Cover Lover – 10 New Titles

It used to be pretty standard to do a cover lover post a week, but I find for the last while it is more like one a month or so. Not sure why, but it just feels like there isn’t as much info on new books coming out, either. At least for this batch, I found 10 covers to take a look at. Let’s start with the biggie of the group, which comes from Anne Bishop. Lake Silence is the 6th book set in The Others world, and it has a release date of March 6th.

lake silenceIn this thrilling and suspenseful fantasy, set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Others series, Vicki DeVine and her lodger, the shapeshifter Aggie Crowe, stumble onto a dead body . . . and find themselves enmeshed in danger and dark secrets.

Human laws do not apply in the territory controlled by the Others—vampires, shapeshifters, and paranormal beings even more deadly. And this is a fact that humans should never, ever forget . . .

After her divorce, Vicki DeVine took over a rustic resort near Lake Silence, in a human town that is not human controlled. Towns like Vicki’s have no distance from the Others, the dominant predators that rule most of the land and all of the water throughout the world. And when a place has no boundaries, you never really know what’s out there watching you.

Vicki was hoping to find a new career and a new life. But when her lodger, Aggie Crowe—one of the shapeshifting Others—discovers a dead body, Vicki finds trouble instead. The detectives want to pin the man’s death on her, despite the evidence that nothing human could have killed the victim. As Vicki and her friends search for answers, things get dangerous—and it’ll take everything they have to stay alive.

Next up is Perfect Gravity from Vivien Jackson. It is the second book of the Tether series, and it has a release date of November 7th.

perfect gravityKellen Hockley usually keeps quiet about his past, but once upon a time he loved a girl named Angela. He hasn’t seen her in a decade, but now he has to break the news to her that his team of rogue treasure hunters accidentally killed her husband. He’s had better days…

It’s not the news that’s delivered to Angela Neko that breaks her apart–it’s the rumbly, Texas drawl delivering it. She can’t believe she’s hearing Kellen’s voice again. But there’s no time for distractions. When Angela’s own life is threatened, yielding up all of her lies and secrets, she and Kellen must figure out how to reverse the geopolitical firestorm she lit to save the world, to save Kellen’s cat…and just maybe to save each other.

And Isabel Cooper has a new one due out also on November 7th. Highland Dragon Rebel is the second book of the Dawn of the Highland Warrior series.

highland dragon rebelMadoc of Avandos is on a journey to cement alliances. Targeted by an assassin, he needs a companion who can fight. When dragon shifter Moiread MacAlasdair returns from war, he knows she’s the best woman for the job. Duty and political strength compel Moiread to agree, but when they cross into the otherworld and Madoc’s life is threatened, Moiread jumps into protection mode-and will do whatever it takes to keep the man of her dreams alive.

This next one is from Kerrelyn Sparks. Eight Simple Rules for Dating a Dragon is the third book of The Embraced series, and it will be released on March 27th.

eight simple rules for dating a dragonGwennore has a talent. An Elf able to track down the cause of an illness and heal it, she’s a valuable asset to her people. But when the kidnapping of a young girl thrusts Gwennore into the very heart of the realm of the dragons, she discovers not only a place of power and magic, but also a haunted land, plagued by an ancient curse that all but ensures extinction to the royal family. But when she meets the smoldering General Silas Dravenko, they strike a bargain—save the country from its cursed illness, and he will return the kidnapped girl. She’s been raised never to trust a dragon, but never did making a deal with the devil feel so good…

Silas has no way of curing the family he’s loyally served for years. But when a beautiful elf, long considered the enemy of the dragons, comes bursting into his world, Silas is awakened to passion and desire in a way he’s never felt before. But can he trust a sworn enemy to save the very existence he holds dear? And can their love survive those that threaten to tear them apart?

