Tuesday, May 5, 2009


I was hoping to get up a review of Starfinder, John Marco's YA fantasy adventure that was released today, but after finishing work and then doing the grocery shopping, I was too tired. It is about halfway done so I am hoping to finish it tomorrow night (I usually end up working on reviews while waiting for Lost to come on). In the meantime, there is a very good interview with John Marco over at SciFiGuy - and a giveaway for a signed copy of the book.

Right now, I'm reading the new Lane Robins book, Kings and Assassins, that came out toward the end of last month. I really enjoyed her previous novel Maledicte and I'm also really enjoying this one. It's definitely for people who like characters who aren't always pleasant people, though.

Last week I visited Lane Robins's blog and I discovered she actually had two books come out last month - she also wrote an urban fantasy under the name Lyn Benedict called Sins & Shadows. I hadn't heard anything about that but ever since then I've been dying to read it, so I got a copy today and am planning to read it next.

After that, I plan to read Blackbringer by Laini Taylor, and then if I don't chicken out I'll attempt to read a book containing hard science fiction with my personal challenge book for this month, The Mote in God's Eye. I'm hoping to have time to squeeze in Busted Flush, the second book in the new Wild Cards trilogy after that, but if not, I'll read it sometime next month. (Last Argument of Kings will probably be one I review next month, too, since even though Best Served Cold isn't a sequel I'd like to read that one first. And I desperately need to procure Santa Olivia, the new Jacqueline Carey book that is coming out the end of this month.)

So what are you reading/hoping to read soon?


Tia Nevitt said...

I had not heard about Sins and Shadows until it arrived in the mail with my copy of The Trouble with Demons. I looked all over the place for Lyn Benedict's website, but all I found was a domain squatter.

I wonder why some writers openly write in multiple genres, and others use pseudonyms.

Nephtis said...

I sorta leafed through Kings and Assassins last weekend, but it didn't grab me the same way that Maledicte did - there was no central passion driving the story. Maybe I'm wrong, I'm looking forward to your review. I also read portions of Maledicte again, and was surprised to find it quite re-readable.

My most recent reads have been old favorites: Tanith Lee's Vivia and Elephantasm (her books are crack to me, thank god they don't end, she's written like a hundred novels) and Catherine Asaro's Diamond Star, latest Skolian book. I'm preparing for the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) exam in a month, so I plan to read zero fiction.

However, I've been nibbling on some short story collections: In the Forest of Forgetting by Theodora Goss, The Clockwork Phoenix collection edited by Mike Allen, and also starting to read something by Elisabeth Vonarburg, a French-Canadian scifi author in translation. Maybe The Labyrinth by Catherine Valente - I bought that last week and it's intriguing.

Mihai A. said...

I am looking forward to your review of "Kings and Assassins", because it is a book that I am curious about. I don't have a problem with characters who aren't always pleasant people ;) I also would like a copy of "Santa Olivia".
I am having so much books and so little time. I hope to read some more books this month :)

Benjamin said...

Interesting you should mention dark, unpleasant characters because the book I'm currently reading, Devil's Cape by Rob Rogers, certainly has plenty of those. It's about people with superpowers in the corrupt, decadent city of Devil's Cape in the Louisiana swamps. I'm only 70 pages into it but it's interesting so far.

I wonder why some writers openly write in multiple genres, and others use pseudonyms.I think there's the perception that particular subgenres like urban fantasy are not serious fantasy or serious genre fiction. Which is kind of ironic considering that speculative fiction as a whole is not often considered serious literature, but whatever.

orannia said...

HI Kristen *waves*

Apologies for being AWOL - insane week! I too am looking forward to your review of Kings and Assassians. I haven't heard of any of the authors you mentioned in the post *rubs hands with glee and ignores loudly complaining TBR list*

Oh, and I'm currently reading Blue Diablo! It's very good. After than I'm going to the dark side - urban fantasy/paranormal romance (JR Ward's latest book) and then delving into some historical suspense (CS Harris).

orannia said...

OK, so my library has Maledicte. A good read?

Kristen said...

Tia - I looked to see if Lane Robins had a separate site for Lyn Benedict, too, since I was curious if she'd have a separate site for that pen name. Maybe at some point. After hearing nothing about Sins & Shadows, I've now heard people talking about it a little bit at least - mostly that they hadn't heard anything about it!

Nephtis - I'm almost done with Kings & Assassins now, and it is definitely not as passionate or dramatic as Maledicte. This is is more about politics and court intrigue and there isn't much of a relationship between the characters other than what they need to do to outwit each other. I am enjoying it and think it is technically better, but I do think Maledicte was overall a more compelling story.

Tanith Lee is on my to-read list. I picked up Biting the Sun recently. I still haven't read Catherine Valente, either.

Good luck with the CFA exam!

Dark Wolf - I like reading about unpleasant characters, too. Sure, you wouldn't like them if you ever ran into them on the street, but they are interesting to read about! I know the feeling with too many books and too little time - there are lots I'd like to get in this month, but unless I were to take a month-long vacation, that's not going to happen.

Benjamin - Devil's Cape did sound rather interesting but I hadn't heard much about it so I'd forgotten about it. Thanks for mentioning it, I might have to check that one out (especially if it has dark, unpleasant characters).

I think you're right about why someone might use a pen name to write urban fantasy. It also does seem kind of funny to do so when fantasy is often looked down on for not being serious literature.

Orannia - Welcome back, glad to see you here! I'm glad you're enjoying Blue Diablo; I had a lot of fun with that one.

Maledicte is very good - it's a dark book about a woman possessed by the goddess of love and vengeance. It's one I've liked well enough to get as a gift for friends before.

orannia said...

Thank you Kristen! I'll add it to the list :)

...Kings & Assassins...it is definitely not as passionate or dramatic as Maledicte. This is is more about politics and court intrigue...OK, Kings & Assassins also sounds good, but I think I'll start with Maledicte :)

Kristen said...

Orannia - Yes, I would definitely recommend starting with Maledicte. Assassins and Kings can stand on its own but Maledicte provides some background information for it and is a more compelling story.