Nell’s Gossip and Book Hunt 8/18/19

 

Welcome to my Sunday book hunt and author gossip.  Keep coming back for updates on book releases and news from favorite authors.

Back with new releases again… they keep writin’ them, we keep readin’ them.

  • I always enjoy Melissa Olson’s books but the Boundary Magic series was especially good.  I’m behind in the series, which is not a surprise.  So many books, so little time…

Title: Boundary Haunted
Author: Melissa F. Olson
Series:  Boundary Magic #5
Release date: December 3, 2019
Description: Months after her battles in Wyoming, Allison “Lex” Luther is still struggling with the aftereffects of the psychic attack she suffered—and with the new developments in her own magic.

Then Lex’s boss, the cardinal vampire of Colorado, passes along a strange request from her counterpart in Atlanta. Hundreds of Civil War spirits have abruptly vanished in Beau Calhoun’s territory, and he wants Lex to figure out why. In exchange, Beau can help her understand boundary magic, which runs in his family line as well.

Despite her trepidation, Lex journeys to the Deep South, where she discovers that ghosts are everywhere…and that her host’s intentions are more complicated than he promised. It seems his teenage descendant is being hunted, and both Beau and Lex fear the young woman’s boundary blood may have made her a target.

With Atlanta’s history looming over her every move, Lex will have to face Beau’s ghosts—and her own—to prevent a boundary magic attack she never dreamed possible.

  • Teresa Gabelman has been on top of her game.  She just released Viktor on April 27, 2019. Next, she’s releasing Tessa’s story on September 9, 2019.  This is the second installment of The Mate Series which is spotlighting each VC Warrior’s spouse and showing, in some cases, that mate/marriage takes work.  And a lot of it.

Title:  Tessa
Author: Teresa Gabelman
Series: The Mate Series
Release date: September 9, 2019
Description: Tessa Pride, mate to VC Warrior Jared Kincaid, is doing everything in her power to become a respected Warrior in her own right. Unfortunately, her mate isn’t quite as excited about her passion. Tessa walks into the role with a newfound sense of determination knowing her decisions could end her relationship with the man she loves.

With everything to lose, Tessa steps into the battle of earning the right to walk next to her mate in life, love, and work. Though she is also ready to walk alone if necessary, she will make sure Jared Kincaid regrets that for the rest of his life.

The Mate series delves into the kickass world of the Warriors’ mates and how united, they can make a difference—just like their badass Protectors. Follow along to see how these exceptional women’s newfound freedom affect those around them and which Warrior may or may not support their feisty independent mate’s new and exciting path.

  • Here’s a listing of The Protector series.  The premise is the same in all the books meaning big bad vampire protecting vulnerable human and then falling in love. I like these books because i like Teresa’s writing style and I like the family unit concept.

The Protectors Series:
Damon – Book #1
Jared – Book #2
Duncan – Book #3
Sid – Book #4
Adam – Book #5
Slade – Book #6
A Warrior Wedding – Book #7
Jax – Book #8
Sloan – Book #9
Blaze – Book #10
The Invisible Warrior – Book #11
Ronan – Book #12
Viktor – Book #13

  • ALERT! ALERT!  NEW TO ME SERIES!

This series was recommended to me by none other than Ruby Lee.  I gotta hand it to her, it looks really good to me. Besides, LOOK AT THAT COVER!!  I haven’t tried it yet, but I’ve got the books in my cart and will click the button any minute.

Title:  Dark Beginnings
Author: Michael Robertson, Jr.
Series: Lance Brody series
Release date: November 10, 2016
Description: From his birth, Lance’s life has been different. With visits from lingering spirits, telepathic whispers, and an uncanny ability to solve the unexplainable, Lance has spent the first twenty-two years of his life in his small hometown, wishing only to be normal. His mother is his most trusted confidant, and together they’ve survived as Lance comes to grips with his gifts, his burdens, and the unsettling knowledge of the darkness that lives among us.

But now, there’s a new evil in town. A darkly powerful duo who’ve arrived and know exactly what Lance is. And they want him for their own.

As Lance’s world is quickly turned upside down and tragedy unfolds, he suddenly learns his purpose may be much larger, and much more dangerous, than he could have ever imagined.

