I am soooo behind on my "books received" list. I got backed-up around the holidays and never got caught up. I have a few month's worth of books to list, so I'll be breaking this up into a few posts. Here's my first list in no particular order..
Blood Prophecy by Stephan Petrucha
Man and monster are in his blood. . .
His name is Jeremiah Fall. A soldier of fortune, he has been fighting his own war for 150 years—ever since the beast in him was born.
Desperate to restore his lost humanity, Fall crosses the sands of Egypt, discovers a lost city off the coast of France, and finally arrives at the birthplace of all mankind. Shunning daylight and feeding only when he must, he battles the monster who transformed him forever. He can share his deepest secret with no one . . . not even the beautiful woman he starts to love, the only human who grasps the mysteries of an ebony stone as old as creation itself.
Across the world, across time, Fall seeks the stone's secret. But has he found a cure for himself or unleashed a final curse on all mankind?
Liberating Atlantis by Harry Turtledove
*Starred Review* Followers of Turtledove’s Atlantis trilogy (Opening Atlantis, 2007; The United States of Atlantis, 2008; and this book) won’t be surprised that it concludes with an Atlantean Civil War. Nor will those familiar with Turtledove’s oeuvre be surprised that his expertise on the American Civil War makes the third book the trilogy’s best. To get a this-world fix on its animating conceit, imagine that Nat Turner was George Washington’s mulatto grandson, who, threatened with death, determined to be free and raised a formidable slave army. Such is what Frederic Ratcliff does in Atlantis, where the Slave Power isn’t as formidable as the American South was and racism isn’t as strong. Ratcliff and his Native American general, Lorenzo, face a respectable professional army led by hard-bitten Balthasar Sinapis, a European exile with a mysterious past. At the nominal head of that army on alternating days are pro-slavery consul Jeremiah Stafford and his anti-slavery partner, Leland Newton. Political bickering, effective guerrilla tactics, and unfamiliar terrain lead to a situation in which the army must negotiate peace or be slaughtered. Then the light dawns on both parties that fighting to decisive victory or defeat will ruin Atlantis for everyone. The Treaty of Slug Hollow is hammered out and presented to the Senate. More obstacles remain, and the Senate offers a mixture of horror-struck opposition, hair-tearing doubt, and sighs of relief. In the end, readers may, overwhelmingly, join in joyously launching their hats skyward.
Alien Tango by Gini Koch
It's been five months since marketing manager Katherine "Kitty" Katt started working with the aliens from Alpha Centauri, and she and Jeff Martini are getting closer. But when an experimental spacecraft is mysteriously returned to the Kennedy Space Center, Kitty and the rest of her team are called in to investigate. Now the team must survive murderous attacks, remove a space entity from a group of astronauts, and avoid an unhinged woman with a serious crush on Kitty's high school boyfriend. And that's all before evil masterminds decide Kitty's extermination is vital.
Finding the Way and Other Tales of Valdemar by Mercedes Lackey
In March 1987, a young author from Oklahoma published her first novel, Arrows of the Queen. This modest book about a magical land called Valdemar was the beginning of a fantasy masterwork series that would span decades and include more than two dozen titles. Now readers can take a journey to the world of Valdemar-including Tanya Huff, Mickey Zucker Reichert, Fiona Patton, and Judith Tarr-each adding their own special touches.
Managing Death by Trent Jamieson
It's not easy being Death. For starters, people keep dying. And then, they keep getting up again.
Steven de Selby got promoted. This makes the increasing number of stirrers (and the disturbing rumors of a zombie god rising sometime soon) his problem. That time management seminar he keeps meaning to take would also remind him that he's got a Death Moot to plan, a Christmas party to organize, and an end-of-the-world thing to avert.
Steven must start managing Death, before Death starts managing him, or this time the Apocalypse will be more than Regional.
The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie
This blood-drenched, thought-provoking dissection of a three-day battle is set in the same world as Abercrombie's First Law Trilogy (The Blade Itself, etc.), but stands very well alone. Union commander Lord Marshal Kroy coordinates the fight with the aid of a motley group of incompetent, self-important officers. The strangely sympathetic Col. Bremer dan Gorst is officially a royal observer who nurses a burning desire to kill or be killed. Leading a much smaller army against the Union is Black Dow, whose grip on the throne of the Northmen is tenuous and based on fear and brutality. Calder, a slippery and cunning egotist, advocates peace while plotting to take Black Dow's place. Abercrombie never glosses over a moment of the madness, passion, and horror of war, nor the tribulations that turn ordinary people into the titular heroes.
