Mason Stark is a cadet on the USS Egypt. He and several other cadets are riding along as part of their training. Suddenly the Tremists attack the ship. Earth and the Tremists have been at war for years, fighting over the only other inhabitable planet in the galaxy. The crew of the Egypt is taken hostage and Mason and the other cadets must liberate the ship. The Tremists were after a giant cross gate that can transport entire planets. They steal Earth and are about to steal the other planet. Mason and the rest of the cadets must stop them and find a way to save the human race.
This was non-stop action adventure in space. Mason is your take charge kind of kid. Not always right, but has good training to help him out in stressful situations. He is surrounded by bright young things who are also good soldiers. I loved the interactions of these kids. I especially enjoyed Merrin and her backstory and friendship with Mason. I believe this is the start of a series and the end definitely justifies this. I will be ordering this book for my library.
I received a copy of the book from the publishers on Netgalley.
I am quickly becoming addicted to this series and really wish book three was out already! Thank goodness it is just a trilogy and I only have to wait for one more book for all my questions to be answered. This is truly a gem of a series and a wonderful import.
Sapphire Blue picks up after the events of Ruby Red. Gwen and Gideon have time traveled a couple of times, been set upon by brigands, met the Count, and started a bit of a romance. This book just ramps things up even more. There are many more time traveling trips. Gwen starts to learn more about the conspiracy and the prophecies surrounding the twelve time travelers. The Count becomes even scarier, mainly because he was nice. We definitely don’t know who to trust at all. And the romance between Gwen and Gideon heats up, cools off, heats up, cools off.
I don’t read a lot of time travel books, mainly because I find them a bit confusing. That still holds for this book, but it is just too much fun to matter. Sure Gwen has a conversation with the Count about a meeting he had the day before and she hasn’t had yet. Sure she meets her grandfather one day and then a few days later, but for him it was years. Not confusing at all right? I love how witty and under-appreciated Gwen is. I think underestimating her is going to be the downfall of the society! Probably the best part of the book is the demon ghost and Gwen’s friend Lesley. They steal the show. If there is one negative thing I can say about the book it is that the romance is even more confusing than the time travel. Gwen is starry eyed over Gideon even when he treats her like crap. One minute they are fighting and the next snogging. Neither can seem to make up their minds about the other and it is a lot of back and forth. Frankly, I am not sure why Gwen likes him most of the time. However, romance aside, this is a fabulous series and I truly can’t wait until Emerald Green comes out.
Michael Grant, you have sucked me into your world of the FAYZ for the last time and I leave as bloody and broken as everyone else. This series has been addicting and depressing and amazing. I am sad to see it end, but I devoured every page racing towards the end.
Grant pulls no punches in this last installment (as if he ever as). Life is brutal in the FAYZ. Sure the barrier is clear now, but you still can’t cross over. You can see your parents on the other side eating their doughnuts and Carl’s Jr. even while you are starving. The Darkness is now a little girl named Gaia, but she is just as powerful and evil as ever. Little Pete, the only thing Gaia fears, is a disembodied spirit. And everyone else is just trying to survive and wondering about life after. The endgame is here and no one will walk away unscathed.
This is a brutal and brilliant series. I have loved every minute of it as I have despised the characters and cheered them on. The FAYZ has always been about good versus evil and what you are willing to do to survive. In this book the characters start wondering what will happen when the dome falls? What will the outside world think of them? Will anyone be able to understand just what went on in the FAYZ? Who will be blamed for it? This series was a wild ride and the ending was a double loopty-loop with a steep drop. I may have screamed all the way down but I loved every minute of it.
Zenn Scarlett is an exovet in training on Mars. She works with her uncle Otha in the Cloisters, which is part monastery part animal hospital. Her mother was killed in a freak accident and her father has taken off because he can’t deal. Zenn and her uncle work on alien animals some as large as buildings in the clinic. They are under pressure because the bills are mounting up and the city council is threatening to revoke their lease. Then all kinds of strange “accidents” occur which make the animals look dangers and the staff incompetent. In addition to Zenn and her uncle, Hamish, a human size bug alien also works at the clinic. And local boy Liam has started helping out. Zenn has to figure out who is sabotaging them and make sure they don’t loose their land.
For some reason this book took forever for me to read. It wasn’t bad exactly, it just wasn’t very exciting. For the most part the book is about Zenn working on animals and struggling against her uncle’s restrictions. There is mention of tensions with Earth, ships going missing, and conspiracies galore, but these are not fully explained or developed. This is clearly the start of a series since it ends on a cliffhanger, but I wish more time had been spent on the world building and developing the overall arc of the series instead of describing each and every alien creature in detail. I was fascinated by Zenn’s connection to the animals and the politics between Mars and Earth. Hopefully these things will be developed more in the next book.
