Wednesday, January 17, 2018

The Young Queens

The Young Queens (Three Dark Crowns, #0.5)

The Young Queens is a prequel novella to Three Dark Crowns, showing the first few years of life for Mirabella, Arsinoe and Kat. As a big fan of the series I knew I needed to pick this one up, and I was not disappointed. We start out right after their birth, and learn a little about their mother Queen Camille. The novella gives background on Fennbirn and the whole queens thing without being an infodump, and the writing is as poised and smooth as ever. This prequel blends seamlessly into the previous two books and my only complaint was when it was over. 

I'm a little ambivalent about prequel novellas and 0.5 stories, but in this case it was a nice addition to the story. I thought Kendare Blake did a great job showing us the past, and giving us clues, without giving away the farm. And the story cemented my already formed opinions of the three protagonists- I still like Mirabella (maybe the most) but Arsinoe is awesome too, and I feel sorry for Katharine. I liked her in the first book, and she had a rough start being housed with the Arrons. Speaking of whom, the supporting players are here too- we get glimpses at Natalia and Genevieve at a much younger age, as well as Sara Westwood and High Priestess Luca. The scene with Mirabella and Luca meeting for the first time was particularly well executed, I thought. 

We get a few hints as to the island being separated from the mainland as well as the fact that the queens' gifts seem to be declining in general (although Mirabella seems to buck that trend). And Jules and Joseph are part of the story as well. In fact those who think Jules will play an important role going forward will probably enjoy this very much. We see the appearance of Madrigal, and Jules gets her cat! So all in all if you're a fan of the series I would recommend this one- it's good stuff. 

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Can't Wait Wednesday #5 / Midweek Stuff

 So here's a midweek round up of what I'm reading watching, etc. Plus Can't Wait Wednesday, hosted by Wishful endings. So sit back, raise a cuppa, and see what's new! And share what you're up to.  

This week my Can't Wait pick is Artificial Condition, the second book in the Murderbot Diaries.       

Artificial Condition (The Murderbot Diaries, #2)

What I'm Reading

The Extinction Trials (The Extinction Trials, #1)

Bad Girls with Perfect Faces

What I'm Watching

Image result

Image result for riverdale


Misc Stuff

Okay- question of the day.

You find a portal that leads to any one place in the world. You have 24 hours to visit and return before the portal closes. Where do you go? 

Top Ten Bookish Goals


 Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week a new Top Ten list will be posted. Everyone is welcome to join. Link back so everyone can check out other bloggers' lists. It's a fun way to get to know fellow bloggers.

This week is Top Ten bookish resolutions or goals. Interesting one! I don't normally set a lot of resolutions or goals- mood reader here!- but I have a few things I'd like to do more (or maybe less of) in the new year. So... here we go!     

1) Read more urban fantasy. I failed at this last year, big time, but this year I'll try again. I'm just picky I guess with UF.  

Three Days to Dead (Dreg City, #1)

2) Re- read more. I have a lot of books I'd like to revisit, and even reviews I'd like to re- do. So yeah maybe more re- reading. 

3) Read some older sci-fi. I used to read a fair amount, but SciFi Month and Vintage Science Fiction Month have inspired me to read more backlist stuff.  

Star man's son

4) Maybe request some ARC's. I have a Netgalley account but never use it, and as a mood reader I tend to avoid ARC's, but maybe I'll actually request a few this year??

5) Read more science fiction and fantasy. 2017 seemed like it was the year of the psychological thriller for me, I read a ton of those, and while I love 'em I want to get back to more SF/F. 

6) Reply better to comments. Sometimes I do okay and sometimes I don't- depends on the week- but I appreciate every comment and would love to answer every one. 

7) Do more bookstore spotlights. I used to do these but kinda got away from 'em, so maybe in 2018 I can spotlight some of the fun indie and other bookstores in the area. 

8) Buy more Funko's.  

Image result for funko orion slave girl

9) Do more discussion posts. I've done a fair amount but not as many lately? 

10) Read some mysteries. Even though I want to focus on SF/F this year, I have been meaning to read Agatha Christie, as well as some cozy authors I've been thinking of. 

