Please check out my general fiction blog Pick of the Literate  or    Money Saving Tech Tips blog
or visit my web site to see the children's books which I have authored.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Spotlight on Edward Ashton's The End of Ordinary


Drew Bergen is an Engineer. He builds living things, one gene at a time. He's also kind of a doofus. Six years after the Stupid War -- a bloody, inconclusive clash between the Engineered and the UnAltered -- that's a dangerous combination.
Hannah is Drew's greatest project, modified in utero to be just a bit better at running than most humans. She’s also his daughter. Her plan for high school is simple: lay low and run fast. Unfortunately for Hannah, her cross-country team has other plans.

Jordan is just an ordinary Homo-Sap. But don’t let that fool you -- he’s also one of the richest kids at Briarwood, and even though there isn’t a single part of him that’s been engineered, someone has it out for him.

Drew thinks he’s working to develop a spiffy new strain of corn, but Hannah and her classmates disagree. They think he's cooking up the end of the world. When one of Drew's team members disappears, he begins to suspect that they might be right. Soon they're all in far over their heads, with corporate goons and government operatives hunting them, and millions of lives in the balance.

Energetic and bitingly satirical, THE END OF ORDINARY is a riveting near-future thriller that asks an important question: if we can't get along when our differences are barely skin deep, what happens when they run all the way down to the bone?

Edward Ashton lives with his adorably mopey dog, his inordinately patient wife, and a steadily diminishing number of daughters in Rochester, New York, where he studies new cancer therapies by day, and writes about the awful things his research may lead to by night. He is the author of Three Days in April, as well as several dozen short stories which have appeared in venues ranging from the newsletter of an Italian sausage company to Louisiana Literature and Escape Pod. You can find him online at edwardashton.com.

THE END OF ORDINARY Harper Voyager Impulse
June 20, 2017 ISBN: 9780062690319
$3.99 eBook

Link to my review of  Ashton's  Three Days in April which I thoroughly enjoyed. 

This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Spotlight on Owl and the Electric Samurai by Kristi Charish

The Owl Series by Kristi Charish, Volume 3
Pocket Star EBook
May 8, 2017
ISBN 9781501139727

OWL AND THE ELECTRIC SAMURAI is the third exciting novel starring the unforgettable antiquities thief Owl—a modern-day “Indiana Jane” who reluctantly navigates the hidden supernatural world. From the pen of rising urban fantasy star Kristi Charish (Owl and the Japanese Circus), for fantasy lovers everywhere…

The International Archaeology Association (IAA) is responsible for keeping all things supernatural under wraps. They’re also responsible for ruining the promising archaeology career of Alix Hiboux, better known as Owl. Needless to say, Owl’s still a little sore about that.

Just to keep Owl’s life lively, the IAA has opened a bounty on the two designers of World Quest, the online RPG that is much, much more than it seems. Owl needs to locate the notorious gaming duo before the other mercenaries do. But finding the gamers won’t be easy since every clue points to them hiding out in the legendary lost city of Shangri-La. Not to mention that the last time Owl and the game designers spoke, their conversation didn’t exactly end on the best note…

Meanwhile, undercurrents of supernatural politics are running amok in Tokyo, dragging Owl and her friends into a deadly game of wits with an opponent who calls himself the Electric Samurai. The cost of losing? All-out civil war between two powerful supernatural factions. All in all, just another great day on the job.

About the author:
Kristi Charish is a scientist and science fiction/fantasy writer who resides in Vancouver, Canada with her spousal unit, Steve, and two cats named Captain Flash and Alaska. She received her BSc and MSc from Simon Fraser University in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, and her PhD in Zoology from the University of British Columbia. Kristi writes what she loves; adventure heavy stories featuring strong, savvy female protagonists.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Lotus Blue By Cat Sparks

Sometime in a very dystopian future in a world devastated by war, a nomad caravan is crossing a desolate plain.   Star, despite being in a dystopian future, is a stereotypical teenager.  She resents authority, she avoids work and responsibility and longs for a luxurious future.   A series of unfortunate events leads to her being on her own and tasked to save the world.

