Next SFF Author: Ben Aaronovitch

Author: Tia Nevitt (guest)


The Trouble with Demons: Need a break from vampires?

The Trouble with Demons by Lisa Shearin

I can’t imagine anyone who enjoyed Magic Lost, Trouble Found and Armed and Magical being disappointed by The Trouble with Demons. For this novel, Ms. Shearin turned up the darkness, turned up the romantic tension, and turned down the snark. All without sacrificing action or fun. Plus, it’s longer!

Raine’s chaotic world gets even more so in The Trouble With Demons when someone opens a Hellgate,

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Master of Shadows: Delicious little romantic suspense novel

Master of Shadows by Janet Lorimer

With a single sentence, Janet Lorimer establishes the mood of Master of Shadows. And there, she starts a familiar story — Beauty meets the Beast and goes to live with him in his enchanted castle. That is, he could be a beast. Since he is always shrouded in a cowl, Ariel doesn’t know for certain.

In the story, Louvel hires Ariel to categorize the books in his extensive library. Ariel has a master’s degree in Liberal Arts — a proper degree for a the daughter of a wealthy man — and she is delighted to have a chance to actually use it.

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Jinx: A delightful morsel of a novel

Jinx by Jennifer Estep

Jinx focuses on Bella Bulluci, who was Fiona Fine’s fashion designer rival in Hot Mama. Bella comes from a family of superheroes — both superpowered and otherwise — and she’s quite frankly tired of the whole gig. She’s had superheroes out the wazoo, especially since her family became closely affiliated to the Fearless Five in the previous novel. She has a power that is more of a curse, and it causes her endless embarrassment when the strangest things happen around her.

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Elom: Cave Bear meets Close Encounters

Elom by William Drinkard

I really loved this novel.

The blurb for Elom got me: “The Clan of the Cave Bear meets Close Encounters of the Third Kind.”

William Drinkard is not your typical debut novelist. He served in the Alabama State Legislature for twelve years, and even was the Senate Majority Leader. He’s still involved with politics, but not as an elected official. When one hears such things, one wonders,

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Hot Mama: Book candy

Hot Mama by Jennifer Estep

Settling down to read Hot Mama was like settling down to have a piece of book candy. (I didn’t originate this term; I discovered it on Jennifer Estep’s Blog.) You know it is going to be a fast read with lively, snappy dialog and laugh-out-loud humor. And Hot Mama did not disappoint!

It begins with Carmen Cole’s wedding to Sam Sloane, the uberdude in Karma Girl.

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The 13th Reality: A rousing adventure

The 13th Reality by James Dashner

The 13th Reality, the first volume of The Journey of Curious Letters by James Dashner, was a complete delight.

Tick (short for Atticus) is your ultimate unlikely hero. He has a birthmark on his neck that he hates so much that he wears a scarf year-round. The school bullies call it the “barf scarf” and when we meet him, he is in the midst of being bullied. That very day, he receives the first in a series of curious letters,

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Once Bitten, Twice Shy: Poof! Another vampire up in smoke

Once Bitten, Twice Shy by Jennifer Rardin

My instincts were right with this one. Once Bitten, Twice Shy by Jennifer Rardin stood out from all the other urban fantasies right from the start. For me, it was a great and long-overdue introduction to the urban fantasy genre.

Rardin invented a great deal of vampire mythology, but she saw fit to keep all the traditional aspects as well. One can fend a vampire off with a cross, and holy water will cause even the most deadly vampire to back off.

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Hawkspar: Three things about a Holly Lisle novel

Hawkspar by Holly Lisle

This story is about a slave, and her fight for freedom. She is a member of the Tonk race. Rather than a nation, the Tonk are spread throughout the world. It turns out that there are quite a few Tonk among not only Hawkspar’s fellow slaves, but among the Oracles themselves. And one of them has cooked up a plot. Once the slave — who, through most of the story, doesn’t remember her name — takes on the Eyes, she becomes Hawkspar, and she immediately sets her predecessor’s plans into motion.

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Karma Girl: Surprising Depth

Karma Girl by Jennifer Estep

After Carmen Cole finds her finance in bed with her best friend, she makes the startling discovery — thanks  to the suits they are wearing — that they are in fact a superhero and an ubervillain. She snaps some photos of them with a handy camera and unmasks them both — thus launching her unmasking career. In Bigtime, New York, superhero battles level buildings on a regular basis. When you go shopping at Oodles-o-Stuff, you’re likely to encounter superheroes, because they get special discounts in exchange for protection against superfights.

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The Barbed Coil: A stand-alone by J.V. Jones

The Barbed Coil by J.V. Jones

My favorite novel by J.V. Jones is The Barbed Coil, a stand-alone novel set in both 20th century Earth and a strange and distant world. It begins in a most unusual manner, and I didn’t think it would work for me, but I read on, and I was glad I did.

Tessa McCamfrey suffers from tinnitus, or a ringing in her ears. She is never entirely free of it, but at certain periods of her life she suffers from especially bad spells.

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Next SFF Author: Ben Aaronovitch

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May 2024