In an empire ruled by bone shard magic, the new Emperor finally sits in her hard-earned throne, but dangers still lie ahead and enemies hide at every turn. Lin Sukai now rules the Phoenix Empire, but her struggles are only just beginning. Her people don't trust her. Her political alliances are weak. And in the north-east of the Empire, a rebel army of constructs is gathering, its leader determined to take the throne by force. Yet a greater threat looms on the horizon, for the Alanga - the powerful magicians of legend - have returned. Lin may need their help to defeat the rebels and restore order. But can she trust them?
I have read more YA books than usual recently, and I have been appreciating the way in which they can often be more honest than adult fiction, and that when they deal with the realities of the world - with or without using fantastical elements - it feels more sincere. Obviously I do not think… Continue reading Mini Reviews: Teen Excellence
Rhea and her twin brother, Lexos, have spent an eternity using cunning and magic to help rule their small, unstable country. Rhea controls the seasons to show favor to their most loyal stewards with bountiful harvests and short winters, while Lexos keeps the tides strong and impassable to maintain the country’s borders. Reigning over them… Continue reading Review: In A Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power
It has been twelve years since The War of Ashes, but animosity still lingers between the nations of Sharma and Gavendara, and only a few souls have dared to cross the border between them. The villagers of Jalard live a bucolic existence, nestled within the hills of western Sharma, and far away from the boundary which was once a warzone. To them, tales of bloodshed seem no more than distant fables. They have little contact with the outside world, apart from once a year when they are visited by representatives from the Academy who choose two of them to be taken away to their institute in the capital. To be Chosen is considered a great honour… of which most of Jalard’s children dream. But this year the Academy representatives make an announcement which is so shocking it causes friction between the villagers, and some of them begin to suspect that all is not what it seems. Just where are they taking the Chosen, and why? Some of them intend to find out, but what they discover will change their lives forever and set them on a long and bloody path to seek vengeance…
A MYTHIC WORLD. A LOST CHILD. A 177-YEAR-OLD WITCH. A DEADLY REGAL CHANCELLOR. A MYSTERY WITH MANY ANSWERS. Part adventure tale, part chronicle of an indomitable woman - the witch Sogolon - who bows to no man, this is an unforgettable exploration of power, personality, and the places where they overlap, set in a world… Continue reading Review: Moon Witch, Spider King by Marlon James
Blades Edge premier gangster, Trolley Mick, owes a favour to a family whose son, Daniel Jerrings, has vanished. He wants Mal to pay it. Jackie’s friend from the military, Spider, is also missing. And though Jackie doesn’t really do friends, he does do loyalty and that means Mal does too. But it seems that there are plenty of other people out there looking for Spider, and everything is spiralling down the drain in a wash of designer drugs, UFOs, racists, violent youth gangs and a group of evangelical Americans with their own agenda. Somehow, it all involves a missing teenager but nothing adds up, and violence lurks around every corner. Discovering the truth means sinking deeper into the grimy world of organised crime where dangerous people have an awful lot to lose, and a way out for Mal and Jackie is getting harder and harder to see.
I am not a frequent DNFer but the sheer amount of books I want to read means that I am starting to invest less time in ones that don't bring much enjoyment. My two most recent abandoned reads were ones I'd been looking forward to for a while, and are also new releases provided from… Continue reading DNF Reviews: Laws & Angels
For generations, deadly storms have ravaged Mina's homeland. Her people believe the Sea God, once their protector, now curses them with death and despair. To appease him, each year a maiden is thrown into the sea, in the hopes that one day the 'true bride' will be chosen and end the suffering. Many believe Shim Cheong - Mina's brother's beloved - to be the legendary true bride. But on the night Cheong is sacrificed, Mina's brother follows her, even knowing that to interfere is a death sentence. To save her brother, Mina throws herself into the water in Cheong's stead. Swept away to the Spirit Realm, a magical city of lesser gods and mythical beasts, Mina finds the Sea God, trapped in an enchanted sleep. With the help of a mysterious young man and a motley crew of demons, gods and spirits, Mina sets out to wake him and bring an end to the storms once and for all. But she doesn't have much time: a human cannot live long in the land of the spirits. And there are those who would do anything to keep the Sea God from waking...
Eighteen-year-old Daunis' mixed heritage has always made her feel like an outsider, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. When she witnesses a shocking murder, she reluctantly agrees to be part of a covert FBI operation into a series of drug-related deaths. But the deceptions - and deaths - keep piling up and soon the threat strikes too close to home. Now Daunis must decide what it means to be a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman) and how far she'll go to protect her community, even if it tears apart the only world she's ever known.
Csorwe, Shuthmili and Tal survey abandoned Echentyr worlds to make a living. The empire’s ruins seem harmless but fascinating. Yet disaster strikes when they stumble upon ancient magic during a routine expedition. This revives a warrior who’d slept for an age, reigniting a conflict thousands of years old. And the soldier binds Csorwe to her cause. Shuthmili is desperate to protect the woman she loves. However, as events escalate, she’s torn. Can she help Csorwe by clinging to her own humanity or by embracing her eldritch powers? Tal heads home, but his peace is shattered when a magical catastrophe hits his city. The wizard Sethennai is missing and Tal can’t face seeking his former lover to ask for help. So, he flees – but there’s no escaping the future. For throughout the Echo Maze’s linked worlds, fragments of an undead goddess are waking. Soon all must choose a side.