Category Archives: Supernatural

Books with a supernatural element (vampires etc)

Angela Slatter : Vigil (Review) Blog Tour.

Angela Slatter

Angela Slatter's picture

Specialising in dark fantasy and horror, Angela Slatter is the author of The Girl with No Hands and Other Tales, Sourdough and Other Stories, The Bitterwood Bible and Other Recountings, andBlack-Winged Angels, as well as Midnight and Moonshine and The Female Factory (both with Lisa L. Hannett). She has won five Aurealis Awards, one British Fantasy Award, and a World Fantasy Award, as well as being a finalist for the Norma K. Hemming Award.

Angelas short stories have appeared in Australian, UK and US Best Ofanthologies such The Mammoth Book of New Horror (Stephen Jones, ed.), The Years Best Dark Fantasy and Horror (Paula Guran, ed.), The Best Horror of the Year (Ellen Datlow, ed.), The Years Best Australian Fantasy and Horror(Liz Grzyb and Talie Helene, eds.), and The Years Best YA Speculative Fiction(Alisa Krasnostein and Julia Rios, eds.).

She has an MA and a PhD in Creative Writing, is a graduate of Clarion South 2009 and the Tin House Summer Writers Workshop 2006, and in 2013 she was awarded one of the inaugural Queensland Writers Fellowships.

Her novellas, Of Sorrow and Such (from Tor.com), and Ripper (in the Stephen Jones anthology Horrorology, from Jo Fletcher Books) will be released in October 2015.

Angelas urban fantasy novel, Vigil (based on the short story Brisneyland byNight), will be released by Jo Fletcher Books in 2016, and the sequel,Corpselight, in 2017. She is represented by Ian Drury of the literary agency Sheil Land.

 Blog tour poster
Vigil  (2016) (The first book in the Vigil series)
vigil

Verity Fassbinder has her feet in two worlds.

The daughter of one human and one Weyrd parent, she has very little power herself, but does claim unusual strength – and the ability to walk between us and the other – as a couple of her talents. As such a rarity, she is charged with keeping the peace between both races, and ensuring the Weyrd remain hidden from us.

But now Sirens are dying, illegal wine made from the tears of human children is for sale – and in the hands of those Weyrd who hold with the old ways – and someone has released an unknown and terrifyingly destructive force on the streets of Brisbane.

And Verity must investigate – or risk ancient forces carving our world apart.

Review
I couldn’t resist reading this when the kind people at Jo Fletcher asked me if i would be part of the blog tour, the cover art alone is totally intriguing, that angelic, yet slightly disturbing image, something added to when you hold the book, not sure if its intentional but it has a waxy, almost slightly slimy quality to it which adds to the weyrd nature of the book.
When reading the book i could not help but make some comparisons to the first time i read Ben Aaronivitch, that sense of something a bit different but also something excellent in the making. While Vigil lacks the humour of Ben’s books (its supposed to)  it has a much more open and in your face Weyrd world, which requires more from the author in making the real world and the Weyrd blend and work hand in hand.
Angela Slatter managed it perfectly, not only did the narrative flow, but it was believable. Thats not an easy thing to accomplish when talking about Sirens, angels, boatmen and many other creatures of Weyrd origin.
Using a half breed (Verity Fassbinder) to cross the boundaries between worlds is a stroke of genius, an understanding of both worlds, and yet retaining that outsider hero element. Every chapter pulled… drove you to the next. I was forcing myself to put it down every night, wanting to see how all the threads of this plot would pull together, so i could finally see the whole Machiavellian plot that the author had kept shrouded until the end.
This series has huge potential for a long run, the characters have so much rich history (not just Verity) there are creatures as ancient as time, knowledge stretching over centuries all of which will lead to some very twisted ideas. The location was exotic and yet familiar, and the clash of normal to Weyrd culture so apt with all the modern culture clashes that the whole book resonates with the reader on a very real level (which is a surprise given the story). Bring on book 2…and 3 and many more.
(Parm)

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Jasper Kent: The last Rite (review)

Jasper Kent

Jasper Kent's picture
UK (1968 – )

Jasper Kent was born in Worcestershire, England in 1968. He attended King Edward’s School, Birmingham and went on to study Natural Sciences at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, specialising in physics.

