Cover Lover – 2 New Titles

This is a quiet week for new series, and I didn’t really have a pick of the week, either. Instead, it looks like I will be doing another little cover lover post. Let’s start with the second book from Jacquelyn Frank‘s new Immortal Brothers series. Cursed by Ice will be released on March 31st.

cursed by icePurchase at Amazon.com

And this second new one is from Alexandra Ivy. When Darkness Ends is the last traditionally published Guardians of Eternity book, and it is due out on May 26th.

when darkness endsPurchase at Amazon.com

I am not looking forward to seeing the end of the Guardians, I must admit. I know that they will continue in a non-traditionally published way, but I never seem to follow them as well when they go to self-pubbed. Going to have to try and keep this one on my radar, though.

Love Them, Love Them Not…

question markFor the last little while, I have been noticing a slight change in my reading habits – or rather, in who I have been looking forward to reading. As I have bored everyone with for the last few weeks, my total disinterest in Kresley Cole‘s Dark Skye is something that I never, ever would’ve saw coming. Kresley Cole was always, ALWAYS tied for my favorite author, along with Nalini Singh. That was just a given. Now? I still like her work, but I have found myself not as excited as I once was.

Alyssa Day and Lara Adrian are two more that I find myself drifting away from. I was never a rabid fan of their stuff, but it was something that I enjoyed while reading then promptly forgot (with the exception of Lara’s Darker After Midnight, which was a brilliant, game-changing book). I have gotten to the point where I am happy saying goodbye to both the Warriors of Poseidon and the Midnight Breed, so I probably won’t be picking up any more of their books.

But, on the other side, my adoration for Ilona Andrews has only continued to grow, and now I can honestly say that Ilona has supplanted Kresley as tied for my favorite author. Like Nalini, I haven’t yet read anything by them that I didn’t love, and that shows no signs of changing soon. Burn for Me is my most anticipated book for this fall (since I have already read Archangel’s Shadows, that is), and Magic Breaks was one of the best reads of summer.

And a recent development is my obsession with all things Kelley Armstrong. The Cainsville books have me completely hooked, and when I finally took Amber’s recommendation to start the Women of the Otherworld series I was pleasantly surprised. I have even been reading her middle grade Blackwell Pages written with Melissa Marr, and liking that (sort of like Percy Jackson).

How about you? What authors have risen, and which have fallen, in your must-read list? Are any old favorites losing their shine, or is there any new author you can’t get enough of?

Doug’s Review of Darkly Dreaming

review iconSo, I am trying to get back into things, but to be honest there just hasn’t been that much going on. I thought I would do a catch-up post covering everything that I missed over the five days I was gone, but really I didn’t miss anything at all.

Thankfully, Doug Meeks sent over a book recommendation/review of an upcoming release called Darkly Dreaming, which is a great deal at only 99 cents. It is due out next week, and it features stories from Elizabeth Hunter, Grace Draven, Danielle Monsch, Kristen Painter, and Cate Rowan.

darkly dreamingWhat Doug said…

I would usually go through and rate each of these fine novels individually but the review would get much too lengthy and you can research each of these books for yourself if you wish BUT I can say that ALL of these books are pretty much 4.5-5 Star reading. None are boring at least one might leave you emotionally drained.

I had read 3 of these books and decided that for 99 cents to get two full novels it was a steal …. and it was truly a bargain for quality reading.

Possibly the best 99 cent deal I have seen in months (years?) Darkly Dreaming: A Five Book Fantasy Romance Anthology since the following 5 full novels are included, I assume they thought it was a good way to introduce people to their writings, for 99 cents I bought it just for the two novels I had not read

​ and now that I have read all 5 novels I can say that they are ALL 4.5+ novels with no hesitation:​

Feared by a priesthood. Coveted by a god. Tempted by a slave. In Grace Draven’s Master of Crows, a renegade mage must battle a god for his soul and decide if his fate-and the fate of nations-is worth the life of the spy he has come to love.