This is another one on my “one day” list. Eileen Wilks‘ 14th World of the Lupi book will be called Dragon Blood, and it will be out on December 5th.

dragon blood

January 30th is the release date for Baby I’m Howling For You, which is the first book of the Alphaville series from Christine Warren.

baby i'm howling for youRenny Landry is a wolf on the run. Pursued by a shapeshifting stalker and his slobbering pack of killer coyotes, she is forced to flee her job as a librarian to find sanctuary in the wooded hills of Alpha, Washington. A well-secluded safe space for troubled shifters, Alpha is Renny’s last hope. But the first person she meets there is a gorgeous alpha male with fiery eyes, fierce tattoos, and one ferocious appetite—for her…

Mick Fischer thought he left his past behind when he moved to Alpha. But fate has a way of biting him in the tail when a female wolf shows up on his property. Wounded, desperate—and disarmingly hot—Renny brings out the snarling, protective alpha beast in Mick like no other woman he’s known. Can these two haunted, hunted wolves manage to mate for life…even as the deadliest past demons howl at their heels?

This next cover is for Aliens Abroad, the 16th book of the Katherine “Kitty” Katt series from Gini Koch. It will be out on December 5th.

aliens abroad.jpgWith the human population growing and alien refugees pouring in from around the galaxy, Earth is becoming too overcrowded to sustain itself—and the solar system is filling up with the alien overflow. Advanced technology from the Alpha Centauri and Vatusan systems offers one possible solution. It’s time to explore new planets and see if any uninhabited ones can be claimed.

The President and First Lady, aka Jeff and Kitty Katt-Martini, aren’t supposed to be on this mission, but what looks like a snafu during a political photo op on the newly christened Distant Voyager spaceship turns out to be a call for help from a planet that might be Earth’s salvation…or its destruction.

The discovery of a world at the opposite end of the galaxy that seems like it could be a twin to Earth creates the usual issues for Kitty & Company. It also raises questions of Z’porrah and Ancient influence—not to mention cloning, the multiverse, and, scariest of all, whether or not the Black Hole Universe Police are starting to take too much of an interest in this particular universe.

For some reason, I thought this next one was young adult, but apparently I was mistaken. Bannerless, the first book of the Bannerless Saga from Carrie Vaughn, is an adult dystopian. It is due out this July 11th.

bannerlessDecades after economic and environmental collapse destroys much of civilization in the United States, the Coast Road region isn’t just surviving but thriving by some accounts, building something new on the ruins of what came before. A culture of population control has developed in which people, organized into households, must earn the children they bear by proving they can take care of them and are awarded symbolic banners to demonstrate this privilege. In the meantime, birth control is mandatory.

Enid of Haven is an Investigator, called on to mediate disputes and examine transgressions against the community. She’s young for the job and hasn’t yet handled a serious case. Now, though, a suspicious death requires her attention. The victim was an outcast, but might someone have taken dislike a step further and murdered him?

In a world defined by the disasters that happened a century before, the past is always present. But this investigation may reveal the cracks in Enid’s world and make her question what she really stands for.

These next two are both young adult, starting with Inferno from Julie Kagawa. It is the 5th book of the Talon series, and it will be released on April 24th.

inferno

And the last one for today is from Kristen Simmons. Pacifica is a stand-alone young adult science fiction release which is due out on March 6th.

pacificaMarin is cosario royalty, a pirate like her father and his father before him. Sailing the ocean to chase adventure is in her blood. But these days no one cares that the island town her people call home is named after her grandfather. They have a new leader, one who promises an end to their hunger – and one who thinks that girls are meant for the kitchen or the brothel. Marin knows she’s meant for more than that, and with the sudden influx of weapons on the island, and rumors of a pending deal with the enemy oil nation in her wake, she knows a big score to gain the council’s favor is the only way to save her people, and herself.

Ross lives a life of privilege. As the president’s son he wants for nothing, but he longs for a life of adventure. On a dare, he convinces his best friend Adam to sneak out to the Docks, the site of local race riots between the poor Shorlings and the upper class. But when Adam is arrested along with the other Shorlings, and not even the president is willing to find him, Ross finds himself taking matters into his own hands. He journeys back into the Docks, ready to make deals with anyone, even a beautiful pirate, if it means Adam’s safe return.

When Marin and Ross meet in dangerous Shoreling territory he sees a way to get his friend back and she sees her ticket home. The ransom a president’s son would command could feed her people for years and restore her family’s legacy. But somewhere in the middle of the ocean, Marin must decide if her heart can handle handing over the only person who has ever seen her as more than a pirate.

