Nevermore Author: Rob Thurman Series: Cal Leandros 10 Publisher: Roc, December 1, 2015 Format: Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 352 pages List Price: $7.99 (print); $7.99 (eBook) ISBN: 9780451473400 (print); 9780698184985 (eBook) Review Copy: Provided by the Publisher
Everyone knows that. I knew it intimately as everyone in my life died thanks to my one seemingly harmless mistake. I’d brought down Heaven, lifted up Hell, and set the world on fire, all due to one slip of the memory.
I forgot the pizzas…
Caliban is a dead man. The Vigil, a group devoted to concealing the paranormal from humanity, has decided Cal has stepped out of the shadows once too often, and death is the only sentence. They plan to send a supernatural assassin into the past to take down the younger, less lethal Cal.
But things change when The Vigil makes one last attempt on Caliban’s life in the present—and end up destroying everyone and everything he cares about.
Now, Cal has to save himself, warn those closest to him, and kill every Vigil bastard who stole his world. But if he fails, he and everyone in his life will be history…
Rob Thurman has rapidly become one of my favorite authors. Nevermore proves this to me even more than her last novel. This series focuses on Caliban and Niko, a pair of brothers who have one foot in this world and one in the supernatural one. Caliban is half human, half Auphe (an old species of monsters who hunted dinosaurs), and he has hidden for most of his adult life. However, from time to time, despite his best efforts, he is forced to use his special abilities, like his gating teleportation, within full view of human beings. Because of that, the Vigil has decided that he must die. The Vigil is an all-human group of warriors whose entire purpose is to keep humans from learning about the supernatural creatures that live among them.
There are few authors who can include time travel or reincarnation effectively in their work; Thurman uses both. Despite Caliban having destroyed the Vigil, the group manages to send their master assassin back into the past to kill Cal and his family. Caliban uses alien technology to transport himself to the past to try to prevent the assassination and destroy the master assassin. In doing so, he contacts Cal (the younger version of himself), Niko, and Goodfellow in an effort to warn them not only about the present problem but also about future ones. However, through his contact, he only entices the heroes into becoming involved themselves instead of avoiding trouble by lying low.
This novel is both darker and more funny than any previous one in the series. In this, Caliban is grieving deeply for his loss in the present and trying desperately not to cling too tightly to those in the past. The interaction, competition, and pure “snark” between Caliban and Cal (the younger) are the highlights of the story. I also appreciate the insight that Caliban brings to his younger self’s actions, explaining from a more mature perspective some of the attitudes and mores that affected him before. I particularly love the various sayings that he writes on the T-shirts that he goes through – unfortunately, none of them are appropriate for sharing!
Once more, this novel can be read separately from the other books in the series, but there is such rich depth to reading them in order. My only gripe with the book was the ending – it came too quickly and abruptly for me to appreciate – quite frankly, it was a cliffhanger, which I despise. Now I am left desperately waiting an entire year for another chapter to come in this saga. Sign me up for more Cal Leandros!
Downfall Author: Rob Thurman Series: A Cal Leandros Novel 9 Publisher: Roc, August 5, 2014 Format: Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 352 pages List Price: $7.99 (print) ISBN: 9780451465290 (print) Review Copy: Provided by the Publisher
I let it go—all of it. Everything I’d been saving up all my life, building and growing inside me, too much to hold in one half-human body. It pushed and fought to be free with a force that turned me into a bomb with a timer vibrating on zero. I was free.
But so was everything I’d fought so hard not to be....
Brothers Cal and Niko Leandros know trouble when they see it—and then proceed to wipe the floor with it. But now it seems their whole world is falling to pieces. Cal’s nightmarish monster side is growing ever stronger, changing Cal physically as well as mentally. Which is exactly what Grimm—Cal’s savage doppelgänger—wants. And when a covert supernatural organization decides that it’s time to put Cal down before he threatens pretty much everything else in existence, the brothers find themselves in a fight they actually might lose. But the dark temptations Cal has denied all his life may prove to be exactly what can save them.
In his ninth novel about the Leandros brothers, Cal and Niko, Rob Thurman finally focuses on one of the secondary characters – Robin Goodfellow. Robin is a puck, a trickster creature that has been around for millions of years. In the prior novel, Robin revealed that he has always been at the brothers’ sides as they have been reincarnated multiple times as warriors throughout the centuries. In Downfall, we actually hear from Robin’s point-of-view for the first time ever, and we learn that he has been influencing the boys in this life, even before they ever really “met.”
