Pick of the Week – and Best Day Ever!

2017 looks like it is going to be the year where a lot of series I faithfully follow are either wrapping up, spinning off, or changing direction. The Fever series from Karen Marie Moning is one of the latter. This week’s Feversong is the end of the second arc that focused on MacKayla Lane and Jerricho Barrons – or at least that is my understanding of it. Either way, Feversong is my pick of the week, and my pick of the month, and it was probably one of my picks of the year.

feversongSynopsis…

As Mac, Barrons, Ryodan, and Jada struggle to restore control, enemies become allies, right and wrong cease to exist, and the lines between life and death, lust and love, disappear completely. Black holes loom menacingly over Dublin, threatening to destroy the earth, yet the greatest danger is the one MacKayla Lane has unleashed from within: The Sinsar Dubh—a sentient book of unthinkable evil—has possessed her body and will stop at nothing in its insatiable quest for power.

The fate of Man and Fae rests on destroying the book and recovering the long-lost Song of Making, the sole magic that can repair the fragile fabric of the earth. But to achieve these aims, sidhe-seers, the Nine, Seelie, and Unseelie must form unlikely alliances and make heart-wrenching choices. For Barrons and Jada, this means finding the Seelie queen, who alone can wield the mysterious song, negotiating with a lethal Unseelie prince hell-bent on ruling the Fae courts, and figuring out how to destroy the Sinsar Dubh while keeping Mac alive.

This time, there’s no gain without sacrifice, no pursuit without risk, no victory without irrevocable loss. In the battle for Mac’s soul, every decision exacts a tremendous price.

I have the hardcover copy coming, and I was desperate enough to order the Kindle copy, too. And I waited up until 4:00am until it was delivered to my i-pad, just so I could “read the first few chapters”. Yeah, I finished it around 8:00am, but I have to admit that by the end of it I was just skimming things to find out what happened to Jada/Dani and Ryodan, Dancer and Christian. This one has a lot to wrap up, and it will need a much slower, more thorough read for me to get a handle on what I thought about it. My greed didn’t do me, or the book, any favors, and I won’t pull that again. I hope.

And on to the best news ever. I have been spamming Edelweiss with requests for a review copy of White Hot from Ilona Andrews. I mean at least three or four times a week I hit that “submit request” button. Today, I finally got a yes (and it didn’t come with a restraining order, so double win!). While Feversong is one of my most anticipated books of the year, I would go so far as to say that White Hot is tied for third as the book I am most excited for, along with Rituals from Kelley Armstrong and Silver Silence from Nalini Singh. Any guesses as to what I will be doing tonight?

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?

So, What’s Going On?

Just like the title of the post says, what’s going on? Things have been on the quiet side, there hasn’t been much to write about, so I thought I would see if you have seen anything exciting to share. For me, I found a few tidbits, but nothing earth-shaking…

