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Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff


A Peace Divided
Author:  Tanya Huff
Series:  Peacekeeper 2
Publisher:  DAW, June 6, 2017
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 384 pages
List Price:  US$26.00 (print); US$12.99 (eBook)
ISBN:  9780756411503 (print); 9780756411527 (eBook)

Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
The second book in the action-packed Peacekeeper series, a continuation of Tanya Huff’s military sci-fi Confederation series following Torin Kerr

Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr had been the very model of a Confederation Marine. No one who’d ever served with her could imagine any circumstance that would see her walking away from the Corps.

But that was before Torin learned the truth about the war the Confederation was fighting…before she’d been declared dead and had spent time in a prison that shouldn’t exist…before she’d learned about the “plastic” beings who were really behind the war between the Confederation and the Others. That was when Torin left the military for good.

Yet she couldn’t walk away from preserving and protecting everything the Confederation represented. Instead, ex-Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr drew together an elite corps of friends and allies—some ex-Marines, some civilians with unique skills—and together they prepared to take on covert missions that the Justice Department and the Corps could not—or would not—officially touch. But after their first major mission, it became obvious that covert operations were not going to be enough.

Although the war is over, the fight goes on and the Justice Department finds its regular Wardens unable to deal with violence and the people trained to use it. Ex-Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr has a solution: Strike Teams made up of ex-military personnel, small enough to maneuver quickly, able to work together if necessary. Justice has no choice but to implement her idea and Torin puts her team of independent contractors back into uniform. It isn’t war, it is policing, but it often looks much the same.

When the scientists doing a preliminary archaeological dig on a Class Two planet are taken hostage, Torin’s team is sent to free them. The problem of innocents in the line of fire is further complicated by the fact that the mercenaries holding them are a mix of Confederation and Primacy forces, and are looking for a weapon able to destroy the plastic aliens who’d started and maintained the war.

If Torin weren’t already torn by wanting that weapon in play, she also has to contend with the politics of peace that have added members of the Primacy—former enemies—to her team. Before they confront the mercenaries, Torin will have to sift through shifting loyalties as she discovers that the line between“us” and “them” is anything but straight.



Doreen's Review

I’ve enjoyed Tanya Huff’s novels for years, particularly her fantasy, but her Confederation series, also known as the Valor series, really got me hooked on Sci-Fi military novels. I’m really not into guns or other weapons; I respect and honor those who choose to serve in the military, but I could never really understand their devotion and enthusiasm for their service until I began reading about Torin Kerr.

The Valor novels begin with Valor’s Choice and Torin and her platoon assigned to yet another dangerous mission on behalf of the Confederacy. The Confederacy is made up of the Elder Races, those with the earliest and best technology who organized and invited other races to the Confederacy, and the Younger Races, who are recruited because they still retain the violent tendencies necessary to fight the Galactic War against the Primacy which has raged for centuries. All the Valor novels follow Torin as she evolves in her role as a gunnery sergeant until she discovers a massive secret about the creation of the War that finally leads to peace with the Primacy. Just when it seems that there is no need for entities with her skill set, she is recruited by the Wardens, the peacekeeping hand of the Confederacy, to help enforce laws where the Elder Races even lack the ability to use / understand violence.

A Peace Divided starts after Torin’s first adventure as a Warden in An Ancient Peace, where she and her team discovered that some military groups are searching for ancient weapons developed and then destroyed by one of the first Elder Races. A Peace Divided follows the plot started in that novel and continues.

Rather than describe the plot, I want to focus on some other elements of this novel, particularly the characterization. In this new series, Torin is a military veteran who has had some horrific experiences during her career, leading to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Her charge as a Gunnery Sargent who lead some people to their death weighs on her, physically, as she feels the containers of ashes of the dead on her combat vest. She has finally agreed to see a counselor and come to the realization that the process has helped her and will continue to help her, and as a reader, it is possible to see that change when comparing her decision making in this novel to the decision making in the novels of the other series. More than almost anything, I enjoy watching characters grow and change through the experiences they have between the pages. Tanya Huff does an excellent job on this, not only with Torin, but with the other members of her team.

In addition, the other members of her team are very creatively drawn. Huff has made the military units to include a mixture of alien races, by law, and emphasizes the equality among them. When she initially describes an alien race, she includes a little background about their evolution and history that allows the reader to understand that oddities that make them alien, whether they be body parts or eating choices, or mental perspective.

