Saturday, December 31, 2011

Review: Dead on the Delta by Stacey Jay

In a genre overrun with dark, tortured heroines, it is still rare to find those that are truly fucked up. Dark and tortured is often used as wallpaper, an interesting background but with little depth. One thing missing from these types of characters is the self-destructive behavior that can accompany a horrible past.  So, it is invigorating when an author takes into account how tragedy manifests in behavior and goes beyond the angry loner character with a taste for smart ass quips.

Dead on the Delta by Stacey Jay
Annabelle Lee, #1
ISBN13: 9781439189863
ISBN10: 1439189862 
Published May 31st 2011 by Pocket
Grade: B
Blurb: Once upon a time, fairies were the stuff of bedtime stories and sweet dreams. Then came the mutations, and the dreams became nightmares. Mosquito-size fairies now indulge their taste for human blood—and for most humans, a fairy bite means insanity or death. Luckily, Annabelle Lee isn’t most humans. The hard-drinking, smart-mouthed, bicycle-riding redhead is immune to fairy venom, and able to do the dirty work most humans can’t. Including helping law enforcement— and Cane Cooper, the bayou’s sexiest detective—collect evidence when a body is discovered outside the fairy-proof barricades of her Louisiana town.
But Annabelle isn’t equipped to deal with the murder of a sixyear- old girl or a former lover-turned-FBI snob taking an interest in the case. Suddenly her already bumpy relationship with Cane turns even rockier, and even the most trust-worthy friends become suspects. Annabelle’s life is imploding: between relationship drama, a heartbreaking murder investigation, Breeze-crazed drug runners, and a few too many rum and Cokes, Annabelle is a woman on the run—from her past, toward her future, and into the arms of a darkness waiting just for her. . . .

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Free Kate Daniels Novella!

If you're like me, you spent at least part of your holiday reading the new Kate Daniels novella, Magic Gifts.  Wait, what?  You hadn't heard?  Well, Ilona Andrews released it online as gift to readers and its free!  But it is only available for a limited amount of time, so get it while you can.  Two weeks after December 24th, it will no longer be offered.  (It's going to appear as a bonus at the end of Gunmetal Magic but that's not coming out till later in 2012.)  This is a fantastic series that gets better with every book.  SInce the next Kate Daniels book won't be out until 2013 (!!!), this should help take the edge off.

Magic Gifts - Ilona Andrews' blog

Sunday, December 18, 2011

2012 Book Pimpin

Too busy with the holidays to think about 2012?  Don't worry.  Nothing slows my book obsession down.  Here's a few books of note coming out next year to stick on your radar.

Blue Magic (Astrid Lethewood, #2) by A.M. Dellamonica
This powerful sequel to the A.M. Dellamonica's Sunburst Award–winning contemporary fantasy Indigo Springs starts in the small town in Oregon where Astrid Lethewood discovered an underground river of blue liquid—Vitagua—that is pure magic. Everything it touches is changed. The secret is out—and the world will never be the same. Astrid’s best friend, Sahara, has been corrupted by the blue magic, and now leads a cult that seeks to rule the world. Astrid, on the other hand, tries to heal the world.
Conflicting ambitions, star-crossed lovers, and those who fear and hate magic combine in a terrible conflagration, pitting friend against friend, magic against magic, and the power of nations against a small band of zealots, with the fate of the world at stake.
Blue Magic is a powerful story of private lives changed by earthshaking events that will ensnare readers in its poignant tale of a world touched by magic and plagued by its consequences.
Drops April 10, 2012

The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories by Jeff Vandermeer
From Lovecraft to Borges to Gaiman, a century of intrepid literary experimentation has created a corpus of dark and strange stories that transcend all known genre boundaries. Together these stories form The Weird, and its practitioners include some of the greatest names in twentieth and twenty-first century literature.
Exotic and esoteric, The Weird plunges you into dark domains and brings you face to face with surreal monstrosities. You won’t find any elves or wizards here...but you will find the biggest, boldest, and downright most peculiar stories from the last hundred years bound together in the biggest Weird collection ever assembled.
The Weird features 110 stories by an all-star cast, from literary legends to international bestsellers to Booker Prize winners: including William Gibson, George R. R. Martin, Stephen King, Angela Carter, Kelly Link, Franz Kafka, China MiĆ©ville, Clive Barker, Haruki Murakami, M. R. James, Neil Gaiman, Mervyn Peake, and Michael Chabon.
Drops May 8, 2012

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

At BEA 2011, there was a lot of buzz about Tahereh Mafi's debut novel, Shatter Me but because YA is not really my genre, I didn't pay too much attention.  But the buzz continued to grow, reverberating around the blogosphere, with folks swooning left and right over this book and when I happened upon the author signing copies at the New York Comic Con, I snagged one, ready to see if it lived up to the hype.