BOOKS IN THE LANCE BRODY SERIES:

0: Dark Beginnings (Prequel Novella)
1: Dark Game
2: Dark Son
2.5: Dark Deception
3: Dark Shore
4: Dark Vacancy

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Book Spotlight The Lady in the Coppergate Tower by Nancy Campbell Allen

One Book Two is spotlighting author  and her new release in the series.  Below is the blog tour sites participating in reviewing this new book:

Title:
The Lady in the Coppergate Tower
Author:
Nancy Campbell Allen
Series:
Steampunk Proper Romance #3
Publisher:
Shadow Mountain Publishing
Release date:  August 6, 2019
DescriptionHazel Hughes has spent her life believing she is a Medium—someone who can talk to ghosts. But as of yet, that skill has remained frustratingly elusive. She is also suffering from a reoccurring childhood dream of someone who looks almost exactly like Hazel, but this dream version of herself is slowly going mad.

Sam MacInnes is a talented surgeon who runs in the highest social circles thanks to his family’s position and history. When Sam hires Hazel to assist him with his medical practice, he is immediately drawn to her intelligence, wit, and beauty.

Their potential relationship is derailed one evening when a mysterious count arrives in London and reveals to Hazel the truth about her past: she was abducted at birth and her twin sister has fallen dangerously ill.

Hazel agrees to travel to Romania with Count Petrescu in order to save her sister, and Sam insists on accompanying her. The count has secrets, though, and the journey grows more sinister with every mile that draws Hazel closer to her homeland. Even as her feelings for Sam become deeper and more complicated, she fears she might not survive the quest to save her sister with her heart intact, not to mention her life. She must learn to draw on gifts she doesn’t know she has if they are going to ever return home again.

Hazel and Sam must fight their way past dark magic, clockwork beasts, and their own insecurities as they try to reach her sister in the impenetrable Coppergate Tower before time runs out.

 

 

(Disclaimer: One Book Two nor does their reviewer receive any credits or reimbursements from the Author or Publisher.

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The Menagerie Trilogy by Rachel Vincent

Much like Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale is a beautiful, fascinating, and timely commentary on gender and economic inequality and religiously-justified politics, Rachel Vincent’s Menagerie trilogy is a beautiful, fascinating, and timely commentary on xenophobia, “otherness,” and our tragic tendency to treat other people as sub-human out of fear, ignorance, and selfishness.

Titles: Menagerie, Spectacle, and Fury
Author: Rachel Vincent
Series: Menagerie Series
First Publish Date: September 29th, 2015, by Harlequin MIRA
Genre: Urban fantasy, dark fantasy
NarratorGabra Zackman
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s Description of MenagerieWhen Delilah Marlow visits a famous traveling carnival, Metzger’s Menagerie, she is an ordinary woman in a not-quite-ordinary world. But under the macabre circus black-top, she discovers a fierce, sharp-clawed creature lurking just beneath her human veneer. Captured and put on exhibition, Delilah in her black swan burlesque costume is stripped of her worldly possessions, including her own name, as she’s forced to “perform” in town after town.

But there is breathtaking beauty behind the seamy and grotesque reality of the carnival. Gallagher, her handler, is as kind as he is cryptic and strong. The other “attractions” — mermaids, minotaurs, gryphons, and kelpies — are strange, yes, but they share a bond forged by the brutal realities of captivity. And as Delilah struggles for her freedom, and for her fellow menagerie, she’ll discover a strength and a purpose she never knew existed.

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Invested Ivana says…

In the world of Rachel Vincent’s Menagerie trilogy, cryptids have always existed—human/animal hybrids of myth and legend, creatures that look human but have inhuman abilities, etc. But it’s a horrible time for them. If they are outed and caught, they are ostracized from society, separated from their families, exploited and bred like beasts, and treated as deadly or evil creatures by humans.

The impetus for this treatment is an event that happened several years prior—a mass killing that occurred all across the globe, committed by creatures that were not human. Rage, fear, and ignorance spurred humans into tormenting all cryptids, believing that one form of cryptid was responsible for the killings.

Delilah Dawson has returned to her hometown after going to school for cryptid zoology in order to understand and care for the various cryptid creatures. Her boyfriends treats her to a trip to the carnival, where a menagerie of cryptids is on display. After watching the brutal treatment of a child werewolf by the menagerie staff, Delilah has an unexpected transformation—and gets labeled a cryptid herself.

