Magic Breaks Review…

review iconIt won’t be long now until we get our hands on the next Kate Daniels book from Ilona Andrews, Magic Breaks. It was by far the most anticipated book of July for most people, and seeing the series make the jump to hardcover makes it even better. Doug Meeks got his hands on an early review copy, and sent over his thoughts. From everything I have heard, it is a pivotal book in the series, and I am just left hoping that all of my favorites survive it.

magicbreaksWhat Doug said…

OK, I am tired of typing “The best one yet” on every one of these Kate Daniels reviews so just act like I never said that …… again.

I loved this book, it starts out with a bit of a character guide including a bit of info on who they are and what part they play/played.  Then there is a bit of a “the story up until now” in a narrated Chapter 1 and combined with the detailed character guide which is written in such a manner as to be part of the story it is a unique and exceptional way to catch us all up without the chore of rereading past books, wonderfully done and make me wonder “why doesn’t everybody do this?”.

OK, assuming you read Magic Rises (and if you have not then you need to stop and read it before you go any farther) you know that a ton of stuff hit the fan last book and there are debts to be paid and blood to be shed and my revenge junkie is almost in a coma from all this drug of choice.

Roland is coming but first she has to head off Hugh (who really needs killing) who is now trying to start a war with The Pack and that is just not going to happen if Kate has anything to say about it.  Curran is off on a mission and not here to advise her so Kate tried to handle things in her own unique fashion, start the fun-o-meter.

The thing about these novels is that there is always a main plot and several very interesting secondary plots going, all of which lead to a great reading experience, the same applies to this book, we know Roland is coming (yes we will get to meet him), we know Kate has to do something about Hugh, let us not forget a date she has promised Hibla (revenge junkie is really cheering about this one), the wolf Alpha needs to be replaced and is causing problems, throw in a couple more small plots and you have a very busy book.  I was really too sick to be reading during this time but once I started it was impossible to put it down.

The fact that with all the plots and violence going around, one of the things I will always remember and reread is Kate purchasing a donkey, no way I can explain it to you, it actually caused me physical pain to read it since I was laughing so hard.

That is why these books are always auto-buys for so many of us, there is no other Kate/Curran clone to read.  There are other great stories and other great authors but there is only 1 Kate Daniels and she is just another heroine without Curran to balance her out, together they are always exceptional and unstoppable.

Bottom Line:  Exceptional as always, plots that never go exactly the way you thought, stories that bring it home to the reader in emotional ways that only great writing can do, no 2 dimensional characters you love them all.  This is a series many of us had to struggle through the first two books because there was so much there but almost all of us were hooked for life by the end of book 3, this is another breaking point in the series, not really sure where it goes from here but I can already see it will never be dull or lackluster, 5 Stars only because they don’t allow more, well done once again Ilona and Gordon.  I can’t wait to see where this goes.

NOTICE:  There is a very good short story about Julie at the end of the book, it is exceptional and I think may contain some future characters for this series or maybe a new one.

It sounds like we won’t be disappointed at all (not that I was expecting to be, but you know how it goes). Let the countdown begin…

Magic Breaks Winner…

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Sorry about the delay for posting, but dear Hurricane Arthur knocked our power out for the last 15 hours or so (and I am way, way luckier than most). This is really rare for where I live…I think the longest we have ever gone without power is something like an hour, maybe two. Anyways, back to business.

There were 39 entrants for the Ilona Andrews Magic Breaks giveaway, and the randomly chosen winner (through Random.org) was #21…

Ann

Congratulations, Ann. I will be contacting you for your info shortly.

July’s Book of the Month and Giveaway…

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I am pretty sure no one is too shocked but July’s book of the month is Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews. I am finishing up the re-read of the entire series for the character guide, and to say that I expect big things from this one is a huge understatement. Surprisingly, though, I have found myself more focused on Burn for Me (the new Avon series) than this one, but the excitement is building now. And hardcover! Yay! (My inner nerd just broke free).

If you are interested in winning a copy when it is released on July 29th, just leave a comment in the section below.