  • J.D. Robb‘s 45th In Death book will be called Secrets in Death, and it will be out on August 8th of next year.
  • Christine Feehan‘s next Dark book will be called Dark Legacy, with a release date of September 5th. And the next Leopard series will be called Leopard’s Blood, with a due date of September 26th. And the second book of her new Shadows series, Shadow Reaper, is due out on May 30th.
  • Still on Christine Feehan, we all know that her Sisters of the Heart series is wrapping up next year. It looks like the spin-off series that will focus on the Russian agents that grew up with Viktor Prakenskii will be called Torpedo Ink. Uh, what? Please, please don’t tell me that it will be a literal translation and all 27 of those dudes will be tattoo artists. Biker/psychic/super-agent/assassin/tattoo artists.Please? I would seriously LOL.
  • I am not sure what is up with Rob Thurman‘s scheduled next release, Everwar. It was listed as a December 6th release, but there isn’t a cover out as yet. The American Amazon site doesn’t list it, but the UK one does. Goodreads says December 6th, but Indigo lists it as 2035. In my hunting for info on it, I stumbled across a bunch of stuff on Twitter which didn’t set quite right with me, even though it was a year old. Basically, she said that she believed she would be dropped by her publisher, which is very sad. But then she blamed her fans for her publishing and financial situation (!), which made me more than a little uncomfortable. You can see what I mean HERE, HERE, and HERE. HERE is a Facebook post where she goes into a bit more detail. Yeah. So, not sure what is going on with upcoming books, but I have to admit I probably won’t spend too much time looking, either.
  • Finally! There is an official blurb for Karen Marie Moning‘s last(ish) Fever book, Feversong…
quotation marks#1 New York Times bestselling author Karen Marie Moning returns with the epic conclusion to her pulse-pounding Fever series, where a world thrown into chaos grows more treacherous at every turn. As Mac, Barrons, Ryodan, and Jada struggle to restore control, enemies become allies, right and wrong cease to exist, and the lines between life and death, lust and love, disappear completely.
Black holes loom menacingly over Dublin, threatening to destroy the Earth. Yet the greatest danger is the one MacKayla Lane has unleashed from within: the Sinsar Dubh—a sentient book of unthinkable evil—has possessed her body and will stop at nothing in its insatiable quest for power.
The fate of Man and Fae rests on destroying the book and recovering the long-lost Song of Making, the sole magic that can repair the fragile fabric of the Earth. But to achieve these aims, sidhe-seers, the Nine, Seelie, and Unseelie must form unlikely alliances and make heart-wrenching choices. For Barrons and Jada, this means finding the Seelie Queen who alone can wield the mysterious song, negotiating with a lethal Unseelie prince hell-bent on ruling the Fae courts, and figuring out how to destroy the Sinsar Dubh while keeping Mac alive.
This time, there’s no gain without sacrifice, no pursuit without risk, no victory without irrevocable loss. In the battle for Mac’s soul, every decision exacts a tremendous price.

There is a great post on Karen’s Facebook page which talks about what you can expect from Feversong…and beyond. You can find it HERE.

  • Oh, Sherrilyn Kenyon keeps on rocking the upcoming new releases, too. June 27th is the date for yet another League book, Born of Trouble.

Sigh…well, I didn’t think I had enough to make a decent-sized post, but once again my long winded rambling won out. Are any of these developments something you are looking forward to? What news have you heard? How do you feel about the Rob Thurman situation?

Cover Lover – Feversong

Even though I was a bit let down by the previous Fever book from Karen Marie Moning, I am still a huge fan of the series. It seemed like a filler book to me, and a set up for the next one, Feversong, which is due out January 17th. And lo and behold, today the cover came out…

feversong

Back to Mac on the cover. Mac was my least favorite part of the last book, and with the way things ended off she will probably get even more page time in this one. Either way, I do think this one will be a pretty addition to the series. There is a brief excerpt out, too, which can be found on the Entertainment Weekly website, found HERE.

Reading Wrap Up…

February is a bit of a meh month for new books for me, so that means I have been dutifully reading off of my TBR and doing the re-reads I need for character guides. That is a good thing, because March is going to be a beast what with the second to last Chicagoland Vampires book, a new Carpathians book (even though I am not exactly excited for a book about Grandma Trixie and what seems to be a whiny Gabrielle. Maybe the fellas can save it for me?), a new Shelly Laurenston story, plus the hat trick of Lady Midnight, Fire Touched, and Marked in Flesh. All on the same day. Yeah.

So, back to the reading portion of things. I continue to tackle the In Death books, and I just finished up the third one, Immortal in Death. I have to say, I am surprised by how much I am really enjoying these J.D. Robb books so far, especially since my experiences with her Nora Roberts books didn’t stand out for me. I am liking Eve a lot, and Roarke continues to be a stand-out. Let’s just say I liked it enough to pay almost $34 dollars for the fifth book – a paperback. Yep. I am getting the UK paperbacks, and the only place I could get this version of Ceremony in Death

ceremony in death

…was from Amazon.uk. I have looked ahead, and I think it is the only one that wasn’t carried by The Book Depository, so hopefully it will be the last one I have to hunt down. It is pretty though, right?