I received this book from the publishers on Netgalley.com.
The problem with killer creatures from the sea is that once sharks, octopuses, naughty whales and various cryptozoological meanies have rampaged through the pages of novels, finding fresh species to feature is difficult. Enter author Dave Freedman, and the antagonists of this novel, bloodthirsty rays. As in cousins of Manta and Sting. It seems that Earth’s oceans are being invaded by a virus, GDV-4, and it is triggering all kinds of havoc, including the migration and rapid evolution of a deep-sea ray, the adults of which grow to about a 14-foot wingspan. Wingspan is a well-chosen term, because somewhere about the middle of the book, they are flying through the air like birds, and hunting with teeth the width of forearms. Luckily, there is a team of scientists/adventurers on the path of their migration, attempting to discover the new species, keep their jobs with the millionaire funding their expedition, and survive to tell the tale.
I love beach reads. I’ve read many tales along the lines of this one, and for the most part, I’ve been able to overlook the absurdities, and enjoy the bloody action. Manta rays possibly are my favorite sea creature, as well. Envisioning one madly flapping through the skies is more silly than terrifying, though, and matters aren’t helped much by the writing. Fewer humans and other creatures are killed than the author uses the word literally. At one point, I started counting the number of times, and literally, he used literally three times in the two pages I scanned. After that, it became a game of spot-the-literally, to the point of distraction. In the end, all the chasing came down to a single creature hunting the scientists, and literally, I didn’t care which side won. Recommended for those routinely checking the skies for sea creatures.
At some point in the future some babies are born different. They have different colored skin and abilities. There are blue, pink, green, gold children who can manipulate things, sense things, blend in like camouflage and are great at athletics. These children are known as Malian and they are everywhere. The government has instigated a policy of benign indifference, but people are still afraid and mistrustful of Malians. Amber is a sensitive, gold Malian. She can read the emotions of those around her and believe you it is not a fun ability. She starts a Malian support group at her high school to get the word out about Malians. Her best friend Bree, a regular, and her boyfriend Cam, a camo, join the group. Amber also meets Johnny Marino, a high profile Malian who can persuade people. Amber’s group is all about peaceful coexistence and education, but Johnny has a different agenda. All this is set against the backdrop of high school and all the angst that goes along with it, plus a little extra because of the Malian issue.
This book is told in the format of a scrapbook/diary. As such there is a lot of high school girl drama as Amber waffles between her feelings for Cam and Johnny. But the real story is out these high school students take a stand and become activists for their cause. They learn how to stand up for themselves and not be afraid. They also learn the bad side of activism. I thought Amber and Johnny were a nice contract to each other; both sensitives, both passionate about their cause, but going about it in different ways. Kind of reminded me of the contrast between MLK and the Black Panthers; civil disobedience versus rebellion. I like how Spitzley addressed racism in a different way. She took away the old black versus white argument and made it a regular versus Malian argument. I think she made her point that we are all the same no matter our skin tone; our actions should speak for us not our color.
I received a copy of this book from the publishers on Netgalley.
Gwyneth is a perfectly ordinary girl who just happens to come from a family of time travels who belong to a secret society. Her cousin Charlotte has been groomed from birth to be the time travel of her generation. Imagine everyone’s surprise when it is Gwyneth not Charlotte who travels back in time. She is hopelessly unprepared and has to undergo a crash course in time travel to prepare her for her life ahead. She is introduced to the secret society, the Guardians, who help the time travelers and of course have all kinds of secrets. She must work with her time travel partner Gideon de Villiers, who is definitely keeping secrets from her and may be in love with Charlotte. Gwyneth is the 12th of the line of travelers and the one who will close the circle so that the secret can be revealed. What secret? Well no one is telling or knows. There are mysterious cousins who have disappeared in the past. There is someone trying to kill Gwyneth and Gideon and maybe steal their blood. There are secrets upon secrets upon secrets.
This was a fun start to this trilogy. I really enjoyed this new aspect of time travel where it is all tied to a gene and passed down in families. I am fascinated by the chronograph which helps control where the time travels go. And I love secret societies! I wish more was revealed in this book about all these things, but I am sure the next two books will reveal their secrets. I enjoyed Gwyneth, but I have to admit that her friend Lesley stole the show. A spunky side-kick is always a welcome addition to a cast. I will definitely be reading the rest of this series.
This series never fails to impress and delight. In this volume, Mayor Hundred goes to Rome for a chat with the Pope but forces are at work to turn his visit into an assassination. Can the Great Machine actually be hacked?