Contest open to all, winner to be chosen at random through random.org. Let’s end this Friday night at midnight (Atlantic time). Good luck!

magicbreaksSynopsis…

No matter how much the paranormal politics of Atlanta change, one thing always remains the same: if there’s trouble, Kate Daniels will be in the middle of it…

As the mate of the Beast Lord, Curran, former mercenary Kate Daniels has more responsibilities than it seems possible to juggle. Not only is she still struggling to keep her investigative business afloat, she must now deal with the affairs of the pack, including preparing her people for attack from Roland, a cruel ancient being with god-like powers. Since Kate’s connection to Roland has come out into the open, no one is safe—especially those closest to Kate.

As Roland’s long shadow looms ever nearer, Kate is called to attend the Conclave, a gathering of the leaders from the various supernatural factions in Atlanta. When one of the Masters of the Dead is found murdered there, apparently at the hands of a shapeshifter, Kate is given only twenty-four hours to hunt down the killer. And this time, if she fails, she’ll find herself embroiled in a war which could destroy everything she holds dear…

Cover Lover – 7 New Titles

It seems like so long since I have put together a cover lover post…I think I was just waiting on a “big” one…and having Nalini Singh and Ilona Andrews in the same book definitely constitutes as big. They both are contributing stories to the Night Shift anthology, along with Lisa Shearin and Milla Vane (aka Meljean Brooks). Look for it on November 25th.

night shiftI picked up the first two books from Suzanne Johnson‘s Sentinels of New Orleans series dirt cheap from the Book Outlet a couple of weeks ago, and so I will be keeping an eye out for Pirate’s Alley when it is released next April.

pirates alleyUp next is Of Silk and Steam from Bec McMaster. It is part of her London Steampunk series, and it is due out on March 1st.

of silk and steamNancy Holzner continues her Deadtown series with the release of Firestorm, which is due out on March 31st.

firestormMarch 31st is also the release date for Sherrilyn Kenyon‘s next Chronicles of Nick book, Instinct.

instinctNext up is Aimee Carter‘s Captive, the second book from her Blackcoat Rebellion series. It is due out on November 25th.

captiveAnd the last one for today comes from Alexandra Bracken. In the Afterlight is the third and final book from her Darkest Minds trilogy, and it is due out on October 28th.

in the afterlightNot a bad bunch, at all. Of course, I am most excited to get my hands on a Psy/Changeling novella (featuring Bastien Smith) and a Kate Daniels novella (Jim and Dali), especially in the same book, but the rest aren’t bad, either.

Site Updates…

Just a quick note to say that I have updated and re-upped the character guide for Christine Feehan‘s Sisters of the Heart series. I was hoping to go back and do all of the Drake Sisters books and make one big guide, but that didn’t happen. Yet. I thought that with the release of the third book, Air Bound, on May 27th, I might as well just put up what I already had in case anyone needs a refresher of who’s who.

Not all of the guides are completely up to date, and it will be a while before they are. I am planning on starting one for Ilona Andrews‘ Kate Daniels series tonight, and I am really hoping to have it done before Magic Breaks comes out in July. It sounds like a long time, but actually I will be pushing it trying to get it finished. Can’t wait for a re-read of the series, I must admit. After that, I will catch up on what I am behind. Promise.

Teasers and Excerpts…

air boundI have a love/hate relationship with excerpts. On one hand, I am greedy and can’t wait to get my grubby hands on a piece of a much-anticipated book. On the other hand, sometimes having just a tease makes me want the book even more. There are a few new excerpts available, if anyone is interested in checking things out…

  • The first chapter of the upcoming third Sisters of the Heart book from Christine Feehan, Air Bound, is available in the author’s member’s section, HERE. The book will be released on May 27th.
  • I don’t think there is anyone who isn’t excited about getting their hands on Nalini Singh‘s Shield of Winter on June 5th, but if you would like to sneak a peek at chapter one you can find it HERE.
  • I think I have bored pretty much everyone with my anticipation for Ilona Andrew‘s upcoming Burn for Me (due on October 28th). There have been several teasers already released, but another snippet has been upped at the author’s blog, HERE. If you head over, you can check out their snazzy new site design, too.
  • Aaand, Jeanine Frost is starting a New Adult series on August 26th with the release of The Beautiful Ashes, the first book of the Broken Destiny series. If you are interested in checking the excerpt out, head over to Jeaniene’s blog, HERE.