I also started the Baba Yaga series by Deborah Blake. Wickedly Dangerous was a good book, but I am liking the second book, Wickedly Wonderful, quite a bit more. This series is another one that I picked up because buzz for it was so good, and I am happy that I did.

Oh, and I picked up something totally different for me. City of the Lost is a straight up mystery/thriller with a bit of romance about a small town in the middle of nowhere where people go when they need to disappear. The only reason I picked it up is because Kelly Armstrong is a favorite, but I ended up reading the book in one sitting. Definitely looking forward to the next one.

And I finally dove into Rock Redemption. I picked this up when it first came out, but for some reason I didn’t really have any big desire to read it. I liked the rest of the Rock Kiss series, loved Charlie and T-Rex’s book, but Noah and Kit’s story didn’t tempt me. I decided to read the first chapter last night, because I needed to start it for the character guide – and I ended up finishing the book at 6 o’clock this morning. Another awesome book. I can’t believe I doubted that a Nalini Singh book wouldn’t be “my thing”  – but it won’t happen again.

Finally, I did a re-read of Feverborn from Karen Marie Moning, which I did a rant on a couple of weeks ago. I had hoped that some time and a re-read would make me see things in a different way, but no such luck. I can’t say it was a bad book – it was just a nothing book. Nothing happened. Nothing progressed. Nothing was resolved. I really noticed it when I looked at the notes I had taken. Usually, when I take my notes for a character guide, I have between 12 and 15 pages of notes, and when I edit down everything I am down to 10 or 11 pages and a couple of nights to add the info. For Feverborn? I had 4 pages of notes, which edited down to 2, and it took me an hour to add the info. Because nothing happened of note, there wasn’t anything to add to the guide. And that hurt.

So, what have you been reading and loving (or been totally let down by) for the last couple of weeks? What is the most you have paid for a must-have book?

Well, That Hurt…

review iconI have been trying for a couple of hours to write a clear, balanced reaction to January’s book of the month. My pick of the week. One of my top 10 most anticipated books of 2016. I have stopped and started maybe half a dozen times, and I keep coming back to is…

Well, that hurt.

 

Feverborn. That long awaited 8th book from Karen Marie Moning‘s Fever series. I came late into the Fever World, starting after the original five books about Mac and Barrons had already been released, and the first of three planned books about Dani O’Malley was on the horizon. I was a big, big fan, more so of Iced than the first five, actually. In my mind, Mac and Barrons arc was wrapped up, but they would continue to play a strong supporting role in Dani’s stories. That wasn’t to happen, and I was disappointed when the Dani trilogy was scrapped to return to a mostly Mac POV. Even then, I ended up really enjoying Burned. I wasn’t particularly fond of Mac, but then I wasn’t a huge Mac fan to begin with. What I ended up liking in Burned was that while it was predominantly from Mac’s POV, she ended up being mostly an observer through whom we saw the other, more interesting characters. Her weird, contrived drama with Barrons was a minor distraction. I liked everyone else, I even liked the Jada angle, since I figured Dani would come back at some point, so it worked for me. What that whole long-winded paragraph boils down to is that I was so, so excited to see where things headed in Feverborn.

Mild potential spoilers ahead…

 

Basically, they headed nowhere. I would go so far as to say, from my perspective, 80% of Feverborn was filler. Or, Mac. It wasn’t Mac the observer like Burned, it was more emo Mac drama, and dammit it was dull. I actually found myself skimming her parts, and her parts made up most of the book. Jada, Ryodan, Lor, even Barrons felt like background characters for a good portion of the book, but the few times they were around things did pick up a bit. Threads from the previous book, like Lor and Jo, Kat and Kasteo, The Princess, they are non existent here. There isn’t even any progression on Jada’s story until near the very end. Oh, and the end? To make matters worse…

We got Feehaned.

 

Yep. You know what I mean. You are reading along, thinking that things are finally, FINALLY getting interesting, and then you turn the page. Stare blankly. Flip frantically. Hell, even turn the book over and shake it. But then you realize that what you thought was pages and pages of more story was actually Carpathian Healing Chants summaries, character breakdowns, and appendices. Yes. That happened.

