Thursday, May 24, 2018

Review: Sparrow Hill Road by Seanan McGuire

This is the story of Rose Marshall, mostly after her untimely death. Rose was a sweet 16 teenaged girl who was a little pissed and was driving herself to the prom when she was run off the road by another car. As it turns out, it was Bobby Cross who was driving that car and he meant trouble for Rose, trouble that doesn't go away even once she's dead.

The book has an interesting format. There are stories about the different urban legends she has become associated with. And there is an overall arc about her conflict with Bobby Cross. Both kept my interest. It's also told part in the present and part in flashbacks. In spite of all that, it's easy enough to follow what's going on and enjoy the ride.

There is good characterization, especially of Rose. The world-building is solid and interesting. The stories move along at a decent pace and relate to each other.

Overall, I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. It's worth a read if you enjoy urban fantasy or ghost stories. And if you enjoy other books by this same author, such as the InCryptid series, then you will probably enjoy this book as well.

Sparrow Hill Road by Seanan McGuire is book one in the Ghost Roads series. It was originally published in May 2014, a new edition is being released June 2018 from DAW. Book two, The Girl in the Green Silk Gown by Seanan McGuire is expected to be released July 17th, 2018 from DAW.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. This doesn't affect my opinions. Everything herein is my own opinion and freely given.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Can't Wait Wednesday/Waiting on Wednesday #239: The Girl in the Green Silk Gown by Seanan McGuire


"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event which had been hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. I'm now linking up with "Can't-Wait Wednesday" hosted over at Wishful Endings.


Synopsis from Goodreads:

The second book in the Ghost Roads series returns to the highways of America, where hitchhiking ghost Rose Marshall continues her battle with her killer--the immortal Bobby Cross.

Once and twice and thrice around,
Put your heart into the ground.
Four and five and six tears shed,
Give your love unto the dead.
Seven shadows on the wall,
Eight have come to watch your fall:
One’s for the gargoyle, one’s for the grave,
And the last is for the one you’ll never save.
 
For Rose Marshall, death has long since become the only life she really knows.  She’s been sweet sixteen for more than sixty years, hitchhiking her way along the highways and byways of America, sometimes seen as an avenging angel, sometimes seen as a killer in her own right, but always Rose, the Phantom Prom Date, the Girl in the Green Silk Gown.

The man who killed her is still out there, thanks to a crossroads bargain that won’t let him die, and he’s looking for the one who got away.  When Bobby Cross comes back into the picture, there’s going to be hell to pay—possibly literally.

Rose has worked for decades to make a place for herself in the twilight.  Can she defend it, when Bobby Cross comes to take her down?  Can she find a way to navigate the worlds of the living and the dead, and make it home before her hitchhiker’s luck runs out?
              
There’s only one way to know for sure.

Nine will let you count the cost:
All you had and all you lost.
Ten is more than time can tell,
Cut the cord and ring the bell.
Count eleven, twelve, and then,
Thirteen takes you home again.
One’s for the shadow, one’s for the tree,
And the last is for the blessing of Persephone.
 


The Girl in the Green Silk Gown by Seanan McGuire is expected to be published July 17th, 2018 from DAW.

Why am I waiting on this one? It's the continuing story of Rose Marshall. I've got to know what happens with her and Bobby Cross. He seems so evil. I want her to beat him. And I want to know how she does it.

What book are you waiting on this week? Share it or a link in the comments so we can check it out and maybe add it to our TBR lists. Thanks for coming by and Happy Reading!

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Teaser Tuesday: Grave Peril by Jim Butcher


Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by The Purplebooker.
Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
 Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
 BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title and author so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! 

My office is in a building in midtown Chicago. It's an older building, and not in the best of shape, especially since there was that problem with the elevator last year. I don't care what anyone says, that wasn't my fault. When a giant scorpion the size of an Irish wolfhound is tearing its way through the roof of your elevator car, you get real willing to take desperate measures. (p21)

Grave Peril by Jim Butcher was published September 4th, 2001 by Roc. It's the third book in the Dresden Files series.

Would you keep reading? What's your teaser this week? Share it or a link in the comments. Are you enjoying your book? Let us know! Happy Reading!

Monday, May 21, 2018

Review: Dark Queen by Faith Hunter

Dark Queen by Faith Hunter is the 12th book in the Jane Yellowrock series. This is not a standalone type novel. It's definitely a part of a series and is a culmination of some plot points. It would seem this was originally to be the last book in the series, but part way through they decided to add two more books to it. It is still a very good book.

