The Sorcerer’s Garden by D. Wallace Peach

I have a new belief.

The word “entrails” should not be used more often than necessary, possibly never and certainly not more than once a book.

I’m not sure how often “entrails” was mentioned in The Sorcerer’s Garden but it was, per my new belief, too many times.

I am well aware that not everyone has the same beliefs as me (My own husband, for instance, can not seem to grasp the fact that sheets should never be tucked into the bottom of the bed when you go to sleep or your feet will suffocate in the confined space). To each his own. If you are of the type that does like such things, I have a book here for you that is chock full of amazingly detailed, exciting, graphic fight scenes, complete with gushing blood, rolling heads and… entrails.

If you have a similar belief system as I do, I have a book here that is hard to put down. There is a story within the story and when the main character starts showing up in the story within the story, well even a bit of entrails couldn’t stop me finding out what happened next.  And if that sentence confused you a little bit, I understand, it was a little bit confusing, but in a good muddled-for-a-purpose sort of way.

Would I recommend it? Here’s the thing, entrails aside, I didn’t love the wrapping up of the plot. Not the actual ending, that was great, but the part that would have been the Clue master proclaiming “It was Mr Green in the conservatory with the lead pipe!”  Which was sad because the rest of the book was engaging with likable characters and sprinkled with humor. But who knows, maybe it was just me. I always was more of a Colonel Mustard type, perhaps you’ll like it, just watch out for those entrails!

Rosie's Book Review team 1

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Hey did you know that not only do I love books but I love sharing books too!?! November’s Book at the Door giveaway is open- come and enter I’d love to send you a book too!!!

 

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Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

This series starts with a young woman who was clearly caught up in all sorts of craziness. She has no family, blue hair, wicked fighting skills and delivers teeth to a bunch of chimeras on the other side of a magical door. Yet for some maddening reason knows nothing about anything.

I rolled my eyes.

Clueless protagonist, classic fantasy tale set up. Fine, it works, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it.

And then she meets the guy…He is of course super tall, super gorgeous, super mean looking, and, oh yes, an angel who’s in the process of trying to kill her. Of course he doesn’t because a thread of warm, fuzzy feeling pierces his cold, rotten heart once he gets a good look at her.

*cue eye rolling*

But…

Perhaps it was that I am always a sucker for a fantasy/romance/young adult or perhaps it was that the clueless protagonist and the otherworldly gorgeous man thing just works.

Or perhaps it was that once we got into the story and the main character got clued in (Not how I expected either!) and we learn more of the back story, everything was just different enough from the norm that I was willing to leave my eye rolls behind and fall headlong into the tale.

Would I recommend it? I actually ran across this series on a list of YA books for people who don’t think they like YA. And I have to say, for a young adult book it’s not heavy on the young part. The main characters are more college age and … errr …. up (Nobody really counts how old when you are talking angels…or .. resurrected souls in chimera bodies, right?).  Angel ages aside, I would agree, young adult fandom is not required for this one.  There is even a pleasing and almost surprising amount of depth for a young adult, fantasy/romance read. You probably should like fantasy though, what with the multi-world thing and the angels and the resurrected chimera (which come in all sorts of animal/human configurations) and the magic and the wishing and all that. Give it a try, even if the first few chapters make you roll your eyes and scoff, give it a chance, it gets better.

Much better!

Hey did you know that not only do I love books but I love sharing books too!?! November’s Book at the Door giveaway is open- come and enter I’d love to send you a book too!!!

The Gunslinger by Stephen King and Book at the Door Winner

The May winner of the Book at the Door giveaway is…I won a Book at the Door with Behind the Willows

Crystin Goodwin!  (Who, I might add, has released the latest in her Blessings of Myrillia series recently and while I’ll shamefully admit I haven’t yet read Ice Blessed I’m certainly going to because UnBlessed and Fire Blessed were oh so very good!)

Crystin will get both a copy of Stephen Kings, The Gunslinger and A. Mouse’s first line art mailed to her door! Thanks for playing Crystin and thanks again to the talented Mouse for her artwork!

"The man in black fled across the desert and the gunslinger followed." -Stephen King

“The man in black fled across the desert and the gunslinger followed.” -Stephen King

As for The Gunslinger I know the name Stephen King brings horror to mind and that puts a large number of people off. I certainly can’t tell you there isn’t an aspect of horror to this book. But I, who hardly ever reads horror, at least on purpose, still recommend it.

The Gunslinger is the first of seven books in The Dark Tower series. ( I did mention epic fantasy in the first post right?) And I know those words, “epic fantasy” put another slew of people off, but this isn’t epic fantasy like I’ve ever encountered before. There is world building, and then there is what King did. He created a story that wove a tapestry around most of his stories, and people.  And since the guy has written a lot of books – it’s mind blowing. But, you don’t need to have extensive knowledge of his books in order to enjoy this one. In fact I would say it’s hard to appreciate the world building as you read through the series, because his (horrifically) good writing makes it too easy to get swept away in the drama, the cadence of a slightly different way of speech and the unfolding adventure. It’s not until later ,when the book is set down, that you can roll it all over in your mind and marvel at the scope of it all.

Would I recommend it? Yes. Even if you think it’s not your thing, give it a try, you might be surprised.

 

 


Book at the Door winner was chosen using a random number generator from http://www.random.org 

Artists of all kinds (Yes, you photographers and you who says you can’t draw and you who just wants to practice hand lettering and you who is selling paintings online and…all of you!) if you are interested in providing a small piece of work that includes a first sentence I would love to hear from you!  