Did I hate it? No. Was I let way, way down? Yep. I liked everything non Mac-centric, but unfortunately there just wasn’t enough of it to count. I said it earlier – most of the book felt like filler, with little forward progression and little resolution of previous storylines. I do have to do a re-read for the character guide, so hopefully I will get more out of a second try, but right now I am not holding my breath.

Pick of the Week…

You know, you can blow a whole day watching YouTube. I know, because I just did it. So, that pretty much explains why this post is so late. But it is finally, finally release day for Feverborn, which is the 8th book Karen Marie Moning‘s Fever series. Originally, this one was supposed to be released last October, but the publisher pushed it back to January. I have been anxiously waiting for this one since the moment I finished the last book, and I can’t believe it is finally here.

feverbornSynopsis…

When the immortal race of the Fae destroyed the ancient wall dividing the worlds of Man and Faery, the very fabric of the universe was damaged and now Earth is vanishing bit by bit. Only the long-lost Song of Making—a haunting, dangerous melody that is the source of all life itself—can save the planet.

But those who seek the mythic Song—Mac, Barrons, Ryodan and Jada—must contend with old wounds and new enemies, passions that burn hot and hunger for vengeance that runs deep. The challenges are many: The Keltar at war with nine immortals who’ve secretly ruled Dublin for eons, Mac and Jada hunted by the masses, the Seelie queen nowhere to be found, and the most powerful Unseelie prince in all creation determined to rule both Fae and Man. Now the task of solving the ancient riddle of the Song of Making falls to a band of deadly warriors divided among—and within—themselves.

Once a normal city possessing a touch of ancient magic, Dublin is now a treacherously magical city with only a touch of normal. And in those war-torn streets, Mac will come face to face with her most savage enemy yet: herself.

So, anyone else chomping at the bit for this one? My Amazon prime that I sprung 80+ bucks on was supposed to give me release day delivery, but that doesn’t seem to work for my neck of the woods. So hopefully tomorrow. Hopefully.

Book of the Month

book of the monthHey everyone, hope you all put in a good New Year’s. I survived, and managed to not take anyone else out, either. Beauty! Anyways, I checked back in to be completely surprised by January’s Book of the Month. I would’ve bet good money on the winner being Darynda JonesThe Dirt on Ninth Grave, but by a margin of only four votes, Karen Marie Moning‘s Feverborn squeaked by. I didn’t see that one coming.

feverbornSynopsis…

Hurtling us into a realm of labyrinthine intrigue and consummate seduction, FEVERBORN is a riveting tale of ancient evil, lust, betrayal, forgiveness and the redemptive power of love.

When the immortal race of the Fae destroyed the ancient wall dividing the worlds of Man and Faery, the very fabric of the universe was damaged and now Earth is vanishing bit by bit. Only the long-lost Song of Making—a haunting, dangerous melody that is the source of all life itself—can save the planet.

But those who seek the mythic Song—Mac, Barrons, Ryodan and Jada—must contend with old wounds and new enemies, passions that burn hot and hunger for vengeance that runs deep. The challenges are many: The Keltar at war with nine immortals who’ve secretly ruled Dublin for eons, Mac and Jada hunted by the masses, the Seelie queen nowhere to be found, and the most powerful Unseelie prince in all creation determined to rule both Fae and Man. Now the task of solving the ancient riddle of the Song of Making falls to a band of deadly warriors divided among—and within—themselves.

January is looking like a really decent reading month. Feverborn is at the top of my must-have list, along with Ninth Grave and even Christine Feehan‘s Spider Game. Well, I expect to eye-roll my way through Spider Game, to be honest, but I am still looking forward to it.

Reading Wrap Up…

booksWow, I am almost current on fir this post. Miracle. Anyways, It is time to check in and see what everyone has been reading this week. Personally, I was relatively happy with how things went.

