Smoke Bitten: No smoke without a fire

Smoke Bitten by Patricia Briggs

Fresh off her clash with black witches in Storm Cursed, Mercy Thompson — the coyote shapeshifter and Volkswagen mechanic whose urban fantasy series follows her adventures with vampires, werewolves, fae, witches and various monsters — is fretting about the distance that has built up between her and her husband, Adam, alpha of the local werewolf pack. Their mating bond has been shut down for weeks, keeping her from knowing his thoughts and feelings.

But other troubles raise their heads, distracting Mercy (at least temporarily) from the problems with Adam. The ancient power that is Underhill, the underground world of the fae, manifests in their home as Tilly, a creepy young girl (“I love battles. Blood and death followed by tears and mourning.”). Tilly has opened a door from Underhill into Mercy’s back... Read More

Perilous Shield: Worth the effort if you’re a fan

Perilous Shield by Jack Campbell

The planet of Midway has seen some pretty intense activity since the fall of the Syndicate worlds after their fleets were defeated by Admiral Jack Geary, the legendary Black Jack. Former COEs Gwen Iceni and Artur Drakon now have control of the political machine that was in place under the Syndicate and are crafting something new. They also control the local fleet, have rooted out most of the Syndicate internal spies (known as Snakes) and have successfully worked with the Alliance as they have transited the Midway star system twice. It’s been a busy time for two former CEOs who had been relegated to backwater duty because they were not quite the same as their peers.

Perilous Shield focuses on a couple of key elements and some of those things are so repetitively discussed that it becomes boring. After Tarnished Knight, the first book in this Read More

Tarnished Knight: Intellectual puzzle and space adventure

Tarnished Knight by Jack Campbell

As a fan of the LOST FLEET series by Jack Campbell, I was intrigued by a book written from the perspective of the “enemy.” With the Alliance victory over the Syndicate and the series moving on to another conflict, it’s a great time to start looking at what is going on with the Syndicate worlds. Thus, Tarnished Knight is the opening volume of LOST STARS, a spin-off series which runs parallel to events in the LOST FLEET series. Reading LOST FLEET first is probably a good idea because Tarnished Knight assumes you’re familiar with that background information.

Artur Drakon is a Syndicate CEO: an emotionless, driven, scheming, selfish rising star in the Syndicate firmament. People are useful commodities to him as they enhance his career and personal satisfaction. CEO Drako... Read More