This volume isn’t the most exciting of the series, but still gets the job done.
Concludes with an interesting story featuring the author and illustrator, which is always fun to me. Love it when the fourth wall is breached.
Sixeen year-old George Carole, uncommonly gifted at the piano, falls in with a strange troupe — and under the watchful eye of the enigmatic figure of Silenus, George comes to realize that the members of the troupe are more than they appear to be.
This book was very confusing or maybe it was just I’m not use to reading fantasy. It started out interesting following a troupe of vaudeville performers. I skipped a bit of the fantasy part.
Gritty short story collection by some of fantasy’s best authors like Patricia Briggs, Jim Butcher, and Holly Black with urban settings. Dark and atmospheric, great fantasy read.
The two volumes of “Crossovers” are a fascinating and highly enjoyable read for anyone interested in the interactions between various pulp, mystery, adventure, and science fiction characters with each other and real people throughout history. The premise of the book was inspired by SF writer Philip José Farmer’s “Wold Newton” concept which he developed in the 1970s: a “radioactive” meteorite crashed near Wold Newton, England, in 1795 and affected several carriages full of people who were passing by. Their descendants became highly intelligent and powerful heroes (or villains) such as Sherlock Holmes, Professor Moriarty, Dr. Fu Manchu, Doc Savage, Lord Greystoke (Tarzan), and many more. Farmer wrote popular and detailed biographies of Tarzan and Doc Savage in which he explored the family trees of many “Wold Newton Family” characters. Over time, the concept has been expanded and continued by Win Scott Eckert and others to become the “Crossover Universe.” Mr. Eckert has done a fantastic job of compiling references to literary heroes who have met each other (or “crossed over”) and had adventures together, and thus co-exist in the same fictional universe. Volume 1 covers the dawn of time up through 1939, and Volume 2 covers 1940 into the far future. (Mr. Spock himself claimed Sherlock Holmes as an ancestor of his!) There are 2000 entries in this chronology and 300 illustrations. Reading these two books is fun and will send you scurrying to find many of the stories and books that are referenced.
Do you ever cheer for the monster? Wish that you were an evil genius? Think that the mad scientist should win once in a while? Then The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination is the book for you. Full of nefarious plots and slavering Igors, it is a wildly entertaining romp of short stories where the superheros are often just stupid saps and the wicked do not get their just deserts. Muahahahahaha!
Elvie is 16 and pregnant. Since this is 2074, options for pregnant teens include things like low-orbit space ships that are retrofitted as boarding schools for pregnant teenaged girls. Elvie’s father decided she should take that option and Elvie doesn’t really care, so long as she can give birth as quickly and painlessly as possible, give the baby up for adoption and get back to studying for the PSATs. Life on board the Echidna wouldn’t be so terrible if a)Elvie’s arch-nemesis, Britta, wasn’t also on board and b)a troop of laser-gun wielding guys hadn’t taken over the ship. Britta’s your classic mean-girl-cheerleader type and she’s been hating on Elvie since they were kids. To make matters worse, Britta’s baby-daddy is the same as Elvie’s. The guys with the laser guns aren’t terrible, but their ship blows up right after they board and the Echidna begins leaking oxygen at an alarming rate. In the meantime, laser-gun-guys have some revelations for the girls that will change their lives forever. Assuming, you know, they survive this ordeal.
Elvie is a super-fun narrator, she’s about the snarkiest of the snarky and I love her for it. Britta is annoyingly evil as is her pal, Other Cheerleader (so dubbed due to her complete lack of independent personality). Baby-daddy Cole is a *mostly* loveable buffoon that Elvie can’t help but fall for. The plot moves at light-speed and the humor never lets up. There’s some subtly smart stuff going on that just might make the reader rethink how they view personhood. Awesome! I’m very interested to see where this series is headed.
Benny, Nix, Chong and Lilah are still trekking East on their quest to find the jet. They are still really from the loss of Tom at Gameland. They rescue a child from a zombie hord and meet Riot and the Reapers. Riot is trying to lead a group to Sanctuary when they were attacked by the Reapers. The Reapers, led by Saint John and Mother Rose, are trying to finish what the zombie plague began and end humanity. Our group gets separated and danger finds each of them. In addition to the Reapers, they also discover the remnants of humanity. There is hope for them if only they can find Sanctuary.
These books are about so much more than zombies. It is about humanity and what the human race is capable of, both good and evil. I am glad we find out more about what is going on outside of the mountain communities in this book. We learn that there is a form of civilization left who is working on saving what is left of humanity. Whereas some of the previous books were about evil and despair this one is ends with hope (amid all the evil and despair). I can’t wait for the fourth and final book in this series.