This and That…

There has been a bit of info coming out on some upcoming releases lately, so I thought I would do a little post showing some of the tidbits going around…

  • For some reason, I had thought that Christina Henry‘s Black Wings series was wrapping up, but it looks like a new book will be out on October 28th. This one is called Black Spring.
  • Thanks to everyone who sent me the links to J.R. Ward‘s appearance in Cincinnati, where she shared some major spoilers. One of them was that the next BDB book will be called The Shadows, and it will feature both Trez and iAm.
  • Laura Resnick‘s next Esther Diamond book, Abracadaver, will be released on November 4th.
  • Also on November 4th is the second book from Chris Marie Green‘s new Jensen Murphy, Ghost for Hire series. This one is called Another One Bites the Dust.
  • Well, Kim Harrison‘s final Rachel Morgan book is coming soon. The Witch With No Name is due out on September 9th.
  • The long delayed Walker Papers book by C.E. Murphy, Shaman Rises, will finally be released on June 24th.
  • November 25th is the release date for the Nalini Singh, Ilona Andrews, Lisa Shearin and Milla Vane (Meljean Brooks) novella, Night Shift. Nalini’s story is about Mercy’s brother Bastien, and Ilona’s is about Jim and Dali.
  • The next Sandra Hill Deadly Angels book will be called Vampire in Paradise, and it is due out on November 25th.
  • A new Deadtown novel from Nancy Holzner is also coming this year. Firestorm is due out on November 25th, as well.
  • Aimee Carter‘s second YA Blackcoat Rebellion book, Captive, will be out on November 25th.
  • It doesn’t have a title yet, but the 16th Love at Stake book from Kerrelyn Sparks will hit the shelves on December 31st.
  • Fans of J.D. Tyler‘s Alpha Pack will be glad to know that book 6, called Wolf’s Fall, will be out on December 2nd.
  • December 2nd is also the release date for Darkness Falls from Keri Arthur. It is the final book in her Dark Angels series.
  • Universal Alien from Gini Koch will also be out on December 2nd.
  • Kate Elliott starts a new series next February called The Black Wolves Trilogy. The first book is called The Black Wolves.
  • Book one of Kelley Armstrong‘s new Age of Legends series just comes out this week, but it looks like the second book will be called Empire of Night. It is due out sometime next year.
  • I have been keeping an eye out for info about Anne Bishop‘s The Others, and I finally scored. It looks like book three will be called Vision in Silver…bad news is it is due out next year. Sometime.
  • Also coming sometime in 2015 is the 4th Alpha and Omega book from Patricia Briggs. It looks like this one will be called Dead Heat.
  • The third and final book from Alexandra Bracken‘s The Darkest Minds trilogy will be called In the Afterlight, and it is due out on September 16th. She will follow it up with a new YA time travel duology, with book one being called Passenger, and book two being called Wayfarer.
  • Way off next February is Chaos Choreography, the fifth book from Seanan McGuire‘s InCryptid series.
  • Kerstin Gier will have another of her series translated into English next year with the release of Silver: The First Book of Dreams. It is due out on January 6th.
  • And the UK version of Amazon has a new Christine Feehan listing. It shows the next (and very, very long awaited) Ghostwalker book, Viper Game, as a January 25th release. I am starting the countdown as we speak.

Anything interesting? Which ones are you most excited for?

Cover Lover – Burn for Me

I have made absolutely no secret that I cannot wait for the new Ilona Andrews series, Hidden Legacy. Subtle is not my middle name. So, you can imagine my happy-happy when I did my daily cover browse…and saw Burn For Me. A book isn’t a real book until I get the cover art, so this makes it all official. This is one of my most anticipated reads this year, and October 28th cannot come fast enough.

burn for me

Random Stuff and Cover Lover

Well, sometimes timing just works out perfectly. Last night I finished up the quick little character guide for the first book of The Innkeeper Chronicles, and today the first chapter of book two was upped on Ilona Andrews‘ site. This one is called Sweep in Peace, and as before, there will be a chapter upped roughly every week with hopefully another print version to follow at the end.

Also, for those who are impatiently awaiting the next Guild Hunter book Archangel’s Shadows, Nalini Singh upped a small excerpt featuring Janvier and Ashwini. Since this is of course one of my most anticipated releases for this year, I was pretty happy to see a little something to tide me over.