As military Sci-Fi, the novel has weapons and they are described in detail as well as designed scientifically to consider issues such as firing projectiles within a starship. Lastly the method of travel is described both scientifically as well as mathematically, again making it fit well within the Sci-Fi genre. Most important to me are the battles that make it military. Huff can go from a macro description to a more minute individual view all within a single paragraph and have it flow well. The strategy of the battles often reflect the attitudes of the specific race against which the team is fighting. To me, that’s great writing. The surprises that Huff often adds through Torin are delightful.

Overall, it would be possible to read A Peace Divided on its own, because Huff provides just enough background on the big plot issues and the personalities, without being too repetitive or boring for a long-time reader like myself. However, why deprive yourself of the entire realm of the Confederacy? Starting with Valor’s Choice (Valor 1), you can only win.





Previously

An Ancient Peace
Peacekeeper 1
DAW, October 4, 2016
Mass Market Paperback, 432 pages
Hardcover and eBook, October 6, 2015

Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
The thrilling first installment in the military sci-fi Peacekeeper series continues the adventures of Torin Kerr and her team of marines

Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr had been the very model of a Confederation Marine. But when she learned the truth about the war the Confederation was fighting, she left the military for good.

But Torin couldn’t walk away from preserving and protecting everything the Confederation represented. Instead, she drew together an elite corps of friends and allies to take on covert missions that the Justice Department and the Corps could not—or would not—officially touch. Torin just hoped the one they were about to embark on wouldn’t be the death of them.

Ancient H’san grave goods are showing up on the black market—grave goods from just before the formation of the Confederation, when the H’san gave up war and buried their planet-destroying weapons…as grave goods for the death of war. Someone is searching for these weapons and they’re very close to finding them. As the Elder Races have turned away from war, those searchers can only be members of the Younger Races.

Fortunately, only the Corps Intelligence Service has this information. Unfortunately, they can do nothing about it—bound by laws of full disclosure, their every move is monitored.

Though Torin Kerr and her team are no longer a part of the military, the six of them tackling the H’san defenses and the lethally armed grave robbers are the only chance the Confederation has. The only chance to avoid millions more dead.

But the more Torin learns about the relationship between the Elder Races and the Younger, the more she begins to fear war might be an unavoidable result.





The Valor / Confederation Series

Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
Valor's Choice
Valor 1
DAW, April 1, 2000
eBook, 416 Pages

The first book in Tanya Huff’s action-packed military sci-fi adventure Confederation series

Staff Sergeant Torin Kerr was a battle-hardened professional. So when she and her platoon were yanked from a well-deserved leave for what was supposed to be “easy” duty as the honor guard for a diplomatic mission to the non-Confederation world of the Silsviss, she was ready for anything. Sure, there’d been rumors of the Others—the sworn enemies of the Confederation—being spotted in this sector of space. But there were always rumors. The key thing was to recruit the Silsviss into the Confederation before the Others attacked or claimed these lizardlike warriors for their side. And everything seemed to be going perfectly. Maybe too perfectly….




Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
The Better Part of Valor
Valor 2
DAW, June 5, 2007
eBook, 416 Pages

The second book in Tanya Huff’s action-packed military sci-fi adventure Confederation series

Never tell a two-star general what you really think of him….

That was the mistake Staff Sergeant Torin Kerr made with General Morris. But as a battle-hardened professional, she took pride in doing her job and getting her troops back alive. So after she’d saved the mission to bring the Silviss into the Confederation—instead of losing them and their world to the enemy known only as the Others—she let the general know exactly how she felt.

And Torin’s reward—or punishment—was to be separated from her platoon and sent off on what might well prove an even more perilous assignment. She was commandeered to protect a scientific expedition to a newly discovered and seemingly derelict spaceship of truly epic proportions. And Confederation politics had saddled her with a commanding officer who might prove more of a menace to the mission’s success than anything they encountered.

Only time would tell if the ship was what it appeared to be, or a trap created by the Others—or the work of an as-yet unknown alien race with an agenda that could prove all too hostile to other life forms….




Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
The Heart of Valor
Valor 3
DAW, June 3, 2008
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 432 pages

The third installment in Tanya Huff’s action-packed military sci-fi adventure Confederation series

Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr was a Confederation Marine’s marine. She’d survived more deadly encounters—and kept more of her officers and enlisteds alive—than anyone in the Corps, and she was determined to keep the record intact. But since her last mission, she’d been sidelined into endless briefings and debriefings with no end in sight.

