The Qwillery | category: Mira Grant


The Qwillery

A blog about books and other things speculative

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale

Through next Monday, July 31st, Orbit is celebrating it’s 10th anniversary with $2.99 e-book deals on 10 of its most popular titles. Happy Anniversary, Orbit!

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
by Kim Stanley Robinson
Orbit, May 22, 2012
eBook, 576 pages

Winner of the Nebula Award for Best SF Novel of the Year

The year is 2312. Scientific and technological advances have opened gateways to an extraordinary future. Earth is no longer humanity's only home; new habitats have been created throughout the solar system on moons, planets, and in between. But in this year, 2312, a sequence of events will force humanity to confront its past, its present, and its future.

The first event takes place on Mercury, on the city of Terminator, itself a miracle of engineering on an unprecedented scale. It is an unexpected death, but one that might have been foreseen. For Swan Er Hong, it is an event that will change her life. Swan was once a woman who designed worlds. Now she will be led into a plot to destroy them.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
Ancillary Justice
Imperial Radch 1
by Ann Leckie
Orbit, October 1, 2013
eBook, 432 pages

The only novel ever to win the Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke Awards and the first book in Ann Leckie's New York Times bestselling trilogy.

On a remote, icy planet, the soldier known as Breq is drawing closer to completing her quest.

Once, she was the Justice of Toren - a colossal starship with an artificial intelligence linking thousands of soldiers in the service of the Radch, the empire that conquered the galaxy.

Now, an act of treachery has ripped it all away, leaving her with one fragile human body, unanswered questions, and a burning desire for vengeance.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
Blood of Elves
Witcher 1
by Andrzej Sapkowski
Orbit, May 1, 2009
eBook, 416 pages

The New York Times bestselling series that inspired the international hit video game: The Witcher.

For over a century, humans, dwarves, gnomes, and elves have lived together in relative peace. But times have changed, the uneasy peace is over, and now the races are fighting once again. The only good elf, it seems, is a dead elf.

Geralt of Rivia, the cunning assassin known as The Witcher, has been waiting for the birth of a prophesied child. This child has the power to change the world - for good, or for evil.

As the threat of war hangs over the land and the child is hunted for her extraordinary powers, it will become Geralt's responsibility to protect them all - and the Witcher never accepts defeat.

Blood of Elves is the first full-length Witcher novel, and the perfect follow up if you've read The Last Wish collection.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
Newsflesh 1
by Mira Grant
Orbit, May 1, 2010
eBook, 608 pages

The year was 2014. We had cured cancer. We had beat the common cold. But in doing so we created something new, something terrible that no one could stop. The infection spread, virus blocks taking over bodies and minds with one, unstoppable command: FEED.

Now, twenty years after the Rising, Georgia and Shaun Mason are on the trail of the biggest story of their lives-the dark conspiracy behind the infected. The truth will out, even if it kills them.

FEED is the electrifying and critically acclaimed novel of a world a half-step from our own---a novel of geeks, zombies, politics and social media.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
The Fifth Season
Broken Earth 1
by N. K. Jemisin
Orbit, August 4, 2015
eBook, 512

"Intricate and extraordinary." - New York Times on The Fifth Season (A New York Times Notable Book of 2015)


This is the way the world ends...for the last time.

A season of endings has begun.

It starts with the great red rift across the heart of the world's sole continent, spewing ash that blots out the sun.

It starts with death, with a murdered son and a missing daughter.

It starts with betrayal, and long dormant wounds rising up to fester.

This is the Stillness, a land long familiar with catastrophe, where the power of the earth is wielded as a weapon. And where there is no mercy.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
The Girl With All the Gifts
by M. R. Carey
Orbit, June 10, 2014
eBook, 416 pages

Melanie is a very special girl. Dr Caldwell calls her "our little genius."

Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don't like her. She jokes that she won't bite, but they don't laugh.

The Girl With All the Gifts is a groundbreaking thriller, emotionally charged and gripping from beginning to end.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
Leviathan Wakes
Expanse 1
by James S. A. Corey
Orbit, June 15, 2011
eBook, 592 pages

The first book in the landmark Expanse series, now a major television series from Syfy!

Leviathan Wakes is James S. A. Corey's first novel in the epic, New York Times bestselling series the Expanse, a modern masterwork of science fiction where humanity has colonized the solar system.

Two hundred years after migrating into space, mankind is in turmoil. When a reluctant ship's captain and washed-up detective find themselves involved in the case of a missing girl, what they discover brings our solar system to the brink of civil war, and exposes the greatest conspiracy in human history.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
Red Country
by Joe Abercrombie
Orbit, November 13, 2012
eBook, 480 pages

A New York Times bestseller!

They burned her home.
They stole her brother and sister.
But vengeance is following.

Shy South hoped to bury her bloody past and ride away smiling, but she'll have to sharpen up some bad old ways to get her family back, and she's not a woman to flinch from what needs doing. She sets off in pursuit with only a pair of oxen and her cowardly old step father Lamb for company. But it turns out Lamb's buried a bloody past of his own. And out in the lawless Far Country the past never stays buried.

Their journey will take them across the barren plains to a frontier town gripped by gold fever, through feud, duel and massacre, high into the unmapped mountains to a reckoning with the Ghosts. Even worse, it will force them into an alliance with Nicomo Cosca, infamous soldier of fortune, and his feckless lawyer Temple, two men no one should ever have to trust . . .

RED COUNTRY takes place in the same world as the First Law trilogy, Best Served Cold, and The Heroes. This novel also represents the return of Logen Ninefingers, one of Abercrombie's most beloved characters.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
Parasol Protectorate 1
by Gail Carriger
Orbit, October 1, 2009
eBook, 416 pages

Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations. First, she has no soul. Second, she's a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.

Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire -- and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate.

With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London's high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?