This change in Delilah’s status is the real horror and appeal of the series. As a stand-in for the reader, Delilah—a perfectly normal human—suddenly becomes “other,” and the treatment she receives after that point is atrocious. It leads the reader to think, “What if that happened to me?” It reminds us that anything a group of people is allowed to do to others—such as tear children from parents and place them in animal cages—they can eventually do to us. It forces us to recognize the “frog in hot water” phenomenon that many people believe we are living through today.

Delilah, who has learned to view cryptids much the way a sympathetic vet or zoologist views animals, is now forced to see how little difference there is between them and herself. She comes to know them as individuals with the same concerns about their family and survival as she has. And because she had the privilege of a human upbringing and education, she is able to plot and scheme and fight for cryptid rights with more skill and righteous indignation than a cryptid without that privilege.

There are so many timely and relevant themes in this trilogy that it could be great fodder for a book club. At the same time, it is rich, beautiful, sorrowful, devastating, and empowering fantasy fiction and a joy to read. Stories like this one justify the theory that reading can help people be more empathetic, compassionate, and emotionally intelligent because they are “experiencing” events from a point of view other than their own. The audio version, narrated by Gabra Zackman, is fantastic. For me, hearing the characters’ voices really amps up my emotional connection to the story.

And did I mention the ending? Wow! It’s not a happy ending, but it’s not an unhappy ending, either. It’s clever, victorious, sad, and hopeful with a huge dollop of karma, which I adore. But it also leaves the reader with questions: What happens next? What impact does the final event have on the world? Will things get better for cryptids? Those questions go unanswered in the book, indicating that it is up to us how the future goes for everyone who is “other.” We readers have to be the ones to make that better future manifest in our own world.

The Menagerie trilogy is not popcorn fiction, but a significant commentary on the state of humanity in the tradition of The Handmaid’s Tale, Fahrenheit 451, and other great dystopian classics. But it’s also a beautiful, accessible, and highly-entertaining piece of fiction, one that will leave you with some deep thoughts and lots of feels. Five stars for each book.

Poison by Bridget Zinn

Poison is a cute, fast-paced story about a witty girl who tries to assassinate her best friend, the princess, and ends up missing. Now as a fugitive, she’ll have to figure out how to save the kingdom – while getting in a lot of trouble along the way.

Title: Poison
Author: Bridget Zinn
Publish Date:  March 12, 2013
Genre: Young Adult/Fantasy

Publisher’s Description:  Sixteen-year-old Kyra, a highly-skilled potions master, is the only one who knows her kingdom is on the verge of destruction—which means she’s the only one who can save it. Faced with no other choice, Kyra decides to do what she does best: poison the kingdom’s future ruler, who also happens to be her former best friend.

But, for the first time ever, her poisoned dart . . . misses.

Now a fugitive instead of a hero, Kyra is caught in a game of hide-and-seek with the king’s army and her potioner ex-boyfriend, Hal. At least she’s not alone. She’s armed with her vital potions, a too-cute pig, and Fred, the charming adventurer she can’t stop thinking about. Kyra is determined to get herself a second chance (at murder), but will she be able to find and defeat the princess before Hal and the army find her?

Kyra is not your typical murderer, and she’s certainly no damsel-in-distress—she’s the lovable and quick-witted hero of this romantic novel that has all the right ingredients to make teen girls swoon.


Kat Mandu says…

Poison is a cute, fast-paced story about a witty girl who tries to assassinate her best friend, the princess, and ends up missing. Now as a fugitive, she’ll have to figure out how to save the kingdom – while getting in a lot of trouble along the way.

Kira is a potioner, which is basically an alchemist. She’s trained under the best and has an entire arsenal of knowledge, explosives, and poisons at her disposal. Plus, she’s slightly a witch, blessed with the power of sight. When she sees her best friend and princess of the kingdom in a vision, standing over a shattered city of ash, Kira knows she’s got to stop the vision from happening, even if it means killing her best friend.

But she missed her target and now she’s on the run from the law. She knows that if she just finds the real princess, and kills her, the horrible vision she saw won’t come to pass. So she buys a pig that can track down the real princess. But along the way she discovers a handsome, witty guy with a hound dog, and albeit she’s determined not to care, she begins to have feelings for.

To sum things up without spoiling too much, she manages to best the fake princess, put the real bad guy in jail, and live happily ever after.