Leo, the master of the city of New Orleans, has been challenged to a blood challenge called the Sangre Duello by the leader of the European vampires. This is serious. If Leo and his people lose, then New Orleans will come under the European vamps control and people will suffer - humans, witches, vampires, everyone.

Jane, as Leo's enforcer, is very much involved in the preparations for the challenge. She is having to learn to accept that she can't control everything and must delegate.

The action is virtually nonstop. It starts early on with Jane answering the door and being shot at. It doesn't seem to let up much until after the challenge has been met. It's a fast-paced read.

I liked it all. Jane's flippancy infects Leo's handling of things but in a calculated way.  I also liked the conversations she has with Beast who is "good ambush hunter" among other things. The touch of romance is nice and gives a brief respite from the action. There is also a subplot involving a possible blood relation of Jane's.

Is the ending a cliffhanger? In many ways, yes. It's still very readable as it is. I do look forward to the next book to see how the issues are resolved.

Overall, I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. It's a class act, well-written with good characterization. It kept my attention and piqued my interest as to where the series will go from here. Do not read this as your first Jane Yellowrock book ever.

Dark Queen by Faith Hunter was released May 1st, 2018 by Ace.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. This in no way influences my opinions. This is my honest review.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Review: The Truth About Animals by Lucy Cooke

The Truth About Animals: Stoned Sloths, Lovelorn Hippos, and Other Tales from the Wild Side of Wildlife by Lucy Cooke is an impressive selection of information on 13 different animals. Eels, beavers, sloths, hyenas, vultures, bats, frogs, storks, hippos, moose, pandas, penguins, and chimpanzees are covered.

Each chapter includes notes about what people thought about the animal in the past, what kinds of behaviors are in question, and what we know about the animal currently as compared to the past. There are plenty of facts both historical and scientific. Humor is sprinkled throughout.

Even though there is humor, I didn't find it quite as funny as I expected it to be when the blurb compared the book to Mary Roach and Bill Bryson. I enjoyed the facts and most of the chapters, but I was almost lost in the first chapter about eels and their sex lives and origins. Things picked up from there for me, thankfully. The chapters I enjoyed the most were the ones on sloths, hippos, pandas, and penguins.

Just a note, a lot of the book has to do with reproduction. And some of the historical facts involve less than humane treatment of the animals in the past.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.  Overall. it's well-written and has interesting facts.

The Truth About Animals by Lucy Cooke was released April 17th, 2018 from Basic Books part of the Hachette Book Group.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. My review is freely given and all my own opinions.


Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Can't Wait Wednesday/Waiting on Wednesday #238: Girl at the Grave by Teri Bailey Black


"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly event which had been hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating. I'm now linking up with "Can't-Wait Wednesday" hosted over at Wishful Endings.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Early Libba Bray meets Stalking Jack the Ripper and William Ritter’s Jackaby series in this richly atmospheric Gothic tale of murder and romance in 1850s New England

Valentine has spent years trying to outrun her mother's legacy. But small towns have long memories, and when a new string of murders occurs, all signs point to the daughter of a murderer. 

Only one person believes Valentine is innocent—Rowan Blackshaw, the son of the man her mother killed all those years ago. Valentine vows to find the real killer, but when she finally uncovers the horrifying truth, she must choose to face her own dark secrets, even if it means losing Rowan in the end.

Debut author Terri Bailey Black unearths the long-buried secrets of a small New England town in this richly atmospheric Gothic tale of murder, guilt, redemption, and finding love where least expected.


Girl at the Grave by Teri Bailey Black is expected to be released August 7th, 2018 from Tor Teen.

Why am I waiting on this one? It sounds like a good mystery/thriller novel. I like the cover; it has a Gothic feel to it. I have enjoyed Gothic stories in the past, so there's a good chance I will like this one as well. And it's a debut novel. I like reading new authors.

What book are you waiting on this week? Share it or a link in the comments so we can check it out and maybe add it to our TBR lists. Thanks for coming by and Happy Reading!

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Teaser Tuesday: Dark Queen by Faith Hunter


Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by The Purplebooker.
Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
 Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
 BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title and author so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! 

I chuckled and the sound was half-Beast. Antifreeze flinched just the tiniest bit. Right. I was a monster and living with monsters never got easier. (49% through on my Kindle)

Dark Queen by Faith Hunter was published May 1st, 2018 by Ace.

Would you keep reading? What's your teaser this week? Share it or a link in the comments. Are you enjoying your book? Let us know! Happy Reading!