The Bards of Bone Plain by Patricia McKillip
The newest novel from the World Fantasy Award-winning author of The Bell at Sealey Head.
With "her exquisite grasp of the fantasist's craft"* (Publishers Weekly) Patricia A. McKillip now invites readers to discover a place that may only exist in the mystical wisdom of poetry and music.
Scholar Phelan Cle is researching Bone Plain-which has been studied for the last 500 years, though no one has been able to locate it as a real place. Archaeologist Jonah Cle, Phelan's father, is also hunting through time, piecing history together from forgotten trinkets. His most eager disciple is Princess Beatrice, the king's youngest daughter. When they unearth a disk marked with ancient runes, Beatrice pursues the secrets of a lost language that she suddenly notices all around her, hidden in plain sight.
Griffin's Flight by K.J. Taylor
Although he was once chosen as a griffin's companion, Arren Cardockson was reviled, betrayed, and ultimately killed. Brought back to life by a power beyond his understanding, Arren flees for the frozen sanctuary of the North. With the man-eating griffin Skandar by his side, and an entire country hunting him, Arren has little hope of reaching the place of his ancestry and of lifting his curse. But then he comes across a wild woman who may hold the key to making his lifeless heart beat once more.
Seer of Sevenwaters by Juliet Marillier
Get swept away in the romantic fantasy of this national bestselling author's world of Sevenwaters
The young seer Sibeal is visiting an island of elite warriors, prior to making her final pledge as a druid. It's there she finds Felix, a survivor of a Viking shipwreck, who's lost his memory. The scholarly Felix and Sibeal form a natural bond. He could even be her soul mate, but Sibeal's vocation is her true calling, and her heart must answer.
As Felix fully regains his memory, Sibeal has a runic divination showing her that Felix must go on a perilous mission-and that she will join him. The rough waters and the sea creatures they will face are no match for Sibeal's own inner turmoil. She must choose between the two things that tug at her soul-her spirituality and a chance at love...
Right Hand Magic by Nancy Collins
Like most Manhattanites, aspiring artist Tate can't resist a good rental deal-even if it's in the city's strangest neighborhood, Golgotham, where for centuries werewolves, centaurs, and countless other creatures have roamed the streets.
Her new landlord is a sorcerer name Hexe, who is determined to build his reputation without using dark, left-hand magic. As Tate is drawn into Hexe's fascinating world, they both find that the right hand does not always know what the left hand is doing-and avoiding darkness is no easy trick...
Demon Underground by S.L. Wright
Half-human and half-demon, Allay has finally warmed up to her new life feeding off the customers at her downtown bar whens he finds herself brokering a truce between New York City's most powerful demons. But when she senses assassins around every corner, Allay hides out of sight and underground-until combatants in the growing war tempt her back above the surface...
Rising Tides by Taylor Anderson
In Taylor Anderson's acclaimed Destroyermen series, a parallel universe adds an extraordinary layer to the drama of World War II. Now, as Lieutenant Commander Matthew Reddy and the crew of the U.S.S. Walker continue their battle for both freedom and survival, the stakes become much more personal...and much more perilous.
Seed Seeker by Pamela Sargent
An adventure in colonization and conflict from acclaimed SF writer Pamela Sargent
Several hundred years ago, Ship, a sentient starship, settled humans on the planet Home before leaving to colonize other worlds, promising to return one day. Over time, the colony on Home divided into those who live in the original domed buildings of the colony, who maintain the library and technology of Ship, and those who live by the river, farming and hunting to survive. The Dome Dwellers consider themselves the protectors of “true humanity” and the River People “contaminated,” and the two sides interact solely through ritualized trade: food and goods from the River People in exchange for repairs and recharges by the Dome Dwellers.
Then a new light appears in the night sky. The River People believe it might be Ship, keeping its promise to return, but the Dome Dwellers, who have a radio to communicate with Ship, are silent. So Bian, a seventeen-year-old girl from a small village, travels upriver to learn what they know. As she travels through the colony of Home, gaining companions and gathering news, Bian ponders why the Dome Dwellers have said nothing. Has Ship commanded them to be silent, in preparation for some judgment on the River People? Or are the Dome Dwellers lying to Ship, turning Ship against their rivals?
Whatever the answer, life is about to change radically on both sides of the divide.