Experience sword, sorcery, and mythical beings as never before in Stone Guardian (Entwined Realms Book 1), the first book of the Entwined Realms by Danielle Monsch. Larissa’s sheltered world is destroyed when she is targeted by Necromancers. With nowhere else to turn, Larissa forms an uneasy alliance with Terak, leader of the Gargoyles. Will Terak be Larissa’s salvation, or her downfall?

Sometimes love is the most dangerous magic of all. In Heart Of Fire: A fantasy romance by Kristen Painter, Jessalyne leaves a sheltered life to tame her dangerous magic by becoming apprentice to a powerful sorceress, but she’ll need the deadliest man in the realm to get her there safely. If they don’t kill each other first.

Be swept away in Kismet’s Kiss: A Fantasy Romance (Alaia Chronicles) by Cate Rowan. In the desert realm of Kad, a deadly epidemic strikes the palace of Sultan Kuramos. Only a mystical healer from an enemy land may have the skill to save his household. But he never imagined that healer would be a woman.

Hidden at the crossroads of the world, an ancient race battles to protect humanity, even as it dies from within. Ava comes to modern day Istanbul in The Scribe: Irin Chronicles Book One, the first book in the Irin Chronicles by Elizabeth Hunter. One woman searching for answers finds a reluctant guardian in a warrior whose magic is written on his skin. But does Ava have magic of her own?

Cover Lover – The Asylum Tales

Hey all…I made it back in one piece. Something like 12 hours of sleep total over the course of the last 5 days, but whatcha gonna do? Easing back into things, I thought I would up the three covers for the serialized last book in Jocelynn Drake‘s Asylum Tales series.

The first installment is called Demon’s Fury, and it will be released on October 14th.

demon's furyPurchase at Amazon.com

The second part is called Demon’s Vow, and it will be out on October 21st.

demon's vowPurchase at Amazon.com

And things wrap up on October 28th with Inner Demon.

inner demonLooks like it is time to see what I missed out on while I was gone…and then nap. For a long, long time.

How I Spent My Summer Vacation…

question markYou know when you have time off and you make big plans to get a ton of stuff done? Things that you have been putting off for months, that you tell yourself “I will get ALL of that done when I am off”, but the list has gotten so damned big that you can’t possibly get to it all? That was me, this week. Here is how my reading/blogging to-do list looked at the start of my vacation…

  • reformat all author pages to include all of their non-PNR/UF series, change the links and do new graphics for the character guide links.
  • add a couple of new Featured Author pages.
  • finish re-doing the links for at least three pages of the Series Reading List pages.
  • check to make sure all of the new release dates were current, and add all new cover art and blurbs to the monthly summaries.
  • add the new releases I have gathered over the last couple of weeks.
  • get at least 4 character guides up to date.

Yeah, most of that didn’t happen. I did get the new release dates double checked and covers and blurbs added, so things are current as of September 1st. Surprisingly, there weren’t a lot of shifts in release dates this time, so mostly what you were looking forward to should still be on schedule.

I did also manage to get the character guide updated for Gena Showalter‘s Angels of the Dark series, and half of the Dark Skye info added for the Immortals After Dark one, too. I am half-way through the re-read of Rule Breaker, so the Breeds one should be done soonish, as well. That means I am only behind on 8 or 9 now. Beauty.

As for the author pages, I got a grand total of two done. The Alexandra Ivy and Cassandra Clare sections, to be precise. Things are pretty much the same, but I have added a few new things. I dropped the biographical stuff, for the most part, but I did add a listing of all of their series and what genre they were on the front page (like adding Alexandra Ivy’s historicals written under the name Deborah Raleigh, that sort of thing). I also added a little “On the Horizon” section for those upcoming titles where there isn’t much info yet. If you find it awkward or confusing, just let me know.

The biggest thing I did manage to get done was all of my bookshelves cleaned and organized, and all of my books vacuumed. Individually. One. By. One. It is at those moments that I really hate my love of book hoarding. But see…the pretty…

hardcoversoftcoverHow did you spend your summer vacation? Any excitement, action, or drama? Or were you like me and it blew by before you knew it?

