strengths:
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In the Shadow of Bound Gods by Rachel Dunne {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.

In the Shadow of the Gods by Rachel Dunne promises to be an epic fantasy on the darker side, but with anti-heroes that win over your heart despite themselves. I’m a sucker for dead god premises, so I am definitely intrigued right from the start.

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

In the Shadow of Bound Gods by Rachel Dunne {Just Hatched}

In the Shadow of the Gods by Rachel Dunne (Bound Gods #1)
Published by Harper Voyager on June 21st, 2016
Genres: Adult, Dark Fantasy
Page Length: 400 pages
How I got my copy: Edelweiss
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

A breathtaking talent makes her debut with this first book in a dark epic fantasy trilogy, in which a mismatched band of mortals, led by violent, secretive man, must stand against a pair of resentful gods to save their world.

Eons ago, a pair of gods known as the “Twins” grew powerful in the world of Fiatera, until the Divine Mother and Almighty Father exiled them, binding them deep in the earth. But the price of keeping the fire-lands safe is steep. To prevent these young gods from rising again, all twins in the land must be killed at birth, a safeguard that has worked, until now.

Trapped for centuries, the Twins are gathering their latent powers to break free and destroy the Parents for their tyranny—a fight between two generations of gods for control of the world and the mortals who dwell in it.

When the gods make war, only one side can be victorious. Joros, a mysterious and cunning priest, has devised a dangerous plan to win. Over eight years, he gathers a team of disparate fighters—Scal, a lost and damaged swordsman from the North; Vatri, a scarred priestess who claims to see the future in her fires; Anddyr, a drug-addled mage wandering between sanity and madness; and Rora and Aro, a pair of twins who have secretly survived beyond the reach of the law.

These warriors must learn to stand together against the unfathomable power of vengeful gods, to stop them from tearing down the sun . . . and plunging their world into darkness.

3.5 Stars

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Woodwalker by Emily B. Martin {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.

Woodwalker by Emily B. Martin is a story about a young woman with a special connection to the forest she swore to protect and a queen to help. From first impressions, Woodwalker seems like a pretty straight forward fantasy adventure with a plucky heroine, a bit of interesting magic, and a queendom in need of saving.

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

Woodwalker by Emily B. Martin {Just Hatched}

Woodwalker by Emily B. Martin
Published by Harper Voyager on May 17th, 2016
Genres: Adult, Fantasy
Page Length: 336 pages
How I got my copy: Edelweiss
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

“What on earth would I gain from that?” I asked him. “Risk my own neck by violating my banishment just to leave you? The sentence placed on me if I return is execution. If I’m entering the mountains again, I’d damn well better get something out of it.”

Exiled from the Silverwood and the people she loves, Mae has few illusions about ever returning to her home. But when she comes across three out-of-place strangers in her wanderings, she finds herself contemplating the unthinkable: risking death to help a deposed queen regain her throne.

And if anyone can help Mona Alastaire of Lumen Lake, it is a former Woodwalker—a ranger whose very being is intimately tied to the woods they are sworn to protect. Mae was once one of the best, and despite the potential of every tree limb to become the gibbet she’s hung from, she not only feels a duty to aide Mona and her brothers, but also to walk beneath her beloved trees once more.

A grand quest in the tradition of great epic fantasies, filled with adventure and the sharp wit—and tongue—of a unique hero,Woodwalker is the perfect novel to start your own journey into the realm of magical fiction.

2 Stars

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Elixir by Ruth Vincent {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.

Elixir by Ruth Vincent is a new urban fantasy series with a twist. Mabily is a quieter heroine than you usually find in this genre and she seems to be living the typical 20-something life of finishing her education and trying to find a job and make a difference. I’m definitely excited to get back and finish this one and recommend you give it a look!

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

Elixir by Ruth Vincent {Just Hatched}

Elixir by Ruth Vincent (A Changeling PI Novel #1)
Published by Harper Voyager on May 3rd, 2016
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Page Length: 384 pages
How I got my copy: Edelweiss
Amazon - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Mabily “Mab” Jones is just a twenty-something, over-educated, under-employed New Yorker trying to survive as a private eye’s unpaid intern . . . or is she? Once a powerful fairy, but tricked by the Fairy Queen into human form, Mab is forced to face her changeling past when investigating a missing person case at a modern speakeasy.

Obadiah Savage bootlegs fairy Elixir to human customers thirsting for a magical fix. But when Mab and Obadiah become joint suspects in a crime they didn’t commit, the only way to prove their innocence is to travel back to the fairy realm. And when Mab confronts the Fairy Queen and learns the depth of her betrayal, she must decide if the fate of the fey world is worth destroying the lives of the humans she’s come to love.

4 Stars

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Dissension by Stacey Berg {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.

Dissension by Stacey Berg is a sci-fi dystopian that takes the dystopia idea to the max with a realistic portrayal of how society might attempt to endure. Add on a same-sex romance and a kick-butt heroine and I can’t recommend this enough. I will definitely be reading the rest asap.

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

Dissension by Stacey Berg {Just Hatched}

Dissension by Stacey Berg (Echo Hunter 367 #1)
Published by Harper Voyager on March 15th, 2016
Genres: Adult, Dystopia, Sci-fi
Page Length: 384 pages
How I got my copy: Edelweiss
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

For four hundred years, the Church has led the remnants of humanity as they struggle for survival in the last inhabited city. Echo Hunter 367 is exactly what the Church created her to be: loyal, obedient, lethal. A clone who shouldn’t care about anything but her duty. Who shouldn’t be able to.

When rebellious citizens challenge the Church’s authority, it is Echo’s duty to hunt them down before civil war can tumble the city back into the dark. But Echo hides a deadly secret: doubt. And when Echo’s mission leads her to Lia, a rebel leader who has a secret of her own, Echo is forced to face that doubt. For Lia holds the key to the city’s survival, and Echo must choose between the woman she loves and the purpose she was born to fulfill.

4.5 Stars

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Killing Pretty by Richard Kadrey ARC {4.5 Stars}

This fun, quick read combines genres of the hard-boiled detective genre with an alternate-universe fantasy that reminded me strongly of Constantine (the TV show) mashed up with The Dresden Files with an off-the-wall world building reminiscent of Supernatural, but a lot less grim.  Our hero, Stark, has had a colorful life … in fact, several lives … and the weird just keeps on coming through this seventh book of the Sandman Slim series in which the Angel of Death shows up needing his help.  As clients go, Death isn’t so bad, and who wouldn’t want him to owe you a big, fat favor??

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

Killing Pretty by Richard Kadrey ARC {4.5 Stars}

Killing Pretty by Richard Kadrey (Sandman Slim #7)
Published by Harper Voyager on July 28th 2015
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Genre-bender, Mystery
Page Length: 416 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Someone has tried to kill Death—ripping the heart right out of him—or rather the body he's inhabiting. Death needs Sandman Slim's help. He believes anyone who can beat Lucifer and the old gods at their own game is the only one who can solve his murder.

Stark follows a sordid trail deep into LA's subterranean world, from vampire-infested nightclubs to Weimar Republic mystical societies. Along the way he meets a mysterious girl—distinguished by a pair of graveyard eyes—as badass as Slim; she happens to be the only person who ever outwitted Death. But escaping her demise has had dire consequences for the rest of the world... and a few others.

4.5 Stars

Strengths:
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