As she did with Slashback, Thurman alternates the chapter narrators, this time between Cal (as usual) and Robin. Cal is his usual snarky self, always balancing on the edge of sanity, worried about whether his humanity will be overrun by his monster side. Robin’s chapters are pure joy to read – adding a whole other dimension to the character. His narration illustrates his huge ego, his delight in tricking others, and an incredible depth of sorrow and fear over losing his only friends once more, despite his best efforts.
There are three major enemies out to remove Cal from the playing field now. The Vigil is an all-human group of warriors whose entire purpose is to keep humans from learning about the supernatural creatures which live among them. In the past, Cal had come to their attention and they debated whether to kill him if he could not control the Auphe (monster) side of him. So far, they had left him alone. However, in Slashback, Cal used his Gate (teleport) abilities to disappear in the middle of a group of humans in order to rescue his brother. The Vigil tends to disapprove of the public use of supernatural power and has decided to eliminate Cal for the good of humanity. Cal’s former girlfriend, Delilah, a homicidal werewolf, has just taken over as Alpha in the city, and like most exes, she has an axe to grind against Cal, literally. Lastly, Grimm, another half-breed like Cal, has returned and wants Cal to give into his monstrous heritage and join him in ravaging the earth.
Cal still is recovering from the damage he took in Slashback and is having difficulty using his Gate powers, and now his Auphe blood is changing his appearance physically, making him look less human. He fears that the physical change will be reflected mentally and that he will lose control of himself. Niko is determined to protect Cal at all costs, even that of his own life. Robin is trying everything he can to prevent losing the brothers to death again.
Once more, Thurman has created a story that can be read separately from the other books in the series, but reading them in order adds so much depth to the characterizations. In addition, the hyper focus on Robin adds a whole new element to the series. Through his narration, he points out various ways that he has helped the Leandros brothers in Thurman’s earlier works, and the reader learns much more of his back story than has ever been revealed before. Best of all, Robin tricks not only the enemies and the brothers, but the reader as well.
Thurman is a terrific writer who focuses as much on characterization as on plots. She offers a lot of humor, especially in the dialogue banter among the characters. I thoroughly enjoyed this addition to her Leandros brothers canon and the in-depth view of Robin Goodfellow.
The Qwillery is delighted to have author Rob Thurman as our guest today. The Grimrose Path, the 2nd Trickster novel, was released yesterday.
TQ: What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?
Rob: I hate to rewrite a scene. I would sooner write five more scenes to make that one scene work than rewrite it. It's bizarre.
TQ: Who are some of your favorite writers? and who do you feel has influenced your writing?
Rob: Kenneth Robeson, Rex Stout, Stephen King, Robert McCammon, Michael Moorcock, Robert Crais, Steven Brust, Roger Zelazny, Elizabeth Peters, Marjorie Liu. I think everyone I've ever read has influenced my writing--some in good ways and some in less than, but whatever you take in, for better or worse, affects you. Brust, Zelazny, and, oh, Fritz Lieber are definitely my fantasy favorites, even if two of them are old-school.
TQ: Are you a plotter or a panster?
Rob: I've said this before and it's still true. I'm so much a pantser that I don't even have pants. I'm a cheek of my ass writer. The only thing I know going in is the ending, and that I always know.
TQ: How many books are planned for the Trickster series?
Rob: I haven't decided yet.
TQ: Who would you pick to play Trixa Iktomi in a movie or TV series?
Rob: Nicole Lyn.
TQ: What's next?
Rob: Cal 6: Blackout (3/11), Chimera 2 (6/11), Cal 7...and then whatever I come up with in between. I have one idea but it's too young for adult and not in a necessarily popular gender/age group in YA. So I'm rather stuck there.
TQ: Thank you!
Three signed copies of The Grimrose Path will be given away. Details below.
And for all you Cal Leandros fans: the first chapter of Blackout (Cal Leandros 6) is an extra in the back of The Grimrose Path!
**Spoiler Alert**Spoiler Alert** It's strongly suggested that you read Trick of the Light before you read The Grimrose Path to avoid spoilage! **Spoiler Alert**Spoiler Alert**
About Rob's Books:
When Trixa learns of a powerful artifact known as the Light of Life, she knows she's hit the jackpot. Both sides-angel and demon-would give anything for it. But first she has to find it. And as Heaven and Hell ready for an apocalyptic throwdown, Trixa must decide where her true loyalty lies, and what she's ready to fight for. Because in her world, if you line up on the wrong side, you pay with more than your life...
Bar owner Triva Iktomi knows that inhuman creatures of light and darkness roam Las Vegas-especially since she's a bit more than human herself. She's just been approached with an unusual proposition. Something has slaughtered almost one thousand demons in six months. And the killing isn't going to stop unless Trixa and her friends step into the fight...