Cover Lover – 5 New Titles

Cover time again, and a couple of these are on my must-read list, which is always a bonus. Let’s start with The Ruby Circle, which will be the sixth and final book in Richelle Mead‘s Bloodlines series (even though you just know there will be a series about Eddie and Jill. Right?), which is due out on February 10th.

the ruby circlePurchase at Amazon.com

I was surprised a few weeks ago to see perennial favorite Jennifer L. Armentrout announce a new series she has in the works that will start on December 10th of this year. The series will be called A Wicked Saga, and the first book will be called Wicked.

wickedMarcella Burnard‘s next Living Ink book has a cover, too. Bound by Ink will be released in e-format on November 18th.

bound by inkPurchase at Amazon.com

Next up is Jennifer Ashley and Mate Bond, which is from her Shifters Unbound series. It has a release date of April 7th.

mate bondPurchase at Amazon.com

And wrapping things up for this post is Miss Mayhem, which is the second book in the Rebel Belle young adult series from Rachel Hawkins. Look for it on April 7th.

miss mayhemI have heard many people say that they find the Bloodlines covers ugly. I didn’t think they were amazing, but I never found anything particularly wrong with them, either. But Ruby Circle? Might be able to make a case for that one being a bit on the fugly side, honestly. And the Miss Mayhem one is a bit tacky looking, but it does fit the fun feeling of the series so I think it works. And a new series from Jennifer L. Armentrout is always something to look forward to. I swear that woman must write 24 hours a day, though.

The Witch With No Name Winner…

winner bannerThis rolled around fast, but I wanted to get the winner for Kim Harrison‘s The Witch With No Name done well before the release date of September 9th so that the lucky entrant wouldn’t pre-order it. There were 25 entrants for this month’s giveaway, and the randomly chosen winner (through Random.org) was #10…

Mary K

Congratulations, Mary K. I will be e-mailing you for your contact info shortly.

New Series Alerts…and Pick of the Week

Because I am a total dufus who can’t remember what day of the week it is, I forgot to do the New Series Alerts post yesterday. So, I figured I would just combine it with today’s pick of the week post and call it done. There are actually four new series to look at, starting with Deborah Blake‘s Baba Yaga. The first book is called Wickedly Dangerous, but there was a recently released prequel novella called Wickedly Magical, too, if you want to check that out first.

wickedly magicalSynopsis…

Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one of them….

Older than she looks and powerful beyond measure, Barbara Yager no longer has much in common with the mortal life she left behind long ago. Posing as an herbalist and researcher, she travels the country with her faithful (mostly) dragon-turned-dog in an enchanted Airstream, fulfilling her duties as a Baba Yaga and avoiding any possibility of human attachment.

But when she is summoned by a woman desperate to find her missing child, Barbara suddenly finds herself caught up in a web of deceit and an unexpected attraction to the charming but frustrating Sheriff Liam McClellan.

Now, as Barbara fights both human enemies and Otherworld creatures to save the lives of three innocent children, she discovers that her most difficult battle may be with her own heart.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Up next is Birthright, a prequel novella from Jean Johnson‘s new Flame Seas series. My history with Jean Johnson is spotty, but it does sound interesting.

birthrightSynopsis…

Who is entitled to the Flame Sea throne? For twin beauties Arasa and Kalasa, the question of their royal birthright has driven them both to find the answer by any means necessary. But to determine the rightful heir means that they must discover who was born first. So begins a legendary pilgrimage for the twins, each accompanied by a man of their most sensual dreams. For Kalasa it’s her devoted fiancé; for Arasa, it’s the handsome sorcerer Elrik.

But the legendary odyssey is not without its dangers—for one of them is not at all whom they appear to be, and their true motives are in question. Now, as treachery and desire become one, the truth of the birthright could be as perilous as the very future of the Flame Sea itself.

Purchase at Amazon.com

Also new this week is Devon Monk‘s House Immortal, which is from the series of the same name.

