Tag Archives: ARC

Hob’s Review of Blackwing by Ed McDonald

Blackwing (Ravens’ Mark #1)

by Ed McDonald

Paperback, 336 pages

Expected publication: October 3rd 2017 by Ace Books

I received an E-ARC of this book from Netgally in return for an honest review.

THE BLURB

Nothing in the Misery lasts…

Under a cracked and wailing sky, the Misery is a vast and blighted expanse, created when the Engine, the most powerful weapon in the world, was unleashed against the immortal Deep Kings. Across the wasteland, teeming with corrupted magic and malevolent wraiths, the Deep Kings and their armies are still watching—and still waiting.

Ryhalt Galharrow is no stranger to the Misery. The bounty hunter journeys to a remote outpost, armed for killing both men and monsters, and searching for a mysterious noblewoman. He finds himself in the middle of a shocking attack by the Deep Kings, one that should not be possible. Only a fearsome show of power from the very woman he is seeking saves him.

Once, long ago, he knew the woman well, and together they stumble onto a web of conspiracy that threatens to unmake everything they hold dear and end the fragile peace the Engine has provided. Galharrow is not ready for the truth about the blood he’s spilled and the gods he’s supposed to serve.

I goblinized the cover a bit to add Crowfoot, one of the nameless..

3391

 

OK that is some Blurb but let’s delve in to what it is saying in a bit more depth. First off the Misery. Well the Misery is when your number 1 fan kidnaps you and… oh wait wrong one. This misery while also being like hell on earth was created by one of the nameless as a kind of buffer zone between kingdoms. Oh, the Nameless are like Demi-Gods and so are the Deep Kings but they go about things a bit differently. But back to the Misery It is a buffer zone of hell on earth that has the annoying habit of trying to kill everyone that walks in to it. A place where you need a navigator with an astrolabe to find your way out. And that leaves you sick for days after you leave like you are going through heroin withdrawals. That is if you are not killed right off the bat by some of the beasties roaming around.

And this wonderful setting is where this book begins. This is written in first person. But while most First Person POV’s are the narrator telling their own story. This one is more like being in the mind of a man that is a drunk and borderline insane. A man that is haunted by so many ghosts of his past that this unreliable narrator goes back and forth between telling the story to some really weird places and random thoughts, and I absolutely loved it. Ryhalt Galharrow has a way about him that made me like him from the start. The pacing is steady throughout and by that, I mean it starts with action and never slows down.

The thing I really liked about this book was its originality. I mean yes, the writing style is extremely original. But what I am talking about is the originality of the story elements. Everything from the magic and monsters to the setting and style, they are all wonderfully new. I should warn you this is a pretty GrimDark world with plenty of death and carnage, but it is not gratuitous. The gore is part of the story not just there for shock value.

FINAL THOUGHTS

If you are tired of the same old thing in every fantasy book that you read, then this book is a must. Blackwing is not only a magnificent story that is brilliantly written, but it is also outstandingly original. A truly remarkable debut book. I give Blackwing By Ed McDonald 5 out of 5 stars.

Get a copy of Blackwing

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  9. Indigo
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Hob’s Review of White Trash Zombie Unchained (White Trash Zombie #6) by Diana Rowland

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Yes I Goblinized the cover lol

White Trash Zombie Unchained (White Trash Zombie #6)

by Diana Rowland

 

Paperback, 336 pages

Expected publication: September 5th 2017 by DAW

 

This is the sixth book in the series so it will have some spoilers. You have been warned!

OK first spoiler zombies are real. Psst don’t tell anyone! Angle ….er I mean Angel is a poor white trash girl with lots of potential that just wants to use brains, for the betterment of society. But the brains she uses are not always her own. Yes, Angel is a zombie that works as a morgue tech and is just starting her first year at community college.  She is also a member of the Tribe a zombie organization working for the safety of all zombies.

 

That should be enough to get you up to date on Angel. And where I am coming from with the review. For this book, I received an E-ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. I love the covers for all the books in this series but this is my favorite so far. Even though going with the title the gators should be unchained. For the first 5 books I listened to the audiobook and I loved the narration. But I don’t know if it was me actually reading this one or if the author has just gotten better but the quick joking dialog with some of her friends both ones in the know about her “Z” situation and ones that don’t felt more natural and flowed better than in previous books.