Jasper has spent almost twenty years working as a software engineer in the UK and in Europe, whilst also working on writing both fiction and music. In that time, he has produced the novels Twelve, Thirteen Years Later, Yours Etc., Mr Sunday and Sifr, as well as co-writing several musicals, including The Promised Land and Remember! Remember!

He currently lives in Brighton, with eight rats called Manjula, Lurleen, Alecto, Nyssa, Isolde, Polly, Messalina and Maude, and a person called Helen.

The Last Rite  (2014) 
(The fifth book in the Danilov Quintet series)

Book Description:

Buy the paperback

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Russia – 1917. Zmyeevich, king of all vampires, is dead.

History records that the great voordalak – known across Europe as Dracula – perished in 1893 beneath the ramparts of his own castle, deep in the mountains of Wallachia. In Russia, the Romanov tsars are free of the curse that has plagued their blood for two centuries.

But two decades later and Tsar Nicholas II faces a new threat – a threat from his own people. War has brought Russia to her knees and the people are hungry for change. Revolution is in the air.

Mihail Konstantinovich Danilov – who himself carries Romanov blood – welcomes the prospect of a new regime. Like his ancestors he once fought to save the Romanovs from the threat that Zmyeevich brought them. Fought and won. But now he sees no future for a Russia ruled by a tyrant. He is joined in the struggle by his uncle, Dmitry Alekseevich – a creature born in a different era, over a century before. For more than half his existence he has been a vampire, and yet he still harbours one very human desire; that his country should be free.

But the curse that infects the blood of the Romanovs cannot be so easily forgotten and Mihail soon discovers that it – that he – may become the means by which a terror once thought eradicated might be resurrected . . .

Review

The series so far has been thoroughly dark and entertaining, I had high hopes for the grand finale and what ever Jasper Kent had in store for us, as with the other four books in the series he did not disappoint.

Set during the Russian Revolution a period of dark change, intrigue, betrayal and want in a nation thoroughly torn by the rise of the Bolsheviks and the decline of the Tsarist empire. Jasper Kent continues in the same vein as the rest of the series and concentrates his story and his view on the immediate, those things that impact the everyday man rather than the momentous events of history, this I know has been a point of concern with some readers, but it works for me, the immediacy it creates is worth the loss of the wider history.

The central character of  Mihal Danilov, a man who has lived a life dedicated to the eradication of all vampire kind gives a fatalistic, very Russian outlook on his country  and his role in life. Sometimes that fatalistic view drags on the pace of the plot but the counter POV (which you will have to read the book to find out whom…or i fear i will give spoilers) provides the perfect foil and opposing view to drive the reader forward to an unexpected and thrilling conclusion.

By creating a mix of well researched Russian historical fiction with the authors own take on the  Vampire culture Jasper Kent has created something unique, and thoroughly enjoyable!

(Parm)

Series
Danilov Quintet
1. Twelve (2009)
2. Thirteen Years Later (2010)
3. The Third Section (2011)
4. The People’s Will (2013)
5. The Last Rite (2014)
aka The Last Oprichnik

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Filed under Historical Fiction, Jasper Kent, Supernatural

Sarah Lotz : Day Four (Review)

Sarah Lotz

South Africa
aka S L Grey, Lily Herne, Helena S Paige

Sarah Lotz is a screenwriter and novelist who pens urban horror novels under the name S.L Grey with author Louis Greenberg, YA zombie novels with her daughter, as Lily Herne, and is one third of pseudonymous erotica author Helena S. Paige. She lives in Cape Town with her family and other animals.

Book Description

Day Four

The trip of their dreams becomes the holiday of their nightmares: DAY FOUR is Sarah Lotz’s extraordinary, unmissable follow-up to the book that made headlines around the world, THE THREE – perfect for fans of The Shining Girls, The Passage and Lost. Four days into a five day singles cruise on the Gulf of Mexico, the ageing ship Beautiful Dreamer stops dead in the water. With no electricity and no cellular signals, the passengers and crew have no way to call for help. But everyone is certain that rescue teams will come looking for them soon. All they have to do is wait. That is, until the toilets stop working and the food begins to run out. When the body of a woman is discovered in her cabin the passengers start to panic. There’s a murderer on board the Beautiful Dreamer…and maybe something worse.

