Cover Lover – Shards of Hope

So, yesterday I had my annual run-away-from-home, based around going to get my copies of Archangel’s Shadows and Burn For Me. Unfortunately, Burn For Me was not available…which sucked big time. Thank god for the i-pad, because I wasn’t long downloading that sucker. Anyways, I stumble home only to find that the cover for the next Nalini Singh Psy/Changeling book Shards of Hope, had been released. That is a nice treat, for sure. Now we just have to wait until June 2nd for Aden’s story.

shards of hope

November’s Book of the Month…

After the big, big month for great releases that was October, November is shaping up to not be too bad, either. My own personal favorite is Night Shift, the anthology featuring both Ilona Andrews and Nalini Singh. A Jim and Dali AND Bastien story in the same book? Sold. Or, my favorite Lord of the Underworld, Torin? Yep, a close second.

Anyways, it is time again to vote for your most anticipated book for November. The title with the most votes will then be the next giveaway book. I have listed 10 upcoming releases, but as always if your choice isn’t there just select “Other” and leave your pick in the comments section. A complete list of November’s releases can be found HERE.

New Series Alerts…

Wow, this is a big, big week on the new release front, both os the adult and young adult sides. Let’s start with the biggie…Ilona AndrewsBurn For Me. It is the first book of at least three in the Hidden Legacy series.

burn for meSynopsis…

Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Also coming out this week is Love Me to Death by Marissa Clark. It is the first book of the Underveil series.

love me to deathSynopsis…

Medical research scientist Elena Arcos has always lived her life under the radar, which is not easy to do when you live with the craziest woman in the world. But eccentric Aunt Uza is a picnic compared to the other people who enter her orderly life after she is shot in a convenience store robbery.

Elena finds herself rocketed from comfortable predictability to supernatural insanity courtesy of her own private angel of death who happens to have the sexiest accent on earth and a body to match. Her death angel is convinced she’s some kind of freaky half vampire thing and that her deceased dad was the real deal: a blood sucking monster. Yeah, right. She’ll play along, but then she doesn’t have much choice seeing how as the guy claims to be some immortal law enforcer and has taken her prisoner.

Nikolai Itzov had expected to fight the urge to torture the progeny of his father’s murderer, but he’d never anticipated battling the urge to kiss her her. As a Slayer, an elite law enforcer descended from Azrael himself, his charge from the Underveil General is clear: Kill her or die. He has been told she is one of them–an Undead. Nothing but a parasite to be destroyed. But he has been told wrong.

Nikolai and Elena find themselves in a life and death battle to stop a plot designed to lift the Underveil and enslave humans. With her analytical mind and his centuries of training and experience, they might be able to foil the plot with their lives and maybe their hearts intact. But in order to succeed, he must help her become the very thing he hates the most: an Undead.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Also starting up this week is the Hellhound Chronicles from Caitlin Kittredge. The first book is called Black Dog.

black dogSynopsis…

The first installment in a fabulous dark urban fantasy series—think Kill Bill with demons and gangsters instead of martial arts—from the award-winning author of the Iron Codex trilogy and Vertigo comic Coffin Hill.

Ava has spent the last hundred years as a hellhound, the indentured servant of a reaper who hunts errant souls and sends them to Hell. When a human necromancer convinces her to steal her reaper’s scythe, Ava incurs the wrath of the demon Lilith, her reaper’s boss.

As punishment for her transgression, Lilith orders Ava to track down the last soul in her reaper’s ledger . . . or die trying.

But after a hundred years of servitude, it’s time for payback. And Hell hath no fury like an avenging Ava.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Ally Condie also starts up a new young adult series this week. Atlantia is the first book of the new Rio series.

atlantiaSynopsis…

Can you hear Atlantia breathing?

For as long as she can remember, Rio has dreamt of the sand and sky Above—of life beyond her underwater city of Atlantia. But in a single moment, all her plans for the future are thwarted when her twin sister, Bay, makes an unexpected decision, stranding Rio Below. Alone, ripped away from the last person who knew Rio’s true self—and the powerful siren voice she has long hidden—she has nothing left to lose.