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Shatter Me, #1
ISBN13: 9780062085481
ISBN10: 0062085484
Published November 15th 2011 by Harper/HarperCollins
Grade: B/B-
Blurb: Juliette hasn't touched anyone in exactly 264 days.
The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette's touch is fatal. As long as she doesn't hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don't fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.
The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war-- and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she's exactly what they need right now.
Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.
In this electrifying debut, Tahereh Mafi presents a world as riveting asThe Hunger Games and a superhero story as thrilling as The X-Men. Full of pulse-pounding romance, intoxicating villainy, and high-stakes choices,Shatter Me is a fresh and original dystopian novel—with a paranormal twist—that will leave readers anxiously awaiting its sequel.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Book Pimpin 2012

My TBR pile just keeps getting larger and larger.  So why do I keep seeking out new and upcoming titles?  What drives me to see what's coming up on the horizon instead of being happy with what I have?  It's 'cause I'm a dreamer, some even say - a visionary.  
(Ok, nobody says that.  Yet.)  
Or maybe it's just that I'm just paranoid I'll miss out on a fabulous book.  Whatever it is that drives my crazy, the end result is what truly matters.  So, here they are - some more upcoming books for 2012.                                                                                                                                                                            
Hex Appeal by P.N. Elrod (editor), Jim Butcher, Carrie Vaughn, Ilona Andrews, and More!
In the magical world that lies hidden beneath our own, witches and conjurers exact sweet revenge on those who dare to cross them. They know just the right spell to punish an ex-boyfriend—and the perfect hex to bring rivals to their knees. But what if you’re the unlucky soul who falls victim to a conjurer’s curse? And if you had the power to cast a magic spell of your own, would you use it?
In this bewitching collection, nine of today’s hottest paranormal authors tell otherworldly tales featuring spell-spinners who cast deadly hexes—and stories of their hapless, and not-so-hapless, victims. Chock full of paranormal hijinx, this fantastic collection will hold readers spellbound—and enchant readers everywhere with its irresistible hex appeal!
Drops June 5, 2012

In this page-turning follow up to Moonshine, it’s summer in the city and most vampires are drunk on the blood-based intoxicant Faust. The mayor has tied his political fortunes to legalizing the brew, but Zephyr Hollis has dedicated herself to the cause of Faust prohibition--at least when she isn’t knocking back sidecars in speakeasies.
But the game changes when dozens of vampires end up in the city morgue after drinking Faust. Are they succumbing to natural causes, or have they been deliberately poisoned? When an anonymous tip convinces the police of her guilt, Zephyr has to save her reputation, her freedom and possibly her life. Someone is after her blood--and this time it isn’t a vampire.
Drops April 10, 2012

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Best Books of the Year Round-Up

So, as the year starts to come to a close,  Best of Lists start popping up everywhere.  Personally, I like reading Best of Lists.  Sometimes I agree with them, sometimes I wonder what the choosers were smoking, and sometimes, I discover a new-to-me author.  (They can also be a good source for holiday gifts.)  So, I thought I'd post some links to various lists around the web. Consider it my gift to you.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Review: Crossroads by Jeanne C. Stein

The Anna Strong series is one that I have always thought of as promising.  I'd enjoyed every book to some extent - they're diverting if not compelling - and I felt like this was a series that was on the verge of being really good.  So what do you do when you realize that you are already up to book 7 and still waiting?   

Crossroads by Jeanne C. Stein
Anna Strong Chronicles, #7
ISBN13: 9780441020775
Published August 30th 2011 by Ace
Grade: C
Blurb: The death of Anna's old vampire mentor is causing ripples in the mortal world. His forensic report has brought up some anomalies and people are asking questions-questions that no vampire wants to answer. Anna needs to lie low, but the sudden discovery of a slew of drained bodies near the Mexican border brings an old flame back into her life and with him, a new challenge. Then, some stunning news from an unexpected source sends Anna and her friend Daniel Frey on a journey that may change both their lives-forever.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Yay! Another Curran Snippet!

As a thanks to readers for voting for her books in the Goodreads Reader's Choice Awards, Ilona Andrews posted another Curran POV snippet over at her blog.  I look forward to these snippets. It's cool to see Curran's take on events and it helps alleviate the wait between Kate Daniels books.  In this latest one, we get the scene where Jim explains to Curran that Kate has some serious daddy issues (and I don't mean the kind that can be solved with therapy.) If your interested, you can check out the snippet at Andrews' blog.

Curran POV