Review

Day Four is certainly not my normal reading fare, I’m not a fan of horror flicks and tend to avoid the sort of program that messes with your head. But Three was such a good book that it broke the mold for this genre, for me it sits somewhere between supernatural and thriller. Day Four didn’t disappoint and yet its a very different novel… i think the title lends the appearance of a sequel… it is in only the most tenuous way.

The plot is set aboard the Beautiful Dreamer, a budget cruise ship which gets stranded at sea. The story unfolds amidst the drama of various groups coping with the uncertainty of a bleak open calm sea and no sign of rescue, coupled with  day after day of banal updates from “Damien” the crew director. Updates designed to keep passengers mollified but seem to just confirm that they are not going to be rescued. As conditions grow increasingly more rank and odorous, the passengers grow more and more desperate and order breaks down. Couple this with the desperate passengers who become more and more spooked by inexplicable shadowy figures and a distinctly fake showbiz medium suddenly gaining a habit of accurate predictions.

Day Four isn’t a lovable book, the passengers in general are what we all despise in modern society, the idle, the privileged over entitled middle class basting themselves in the sun, treating staff like serfs. When things go wrong and people are left to fend for themselves its all lord of the flies… and with the volume of poop…lots of flies. There is room in this carnage however for some very insightful engaging characters some engaging personalities among all the detritus of humanity.  This is a book of clever description that plays out in the mind of the reader, the rank smells and dire straights that crew and passenger alike are in, seeps off the page, such is the skill of the writer.
I recommend it as a read, its not The Three… its different… good different though.
(Parm)
New Books
Novels
The Three (2014)
Day Four (2015)
Pompidou Posse (2015)
Collections
Dark Harvest (2014) (with Toby Bennett, Amy Lee Burgess, Autumn Christian, Sonya Clark, Carrie Clevenger, Nerine Dorman, Rab Swannock Fulton, D C Petterson, Anna Reith, Liz Strange and Donn Webb)
SL Grey
Novels
The Mall (2011)
The Ward (2012)
The New Girl (2013)
Underground (2015)
House Swap (2016)
Collections
The Lowest Heaven (2013) (with Archie Black, David Bryher, Jon Courtenay-Grimwood, Maria Dahvana Headley, Kameron Hurley, Sophia McDougall, Simon Morden, Mark Charan Newton, Alastair Reynolds, Adam Roberts, Esther Saxey, Jared Shurin, E J Swift, Lavie Tidhar and Kaaron Warren)

Lily Herne

Series
Deadlands
1. Deadlands (2013)
2. Death of a Saint (2013)
3. The Army Of The Lost (2014)
Novels
Ash Remains (2016)
Helena S Paige
Novels
A Girl Walks Into a Bar (2013)
A Girl Walks Into a Wedding (2013)
A Girl Walks into a Blind Date (2014)

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Filed under Sarah Lotz, Supernatural

James Rollins / Rebecca Cantrell Blood Infernal (Review)

The Author’s

James Rollins

rollins

JAMES ROLLINS is the New York Times bestselling author of international thrillers, translated into more than forty languages.  His Sigma series has been lauded as one of the “top crowd pleasers” (New York Times) and one of the “hottest summer reads” (People Magazine). In each novel, acclaimed for its originality, Rollins unveils unseen worlds, scientific breakthroughs, and historical secrets–and he does it all at breakneck speed and with stunning insight. James Rollins decided to become a writer as a boy immersed in the scientific adventures of Doc Savage, the wonders of Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, and pulps such as The Shadow, The Spider, and The Avenger. He honed his storytelling skills early, spinning elaborate tales that were often at the heart of pranks played on his brothers and sisters.

Although his talent emerged and grew, writing was not James’ original profession. Before he would set heroes and villains on harrowing adventures, he embarked on a career in veterinary medicine, graduating from the University of Missouri and establishing a successful veterinary. This hands-on knowledge of medicine and science helps shape the research and scientific speculation that set James Rollins books apart.

The exotic locales of James Rollins novels have emerged as a hybrid between imagination, research, and James’ extensive travels throughout the United States and Europe, as well as New Zealand, the South Pacific, China, Southeast Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America. Recent travel includes book tours and stops across the country and several European nations to meet readers and give talks, seminars, and media interviews.