Guided by a dangerous and unlikely mentor, Rio formulates a plan that leads to increasingly treacherous questions about her mother’s death, her own destiny, and the complex system constructed to govern the divide between land and sea. Her life and her city depend on Rio to listen to the voices of the past and to speak long-hidden truths.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Also new this week is Earth and Sky from Megan Crewe. It is the first book of the Earth and Sky series.

earth and skySynopsis…

Seventeen-year-old Skylar has always been haunted by fleeting yet powerful feelings that something around her has gone wrong. Those impressions have never seemed to reflect anything real, and have only earned her stares and whispers behind her back. But after she meets a mysterious boy named Win, she learns an unsettling truth: we are not alone on Earth. In fact, visitors from beyond the stars are manipulating our planet and the essential fabric of our world; life as we know it is starting to unravel. And Skylar—and her heightened awareness—just may be the key to our salvation.

Purchase at Amazon.com

And finally, we have Talon from Julie Kagawa. It is the first book of the young adult Talon series.

9780373211395.inddSynopsis…

In Julie Kagawa’s groundbreaking modern fantasy series, dragons walk among us in human form.

Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they’re positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser.

Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George.

Soldier Garret St. James has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon’s newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey—and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember’s bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him—and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Well, there is a lot to choose from this week. Which ones are you most excited for?

This and That…

Just a little bit of random book info…

  • If you were a fan of the recent C.L. Wilson release The Winter King, there is another book on the way called The Sea King. As of right now, it is scheduled for release on July 28th…

From the author of THE WINTER KING comes a breathtaking new tale of love and adventure, set in the mystical land of Mystral.

Summer Coruscate has grown up the daughter of royalty, a Princess of the Rose and a weathermage, but over the past three years of war, Summerlea has been rendered a shadow of its former self. Now, after the joining of her younger sister Khamsin and the Winter King in marriage, her kingdom is finally at peace.

A Calbernan warrior and seafarer, Dilys Merimydion has always possessed the ability to control the animals of the sea and uses their sight to chart his way through the dark, sometimes savage waters.

As she does it best, C.L. Wilson weaves a tale of war, love, and desire that will take you on a journey to lands many only dream of.

  • There has been some new info coming out about Karen Marie Moning‘s Fever series. Burned was originally to be the second book in the Dani O’Malley arc, followed by Flayed. Well, Burned is now told mostly from Mac’s POV, and Flayed is cancelled altogether. Fever #8 will be called Feverborn, and #9 is Feversong, and both as of right now are looking like a 2016 release. There will be at least one more book after that, as well. Not sure how I like that, changing in mid-stream and all, but we will see how it goes.
  • Both Larissa Ione and Lara Adrian are contributing a second title to the continuing 1001 Dark Nights series. Larissa’s next story will be Demonica #11.5 and features Hades, and it is due out on May 26th. Lara’s next installment will be called Stroke of Midnight, and it will be out next October 13th. Has anyone checked this series out yet? I was surprised to see just how many there are planned for the 1001 Dark Nights, and the variety of genres covered. Even Jennifer L. Armentrout has one coming up called Dream of You, which is part of her Wait for You contemporary romance series.
  • There isn’t any info out as yet, but J.R. Ward‘s first Bourbon Kings novel does now have a release date of July 28th.

That looks like it for today. Hopefully more info to come.

Cover Lover – Magic Shifts

My last post was the recently released blurb for Magic Shifts by Ilona Andrews, and so I figured that it would be it for a while. Imagine my surprise when I got home from work tonight and saw the cover had been released. I found a few more new covers, too, but they can wait until a later post. Behold, Magic Shifts, which will be released next August 4th.

magic shiftsPurchase at Amazon.com

There has been a change in cover model, which actually doesn’t bother me as long as the basic feel of a cover stays the same throughout a series. I am liking this one, and the greenish tones will stand out well on the shelf.

 

Magic Shifts Blurb…

Last week, we got our hands on the title and blurb for the upcoming Nalini Singh book, Shards of Hope. Well, this week it looks like the blurb for Ilona AndrewsMagic Shifts has gone public (well, maybe it was around before and I missed it). But once again, if you are not up to date on the Kate Daniels series…BEWARE!

spoiler banner

You have been warned…

In the latest Kate Daniels novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews, magic is coming and going in waves in post-Shift Atlanta—and each crest leaves danger in its wake…

After breaking from life with the Pack, mercenary Kate Daniels and her mate—former Beast Lord Curran Lennart—are adjusting to a very different pace. While they’re thrilled to escape all the infighting, Curran misses the constant challenges of leading the shapeshifters.