 

That dialog is also just great dialog plain and simple. As for this story, the threat of a real Zombie breakout amped up the tension to a much greater scale than previous books which I liked. I won’t actually give any spoilers for this book but the tension gets pretty high. It’s not that hard to figure it all out but it was fun to ride along even though I could see many of the reveals coming early. And I have to say it was a warm fuzzy ending.

 

FINAL THOUGHTS

Great Dialog really brought out the personality of Angel for me more than in the previous books. And what a great personality it is. I admit I would love to meet a girl like her, well maybe one that ate less brains. But my fictiophilia suffering aside it was a fun read. I am going to give White Trash Zombie Unchained 4.75 stars

 

Get a copy of White Trash Zombie Unchained

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  6. Google Play
  7. Abebooks
  8. Book Depository

Hob’s Review of Revenant Winds by Mitchell Hogan

The Blurb.

In a world devastated by a series of cataclysms over millennia, where the followers of different gods vie for ascendancy, mankind carves out a precarious existence among the remnants of a desolated past. Cities and civilizations are built atop mysterious and ofttimes menacing ruins, and the unforgiving wilderness beyond is filled with inhuman creatures and races from before the dawn of history. Sorcery is seen by some as a gift of the gods, and by others as their curse. And the demon-ravaged past has all but been forgotten.

As a secret cabal schemes to awaken an evil thought defeated millennia ago, the lives of three unlikely heroes are fated to converge:

Aldric, a veteran priest and sorcerer, who seeks acceptance from the church that shuns him. On the brink of their approval, he receives a mission that brings him face to face with a long-buried evil.

Niklaus, master swordsman, and slave to his goddess, who plots to split the veil between life and death and ascend to become her equal.

Kurio, the runaway daughter of a noble family, now turned to thievery, who stumbles across a disturbing secret that binds her future to infernal designs.

Drawn toward a horrifying endgame by an unknown force, Aldric, Niklaus, and Kurio find themselves in a battle not only for their lives, but for the beliefs that have come to define them.

A wrong decision, an overreaching ambition, or the failure of an already tormented faith, is all it will take to plunge mankind into an eternal dark.

 

I received an E-ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences what I say. As always, my opinions are completely my own.

I love the cover although it might not fly with some people, but only if they are fools. Ok that was a pretty bad joke even for me, but just let it pass. Sorry not sorry.

Gandalf_confronts_balrog

The truth is that is not the Balrog on the cover. Who it is though I am not sure. I believe it is supposed to Nysrog. The mega demon that almost ended humanity a few hundred or thousand years ago. But as he never actually makes an appearance in the book that is just a guess. The book is self-published and I must say it was extremely well edited as far as grammatical errors go, but it could use a bit of continuity tweaks. We all know that time is a wibbly wobbly thing. but there are 2 or 3 parts where it gets stretched and warped a bit confusingly to me. It’s not that big of a deal but each time it kind of threw my out of the story.

Revenant Winds takes place in a world of Gods and Demons magic and monsters. We experience this tale vicariously through 3 remarkably different POVs.

First is Aldric, a priest blessed by his god with healing powers but also blessed (or as he sees it cursed with Arcane magic ability and he hates that he must use his magic. He would rather work at the church using his god given healing ability. But even in a church that sees wizards as marginally better then demons he is forced to use his magic to safeguard ancient catacombs and burial sites from looters that might just bring demons out instead of gold. His introspection and self-pity made him unlikable at first. It took about 3/4th of the book before I started to like Aldric but he won me over in the end.

Next, we have Niklaus. He was my favorite character in the book by far. He is the chosen sword of a goddess and pretty much immortal. He has been roaming around running errands for his goddess for a very long time. How long is unclear but somewhere between 400 and 4,000 years. He is in love with his goddess (who is a total tease) and is looking for a way to become a god so they can be together.

 

Kurio is an interesting one. Born in to a noble family but abused by everyone she ran away and has been living as a thief making a decent bit of gold.

Now let’s look at the magic. Every sorcerer has a dawn and a dusk well of power. They will leak if not used but slowly and they are not usually the same size, so you might have to only fill the dawn well once a week and dusk every night.  To fill them they must be outside and meditating at sunset or sunrise. That part is well thought out and logical (if you can use that term for a fictional power) The actual using of the magic is pretty vague.  It is explained as a kind of mental math using equations as spells. They have little totems they carry with some of the equations on them to speed the process. That part just felt like a bit too much or not enough Handwavium. Other than that, I really liked the idea of this magic system.