In recent years, much of James’ travel has involved meeting readers in small and large groups, at writing and fan conferences, and even aboard seagoing “seminars.” James’ mentoring temperament and coaching skills have made him a sought-out writing instructor and guest speaker for workshops, symposia, conventions, and other forums throughout the country. He is among the core faculty of the annual Maui Writer’s Conference and Retreat.

James Rollins is the author of seven thrillers in the bestselling Sigma Force series (Sandstorm, Map of Bones, Black Order, The Judas Strain, The Last Oracle, The Doomsday Key, and The Devil Colony); six individual adventure thrillers; the blockbuster movie novelization, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull; and the Jake Ransom middle grade series (Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow, Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx, and more coming in 2013). The eighth Sigma Force adventure, Bloodline, is coming in Summer 2012.

In 2005, James joined other luminaries in the genre to create the International Thriller Writers, Inc. ITW recognizes and promotes the thriller genre, provides opportunities for mentoring, education, and collegiality among authors and industry professionals, and grants awards for excellence in thriller writing. James is currently the Co-President of ITW, serving alongside Steve Berry. (From Author’s Bio)

Rebecca Cantrell

Rebecca Cantrell

 Rebecca Cantrell’s Hannah Vogel mystery/thriller novels have won the Bruce Alexander and Macavity awards and been nominated for the Barry and RT Reviewers Choice awards; her critically-acclaimed cell phone novel, iDrakula, was nominated for the APPY award and listed on Booklist’s Top 10 Horror Fiction for Youth. She and her husband and son just left Hawaii’s sunny shores for adventures in Berlin. Find Rebecca Cantrell on Facebook, Twitter, and at Authors Website.

 

Blood Infernal

(2015)
(The third book in the Order of the Sanguines series)
A novel by Rebecca Cantrell and James Rollins

Blood infernal

As an escalating scourge of grisly murders sweeps the globe, archaeologist Erin Granger must decipher the truth behind an immortal prophecy foretold in the Blood Gospel, a tome written by Christ and lost for centuries: The shackles of Lucifer have been loosened, and his Chalice remains lost. It will take the light of all three to forge the Chalice anew and banish him again to his eternal darkness. With the Apocalypse looming, Erin must again join forces with Army Sergeant Jordan Stone and Father Rhun Korza to search for a treasure lost for millennia. But the prize has already fallen into the hands of their enemy, a demon named Legion, before whom even the walls of the Vatican will fall.

The search for the key to salvation will take Erin and the others across centuries and around the world, from the dusty shelves of the Vatican’s secret archives to lost medieval laboratories, where ancient alchemies were employed to horrific ends. All the while, they are hunted, besieged by creatures of uncanny skill and talent. As clues are dug free from ancient underground chapels and found frozen in icy mountain caverns, Erin will discover that the only hope for victory lies in an impossible act–one that will destroy not only her, but all she loves. To protect the world, Erin must walk through the very gates of Hell and face the darkest of enemies: Lucifer himself.

With The Blood Gospel, the first novel in the Order of the Sanguines series, James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell combined science, myth, and religion to introduce a breathtaking world where miracles hold new meaning and the fight for good over evil is far more complicated than we ever dreamed. And now, in this epic conclusion to the Sanguines trilogy, Blood Infernal, they take us to the very pit of Hell itself, making us peer into the abyss and face our greatest fears, to answer the ultimate question: what price will we pay for true salvation?

Review

When i first heard about this series i worried that it was just another vampire series, that it might be a bit of true blood band wagon jumping. But books 1&2 soon put paid to that. This book 3 is a bitter sweet experience, endings are always tough with a really good series, and this is one that has been a favorite for a couple of years, ending can however be complicated, can the author (s) get it right?

Yes is the answer, James Rollins is one of my favorite thriller writers, and having read Rebecca Cantrell’s Tesla books i can see the where and why the blending of talents has worked so well. Its not that one is better than the other, its similar to when Feist and Wurts got together and wrote the empire trilogy, a set of books that took both authors beyond their normal writing. This is what i feel has happened again here.

