This and That

sharpest stingI am still working my way through Patricia Briggs‘ Mercy Thompson world, and I find myself getting way behind on all of the other character guides because I am on a roll with Mercy and I don’t want to take a break. So, please ignore that everything looks unfinished – I will get there at some point. Most likely.

Anyways, as I am doing a quick update of things, I thought I might as well list a few of the things I found here.

  • Alyssa Day‘s next Tiger’s Eye Mystery, Eye of Danger, has been pushed back. Originally, it was due out in March, I think, then early July, then end of July, and now it is listed as an August 29th release.
  • Chloe Neill has sold the next two books of her Heirs of Chicagoland series, which is great news. If you are interested, she has posted the first chapter of the next book, Wicked Hour. You can find it HERE.
  • Not trying to sound bitchy, but I have been hunting for info on upcoming Kresley Cole releases with no luck. Has anyone else heard anything about Munro? Her last Facebook post was in February, and her website doesn’t have any new info, either. Goodreads still lists it as just 2019.
  • Jeaniene Frost has made available the prologue and first three chapters of her next Ian and Veritas book, Wicked Bite. You can find it HERE.
  • Jennifer Estep will release her 18th Elemental Assassin book on October 8th. It will be called Sharpest Sting

That’s about it for today. Do you have any info to share? Any updates or tidbits?

Cover Lover – Smoke Bitten

For the last few weeks, I have been pulling a re-read marathon of all of the books in the Mercy Thompson/Alpha & Omega world, and with the re-read I am finding out all over again how much I enjoy this series. It seems with me that I need to go back and give a series a second – or third – read to really appreciate it. And that means that I will all up-to-date and ready for when Patricia Briggs‘ next book, Smoke Bitten, is released on March 10th.

smoke bittenSynopsis…

Mercy Thompson, car mechanic and shapeshifter, faces a threat unlike any other in this thrilling entry in the #1 New York Times bestselling series.

I am Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman.
My only “superpowers” are that I turn into a thirty-five pound coyote and fix Volkswagens. But I have friends in odd places and a pack of werewolves at my back. It looks like I’m going to need them.

Centuries ago, the fae dwelt in Underhill–until she locked her doors against them. They left behind their great castles and troves of magical artifacts. They abandoned their prisoners and their pets. Without the fae to mind them, those creatures who remained behind roamed freely through Underhill wreaking havoc. Only the deadliest survived.

Now one of those prisoners has escaped. It can look like anyone, any creature it chooses. But if it bites you, it controls you. It lives for chaos and destruction. It can make you do anything–even kill the person you love the most. Now it is here, in the Tri-Cities. In my territory.

It won’t, can’t, remain.

Not if I have anything to say about it.

Yep, March is going to be another huge month for big books. Can’t wait.

 

Pick of the Week

There aren’t a lot of new releases out this week, but even if there were my pick of the week would probably still be Storm Cursed from Patricia Briggs. I always liked this series, but since I have gone back to the very beginning to marathon all of the Mercy Thompson world stories it is quickly moving up my favorites list. I always say how little I remember about some of the books I have read, but in this case it is so true. I think it comes down to my being a greedy reader – my first read is always really quick, and I miss a lot of details. But when I marathon book after book and concentrate on the details, I get so, so much more involved. I am only up to Hunting Ground right now, but I am having a hard time tearing myself away to read anything else.

9780425281291_StormCursed_FCO_mech.inddSynopsis…

My name is Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman, and I am a car mechanic.

And a coyote shapeshifter.

And the mate of the Alpha of the Columbia Basin werewolf pack.

Even so, none of that would have gotten me into trouble if, a few months ago, I hadn’t stood upon a bridge and taken responsibility for the safety of the citizens who lived in our territory. It seemed like the thing to do at the time. It should have only involved hunting down killer goblins, zombie goats, and an occasional troll. Instead, our home was viewed as neutral ground, a place where humans would feel safe to come and treat with the fae.

The reality is that nothing and no one is safe. As generals and politicians face off with the Gray Lords of the fae, a storm is coming and her name is Death.

But we are pack, and we have given our word.

We will die to keep it.