Authors, have I read your book and tagged it as a recommended read? Would you like to donate a hard copy? Let me know! 

Raelia by Lynette Noni

The worst thing about this whole Medoran Chronicles series, of which Raelia is book two, is that the author, Lynette Noni, lives in Australia.

I on the other hand live in the USA, far from Australia. So far from Australia that hard copies of her books aren’t even sold here.

This is a terrible problem because these are books that need to be shared.

These are the kind of books that I want to be able to loan to the next young adult who walks through the door.

These are the kind of books I want to hand to the next adult who enjoys YA fantasy.

These are the kind of books that I want to lend my Harry Potter fan friends.

Then I want to pass them off to a person who claims not to like fantasy but that is enough of a reader that they will give them a try when I tell them how great the characters are.

And then, once everyone is done gushing, I want to put them nicely on my bookshelf where I would smile fondly at them whenever I passed by until the next reader dropped by my house looking for a good book.

Would I recommend it? Not only would I recommend both Raelia and Akarnae (which you should really read first) I encourage you to buy them, especially if you are outside of Australia. Perhaps then, one day, we’ll get some paper copies on the shelves here!

Also, if you, like me, are fond of “real” books come check out my Book at the Door giveaway, I’ve got books to share!

Round Trip Fare by Barb Taub

You know how when you wait and wait for a sequel to come out and then it finally comes and you read it and it’s so great that you just have to go back and re-read all the books that came before it while wondering why you didn’t do that before it came out to make the reading of it even more enjoyable and then debate with yourself if you really should just re-read the sequel again even though you just finished it mere days ago …

Yeah.

This book is just like that.Round_Trip_Fare-Barb_Taub-500x800

Would I recommend it? Yes! This book can be read as a stand alone but, it’ll be much better if you read the rest of the Null City books first.

Or second.

Or first and second.

Basically you just need to read them all because once you enter Barb Taub’s world of urban fantasy where super powers sometimes just suck, angles aren’t always what you’d expect them to be, and with a short ride on a sentient Metro you can arrive at Null City where superpowers will fade into a thing of the past,  you aren’t going to want to leave. The men are just too good looking (and tattooed), the imps make fabulous coffee (once they’ve been living in Null City for a bit anyway), the women kick butt (with large amounts of sass and style) and the dogs are awesome. Sure, you may very occasionally raise an eyebrow at the “convenience” of a character’s actions but don’t let it get to you. Focus on the snarky dialogue, the tattoos and the Firefly references and you’ll be having too much fun to care!

Round Trip Fare comes out on Thursday (Yeah, I totally got an advanced copy. And yeah, it’s pretty much reader heaven.) Luckily for you the first of the bunch, One Way Fare, is FREE right now!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Cogling by Jordan Elizabeth

Steampunk is a literary genre that confused me, if I thought of it at all.

When it did cross my mind all I could envision was people dressed in outfits involving lots of leather, corsets, top hats, a few random gears thrown in and goggles. Always the goggles. But the why of it all escaped me. I turned to the internet and Dictonary.com gave me a definition…

“A subgenre of science fiction and fantasy featuring advanced machines and other technology based on steam power of the 19th century and taking place in a recognizable historical period or a fantasy world.”

… clear as mud now right?

But what I’ve decided is, at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what Steampunk is or isn’t because as the writing gets better, the genre matters less. Not to say that I wouldn’t have wanted the author to describe this alternate history full of magic and technology as well as she did. No, quite to the contrary. Because she described it so well and because her characters were so rich, there was no confusion. I didn’t read a “steampunk” book.

I read a book about a sister whose brother was kidnapped. I read about oppression and freedom. Class warfare and  outright warfare. I read about evil beings that weren’t and good citizens that weren’t either. I read about trust and I read about love.

Sure, there were some crazy gizmos in amongst all that but, at the end of the day, the gizmos weren’t what had me flipping pages long after I should have turned in for the night.

Would I recommend it? Don’t let a funny word like steampunk scare you off, give it a try, I think you’ll like it.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

 

Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas

Hi, Honey!

So, don’t be mad but I really feel like the best way to tell, you know, all the people, how good these books are involves you. And by involves you, I really mean me telling you the thing I try not to say too often to the man who is the most wonderful husband ever.

You see, I know that I was a bit girly about the love I had for the completely awesome female assassin main character when I tried to push the book on you. I can see now that perhaps that wasn’t quite the right track to take with you. I could have mentioned more of the plot, or a few of the fairly awesome male characters. Probably I should have told you that thing about the beautiful witches with their iron teeth and nails and how they just “play” with men before, you know, eating them (unless, of course, they are just out killing for fun). And how by the end of the books you won’t hate them and how I think that’s pretty indicative of some amazing writing.

But I didn’t.

I just kept telling you that you were going to love it and badgered you until you finally started reading the first one. Then, of course, I’m sure you remember how I annoyed you until you read it faster so you could get to the amazing parts. That was foolish of me. I’m sorry. But, not even, when you went to the library in another town to pick up book three because you’d be able to get your hands on it sooner did I actually say “I told you so!” like I totally could have.

So sorry, for telling, you know, all the people, about all that. But I want them to believe me (or, really, it’d be believing us now right?) about how great these books are and how they should definitely read them!

Thanks for your help!

Love you!

Would I recommend them? Yes! (And I think John might too, if he’s still speaking to me after this…)