Each and every book in this series has been an original action packed supernatural thriller and Blood Infernal is no different. But more important its a fitting and sublime end to a wonderful series. In any thriller like this there is a risk of going OTT, of taking the action beyond the mildly plausible, even with the supernatural you need to avoid that risk. Both these authors avoid doing that with style and panache, keeping the reader on the edge of their seat through-out. So many teasing tit bits from biblical myth brought forth and used in this story, so much action and so much energy and emotion. The characters will make you laugh and cry out in surprise, gasp and sob in anguish. Its going to be up there with my favorite books at the end of this year.

Very highly recommended for this book and this splendid series.

(Parm)

Series
Sigma Force
1. Sandstorm (2004)
2. Map of Bones (2005)
3. Black Order (2006)
4. The Judas Strain (2007)
5. The Last Oracle (2008)
6. The Doomsday Key (2009)
6.5. The Skeleton Key (2011)
7. The Devil Colony (2010)
7.5. Tracker (2012)
8. Bloodline (2012)
9. The Eye of God (2013)
10. The Sixth Extinction (2014)
11. The Bone Labyrinth (2015)
The Doomsday Key / The Last Oracle (omnibus) (2011)
The Sigma Force Novels (omnibus) (2013)
Sigma Force Novels 1 (omnibus) (2014)
SandstormMap of BonesBlack OrderThe Judas Strain
The Last OracleThe Doomsday KeyThe Skeleton KeyThe Devil Colony
TrackerBloodlineThe Eye of GodThe Sixth Extinction
The Doomsday Key / The Last OracleThe Sigma Force NovelsSigma Force Novels 1
Jake Ransom
1. Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow (2009)
2. Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx (2010)
Jake Ransom Complete Collection (omnibus) (2014)
Jake Ransom and the Skull King's ShadowJake Ransom and the Howling SphinxJake Ransom Complete Collection
Order of the Sanguines (with Rebecca Cantrell)
0.5. City of Screams (2012)
1. The Blood Gospel (2013)
1.5. Blood Brothers (2013)
2. Innocent Blood (2013)
3. Blood Infernal (2015)
City of ScreamsThe Blood GospelBlood BrothersInnocent BloodBlood Infernal
Tucker Wayne (with Grant Blackwood)
1. The Kill Switch (2014)
2. War Hawk (2015)
The Kill Switch
Novels
Subterranean (1999)
Excavation (2000)
Deep Fathom (2001)
Amazonia (2002)
Ice Hunt (2003)
Altar of Eden (2009)
SubterraneanExcavationDeep FathomAmazoniaIce HuntAltar of Eden
Novellas
The Devil’s Bones: Cotton Malone vs. Gray Pierce (2014)(with Steve Berry)
The Devil's Bones: Cotton Malone vs. Gray Pierce
Series contributed to
Indiana Jones (Films)
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull(2008)
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

 

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Filed under Action/ Adventure Thrillers, James Rollins, Rebecca Cantrell, Supernatural, Thrillers

2015: Titles i hope to review….

Every year around this time i post a list of books that i would like to review… its only ever a starter for 10, it only includes the ones i know, there are many i don’t, many that will be a surprise: Its a line in the sand (and maybe a hint for the lovely publishers 😉

I hope it also helps my fellow readers and bloggers know what is coming…..