SOULLESS is the first book of the Parasol Protectorate series: a comedy of manners set in Victorian London, full of werewolves, vampires, dirigibles, and tea-drinking.

Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook Sale
The Way of Shadows
Night Angel Trilogy 1
by Brent Weeks
Orbit, October 1, 2008
eBook, 688

From New York Times bestselling author Brent Weeks...

For Durzo Blint, assassination is an art-and he is the city's most accomplished artist.

For Azoth, survival is precarious. Something you never take for granted. As a guild rat, he's grown up in the slums, and learned to judge people quickly - and to take risks. Risks like apprenticing himself to Durzo Blint.

But to be accepted, Azoth must turn his back on his old life and embrace a new identity and name. As Kylar Stern, he must learn to navigate the assassins' world of dangerous politics and strange magics - and cultivate a flair for death.

Melanie's Week in Review - April 16, 2017

Melanie's Week in Review - April 16, 2017

Happy Easter to those who celebrate and to those who don't Happy April 16th! Apologies for missing last week. I was at home in Canada where the internet was as slow as dial-up. I couldn't have posted even if I had enough to tell you about!

Melanie's Week in Review - April 16, 2017
First up is Mira Grant's Final Girls. Esther Hoffman is a woman with a mission..a mission to debunk Dr. Jennifer Webbs invention which uses a combination of virtual reality and scenarios out of horror movie to cure psychological problems. When Esther agrees to take part in one of the scenarios in order to prove Dr. Webb is a quack she doesn't realise that she has made a life or death decision until the virtual horrors become real ones.

Grant does it again. Another great story that had me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. Grant manages to make a big story out of this novella with her well developed characters and atmospheric plot. As you may know I am not the biggest fan of short stories as I always feel a bit let down when they are over so quickly but not so, in the case of Final Girls. Grants takes the reader on a journey, albeit a short one, through Esther's virtual reality life. With the help of Dr. Webb, Esther discovers the value of friendship and her own inner strength despite the horror of what happens to her. This is a difficult book to review as there is a lot I could say but I don't want to drop too many spoilers. What I will say is to prepare yourself for a poignant/sad ending. It took me by surprise and I had to read it twice for it to really sink in. Great short read.

Melanie's Week in Review - April 16, 2017
I decided that I needed some airport suitable reading material and turned to my Amazon recommendations which led me to Moonshadow by Thea Harrison. This is the first in the series of the same name and introduces us to the former police consultant witch, Sophie, and Nikolas, knight of the Dark Court. When Sophie is offered the opportunity to travel to the UK to learn more about her childhood she jumps at the chance. She only just arrives in the country when she unwittingly becomes embroiled in a centuries old war between the Dark and Light Court of the Fae. Barred from his homeland Nikolas would do anything and use anyone to return home and protect those he cares about. When he discovers that Sophie holds the key to returning home he is determined that nothing will stop him from using her to get what he wants. Caught between two sides of an ancient feud Sophie tries to resist her growing attraction to the enigmatic knight of the Dark Court. Can she resist? You will have to read it to find out.

I rather liked this first instalment of Harrison's newest series. I have been reading her Elder Races series and felt that with each passing book the same plot is just re-told with new characters. I wasn't completely sure if this series is following along the Elder Races world as many of the same races are found in this series as with the original. There was just enough different to make it unique and I thought that Sophie was a more well rounded character and a bit more flawed than what I have come to expect from this author. This is the perfect read when you need a tiny bit of PNR or when you are on a long flight/commute. There is just enough happening to keep you interested and the plot isn't that complex that you are going to get lost. Hoping that Harrison avoids the same formula of the Elder Races and I will look forward to finding out what happens next.

That is it for me this week. I hope you had a great week and found your perfect read. Until next week Happy Reading.

Final Girls
Subterranean Press, April 2017
Hardcover and eBook, 112 pages

Melanie's Week in Review - April 16, 2017
What if you could fix the worst parts of yourself by confronting your worst fears?

Dr. Jennifer Webb has invented proprietary virtual reality technology that purports to heal psychological wounds by running clients through scenarios straight out of horror movies and nightmares. In a carefully controlled environment, with a medical cocktail running through their veins, sisters might develop a bond they've been missing their whole lives—while running from the bogeyman through a simulated forest. But…can real change come so easily?

Esther Hoffman doubts it. Esther has spent her entire journalism career debunking pseudoscience, after phony regression therapy ruined her father's life. She's determined to unearth the truth about Dr. Webb's budding company. Dr. Webb's willing to let her, of course, for reasons of her own. What better advertisement could she get than that of a convinced skeptic? But Esther's not the only one curious about how this technology works. Enter real-world threats just as frightening as those created in the lab. Dr. Webb and Esther are at odds, but they may also be each other's only hope of survival.

With her new novella Final Girls, bestselling, award-winning author Mira Grant has conjured a heartstopping, gut-wrenching story filled with as many twists as it is versions of reality. Grant offers a chilling exploration of how surviving horrors might define us all.

Moonshadow 1
Teddy Harrison LLC, December 13, 2016
Trade Paperback and eBook, 498 pages
Review Copy: Reviewer's Own

Melanie's Week in Review - April 16, 2017
From bestselling author Thea Harrison comes the first in an explosive new trilogy set in the Elder Races world….

Her past is a blank, her future uncertain….

Recovering from a shooting, LAPD witch consultant Sophie Ross leaves her job and travels to the U.K. to search for answers about her childhood. When she encounters a Daoine Sidhe knight of the Dark Court, she becomes entangled in an ancient hatred between two arcane forces.

He has given his body and soul to fight for his people….

Barred from his homeland along with his surviving brother knights, Nikolas Sevigny is embroiled in a conflict that threatens everything he holds dear. Only by uniting his people’s resources can they hope to prevail against Isabeau, the deadly Queen of the Light Court. He will do anything and use anyone to return home to Lyonesse.