Now let’s get back to Nysrog. He was a Demon that led armies to destroy humanity but he had his own human mages on his side. After he was sent back to the hells he came from, the human bad guys went into hiding vowing to re summon Ol’ Nys again. This is one of the wibbley wobbly timey wimey things I am not sure of. in the book the earth has been hit by 5 or 6 Cataclysms. And after each one humans rebuilt and then forgot what had caused it and even somehow managed to get new Gods. And I am pretty sure that the Cataclysms happened after Nys was here to party like it was 1999. Unless humans are able to build from the ground up then forget what made the world almost end really fast, Nys would need to have been gone a really long time. There are a few reasons that just conflict each other about the time line here but I don’t want to give spoilers as to why so I’ll just say I don’t think he has been gone that long.

The other main thing that made time seem to flow weird was when it took 4 days to get the horses and equipment ready to leave on an urgent mission to save a village. When they had the full backing of 2 churches the town guard and unlimited funds. That just seemed strange to me. I could literally go and gather a dozen horses, tack and gear for a week IN MY TOWN today in 2 hours tops. And although I do live in Payson, Arizona the town that is home to the World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo (132 years) I wouldn’t think it would be much harder to get horses in a fantasy town

FINAL THOUGHTS

I really enjoyed the book It had some fresh ideas and good dialog and I look forward to the next one in the series. It may seem like kind of a harsh review but I am just nitpicking. I think the more inexperienced reader, or maybe just people that read less fantasy than I do wouldn’t be bothered by the strange movement of time or lack thereof. In the end, I am going to give Revenant Winds 3.75 stars.

Hob’s Review of Legion of Flame by Anthony Ryan

The Legion of Flame (The Draconis Memoria #2) Kindle Edition

by Anthony Ryan

The Blurb

Empires clash and a fell power stakes its claim in the second in a new series from the New York Times bestselling author of the Raven’s Shadow Trilogy.

For centuries, the vast Ironship Trading Syndicate relied on drake blood—and the extraordinary powers it confers to those known as the Blood-blessed—to fuel and protect its empire. But now, a fearsome power has arisen—a drake so mighty that the world will tremble before it.

Rogue Blood-blessed Claydon Torcreek, Syndicate agent Lizanne Lethridge, and ironship captain Corrick Hilemore embark upon perilous quests to chase down clues that offer faint hopes of salvation. As the world burns around them, and the fires of revolution are ignited, these few are the last hope for the empire and for all of civilization

 

I received a copy of this book from Netgalley and the wonderful folks at Berkley Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences what I say. As always, my opinions, while completely awesome, are also completely my own.

 

This was a nice big book weighing in at 576 pages according to amazon. I will have to take their word for it. I had it on the kindle so can’t double check. The reason I have doubts is I finished the whole book within 60 hours of getting the email from Netgalley saying I was approved. But you know what they say, Time flies like an Airship with rocket boosters when you are reading a Steampunk book with Dragons. What? I am sure someone has said that before.

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This is book 2 in the series there is also a short novella out that I have not read but it is on my kindle so I should probably do that. It is called Sandrunners: A Draconis Memoria Short Story and you can pick that up for $0.99 here

As it is the second book there might be some slight spoilers, but I shall endeavor not to spoil anything directly. I give warning just in case. Now that is out of the way on to the review!

The story is told through multiple POVs, but there are 3 main eyes we see out of.  Claydon Torcreek the unregistered Blood Blessed. He is a member of the Longrifle independent contractor company. Lizanne Lethridge  Blood Blessed Full Shareholder and covert Spy/Assassin for the Ironship Trading Company.  Corrick Hilemore Captain of the Blood-Burner ship IPV  Viable Opportunity. Well if you haven’t read the first book you are probably thinking 2 things right now, First “I didn’t know this was a vampire book”. Second, “Vampires are OK I guess, as long as they don’t sparkle. but a Vampire ship is going too far”. Well let me put those worries to rest by saying, don’t be an idiot this is Anthony Ryan! There are no vampires sparkly or otherwise.