Title Author Publisher Date
Rain on the Dead Jack Higgins Putnam 30/12/2014
The Providence of Fire: Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne: Book Two Brian Staveley Tor 15/01/2015
The Last Roman: Honour Jack Ludlow Allison & Busby 22/01/2015
The Mime Order (The Bone Season) Samantha Shannon Bloomsbury 27/01/2015
Blood Infernal: The Order of the Sanguines Series James Rollins, Rebecca Cantrell William Morrow 10/02/2015
Guns of the Dawn Adrian Tchaikovsky Tor 12/02/2015
The Autumn Republic (Powder Mage trilogy) Brian McClellan Orbit 12/02/2015
Master of War: Defiant Unto Death David Gilman Head of Zeus 12/02/2015
Kings and Emperors: An Alan Lewrie Naval Adventure (Alan Lewrie Naval Adventures) Dewey Lambdin Thomas Dunne 24/02/2015
Fields of Wrath: A Renshai Novel Mickey Zucker Reichert DAW 24/02/2015
Wings of the Storm Giles Kristian Bantam 25/02/2015
Those Above (The Empty Throne) Daniel Polansky Hodder 26/02/2015
Gallow: The Anvil Nathan Hawke Gollancz 26/02/2015
The Boy Who Wept Blood (Erebus Sequence 2) Den Patrick Gollancz 28/02/2015
Maximus Richard L. Black Shadow Mountain 03/03/2015
Rome’s Lost Son: Vespasian VI Robert Fabbri Atlantic Books 05/03/2015
Tom Swan and the Siege of Belgrade: Part Four Christian Cameron Orion 12/03/2015
The Assassin (Isaac Bell Series) Clive Cussler Michael Joseph 12/03/2015
Sword Of The North (The Grim Company) Luke Scull Head of Zeus 12/03/2015
Empire of the Moghul: Traitors in the Shadows Alex Rutherford Headline 09/04/2015
Eagles at War: (Eagles of Rome 1) Ben Kane Preface 09/04/2015
Tom Swan and the Siege of Belgrade: Part Five Christian Cameron Orion 09/04/2015
Gallow: Solace Nathan Hawke Gollancz 09/04/2015
The Skull Throne (The Demon Cycle, Book 4) Peter V. Brett Harper Voyager 09/04/2015
The Patriot Threat (Cotton Malone) Steve Berry Hodder 09/04/2015
Thunder of the Gods (Empire) Anthony Riches Hodder 16/04/2015
The Curse of Anne Boleyn C C Humphreys May-15
Keane’s Charge Iain Gale Heron Books 07/05/2015
At the Ruin of the World John Henry Clay Hodder 07/05/2015
At the Ruin of the World John Henry Clay Hodder 07/05/2015
Absolution (The Carnivia Trilogy) Jonathan Holt Head of Zeus 07/05/2015
The Girl Who Walked Into The Fire Manda Scott Bantam 07/05/2015
The Watchman of Eternity Paul Witcover Bantam 07/05/2015
The Seeker (Damian Seeker 1) S. G. MacLean Quercus 07/05/2015
Solomon Creed Simon Toyne Harper Collins 07/05/2015
Black River Tom Harper Hodder 07/05/2015
Tom Swan and the Siege of Belgrade: Part Six Christian Cameron Orion 14/05/2015
Blood and Steel (Throne of the Caesars, Book 2) Harry Sidebottom Harper Collins 21/05/2015
Piranha (Oregon Files) Clive Cussler Putnam 26/05/2015
Greatcoat’s Lament Sebastien De Castell Jo Fletcher 02/06/2015
Tintagel Book 1 M. K. Hume Headline 04/06/2015
Whose Business is to Die Adrian Goldsworthy W&N 11/06/2015
The King’s Assassin Angus Donald Sphere 15/06/2015
The Liar’s Key (Red Queen’s War, Book 2) Mark Lawrence Harper Voyager 18/06/2015
Queen of Fire: Book 3 of Raven’s Shadow Anthony Ryan Orbit 02/07/2015
The Bone Labyrinth: A Sigma Force Novel (Sigma Force Novels) James Rollins William Morrow 02/07/2015
Uprooted Naomi Novak Tor 02/07/2015
The Immortal Throne Stella Gemmell Bantam 02/07/2015
Kingmaker 2: Betrayal Toby Clements Century 02/07/2015
The Insider Threat: A Pike Logan Thriller Brad Taylor Dutton 07/07/2015
Wars of the Roses: Margaret of Anjou Conn Iggulden Putnam 16/07/2015
The Madagaskar Plan Guy Saville Hodder 16/07/2015
Ruin John Gwynne Tor 16/07/2015
Ruin John Gwynne Tor 16/07/2015
Marston Moor (The Civil War Chronicles) Michael Arnold Hodder 16/07/2015
Half a War (Shattered Sea) Joe Abercrombie Harper Voyager 28/07/2015
Hereward: The Immortals: (Hereward 5) James Wilde Bantam 30/07/2015
Vanishing Games Roger Hobbs DoubleDay 30/07/2015
The Protector S.J. Deas Headline 30/07/2015
Saxon: The Pope’s Assassin Tim Severin Macmillan 30/07/2015
The Eternal World Christopher Farnsworth William Morrow 04/08/2015
Salamis Christian Cameron Orion 13/08/2015
Fool’s Quest (Fitz and the Fool, Book 2) Robin Hobb Harper Voyager 13/08/2015
Sword of Apollo Noble Smith Thomas Dunne 18/08/2015
Scourge of Rome: Gaius Valerius Verrens 6 Douglas Jackson Bantam 27/08/2015
A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms George R. R. Martin Harper Voyager 06/10/2015
The Prisoner’s Gold (The Hunters 3) Chris Kuzneski Headline 08/10/2015
The City of Mirrors Justin Cronin Orion 08/10/2015
The Hanging Tree Ben Aaronovitch Gollancz 19/11/2015
War Hawk James Rollins, Grant Blackwood Orion 07/01/2016
Fire C C Humphreys Century 05/05/2016
King of Ashes (The War of Five Crowns, Book 1) Raymond E. Feist Harper Voyager 05/05/2016
The Ember in the Ashes: The Book and the Sword: 2 Antoine Rouaud Gollancz 16/06/2016
Robin Hobb Untitled 3 (Fitz and the Fool, Book 3) Robin Hobb Harper Voyager 14/07/2016

