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6/10
Review: Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
Reviews / December 4, 2017

Here’s the thing: I like Seanan McGuire, but for some strange reason or another her books always seem to rub me the wrong way when she writes as Mira Grant. Because of this, I almost didn’t pick up Into the Drowning Deep, but in the end, I’m glad I did—the premise of a horror novel about mermaids was just too amazing for me to pass up, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have at least bit of fun with it. Still, I wish I’d enjoyed the book more, though like I said, there’s probably a precedent for some of my more conflicted sentiments, namely that some of the same issues I’ve had in the past with her characters and world-building just kept cropping up. While Into the Drowning Deep is the start of a new story, it is also technically the follow-up to Rolling in the Deep, a novella chronicling the tragic fate of the cruise liner Atargatis which set sail for the Mariana Trench seven years ago on a mission to film a mockumentary about the existence of mermaids. Only, no one made it back alive. Every member of the Imagine Entertainment studio film crew was…

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9/10
Review: The Tethered Mage by Melissa Caruso
Reviews / October 12, 2017

The Tethered Mage was a very enjoyable read with an interesting magic system. Individuals in this world develop a tell tale mage-mark (a ring on their iris) as they develop their magical ability. There are different types of abilities that may manifest and some display at a younger age than others. But regardless of ability, if a child displays the mage-mark, they must be enlisted as a Falcon. A “jess” is put on their arm to control their magic. The person who places the jess on the Falcon becomes their Falconer with the ability to turn on or suppress their magical abilities with a word. While the intent is to help the Falcons maintain control (because once they lose control, there is no turning back, they become consumed in their magic), it can also be seen as a way to control those with magical abilities and use them for the empire’s purposes. They become tools for the military. Naturally, this will create some dissent. The story focuses on a pair of women joined together in an unlikely Falconer/Falcon relationship, something neither of them wanted or expected in their life. Zaira is a fire warlock, one of the most dangerous and…

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8/10
Review: Soul of the World by David Mealing
Reviews / August 14, 2017

Soul of the World is a good debut that sets the stage for an epic, world spanning series featuring magic, fantastical creatures and beasts. Three very different perspectives are used to give us the world view, which features a new and old world, and while there are different names, it feels much like England, France and the Americas. Aruk’Jar gives insights into the wilds and tribal life and customs. There is a strong tradition of gender roles here and even the magic is split according to “women’s magic”. But we do see strong females here, women can hold on to that magic as a power for themselves. Aruk’Jar has a very “do the right thing” type of personality and is driven to his best for the benefit of his tribe. Erris shows the reader what life is like on the battlefield and an understanding of the war that is going on. She is in command of a military campaign and is doing a stellar job (I love women who excel in military positions). I really like Erris, she is a strong leader and soldier. She also has magic to aid her, and uses that to her advantage in keeping her…

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8/10
Review: Raid by K. S. Merbeth
Reviews / August 8, 2017

In Raid, Merbeth takes us back to the wastes where we can see all the violence and messiness that comes with it. If you haven’t read Bite, I can sum it up as a post-apocalyptic type, mad max type of world. With cannibals (or sharks as they are called in the books). It can be an isolating world, and the perspective of Clementine really highlights this. She hunts raiders, who destroy and endanger towns, but it also actually feeds her isolation. People may be happy for her work killing raiders, but her ability to do so is alarming. Clementine is not exactly a person anyone would like to be the “girl next door”. She came in to violence at a very young age, and discovered she had quite a knack for it. While it earned respect and admiration of her fellow townsfolk, once on her own, she never could find quite where she fit in. She takes to violence and killing almost too easily, her ability to take another’s life can be quite disarming to normal folk, but it is also how she survives and how she knows to make her world at least a little bit better (by taking…

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9/10
Review: The Boy on the Bridge by M.R. Carey
Reviews / May 29, 2017

Well, the question of whether M.R. Carey could catch lightning in a bottle twice has been answered. Not that I had doubted it much, but while The Girl with All the Gifts was met with much acclaim, I’d made sure to temper my expectations for its follow-up companion novel in the months up to its release. Given the infuriatingly vague publisher description, and with the newness of the whole idea, there were just way too many unknowns. Thankfully, The Boy on the Bridge came through with flying colors. It might not have been quite as fresh as the original, simply because we know so much more about the world now, but the book still had plenty of surprises in store. Here’s what I can tell you: The Boy on the Bridge is something of a prequel to The Girl with All the Gifts but it can be read as a standalone (though I still highly recommend reading the books in their publication order). The world has been ravaged by the Cordyceps plague, turning much of its population into “Hungries” — effectively just another term for the walking dead. And yet, humanity still has hope that it will find a cure,…

Upcoming Releases: April 23 – 29, 2017
Upcoming Releases / April 22, 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            SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR FANTASY     SCIENCE FICTION   HORROR     FANTASY       SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR

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…

Upcoming Releases: February 19 – 25, 2017
Upcoming Releases / February 18, 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         SCIENCE FICTION    FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION       FANTASY        SCIENCE FICTION     

Upcoming Releases: February 12 – 18, 2017
Upcoming Releases / February 11, 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 FANTASY   URBAN FANTASY   SCIENCE FICTION   FANTASY          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION In Calabria Beagle, Peter S. 2/14/2017 Winter of the Gods Brodsky, Jordanna Max 2/14/2017 Miranda and Caliban Carey, Jacqueline 2/14/2017 Portal of a Thousand Worlds Duncan, Dave 2/14/2017 Gilded Cage James, Vic 2/14/2017 Lincoln in the Bardo Saunders, George 2/14/2017 Ubo Tem, Steve Rasnic 2/14/2017

Upcoming Releases: January 29 – February 4, 2017
Upcoming Releases / January 28, 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   FANTASY       URBAN FANTASY   SCIENCE FICTION         FANTASY          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION   The Hanging Tree Ben Aaronovitch 1/31/2017 The Ghoul Vendetta Lisa Shearin 1/31/2017 Six Wakes Mur Lafferty 1/31/2017 Binti: Home Nnedi Okorafor 1/31/2017 Caraval Stephanie Garber 1/31/2017 Crossroads of Canopy Thoraiya Dyer 1/31/2017