There you have it. Any standouts for you? I admit that I like Lake Silence – it echoes the first five, but still has its own vibe. It is my favorite of the batch, for sure.

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Lake Silence Blurb

I do so love it when info on a much-anticipated book comes out – makes me weirdly happy. I get particularly happy when they get listed on Amazon, since it makes them feel like real, in-the-works books. Well, the pre-order for the next Others book from Anne Bishop, Lake Silence, was put up a couple of days ago…complete with blurb.

In this thrilling and suspenseful fantasy, set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Others series, Vicki DeVine and her lodger, the shapeshifter Aggie Crowe, stumble onto a dead body . . . and find themselves enmeshed in danger and dark secrets.

Human laws do not apply in the territory controlled by the Others–vampires, shapeshifters, and paranormal beings even more deadly. And this is a fact that humans should never, ever forget . . .

After her divorce, Vicki DeVine took over a rustic resort near Lake Silence, in a human town that is not human controlled. Towns like Vicki’s have no distance from the Others, the dominant predators that rule most of the land and all of the water throughout the world. And when a place has no boundaries, you never really know what’s out there watching you.

Vicki was hoping to find a new career and a new life. But when her lodger, Aggie Crowe–one of the shapeshifting Others–discovers a dead body, Vicki finds trouble instead. The detectives want to pin the man’s death on her, despite the evidence that nothing human could have killed the victim. As Vicki and her friends search for answers, things get dangerous–and it’ll take everything they have to stay alive.

Hm, sounds interesting – more mystery based than the first five books were. Now we just have to wait until March 6th to find out. I am very much looking forward to seeing the cover for this one, too.

Reading Wrap Up

I swear, I have been trying to make the reading wrap up a regular Sunday feature, but it just seems that I keep missing the mark. On the bright side, though, I did get both Silence Fallen from Patricia Briggs and Etched in Bone by Anne Bishop done. With varying degrees of success.

silence_fallen_layout.inddSilence Fallen was up first, and I really liked it. I enjoyed seeing Mercy on her own, fighting her own battles (and winning), but I liked seeing Adam without Mercy even more. I don’t remember any other books in the series where Adam played such a large role – or was seen more as pack Alpha than Mercy’s mate. I liked seeing that side of him, and I liked how much faith he had in Mercy to get herself out of whatever situations were thrown at her. And Bran? So didn’t see that coming. It was definitely a winner for me.

I know that there is a Tom and Moira book in the works, and next March is the fifth Alpha and Omega release, but I would be so happy to see stories for Bran, Ben, Honey. I know it might be too much of a good thing, but I always find myself wanting more of them.

etched in boneAnd I am just finishing up Etched in Bone. Unfortunately, though, I can’t quite tell how I feel about it. Is it good? Yep. Is it end of the story arc, resolve everything good? I don’t think so. There was a pretty good sized chunk of story in the middle of the book where I was just waiting for…it. Something. The set up for the big finale. The progression of Simon and Meg. Hell, someone to get killed. And it didn’t happen. It was still a good book, and the ending kicked the drama up, but I guess I expected more of a finale for this arc. More of a “last book” feeling.

Ok, that wraps things up for me. What have you been up to? I am sure most of you already picked up both of these – what did you think?

Book of the Month – Etched in Bone

Even though March continues to be a pretty epic release month, I’m sure that there aren’t many of us who are surprised that the new Others book from Anne Bishop was quite definitively chosen as the book of the month. Etched in Bone is the final book in this first arc featuring blood prophet Meg and the Lakeside Courtyard, but there are thankfully more stories set in this world to come. Some series are hard to let go of, and this would be one.

etched in boneSynopsis…

After a human uprising was brutally put down by the Elders—a primitive and lethal form of the Others—the few cities left under human control are far-flung. And the people within them now know to fear the no-man’s-land beyond their borders—and the darkness…

As some communities struggle to rebuild, Lakeside Courtyard has emerged relatively unscathed, though Simon Wolfgard, its wolf shifter leader, and blood prophet Meg Corbyn must work with the human pack to maintain the fragile peace. But all their efforts are threatened when Lieutenant Montgomery’s shady brother arrives, looking for a free ride and easy pickings.