The Cassini Code by Dom Testa
When the tail of the comet Bhaktul flicks through the Earth’s atmosphere, deadly particles are left in its wake, and mankind is confronted with a virus that devastates the adult population. A renowned scientist proposes a bold plan: to build a ship that will carry a crew of 251 teenagers to a home in a distant solar system. Two years later, Galahad and its crew is launched. If their mission fails, it will be the end of the human race…
The teenage crew of Galahad has survived their first encounter with an alien race. Though shaken by the power of The Cassini, Triana and her Council are determined to continue their mission. But some of the crew don’t agree. Led by the charismatic Merit Simms, a small group of crew members begins lobbying for a return to Earth—just as the ship enters the Kuiper Belt, the deadly minefield of asteroids that surrounds the solar system.
As Galahad dodges a storm of asteroids, Triana finds herself dealing with an increasingly hostile crew. Even some members of the Council are beginning to listen to Merit’s arguments. Can Triana find a way to prevent a mutiny aboard Galahad, and lead her crew to safety?
Empress of Eternity by L.E. Modesitt Jr.
In the far future, an indestructible and massive canal more than 2,000 miles long spans the mid-continent of Earth. Nothing can mar it, move it, or affect it in any fashion. At its western end, where it meets the sea, is an equally indestructible structure comprising three levels of seemingly empty chambers.
Scientists from three different civilizations, separated in time by hundreds of thousands of years, are investigating the canal. In the most distant of these civilizations, religious rebellion is brewing. A plot is hatched to overthrow the world government of the Vanir, using a weapon that can destroy anything-except the canal. If used at full power it might literally unravel the universe and destroy all life forever. The lives and fates of all three civilizations become intertwined as the forces behind the canal react to the threat, and all three teams of scientists find their lives changed beyond belief.
Shadowheart by Tad Williams
The long-awaited concluding novel in Tad Williams's thrilling epic Shadowmarch series.
Southmarch Castle is about to be caught between two implacable enemies, the ancient, immortal Qar and the insane god-king, the Autarch of Xis. Meanwhile, its two young defenders, Princess Briony and Prince Barrick, are both trapped far away from home and fighting for their lives.
And now, something is awakening underneath Southmarch Castle, something powerful and terrible that the world has not seen for thousands of years. Can Barrick and Briony, along with a tiny handful of allies, ordinary and extraordinary, find a way to save their world and prevent the rise of a terrible new age-an age of unending darkness?
March In Country by E.E. Knight
The national bestselling "master of deception and tension" (Black Gate) returns to the Vampire Earth... The race is on to claim the area between the Ohio River and Tennessee. What's left of the resistance is hiding out in the tangle of central Kentucky hills- leaving the powerful, well-organized Kurian vampires the opportunity to fill the void. Major David Valentine knows there's only one way for them to find help before the Kurians settle in: a desperate dash by hijacked rail, followed by a harrowing river journey. Valentine unites friends old and new in the effort- but the Kurian Order won't easily yield the blood-soaked Kentucky soil.
The Broken Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin
In the city of Shadow, beneath the World Tree, alleyways shimmer with magic and godlings live hidden among mortalkind. Oree Shoth, a blind artist, takes in a strange homeless man on an impulse. This act of kindness engulfs Oree in a nightmarish conspiracy. Someone, somehow, is murdering godlings, leaving their desecrated bodies all over the city. And Oree's guest is at the heart of it. . .
The Kensei by Jon F. Merz
Meet Lawson. A cynical, wise-cracking vampire charged with protecting the Balance between vampires and humans, he is part cop, part spy, and part commando — James Bond with fangs. Lawson mixes shrewd cunning with unmatched lethality to get his job done. He tries his best to dismantle conspiracies, dispatch bad guys, and live long enough to get home. In The Kensei, a battle-weary Lawson heads to Japan for a little rest and some advanced ninja training. But he no sooner steps off the plane than lands in the midst of a Yakuza turf war orchestrated by a shadowy figure known as the Kensei. With the help of Talya, a former KGB-assassin, Lawson must put a stop to the Kensei’s organ trafficking networks, prevent the creation of an army of vampire-human hybrids, and save his own skin in the process.
Shadowrise by Tad Williams
The penultimate volume in Tad Williams's first epic fantasy series since his bestselling Memory, Sorrow and Thorn.
With King Olin imprisoned and Prince Kendrick slain, the royal twins Barrick and Briony have been forced to flee their homeland. But both families and nations can hide dark and terrible secrets. Even if Barrick and Briony survive learning the astonishing truths at the heart of their own family and of Southmarch itself, they must find a way to reclaim their kingdom and rescue their home-from traitors, tyrants, a god-king, and even the angry gods themselves.
The Silver Mage by Katherine Kerr
The Horsekin are assembling along Prince Dar's northern border, and the Deverry alliance doesn't have the men or resources to prevent their enemies from moving into the wilderness areas known as the Ghostlands. But then the Dwrgi folk and the dragons come to Dar's aid, tipping the balance in their favor and offering Dar's people a chance to defeat the Horsekin once and for all.