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Filed under Action/ Adventure Thrillers, Crime, Dystopian, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Non Fiction, Supernatural, Thrillers, Young Adult

Parmenion Books 2014 : The best books i have read this year.

As i do every year i have struggled and struggled with this list. How do you compile it, who goes in it etc… There are so so many great books in 2014 and many many authors not mentioned who deserve a mention, EG: Paul Collard, Anthony Riches, Douglas Jackson, SJA Turney, Robert Fabbri, Michael Arnold, Ben Kane, Nick Brown, Conn Iggulden, Simon Scarrow, Alex Scarrow, Harry Sidebottom, Angus Donald, Andy McDermott, Sam Sykes, SJ Deas/Nathan Hawke, James Wilde … see what i mean!!

There was a new Robin Hobb this year, CC Humphreys produced another splendid book, The very underrated Noble Smith had his second book out, there were some debuts that blew me away, inc I.D Roberts and Kingdom Lock and Toby Clements Kingmaker… If someone could figure out how i could just sit and read and still earn a living please let me know… because keeping up with all these amazing writers is becoming a full time gig, i think at last count i have read 127 books this year (and i still have time to get over the 130 mark).

Best of the year.

Best Short Story

Part Three (2013)

Tom Swan: Christian Cameron Blog Review

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Print Length: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Orion (20 Nov 2014)

Best Short Story/ Novella Honourable Mention

Murder at KH

Murder at the Kinnen Hotel Brian McClellen Blog Review

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Print Length: 74 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.

Best Compilation:

DOF

Day of Fire: Stephanie Dray, Ben Kane, E. Knight, Sophie Perinot, Kate Quinn, Vicky Alvear Shecter Blog Review

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Print Length: 340 pages
  • Publisher: Knight Media, LLC (4 Nov 2014)

 Best Fantasy (Joint Winner)

The Incorruptables

The Incorruptibles: John Horner Blog Review

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz (14 Aug 2014)

One of the splendid debuts this year, incredible world building.

Fools

Prince of Fools : Mark Lawrence Blog Review

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager (5 Jun 2014)

First in a wonderful new series, by a man who is a master of the genre (and a bloomin nice chap too)

 Best Historical Fiction

GoV

God of Vengeance : Giles Kristian Blog Review

Trailer Shoot (Behind the Scenes)

Book Trailer

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam Press (24 April 2014)

(many will note that I have not picked a Christian Cameron book for best Historical Fiction, it was a deliberate omission to allow others to shine forth. Both Long War and Great King are books that could have sat along side this title, But i felt that God of Vengeance deserved to shave it on pure merit, it’s a stupendous piece of writing. Giles writing has a poetic almost musical quality even when the blood is flying and the swords are singing, hence my winner)

 Best Crime

abduction

The Abduction: Jonathan Holt Blog Review

A very evocative crime thriller, transports the reader.

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Head of Zeus (8 May 2014)

Best SCi Fi

red rising

Red Rising: Pierce Brown Blog Review

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (28 Jan 2014)

One of the best debuts i have ever read.

 Best Action Adventure

Ptramid+Headline+jacket

Pyramid: David Gibbins Blog Review

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Headline (6 Nov 2014)

A man who lives his craft, he is Jack Howard, and it shows on every page.