So, of course, she’d jumped at the chance to go to the Crucible—the Marine Corps training planet—as temporary aide to Major Svensson. The major had been reduced to little more than a brain and spinal cord in his last combat, and he and his doctor were anxious to field test his newly re-grown body.

It should have been an easy twenty-day run. After all, Crucible was only set up to simulate battle situations so recruits could be trained safely. But they were barely on-planet when someone started blasting the training scenarios to smithereens.

And suddenly Kerr found herself not only responsible for the major and his doctor, but caught in a desperate fight to keep a platoon of Marine recruits alive until someone discovered what was happening on Crucible….




Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
Valor's Trial
Valor 4
DAW, June 2, 2009
Mass Market and eBook, 416 pages

The fourth book in Tanya Huff’s action-packed military sci-fi adventure Confederation series

After surviving the perils of the Crucible, the Marine Corps planet where a routine training assignment had taken a deadly twist—Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr returned to Ventris Station just in time to link up with her old platoon and head out to a new war zone, an area of space where the enemy known as the Others appeared to be building up its forces for a preemptive strike.

Sent to pull back troops who’d moved up to an indefensible position, Torin was caught in the heaviest fighting just as a devastating air strike reduced the whole area to slag. The Corps concluded that she was dead. But despite irrefutable evidence, neither Torin’s father nor salvager Craig Ryder agreed.

And the truth was that Torin had survived. She woke to discover that she was trapped in a series of underground caves that appeared to be an enemy-run POW camp. But everyone knew the Others never took prisoners—or did they?

Could Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr escape this prison that shouldn’t even exist, taking as many Marines as possible with her? Though she was determined to get herself and her Marines back to the Confederation, Torin had no idea how crucial her attempt could prove, not only to her own well-being, but to the course of the entire war.




Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
The Truth of Valor
Valor 5
DAW, September 6, 2011
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 416 pages

The thrilling final installment in Tanya Huff’s military sci-fi adventure Confederation series

Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr was the very model of a Confederation Marine. She’d survived more deadly encounters than anyone in the Corps. No one who’d ever served with her could imagine her walking away from the Corps. But that was before Torin had learned the truth about the war the Confederation was fighting…before she’d been declared dead and had spent time in a prison that shouldn’t exist….

It was Salvage Operator Craig Ryder who had refused to believe Torin was dead. Craig who found and rescued Torin. And so, when her mission was complete, Torin resigned from the Marines to start a new life with Craig aboard his tiny salvage ship, the Promise.

But civilian life was a lot rougher than Torin had imagined. The salvage operators were losing cargo and lives to pirates. Because salvagers were an independent lot unwilling to turn to the OutSector Wardens for help, no one in authority seemed to take their ever-increasing threat seriously.

Then, on their first real run together, pirates attacked the Promise, kidnapping Craig and leaving Torin to die. But leaving Torin behind to die was never a good strategy. Against all odds, she survived, and certain—despite no evidence to prove her correct—that Craig was still alive, she decided to mount a rescue mission. When Craig’s salvager friends refused to join her, Torin had no choice but to call in the Marines—some very special Marines.

Then she discovered why the pirates had been trying to kidnap salvagers. And suddenly Torin’s mission expanded from saving Craig to stopping the pirates from changing the balance of power in known space….




Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya Huff
A Confederation of Valor
Valor 1 and 2
DAW, February 3, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 576 pages

In Valor’s Choice, Staff Sergeant Torin Kerr and her crew get yanked from a well-deserved shore leave in order to participate in an “easy” mission. They are to act as an honor guard for a diplomatic visit to the world of the Silsviss, reptilian aliens with a strong appreciation for war and conquest. Ideally, the visit will result in an alliance and a new member world for the Confederation. Sure, there’d been rumored sightings of the Others on the planet, sworn enemies of the Confederation, but there are always rumors. Everything seems to be going perfectly. Maybe too perfectly…

In The Better Part of Valor, Torin Kerr’s outspokenness gets her in a load of trouble. After she tells a two-star general what she really thinks of him, she finds herself separated from her platoon and sent off on a perilous assignment. She’s ordered to escort a scientific expedition to an unidentified alien ship abandoned in space — is it a trap set by the Others or simply a derelict? It’s Torin’s job to find out — and to babysit a commanding officer who might prove more of a menace to the mission’s success than anything they encounter.


Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016


Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016


It's a big happy milestone birthday to my sister Lauranne who introduced me to fantasy not so many years ago. I am missing the party and the cake but if I wasn't, you would be missing my post! It was a week of shorts rather than a short week. So what did I read?


Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016
Amazon keeps popping up Grace Draven's short story Wyvern at me whenever I browse for books so I thought it was time I give it a go. In this story Elsbeth makes a brave deal with the wyvern that has been terrorising her community. Elsbeth has offered to entertain the wyvern by playing her fiddle in order to save her grandfather for getting lynched. Elsbeth soon finds herself drawn the large beast that reminds her lost but not forgotten love. What Elsbeth has yet to realise is that the wyvern is none other than Alaric the bard she lost her heart to years before. Can Alaric convince her he is more than the fearsome beast who has put her beloved grandfather in danger?

I thought this short story was OK. I wasn't wowed but I wasn't completely bored either. The song 'The Devil Went Down to Georgia' kept running through my head when I came to the parts where Elsbeth was making the deal with Alaric to play her fiddle to save her grandfather. I thought it was mediocre in comparison to some of Draven's other works.


Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016
Amazon also recommended Bec McMaster's short story The Many Lives of Hadley Monroe. In this tale Hadley actually makes a deal with Death to give her more time with her dying grandmother. She has a month to answer Death's question and in the process of trying to find the answer she comes to realise there is more to Death than a black cloak and a scythe.

This was a very short story indeed. I think it took me no more than a half hour to read. Again, I was a bit disappointed. I am not sure whether it was the super short length of this story that bothered me or the fact that Hadley very quickly started to make 'swoony' eyes at the grim reaper.


Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016
Still on the short story theme and this time from NetGalley I received Shadowed Souls. This is a anthology of short stories by various authors including Jim Butcher, Seanan McGuire, Tanya Huff, and Rob Thurman. The anthology is edited by Jim Butcher and Kerrie L. Hughes. Butcher wrote the foreword and describes how a pack of coyotes are circling his house, waiting in anticipation for his elderly pet dog to come outside. He scares them off in defence of his beloved pet but acknowledges that they aren't evil just predators who are doing what is instinctual. This sets the theme of this anthology - predators who aren't evil but do bad things.

I won't tell you about every story but what I can say that I liked some better than others. Notably, Jim Butcher's which was set in the Harry Dresden world and told from Molly's POV. This was a chilling tale indeed and very good. I also loved Tanya Huff's short from the Vicky Nelson series. I loved that series and it was great to find out what Vicki has been up to since the end of the series. I also thought Rob Thurman's contribution was very tense as was Kristine Kathryn Rusch's. I haven't read anything from Rusch before and I liked her tale of the grief stricken Kaylee. I think I will be checking out more from this author. I didn't feel that all of the shorts lived up to the 'predator' label especially Seanan McGuire's. I have to say that her predator the succubus Elsie wasn't very predatory at all. Overall, I enjoyed this anthology and found a couple of authors I am going to investigate further.


That is it for me this week...short and sweet (tee hee). Until next week Happy Reading!





Wyvern
A Dragon Shifter Novella
Grace Draven, September 5, 2016
eBook, 88 pages

Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016
Eight years earlier the talented fiddler, Elsbeth Weaver, gave up the man she loved to care for her ailing grandfather. Now, she must risk her life to save her grandfather from a lynching by playing for the wyvern terrorizing the countryside. When she comes face-to-face with the beast at the haunted cliffs of Maldoza, she is both frightened and fascinated. Something about the creature reminds her of the bard who once stole her heart, something more than just a shared name.

Alaric has never stopped loving the human woman he left behind in a dusty village almost a decade before. When he meets her again at Maldoza, wearing old dragon armor and playing her fiddle as if her heart would break, he is overjoyed. Elsbeth doesn’t know her erstwhile lover is only an illusion for the wyvern, and Alaric must convince her that the heart of the beast is no less devoted than the heart of the man.

~Second edition. Originally published by Amber Quill Press in 2007~

Note: Some scenes contain graphic descriptions of physical intimacy.





The Many Lives of Hadley Monroe
Lochaber Press, April 4, 2016
eBook, 52 pages

Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016
When the clock stops ticking, and the storm rolls in, Hadley Monroe knows exactly what’s going on. Forty years ago her grandfather made a pact with Death, and now Death has come calling again.