Trolls in the Hamptoms by Celia Jerome
Willow Tate is a graphic novelist who earns enough money at her craft to keep her rent-controlled Manhattan apartment and still put food in the fridge. But when she decides to write about a ten-foot-tall troll who's a superhero, one suddenly appears, causing mayhem in Manhattan. When no one else can see the stony red giant, Willy thinks she's gone crazy, until she meets Agent Grant from the Department of Unexplained Events. According to him, Willy has managed to break ages-old cosmic laws that could destroy the Earth as we know it. Now she has to help him save the world, rescue a little boy, and stop a murdering kidnapper who wants to use the power of a little village in the Hamptons to become master of the universe...
Gilded Latten Bones by Glenn Cook
For Garrett, P.I., loyalty and love come a close second to survival...
Garrett's attempt at domestic bliss with the fiery Tinnie Tate is sidetracked when he waylays a pair of home intruders and learns they've been paid by an unknown source to kidnap Tinnie. But as Garrett rushes to find out who is trying to push his buttons, his best friend is attacked. Now, Garrett has to track down both malefactors.
Unless they're really one and the same-in which case Garrett might be next...
Side Jobs by Jim Butcher
The first short story collection in the #1 New York Times bestselling series-including a brand-new Harry Dresden novella!
Here, together for the first time, are the shorter works of #1 New York Times bestselling author Jim Butcher-a compendium of cases that Harry and his cadre of allies managed to close in record time. The tales range from the deadly serious to the absurdly hilarious. Also included is a new, never-before-published novella that takes place after the cliff-hanger ending of the new April 2010 hardcover, Changes. This is a must-have collection for every devoted Harry Dresden fan as well as a perfect introduction for readers ready to meet Chicago's only professional wizard.
Magic at the Gate by Devon Monk
Allie Beckstrom's lover, Zayvion Jones, is a Guardian of the Gate, imbued with both light and dark magic and responsible for ensuring that those energies don't mix. But Zayvion lies in a coma, his soul trapped in death's realm. And when Allie discovers that the only way to save Zayvion is to sacrifice her very own magical essence, she makes a decision that may have grave consequences for the entire world.
Betrayer of Worlds by Larry Niven and Edward M. Lerner
Fleeing the supernova chain reaction at the galactic core, the cowardly Puppeteers of the Fleet of Worlds have---just barely---survived. They’ve stumbled from one crisis to the next: The rebellion of their human slaves. The relentless questing of the species of Known Space. The spectacular rise of the starfish-like Gw’oth. The onslaught of the genocidal Pak.
Catastrophe looms again as past crises return---and converge. Who can possibly save the Fleet of Worlds from its greatest peril yet?
Louis Wu? Trapped in the Wunderland civil war, all he wants is to go home---but the only possible escape will plunge him into unknowable danger.
Ol’t’ro? The Gw’oth ensemble mind fled across the stars to establish a colony world free from tyranny. But some problems cannot be left behind, and other problems---like the Fleet of Worlds itself---are racing straight at them.
Achilles? Despite past disgrace, the charismatic Puppeteer politician knows he is destined for greatness. He will do anything to seize power---and to take his revenge on everyone who ever stood in his way.
Nessus? The insane Puppeteer scout is out of ideas, out of resources, with only desperation left to guide him.
Their hopes and fears, dreams and ambitions are about to collide. And the winner takes . . . worlds.
Out of the Dark by David Webber
Master Sergeant Stephen Buchevsky, who thought he was being rotated home from his latest tour in Afghanistan, finds himself instead prowling the back country of the Balkans, dodging alien patrols and trying to organize the scattered survivors without getting killed.
Grave Witch by Kalayana Price
Not even death can save her now.
As a grave witch, Alex Craft can speak to the dead-she's even on good terms with Death himself. As a consultant for the police, she's seen a lot of dark magic, but nothing has prepared her for her latest case. When she's raising a "shade" involved in a high profile murder, it attacks her, and then someone makes an attempt on her life. Someone really doesn't want her to know what the dead have to say, and she'll have to work with mysterious homicide detective Falin Andrews to figure out why...
Troubled Waters by Sharon Shinn
The author of the Twelve Hours series welcomes readers to a new fantasy world, where the elements rule. Zoe Ardelay receives astonishing and unwelcome news: she has been chosen to become the king's fifth wife. Forced to go to the royal city, she manages to slip away and hide on the shores of the mighty river. It's there that Zoe realizes she is a coru prime ruled by the elemental sign of water. She must return to the palace, not as an unwilling bride for the king, but a woman with power in her own right. But as Zoe unlocks more of the mysteries of her blood-and the secrets of the royal family-she must decide how to use her great power to rise above the deceptions and intrigue of the royal court.