This is a world just about hitting it’s peek of the industrial age. It also has Dragons. The Dragons come in 4 flavors, Cherry red, Sour Green Apple, Blue Raspberry, and Black Licorice. Well OK those are the colors but they are not flavored. Blood Blessed are able to drink the blood to gain magic powers. (Think Alomancy from Mistborn with blood) Black gives the ability of Telekinesis (Everything wants to get away from Black Licorice) Red gives Pyrokinesis (Also known as Throwing Fucking FireBalls) If used on a Blood Burner ship engine it is like a steam boat warp drive.   Blue gives a limited but instantaneous ability to communicate between Blood Blessed that know each other anywhere in the world. Any of those three types of blood will hurt or kill a normal person if they touch it. Green is the odd one out in that respect. It can be used to heal anyone. But if used by a Blood Blessed it gives them super speed, strength, agility, and Dancing moves….. Just checking to see if you are still there.

 

Blood is called Product by the corporations and is the source of their wealth and power. (using another mistborn analogy product is like Atium.)  Only a few can use it but everyone wants it, even Bob.

news

The problem in book one is that dragons are becoming an endangered species. The main problem in book 2 is that we know they are not endangered but fighting back. Under the leadership of the White “Mystery Flavor” Dragon they have formed a

Legion of Flame.

Now let’s get back to the 3 main POV characters. Lizanne is sent to the empire (Like Pre-soviet Russia) still looking for the Mad-Inventor. Her storyline gets way strange and convoluted, but eventually ended up making a lot of the plot move forward.  Claydon and Corrick are together for most of the book but do split up in two groups for a bit. Claydon’s  group goes on a journey to the center of the earth ride set up by the ancients. His was by far was my favorite plot line and many answers are found.  Finally we have  Corrick. Alas, poor Corrick! I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is!

to be

He doesn’t die but, well…..  you’ll see. Yes, that is Bob wearing a Tiara.

Wow this is getting to be a long review for me. So, let’s get to the Final Thoughts.

Final Thoughts

I loved this book and the series so far. A few parts seamed unnecessarily long (like this review) but still enjoyable. (hopefully like this review) Legions of Flame really is a page turner and had me up late 2 nights in a row. This is a world rich in history that is finally starting to be revealed. I could have wished for a bit more detailed information on a few things and a bit less detail on others. That, and I saw the end of Claydon’s plot line coming from the first 1/3 of the book are my only slight complaints. And the complaints are slight, I wouldn’t have noticed anything to complain about if I had not been reading with a critic’s eye. All in all, a great read. I give The Legion of Flame 4.75 stars out of 5

This book won’t be available until July 6th but can be preordered from the links below.

Amazon

Audible

Barnes & Noble

Kobo

Book Depository

Indigo

Half.com

Alibris

Better World Books

IndieBound

 

Hob’s Review of Black City Demon by Richard A Knaak

Black City Demon

by Richard A Knaak

 

Blurb

Since he became the guardian of the Gate between our world and Feirie sixteen hundred years ago, Nick Medea, once Saint George, has battled to keep the darkest Feirie–the Wyld–from invading the mortal plane. With the dragon an unwilling part of him, Nick maintains balance between realms, often at great cost to him and those nearest to him.
Nick and his ragtag confederates–including the shape-shifter Fetch and Nick’s reincarnated love, Claryce–have battled the Wyld, but mortals as sinister as the darkest Feirie. Now, with Prohibition in full swing and bootlegger wars embattling Chicago, a murderous evil born of the mortal world has turned its attention to the power of the Gate…and Nick himself.
Nick must turn again to his most untrustworthy ally: the dragon within. Yet even together they may not be enough to face what was once a man…but is now a creature even dragons may fear

Here is a photo of Bob wearing a real 1930’s hat that belonged to my grandmother while getting ready to read .

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Before I get to the Chin Music lets talk about the physical attributes or the Gams of the book.

The cover is pretty Spiffy and maybe you could even call it Hotsy-totsy. The editing was spot on I didn’t see one comma out of place and I was reading an ARC. I also liked the big print I guess my Kindle is kind of spoiling me with its zoom but I may need to get me a pair of Cheaters soon.

 

Now let’s Get a Wiggle on and get to the story morning glory.  I have Carried a Torch for this series since I read book one last year.  I still think book one is the cat’s meow but I have to say book two is just about Berries. I am not one to just Beat My Gums for no reason. If you like any type of crime or detective books I am sure you will like this series. Not to be a Wet Blanket but I don’t usually like those types of books. but this book is Air Tight with me anyway.