New from the national bestselling author of Roadkill
A sci-fi thriller that asks the questions...
What makes us human... What makes us unique... And what makes us kill?
Ten years ago, Stefan Korsak's younger brother was kidnapped. Not a day has passed that Stefan hasn't thought about him. As a rising figure in the Russian mafia, he has finally found him. But when he rescues Lukas, he must confront a terrible truth-his brother is no longer his brother. He is a trained, genetically-altered killer. Now, those who created him will do anything to reclaim him. And the closer Stefan grows to his brother, the more he realizes that saving Lukas may be easier than surviving him...
In New York, there's a troll under the Brooklyn Bridge, a boggle in Central Park, and a beautiful vampire in a penthouse on the Upper East Side. Of course, most humans are oblivious to this, but Cal Leandros is only half-human. His father's dark lineage is the stuff of nightmares-and he and his entire otherworldly race are after Cal.
He and his half-brother Niko have managed to stay a step ahead for three years, but now Cal's dad has found them again. And Cal is about to learn why they want him, why they've always wanted him...for he is
After saving the world from his fiendish father's side of the family, Cal Leandros and his stalwart half-brother Niko have settled down with new digs and a new gig-bodyguard and detective work. And in New York City, where preternatural beings stalk the streets just like normal folk, business is good. Their latest case has them going undercover for the Kin-the werewolf Mafia. A low-level Kin boss thinks a rival is setting him up for a fall, and wants proof. The place to start is the back room of Moonshine-a gambling club for non-humans. Cal thinks it's a simple in-and-out job. But Cal is very, very wrong.
Half-human Cal Leandros and his brother, Niko, aren't exactly prospering with their preternatural detective agency. Who could have guessed that business could dry up in New York City, where vampires, trolls, and other creepy crawlies are all over the place?
But now there-s a new arrival in the Big Apple. A malevolent evil with ancient powers is picking off humans like sheep, dead-set on making history with an orgy of blood and murder. And for Cal and Niko, this is one paycheck they-re going to have to earn.
Half-human Cal Leandros and his brother Niko are hired by the vampire Seamus to find out who has been following him—until Seamus turns up dead (or un-undead). Worse still is the return of Cal's nightmarish family, the Auphe. The last time Cal and Niko faced them, they were almost wiped out. Now, the Auphe want revenge. But first, they'll destroy everything Cal holds dear...
Book 5 New from the national bestselling author of Deathwish
It's time to lock, load, and hit the road...
Once, while half-human Cal Leandros and his brother Niko were working on a case, an ancient gypsy queen gave them a good old-fashioned backstabbing. Now, just as their P.I. business hits a slow patch, the old crone shows up with a job.
She wants them to find a stolen coffin that contains a blight that makes the Black Death seem like a fond memory. But the thief has already left town, so the Leandros brothers are going on the road. And if they're very, very lucky, there might even be a return trip...
The cover for Book 6
Rob Thurman is a New York Times Bestselling author of currently three series by Penguin Putnam’s imprint Roc: The Cal Leandros Novels, The Trickster Novels, and the Chimera Novels. Her first book, Nightlife, was released in 2006. She has written eight books to date and has two more due out in 2011. She has also written for a Charlaine Harris & Toni L.P. Kelner anthology, Wolfsbane and Mistletoe. She writes Urban Fantasy, science-fiction thrillers, and suspense-thrillers. Although she does not write Young Adult, her first book in the dark urban fantasy series, The Cal Leandros Novels, Nightlife, has been nominated for the Eliot Rosewater Award for 2011 for excellence in high school libraries—rather to her bemusement as she’d be the first to say her books are not for younger teens. However, apparently the librarians and teens disagree.
Her favorite review called her the lovechild of H.P. Lovecraft and Lenny Bruce. The fact that she read H.P. Lovecraft at the age of eight and is well-educated enough in pop-culture to know who Lenny Bruce was made this a review unmatched to this day. Her work is dark, non-stop action from beginning to end, and rife with purely evil sarcasm as sharp as a switchblade…and probably nearly as illegal as well. If one shoved Lord of the Rings, The Shining, and Pulp Fiction into a wood-chipper, the result would be what Rob aims for in her UF novels.
Rob curses in her novels. Frequently, if required. She feels if a monster rips off your arm and attempts to beat you to death with it, you will curse. You may be Amish, Mormon, or any saint returned to earth, but you will curse.
Rob is a member of the SFWA and nothing else as she barely has time to write her two to three books a year and continue to function as a human being. She lives in Indiana, land of endless fields, infinite cows, and rural pockets where dial-up is still the only soul-crushing option.