Black Wings by Christina Henry
As an Agent of Death, Madeline Black is responsible for escorting the souls of the dearly departed to the afterlife. It's a 24/7 job with a lousy benefits package.
Maddy's position may come with magical powers and an impressive wingspan, but it doesn't pay the bills. And then there are her infuriating boss, tenant woes, and a cranky, popcorn-loving gargoyle to contend with. Things start looking up, though, when tall, dark, and handsome Gabriel Angeloscuro agrees to rent the empty apartment in Maddy's building. It's probably just a coincidence that as soon as he moves in demons appear on the front lawn. But when an unholy monster is unleashed upon the streets of Chicago, Maddy discovers powers she never knew she possessed. Powers linked to a family legacy of tarnished halos.
Powers that place her directly between the light of Heaven and the fires of Hell...
The Dark Griffin by K.J. Taylor
Being chosen as a griffin's companion has allowed Arren Cardockson to gain a place of status within the land of Cymria. But Arren can never escape the prejudice that comes with his Northerner slave origins. For chained within the Arena where rogue griffins battle to entertain the crowds, there lies another soul crying out to be freed-a kindred spirit that will allow Arren to fulfill his destiny and release the darkness in his heart.
Geist by Philippa Ballantine
Between the living and the dead is the Order of the Deacons, protectors of the Empire, guardians against possession, sentinels enlisted to ward off the malevolent haunting of the geists...
Among the most powerful of the Order is Sorcha, now thrust into partnership with the novice Deacon, Merrick Chambers. They have been dispatched to the isolated village of Ulrich to aide the Priory with a surge of violent geist activity. With them is Raed Rossin, Pretender to the throne that Sorcha is sworn to protect, and bearer of a terrible curse.
But what greets them in the strange settlement is something far more predatory and more horrifying than any mere haunting. And as she uncovers a tradition of twisted rituals passed down through the dark reaches of history, Sorcha will be forced to reconsider everything she thinks she knows.
And if she makes it out of Ulrich alive, what in Hell is she returning to?
The Clone Empire by Steven Kent
After a blistering defeat by alien forces, clone soldier Lt. Wayson Harris and his brethren have been exiled to the far reaches of the galaxy where the Unified Authority intends to use them as targets for live-fire training exercises. But the clones they created and trained to fight have founded their own empire. Now, Harris will unleash his rage against the might of the U.A. Fleet, leading an army with everything to fight for, and one thing to die for-revenge.
Kris Longknife: Redoubtable by Mike Shepherd
Lieutenant Commander Kris Longknife has precise orders: seek out, engage, and destroy pirates, slavers, and drug lords operating beyond the rim of human space-without interfering in Peterwald family affairs. But when slavers kidnap a twelve-year-old girl, Kris's mission becomes personal. And if destroying the pirate compound flattens some Peterwald interests-well, to hell with politics.
Version 43 by Philip Palmer
The Exodus Universe.
Your odds of surviving quantum teleportation are, more or less, fifty/fifty. The only ones crazy enough to try it are the desperate, the insane, and those sentenced to exile for their crimes.
Belladonna is home to the survivors of the fifty/fifty— and is therefore a planet run by criminals and thieves. But when a horrific and improbable murder catches the attention of the Galactic Police force, one cyborg cop — Version 43 — is sent to investigate.
Version 43 has been here before and has old friends and older enemies lying in wait. The cop was human once, but now, he is more program than man and will find a way to clean up this planet once and for all.
Farlander by Col Buchanan
The Heart of the World is a land in strife. For fifty years the Holy Empire of Mann, an empire and religion born from a nihilistic urban cult, has been conquering nation after nation. Their leader, Holy Matriarch Sasheen, ruthlessly maintains control through her Diplomats, priests trained as subtle predators.
Ash is a member of an elite group of assassins, the Roshun, who offer protection through the threat of vendetta. Forced by his ailing health to take on an apprentice, he chooses Nico, a young man living in the besieged city of Bar-Khos. At the time, Nico is hungry, desperate, and alone in a city that finds itself teetering on the brink.
When the Holy Matriarch’s son deliberately murders a woman under the protection of the Roshun; he forces the sect to seek his life in retribution. As Ash and his young apprentice set out to fulfill the Roshun orders, their journey takes them into the heart of the conflict between the Empire and the Free Ports…into bloodshed and death.