Ok, let me start this off with my pick of the week, Christine Feehan‘s Wild Cat. Um, yeah. Well. Wow. Bad? Not…really. It is what the last few books in the Leopard and Ghostwalker series have been lately. I am now christening these books “Uber Alpha and the Doormat”. The hero is dominant to the point of being a control freak, and the heroine just…goes along with it. She tries to placate and cajole her way out of “trouble”, usually meaning she tried to have a thought for herself, or god forbid said no to something. I like an alpha, but there gets to a point where it is just over the top. Actually, what really hammered this home is that right after I finished Wild Cat, I picked up Viper Game for a re-read for the character guide, and it was pretty much the same story. Or maybe it would be better to say same tone. Completely the same. Just switch leopard shifter for cat-enhanced super-soldier, and you are set. But of course, I still keep reading.

I also wrapped up another series, Marissa Meyer’s The Lunar Chronicles. Winter had a lot of ground to cover, what with not only telling Winter’s story, but finishing off Cinder, Scarlet and Cress’s arcs, as well as resolving the whole Levena situation. There were times I did find that it was almost too much going on, and things did get a bit bogged down at times. I would even go so far as to say that the big resolution was a bit of a let down, to be honest. Levena was so built up that it seemed like taking her down was almost anti-climactic. But even so, it was fun to get back into the Lunar world, and see everyone get their happily ever afters. Or happily ever after one days, as the case may be.

And my final book was another re-read. I picked up the last Fever book by Karen Marie Moning, Burned. Burned was tricky, in the scheme of things. Originally supposed to be the second book from Dani O’Malley’s point of view, it was instead primarily from Mac’s. On one hand, I was hoping for another Dani-centric book (just one in the middle of the series is a bit jarring), but on the other hand, I really liked this story. I liked Mac as an almost passive observer, and I liked the insights into the Nine that we might not have gotten if it had been focused on Dani. I planned on the re-read taking the best part of a week, but I got so involved I did it in two nights after work. But man, I really want the next one now.

So, what did you read this week? Anybody else try Feehan’s Wild Cat? Are you finding the alpha a bit over the top?

This and That…

There hasn’t been a lot going on lately, maybe things will pick up heading into the fall. On the character guide front, I finally got the Arcana Chronicles from Kresley Cole up to date, and I am in the process of adding the original Drake sisters books to the Sea Haven guide. I am also in the process of updating the new release pages with a few new titles, plus new covers and blurbs. Speaking of blurbs, the official one for the next Fever book from Karen Marie Moning, Feverborn, has finally gone public…

In Karen Marie Moning’s latest installment of the epic #1 New York Times bestselling Fever series, the stakes have never been higher and the chemistry has never been hotter. Hurtling us into a realm of labyrinthine intrigue and consummate seduction, FEVERBORN is a riveting tale of ancient evil, lust, betrayal, forgiveness and the redemptive power of love.

When the immortal race of the Fae destroyed the ancient wall dividing the worlds of Man and Faery, the very fabric of the universe was damaged and now Earth is vanishing bit by bit. Only the long-lost Song of Making—a haunting, dangerous melody that is the source of all life itself—can save the planet.

But those who seek the mythic Song—Mac, Barrons, Ryodan and Jada—must contend with old wounds and new enemies, passions that burn hot and hunger for vengeance that runs deep. The challenges are many: The Keltar at war with nine immortals who’ve secretly ruled Dublin for eons, Mac and Jada hunted by the masses, the Seelie queen nowhere to be found, and the most powerful Unseelie prince in all creation determined to rule both Fae and Man. Now the task of solving the ancient riddle of the Song of Making falls to a band of deadly warriors divided among—and within—themselves.

Once a normal city possessing a touch of ancient magic, Dublin is now a treacherously magical city with only a touch of normal. And in those war-torn streets, Mac will come face to face with her most savage enemy yet: herself.

Oh, and Ilona Andrews has announced the title Kate Daniels #9…Magic Binds. I like it. I want it. OH, and if you stalk their website, there have been some teaser excerpts for the next Hidden Legacy series book, White Hot, being put up. They are just making me want it more, I have to admit.