Where does the Mercy Thompson/Alpha and Omega world fall in your favorite series list? Have you tried any of her other series? I haven’t, but I have heard good things about them.

 

Reading Wrap Up

I thought I might try something a little different for this post and take a look at not just the new releases that I have picked up, but maybe mention the “retro reads” that I do for the character guides, and then take a quick peek at an upcoming book that also caught my eye this week. Something like a yesterday, today and tomorrow spotlight.

51vz7BcgE-LI have a couple of current reads on the go, which is unusual for me – I am mostly a finish-one-then-move-on kinda gal, but that didn’t work out that way. I have been trying for a while to get through Forever Wolf by Maria Vale, but it just isn’t happening. As much as I enjoyed the first two books in the series, I am just not feeling this one – at all. I have put it down probably 8 or 10 times and tried to go back to it, but it just isn’t working. A big part of it is that I am not connecting to the characters, not even a little, and I am not getting past it. I know reviews have been quiet universally positive, but at this point it might end up being a DNF for me. Sigh.

12403828The book I picked up when Forever Wolf failed me? Celebrity in Death from J.D. Robb. No question, the In Death series has become my stand-by and go-to when I don’t know what else to read – or when I feel like I am in a bit of a slump. There is no doubt that I will enjoy whatever In Death book is up next, and that is a rare thing. I don’t get tired of them, I haven’t ever had one that felt stale or like a repeat of something from the earlier books, and I still look forward to the next story. And at #34 in a series? That is quite the achievement.

moon calledAs for my more retro read, I have gone back and tackled Moon Called by Patricia Briggs. As I always say, it scares me just how much I can forget about a series, and Moon Called is no exception. It felt like I was reading a brand-new book, and I am so glad I picked the Mercy Thompson world for my next guide – I definitely need the refresher. Moon Called is a great story, but if I had one gripe I would say that I found the ending a bit…confusing. Overly complex might be a better way to say it. Targeting Adam to provoke a fight between bad-dude’s father and Bran seemed a bit convoluted. Or, it could be that I was just a bit stunned because it was 7:00 in the morning and I was still reading from the night before and my brain had shut off, but I am going to give the last couple of chapters a re-re-read tonight to get it straight in my head. I have a feeling that this series will be like when I did my guide for the Night Huntress world, and my enjoyment will increase with each book I marathon.

the rogue kingAnd as for what future release caught my eye this week, it is The Rogue King from Abigail Owen. I read the first couple of chapters at the end of the recently released The Rookie, and I liked what I saw. I didn’t know that it was to be a spin-off of her Fire’s Edge books – which I quite enjoy – and that was a pleasant surprise. Here is a peek at the official blurb…

Kasia Amon has spent her entire life in hiding, knowing who and what she is makes her a mark for all sorts of creatures–a treasure to be taken and claimed. All she knows for certain is that keeping her secrets safe means avoiding dragon shifters at all costs.

As a rogue dragon shifter, hunted by his own kind, Brand Astarot has only survived thanks to a dangerous reputation as a mercenary. Giving a phoenix to a Dragon King would guarantee him a place in a clan, taking him one step closer to the revenge he’s waited centuries to take.

But getting his prize to the King is a test of their lives, his skills, and their white-hot chemistry, forcing Brand to have to rethink his plan. Is giving her to the king the right choice? Or should he claim her for himself?

Your turn. What new releases are you reading? Have you gone back into the vault and picked up any old favorites lately?

 

This and That…and a Couple of Other Things

Once again, it seems I am doing a post that covers a bit of this and a bit of that. Where to begin?

  • Oh, yeah. The official blurb is out for Sapphire Flames from Ilona Andrews. I am not ashamed to admit that I have checked every single day for the blurb and the cover since I first saw the book listing. Every one. It is going to be a long, long wait until it is released on August 27th.

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrew comes an enthralling new trilogy set in the Hidden Legacy world, where magic means power, and family bloodlines are the new currency of society…

In a world where magic is the key to power and wealth, Catalina Baylor is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, and the Head of her House. Catalina has always been afraid to use her unique powers, but when her friend’s mother and sister are murdered, Catalina risks her reputation and safety to unravel the mystery.