So when the Pack offers him its stake in the Mercenary Guild, Curran seizes the opportunity—too bad the Guild wants nothing to do with him and Kate. Luckily, as a veteran merc, Kate can take over any of the Guild’s unfinished jobs in order to bring in money and build their reputation. But what Kate and Curran don’t realize is that the odd jobs they’ve been working are all connected.

An ancient enemy has arisen, and Kate and Curran are the only ones who can stop it—before it takes their city apart piece by piece…

There have been a few snippets posted over on Ilona’s blog, and unlike Magic Breaks it looks like this one is going to be Curran-heavy. Nice. And can you imagine what Jim is up to? Anyways, I don’t consider a release date official until Amazon has them up for pre-order, and in the last couple of days it has put up the links for both Shards of Hope (June 2nd) and Magic Breaks (August 4th). Let the count-downs begin.

New Series Alert…

There are just two new young adult series firing up this week, and the first one comes from author Karen Akins. Loop is the first book of the series of the same name.

loopSynopsis…

At a school where Quantum Paradox 101 is a required course and history field trips are literal, sixteen year-old time traveler Bree Bennis excels…at screwing up.

After Bree botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage (a teensy snafu), she stands to lose her scholarship. But when Bree sneaks back to talk the kid into keeping his yap shut, she doesn’t go back far enough. The boy, Finn, now three years older and hot as a solar flare, is convinced he’s in love with Bree, or rather, a future version of her that doesn’t think he’s a complete pain in the arse. To make matters worse, she inadvertently transports him back to the 23rd century with her.

Once home, Bree discovers that a recent rash of accidents at her school are anything but accidental. Someone is attacking time travelers. As Bree and her temporal tagalong uncover seemingly unconnected clues—a broken bracelet, a missing data file, the art heist of the millennium—that lead to the person responsible, she alone has the knowledge to piece the puzzle together. Knowledge only one other person has. Her future self.

But when those closest to her become the next victims, Bree realizes the attacker is willing to do anything to stop her. In the past, present, or future.

Purchase at Amazon.com

This second one is from author Vicki Leigh. Catch Me When I Fall is the first book of the new Dreamcatcher series, and it will be released on October 23rd.

catch me when I fallSynopsis…

Recruited at his death to be a Protector of the Night, seventeen-year-old Daniel Graham has spent two-hundred years fighting Nightmares and guarding humans from the clawed, red-eyed creatures that feed off people’s fears. Each night, he risks his eternal life, having given up his chance at an afterlife when he chose to become a Protector. That doesn’t stop a burnt-out Daniel from risking daring maneuvers during each battle. He’s become one of the best, but he wants nothing more than to stop.

Then he’s given an assignment to watch over sixteen-year-old Kayla Bartlett, a clinically depressed patient in a psychiatric ward. Nightmares love a human with a tortured past. Yet, when they take a deep interest in her, appearing in unprecedented numbers, the job becomes more dangerous than any Daniel’s ever experienced. He fights ruthlessly to keep the Nightmares from overwhelming his team and Kayla. Soon, Daniel finds himself watching over Kayla during the day, drawn to why she’s different, and what it is about her that attracts the Nightmares. And him.

A vicious attack on Kayla forces Daniel to break the first Law and reveal his identity. Driven by his growing feelings for her, he whisks her away to Rome where others like him can keep her safe. Under their roof, the Protectors discover what Kayla is and why someone who can manipulate Nightmares has her in his sights. But before they can make a move, the Protectors are betrayed and Kayla is kidnapped. Daniel will stop at nothing to save her. Even if it means giving up his immortality.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Have you picked up any new series recently? I am still chugging my way through the Women of the Otherworld series by Kelley Armstrong, and haven’t actually tried any newbies lately at all.

Review: Seventh Grave and No Body

Thanks once again to Doug Meeks, who sent over his review of another much anticipated October release – Seventh Grave and No Body by Darynda Jones. Now, anyone who has read Sixth Grave On The Edge knows that it ended with quite the unexpected development. To those who have not read it yet…PROCEED NO FURTHER! Warning!

spoiler bannerseventh graveWhat Doug said…

WARNING!!!!! If you have NOT read Sixth Grave on the Edge then STOP reading, this will be a spoiler that you don’t want to read.