House Immortal.inddSynopsis…

One hundred years ago, eleven powerful ruling Houses consolidated all of the world’s resources and authority into their own grasping hands. Only one power wasn’t placed under the command of a single House: the control over the immortal galvanized….

Matilda Case isn’t like most folk. In fact, she’s unique in the world, the crowning achievement of her father’s experiments, a girl pieced together from bits. Or so she believes, until Abraham Seventh shows up at her door, stitched with life thread just like her and insisting that enemies are coming to kill them all.

Tilly is one of thirteen incredible creations known as the galvanized, stitched together beings immortal and unfathomably strong. For a century, each House has fought for control over the galvanized. Now the Houses are also tangled in a deadly struggle for dominion over death—and Tilly and her kind hold the key to unlocking eternity

The secrets that Tilly must fight to protect are hidden within the very seams of her being. And to get the secrets, her enemies are willing to tear her apart piece by piece.…

Purchase at Amazon.com

And for something a little different, Cherie Priest‘s The Borden Dispatches starts this week with the release of Maplecroft.

maplecroftSynopsis…

Lizzie Borden took an axe and gave her mother forty whacks; and when she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one….

The people of Fall River, Massachusetts, fear me. Perhaps rightfully so. I remain a suspect in the brutal deaths of my father and his second wife despite the verdict of innocence at my trial. With our inheritance, my sister, Emma, and I have taken up residence in Maplecroft, a mansion near the sea and far from gossip and scrutiny.

But it is not far enough from the affliction that possessed my parents. Their characters, their very souls, were consumed from within by something that left malevolent entities in their place. It originates from the ocean’s depths, plaguing the populace with tides of nightmares and madness.

This evil cannot hide from me. No matter what guise it assumes, I will be waiting for it. With an axe.

Purchase at Amazon.com

This week’s only young adult newbie comes from Josephine Angelini. Trial by Fire is the first book of the Worldwalker Duology.

trial by fireSynopsis…

Love burns. Worlds collide. Magic reigns.

This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying many of the experiences that other teenagers take for granted…which is why she is determined to enjoy her first (and perhaps only) high-school party. But Lily’s life never goes according to plan, and after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class Lily wishes she could just disappear.

Suddenly Lily is in a different Salem – one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruellest of all the Crucibles is Lillian . . . Lily’s identical other self in this alternate universe. This new version of her world is terrifyingly sensual, and Lily is soon overwhelmed by new experiences.

Lily realizes that what makes her weak at home is exactly what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. It also puts her life in danger. Thrown into a world she doesn’t understand, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can’t hope to shoulder alone, and a love she never expected.

But how can Lily be the saviour of this world when she is literally her own worst enemy?

Purchase at Amazon.com

And since I am at it, I thought I would add my pick of the week. The choice this week is particularly hard, since there were tons of great books coming our way. In the end, I kept coming back to Thea Harrison‘s Night’s Honor, so I am going with that.

night's honorSynopsis…

In USA Today bestselling author Thea Harrison’s latest Novel of the Elder Races, a woman finds herself in need of protection—and seduced by honor…

On the run from her former employer, Tess knows that she’s vulnerable on her own amongst the Elder Races. That’s why she decides to audition to become the human attendant of a powerful Vampyre of the Nightkind demesne. But while her position affords her the safety she seeks, her protector turns out to be more than she bargained for.

The right-hand man of the Nightkind King, Xavier del Torro is both terrifying and alluring. While his true nature frightens Tess, she can’t ignore the appeal of his innate sense of integrity and self-restraint. Thrown into Xavier’s world, Tess must quickly learn to navigate the dangers—both to her life and to her heart. But the biggest threat comes from her own past…

Purchase at Amazon.com

So, that is how things are shaping up. What was your pick of the week? there are so many great ones I am hoping that they don’t all get delivered at once because I just won’t know where to start. Since I have zero self control, I usually end up reading a few pages of one, then another one, then off to a third. Makes me nuts, but I want to do everything at once.