Tuesday Tag #74

The Extinction Trials (The Extinction Trials, #1)

Only the strongest will be chosen 
Only the reckless will survive 

I don't know, I think I like this one best

The Hunger Games meets Jurassic Park  

Monday, January 15, 2018

On the Run Part 17

The rain had been constant, falling in sheets all day. It was the kind of rain that chilled you to the bone, made you want to be home with a cup of something warm. But they were here, on Tantalus IV, for the Gate, and everything had gone wrong from the start. Martinez had just started interfacing with the Gate when the pulse beam took his head off, and Christie hadn't been far behind. She tried to cover them- she was security on this mission- but they were in a crossfire and she went down quickly. He had just looked at her, at the eyes staring, unblinking, into the driving rain, until Anna had snapped him out of it. 

"Come on! We have to go," she screamed over the wind. Somehow the Gate was still open- thank God for that- and it was humming. All they had to do was step through. But Christie was just lying there...

Anna was pulling him now, and it was a miracle they hadn't been hit. He couldn't pinpoint where all the fire was coming from, but...there. A flashpoint. With a roar he raised his weapon and fired, causing something to erupt in flames, but whether it was the shooter or just the cover they were using he couldn't say. Not caring, he fired again, repeatedly. Targeting any muzzle flash he saw, he yelled at Anna to go. 

"Go! I'll cover you," he screamed into the rain. 
"I won't leave you," she called back. "We go together or not at all."
"Go!" he yelled. "We don't have time. I'll be right behind you."
She said nothing, kept firing, then looked at him. "You better be," she said as she looked into his eyes. Then she was gone, diving headfirst through the Gate. He continued to fire into the rain, anywhere and everywhere. 

Over the whine of his overtaxed pulse rifle he could hear thunder, and if anything it was raining even harder now. Visibility was zip although he could hear shouts of "take him alive" and "move in." He wondered about that as he sprinted for the Gate. It could shut down at any moment. He heard pulse fire around him, felt more than saw the blast that bloomed in his peripheral vision, and then he was there. I am coming, he thought. And then, with a last look back, he leapt through. 

Eric woke, heart racing. He reached over but Anna wasn't there, her side of the bed cold. She didn't come back last night. Should he be worried? Anna could take care of herself, had gone to her place to get some things, but he had assumed she would come back. He picked up his com- no messages- and settled back into his pillow, worrying. With everything going on...

Throwing off the covers he rose and went to the window, peering out at the night sky. The ever- present traffic was there, of course, a swarm of fireflies passing in the night. The lights of the city went on forever. Paxus had always felt safe, easy to lose yourself in. Now even that was shattered, with the news they'd received yesterday. Rogue teams, a "master Gate" having been discovered, and of course the recent attempts on their lives. They'd been assured that they were safe, that they were being watched, but he wasn't so sure. The fact that kill teams had come through the Gate network told him all he needed to know.

His com chimed and he hurried over to the bed to grab it. He was hoping for Anna but instead the call was from unknown. Hesitating, he answered. "Yes?"
There was silence for a moment.
"We need to talk."
"Well, hello Andreas."

Friday, January 12, 2018

Sunday Post #228

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer
Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews
It's Monday! What Are You Reading is hosted by Book Date 
Well it warmed up this week (that being relative) but at least is's not zero! I'll take it. And I had a better reading week, so yay for me. After a little bit of a late December slump I seem to be full speed ahead so that's good. Hope everyone is having a great first part of 2018. 

I finished the River At Night this week- great story! - and am debating what to read next. Maybe Vault of Dreams which I acquired thanks to Shannon at It Starts At Midnight or The Woman in the Window, which is getting ALL the buzz. I'm still binging Longmire too on Netflix- I'm into S3 now.    

Last week I reviewed The Complete Morgaine, an old school SF book that partially inspired my Gates stories, and also Intrigue in Capri, a short novella in the Amory Ames series. This week I'll be taking a look at The Young Queens (the new Kendare Blake novella) and The Birthday Girl. And... I'm happy to report that On the Run 17 will be up Monday! If you need to catch up you can find previous installments here.    

The River at NightThe Birthday GirlThe Complete Morgaine (Morgaine Saga #1-4)Intrigue in Capri (Kindle Single) (An Amory Ames Mystery)The Young Queens (Three Dark Crowns, #0.5)

Song of the week 

Your love's contagious, one kiss is dangerous
But I have more to risk, than you to lose


Image result for remembered death cardinal edition


What Alice KnewThe Vault of Dreamers (The Vault of Dreamers, #1)The Woman in the Window


Talk Nerdy To Me rants about Star Wars again (and less f- boms this time)


Cemetery by Kirokaze

Saturated Future

Antarctic Base

Murder on the Orient Express art from Pinterest
**Orient Express. Andrew Davidson.

Bookcover Spotlight #136

Four Wives