Wednesday, May 13, 2015
A Distant Sun is a short science fiction space opera. It was free when I downloaded it. It's now 99 cents. Alynna is carrying the key to the survival of her entire race back to her homeworld. Someone wants her mission to fail. This story is short but good. Too bad they started charging for it. Recommended.
Monday, May 11, 2015
The Cypher is the first novel in the Guardians Incorporated series. This book is free for the kindle. Thomas Byrne just moved in with his Grandpa Morgan in Carlsbad California. Thomas' parents disappeared, along with their whole ship, while on a cruise. Thomas' Grandpa was his closest relative. What Thomas and Morgan didn't know is that they were special. Guardians Incorporated has been around for thousands of years, using one name or another. When Thomas and his grandpa can successfully read a job ad that the Guardians place in the paper, they're recruited. Fighting monsters and trying to save the world wasn't in their initial job description, but it eventually becomes part of the deal. This is a young adult book, but still interesting. There's lots of action, and an extra bonus if you're a Lovecraft fan. Highly recommended.
Saturday, May 9, 2015
A Date with Fate is the first novel in the Adventures of Anabel Axelrod series. This book is free for the kindle. Anabel Axelrod has many good qualities. She's an independent woman who owns her own business. She's a good friend and sister. This book about Anabel's adventures is funny and suspenseful at times. It's also one of those books where you learn the signs of impending introspection overload and start skimming. I did that a lot. However, for all of Anabel's good qualities, she's also a slut. I almost stopped reading this book after the first chapter. It's all about her playing out her rape fantasy. The ending made me wish I had quit after that first chapter. This story had a lot of potential, but didn't provide what I want in a book. Not recommended.
Thursday, May 7, 2015
King's Folly is the second novel in the Legends of Fyrsta series. It's not free, but worth paying for. Unfortunately the third book isn't out yet. As A Thread in the Tangle ends, Isiilde, her new bonded Marsais, her father Oenghus, and three warriors of the blessed order, Acacia, Lucas, and Rivan, have just walked through a portal into a swarm of reapers. It just gets more interesting from there. They have no idea where they are and how far they'll have to travel to thwart the plans of the new bloodmagi Archlord Tharios. They meet new friends and make new enemies along the way, but they stick to the course. They're focused on stopping the evil that Tharois is planning. This is a great story. Very highly recommended. Now to wait for book three.
Thursday, April 30, 2015
The Copy is a science fiction legal thriller. This story is more of a novella than a full length novel. This book was free for the kindle when I downloaded it. It's now $2.99. Geoffrey Bartell is a very busy man. Geoffrey is the head of a bio-tech company fighting for its corporate life against government regulations and moral outrage. Geoffrey decides it would be easier to win this fight if there were two of him. But what do you do with your copy when you're done with him? A great story with a surprise ending. Highly recommended.
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
A Thread in the Tangle is the first novel in the Legends of Fyrsta series. Isiilde Jaal’Yasine is a nymph. This is an unfortunate thing for her, as in this age nymphs are nothing more than property. Valuable property, but nothing more. Isiilde will be sold to the highest bidder when she comes of age. Until then Isiilde is apprenticed to the Marsais, the Archlord of Wise One's Isle, and guarded by her father Oenghus, a Nuthaanian Berserker. How Isiilde is woven into the fabric of Fyrsta is the story, and a great story it is. Very highly recommended.
Thursday, April 23, 2015
The Perk is one of those books you can't put down. I seldom read a 500+ page novel in one day, but this one was an exception. Beck Hardin was a lot of things. A football star, a lawyer, a husband, a father, and a son. Beck was not happy. When Beck's wife lost to cancer, and he finally realized he couldn't be a lawyer and a single father, he took his two kids and headed back to someplace he swore he'd never go. He headed to his childhood home in Texas. Beck learns that the law of unintended consequences ensures that life is not fair, but sometimes the good guys win. Beck is a good guy. This is an amazing novel. Very highly recommended.
The Fall is the second novel in the Anna Kronberg Thriller series. I recommend you read the first novel, The Devil's Grin, to appreciate this book. It's worth appreciating. Anna Kronberg has been hiding since her escape at the end of The Devil's Grin. Alas the person who finds her is none other than Professor James Moriarty. He needs a bacteriologist and Anna is the best. This time it's Anna struggling against the evil Moriarity, with a little help from Sherlock Holmes. Very highly recommended.
