Review: The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang
Reviews / May 7, 2018

Sometimes I find it difficult to write a review for a book that I loved wholeheartedly, mainly because of all the emotions I’m feeling and it’s as if every single one of them is vying to burst forth from me all at the same time. The Poppy War is one of those books. There’s so much I want to say about it, like why it’s so awesome, why it spoke so strongly to me, and why you should drop everything and read it at once. Really, I just loved this book so damn much, I’m at a complete loss as to where to start. But perhaps a brief rundown of its premise would be a good first step. The Poppy War is the story of Rin, a war orphan who was adopted into an opium-running peasant family from a poor southern province of Nikara. Life was hard, but tolerable—that is, until they tried to marry her off to a man three times her age. A girl like her has few other options, however; but Rin is determined not to become some fat merchant’s bed slave, surprising everyone when she decides to study for the Keju imperial examinations and ends up…

Review: Blood of the Four by Christopher Golden and Tim Lebbon
Reviews / April 2, 2018

As much as I enjoy standalone fantasy epics, a part of me feels Blood of the Four would have been better served had the authors not tried to cram everything in this ambitious endeavor into one single volume. I had very mixed feelings about this one, due in part to the wild swings between the highs and the lows. At times, the story would have me gripped in moments of frenzied action and intensity, while at others I would find myself almost lulled to sleep by some of the slower and more tedious sections. At the heart of this novel is a kingdom torn apart by power struggles and slavery. Once peaceful and prosperous, Quandis has become a nation divided, ruled by a queen whose drug addiction has left her mind addled and unable to control the dangerous magic she dabbles in. One night, while in a state of drug-induced stupor, she accidentally lets it slip to her paramour that she has been attempting to seize the magical power of the Four for herself, drawing upon the forces said to belong to the four ancient sorcerers who founded the kingdom. The queen’s lover, however, was not the only one to…

Review: Gunpowder Moon by David Pedreira
Reviews / February 26, 2018

When I first found out about Gunpowder Moon, I knew I had to read it. I’m a sucker for a good sci-fi mystery in space, and the novel’s lunar setting further sold me on it. But this is not just another one of your simple murder mysteries, and the main protagonist is not your typical detective. It is the year 2072, and Caden Dechert is a former Marine heading up a US mining operation on moon. He’s a good leader, drawing from his war experience back on Earth as he mentors his team and takes the new recruits under his wing, teaching them all about safety and survival on the lunar surface. Anything from a small leak in a suit to a speck of moon dust getting in the machinery can lead to fatal results, and no one is more diligent or careful than Dechert when it comes protecting his crew. So when an explosion occurs, killing one of his young miners, everyone is shocked. No one believes it to be an accident, and sure enough, an investigation finds clear signs of sabotage. There are plenty of suspects to go around, but the top brass arriving from Earth are quick…

EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY: Markswoman by Rati Mehrotra
Excerpt , Giveaway / January 19, 2018

Today, we are thrilled to not only host an excerpt from Markswoman by Rati Mehrotra, but also offer a giveaway. Markswoman releases Januray 23, 2018 but you can get a brief look below! And in case you missed my review last week, be sure to check it out. The tl;dr? Markswoman has a great mix of badass women, action and an interesting world. Assassins, magical blades, betrayal and more. Enjoy the excerpt, enter our giveaway and be sure to check out the book! Excerpt from Marskwoman  By Rati Mehrotra   Giveaway     About the Author Born and raised in India, Rati Mehrotra now lives and writes in lovely Toronto. She is represented by Mary. C. Moore of Kimberley Cameron & Associates. Markswoman is her first book. You can check out her short stories at http://ratiwrites.com/short-fiction/       About the Book Kyra is the youngest Markswoman in the Order of Kali, one of a handful of sisterhoods of highly trained elite warriors. Armed with blades whose metal is imbued with magic and guided by a strict code of conduct, the Orders are sworn to keep the peace and protect the people of Asiana. Kyra has pledged to do so—yet she secretly harbors…

Review: Marskwoman by Rati Mehrotra
Reviews / January 9, 2018

This debut was such an enjoyable read for me. It had a great balance of world building and character drama and the pace kept things moving. The world in this is definitely interesting. It starts out feeling like a standard fantasy world with magic and swords, etc. But then as you keep reading and details are revealed, you come to realize it also is post-apocalyptic. I’ve seen this in a number of other books, but that certainly did not prevent me from enjoying the reveals in this one at all. There are orders of women called Markswomen, who serve essentially as assassins. They are meant to uphold the law and enforce order, so they are feared as their skills are almost legendary. Plus, as I mentioned before, they are assassins, so its probably natural that the commoners don’t want to buddy up with them and instead keep a respectul (and slightly fearful) distance. One secret to their power is that they are telepathically bonded with a special type of blade, so it becomes a sort of extenstion of themselves. These blades are magical, and provide their owners strength and the ability to do more than just cut or slice. Even at…

Review: The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty
Reviews / December 11, 2017

Meet Nahri, a young hustler who makes a living scamming the superstitious and gullible on the streets of 18th century Cairo. Even though she has the uncanny ability to sense illness in a person simply by touching them, she’s never truly believed that what she does is magic. But then one day during a zar ceremony, in which Nahri was just supposed to go through the motions, she accidentally calls forth a daeva warrior. But said daeva isn’t just any spirit to be summoned, for he is Dara, the greatest warrior to have ever lived. Right away, he recognizes Nahri for what she really is—something not all entirely human—and soon the two of them are on the run, trying to say one step ahead of the dark forces pursuing them. Their only safe haven would be Daevabad, the city of gilded brass walls and enchantments, where Dara claims there will be protection to be found. Many authors have endeavored to tell a similar story, most of which always seem to feature a girl and a guy attempting to reach a magical city while evading the evil creatures hunting them. However, S.A. Chakraborty has achieved something quite unique and remarkable with…

Review: Hannah Green and her Unfeasibly Mundane Existence by Michael Marshall Smith
Reviews / September 4, 2017

Hannah’s world is turned upside down when her parents split up. But when the Devil wakens from a long nap to discover someone is stealing the evil deeds of humanity, Hannah and her family will be central to putting this right. For various shades of right. He is the Devil, after all. I’ve been a big fan of Michael Marshall Smith for years, and his books are few and far enough between that a new one is always a celebration (yes, there are Michael Marshall books between times, but they’re not usually quite the same). I like his narrative tone of voice, and his way of twisting aspects of the real world; I like his ability to provoke melancholy and capture heartache. So Hannah Green and her Unfeasibly Mundane Existence had a burden of expectation to live up to – and sets its stall out from the start as being somewhat different to the rest of MMS’s body of (long-form) work. The prologue is mischievous and knowing, breaking the fourth wall and playing with expectations (if anything, it reminds me of the voice-over at the start of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang). And for the first time, we get a heroine – and…

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 19 – 25, 2017
Upcoming Releases / March 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          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR   FANTASY       URBAN FANTASY       SCIENCE FICTION         HORROR       FANTASY          URBAN FANTASY           SCIENCE FICTION           HORROR    

Upcoming Releases: February 28, 2017
Upcoming Releases / February 25, 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        HORROR FANTASY   HORROR     FANTASY     HORROR