Star is the main protagonist but she has supporting characters that change through the book.  A Templar warrior is one of the few characters that roam all the pages of the story.  He is a cyborg, specifically created to fight and is possibly hundreds of years old.  The world had nearly self-destructedold tech to sell to the cities.
with wars that destroyed nearly all the infrastructure. Some subterranean cities survived as well as surface dwellers who scavenge for

I don't know that the author intended the story to be a cautionary tale about AI but the surviving weapons intend to continue fighting regardless of human overwatch.  

This was a good adventure.

Web:  https://catsparks.net/

This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Assassin's Price L.E. Modesitt, jr

This book is part of the Imagers series but imagers are only peripherally  involved.  Modesitt's stories are character centric and philosophically laden.   He takes you into the mind of his central character,  Charyn, and allows you to see how his decisions are made and where he is planning of going.  Charyn is the heir to the Rex and determined to be his own person.  Lorien is the Rex and seems demanding and short sighted.  

The story line includes a mistress musician who educates Charyn in music and far more than mere coital positions.   Palenya illustrates the fate that lies in store for young, single women in a closed, male dominated society.  This ironically appears to be carried through even in the character list in the preface of the book as she doesn't even appear to be in it. (I went over the list several times, sure I missed her name, but apparently not.)

As many of Modesitt's books there isn't non-stop action but there is action amidst the soul searching and philosophizing.  There is the requisite foul treachery and rule bending justice.     

I look forward to the next book with the possibility of seeing the development of a viable steam ship to provide Solidar with a more powerful navy.

I highly recommend. 

 This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

STEEPLEJACK Series Giveaway Starting Today--Celebrating STRONG Female Protagonists

Misogynist Beware!
This series features a strong female protagonist!

The winner of this two book series GiveAway will be 
randomly selected on June 6th. 
The books will be delivered by the publisher sometime after that and no I don't know their time frame for delivery.
Please fill out the form below and hit submit.   I  do not sell or give away any email addresses. (Except for the winner whose email address will be given to the book publisher. )

Thursday, April 27, 2017

STEEPLEJACK by A. J. Hartley

Spotlight ON:


​“What a world Hartley has created! A world of great danger... murder... suspense on just about every page. And enough twists and surprises to keep the pages turning long into the night.” —R.L. Stine, bestselling author of Goosebumps

“Readers who come for the tightly plotted mystery will stay for the heroine who does all she can to resist.” —Kirkus, starred review

“Hartley has composed another electrifying fantasy that buzzes with intrigue and timely political and social issues, making this a must-have addition to any collection.”—Booklist, starred review

 “A richly realized world, an intensely likable character, and a mystery to die for.” —Cory Doctorow, New York Times-bestselling author


Thoughtfully imaginative, action-packed, and set in a 19th-century South African fantasy world, Steeplejack by New York Times-bestselling A.J. Hartley was met with resounding critical acclaim from authors, reviewers, and readers alike. Steeplejack introduced the world to Anglet Sutonga, and brave and smart young woman navigating the complicated world of Bar-Selehm. In Firebrand, Ang goes undercover at an elite club in order to unmask a thief selling government secrets, but stumbles upon a greater plot that endangers the most vulnerable in Bar-Selehm.

Once a steeplejack, Ang is used to scaling the heights of Bar-Selehm. Nowadays she assists politician Josiah Willinghouse behind the scenes of Parliament. The latest threat to the city-state: government plans for a secret weapon are stolen and feared to be sold to the rival nation of Grappoli. The investigation leads right to the doorsteps of Elitus, one of the most exclusive social clubs in the city. In order to catch the thief, Ang must pretend to be a foreign princess and infiltrate Elitus. But Ang is far from royal material, so Willinghouse enlists help from the exacting Madam Nahreem to train Ang in the ways of Bar-Selehm’s upper class.

Meanwhile, refugees are trickling into the city, fleeing Grappoli-fueled conflicts in the north. A demagogue in Parliament is proposing extreme measures to get rid of them, and Ang soon discovers that one theft could spark a conflagration of conspiracy that threatens the most vulnerable of Bar-Selehm. Unless she can stop it.

A.J. HARTLEY is the international bestselling author of a dozen novels including several archaeological thrillers, the Darwen Arkwright children’s series, the Will Hawthorne fantasy adventures, and novels based on Macbeth and Hamlet. He is the Robinson Distinguished Professor of Shakespeare at UNC Charlotte. Find out more at http://ajhartley.net/

This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.