Friday, April 17, 2015
A Demon And His Witch is the first novel in the Welcome To Hell series. This book was free when I downloaded it. It's now $2.99 for the kindle. Ysabel wasn't planning a painful death. The people of her village had other plans though. Ysabel was a witch and they'd decided she needed to burn. Now almost 500 years later, Ysabel's burning again. Every day. To stop this torture she has to capture the five souls who escaped hell and bring them back. Lucifer assigns Remy to help Ysabel. Ysabel hates Remy because he represents everything she hates in men. They warm up to each other eventually, and the story heats up at the same time. This is an entertaining tongue-in-cheek romp through hell. Highly recommended.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Adrift is a novel in the Corps Justice series. This book was free when I downloaded it. It's now $3.99 for the kindle. When Daniel Briggs wakes up he's not sure where he is. He's in a barn, but where is the barn? Then Daniel hears someone people coming for him and his survival instincts kick in. Daniel is out of the Marine Corps now, but once a marine, always a marine. The down of Defuniak Springs Florida is as corrupt as they come. Everyone is owned by, or owes, Max Laney. Unfortunately Daniel defended a waitress at the local bar from Laney's grandson Johnny. Trouble is coming. This is a great story and a good introduction Cooper's writing. Very highly recommended.
Monday, April 13, 2015
Pretty Little Liars is the first novel in the Pretty Little Liars series. This book is free for the kindle, and way overpriced. Clearly this is not my kind of book. Teenage angst is not my favorite genre. I have seven granddaughters though, and I thought I'd see what it was about. I thought the "ghost" aspect would make it interesting. I only continued to plow through this headache in order to resolve who the "ghost" was or is. And in a further act of disappointing the reader, the author never resolved that issue. I highly recommend nobody ever read any of this author's books again. I know I won't. Do you really need a specific recommendation after that?
Thursday, April 2, 2015
AMP Private War is the second novel in the AMP series. You can't have too many space battles or aliens. In this installment of the AMP series Don and Frig are still the crew of the Swift, but Don's fleet has grown so large they've started to terraform a planet to base their new government on. I big changed from one rogue messenger ship taking on the Milgari. The fight seems to be going their way, but more surprises are in store for the Swift's crew. Plenty of action, aliens, and adventure. Very highly recommended.
Monday, March 30, 2015
AMP Messenger is the first novel in the AMP series. This book is free for the kindle. This is space opera at it's best. Don Grange and his engineer Frig are the crew of the Swift, an old Blevin-class Defender. They're part of the Grid Messenger Service. They become more than simple messengers when the impending war with the Milgari starts to heat up. Thing get quite hot for Don and Frig, but they can take the heat. They can dish some out too. This is a great science fiction tale. Very highly recommended.
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Heretic is the first novel in the Singularity Series. This book is free for the kindle. Ceasar Wells is as successful as anyone is allowed to be under the Singularity, but Ceasar isn't happy. Ceasar is too smart to be satisfied with life under the Singularity, and that will prove to be fatal. That will turn Ceasar into a heretic. This book is amazing. It's reminiscent of several science fiction themes. The Matrix, Soylent Green, and The Terminator come to mind. The recent wave of red flags about artificial intelligence sets the stage for this book. This story makes me think of Herbert's Dune in its scope and style. Very highly recommended.
Saturday, March 21, 2015
Curse of the Bane is the second novel in the Last Apprentice series. This is a great series. Even if the books aren't free. Spook and Thomas have their work cut out for them this time. The Bane is an ancient evil that is bound in the catacombs below the Priestown cathedral. Spook tried to kill it once and failed. The Bane is getting stronger and Spook and Thomas have to stop it's influence from spreading. When Alice becomes bound to the Bane, the situation becomes worse and better. According to the prophecy, one of the three "sort of" heroes is going to die. Which one? Very highly recommended.
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Revenge of the Witch is the first novel in the Last Apprentice series. Thomas Ward is the seventh son of a seventh son. Thomas is almost thirteen years old, and he can't inherit his family's farm, so Thomas is going to take a chance as the apprentice to the Spook. The Spook is the one person who protect farms and villages of the county from things that go bump in the night. The Spook handles witches, ghasts, boggarts, and all manner of wicked creatures. Thomas has a lot to learn. He'd better learn quick. Thomas is the 30th apprentice to the Spook, and 10 of the previous apprentices are dead. This is a great scary story for kids of all ages, but not too scary. Highly recommended.