Now that I have your attention I should mention that you do not want to read the synopsis of book 8 either until you finish this book

OK, on the last page of Sixth Grave on the Edge we find out that our favorite Grim Reaper Charley is pregnant (which kinda came as a surprise to everyone), in this book keep herself and the baby alive have become a primary mission for Reyes(and Charley to a somewhat lesser extent it seems at times). 12 hellhounds have been released from Hell and they want Charley, Reyes does not know how to kill them (and neither does anyone else), add to this plot, Charley’s Dad is missing, add to that people who are writing suicide notes but leaving no body (hence the title). It is a real party for Charley and crew.

While Reyes would like nothing better than to lock her in her apartment with him as 24 hour guard, Charley is having none of it because she will go crazy if she even tries. Unfortunately, it does lead to some moments of TSTL for Charley which does not really help her cause.

A newswoman is getting a bit too close to Reyes for her comfort and jealously looks bad on almost anyone, Charley is no exception. Reyes wants her to stay away from the newswoman because he feels something is “not right” about her but when it comes to scummy reporters how do you tell.

I can tell you that I laugh more at this book than the last one which I thought was hilarious, the beauty is that Darynda Jones manages to do this without taking the edge off of the serious parts of this book, takes a clever touch to accomplish that piece of writing.

There are several surprises in this book, a couple are held to the last chapter, you will have a few questions that obviously are not going to get answered until next book.

The overarching story is for all practical purposes being serialized and while i have no problem with that it DOES mean that you cannot even read the synopsis for future books or you WILL get some spoilers that should be discovered while reading the book.

Bottom Line: This is a 5 Star novel, I will subtract a half a star just because I already knew a big spoiler just from reading the synopsis for the next book Eighth Grave After Dark. Still you gotta get this but again, books 6-7-8 look like they HAVE to be read in order or you will not be able to appreciate them as much as previous novels (which still should be read in order but was not a 100% requirement). There are a couple of quick plots that Charley takes care of that add to the entertainment level of this book. So 4.5 Stars and highly recommended.

I just ordered my copy, so I have a bit of a wait…and I just remembered that I still need to update the character guide for the previous book, too. Crap.

Burn For Me Review

I don’t think anyone who stumbles across this blog has missed the fact that I am super looking forward to Ilona AndrewsBurn For Me. Ever since I heard that there was a new series in the works from them, I have been excited, and the brief teasers and snippets that have been released have justified that excitement. Well, while we have just under two weeks to wait, Doug Meeks got his hands on an early copy and was kind enough to share his review.

burn for meWhat Doug said…

Ok, let me start by just saying it was freaking awesome, if you are surprised by this this must be your first novel by Ilona Andrews (or you are terribly slow)

This is a world similar to our own but different due to magical powers being discovered during the 1700/1800 period which has changed the course of the world drastically in places and less so in others. The magical world is broken up into “Houses” which kind of divide up almost any chunk of real estate (in this case it is Houston).

Nevada Baylor runs her own private investigations company and prides herself on having some honor and client loyalty, a trait not as in demand as you might think which is part of the reason her company is mortgaged to the hilt to one of the “houses” which plays into the plot in them being able to assign her a case she is most likely to fail if not die in the process. The person they want her to bring in is a magical person with pyromaniac tendencies and he is powerful.

Enter Mad Rogan, scourge of Mexico (they will tell you why) and arrogant and self centered as they come because he is one of the most powerful magical beings on the planet, I won’t bore you with how they get together (read the book) but they are NOT a match made in heaven or any place else but their evolving relationship is entertaining beyond belief. I wondered several times if I should go back and read book 1 of Kate Daniels and see if Curran was this bad when they first met.

The crux of the plot (outside of any romance or lack thereof between Nevada and Mad Rogan) is that her assigned target for capture can set almost anything on fire and has plans to do exactly that a LOT more and they have to stop him somehow. Throw in some near death experiences (USUALLY a good ice breaker for a romance) and some magical discoveries, this is an exciting story that never really allows you to get bored other than possibly the reader being more forgiving of Mad Rogan than Nevada is, although it should be mentioned she has valid reasons. (Suspecting him of government sanctioned mass murder ranks high on the list)

This is a story you are never quite sure where it is going and trying to guess will only make your head hurt. Excellent job of hiding some things until the epilogue, imagine my surprise, very nice touch. Never saw it coming at all.

