Books

Review: Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis

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Review: Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis

Happy New Year everyone! Let’s ring in 2017 with a review of Anne Rice’s latest installment in the Vampire Chronicles.

The previous book in this series ended with Lestat becoming the host of the ancient force that connects all vampires throughout the world. The famous Brat Prince is now Prince Lestat, linked to the spirit Amel – who the vampires learned is fully sentient and aware. Anything that harms Lestat will now harm all other vampires, so Lestat will have to bear that responsibility for the rest of his existence.

You all knew that situation wouldn’t last.

Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis introduces another race, sheds new light on the origin of the vampires, and completely alters the course of their future. After this, everything’s going to change.

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Review: Four Roads Cross

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Review: Four Roads Cross

The fifth book in Max Gladstone’s Craft Sequence series came out months ago, and I read it immediately, and then put off writing the review so long I felt I had to re-read it to remember everything I wanted to say. And I didn’t mind one bit. See below for a review of Four Roads Cross.

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Star Wars – Rogue Planet

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Star Wars – Rogue Planet

Bonus Star Wars book review! This week’s random pick falls somewhere between Chuck Wendig’s recent book for the new movies, and Timothy Zahn’s no-longer-canon trilogy from the 90’s. Greg Bear released this one in 2000 as a follow-up to The Phantom Menace, a film which I’m sure a lot of people wish wasn’t canon anymore.

Star Wars: Rogue Planet follows Obi-Wan and Anakin as they travel to the mysterious planet of Zonama Sekot, rumored source of ships which may be the fastest in the galaxy, and which also may be alive.

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Review: Star Wars Aftermath – Life Debt

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Review: Star Wars Aftermath – Life Debt

The journey to The Force Awakens continues in the second book of Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath trilogy.

The scrappy band of misfits, bounty hunters, and former soldiers introduced in the first book has been successfully (for the most part) tracking down high-ranking Imperial officers and dragging them back to the New Republic.

Far from being wiped out, the remnants of the Empire are stubbornly holding on to the planets they control and gathering their forces for another attack against the New Republic. But while some Imperial officers truly believe that having the Empire in charge would be better for the galaxy (certainly better than the chaos that’s going to result from the New Republic’s idealistic half-measures), others are working behind the scenes to return to the days of secret police, puppet governments, and an Emperor like Palpatine. Only much worse.

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Review: Dark Force Rising

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Review: Dark Force Rising

Timothy Zahn’s  Star Wars: The Thrawn Trilogy books may not be canon anymore, but they still hold a special place in the hearts of folks like me who remember what it was like to wait for almost a decade to find out what happened after Return of the Jedi. I reviewed the first book of the trilogy last year (link!), so it only makes sense to review the second one while we wait for Star Wars: Rogue One to be released.

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Review: Gilded Cage

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Review: Gilded Cage

                   “Have a quick ten years.”

The debut novel by author Vic James is set in modern day England, where magic is real. Forget about any kind of Harry Potter comparisons though, because in this England the magic users are the nobility, and everyone else is required by law to spend ten years as a slave. Ten years serving those society calls the Equals, with no rights and no control over your own life. It’s up to you to choose when to complete those ten years, but just remember: Do your slavedays too old, you’ll never get through them. Do your slavedays too young, you’ll never get over them.

Luke Hadley’s older sister Abi has a plan for the entire family to serve their ten years fairly comfortably on the luxurious Kyneston estate. Something goes wrong on the first day though, and Luke is instead sent to the dreary factory town Millmoor. The rest of his family will still work for the Jardines, and they’ll have to try to survive the political intrigues, ancient secrets, and magical abuses that surround the most powerful (and power-hungry) family in the country.

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Review: Agatha H and the Voice of the Castle

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Review: Agatha H and the Voice of the Castle

With the nights getting longer and the weather getting colder, it’s the perfect time to curl up with a little comfort reading. Another helping of Phil and Kaja Foglio’s Girl Genius? Thanks, don’t mind if I do!

In this latest novelization, Agatha H and the Voice of the Castle, Agatha has arrived at the town of Mechanicsburg, and she has a lot to deal with. She has to avoid capture by Baron Wulfenbach, stop the evil disembodied spirit of her mother from taking over her mind, protect her loyal companions (including her possible love-interest Gil, the son of the aforementioned Baron Wulfenbach), claim her inheritance as the long-lost daughter of Bill Heterodyne, and thwart the schemes of an imposter, all while retaking and repairing her family’s ancestral home, Castle Heterodyne.

Also? The castle itself is alive. And insane. Read On

Review: Six Scary Stories

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Review: Six Scary Stories

Stephen King’s last short-story collection came out a year ago. If past behavior predicts future performance then it could be as long as eight years before we get another one.

Before anyone (like me) starts to despair, we’ve got a little something to tide us over while we wait. Part of the promotion for Stephen King’s book The Bazaar of Bad Dreams was a competition where UK authors would submit short horror stories, with King himself choosing the best one. King ended up being so impressed with the finalists that he recommended having all of them published together in one collection. Six Scary Stories is the result.
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Review – The Complete Marvel Cosmos: With Notes by the Guardians of the Galaxy

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Review – The Complete Marvel Cosmos: With Notes by the Guardians of the Galaxy

Have you been wishing you could just get away lately? Take a trip somewhere far away? I mean really far away? You’re in luck; Hidden Universe Travel Guides has released the Complete Marvel Cosmos, a travel guide that gives you tips and tricks for some of the best destinations in the Marvel Universe, from the Savage Land all the way to Svartalfheim. And your copy is extra special, because the Guardians of the Galaxy got ahold of it first and scribbled all kinds of notes in it.

Seriously, the writing in this book is already more interesting than what you’d usually get from a fictional guide book, but the quips and insults the Guardians keep throwing at each other are what makes it brilliant.

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Review – Death’s End

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Review – Death’s End

No banquet was eternal. Everything had an end. Everything.

The final book in Cixin Liu’s Remembrance of Earth’s Past picks up where the second book left off. The Trisolaran army has been stopped, and humanity is now safe. Of course “safe” translates here to “holding off an attack from a technologically superior alien race by keeping one finger on the button of a doomsday device, forever.” I wonder how long humanity can keep that up.

This is it, the culmination of everything that Cixin Liu has been leading up to in the first two books. The Three Body Problem featured an alien civilization and theoretical physics. The Dark Forest involved political machinations and high-tech space battles. Death’s End goes beyond both of them and still manages to be like a fairytale. With physics. And politics. And space battles. And a shockingly high number of casualties. Read On