New Series Alerts

As decent a month for new releases as January is, there aren’t many new series starting up – and what there are are mostly all out this week. Go figure. Let’s start with the new one from Jacquelyn Frank, which is called Thirst. It is the first book of the new Energy Vampires series.

thirstSynopsis…

A hidden society of vampires—and the humans they love—are at the heart of this opening novel in a biting, all-original series from the New York Times bestselling author of the Nightwalkers saga.

Rafe DaSilva is an energy vampire, soaking up nourishment from the sun—and, only when necessary, drawing sweet sustenance from humans who are pure in body and spirit. As the right-hand man to his queen, Rafe is a key player at a historic peace summit in New York City, which will unite the vampire nations against a common threat: the sycophants, who feed on humanity and kill indiscriminately. But Rafe’s fascination with a beautiful blond police detective may put everything at risk.

Detective Renee Holden has never worked a homicide quite like this. The victim has twin puncture wounds on his neck, and the only eyewitness swears she saw a vampire. Now’s definitely not the time to get distracted by a seductive stranger. But the suave, darkly austere, exotically handsome Rafe DaSilva is a hard man to deny, and as Renee falls under his spell, she also falls prey to his enemies. Desperate to protect her, Rafe lifts the veil on a shadow realm she can only visit—a world of intoxicating power, terrifying dangers, and forbidden pleasures.

The next two are both young adult. Frostblood is the first book of the Frostblood series, and it is written by Elly Blake.

frostbloodSynopsis…

Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby’s powers are unpredictable, and she’s not sure she’s willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon.

All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to take part in the king’s tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love.

And this final one is from Veronica Roth. Her new Carve the Mark duology starts up this week with the release of the first book, also called Carve the Mark.

carve the markSynopsis…

On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not—their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?

Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power—something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.

Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuvhe, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive—no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive—or to destroy one another.

I dropped Jacquelyn Frank from my author list a few years back, mostly because I found that I always loved the first book or two from any series she wrote, but then the rest didn’t grab me at all. Which of these will you be checking out?

Well, This is Just Plain Weird

I was doing my nightly scan through things to see what happened while I was at work today, and I came across a very, very weird article. Weird enough that I literally stopped for a second to figure out if it was April Fools Day, or the article I read was dated April 1st. But nope, it is still July, and this is my random weirdness for today.

Do you remember how the powers that be decided to split the final movie adaptation from Veronica Roth‘s Divergent series, Allegiant, into two parts? Yeah, they followed the trend (or more likely they followed the money), and decided to make two movies, Allegiant and Ascendant. Ok, here is where the weirdness comes in…it looks like Ascendant will NOT be heading to a theater near you. Instead, it will be a straight to television release. You heard that right, folks. No theatrical release. There haven’t been any details on exactly where you will be finding it (Network? Netflix? Who knows), but Ascendant will be exclusively on the small screen. And that isn’t even all of it. Nope.

It seems that the ultimate goal is to THEN spin things off into a full fledged TV show. They would wrap things up with the existing cast of Shailene Woodley, Theo James and company, introduce all new players, and continue on in some form or another. And may I once again repeat…THIS IS WEIRD.

Granted, if you look at the numbers, this franchise hasn’t been the biggest success. But still, this seems so very odd to me. And kind of like beating a dead horse. Either film it or forget it, but this plain out of left field. And screams of desperation.

What is your take? I might’ve mentioned that I find this plain weird once or twice (or way more than that), but do you think this is a good idea? Have you been watching the movies, and do you plan to follow it to the small screen? Can you see a TV show succeeding where the movies have obviously failed?

Cover Lover – 5 New Titles

Happy weekend, everyone. It is time for a little cover lover post, this time looking at only 5 new titles. Let’s start with a new one from Elizabeth Hunter and her Irin Chronicles series. The Staff and the Blade will be released on July 12th.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000032_00049]Lovers. Warriors. Enemies. Legends.

Damien and Sari. Their union became pivotal in Irin history. But to understand their ending, you must go back to the beginning. A young singer and a hardened warrior meet and mate, but their life is torn apart by violence, betrayal, and grief.

Yet no matter how much pain and anger stain their lives, bonds in the Irin race cannot be abandoned. Damien and Sari will never truly leave each other, because those who are destined cannot be ignored.