Bottom Line: Exceptional story, multi-layered plot, intriguing characters that you really want to see more of, add all that to some nice little perks for veterans and you have a story that is hard to beat with enough similarity to our own world to make you feel at home just a bit (well a small bit minus the magic). 5 Stars, highly recommended which is actually more than I think I gave the first Kate Daniels book (but to be fair she had a horrible job of building a totally new world we had never seen). So go buy this book as soon as you can, no cliffhangers either I should mention.

Who else is on board for this one? It is my most anticipated read for the rest of the year, and most of the reviews I am allowing myself to peek at are overwhelmingly positive. Did I mention less than two weeks now?

Psy-Changeling and Charley Davidson Blurbs…

So, I spent the last 12 hours adding titles to the new release pages, updating all of the covers and blurbs on them, and double-checking all of the new release dates (which are all correct, according to Amazon, as of today). Imagine my surprise when I decided to pull my head up and find info on both the next Psy-Changeling book, and the eighth Charley Davidson book. Beauty.

First up, Nalini Singh has announced the title of Aden’s book will be Shards of Hope, and…and…the blurb…

Awakening wounded in a darkened cell, their psychic abilities blocked, Aden and Zaira know they must escape. But when the lethal soldiers break free from their mysterious prison, they find themselves in a harsh, inhospitable landscape far from civilization. Their only hope for survival is to make it to the hidden home of a predatory changeling pack that doesn’t welcome outsiders.

And they must survive. A shadowy enemy has put a target on the back of the Arrow squad, an enemy that cannot be permitted to succeed in its deadly campaign. Aden will cross any line to keep his people safe for this new future, where even an assassin might have hope of a life beyond blood and death and pain. Zaira has no such hope. She knows she’s too damaged to return from the abyss. Her driving goal is to protect Aden, protect the only person who has ever come back for her no matter what.

This time, even Aden’s passionate determination may not be enough—because the emotionless chill of Silence existed for a reason. For the violent, and the insane, and the irreparably broken…like Zaira.

Dammit, I don’t remember Zaira! Calm myself, this is why I am an OCD nerd who made a character guide. Yes. According to, well, me…

Zaira – Psy

  • first appearance in Tangle of Need
  • defected Arrow
  • born in Jordan
  • raised in an Arrow training facility in Turkey
  • believed to be lost in action 5 years ago
  • presumed dead
  • leading the Psy defectors in Venice
  • continues to struggle being outside Silence
  • late 20’s
  • petite
  • softly curved, icy coal black eyes

Yes. Niiice. I was hoping to get into the defected Arrows more (like the Forgotten). Amazon.uk lists the next Psy/Changeling book as a June 4th release, but no other official word, as yet.

And, as an added bonus, is anyone interested in checking out the maybe-spoilery blurb for Darynda JonesEighth Grave After Dark? Spoilers if you are not up to date…final warning…

With twelve hellhounds after her, pregnant Charley Davidson takes refuge at the only place she thinks they can’t get to her: the grounds of an abandoned convent. But after months of being cooped up there,  Charley is ready to pop. Both metaphorically and literally since she is now roughly the size of a beached whale. Fortunately, a new case has captured her attention, one that involves a murder on the very grounds the team has taken shelter upon. A decades-old murder of the newly-vowed nun she keeps seeing in the shadows is almost enough to pull her out of her doldrums.

Charley’s been forbidden to step foot off the sacred grounds. While the angry hellhounds can’t traverse the consecrated soil, they can lurk just beyond its borders. They have the entire team on edge, especially Reyes. And if Charley didn’t know better, she would swear Reyes is getting sick. He grows hotter with every moment that passes, his heat scorching across her skin every time he’s near, but naturally he swears he’s fine.

While the team searches for clues on the Twelve, Charley just wants answers and is powerless to get them. But the mass of friends they’ve accrued helps. They convince her even more that everyone in her recent life has somehow been drawn to her, as though they were a part of a bigger picture all along. But the good feelings don’t last for long because Charley is about to get the surprise of her crazy, mixed-up, supernatural life….

Eighth Grave After Dark has a release date of May 19th.

So, did anyone else get a pleasant surprise from Aden’s heroine? I had swore for quite a while it would be Alice, but that theory was shot down a while ago so I had no clue. Either way, let the countdown begin.