Guest Post: Shared Settings by Marshall Ryan Maresca
Guest Post / October 3, 2017

Today we are happy to welcome Marshall Ryan Maresca to The Speculative Herald. His latest book, The Imposters of Aventil, releases today (October 3, 2017) and is the final book in the Maradaine trilogy, but also ties in with another one of his current series, which share a setting. Mr. Maresca was kind enough to share a blog post about what makes shared settings work. Also, if you have not yet started this series, don’t forget to enter the GIVEAWAY below! DAW was kind enough to offer up one copy of the first book, The Thorn of Dentonhill, for a giveaway! (Who doesn’t want to read about a vigilante magic student??) Shared Settings and The Imposters of Aventil  By Marshall Ryan Maresca   The Imposters of Aventil is the third Novel of Maradaine.  It’s also the sixth novel set in the city of Maradaine, because the “Novels of Maradaine” is just one of the three series set in that fantastical, magical clockpunk city.   Of late— by which I mean in the past decade— we’ve seen a lot more of the idea of several different series taking place in a shared universe.  It really is nothing new, but like many things in…

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7/10
Review: Imposters of Aventil by Marshall Ryan Maresca
Reviews / September 25, 2017

Imposters of Aventil carries forward with the fun and excitement I’ve come to expect from the Maradaine series. The Thorn has a habit of getting himself in compromising positions sometimes, and bending (OK, maybe breaking) the law to suit his end purpose fighting the drug trade. But in this, he finds himself the suspect in cases he has nothing to do with. There is an imposter who is using the guise of the Thorn while stirring up trouble with both the constabulary, but also the gangs. Effate also appears to have made its way onto campus. Both of these things make Veranix’s work as the Thorn considerably more dangerous, but also motivates him. Like he needed more motivation to fight the effate drug trade! Previously I have said that I think Maresca’s series could be read independently and in any order. I mean, I guess you still could, but with this book I would no longer recommend it. This may be the third book in the Maradaine series, but it prominently features Minox and Satrine from the Constabulary series and knowing their background makes this book feel more complete and satisfying. For example, the Constabulary series provides the reader with…

Cover Reveal: The Imposters of Aventil by Marshall Ryan Maresca
Cover Reveal / April 7, 2017

We here at The Speculative Herald a definite fans of the Maradaine series, so we are thrilled to be hosting the cover reveal today for Marshall Ryan Maresca’s upcoming release, The Imposters of Aventil. For those unfamiliar, Maresca currently has 3 parallel series in the same world, city, time frame, but the are executed in a way they can easily be read independently from one another and in any order (at least so far). The Imposters of Aventil is the conclusion of the original Maradaine trilogy, and I’m really excited to for it. Now, for the cover! Once again, we get those wonderful pops of color that make this series stand out on the shelves! I love all the action going on, and that if features the Thorn’s rope (and arrows). Now I just can’t wait to read it!!   So here it is! The Imposters of Aventil Cover  Here’s a look at all the covers in the series together     About the Book Blending vigilante justice with epic fantasy, this third Maradaine novel finds student Veranix Calbert returning to fight crime • “Veranix is Batman, if Batman were a teenager and magically talented.” —Library Journal Summer and the…

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8/10
Review: The Holver Alley Crew by Marshall Ryan Maresca
Reviews / March 7, 2017

Holver Alley Crew is the first book in a new series by Marshall Ryan Maresca. I have to say, I find this publishing schedule a bit fascinating. Keep in mind, all of his series are executed in a way that (at least so far), they can be read in any order and can be read independently of each other. This is the third series Maresca is publishing, and the other two trilogies are not yet complete. But, that’s not because he writes slow, on the contrary! These books are being released at a pretty good pace.  I love the idea that this third one will keep the story going after the other two finish. It’s just interesting, and I’m not sure I’ve seen concurrent series quite like this before. Now, for those unfamiliar with Maresca’s other two series, Maradaine and Maradaine Constabulary, despite being concurrent and in the same city, they can easily be read independently of one another. The first starts with The Thorn of Dentonhill which is set in a magic school, but also gives a view of the city’s crime through the eyes of a vigilante (who happens to also be a student at the magic school). I find this…