But behind the scenes powerful forces are at work, and one of them is Alessandro Sagredo, the Italian Prime who was once Catalina’s teenage crush. Dangerous and unpredictable, Alessandro’s true motives are unclear, but he’s drawn to Catalina like a moth to a flame.

To help her friend, Catalina must test the limits of her extraordinary powers, but doing so may cost her both her House–and her heart.

  • Nora Roberts‘ third Chronicles of the One book will be called The Rise of Magicks, and it will be out next November 26th.
  • Oh, and G.A. Aiken is starting up another new series. The Blacksmith Queen is the first book of The Scarred Earth Saga, and it will be released on August 27th. Here’s the blurb…

When a prophesy brings war to the Land of the Black Hills, Keeley Smythe must join forces with a clan of mountain warriors who are really centaurs in a thrilling new fantasy romance series from New York Times bestselling author G.A. Aiken. 

The Old King Is Dead
 
With the demise of the Old King, there’s a prophesy that a queen will ascend to the throne of the Black Hills. Bad news for the king’s sons, who are prepared to defend their birthright against all comers. But for blacksmith Keeley Smythe, war is great for business. Until it looks like the chosen queen will be Beatrix, her younger sister. Now it’s all Keeley can do to protect her family from the enraged royals.

Luckily, Keeley doesn’t have to fight alone. Because thundering to her aid comes a clan of kilt-wearing mountain warriors called the Amichai. Not the most socially adept group, but soldiers have never bothered Keeley, and rough, gruff Caid, actually seems to respect her. A good thing because the fierce warrior will be by her side for a much longer ride than any prophesy ever envisioned …

  • And, there has been a bit of a push-back on the next Mercy Thompson book from Patricia Briggs. Storm Cursed was originally scheduled for a March 5th release, but the new date is May 7th. I’m not actually mad about that, since there are already a crap-ton of great March books and I like to spread out the happy-happy.

I feel like I am forgetting something, but I am sure it will come to me the moment I publish this post. That is pretty much how things roll. I am of course drooling for Sapphire Flames, but I’m a bit iffy on the new Aiken series. Not that I’m not looking forward to it, but I was hoping for another Dragon Kin book and with a new series, I don’t know when (or if) that will happen. But it does sound interesting, though.

Cover Lover – Storm Cursed

Hey everyone. How was the North American folks’ long weekend? I was actually off work, and spent the entire, glorious time…cleaning. Not living the dream, but it had to be done (and I am happy afterwards). But as a reward for my good behavior, there is a cover to post. Storm Cursed is the next Mercy Thompson book from Patricia Briggs, and it has a release date of March 5th. Just a side note, but that is totally a different Mercy model, am I right?

9780425281291_StormCursed_FCO_mech.inddSynopsis…

In this powerful entry in the #1 New York Times bestselling series, Mercy Thompson must face a deadly enemy to defend all she loves…

My name is Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman, and I am a car mechanic.

And a coyote shapeshifter.

And the mate of the Alpha of the Columbia Basin werewolf pack.

Even so, none of that would have gotten me into trouble if, a few months ago, I hadn’t stood upon a bridge and taken responsibility for the safety of the citizens who lived in our territory. It seemed like the thing to do at the time. It should have only involved hunting down killer goblins, zombie goats, and an occasional troll. Instead, our home was viewed as neutral ground, a place where humans would feel safe to come and treat with the fae.

The reality is that nothing and no one is safe. As generals and politicians face off with the Gray Lords of the fae, a storm is coming and her name is Death.

But we are pack, and we have given our word.

We will die to keep it.

Amazon.uk a while back had listed an untitled Moira spin-off book, but that disappeared without a trace. Has anyone heard any word of this, since it has been rumored for a couple of years now? I even went back and re-read their novella to get a refresher, and I very much liked their story.

Bookish Bucket List

PrintIt’s funny how things change. Over the last few years, I have done pretty massive purges of my books (both read and unread), to the point that I couldn’t even begin to guess how many hundreds I have gotten rid of (probably around 1000, or pretty close to it). I was going over my bookshelves the other day, looking at what I had left, and it made me realize that I don’t really have a ton of stories left on my reading bucket list – or books that I want to read before I die.