 

Let’s try a bit of normal talk, if I can still do it. Ab-so-lute-ly I can talk normal, See.

Now you all know I don’t like to describe the plot much and I don’t do spoilers. That said talking about a second book at all is hard. I will say I love the Characters. Nick is just as solid as I expected but not as level headed as I remember. I blame that on Claryce, she sure is a  Bearcat.  But also on the Dragon he really wants to toast the town (not in a good way) and is constantly trying to take charge. But once again Fetch the slang talking dog-thing stole the show.  I love that fuzzy …. whatever he is.

 

My only Beef with this book is the bad guy. It was just plain that he was bad and well, it didn’t take any detective-ing to know who it was. But a lot of trying to find out what he was up too. But I guess that’s how it was supposed to go because it was obvious from the start and the author was not trying to hide the fact. The ending Sockdollager alone was worth the read.

 

Did you know Goblins are great dancers? Here is a photo of a goblin Jane that was a famous Flapper back in the day. While she was sitting back drinking a cup of Noodle juice

gob

Final Thoughts

It is a great book, with great people filling the pages. The plot was good but kind of predictable. I feel this would be an enjoyable read for Fantasy fans as well as Mystery readers. I am going to give Black City Demon 4.25 stars out of 5

 

 

 

 

ab-so-lute-ly: affirmative, yes

absent treatment: dancing with a timid partner

air tight: very attractive

And how!: I strongly agree!

ankle: to walk, i.e.. “Let’s ankle!”

applesauce: flattery, nonsense, i.e.. “Aw, applesauce!”

Attaboy!: well done!; also, Attagirl!

bearcat: a fiery girl

beat it: scram, get lost.

beat one’s gums: idle chatter

bee’s knee’s: terrific; a fad expression. Dozens of “animal anatomy” variations existed such as: elephant’s eyebrows, gnat’s whistle, eel’s hips, etc.

beef: a complaint or to complain.

berries: (1) perfect (2) money

big cheese: important person

caper: a criminal act or robbery.

Carry a Torch: To have a crush on someone

cast a kitten: to have a fit. Used in both humorous and serious situations. i.e. “Stop tickling me or I’ll cast a kitten!” Also, “have kittens.”

cat’s meow: great, also “cat’s pajamas” and “cat’s whiskers”

Cat’s Pajamas: Same as cat’s meow

chassis: the female body

cheaters: eye glasses

chewing gum: double-speak, or ambiguous talk.

chin music: gossip

Flapper: the modern woman of the 1920s.

flat tire: a bore  A dull insipid, disappointing date. Same as pill, pickle, drag, rag, oilcan

gams: legs, assets

  get a wiggle on: get a move on, get going

hip to the jive: cool, trendy

Hotsy-totsy. Perfect; attractive, pleasing to the eye

Jake: great, ie. “Everything’s Jake.”

Jalopy: a dumpy old car

Jane: any female

java: coffee

jeepers creepers: exclamation

Nerts!: I am amazed!

nifty: great, excellent

Noodle juice: tea

Not so good!: I personally disapprove.

“Now you’re on the trolley!” Now you’ve got it, now you’re right

piffle: baloney

piker: (1) a cheapskate (2) a coward

pill: (1) a teacher (2) an unlikable person

pinch: to arrest. Pinched: to be arrested.

pinko: liberal

pipe down: stop talking

prom-trotter: a student who attends all school social functions

pos-i-lute-ly: affirmative, also “pos-i-tive-ly”

prune pit: anything that is old-fashioned

punch the bag: small talk

Pushover: A person easily convinced

razz: to make fun of

Real McCoy: a genuine item

regular: normal, typical, average;

screaming meemies: the shakes

screwy: crazy; “You’re screwy!”

Spiffy: An elegant appearance

spill: to talk

Sockdollager: an event or action of great importance

swanky: (1) good (2) elegant

swell: (1) good (2) a high class person

water-proof: a face that doesn’t require make-up

weasel: a young man who steals a girl from her boyfriend

wet blanket: see Killjoy

You slay me!: That’s funny

Black City Demon by Richard a. Knaak

Available for Pre-order.  will be released on March 14, 2017.