Upcoming Releases: March 5 – 11, 2017
Upcoming Releases / March 4, 2017

Here’s a rundown of the books we think you should look out for in coming in the week. See any that you are really looking forward to? Find any you had not heard of yet? Know of books we missed? We know we don’t have everything and would love to hear what you feel we may have overlooked.   FANTASY          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR   FANTASY                     URBAN FANTASY       SCIENCE FICTION         HORROR       FANTASY          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR   Etched in Bone Bishop, Anne 3/7/2017 Gather Her Round Bledsoe, Alex 3/7/2017 Silence Fallen Briggs, Patricia 3/7/2017 The Bone Witch Chupeco, Rin 3/7/2017 Archangel Fortune, Margaret 3/7/2017 Smells Like Finn Spirit Henderson, Randy 3/7/2017 The Holver Alley Crew Maresca, Marshall Ryan 3/7/2017 Sins of Empire McClellan, Brian 3/7/2017 Magic for Nothing McGuire, Seanan 3/7/2017 Seven Surrenders Palmer, Ada 3/7/2017 The Lovecraft Squad Probert, John Llewellyn 3/7/2017 The Song Rising Shannon, Samantha 3/7/2017 Lotus Blue Sparks, Cat 3/7/2017…

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7/10
Review: An Import of Intrigue by Marshall Ryan Maresca
Reviews / November 1, 2016

An Import of Intrigue is the second installment of The Maradaine Constabulary. It delves deeper into the politics impacting Maradaine and also exposes more about Satrine’s past and Jinx’s magic. Once again, I found myself more interested in the characters than the actual case they are working on.  Full disclosure, I often don’t do well with detective mystery books, so that is not surprising based on my reading preferences. The investigation the book centers on is a murder of a high ranking member of one of Maradaine’s cultural groups. The evidence at the scene points in a multitude of directions, leaving virtually everyone a suspect. To complicate the investigation, and add to the story, Jinx is having a bit of a personal crisis with his magical abilities. So not only do they have to solve the case, Jinx also has a mystery of what is happening to him and his magic. Is he starting to go mad like some members of his family? Or can he find a cause and solution. In this book, I felt like my engagement with the plot may have been hindered a bit by the introduction of all the different cultural factions that were central…

Upcoming Releases: Jan 31 – February 6, 2016
Upcoming Releases / January 30, 2016

Here’s a rundown of the books we think you should look out for in coming in the week. See any that you are really looking forward to? Find any you had not heard of yet? Know of books we missed? We know we don’t have everything and would love to hear what you feel we may have overlooked.   FANTASY          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR     FANTASY                 URBAN FANTASY     SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR         FANTASY          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR     The Alchemy of Chaos Marshall Ryan Maresca 2/2/2016 DAW Burning Midnight Will McIntosh 2/2/2016 Delacorte Revenge and the Wild Michelle Modesto 2/2/2016 Balzer + Bray Dreaming Death J. Kathleen Cheny 2/2/2016 Roc Winterwood Jacey Bedford 2/2/2016 DAW Poseidon’s Wake Reynolds, Alastair 2/2/2016 Ace Kingfisher McKillip, Patricia A. 2/2/2016 Ace Kings Rising Pacat, C. S. 2/2/2016 Berkley Revisionary Hines, Jim C. 2/2/2016 DAW Isaac Asimov’s I, Robot: To Preserve Reichert, Mickey Zucker 2/2/2016 Roc Blood In Her…

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8/10
Review: Alchemy of Chaos by Marshall Ryan Maresca
Reviews / January 27, 2016

Alchemy of Chaos is another great installment in the Maradaine world. It continues to carry forward the excitement of magic, gangs we met in The Thorn of Dentonhill and even introduces some deadly female assassins into the mix. Veranix, known as The Thorn on the street, has become a notorious vigilante in Maradaine. His presence and interference has caused disruption and concern not just amongst his target, the effite trade and Fenmere’s operation in Dentonhill, but the street gangs of Mardaine have also taken notice. Some view him as a positive thing, on their side. But others see him as a potential threat that may be out to take terrority from them. This definitely becomes more of a worry after The Thorn discovers that the Red Rabbits have begun to work their way into the effite trade. Dealing in effite makes them targets, but other gangs just see The Thorn starting to take out a fellow gang, raising fears about what his ultimate plans really are. One of the things I enjoy about this book is how Veranix is learning to rely (and trust) others to help him. He may have started as a solo vigilante, but taking out Fenmere’s entire effite…