For me, this was a fun, quick read. Interesting world building, fun characters. Something that had drama, but not tragedy. I picked this up because it looked interesting and quirky. It was, and it’s shame the author is no longer around to enjoy the spoils of accomplishment and adoring fans.

However, as much as it pains me to say it, it just didn’t hold my attention. I found myself starting and stopping too much…. and even worse, I found myself missing that edge of danger and drama that I tend to stray to. This had a lot of adventure, a lot of intrigue. But didn’t have the suspense I was hoping for. I just couldn’t get into it as much as I wanted to.

That being said, this is a wonderfully crafted story. Just perhaps not for me, or perhaps it’s something I’ll read again when I’m looking for something whimsical and fun.
 

 

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Nell’s Gossip and Book Hunt 8/11/19

 

Welcome to my Sunday book hunt and author gossip.  Keep coming back for updates on book releases and news from favorite authors.

Back with new releases again… they keep writin’ them, we keep readin’ them.

 

  • Ok…these aren’t an actual hunts.  It’s more like a stalk.  Kristi Charish is one of my favorite authors and she’s released the cover for VooDoo ShanghaiKincade Strange #3.  I don’t know when it’ll be released.  I don’t know what it’s about.  But…the cover looks great!
  • I think I mentioned that Lisa Shearin is branching out to the paranormal thriller genre.  She’s not leaving SPI Files or Raine Benares – those series will continue.  This new series comes with a title of The Entity Game.  There is no description or cover as it’s in it’s initial edits. Stay tuned for any information.  You’ll get it as soon as I do.
  • Now, an update on Faith Hunter.  Jane Yellowrock #13, Shattered Bonds will be up for preorder sometime in September and that also counts for the audiobook.
  • Faith has also come up with the next Soulwood novel (a/k/a Nell #5).  It’s title is tentatively Spells for the Dead.  If I find out more info, I’ll share it.
  • This year marks the 10 year anniversary that we have been riding with Jane Yellowrock.  I can hardly believe it.  It all started with Skinwalker in 2009. Just keep in mind there aren’t many Jane Yellowrock novels left to write.  I think Faith intends to bring the series to an end at book #14.

 

 

  • Lara Adrian released a new book on July 30th in the Midnight Breed series.

Title:  Break the Day
Author: Lara Adrian
Series:  Midnight Breed #16
Release date:  July 30, 2019
Description: After a shocking betrayal nearly killed him
and the people he cares about the most, what Breed warrior Rafe wants more than anything is revenge against the insidious brotherhood called Opus Nostrum. But to achieve that goal, he must turn his back on the Order and infiltrate a dangerous gang with ties to Opus. Risking everything to redeem himself and carry out his deep-cover mission, Rafe will let nothing stand in his way–least of all his desire for one of the loyalists he should despise, a mysterious, dark-haired beauty named Devony Winters.

But Devony has secrets of her own to protect, as well as a personal duty she will do anything to fulfill. And as a daywalker passing herself off as human to the gang she’s been embedded with for months, the last thing she needs is a dangerous former member of the Order unraveling all her hard work. Her plans depend on keeping Rafe at arm’s length, but if she surrenders to the dark need he stirs within her, it will be her heart that pays the ultimate price.

  • I started reading Steve McHugh in 2012.  His first book is called Crimes Against Magic and I loved it.  He never thought it would be a best seller and rocket his series into more reader’s hands than he imagined. Steve has since finished the Hellequin Chronicles and has started two more new series.  One is the Avalon Chronicles, which I have not read and this new one listed below.  I really need more reading time.  Call my boss, will ya?

Title:  Sorcery Reborn
Author: Steve McHugh
Series: Rebellion #1
Release date: November 28, 2019
Description:  He doesn’t need a weapon. He is the weapon.

After losing his powers in an epic battle between good and evil, former sorcerer Nate Garrett finds himself living as a humble human in Clockwork, Oregon. While the world thinks Nate is dead, his friends continue to fight against Avalon and the evil it’s intent on spreading.

Avalon’s forces turn up in Clockwork, and Nate’s frustration grows with every passing day his magic doesn’t return. He finds himself trying to stop Avalon’s plans while hiding from enemies who would destroy everything in their path to see him dead.

Avalon’s darkness begins to threaten the people Nate cares about, and an old nemesis returns; magic or no magic, he has no choice but to fight. But will Nate see his magical powers reborn before the entire town—and everyone he loves—is destroyed?

 

Until next week……….

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