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Louise Marley

Louise Marley/ Toby Bishop(1952- )
Louise Marley. Louise Marley used to be a concert and opera singer, but now indulges her taste for the dramatic by writing fantasy, science fiction, and historical fiction with a dash of the fantastic under her own name and the pseudonym Toby Bishop. She also teaches young adult and adult writer’s workshops, and teaches for the Long Ridge Writers Group. Learn more at Louise Marley’s website.

Mozart’s Blood: A new spin on vampirism

Mozart's Blood by Louise Marley

Don’t judge a book by its cover, they say, and in the case of Mozart’s Blood by Louise Marley, that is very good advice indeed. One would expect a torrid romance novel from the painting of a woman with disproportionate breasts and a look of impending orgasm on her face. But one would be wrong. This vampire novel contains its fair share of passion, but it is more a character study than a romance. And while the structure of the novel is flawed, it is nonetheless a pleasant book with which to spend a few hours.

Octavia Voss is a mezzosoprano who is uncannily poised and talented. As the book opens, she is finishing a run of “La Traviata” at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, and is about to embark on the role of Donna Anna in Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” at the legendary La Scala in Milan, Italy. But no sooner do she and her assistant Ugo arrive than ... Read More

A Secret History of Witches: Mothers and daughters across five generations

A Secret History of Witches by Louisa Morgan

At nearly 500 pages, Louisa Morgan’s A Secret History of Witches (2017) might seem daunting, but it’s partitioned into five sections, individually focusing on a subsequent member of the Orchiére family as they flee persecution in France, set up roots in England, and eventually become involved in World War II. I zipped through this book in an afternoon, and while romance does have its own part to play, the interactions between mothers and their daughters is the most significant aspect of the novel.

Throughout centuries, Orchiére women have cultivated magical gifts, ranging from basic charms or talismans to complex spell-crafting and scrying, assisted by their animal familiars. Naturally, such behavior is poorly received by surrounding townsfolk and their own husbands from time to time, with reactions tending toward the murderous. But wheth... Read More

World Fantasy Convention 2011: Day Two

I'm reporting about Day 2 today. Read about Day One here.

There were lots of interesting panels today, and it was frustrating to try to boil them down into the ones I wanted to see.

My first choice was “Retelling Old Stories: The New Fairy Tales.” I’ve got all the modern fairy tale collections edited by Terri Windling and Ellen Datlow and many other rewritings, so I was eager to hear this discussion, and it didn’t disappoint. The first question addressed by the panel was the obvious one: why rewrite fairy tales? Read More

Other novels by Louise Marley

Singers of Nevya — (1995-1997, 2005) Singer in the Snow is a YA follow-up to the original trilogy (which is available in omnibus). Publisher: On the ice planet Nevya, only the psi-Gifted Singers make survival possible for their people. The Gift is disappearing, and Sira, the youngest and best of the Singers, must find out why, and reform her culture in order to save it. It has been said that art keeps darkness at bay; the Singers of Nevya do just that, creating pockets of warmth and light by focusing their psi through their music.

Louise Marley Singers of Nevya 1. Sing the Light 2. Sing the Warmth 3. Receive the Gift 4. Singer in the SnowLouise Marley Singers of Nevya 1. Sing the Light 2. Sing the Warmth 3. Receive the Gift 4. Singer in the SnowLouise Marley Singers of Nevya 1. Sing the Light 2. Sing the Warmth 3. Receive the Gift 4. Singer in the SnowLouise Marley Singers of Nevya 1. Sing the Light 2. Sing the Warmth 3. Receive the Gift 4. Singer in the Snow

fantasy and science fiction book reviewsThe Terrorists of Irustan — (1999) Publisher: On the planet of Irustan, where women have few rights, medicant Zahra IbSada helps her friend Kalen retrieve Kalen’s daughter from an abusive marriage, an act that has life-changing consequences for the women of the planet.

fantasy and science fiction book reviewsThe Glass Harmonica — (2000) Publisher: Eilish Eam is an orphan and street musician, living in 1761, London. She survives on pennies and applause, and nothing more. Until the night Benjamin Franklin stops to listen, awe-struck by her gift — and with plans for her future… Erin Rushton is a classical musician living in 2018, Seattle. She stands in the orchestra, consumed by the music-and haunted by visions of a young girl from a different time, who needs her help…

fantasy and science fiction book reviewsThe Maquisarde — (2002) Publisher: In the final few years of the 21st century, life in Paris is quiet for Ebriel Serique and her family. They live protected by the glass walls of their skyscraper apartment, safe from the poverty-stricken countries just over the Line of Partition. Until one day, her husband and daughter go sailing, and are murdered by terrorists who claim their yacht had crossed the Line. Driven by grief and justice, Ebriel ventures beyond the confines of her charmed life to confront the truth about the way the world is run. And while she never would have suspected it, Ebriel discovers that she has the courage for anything-even violence.

fantasy and science fiction book reviewsThe Child Goddess — (2004) Publisher: A priest and anthropologist, Isabel Burke has been called to the barren planet of Virimund. The ExtraSolar Corporation, developing Virimund as an energy source, has encountered an “incident” that has stopped their work… There is human life on Virimund after all-and there are children born here who do not age. One little girl has been captured by ExtraSolar, which hopes to discover the secret to her ageless existence. For ExtraSolar, she’s a resource to be used and discarded. But for Isabel, she’s an innocent who needs help…fantasy and science fiction book reviews

Absalom’s Mother and Other Stories — (2007) Publisher: Louise Marley’s first collection includes ten science fiction and fantasy stories, most with a feminist take. Due to Marley’s background as a concert opera singer, many stories have music at their heart.

fantasy and science fiction book reviewsThe Brahms Deception — (2011) Publisher: In her highly intriguing new novel, Louise Marley masterfully intertwines the past and present with a mystery surrounding one of the world’s greatest composers…The Brahms DeceptionMusic scholar Frederica Bannister is thrilled when she beats her bitter rival, Kristian North, for the chance to be transferred back to 1861 Tuscany to observe firsthand the brilliant Johannes Brahms. Frederica will not only get to see Brahms in his prime; she’ll also try to solve a mystery that has baffled music experts for years. But once in Tuscany, Frederica’s grip on reality quickly unravels. She instantly falls under Brahms’ spell-and finds herself envious of his secret paramour, the beautiful, celebrated concert pianist Clara Schumann. In a single move, Frederica makes a bold and shocking decision that changes everything…When Frederica fails to return home, it is Kristian North who is sent back in time to Tuscany to find her. There, Kristian discovers that Frederica indeed holds the key to unraveling Brahms’ greatest secret. But now, Frederica has a dark secret of her own-one that puts everyone around her in devastating peril…