The Staff and the Blade is a novel in four parts. It is the fourth book in the Irin Chronicles.

This second one is from Sharon Shinn. Unquiet Land is part of the Elemental Blessings series, and it will be released on November 1st.

unquiet landLeah Frothen has returned home to rebuild the life she’s avoided for years. But she can scarcely catch her breath before she is summoned to meet with the regent, Darien Serlast, the man who made her a spy. Leah is reluctant to take on a new assignment, but Darien has dangled the perfect lure to draw her in…

Leah finds she enjoys the challenges of opening a shop catering to foreign visitors, especially since it affords her the opportunity to get to know Mally, the child she abandoned five years ago. Leah is simultaneously thrilled, terrified, hopeful, moved, and almost undone as she slowly attempts to become part of her daughter’s life.

But when the regent asks her to spy on ambassadors from a visiting nation, she develops a dangerous friendship with a foreign woman and finds herself falling in love with a man from her past. Soon Leah learns that everyone—her regent, her lover, and even her daughter—have secrets that could save the nation, but might very well break her heart.

Lets look at Susan Dennard‘s next book, Windwitch, which has a release date of January 31st. It is the second book in her young adult fantasy series, The Witchlands.

windwitch

Empire of Storms, the fifth book of Sarah J. Maas‘s young adult Throne of Glass series, will be released on September 16th.

empire of stormsThe long path to the throne has only just begun for Aelin Galathynius. Loyalties have been broken and bought, friends have been lost and gained, and those who possess magic find themselves at odds with those don’t.

As the kingdoms of Erilea fracture around her, enemies must become allies if Aelin is to keep those she loves from falling to the dark forces poised to claim her world. With war looming on all horizons, the only chance for salvation lies in a desperate quest that may mark the end of everything Aelin holds dear.

Aelin’s journey from assassin to queen has entranced millions across the globe, and this fifth installment will leave fans breathless. Will Aelin succeed in keeping her world from splintering, or will it all come crashing down?

And this final one is from Veronica Roth. Her new duology will start up early next year with the release of Carve the Mark.

carve the markOn a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not — their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?

Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power — something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.

Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuve, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive — no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive — or to destroy one another.

New Allegiant Trailer….

As per the usual for book-to-movie adaptations, the third book of Veronica Roth‘s Divergent series will hit the screen in two parts. For something a little different, instead of Allegiant parts 1 and 2, the first part will be called Allegiant, but the second will be renamed Ascendant. There is also rumors that the storyline will somehow be “expanded”. Hm, perhaps change the ending that had so many up in arms? I wonder…

Either way, I just randomly stumbled upon the trailer for Allegiant, and it is reminding me of how little I remember about that book. And things look way, way different than I thought they would.

Where does Divergent/Insurgent/Allegiant/Ascendant fall on your book-to-movie scale? I didn’t hate it, didn’t love it, but I didn’t feel the need to rush to the theater to see Insurgent when it came out. I waited and picked it up on blu-ray, and watched it a couple of weeks ago, but I wasn’t in any rush for it. I guess it is middle of the pack for me.

Insurgent Trailer…

So, that Insurgent trailer is a thing. Either my memory is really wonky, or there are a few changes from Veronica Roth‘s book. I don’t actually mind changes, as long as they make sense, but I am having a bit of a hard time figuring out what the trailer is going for – Matrix type vibe? Love story? I don’t think it looks bad, actually, but it is a bit hard to get a handle on (but it is way more interesting than the teaser trailer that came out earlier).

 

What do you think? For those who have read the book, do you think it suits the source material, and for those who haven’t read it, does this trailer make you want to?

Cover Lover – 7 New Titles

So, the unexpected treat of finding the Archangel’s Shadows cover also lead to a few more covers turning up. This is sort of a mix of adult, young adult,  the whole works.