When Nikolas encounters Sophie, he sees a tool to be used. The insouciant witch might be the key to unlocking every passageway that has been barred to the knights of the Dark Court, even as a fascination for her takes root in what’s left of his soul.

Sophie has no intention of becoming anyone’s pawn, yet the fierce Nikolas is so compelling, she can’t deny the temptation that endangers her guarded heart.

As magic threatens Lyonesse, Queen Isabeau unleashes her merciless Hounds, and Nikolas and Sophie become embroiled in a race for survival. Meanwhile, the passion that ignites between them burns too hot to be denied and quickly turns into obsession.

Thank goodness they both know better than to fall in love…

Melanie's Week in Review - March 29, 2015

Melanie's Week in Review  - March 29, 2015

I'm back! Did you miss me? Apologies for missing last week. I am very ashamed to say that I didn't get through enough books to tell you about. I was slightly better but not much. So what did I read over the last two weeks?

Melanie's Week in Review  - March 29, 2015
I finally got around to reading Symbiont by Mira Grant (Orbit, November 25, 2014). This is the second in the Grant's Parasitology series. The story continues with the world in chaos as the tapeworms that people used to prolong their health and lives are now turning them into zombies. Well not everyone. Sal is one of the few exceptions as a sentient tapeworm living in the body of a girl who died in a car accident. Book 2 focuses on Sal's struggle with coming to terms with who and what she is. She also has to come to terms with her 'cousins' being the cause of the ruination of mankind. This lesson comes at a cost and mostly to herself as Sal finds herself kidnapped not once but twice. How unlucky can 1 sentient tapeworm be? She isn't the only one who is kidnapped, tortured and experimented on. Tansy, who had sacrificed herself to save Sal at the end of book one - Parasite finds herself the subject of Dr Banks to quite a chilling end. Humanity is on the brink of destruction and Sal may be the key to its survival.

I have rather mixed views of Symbiont. It was pretty action packed but at the same time rather dull. I thought the middle part of the book really dragged and I was almost wishing a tapeworm zombie would munch one of the main characters - particularly Sal. The Hubinator did not like this book at all but I thought it was 'ok'. My problem with this book in particular was Sal herself. I realise that she trying to come to terms with what she was but boy, she was dull and an uber wimp. Even though I didn't really like Sal, I thought the parts where Sal ponders her humanity were compelling.

Melanie's Week in Review  - March 29, 2015I was shamelessly looking through my Amazon recommendations and came across Forbidden Forest which was book 1 of the Legends of Regia by Tenaya Jayne (Cold Fire Publishing, December 5, 2013).  I had high hopes for this book as I was very sensible and read the sample first I thought the story of Forbidden Forest is the story of the crossbreed elf/shifter Forest who has been bonded against her will to an evil vampire could be interesting. Forest, who had been living on Earth is summoned back to her home of Regia to escort the blind vampire prince across a forest. Needless to say they are destined to be soulmates but Forest isn't sure she can trust another vampire with her life let alone her heart.

When I was reading this book I thought it had been written for the younger urban fantasy fan as despite the events that led to Forest to be slaved bonded  for a more mature reader the characters weren't written as such. Both Forest and Prince Syrus were so busy eating fruit loops and mooning over each other that the convoluted plot was hard to follow or even be interested in. This book was quite a disappointment but it was free so I can't complain too much.

Melanie's Week in Review  - March 29, 2015
The final book I want to tell you about is The Prophecy Con by Patrick Weekes ( 47North, September 23, 2014). This is the second book of the Rogues of the Republic series which finds one of my favourite gangs back together. This instalment follows closely on the heels of The Palace Job where Loch and her gang save the Heaven's Spire and all its inhabitants. In the process she unmasks a madman, finds her long lost sister and hooks up with the dutiful justicar Pyric. In book 2 she has been asked to steal an ancient book from the elves in order to stop a war. There is so many twists and turns, mysteries and intrigues that if I tell you anymore I risk spoiling the whole thing. What I can tell you is that Weekes has created a whole set of characters that you are invested in from page 1. It is very rare for me to like each character equally but Weekes has done it. This series and especially this book are an excellent example of story telling, action and characterisation. If you are a gamer and played either Mass Effect or Dragon Age then you will recognise Weekes' writing style. If not, hurry up and get playing!

Finally, I read and enjoyed The Lemoncholy  Life of Annie Aster by Scott Wilbanks (Sourcebooks Landmark, August 4, 2015). This is a debut novel and Wilbanks has written a cracking book. I will be writing a full review so keep your eye out.

That is enough for me this week and I hope I have made it up to you with this instalment of my WIR. Until next week happy reading.

Melanie's Week in Review - June 29, 2014

Melanie's Week in Review - June 29, 2014

Since my last post I have had the COOLEST experience EVER!!  It wasn't book related but I thought you might be interested anyway.  What did I do and what did I read afterwards?

Melanie's Week in Review - June 29, 2014
Check me out! I flew in a Tiger Moth plane which was piloted by one of the Hubinator's friends. It was a lot of fun and we did loop de loops and barrel rolls. I didn't fly it but could have if I wanted to...or was crazy enough too. Unfortunately, we encountered some major train delays on our way to the air field so it gave me a chance to finish Parasite by Mira Grant. I enjoyed this first instalment of the Parasitology series maybe not as much as I loved the Newflesh series but I did like it. I thought the concept of having a big fat tape worm living inside you keeping you healthy was a good one. This series also features drug companies and health authorities as the ultimate bad guys with the ability to commit murder under the facade of improving society. I did guess what was going to happen but the journey that Grant took the characters on was engaging nonetheless. This is shaping up to be a great series and just needs a little more development of the lead character Sally and it will be close to being excellent.