Forced to make her own deal with the reaper, Hadley has only three weeks to answer his question, or he’ll take her grandmother too. The problem is, there’s no way to answer it, and three weeks is not long enough with the reaper who’s beginning to steal her heart…

Warning: This short story has been previously published in the Mammoth Book Of Southern Gothic Romance.





Shadowed Souls
Roc, November 1, 2016
Trade Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

Melanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016
In this dark and gritty collection—featuring short stories from Jim Butcher, Seanan McGuire, Kevin J. Anderson, and Rob Thurman—nothing is as simple as black and white, light and dark, good and evil..

Unfortunately, that’s exactly what makes it so easy to cross the line.


In #1 New York Times bestselling author Jim Butcher’s Cold Case, Molly Carpenter—Harry Dresden’s apprentice-turned-Winter Lady—must collect a tribute from a remote Fae colony and discovers that even if you’re a good girl, sometimes you have to be bad…

New York Times bestselling author Seanan McGuire’s Sleepover finds half-succubus Elsie Harrington kidnapped by a group of desperate teenage boys. Not for anything “weird.” They just need her to rescue a little girl from the boogeyman. No biggie.

In New York Times bestselling Kevin J. Anderson’s Eye of Newt, Zombie P.I. Dan Shamble’s latest client is a panicky lizard missing an eye who thinks someone wants him dead. But the truth is that someone only wants him for a very special dinner…

And New York Times bestselling author Rob Thurman’s infernally heroic Caliban Leandros takes a trip down memory lane as he deals wih some overdue—and nightmarish—vengeance involving some quite nasty Impossible Monsters.

ALSO INCLUDES STORIES BY
Tanya Huff * Kat Richardson * Jim C. Hines * Anton Strout * Lucy A. Snyder * Kristine Kathryn Rusch * Erik Scott de Bie *

Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016


Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016


Welcome to February. While some people find January the toughest month of the year I definitely get the February blues. As I write this it is grey, overcast, windy, and cold outside (although this is England so that could be any day in any month). Lucky for you (and for me) I read a couple of great books that I get to tell you all about.


Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016
US Cover - Ace
First up is Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs which is the 9th in the Mercy Thompson series. In this instalment tensions are running high between the werewolves, the humans and the fae. After saving her city from a rampaging troll Mercy discovers a way a key to help slow down the escalating tensions with the fae - a human child who was kidnapped by the fae centuries ago. Mercy and her mate Adam decide to protect the child regardless what the cost, and the cost turns out to be pretty high. This isn't your average human child as the young boy is fire-touched and could turn their very lives into a pile of ash. Is this boy worth being excised from The Pack? You need to read it to find out.

Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016
UK Cover - Orbit
I have been thinking since about book 6 that Briggs needed to start to wrap this series up as I was getting a tad bored with Mercy getting beaten up every instalment (or worse). The last book she nearly dies after being almost barbecued by a volcano god. But guess what readers?  She barely gets a scratch in Fire Touched! What a relief. This book still had action but more importantly character development. There were actually repercussions from Mercy's actions but this time they weren't physical. All in all a great read. I have also included both covers.  Which one do you prefer?  One is a bit more graphic novel than the other and I don't think Mercy ever wears a denim crop top!


Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016
Book 2 for me was Tanya Huff's Sing the Four Quarters. This book was first published 22 years ago and re-released in digital format last year. I love Tanya Huff and I really enjoyed this first instalment of the Quarters series.

Annice is a bard, not just any bard as she can sing all four quarters. What does this mean?  She can sing to the all four of the kigh (aka elementals)  -wind, water, earth, and fire. When Annice comes back from a Walk no one is more surprised than she that she is pregnant. Normally, this wouldn't be considered treason, but Annice was forbidden to have children by her brother, the new king, when she left the royal family to be trained as a bard. What makes it worse is that the father of her child is found to have committed treason and Annice is determined to clear his name.

If you like high fantasy, amusing characters and a nice mystery then I urge you to try this book. I am not sure however, I will continue with the series as subsequent books are about completely different characters. I liked Annice and the other bards so not sure I want to read about completely other characters, especially when I have a few books on my TBR to get through. Who knows, I may just grab book 2, Fifth Quarter, and try it out.


That is it for me this week. Nice and short, just like February! Enjoy whatever you have on the go and I look forward to sharing with you what I hope are some more great reads.