On the cover side of things, there are five new ones for today. This first one is the cover for the upcoming Sookie Stackhouse anthology featuring short stories from authors like Seanan McGuire, Rachel Caine and MaryJanice Davidson. Dead But Not Forgotten is due out on November 25th.

dead but not forgottenCover #2 comes from Lexi Blake‘s Thieves series. Steal the Night is due out on June 3rd in e-format, with a print version to follow at a later date.

steal the nightThere are three young adult titles, too. Collide is the long delayed third book from Melissa West‘s The Taking series, and it is now set for a December 2nd release.

collideI must admit, I am digging this next cover. The Girl Who Never Was, from author Skylar Dorset, will be out on June 1st.

the girl who never wasAnd finally, Josephine Angelini starts up her new Worldwalker Trilogy on September 2nd with the release of the first book, Trial by Fire.

trial by fire

This and That…

Just some random info and new release dates from out and about…

  • Shelly Laurenston will be going back to her Hunting Season world, in a manner of speaking, with a new three-book series. The new Crows book will be set in Los Angeles, with new characters and a new storyline.
  • Robin D. Owens will release her 13th Celta’s Heartmates book, Heart Fire, on November 4th.
  • It looks like the Queen Betsy series from MaryJanice Davidson just keeps chugging along. Undead & Unwary will be out on October 7th.
  • Looking for more Sookie? Dead But Not Forgotten is a collection of stories set in Bon Temps, written by authors such as Seanan McGuire, Rachel Caine, and MaryJanice Davidson. It will be out on October 7th.
  • The second book from Samantha Shannon‘s The Bone Season book, The Mime Order, will be out on October 21st.
  • Alexandra Adornetto starts up her new Ghost House Saga on August 26th with the release of Ghost House.
  • I didn’t even know the first book was part of a series, but Erin Quinn‘s second Beyond book, The Three Fates of Ryan Love, will be out on September 30th.
  • Fans of Kresley Cole‘s Arcana Chronicles series will have a little extra wait for the third book, Dead of Winter. It has been pushed back to January 6th.
  • October 7th is the release date for the next Jane Yellowrock book from Faith Hunter, and it will be called Broken Soul.
  • It is a bit of a wait for Suzanne Johnson‘s next Sentinels of New Orleans book, Pirates Alley. It is due out next April.
  • Sherrilyn Kenyon‘s sixth Chronicles of Nick book will be called Defiant, and it won’t be out until April of next year.
  • Moon Shifter #5 from Katie Reus will be called Hunter Reborn, and it is due out next February.
  • The next Kitty Norville book from Carrie Vaughn, Low Midnight, will be out at the end of this year.
  • Fans of Jaye Wells‘ Prospero’s War series will have to wait until next March for the third book, Deadly Spells.
  • Christine Feehan continues her return to super-productivity. She has finished up the next couple Sisters of the Heart books already, and the long-awaited Ghostwalker book, Viper Game. And after that, there will be a new Leopard book due called Cat’s Lair.
  • Jennifer Estep‘s Black Widow will be released November 25th. Hard to believe the Elemental Assassin series is already up to book #12. The blurb is out already…

There’s nothing worse than a cruel, cunning enemy with time to kill—and my murder to plan.

With wicked Fire elemental Mab Monroe long gone, you’d think I could finally catch a break. But someone’s always trying to take me down, either as Gin Blanco or my assassin alter-ago. Now along comes the Spider’s new arch-nemesis, the mysteriously named M. M. Monroe, who is gleefully working overtime to trap me in a sticky web of deceit.

The thing is, I’m not the only target. I can see through the tangled threads enough to know that every bit of bad luck my friends have been having lately is no accident—and that each unfortunate “coincidence” is just one more arrow drawing ever closer to hitting the real bulls-eye. Though new to Ashland, this M. M. Monroe is no stranger to irony, trying to get me, an assassin, framed for murder. Yet, as my enemy’s master plan is slowly revealed, I have a sinking feeling that it will take more than my powerful Ice and Stone magic to stop my whole life from going up in flames.

  • Sometimes my best guesses just don’t work out. I had assumed that the hero from the Ilona Andrews‘ upcoming Burn for Me would be the fire Prime, Adam Pierce. The blurb proved me wrong, though…

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews launches a brand new Hidden Legacy series, in which one woman must place her trust in a seductive, dangerous man who sets off an even more
dangerous desire…

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.

So, that is about that for this week. Any gossip or juicy news to share?