Melanie's Week in Review - June 29, 2014I needed a bit of light entertainment after Parasite so I turned to my TBR and found a book I bought months ago and had never read - The Case of the Pitcher's Pendant by Tee Morris. This is the second and I believe final book of the Billibub Baddings series. I donated to Morris's Kickstarter campaign for a third book but unfortunately, it didn't meet the right level of funding and was withdrawn. In case you don't know Billi is a dwarf detective and I don't mean just a small man....he is an actual dwarf who ended up in our world during a battle and uses his 'otherworldly' skills to start his own detective agency. I will admit I don't really remember what year The Case of the Singing Sword  (the first book) is set but book 2 starts after the stock market crash in 1929 and Billi's finances take a plummet along with stock market. He finds that his livelihood relies on his acting abilities rather than his detecting skills but he jumps at the chance when offered a case that involves one of his favourite past times - baseball. The new team in town look too good to be true and Billi sniffs out not just trouble but black magic. Billi needs to hit the detective's version of a home run before anyone else dies.

I didn't think book 2 was quite as amusing at book 1 but it was still a good murder mystery. Billi is a great character who has learn to make the most of his new life and uses his diminutive size to his advantage. Al Capone, baseball and a dwarf with lots of moxy....The Case of the Pitchers Pendant has it all.

Melanie's Week in Review - June 29, 2014
I am determined to tidy up by TBR and to looked for another book I have had for awhile. I came across He Said, Sidhe Said by Tanya Huff. Normally, I don't like short stories but when it comes to Tanya Huff I was willing to risk it. I really enjoyed this book especially the stories about the Brownies entitled Tuesday Evenings, Six Thirty to Seven - hilarious. Each story is prefaced with a paragraph or two from Huff explaining why she wrote the story and each one is very different. Even if you aren't a fan of short stories this book has a lot to offer.

I am ending my weekend by starting Digital Wolf by Jon Rosenberg and will tell you all about it next week. Until then Happy Reading.

Melanie's Week in Review - June 22, 2014

Melanie's Week in Review - June 22, 2014

I have better reading news for you this time. I didn't like admitting last week that I had only finished one book.  This however, has benefited me this week as the two books I had started last week plus the new ones I started and finished this week makes me sound like a Reading Olympian. So what did I read?

Melanie's Week in Review - June 22, 2014
I finished The Golem and the Djinni by Helene Wecker. I LOVED this book. It was a beautiful book to read with the perfect balance of character and plot development. This was the story of love and friendship where a golem without a master and an enslaved djinni find their way in their respective communities of New York in the late 1800's. It was not just a story of their lives but it also discussed the societal and religious aspects of both the Jewish and Muslim communities where both characters found themselves. This was one of the few books I have read that didn't try to ram religion down my throat and I was really intrigued by what I learned about both cultures and religions. Wecker created a lovely story of both loneliness and longing. I loved everything from the first first word to the very last one. This is a definite must read so if you haven't bought it then make haste and buy it asap! Note: In the US the title is The Golem and the Jinni.

Melanie's Week in Review - June 22, 2014
I also finished The Singer by Elizabeth Hunter. This was the second instalment of the Irin Chronicles. I have mixed feelings about this series. I don't normally like books about angels and they really have to have something special in order for me to want to read more than one of them. This series has been fairly predictable so far but for some reason I want to keep reading it. I guessed almost every plot twist well before it happened. The hero and heroine don't really shine in this second book but I do think that their love story has an interesting twist...twisted enough for me to want to continue to book three. I can't say too much without giving it all away.

Once I finished this I turned to an eArc that I had forgotten about -The Buried Life by Carrie Patel. This is a debut novel and I am planning to write a full review.

Melanie's Week in Review - June 22, 2014I then switched genre to another book on my TBR - Bad Blood by Chuck Wendig. This is a novella in the Double Dead series.This was NOT a book for a mid week commute. It came across just a bit ...too much, almost too crass. I didn't enjoy it as much as Double Dead. This is definitely a series where you need a time and place to read it. It was gory with a capital 'G' and very unsettling. Wendig is one of the few authors that I like their irreverence and love of gore and swearing but it felt forced in this story.

Melanie's Week in Review - June 22, 2014Onwards and upwards in the unsettling stakes and I turned to Mira Grant with Parasite (Parisitology 1). I am partway through this novel and I can see why Grant has been nominated for a Hugo. It's almost like she has a brain the size of an asteroid in order to think up such a well constructed plot. Whole sections make you feel like you are reading someone's PhD thesis instead of fiction (at least I hope it is fiction!). I don't want to say too much until I am finished so check in next week to see what I thought.

Well ladies and gentleman that is it for me. I am looking forward to telling you what I have been up to on the reading front next week. I feel quite chuffed with what I accomplished this past week even though that was at the expense of my WIR last week. I hope you find something you read that you love as I did with Wecker's tale of friendship.  Let me know what you read. Until next week Happy Reading!

Press Release - Mira Grant to Complete "Parasitology" Series and Return to "Newsflesh" Series in New Novels and Novellas from Orbit

Press Release - Mira Grant to Complete
 PRESS RELEASE - May 27, 2014

Mira Grant to Complete "Parasitology" Series and Return to "Newsflesh" Series in New Novels and Novellas from Orbit

Orbit announced today the acquisition of two new novels and four original novellas from multiple Hugo Award-nominated author Mira Grant. One of the novels will be a third book in the "Parasitology" series, following the Hugo Award-nominated Parasite and Symbiont, and will conclude the trilogy, while the second novel and all four novellas will be set in the world of the "Newsflesh" series.

Mira Grant is a pseudonym of Seanan McGuire, winner of the 2010 John W. Campbell Award for best new writer. Orbit published the first book under the Grant pseudonym, Feed, in 2010, and the following year it became her first Hugo Award-nominated novel. The sequels, Deadline and Blackout, were also nominated for the award. McGuire has also received a shared Hugo Award for Best Fancast for her work on the SF Squeecast.