With the humans on guard against one of their own, tensions rise, drawing the attention of the Elders, who are curious about the effect such an insignificant predator can have on a pack. But Meg knows the dangers, for she has seen in the cards how it will all end—with her standing beside a grave.

Happy Endings and New Beginnings

I must be getting old, because I could swear I did a post like this not long ago. A search of the site showed me it was way back in July 2014. Huh.

Whenever I see that I series I love is wrapping up, it always gives me a feeling of loss. No one likes to say goodbye to favorite characters and worlds, and it seemed for a while that 2017 was shaping up to be a big year for finales. Turns out that “finale” might be too strong a word, though.

Come this January, we will be getting the final book from Karen Marie Moning‘s Fever series. Sort of. From what I have been seeing around, Feversong will be the end of Mac and Barrons arc, but there will be more stories to come. Karen has signed on for at least two more books set in this same world. She hasn’t shared much in the way of detail, or who will be getting their story told, but it does mean that this “final” story isn’t really a finale after all.

In February, Jeaniene Frost will release the final book of her Night Prince series. I enjoyed this one, but I would’ve been just as happy to see this one wrap up at a trilogy, as originally planned. The first three had great momentum, but I seem to have lost some of it for Into the Fire. But even though we are winding down Vlad and Leila’s story, it has recently been confirmed that Jeaniene is going back into the Night Huntress World once more. Next up? Ian’s story. I have hoped for this one since the beginning, so I am very happy this is another world that will continue in some way.

There are actually two series in March that will be taking a new direction. Anne Bishop‘s very popular The Others series is set to wrap up at book five, Etched in Bone. But while it may be the end of the stories focused on Meg Corbyn and the Lakeside Courtyard, it has recently been announced that a new book will be released in 2018 that will be set in Thaisia and feature a new character named Vicki DeVine. And it looks like the story after that will be about the folks in Bennett and Prairie Gold.

Also in March comes the final book from Christine Feehan‘s Sisters of the Heart series, Bound Together. But once again, it seems like this is just the end of this part of the story. Starting in 2018, the psychically gifted spy/assassins of Viktor Prakenskii’s brutal Russian school will be getting their own spin-off series, Torpedo Ink.

April will see the end of the Chicagoland Vampires series from Chloe Neill. Well, sort of. This past August, a deal was made for the first two books in a new series set in this same world. The first book follows what happens when a brutal murder threatens the peace between humans and supernatural creatures, and it will focus on an all-new heroine. I will be keeping my eyes open for more details, but I do hope that the shifters will play a decent sized role.

Those are the ones that we know will be going on in some form. These next ones? Maybe not so much. Or at least word hasn’t tricked down to us readers yet.

I didn’t know that Faith Hunter‘s recent Soulwood series is supposed to be a trilogy. Really, I thought it was a new series. If that is the case, things will be wrapping up next year with the release of Flame in the Dark. Of course, she could always move on to other characters stories, people maybe like Rick since things seem to be changing for him, but I am not sure I am ready to let go of Nell. I will be hunting for more info on this one, too.

These next three fall into the I-refuse-to-let-go category. As of right now, Ilona Andrews is rumored to have not one, but two, series calling it quits in 2017. Kate Daniels is set to wrap up with book number 10, but honestly I find that hard to grasp. I could so see this series going on for several more books without slowing down at all. How do you say goodbye to Kate and Curran? Hopefully, there will be other stories set in this world (Roman. Derek. Julie. Hugh. Barabas. Christopher…you get my point) to tide us over, but that is going to be a dark day.

And even though only the first book of their Hidden Legacy series has been released at this point, I am a huge fan.  Burn for Me from Ilona Andrews was one of my favorite reads of 2014, and to think that it is only contracted for three books is a major bummer. I am still holding out hope that this one gets picked up for more, though. Seriously, how can it not? Ilona Andrews can’t have their two big series end that close together. Right? Right?