Waking Up is the third and last novel in the Devil's Dream Series. At least I hope so. I'd like to think that Matthew Brand could be killed. The FBI is still trying to find Brand, and still failing miserably. There is some hope, but it is a desperate plan, and not even the FBI's plan at that. Brand is still riding Arthur's body, but Arthur is starting to wake up. It's a race to see if Brand can destroy the sun before Arthur destroys him, or the FBI finally catches him. Of course it's down to the wire. This is a great story. Very highly recommended.
Sunday, March 15, 2015
A Nightmare is the second novel in the Devil's Dream Series. I couldn't leave this series alone. I have to know that Matthew Brand is dead, even if he's fictional. At the end of the first book in this series, The Devil's Dream, Matthew Brand is killed most thoroughly, or not. Brand somehow managed to store his essence in the computers at The Wall. Now Brand has transferred himself into the first prisoner who was ever stored at The Wall. Arthur Morgant was a serial rapist, but Arthur was immune to the AIDS virus. So they stored Arthur for posterity. Posterity turned out to be Matthew Brand. Brand took Arthur over and broke him out of The Wall. Now Brand is riding the body of a rapist and hell bent on destroying the human race. Brand's dream has switch from resurrection to revenge. There is a wicked cliff hanger, but I'm reading the third and last book next. Very highly recommended.
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Habit is a detective novel with some interesting crimes and unexpected criminals. This book was free for the kindle when I downloaded it. It's now $2.99. Brendan Healy has only been a detective for a few months when Rebecca Heilshorn is murdered. Brendan is working Rebecca's murder and involved in a shooting all on the same day. Before this story is over Brendan will take more damage than Detective John McClane his worst day, but this is not Die Hard. There's plenty of action, but this is a murder mystery with lots of twists and turns. Brendan has to defeat his own demons and the killer too. Very highly recommended.
Friday, March 6, 2015
A Quest of Heroes is the first novel in the Sorcerer's Ring series. This book is free for the kindle. Be warned there is a wicked cliff hanger and 16 books in this series. Thorgrin of the clan McCleod is the youngest of four sons at the age of 14. Thor tends to his father's sheep and dreams of joining the King's Legion. When he's not picked on conscription day, Thor takes the advice of a wise man, and heads off to the city of King's Court on his own. Thus begins the tale. Magic, knights, court intrigue, and fair maidens too. This is a great story if it wasn't for that cliff hanger. I may have to read the next in the series. Highly recommended.
Left Alive is the first novel in the Left Alive series. This book is free for the kindle. It may be overpriced. Charles Duwain is still hanging on to what's left of a dying world. Charles is trying to survive in Michigan, living along the polluted shores of Lake Huron. As things continue to get worse, Charles decides to try and find his two adult daughters living in Florida. Of course the world is dying because a scientist made a mistake trying to increase plant growth, and killed all plants. If you're going to write post-apocalypse, this is as good a reason for the death of the planet as any. Why do they never blame politicians? As I started I told myself if there were zombies I was going to stop reading. There were rumors from the beginning, but they didn't show up until a third of the way through the book so I stopped. The review of the first third is a bleak story with more angst than an adult with two grown daughters should ever have had. I was almost looking forward to the zombies so I could quit. Not recommended.
Monday, March 2, 2015
Child of the Ghosts is the first novel in the Ghosts series. This book is free for the kindle. Caina Amalas was a studious child of eleven years. Caina loved her father's library. She could already read in eight languages and was working on more. Then Caina's mother betrayed her and her father, and Caina's life changed forever. Caina became a child of the ghosts. This is a great story about a young girl overcoming evil. Caina grows up to fight against evil for the empire, but the evil facing the empire is formidable. Very highly recommended.
Saturday, February 28, 2015
The Devil's Dream is the first novel in the Devil's Dream Series. This book is free for the kindle. I have the second novel already, even though it's not free. Matthew Brand was probably the most brilliant human to ever live. Matthew was already working on his fourth PhD at 18. By 25 Matthew had changed the world as we know it. Then they killed Matthew's son, and Matthew focused his brilliance on bringing him back. Of course Matthew also intended to destroy anyone connected with his son's death. Matthew had turned into the most brilliant serial killer to ever live. And he's alive again. Fear is appropriate. This is an amazing book. The second one is already on my kindle. Very highly recommended.