Parasite is a finalist for the 2014 Hugo Award, the fourth Best Novel nomination for the Mira Grant name. Grant's science fiction writing has been praised as "Horrifying, riveting, and a bit too plausible" (Library Journal, starred review of Parasite) and "exceptionally creepy" (Fort Worth Star-Telegram on Parasite).

Editor Will Hinton said, "It's a dream to work with an author like Seanan and it's thrilling to have more Mira Grant books to look forward to. I know her readers will be as excited as I am to return to the "Parasitology" trilogy and the beloved "Newsflesh" series, and explore entirely new territory in a standalone novel."

Symbiont, book two in the "Parasitology" series, will be published in Fall 2014. The "Parasitology" series is set in a near-future world where parasites have nearly eliminated human disease, but dependence on them may prove to be disastrous.

Seanan McGuire said of the deal, "I am overjoyed to be able to continue to write in the Parasite universe, and more, I am so, so excited to return to the world of Kellis-Amberlee, the Rising, and my unique approach to future journalism. I hope that everyone else will be as excited as I am to go back there, and I promise I have some thrilling surprises in store for you. As for that stand-alone third novel, well... You'll have to wait and see what that's going to be about. I can tell you one thing for sure: it's going to be an adventure."

The newly-acquired book three in the "Parasitology" series is currently scheduled for Fall 2015, while the first two "Newsflesh" novellas are slated for release in Summer 2014 and Summer 2015.

About Orbit
Orbit is the science fiction and fantasy imprint at Hachette Book Group.

About Hachette Book Group
Hachette Book Group is a leading trade publisher based in New York and a division of Hachette Livre, the third-largest trade and educational publisher in the world. HBG publishes under the divisions of Little, Brown and Company, Little Brown Books for Young Readers, Grand Central Publishing, Orbit, Hachette Books, Hachette Nashville, and Hachette Audio.

Melanie's Week Review - April 20, 2014

Melanie's Week Review - April 20, 2014

To those who celebrate Happy Easter and to those who don't Happy 20th April! I hope that whatever you are up to you have a good book to hand. I have been lucky to have read a couple of goodies this past week. So what have I read?

Melanie's Week Review - April 20, 2014
I started the week returning to a series I love - The Newsflesh trilogy by Mira Grant. I didn't re-read one of the books but found a novella from the series that I hadn't read - How Green This Land, How Blue This Sea. The novella features Mahir who appears in the series but not prominently until the final book in the series. This story takes place after the final book Blackout and with Mahir taking a trip to Australia to see the rabbit proof fence and the unique way that Australians have dealt with the zombie apocalypse. I love this series and it was one of the few where I liked the secondary characters as well as the main ones, including Mahir. I did think however, that once you finish a series it should stay that way.  I liked the story but the impact is gone as in my mind the series has finished. I think I will avoid reading the other two novellas I haven't read yet.

Melanie's Week Review - April 20, 2014I then set my sights on reading a book I got from NetGalley  - Morningside Fall by Jay Posey. I read and reviewed book 1 of the series Three last summer which was Posey's debut novel. I thought Three was pretty good, especially as a debut but I didn't enjoy Morningside Fall. Posey made a risky decision to turn an 8 year old boy, Wren into the story's hero and main character and it was a risk that didn't pan out in my view. Wren fluctuated between clinging to his mother, as you would expect a child of that age to act like and talking/acting like a very articulate adult. I have yet to find an 8 year old that uses inner dialogue that they are 'appalled by their own weakness'. Young children don't think that way, act that way or speak that way. It really diminished the power of the story but having such a young character as the focal point and main protagonist. The story also dragged as it was almost all inner and verbal dialogue. There was a lot of action but it was almost all conveyed verbally rather than Posey describing events. This makes for a tedious read. Posey has a great post apocalyptic world and interesting characters in the Weir who sound part zombie/part robot but so many of the other characters are really one dimensional and stereotypical. I really struggled to finish this book and spent as much time looking at the fantastic front cover as I did wishing it would end already.

I rounded out the week reading an ARC I received from Qwill - Turning Tides by Mia Marshall. I read and reviewed the first two books of series last August Broken Elements and Shifting Elements and was super excited to have a crack at reading the next book. I will be writing a full review of this book so look out for this in May.

Melanie's Week Review - April 20, 2014That is it for me for now as I am off to read something that isn't fantasy or science fiction! I am going to read my new recipe book - Leon which is actually the name of a coffee shop type bistro which does delicious food.  I am looking for something that will counter balance all the chocolate I plan on eating this weekend. If I don't slip into a sugar coma I will look forward to clearing off more books from my TBR. Until next week Happy Reading.

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books

As I mentioned in the prior post about BEA (here), I only picked up a few books that I am really interested in reading. Not all of them are Speculative Fiction because I do read other genres. Most of the novels have not yet been published. I've taken photos of the ARCs/novels, but also include the cover image so you can see what they really look like. Without further ado, the books:

The Debuts
(3 of the 5 books I absolutely had to have!)
Pierce Brown, V.E. Schwab and Samantha Shannon
BookExpo America 2013 - The Books

Red Rising
AuthorPierce Brown
Publisher:  Del Rey, February 18, 2014
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages
Price:  $25.00 (print)
ISBN:  9780345539786 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
Pierce Brown's relentlessly entertaining debut channels the readability and excitement of Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games and the best of Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game.

Red Rising is the story of a society in a desolate future, riven by class conflict and shaken by the tremors of an impending revolution. But more than that, it's the story of Darrow-a secret revolutionary who is inspired not only by a longing for social justice, but by lost love. It's only when Darrow's beloved wife is executed by the oppressive government that he begins to question the harsh world he lives in. Recruited by an underground revolutionary cell, Darrow is given a perilous mission: infiltrate the academy that educates this elite-and become one of them.

AuthorV.E. Schwab
Publisher:  Tor Books, September 24, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 368 pages
Price:  $24.99 (print)
ISBN:  9780765335340 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
A masterful, twisted tale of ambition, jealousy, betrayal, and superpowers, set in a near-future world

Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong.

Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?

The Bone Season
AuthorSamantha Shannon
Series:  Scion 1
Publisher:  Bloomsbury USA, August 20, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 480 pages
Price:  $24.00 (print)
ISBN:  9781620401392 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
It is the year 2059. Several major world cities are under the control of a security force called Scion. Paige Mahoney works in the criminal underworld of Scion London, part of a secret cell known as the Seven Seals. The work she does is unusual: scouting for information by breaking into others’ minds. Paige is a dreamwalker, a rare kind of clairvoyant, and in this world, the voyants commit treason simply by breathing.

But when Paige is captured and arrested, she encounters a power more sinister even than Scion. The voyant prison is a separate city—Oxford, erased from the map two centuries ago and now controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. These creatures, the Rephaim, value the voyants highly—as soldiers in their army.

Paige is assigned to a Rephaite keeper, Warden, who will be in charge of her care and training. He is her master. Her natural enemy. But if she wants to regain her freedom, Paige will have to learn something of his mind and his own mysterious motives.

The Bone Season introduces a compelling heroine—a young woman learning to harness her powers in a world where everything has been taken from her. It also introduces an extraordinary young writer, with huge ambition and a teeming imagination. Samantha Shannon has created a bold new reality in this riveting debut.

Mira Grant and Edward Lazellari
(The other 2 of the 5 books I had to have!)
BookExpo America 2013 - The Books

AuthorMira Grant
Series:  Parisitology 1
Publisher:  Orbit, October 29, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 512 pages
Price:  $20.00 (print)
ISBN:  9780316218955 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
From New York Times bestselling author Mira Grant, a high-concept near-future thriller.

A decade in the future, humanity thrives in the absence of sickness and disease.

We owe our good health to a humble parasite - a genetically engineered tapeworm developed by the pioneering SymboGen Corporation. When implanted, the Intestinal Bodyguard worm protects us from illness, boosts our immune system - even secretes designer drugs. It's been successful beyond the scientists' wildest dreams. Now, years on, almost every human being has a SymboGen tapeworm living within them.

But these parasites are getting restless. They want their own lives . . . and will do anything to get them.

The Lost Prince
AuthorEdward Lazellari
Series:  Guardians of Aandor 2
Publisher:  Tor Books, August 20, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 528 pages
Price:  $27.99 (print)
ISBN:  9780765327888 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
Edward Lazellari brings you The Lost Prince, and the race to find the missing prince is on . . .

In Lazellari’s debut fantasy, Awakenings, New York City cop Cal MacDonnell and photographer Seth Raincrest found themselves stalked by otherworldly beings intent on killing them. The two had to accept the aid of a mysterious woman to unlock their hidden pasts, and what they discovered changed their lives.

Everything they knew about their lives was an illusion. They had in fact travelled to our dimension from the medieval reality of Aandor to hide their infant prince from assassins, but upon arriving, a freak mishap wiped their memories. Cal, Seth, and the rest of their party were incapacitated, and the infant prince was lost.

Thirteen years later, that prince, Daniel Hauer, is unaware of his origins--or that he has become the prize in a race between two powerful opposing factions. Cal and Seth’s group want to keep Daniel safe. The other wants Daniel dead—by any means necessary.

From the streets of New York City to the back roads of rural North Carolina, the search for the prince sets powerful forces against each other in a do-or-die battle for the rule of the kingdom of Aandor.

Against a backdrop of murder, magic, and mayhem on the streets of New York City, victory goes to the swiftest and the truest of hearts.

Karen Heuler, Jon McGoran and A.D. Robertson
(Books that caught my eye, and then had to have!)
BookExpo America 2013 - The Books

The Made-Up Man
AuthorKaren Heuler
Publisher:  Livingston Press, November 30, 2011
Format:  Trade Paperback and eBook, 226 pages
Price:  $21.00 (print)
ISBN:  9781604890815 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
Self-pity will only get you so far. When Alyson Salky finds that her lover is having an affair with her best friend--and he takes the dog with him when he moves out--and a man with worse credentials is hired over her at work, it’s time to make some major life decisions. She keeps running into the neighborhood fortune teller, Madame Hope, who promises she can make Alyson’s wishes come true—any wish, so why not a big wish? As far as Alyson can determine, the problem with her life is that she’s getting all the crap that women get, and none of the free passes that men get. It’s time to switch—it’s time to see what life is like as a man—and while Madame Hope can get that done for her (in exchange for her soul), nothing really goes as planned. The devil, it turns out, has a sense of humor. But who will have the last laugh?

AuthorJon McGoran
Publisher:  Forge Books, July 9, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 384 pages
Price:  $24.99 (print)
ISBN:  9780765334701 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
When Philadelphia narcotics detective Doyle Carrick loses his mother and step-father within weeks of each other, he gains a twenty-day suspension for unprofessional behavior and instructions to lay low at the unfamiliar house he’s inherited in rural Pennsylvania.

Feeling restless and out of place, Doyle is surprised to find himself falling for his new neighbor, Nola Watkins, who’s under pressure to sell her organic farm to a large and mysterious development company. He’s more surprised to see high-powered drug dealers driving the small-town roads—dealers his bosses don’t want to hear about.

But when the drug bust Doyle’s been pushing for goes bad and the threats against Nola turn violent, Doyle begins to discover that what’s growing in the farmland around Philadelphia is much deadlier than anything he could have imagined . . .

Quick, clever, and terrifying, Jon McGoran’s Drift is a commercial thriller in the tradition of Nelson DeMille’s Plum Island.

Captive: The Forbidden Side of Nightshade
AuthorA. D. Robertson (Andrea Cremer)
Publisher:  Dutton Adult, October 22, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 320 pages
Price:  $25.95 (print)
ISBN:  9780525954118 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
The first adult novel set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Nightshade series, Captive delivers a steamy, forbidden romance between sworn enemies drawn together by an irrepressible desire.