Fire Touched
Mercy Thompson 9
Ace, March 8, 2016
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages

Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016
Mercy Thompson has been hailed as “a heroine who continues to grow and yet always remains true to herself.”* Now she’s back, and she’ll soon discover that when the fae stalk the human world, it’s the children who suffer…

Tensions between the fae and humans are coming to a head. And when coyote shapeshifter Mercy and her Alpha werewolf mate, Adam, are called upon to stop a rampaging troll, they find themselves with something that could be used to make the fae back down and forestall out-and-out war: a human child stolen long ago by the fae.

Defying the most powerful werewolf in the country, the humans, and the fae, Mercy, Adam, and their pack choose to protect the boy no matter what the cost. But who will protect them from a boy who is fire touched?

*Library Journal




Sing the Four Quarters
Quarters 1
JABberwocky Literary Agency, Inc.
eBook, August 4, 2015
Trade Paperback (Amazon), January 21, 2016

Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016
The Bards of Shkoder hold the country together. They bring the news of the sea to the mountains, news of the mountains to the plains. They give their people, from peasant to king, a song in common.

Annice is a rare talent, able to Sing all four quarters, but her brother, the newly enthroned King Theron, sees her request to study at the Bardic Hall as a betrayal. But Annice renounces her royal blood and swears to remain childless so as not to jeopardize the line of succession.

Ten years later, she’s on the run from the Royal Guards with the Duc of Ohrid, the father of her unborn child, both of them guilty of treason – one of them unjustly accused. To save the Duc’s life, they’ll have to cross the country, manage to keep from strangling each other, and defeat an enemy too damaged for even a Bard’s song to reach.

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 - January 12, 2014



Melanie's Week in Review - January 12, 2014


Hello! I was really hoping I was going to have a whole big pile of books to tell you about this week but despite my good intentions I got through only 2 books (and one short story). I don't know why I did so poorly on the reading front as I had more dedicated commuting time than last week. So what did I read?

Melanie's Week in Review - January 12, 2014
Last week I had already started The Silvered by Tanya Huff and it took me quite a bit longer to read than I was anticipating. I really enjoy Huff's books. She is such a talented writer and can switch easily between fantasy, science fiction and urban fantasy. It's an added bonus that she is also Canadian (hurrah!). I laughed my way through The Keeper's Chronicles, bit my nails at the tenseness of the Confederation series and was totally engrossed by The Blood/Victoria Nelson series. The only series I didn't wholeheartedly get into was the Enchantment Emporium series.  The Silvered is high fantasy and tells the story of the plain and un-talented mage Miriam Maylin who along with Tomas Hagen, from the were pack, leave their homes and loved ones and are hot on the trail of Imperialists who have kidnapped Tomas' sister-in-law and four other mages. It's a journey fraught with challenges, near death experiences and self discovery. Huff has built a complex world for her well developed characters. She doesn't fall into the trap of explaining everything to the reader and sometimes I had to go back and re-read small sections so I could understand the relationships between characters, races and cultures. If you are either a fan of Huff's or a fan of high fantasy then I urge you to read this book.

Melanie's Week in Review - January 12, 2014My second book was a bit of a departure for me. I was having a look at Amazon's e-book sale and came across Warrior's Revenge by Coreene Callahan. This is historical romance set in the early 13th century (assuming somewhere like England). It is the story of Aurora who has a Cinderella-like existence as the orphan living with her cruel and heartless aunt and uncle. Destined to meet a grisly end she escapes and finds herself under the protection of the tall, dark and dangerous Brigham. I used to read a lot of historical romance in my teens but haven't read any for a long time. Unfortunately, this wasn't one of the better examples of this genre. I always have a bit of a titter to myself when they describe the heroine/hero. They are always clean and fragrant with perfect figures, hair and teeth. Considering that in the 13th century there was no indoor plumbing, no glass for windows and your clothes were hardly ever washed but Aurora was smelled sweet like lavender and had flowing burnished locks! Hey, but I guess that's why it's fiction.

Well that is it for me this week. I am taking a short-ish hiatus from my Week in Review and hope to be back in February to tell you all about what I have been reading. Until then Happy Reading.


Review: A Peace Divided by Tanya HuffMelanie's Week in Review - October 16, 2016Melanie's Week in Review - February 7, 2016Melanie's Week in Review - June 29, 2014Melanie's Week in Review - January 12, 2014

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