Sadly, I do believe Cainsville might be a done deal, though. Kelley Armstrong is usually pretty firm when she announces something is done, and while she might revisit a world with a short story here and there, she seems to tell the story she wanted to tell and move on to something completely new. Part of me enjoys that, but part always hopes for more.

Can you add any to the ending-or-changing direction series for 2017? I don’t remember a year like this in…ever, actually. I have seen things end, or spin-offs start, but not in the numbers we will be looking at next year. Do you have any predictions for where things will go for these “new chapters”, or are you as in the dark as I am?

Spotlight Wednesday – Annie Bellet

On one of my random internet searches, I came across and article over on the Barnes and Noble Sci-fi & Fantasy Blog called ” 12 Highly Bingeable Urban Fantasy Series”. Any list that has Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs, Anne Bishop and Faith Hunter on it catches my attention. While there were several series mentioned that I knew, it was a completely unknown one that caught my eye and made me think of doing an author spotlight post.

Author Annie Bellet has an ongoing, seven book series (with the eighth due in December) called The Twenty-Sided Sorceress, which gets its start with the first long-novella length story, Justice Calling.

justice-callingSynopsis…

Gamer. Nerd. Sorceress.

Jade Crow lives a quiet life running her comic book and game store in Wylde, Idaho. After twenty-five years fleeing from a powerful sorcerer who wants to eat her heart and take her powers, quiet suits her just fine. Surrounded by friends who are even less human than she is, Jade figures she’s finally safe.

As long as she doesn’t use her magic.

When dark powers threaten her friends’ lives, a sexy shape-shifter enforcer shows up. He’s the shifter world’s judge, jury, and executioner rolled into one, and he thinks Jade is to blame. To clear her name, save her friends, and stop the villain, she’ll have to use her wits… and her sorceress powers.

Except Jade knows that as soon as she does, a far deadlier nemesis awaits.

If you are interested in checking this one out, it can be found on Amazon.com for free by clicking HERE.

There is a print bind-up of the first four books called Level Grind, and one for the next three called Boss Fight.

Other books in the series:

spotlight-template

annie-belletAbout the author: Annie Bellet is a full-time speculative fiction writer. She holds a BA in English and a BA in Medieval Studies and thus can speak a smattering of useful languages such as Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Welsh. Her books include Avarice (Pyrrh Considerable Crimes Division: Book 1), The Gryphonpike Chronicles series, and the Twenty-Sided Sorceress series. Her interests besides writing include rock climbing, reading, horse-back riding, video games, comic books, table-top RPGs, and many other nerdy pursuits.

News From The Others

heartPretty much everyone who comments here on Wicked Scribes is a fan of Anne Bishop‘s The Others. In fact, I can’t remember if anyone has ever said anything even remotely negative about it, and that is pretty rare (the only other authors universally praised here I can think of are Elizabeth Hunter and Ilona Andrews). And if you are like me, you haven’t been exactly thrilled with the thought of The Others wrapping up in five short months with the release of Etched in Bone. There have been a few rumors of it not really being the end, but they have been just that – rumors. Until now.

Over on Happy Ever After, the announcement has been made that the series will continue on. Not only that, but there are even a few details to get us excited. I personally had figured that if the series was extended, the focus would shift to someone we had already met in the Courtyard, maybe Vlad, for example. Turns out I was way off base. The publisher shared this about the 2018 release:

quotation marksSet in the country of Thaisia, a present-day alternate North America, the strange and beautiful world of The Others is one where humans live alongside shapeshifters, vampires and a host of beings even more deadly known as the terra indigene. The first five books of The Others have focused on the inhabitants of the Lakeside Courtyard — a private terra indigene community whose residents are tasked with keeping watch over the humans in the city.
Bishop’s new novel takes readers to a human village nestled in the terra indigene-controlled Finger Lakes region of Northeast Thaisia. It stars divorcee Victoria “Vicki” DeVine, owner of The Jumble — a small, self-sufficient community located on the shore of Lake Silence. Vicki and the town’s residents soon find themselves caught up in a chilling mystery, after a series of vicious murders rock the small community.