Twenty-five-year-old Tristan Doran enjoys a life of incredible power and privilege. As a direct descendant of the Keepers—witches who have embraced dark magic—he defers to no one but his overlord, Lord Bosque Mar. For most of his life, Tristan has been kept
out of the centuries-old Witches War, his bloodline too valuable to risk in battle.

But when a beautiful, young human Searcher named Sarah is captured and made a prisoner in his Irish castle, Tristan’s infatuation with her flings him headlong into the fray. Captive and captor, unable to contain their longing, embark on a passionate, forbidden romance together—only to learn that their love is at the heart of a prophecy predicting the downfall of the Keepers’ ages-old reign.

Captive explores the darker side of the richly imagined Nightshade universe, a fantasy world of powerful dark witches, shape-shifting wolf warriors, and fascinating history. The first of three erotic novels, Captive delves deeply into the fiery, illicit romance of two young lovers whose very desires invite their doom.

Jon Land, Peter Mattei, and Lisa Unger
(More unexpected treats!)
BookExpo America 2013 - The Books

Strong Rain Falling
AuthorJon Land
Series:  Caitlin Strong 5
Publisher:  Forge Books, August 13, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 450 pages
Price:  $25.99 (print)
ISBN:  9780765331502 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
Mexico, 1919: The birth of the Mexican drug trade begins with opium being smuggled across the U.S. border, igniting an all-out battle with American law enforcement in general and the Texas Rangers in particular.

The Present: Fifth Generation Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong and her lover Cort Wesley Masters both survive terrifying gun battles. But this time, it turns out, the actual targets were not them, but Masters’ teenage sons.

That sets Caitlin and Cort Wesley off on a trail winding through the past and present with nothing less than the future of the United States hanging in the balance. Along the way they will confront terrible truths dating all the way back to the Mexican Revolution and the dogged battle Caitlin’s own grandfather and great-grandfather fought against the first generation of Mexican drug dealers.

At the heart of the storm soon to sweep away America as we know it, lies a mastermind whose abundant power is equaled only by her thirst for vengeance. Ana Callas Guajardo, the last surviving member of the family that founded the Mexican drug trade, has dedicated all of her vast resources to a plot aimed at the U.S.’s technological heart.

This time out, sabotage proves to be as deadly a weapon as bombs in a battle Caitlin must win in cyberspace as well. Her only chance to prevail is to short-circuit a complex plan based as much on microchips as bullets. Because there’s a strong rain coming and only Caitlin and Cort Wesley can stop the fall before it’s too late.

The Deep Whatsis
Author:  Peter Mattei
Publisher:  Other Press, July 23, 2013
Format:  Trade Paperback and eBook, 256 pages
Price:  $15.95 (print)
ISBN:  978-1-59051-638-6 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
The Deep Whatsis follows a brilliant antihero staggering into madness as he navigates among Brooklyn hipsters, advertising tyrants, corporate hypocrisy, and the ghosts of his past.

Meet Eric Nye: player, philosopher, drunk, sociopath. A ruthless young Chief Idea Officer at a New York City ad agency, Eric downsizes his department, guzzles only the finest Sancerre, pops pills, and chases women. Then one day he meets Intern, whose name he can’t remember. Will she be the cause of his downfall, or his unlikely awakening?

A gripping and hilarious satire of the inherent absurdity of advertising and the flippant cruelty of corporate behavior, The Deep Whatsis shows the devastating effects of a world where civility and respect have been fired.

In the Blood
AuthorLisa Unger
Publisher:  Touchstone, January 7, 2014
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages
Price:  $25.99 (print)
ISBN:  9781451691177 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
In the Blood is the Lisa Unger novel we've all been waiting for—and a return to the dark psychological suspense that made Beautiful Lies a bestseller around the world.

Lana Granger lives a life of lies. She has told so many lies about where she comes from and who she is that the truth is like a cloudy nightmare she can’t quite recall. About to graduate from college and with her trust fund almost tapped out, she takes a job babysitting a troubled boy named Luke. Expelled from schools all over the country, the manipulative young Luke is accustomed to controlling the people in his life. But, in Lana, he may have met his match. Or has Lana met hers?

When Lana’s closest friend, Beck, mysteriously disappears, Lana resumes her lying ways—to friends, to the police, to herself. The police have a lot of questions for Lana when the story about her whereabouts the night Beck disappeared doesn’t jibe with eyewitness accounts. Lana will do anything to hide the truth, but it might not be enough to keep her ominous secrets buried: someone else knows about Lana’s lies. And he’s dying to tell.

Lisa Unger's writing has been hailed as “sensational” (Publishers Weekly) and “sophisticated” (New York Daily News), with “gripping narrative and evocative, muscular prose” (Associated Press). Masterfully suspenseful, finely crafted, and written with a no-holds-barred raw power, In the Blood is Unger at her best.

Chuck Wendig and John Hornor Jacobs
(Okay, I had to have these also. Adore the writing of both authors!)
BookExpo America 2013 - The Books

Under the Empyrean Sky
AuthorChuck Wendig
Series:  The Heartland Trilogy 1
Publisher:  Skyscape, July 30, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and Kindle eBook
Price:  $17.99 (print)
ISBN:  9781477817209 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
Corn is king in the Heartland, and Cael McAvoy has had enough of it. It’s the only crop the Empyrean government allows the people of the Heartland to grow — and the genetically modified strain is so aggressive that it takes everything the Heartlanders have just to control it. As captain of the Big Sky Scavengers, Cael and his crew sail their rickety ship over the corn day after day, scavenging for valuables, trying to earn much-needed ace notes for their families. But Cael’s tired of surviving life on the ground while the Empyrean elite drift by above in their extravagant sky flotillas. He’s sick of the mayor’s son besting Cael’s crew in the scavenging game. And he’s worried about losing Gwennie — his first mate and the love of his life — forever when their government-chosen spouses are revealed. But most of all, Cael is angry — angry that their lot in life will never get better and that his father doesn’t seem upset about any of it. Cael’s ready to make his own luck . . . even if it means bringing down the wrath of the Empyrean elite and changing life in the Heartland forever.