This first one is from the MoonBound Clan Vampires series from Larissa Ione. Chained by Night is due out on August 1st.

chained by nightNext up is Summer Moon, the second book from Jan DeLima‘s Celtic Wolves series. It is due out on September 30th.

summer moonHm, not quite sure I can put my finger on why, but I am not feeling these covers from the new Kristen Painter series. Anyways, City of Eternal Night is due out on December 2nd.

city of eternal nightI am reading the first book of Jennifer L. Armentrout‘s new Dark Elements series now, and I am quite enjoying it. Book two will be called Stone Cold Touch, and it has a release date of October 28th.

stone cold touchAre you looking forward to the Divergent novellas from Veronica Roth? Four: A Divergent Collection is due out in print on July 8th.

four divergent collectionThere is a new series starting soon from author Lindsay Cummings that caught my eye called The Murder Complex, and The Fear Trials is the prequel novella. Look for it on May27th.

the fear trialsAnd this last one is from author Amy Rose Capetta. Unmade is the second and final book in her Entangled series, and it is due out next January.

unmadeSo, good, bad…or ugly? Any stand-outs for you, or nothing catch your eye in this batch?

Pick of the Week…

I am pretty sure that other YA fans are looking forward to this one, too. This week is the release of Allegiant, the final book in Veronica Roth‘s Divergent trilogy. Unlike some of the recent book adaptations that have been less than successful as movies, I still have high hopes for Divergent when it hits the big screen next March.

allegiant-book-cover-high-resSummary…

One choice will define you.

What if your whole world was a lie?
What if a single revelation—like a single choice—changed everything?
What if love and loyalty made you do things you never expected?

The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.

Uh, it looks like the very quick scan I did of the reviews over at Goodreads has the fandom massively divided into love it or hate it. Sounds ominous. I am trying to stay spoiler-free, but if you have managed to read this one already are you thumbs up or thumbs down?

Cover Lover – 6 New Titles

I haven’t been posting that many covers lately (at least, compared to what I used to). The thing is, it just seems like the last few months have been blah for cover releases – not much that jumps out at me, no big titles that I just can’t wait to get my hands on. Hopefully that turns around soon, but for this post I did find six newbies to show you.

I am obsessively trying to find the Divergent footage that was shown at Comic Con, or a teaser trailer, or something. But so far, all I found Veronica Roth related was the cover for the first of four e-novellas that will feature Four/Tobias. The Transfer will be released on September 3rd.

the transferC.C. Hunter starts a spin-off of her Shadow Falls series called Shadow Falls: After Dark next April with the release of Reborn.

rebornI admit, I tried a couple of Amanda Ashley books back when I first started to read PNR, and for some reason they just weren’t for me. Her next Children of the Night book, Night’s Promise, will be released on February 4th.

night's promiseAuthor Christine D’Abo will start her new Shadow Guild series this December 3rd with the release of the first book, called Gilded Hearts.

gilded heartsCynthia Eden is a favorite of mine, so anytime I see something new from her I am happy. This one is the cover for the first book in her new Phoenix series, called Phoenix Fire. Burn for Me will be released on January 28th.

burn for meAnd this final one gets my “Oh-crap-back-away-from-the-Photoshop” award for awkward cover of the week (maybe month). The second book in Kate Douglas‘s new Spirit Wolf series, Dark Moon, will be out on February 1st.

dark moonSo, likes or dislikes? Any favorites among this pile? Do you find the Dark Moon cover as oddly put together as I do, or am I just seeing things?

This and That…

1346218864_cleanSooo, the Series Reading Lists section (HERE) has been updated, and I am almost finished adding the 100 or so new releases I found while working on it. After that, it will be a month-by-month check of Amazon to see what they have added to their pre-order lists, so over the next week or so the New Release Dates should be completely up to date.

Oh, and a quick question. Does anyone actually use the Completed Series list section (HERE)? I find it a bit of a pain, actually, since just when you think a series is done, a new novella or e-book is in the works. If it isn’t something people use, I will probably delete it.

While I was checking to see if there was any information about the new series coming from Ilona Andrews, I saw where Ilona and Gordon announced that next year’s Magic Breaks will be released in hardcover. They go into a bit of detail about the decision (which they are of mixed feelings about), but things were taken out of their hands. Personally, I am thrilled since I love me the hardcovers, but I do hope that there will be a re-release of the earlier titles in hardcover, as well. I wonder how long until Jeanine Frost makes the jump?

On the topic of hardcovers, the second Alpha and Omega book from Patricia Briggs, Hunting Ground, will be re-released on January 7th. That is the last one I needed to have everything switched over, so good news.