Hob’s review of Heart of Stone by Ben Galley

The Heart of Stone
by Ben Galley

The Blurb

Merciless. Murderer. Monster. He has been called many names in his time.

Built for war and nothing else, he has witnessed every shade of violence humans know, and he has wrought his own masterpieces with their colours. He cared once, perhaps, but far too long ago. He is bound to his task, dead to the chaos he wreaks for his masters.

Now, he has a new master to serve and a new war to endure. In the far reaches of the Realm, Hartlund tears itself in two over coin and crown. This time he will fight for a boy king and a general bent on victory.

Beneath it all he longs for change. For something to surprise him. For an end to this cycle of warfare.

Every fighter has a last fight. Even one made of stone.

I received an E-ARC copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

First things First. I had an ARC so I can’t really say anything about the errors there are some but almost all in the last quarter of the book and I am sure they will get fixed before publication. The cover was done by The wonderfully talented Shawn King. It is so simple yet compelling I really like the style of it. I did Goblinize® the cover but I feel that I need to apologize for it.

I am sorry Shawn and Ben.

hartg

Now to the Fun Stuff!

OK this is set in a pretty Grimdark world but almost all of the story takes place in one country named Hartlund.

map2

Now that you know where the story happens let me tell you a bit about who it happens to.  The main Character is a 400 year old Stone Golem. His name is Task and his “task” is to kill people. He is bound by the magic that made him to serve his master. So for 400 years he has been moved around and sold from one master to the next. And since he is thought of as a war machine that means he was sent from one war to the next.
Like I said before the world is a pretty Grimdark place with a lot of wars. Since Task was created all of the wizards that made golems have died and Task is the last of the Windcut stone Golems. When he arrives in Hartlund he is told that he is needed to turn the tide of a civil war that has been going on for 9 years already and his side is losing. His new master is a pompous ass hat just like all of his others and orders him to the stable until they march. That is where he meets Lesky a little girl that works the stable and she becomes his first friend in a very long time. That’s all I am going to say as far as plot goes.
This is the first book by Ben that I have read and I ended up really liking  his style of world building, but was a bit nervous at first. For example there are large lizard type things that are used like horses and he doesn’t sit and describe what they look like. They are slowly described throughout the book through things like someone touching their scales or saying how they moved. There are a few things like that and while I usually don’t like that type of world building he did it really well.
I am going to be honest and say there is a lot of violence in Heart of Stone, but it is there for a reason. Its not dismemberment for the sake of upping the gore factor.  Even with all of the gore and the battles I was amazed at my reaction to some of the later parts of the book. Just like with the descriptions of the lizard things happening slowly, my emotional attachment to some of the characters happened almost unnoticed by me, however  it was a deep attachment.. It wasn’t until one part when  something happened to someone when I felt a real tear that I knew I cared about these imaginary people. When I say things like “brought a tear to my eye” in reviews it usually means that I felt kind of choked up, but I really had a tear or two on my cheeks while reading this and that has not happened to me in a long time.

 

Final Thoughts
I really enjoyed Ben’s style of writing. It was almost sneaky the way he made me care about the characters.  This is a standalone book not a series which is kind of nice. It has been a while since I read one of those, and even longer since I read one anywhere near good as this book.  This is the first novel I have read by Ben Galley but it most certainly will not be the last. Heart of Stone is one action packed, bloody, emotional ride and I loved it. It receives 5 out of 5 Little Goblins© from me

The Heart of Stone

Mar 30, 2017

by Ben Galley

Available for Pre-order on Amazon. It will be released on March 30, 2017.

Atlas Post (Book Haul)

I was so excited when I saw this in the mail today. Skullsworn by Brian Staveley

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But then when I opened it up I saw that it was personalized. And while there is no doodle I love it.

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He is referring to a short story he wrote awhile back for Tor.com Called The Log Goblin.

READ IT HERE

So a Huge thank you to Brian for this. Can’t wait to read it!

I have also come across a …. few?…. of my old books while going through the storage unit. Most are mine but a few others I um will hold onto for safekeeping.

This whole shelf is new. Below I am going to post some of the other cool things I found like my Moms old giant CD things, Records I think they called them.

And check this out it is a Glass ship in a Glass bottle.