Monday, February 23, 2015
Goliath is the first novel in the Ryan Mitchell Thriller series. This book is free for the kindle. Jennifer March is a history professor. Her obsession is the airship Goliath that crashed somewhere over Africa back in 1931. Jennifer is working on a dig to uncover a WWII military air crash in the Philippines when she's kidnapped. Ryan Mitchell is part of an elite team of ex-military operators working for the Polaris Operations. Their team was in the Philippines training locals when the kidnapping took place, and Ryan and his team were able to rescue Jennifer. At least that time. Ryan and Jennifer are draw together, but someone keeps trying to steal Jennifer. Finally they succeed. Ryan initiates a Polaris mission to rescue Jennifer. What Ryan doesn't realize is he's going to have to save the world at the same time. This is a wide ranging thriller. It reminds me of Clive Cussler's Dirk Pitt adventures. The only problem is the miracles Ryan's Polaris team pull off are even more unbelievable. I almost gave up reading when Ryan told a USMC full bird colonel, "this isn't the time for us to get into a pissing contest." Yeah, like that would happen. Still highly recommended.
Thursday, February 19, 2015
Alien Night on Union Station is the second novel in the EarthCent Ambassador series. This book is 99 cents for the kindle. I recommend you read the first novel, Date Night on Union Station, first. It's free again. Kelly Frank McAllister is now the full EarthCent ambassador to Union Station. It's been five years since Kelly and Joe got married and things have changed. They now have a daughter named Dorothy to go along with their foster son Paul. The family is happy, but something strange is happening on Union Station again. Stranger than normal anyway. Every alien species on the station is inviting Kelly to dinner and she's determined to figure out why. Another hilarious science fiction romp. Very highly recommended.
Tuesday, February 17, 2015
Aster Wood and the Lost Maps of Almara is the first novel in the Aster Wood series. This book was free when I downloaded it. It's now $3.99 for the kindle. Aster Wood is dreading the summer before he starts seventh grade. Aster's Earth is broken. First the world suffered a terrible drought. Now that the drought is over, you can't go out in the rain because it's poison. Aster himself is broken. He has a hole in his heart that surgery couldn't fix. Aster's Mom is dumping him way out in the country at his grandma's for the summer. What Aster doesn't realize is that Earth is not the only planet with humans, and the other planets aren't all broken. The attic is the key, if Aster can just find the map. This book is definitely targeted at young teens, but it's still a good story and interesting to follow. It would be a good bedtime read for kids who like adventure. Just don't finish for the night with some of the more exciting parts. Highly recommended.
Saturday, February 14, 2015
Transgression is the first novel in the City of God series. This book is free for the kindle. This story is a time-travel murder mystery, but the murder hasn't happened yet, even though it may happen thousands of years ago. This is a fascinating book. Rivka Meyers is an archeologist working a dig in Israel for the summer. Rivka has been in graduate school at Berkeley the last three years, but this summer she's taking a break from everything. Especially her battles about religion. Rivka is a Messianic Jew. She has to defend her religion from Christians and Jews alike. When Rivka unearths part of a mosaic, it could turn out to be the biggest find on the dig site. Ari Kazan is a physicist. His cousin Dov works on the dig with Rivka. Dov and Rivka are trying to fix Ari up with another woman working on the dig. Ari is working on a time machine, or as he would put it a closed timelike loop. Ari is the theorist and Damien West is the experimentalist on their team. The two of them almost have it working. It turns out, more than almost. Damien considers Christianity to be a plague. His plan is to use the time machine to go back and murder the apostle Paul to keep Christianity from ever starting. Rivka and Ari get caught up in his plot. The adventure of traveling to a time before Christians and modern Jews even existed is fascinating. The suspense as Rivka tries to stop Damien's plot is heart stopping. Even though Ari claims it's impossible to change the past, Rivka and he may have to make sure it comes out the way it should. The biblical and archeological references are just icing on the cake. Very highly recommended.
Thursday, February 12, 2015
Obsidian is the first novel in the Lux series. This book is free for the kindle. This story is a whole new take on strange next door neighbors. Katy and her Mom just moved from Gainesville Florida to Ketterman West Virginia. Ketterman is so small they don't even have mail delivery. Katy is just starting her senior year in high school and this move is a major change, but Katy understands her Mom's need to start over. Katy's next door neighbors have a girl and a boy her age. Twins actually. The girl Dee is nice. The boy Daemon is just mean. The trouble is he looks so good. As Katy spends the summer getting comfortable in her new home, with her new friends, Daemon becomes even more annoying. What's up with these neighbors? It turns out Dee and Daemon are not your normal people next door. They bring a whole new meaning to illegal alien. By the time Katy figures out what's going on, she's not just amazed, her life is in more danger than she ever imagined. This is a great book. The author is self-aware enough to joke about the angst in young adult supernatural novels. Very highly recommended.