 Best Debut

traitors blade

Traitors Blade: Sebastian De Castell Blog Review

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Jo Fletcher Books (6 Mar 2014)

The Dumas for the fantasy genre, and a stupendous debut.

Best Young Adult

half a king US Half a King UK

Half a King: Joe abercrombie Blog Review

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager; 1st edition (3 July 2014)

People said Joe Abercrombie couldn’t write Young Adult…. oh so wrong.

 Non Book Highlights

53a 2014-06-16 18.02.10

Thorkil Jewellery Blog Review

A master craftsman, bringing the past to life using very old tools and skills.

2014: Book that affected me the most:

goldenred rising

To be Honest it is Golden Son by Pierce Brown, but technically that a 2015 release, so I will instead choose Red Rising. I really do NOT like SCiFi, fantasy, history,crime etc… love it, most genres I really enjoy, I watch SciFi, but I cannot read it. Yet Red Rising  (and Golden Son) had me in their grip from first page to last. I enjoyed them immensley. Pierce Brown is a very very talented man.

Blog Review (Golden Son)

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (8 Jan 2015)

I look forward to sharing 2015 with you all, publishers, readers, reviewers, everyone. this is a hobby that gives and gives, i hope im giving back in some small way.

(Parm)

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Filed under Action/ Adventure Thrillers, Crime, Dystopian, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Supernatural, Thrillers, Uncategorized, Young Adult

Ben Aaronovitch Foxglove Summer (Review)

ben

 

Ben Denis Aaronovitch is a London-born British writer who has worked on television series including Doctor Who, Casualty, Jupiter Moon and Dark Knight. He is the younger brother of actor Owen Aaronovitch and British journalist David Aaronovitch.

Description

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In the fifth of his bestselling series Ben Aaronovitch takes Peter Grant out of whatever comfort zone he might have found and takes him out of London – to a small village in Herefordshire where the local police are reluctant to admit that there might be a supernatural element to the disappearance of some local children. But while you can take the London copper out of London you can’t take the London out of the copper.

Travelling west with Beverley Brook, Peter soon finds himself caught up in a deep mystery and having to tackle local cops and local gods. And what’s more all the shops are closed by 4pm

Review

I’m a big fan of this series, ever since the very first book its been utterly original, witty, clever and a riveting read. Foxglove Summer was the same and yet a different experience for me to a certain degree, the usual wit was there, and moving the story out of London added a new element, a different edge to the plot, and for much of the book i was utterly riveted, i had read the whole book in 2 nights (and given that’s just bed time reading that’s fast).

What threw me in the book was that it didn’t feel like it had the same complexity and depth that the previous books have had. despite Peter being allowed off the leash by Nightingale, and that Beverly is there leading him astray again, and Lesley is poking her nose in at the wings, I still felt that there was a layer a dimension to the complexity that was missing, an element of that clever wordsmith(erey) that the author portrays in this series that just didn’t feel like it was there.  And the bit that really let me down was the ending, lt felt like the end of an episode left unfinished in a TV series, the final chapter rushed to a conclusion as if there was a need to finish by a specific date or word count rather than complete the story. But despite that im still left in awe of the writers skill, with so many questions i would like to ask, and hope will be answered in the next book, and there are so many teasers for the world of the fae and the world of magic, we have still only just taken the top layer off, each book giving a little bit more of a glimpse and that’s the beauty of reading the story through Peter Grants eyes, we learn as he learns.

If this was any other author and any other series this would get a 3/5, but a ruined ending does not ruin the story, the incredible characters, the totally original plot line and depth of imagination the author displays. so 4/5 and i hope book 6 is solid all the way to a full conclusion.

a series i will always recommend

(Parm)

 

Series

 

Peter Grant
1. Rivers of London (2011)
aka Midnight Riot
2. Moon Over Soho (2011)
3. Whispers Under Ground (2012)
4. Broken Homes (2013)
5. Foxglove Summer (2014)
6. The Hanging Tree (2015)
P C Grant Novels: Rivers of London / Moon Over Soho / Whispers Under Ground (omnibus) (2013)
Rivers of LondonMoon Over SohoWhispers Under GroundBroken HomesFoxglove Summer
P C Grant Novels: Rivers of London / Moon Over Soho / Whispers Under Ground

 

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Filed under Ben Aaronovitch, Crime, Fantasy, Supernatural