What: Three signed copies of The Grimrose Path (one per winner).
How: Leave a comment!
You can receive additional entries by:
1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.
2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.
3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.
There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.
Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.
When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Wednesday, September 15, 2010.
Book Buying Etiquette and Have A Chance to Win Some Books by Rob Thurman
Published: February 23,
2010 | 10:17
Please note date change for book buying - starts the 2nd of March and ends the 7th of March.
Ok, readers. If you want to help the authors that you love, like or simply tolerate. If you want them to keep writing their books. If you want to help them make a bestseller list ... please don't buy an author's book way ahead of its release date. Buy during the release week, on the release date and in the following 2 or 3 weeks. For example, if a book is released on Tuesday, February 23, books bought starting on Sunday, February 21 will be included in all the zany calculations that some bestseller list makers use. Others calculate from the official release date. I can't explain how each of the bestseller lists are determined because it's arcane (paranormal even) and different for each list, but I do know that buying out of the release window hurts and does not help authors. Of course if you can't get the book in the first 2 or 3 weeks buy it when you can, just don't buy it EARLY. It's best to buy it on the release date and soon after.
And now a giveaway to illustrate buying during the initial release period:
Buy a copy of Roadkill, the 5th Cal Leandros book, by Rob Thurman between the 2nd and 7th of March, 2010. Email a copy of your dated receipt to TheQwillery aht gmail daht com. If you submit a receipt you will receive 10 entries.
We'd love for you to buy the 5th book, but you can also leave a comment explaining why you would like to read the Cal Leandros series. Leave a comment and get 1 entry.
So to recap:
1) Buy Rob Thurman's Roadkill between March 2 and March 6, 2010. 2) Email a copy of your dated receipt to The Qwillery by March 8th, 11:59 PM Eastern Time. 3) Good for 5 entries.
1) Leave a comment telling us why you'd like to read the Cal Leandros series by March 8th, 11:59 PM Eastern Time. 2) Good for 1 entry.
All entries will be placed in a suitable receptacle and one drawn to receive the first 4 Cal Leandros books.
Please note this giveaway is only open to those of you with a US mailing address.
Cal Leandros Books 1 -4:
Book 1 - Nightlife
Welcome to the Big Apple. There's a troll under the Brooklyn Bridge, a boggle in Central Park, and a beautiful vampire in a penthouse on the Upper East Side---and that's only the beginning. Of course, most humans are oblivious to the preternatural nightlife around them, but Cal Leandros is only half human.
His father's dark lineage is the stuff of nightmares---and he and his entire otherworldly race are after Cal. Why? Cal hasn't exactly wanted to stick around long enough to find out.
He and his half brother, Niko, have managed to stay a step ahead for four years, but now Cal's dad has found them again. And Cal is about to learn why they want him, why they've always wanted him: He is the key to unleashing their hell on earth. The fate of the human world will be decided in the fight of Cal's life....
Book 2 - Moonshine
After saving the world from his fiendish father's side of the family, Cal Leandros and his stalwart half brother, Niko, have settled down with a new apartment and a new gig-bodyguard and detective work. And in New York City, where preternatural beings stalk the streets just like normal folk, business is good.
Their latest case has them going undercover for the Kin, the werewolf Mafia. A low-level Kin boss thinks a rival is setting him up for a fall, and wants proof. The place to start is the back room of Moonshine, a gambling club for non-humans. Cal thinks it's a simple in-and-out job. But Cal is very, very wrong.
Cal and Niko are being set up themselves-and the people behind it have bites much worse than their barks...
Book 3 - Madhouse Half-human Cal Leandros and his brother, Niko, aren't exactly prospering with their preternatural detective agency. Who could have guessed that business could dry up in New York City, where vampires, trolls, and other creepy crawlies are all over the place?
But now there's a new arrival in the Big Apple. A malevolent evil with ancient powers is picking off humans like sheep, dead-set on making history with an orgy of blood and murder. And for Cal and Niko, this is one paycheck they-re going to have to earn...if they live long enough to collect it.
Book 4 - Deathwish
Half-human Cal Leandros and his brother, Niko, are barely getting by with their preternatural detective agency when the vampire Seamus hires them. He's being followed, and he wants to know by whom. But the Leandros brothers have to do more than they had planned when Seamus turns up dead (or un-undead).
Worse still is the return of Cal's nightmarish family' the Auphe. The last time Cal faced them, the Auphe were almost wiped out. Now they want revenge. Cal knows that before the Auphe get to him, they will try to destroy everything and everyone he holds dear. Because for the Auphe, Cal's pain is a pleasure.
And they're feeling good.
The covers alone should make you want to read these books!