My beloved Cainsville series from Kelley Armstrong has wrapped. We finally got the Dani O’Malley/Ryodan story I had been waiting for for what felt like forever in the Fever series. I would’ve legit offed someone to get my hands on books two and three of the Hidden Legacy series a even a few days earlier. Another person (or two) would gladly have been sacrificed if it brought me closer to Heart of Obsidian. And any book that featured the Ghostwalkers was automatically on the list. I am talking about those books that I honestly was nuts about getting my hands on. But now, while I have several books I am very much looking forward to, I don’t have any that inspire that same kid-at-christmas feeling as I used to have. And I miss it.

Well, there are still a few that I would consider to be on my bucket list (and a few of them are already in the works). Jeanine Frost‘s next book will feature Ian, who has been on my wish-list since he was first introduced in the Night Huntress series. And William from the Lords of the Underworld will get his story in 2019 (and then I can pull the plug on the Lords). I have heard rumors that Ilona Andrews will be writing Roman’s book sometime after Hugh’s trilogy (another must read), but I still am whining about more Derek and Julie books, too.

At this point, the top 10 characters I would love to have stories about would look something like this (in no particular order):

1) Illium – Guild Hunter

2) Aodhan – Guild Hunter

3) Malachi – Psy/Changelings

4) Alexei – Psy/Changelings

5) Janvier – GhostWalkers

6) Dane – The Breeds

7) Ben – Mercy Thompson World

8) Roman – Kate Daniels World

9) Derek – Kate Daniels World

10) Lor – Fever Series

What does your bucket list look like? What were your original stories that you couldn’t wait to get your hands on?

The Others Arc II – Lake Silence

lake silenceMarch is like the mega-load month for great, anticipated books for me. Last week, there were three of my top reads for the ENTIRE YEAR released on the same damn day. Karen Marie Moning‘s High Voltage was great, and I really enjoyed Patricia BriggsBurn Bright, too. But for me the big surprise was just how much I liked Lake Silence.

It isn’t like I didn’t think I would like it, but when Anne Bishop said she was wrapping things up with Meg and Simon and the gang in the Lakeside Courtyard to focus on new stories, I was a bit…meh. I was hoping for maybe a Vlad spin-off, or even Henry, but a totally new set of characters didn’t really get me excited. Glad I was so wrong.

I loved Lake Silence – just as much as the first five books. I bonded pretty quickly to the new cast of characters, and I really enjoyed the storyline. Usually a book without a pretty strongly defined romance (or romantic potential) doesn’t really click for me, but this one did. I can honestly say that I didn’t even miss the Lakeside crew after about the second chapter, and that is saying a lot.

Now the problem is that the next book is supposed to be set in Bennett, so does that mean we won’t get any more stories about Vicki, Julian and Wayne? Not to mention Ilya and Natasha, who were complete scene stealers. That would just be wrong, on so many levels.

What did you think of this new spin on The Others? Were you happy with it, or did you still miss the originals?

Pick of the Week

Yeah, this really shouldn’t be hard. But what happens when you have not one, not two, but three monster releases coming out on the same day? There are other great books as well, but I am talking about the wait-a-whole-year, read in one sitting books that you have counted down the days for. For me, the big three are Burn Bright from Patricia Briggs, Lake Silence from Anne Bishop, and High Voltage from Karen Marie Moning.

But for me, High Voltage just managed to edge past the other two books to become my pick of the week. In a way, I think that part of my excitement is that Mac and Barrons’ POV in the Fever world finally seems to be over, and we now get to focus on Dani/Jada. I liked Mac, sure, but I thought her story needed to wrap up a couple of years ago, and I was a bit disappointed when the original plan to focus on Dani got pushed back. Until now. And more Dani means more Ryodan, which is what makes it my win.

high voltageSynopsis…

There is no action without consequence…

Dani O’Malley was nine years old when the delusional, sadistic Rowena transformed her into a ruthless killer. Years later, she’s tough, hardened, yet achingly vulnerable and fiercely compassionate, living alone by her own exacting code. Despite the scars on her body, driven by deeper ones carved into her soul, no one is more committed to protecting Dublin. By day, she ensures the safety of those she rescues, by night she hunts evil, dispensing justice swiftly and without mercy, determined to give those she cares for the peace she has never known.