There have been quite a few titles added to the New Release Pages in the last few days (and more to come), so here is a few worth noting…

  • Stephanie Tyler will release a new e-book series starting this September. Book one will be called Redemption, and it will be out on the 16th.
  • Nalini Singh will release both of her new Psy/Changeling novella stories from the Wild Invitation compilation in e-format on November 5th. Declaration of Courtship is Cooper and Grace’s story, and Texture of Intimacy features Walker and Lara.
  • Angelfall author Susan Ee will release her second book from the Penryn and the End of Days series this November, and it will be called World After.
  • It looks like J.T. Geissinger‘s next book, Edge of Darkness, will be released on December 10th.
  • Jennifer L. Armentrout‘s new YA series with Harlequin teen called The Dark Elements, which features a half gargoyle/half demon heroine, should be good. The first full book will be called White Hot Kiss, and it is due out on December 31st.
  • Rachel Morgan #12, from author Kim Harrison, will be called The Undead Pool. Look for it on February 25th of next year.
  • Veronica Roth will release a collection of four short stories from her Divergent world called Four: A Divergent Story Collection, on February 11th.
  • There isn’t an official title as yet, but the next Argeneau Rogue Hunter book from Lynsay Sands will be hitting the shelves on March 25th.

So, that is about it. Anything to get excited about for you? I am most looking forward to Jennifer Armentrout’s new series with Harlequin Teen. She is an auto-buy for me, and I hope that this non-Entangled Publishing released series does well for her.

Casting the Movie – Where Do You Stand?

The debate rages on. And on. And on.

Whenever a book is adapted for either the television or movie screen, there is this strange thing that happens – usually logical, rational and sane people go absolutely nuts over casting choices. Everyone when they read has their own visual interpretation of the characters on the page, and so of course it is impossible to cast the perfect actor that will make everyone happy. There was an outcry when Jennifer Lawrence was cast as The Hunger Games’ Katniss Everdeen – she was too blonde and not skinny enough. Ditto when Josh Hutcherson was cast as Peeta Malark – too short. Too young. Too boyish. Too not Peeta. Of course now, the first movie down and the second on the horizon, it is hard to picture anyone else playing Katniss and Peeta. It seems like the debates never happened.

Screen-shot-2013-05-28-at-7.46.10-PMRight now, there are three major adaptations in varying stages of production (TMI, Divergent, and Vampire Academy), and I am very happy to say I am a fan of all three series (and have read all the books). Things have been pretty quiet on the Vampire Academy front, but it seems that two of them have fans divided by the casting choices – but for different reasons. First up is City of Bones from The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. There was a collective gasp from the fandom when Alex Pettyfer was not cast as Jace Wayland (Herondale. Lightwood. Valentine. Morgenstern? You know who I mean). Did I think Alex Pettyfer had the right look for Jace? Yep. Did I think he was the best actor for the role? Nope.

I was very surprised by the outrage many fans expressed when they found out Jamie Campbell Bower had won the role, however – things got loud, and personal, with many saying that Jamie was too ugly/skinny/strange to play Jace. I didn’t like that, and I thought it crossed the line. Questioning a casting choice is one thing, but insulting the actor is quite another. Jamie wasn’t my first choice, but I have steadily been warming up to him in the role from all of the interviews and clips I have seen. And for the most part, others seem to be much more accepting of him, as well. One of the things I am most impressed by is the fact that Jamie acknowledged the controversy, admitted that he found it both difficult and sometimes painful to deal with – and that it made him work even harder to prove everyone wrong. I liked that, and I respect him for it.

DivergentstillSo, while the Jace controversy seems to be dying down, another one is making the rounds. This one is directed at the casting of Theo James as Four in Veronica Roth‘s Divergent series. The main argument I have seen is that as good looking as he is, as talented as he is – Theo James is just too old. Four is written as an 18 year old, and Theo is in fact 28 (and looks 28, for that matter). I have to say, though, that I am on the other side of this one, since I was thrilled that they skewed older with the actor. I can’t see a teenage boy having the presence and the quiet strength and determination needed to play Four, and as I was reading Divergent I always read him as a few years older than written anyways. Maybe it is because I am a couple of decades past my teenage years (er, and the target audience), but this was a definite win for me. I would actually be less excited if things had worked out the other way.

Where do you stand? Yes or no on Jamie and Theo? Does the “wrong” casting choice change your opinion of seeing the movie, or do you go with the flow and hope for the best?