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Enjoy the rest

Hob’s Review of Red Sister by Mark Lawrence

 

Red Sister (Book of the Ancestor)

by Mark Lawrence

 

  • Publication date Apr 2017
  • Publisher HarperCollins Publishers
  • ImprintHarperVoyager
  • Publication City/Country London, United Kingdom
  • ISBN100008152306
  • ISBN139780008152307

 

Wow where to start? I am kinda at a loss for words. That might be because it is 7:15 am and I was reading for the last 6 hours straight and I am exhausted. But I think it’s more likely that my brain just can’t contain all of the awesome that I read in that 6 hour stretch.

Well I guess I will start like I always do with the Tactile and visual parts of the review.  I love the cover It is a great visual description of the book without giving anything away. Plus it’s just some damn good art. It could have been improved a bit, but I went a head and fixed it.

red-siste2r

There were 5 or 6 Grammatical things I noticed. But all small things like bought her hand down instead of brought and in in instead of it in. I did have an ARC not the Final version of the book. I am just mentioning it so that in the unlikely event they haven’t been fixed already they will be before its published, I am not taking any points off.

“I have been too young to know, and I have been too old to care. It’s in that oh so narrow slice between that memories are made. So enjoy it.” – Sister Pan

I love Marks writing because on a almost subconscious level there is a meter or tempo to it. It’s not like a rhyming poem or anything, and it’s really hard to put a finger on what “it” is. I think “it” is the sentence structure its self. He writes like a great Orator speaks. The cadence of the words pulling you in to his stories  almost hypnotically. It has taken me reading 7 books by Mr. Lawrence to actually come to that conclusion.  I am probably wrong and its just a compulsion spell.. And while I am not accusing him of witchcraft or sorcery, per se. His prose has definitely cast its spell on me.

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You would not believe the amount of times that I have read a series by an author then read their new series, and it felt like…. well like the same books almost. At the very least, many authors fall in to old speech patterns using new mouths.  I have actually thought about this way too much in the past, and I came up with an explanation for it. The characters from the old books are in the FBI’s (Fictional Body Importation) Protagonist Protection Program.  (Rolls right off the tongue doesn’t it?) Their names have been changed for their own safety and they have been moved to a new world to start over. But just like Steve Martin in My Blue Heaven they soon get up to their old tricks again.

hob-heaven

In Mark’s first two trilogies he managed to make the protagonists so completely different from each other I was amazed. And Yes he did it again with Red Sister. I know I know, the protagonist in this book starts out as a 7 or 8 year old girl and yes it takes place on a completely different world. So it sounds like it would be easy to make them unique. But even the Narrative flow in Red Sister was different from the Broken Empire books. While still having the Orator’s Tempo I talked about before. It really did amaze me.

“But be warned, young Nona: a book is as dangerous as any journey you might take. The person who closes the back cover may not be the one that opened the front one.” – Sister Kettle

Ok Like I just mentioned, Red Sister takes place on a completely new world. New to us that is. Its actually so old it is dying, really in fact it is the Sun that is dying. Causing the slow formation of a Ice Planet like Hoth from  StarWars. The only glacier free area of the planet is a 50 mile wide strip that goes all the way around the planet. I Picture it just like Beggar’s Canyon back home.  Only wider obviously.

And the only Reason that 50 miles is still open is because of a moon…… “That’s no moon kid” That’s a focus lens! Every night it gathers the light from the dying sun focusing it in to a single beam that sweeps over the area with enough heat to keep the glacier from closing in on them. If that’s not bad enough, the “moon” is in a decaying orbit and will soon return to the planet and then the ice will close on the people like a giant trash compactor.. “C-3PO come in C-3PO where are you C-3PO OH where could he be?” Sorry can you tell I went and saw Rogue One again today?

Final Thoughts

It is not only a great story, but beautifully written as well. I loved the ending but at the same time I wish I hadn’t gotten to it yet. It was by no means a small book but I read it in three sittings, and that only made me want more.

Mark Lawrence has been the author of my choices for book of the year for the last 2 years in a row. Red Sister was the first book I finished this year but it is possible he might get my vote a third time. Red Sister gets a Outstanding recommendation from this goblin with 5 stars out of 5

P.S. if you’re a Mark Lawrence fan don’t forget to enter my free drawing to win a Broken Empire themed book cover! A $90.00 value for free! Just go to my blog post  here and make a comment and you will be entered.

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