There is no power without price…

When the Faerie Queen used the dangerously powerful Song of Making to heal the world from the damage done by the Hoar Frost King, catastrophic magic seeped deep into the earth, giving rise to horrifying, unforeseen consequences–and now deadly enemies plot in the darkness, preparing to enslave the human race and unleash an ancient reign of hell on Earth.

There is no future without sacrifice…

With the lethal, immortal Ryodan at her side, armed with the epic Sword of Light, Dani once again battles to save the world but her past comes back to haunt her with a vengeance, demanding an unspeakable price for the power she needs to save the human race and no one—not even Ryodan who’d move the very stars for her—can save her this time…

So, your turn. Which one of the too many to be true great books is your favorite for the week? Do you have a hard time trying to decide which one to read first? One sitting or do you try to make it last, since it is a year until the next one?

This and That

I don’t know if I have enough info to do a full “this and that” updating post, but then it might be nice to have something that is under a million rambling words, right?

  • Let’s start with site stuff. You might notice that I did pull some of the character guides that were either obsolete or very out of date with no hope of being updated. That said, I did keep a copy of them all and I can email any of them to anyone who needs them. That includes The Chronicles of Nick, White Rabbit Chronicles, Angels of the Dark, and The Midnight Breed guides. Just send me an email if you need any of them.
  • Christine Feehan‘s release schedule has been updated a bit to include dates for the next Leopard People and Torpedo Ink books. Leopard’s Run will be released on October 30th, and Torpedo Ink #2 will be out on January 3rd.
  • There is a little teaser synopsis for Gena Showalter‘s new Gods of War series up on Amazon. The first book is called Shadow and Ice, and it will be released on October 30th…

“After being trapped in an ice prison for centuries, a group of otherworldly immortals have finally broken free. In a bid to rule the earth, their fight to the death resumes, and the whole world becomes a gladiator arena. But this time, these savage warriors will risk more than their lives and the survival of their realms; they’ll also risk their hearts.”

  • Ilona Andrews had a competition over on their blog to pick the name of the newest Innkeeper Chronicles story featuring Maud and Arland. The winning title was Sweep of the Blade. They also did an interesting Q&A session over there, as well. If you pour over the questions, there is some good news (they are in talks with Avon for more Hidden Legacy books) and some not so great news (it doesn’t seem like there will be any more Derek-and-Julie stories). But I will take what I can get.
  • Shades of Wicked from Jeanine Frost has gone up for pre-order on Amazon, which makes it a real thing in my world. It is also showing a hardcover release, which is news to me, but I will keep an eye out for more info.
  • I had mentioned in a previous post that J.R. Ward will be starting a new contemporary series early next year that will feature firefighters. Turns out the title of the first book will be Consumed.
  • The next Argeneau Vampires book from Lynsay Sands will be called Vampires Like It Hot, and it will be released on September 25th.
  • October 30th is shaping up to be a pretty epic release day. According to Amazon.com, Nalini Singh‘s next Guild Hunter book is due out then, as well, and it will be called Archangel’s Prophecy. No clue on whose story it is as yet, though.
  • Mercy Thompson #11 from Patricia Briggs will be called Storm Cursed, and it will be released next March. I had seen a listing somewhere showing the Tom and Moira spin-off book as a September 2017 release, but I can’t find it now. I don’t think I was dreaming it, but who knows at this point?
  • I’m really hoping this is a misprint, but it looks like we might have quite a wait for the next Elder Races story from Thea Harrison. Lionheart is showing a December 2018 release. I haven’t come across anything else in progress, either. Have you heard what Thea has on the go? Is there another story due out before Lionheart? If not, that is an 18 month period between releases, which seems odd to me.
  • And finally, the second Lowtown book from Lindsay J. Pryor now has a title. Rogue will be released on November 22nd.

Yeah, I had more than enough for the post. Have you heard of anything coming up in the PNR/UF world? Any new releases you are really anticipating?