Tuesday, February 10, 2015
The Box is the first novel in the Temple of the Blind series. This book is free for the kindle. This story is creepy in the best possible way. Albert is a computer science major in his first semester at Briar Hills University. When Albert came back to his locked car after class, there was a 10 inch wooden box on his front seat. There are cryptic carvings on five sides of the cube and a keyhole on the sixth. The box is an enigma that Albert is determined to solve. When Albert realizes the carving on one side of the cube is Brandy R, the name of his lab partner in chemistry, he decides to approach her about the box. Their adventures, while trying to solve the cube, defy logic. This is an amazing book that I couldn't put down. Harmon never disappoints. Very highly recommended.
Date Night on Union Station is the first novel in the EarthCent Ambassador series. This book was free when I downloaded it. It's now 99 cents for the kindle. Very few science fiction novels can make me laugh out loud. This one does it with exuberance. Union Station is a moon-sized alien space station run by a Stryx AI named Gryph. It's the most important space station in the sector. Even though humans are a drop in the bucket population wise, there are still over four hundred thousand of them to take care of. Kelly Frank is EarthCent's top diplomat on Union Station. She's the one tasked with taking care of her fellow humans. With that many humans to choose from, why is getting a decent date so hard! This is a hilarious science fiction tale of life and a lack of romance among the stars. Kelly deals with counterfeiters, kidnappers, cheaters, and con-men. It's all in a days work. Very highly recommended.
Sunday, February 8, 2015
Making David into Goliath is about Israel's struggle with public opinion. This book is 296 pages. It seems like 600. I like a good non-fiction book from time to time. This is not a good non-fiction book. This is a long boring academic work, chock full of quotes and footnotes, by an author with logorrhea. In a book that's less than 300 pages, the footnotes are over 30 pages. It's ironic that at one point the author accuses Edward Said of "creating a miasma of prose." I read the first four chapters diligently and then skimmed the rest. I appreciate and agree with the author's message. It could have been delivered in a much more readable manner. I recommend reading an in-depth review of this novel, from some legitimate news source, and using the book as a door stop. Not recommended.
Saturday, February 7, 2015
Grade A Stupid is the first novel in the Darcy Walker Series. This book is free for the kindle. You're in for a wild ride. Darcy Walker is 15. Darcy is your normal teenage girl, except when she's not. Darcy has her share of angst about boys, clothes, and school. Darcy also dabbles in finding dead bodies and trying to solve crimes. This can lead to bending rules, telling lies, and danger in general. Times like these are when Darcy is not your normal teenage girl. This is a great book. No supernatural creatures or special powers to prop up the story. Just not-so-normal adventures with a precocious teenage girl, and all in the suburbs of Cincinnati. Darcy even likes Skyline Chili! Very highly recommended.
Monday, February 2, 2015
Witch's Brew is the first novel in the Spellspinners of Melas County series. This book is free for the kindle. If you hate cliff hangers you can stop reading now. Lily is 16 and just coming into her own as a witch. Lily doesn't realize that she's going to be pivotal in rejoining the witches and warlocks, or the 100 year curse will steal all powers from the spellspinners forever. This is an interactive story. There are points where you get to choose the plot line that's followed. If I'd wanted to read a video game I wouldn't have selected a book. I did finish the story, although if I'd know about the cliff hanger I probably wouldn't have. You decide. Between the atrocious cliff hanger, the author not being able to make up her mind, and the teenage angst, I'm done with this series. Barely recommended.
Sunday, February 1, 2015
Out Of Darkness is the first novel in the Starborn Uprising series. This book is free for the kindle. Mora lives in a world where greyskins have been what defines life and death for over 60 years. Now Mora's village is desperate, so Mora heads for the town of Screven to try and get help. Mora is about to discover things about herself she never knew. Thing that will change the whole world. Another zombie story, but one with an interesting twist. Highly recommended.
Thursday, January 29, 2015
A Rug To Die For is a novel about Muslim prayer kilims, theft of antiquities, and murder. This book was free for the kindle when I downloaded it, but it's now $2.99. Paul and Brin Trask are just minding their own business, in their house in Turkey, when an old friend drops by. Their friend simply shows them two antique kilims, but it starts a series of events that will be the death of many people, and threaten Paul and Brin's lives as well. This is like a travel novel with antique rugs and danger thrown in. It was a good story, but I lose interest fast in people who live in the third world, but still mostly have first world problems. Besides, unless you're really interested in collectible prayer rugs, most of this will be dry as dust. Still recommended for the suspense and action.