The Twelve Fingered Boy
AuthorJohn Hornor Jacobs
Series:  The Twelve-Fingered Boy Trilogy 1
Publisher:  Carolrhoda Lab, February 1, 2013
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 280 pages
Price:  $17.95 (print)
ISBN:  9780761390077 (print)

BookExpo America 2013 - The Books
Fifteen-year-old Shreve Cannon doesn't mind juvie. He's got a good business dealing contraband candy, and three meals a day are more than his drunk mother managed to provide. In juvie, the rules never change and everyone is the same. In juvie, Shreve has life figured out. Then the new fish shows up.

Jack's a quiet kid. Small. Cries himself to sleep too. He's no standard-issue titty-baby, though. There's his hands—more specifically his fingers, all twelve of 'em. And when he gets angry, something weird happens. The air wavers. You feel a slight pressure in your chest. And then…well, best take cover.

Jack isn't the only new face in juvie. There's Mr. Quincrux. Quincrux has an unusual interest in Jack and Shreve, and it quickly becomes clear that innocent bystanders aren't going to get in his way. So Jack and Shreve bust out.

On the lam, they quickly discover that Jack has abilities—hell, superpowers—that might just give them a fighting chance against Quincrux, if they can stay alive long enough to figure them out.

I'm excited to dive into reading these novels!

Winners x 5 - March 24, 2012

and the winners are....

1) Discount Armageddon (InCryptid 1) and October Daye 1 - 5 by Seanan McGuire and Feed (Newsflesh Trilogy 1) and Deadline (Newsflesh Trilogy 2) by Mira Grant.

Winners x 5 - March 24, 2012

2) Discount Armageddon (InCryptid 1) by Seanan McGuire

3) Discount Armageddon (InCryptid 1) by Seanan McGuire

Ended March 17, 2012 - See the post here

I was able to obtain signed copies of Discount Armageddon for the 3 winners!

Question:  Who are some of your favorite Urban Fantasy novelists or novels?

1) Paul Weimer who said...

Who are some of your favorite Urban Fantasy novelists or novels?

I'm not a huge fan of Urban Fantasy, but the two authors I do follow are Laura Anne Gilman and her Cosa Nostradamus novels, and Jim Butcher. I've met precious few UF fans who don't like Jim Butcher, and many others besides...

2) Sullivan McPig who said...

You're doing it again: making me chose!!! Bad Qwill! ;-)
Patricia Briggs, Laura Bickle, Jess Haines, Carolyn Crane and many more!

3)  BookAttict who said...

Wow! I read mostly UF & Fantasy, so my "UF Faves" list is pretty long, but topping the list....
Iron Druid Series - Kevin Hearne
Persephone Alcmedi Series - Linda Robertson
Conner Grey Series - Mark Del Franco
House of Comarre - Kristen Painter
Alex Craft - Kalayna Price
Kara Gillian - Diana Rowland
Chronicles of Elantra - Michelle Sagara (although it's more fantasy than UF)
Kate Daniels - Illona Andrews
Elemental Assassin - Jennifer Estep

Winners x 5 - March 24, 2012

Choice of signed copy of one of Adrian Phoenix's novels - A Rush of Wings, In the Blood, Beneath the Skin, Etched in Bone, Black Dust Mambo, OR Black Heart Loa - Ended March 19, 2012 - Read the interview here.

Winners x 5 - March 24, 2012

Question:  What book or books did you fall in love with in when you were a teen?

Denise Z who said...

Thank you for sharing with us today, I really enjoyed the spotlight. I love the Black Dust Mambo and Black Heart Loa series and would love to dive into the others as well. As a teen I pretty much had a pleasure reading hiatus due to the amount of mandatory reading in my studies, but in my elementary years I was a reading loving the Boxcar Kids and then as an adult started up again with Johanna Lindsay and historical genre. Now I am a pretty eclectic reader with a primary interest in the urban fantasy series! My fingers are crossed here and I thank you for the awesome giveaway opportunity. I absolutely love Adrian Phoenix's writing style!


amanda who said...

Thanks for taking the time to do this. It is fun to read about the book series and hear about what books got people hooked on reading!! As a teen I only read what I had to. I did enjoy Great Expectations, so I suppose that was the 1st book that didn't cause me physical pain to finish. Ha ha!! I didn't actually fall head over heels for books until my 30's. Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse books were the ones that won me over to hot and hilarious paranormal books. I've lived happily ever after... ;)

Winners x 5 - March 24, 2012

Of Blood and Honey (The Fey and the Fallen 1) by Stina Leicht - Ended March 23, 2012 - Read the interview here.

Winners x 5 - March 24, 2012

Question:  What are some of your favorite books that feature the Fey?

Lesley D who said...

War for the Oaks by Emma Bull is a classic for me, and I also love Seanan McGuire's Toby Daye series. Thanks for the giveaway; I can't wait to read this one!

Winners x 5 - March 24, 2012

The winners have been notified and have until March 31, 2012 at 11:59PM US Eastern Time to respond or The Qwillery will very randomly choose new winners.

Thank you!
Orbit 10th Anniversary eBook SaleMelanie's Week in Review - April 16, 2017Melanie's Week in Review  - March 29, 2015Melanie's Week in Review - June 29, 2014Melanie's Week in Review - June 22, 2014Press Release - Mira Grant to Complete "Parasitology" Series and Return to "Newsflesh" Series in New Novels and Novellas from OrbitMelanie's Week Review - April 20, 2014BookExpo America 2013 - The BooksWinners x 5 - March 24, 2012

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