You can read a few small excerpts, and get a feel for some of the characters, by checking out the official announcement HERE.

While I am a bit sad to find out it won’t be focused on the Lakeside Courtyard, I am still intrigued by this new direction and new set of characters. Are you intrigued by the thought of delving into a whole new area of this world, or were you hoping for more from the characters we already know?

The One Where I Change My Mind

A while back, I had a very pleasant, rational, adult, behind-the-scenes exchange with a reader here at Wicked Scribes. Since I don’t want to broadcast someone else’s personal opinions, I will leave the name out, but what we discussed was Cassandra Clare and her Shadowhunter world. What we debated was how much is too much, and when should she start wrapping up her series and start something else. “The Reader” thought that enough was enough, and that hopefully The Dark Artifices would finish things up. My take was, since I am a fan, you can never have too much. More = better, right?

Well, this is the one where I change my mind.

I hate to say it, but I have swung over to the other side. As I was looking at her upcoming schedule, I became completely overwhelmed by the sheer length of time it would take to actually get everything done. Between the second and third books of The Dark Artifices, the three books of The Last Hours trilogy, the rumored secret fifth Shadowhunter trilogy, and the upcoming adult Magnus Bane trilogy – at roughly one book a year – that take us to 2027. 20 freakin’ 27. The Shadowhunter world just keeps getting added to, extended, and expanded beyond belief.

For me, now, The Dark Artifices would be the perfect place to wrap things up. I am not a huge fan of this new series, nowhere near my love of The Mortal Instruments and especially The Infernal Devices, but it isn’t bad. But I think it is enough. A Magnus series (again, for me) would be pointless now, since we know he gets his happily ever after with Alec, and we already got a full set of novellas devoted to his past. I don’t really have any interest in Will and Tessa’s children in The Last Hours, either. And that mystery fifth trilogy isn’t even on my radar.

Part of what has changed for me is that I have been reading authors who say from the start how many books a series will have, like Kelley Armstrong‘s five book Cainsville series, or Anne Bishop‘s five book The Others series. I don’t like to see a great series wrap up, but I also don’t like to see a great series get dragged down by not knowing when to end. And as much as I love a good spin-off series, you can only spin-off so many times before things just get repetitive. What side do you fall on…carry on or wrap up? How much is too much for you? What other series (cough*Carpathians*cough) do you think should be looking towards a finale?

Cover Lover – Etched in Bone

From the sounds of it, tomorrow is the cover reveal for Nalini Singh‘s Archangel’s Heart. But to tide us all over, we can behold the recently released cover art for Etched in Bone by Anne Bishop. And let me gush now…same cover model! Same cover design! My OCD thanks them! Now we all can officially begin the countdown to the March release…

etched in bone

Check back tomorrow for Nalini’s cover, too. This is a good week to be a reader-geek.

Etched in Bone Blurb

A few days ago, the blurb for Silence Fallen was released, and it sounds great…of course. Today I found the back cover copy for another hugely anticipated release, this time Etched in Bone from Anne Bishop. I like it better when the blurb and cover are released together, but I will take what I can get.

New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop returns to her world of the Others, as humans struggle to survive in the shadow of shapeshifters and vampires far more powerful than themselves…
 
After a human uprising was brutally put down by the Elders—a primitive and lethal form of the Others—the few cities left under human control are far-flung. And the people within them now know to fear the no-man’s-land beyond their borders—and the darkness…

As some communities struggle to rebuild, Lakeside Courtyard has emerged relatively unscathed, though Simon Wolfgard, its wolf shifter leader, and blood prophet Meg Corbyn must work with the human pack to maintain the fragile peace. But all their efforts are threatened when Lieutenant Montgomery’s shady brother arrives, looking for a free ride and easy pickings.

With the humans on guard against one of their own, tensions rise, drawing the attention of the Elders, who are curious about the effect such an insignificant predator can have on a pack. But Meg knows the dangers, for she has seen in the cards how it will all end—with her standing beside a grave…

Now, we just have to wait until March 7th for it..ugh. And once again, it looks like next March will be a monster month for great new books. Start saving now.