Brimstone – Cherie Priest

Synopsis:
In the trenches of Europe during the Great War, Tomás Cordero operated a weapon more devastating than any gun: a flame projector that doused the enemy in liquid fire. Having left the battlefield a shattered man, he comes home to Tampa, Florida, to find yet more tragedy–in his absence, his wife has died of the flu. Haunted by memories of the woman he loved and the atrocities he perpetrated, Tomás dreams of fire and finds himself setting match to flame when awake…

Alice Dartle, a talented clairvoyant, leaves her family behind in Virginia to live among others who share her gifts in the community of Cassadaga, Florida. She, too, dreams of fire, knowing her nightmares are connected to the shell-shocked war veteran and widower. And she believes she can bring peace to him and his wife’s spirit.

But the inferno that threatens to consume Tomás and Alice was set ablaze centuries ago by someone whose hatred transcended death itself…

Continue reading “Brimstone – Cherie Priest”

Red Sister – Mark Lawrence

Releases: 4.7.2017

Synopsis: At the Convent of Sweet Mercy, young girls are raised to be killers. In some children the old bloods show, gifting rare talents that can be honed to deadly or mystic effect. But even the mistresses of sword and shadow don’t truly understand what they have purchased when Nona Grey is brought to their halls.

Despite the security and isolation of the convent, Nona’s secret and violent past finds her out, drawing with it the tangled politics of a crumbling empire. Her arrival sparks old feuds to life, igniting vicious struggles within the church and even drawing the eye of the emperor himself. Continue reading “Red Sister – Mark Lawrence”

Emperor of Thorns – Mark Lawrence

Synopsis: King Jorg Ancrath is twenty now—and king of seven nations. His goal—revenge against his father—has not yet been realized, and the demons that haunt him have only grown stronger. Yet no matter how tortured his path, he intends to take the next step in his upward climb.

But he soon finds an adversary standing in his way, a necromancer unlike any he has ever faced—a figure hated and feared even more than himself: the Dead King. Continue reading “Emperor of Thorns – Mark Lawrence”

King of Thorns – Mark Lawrence

I drive my knife in low, at the base of his scrotum. I leave it there. I don’t want it back. Also, if I pull it free he will bleed to death quickly. I think he should linger.

I am in love with this series! Mark Lawrence is a new favorite, for sure. This is a violent story told in a grim future, but with Lawrence at the helm there is a haunting elegance about it which makes my senses tingle in all of the best ways! Continue reading “King of Thorns – Mark Lawrence”

Aftermath: Empire’s End – Chuck Wendig

“Many of them still have rebel hearts beating in their chests—it’s in them to question orders, to fight back when something doesn’t seem right. Even if it’s coming from someone you trust. People trusted Palpatine, once.”
-Chuck Wendig, Aftermath: Empire’s End

I want to be totally clear about one thing before I start this review: the Aftermath trilogy is my Thrawn trilogy. Continue reading “Aftermath: Empire’s End – Chuck Wendig”

Last Argument of Kings – Joe Abercrombie

“Dance!” laughed the Bloody-Nine, and the sword reeled around him. He filled the air with blood, and broken weapons, and the parts of men, and these good things wrote secret letters, and described sacred patterns that only he could see and understand. Blades pricked and nicked and dug at him but they were nothing. He repaid each mark upon his burning skin one-hundred fold, and the Bloody-Nine laughed, and the wind, and the fire, and the faces on the shields laughed with him, and could not stop.” 

Continue reading “Last Argument of Kings – Joe Abercrombie”

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – Alexander Freed

“Chirrut Îmwe felt the warmth of an alien star on his skin and a sea breeze pawing at his robes. The heel of his staff dug into hard-packed sand. Beneath the odors of the conflagration and death was the perfume of jungle flowers and the sweet stink of dirt beetles. Beyond the electric snap of blaster bolts he heard a high-pitched chittering-the noise of a beast he had never encountered. To this cacophony, he added his voice:
‘I am one with the Force and the Force is with me.'”
—Alexander Freed, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Alexander Freed’s novelization for Rogue One is, put simply, one of the best Star Wars books I’ve ever read. Continue reading “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – Alexander Freed”

The OA

The OA, a Netflix original, premiered on December 16 2016. The series is a mix of mystery; sci-fi; fantasy; supernatural; drama; interpretative dance; Lost; Stranger Things; mind-fuckery; this that & the other thing, etc.

The series was created by Brit Marling (who stars as “The OA”) & Zal (BATMAN) Batmanglij.

Synopsis:
The series centers on Prairie Johnson, an adopted young woman who resurfaces after having been missing for seven years. Upon her return, Johnson calls herself “The OA”, exhibits scars on her back, and can see, despite having been blind when she disappeared. While many believe she is a miracle, others worry that she could be dangerous.

Continue reading “The OA”

King of Thorns – Mark Lawrence

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And now, an exhaustive look at the dos and don’ts of kicking a severed head, as told by Jorg Ancrath:

“I dropped the head and kicked it into the crowd. I say ‘kicked’ but in truth it’s a bad idea to kick a head. I learned that years ago, a lesson that cost me two broken toes. What you want to do is shove the head with the side of your foot, like you’re throwing it. It’s going to roll anyhow so you don’t need that much force. See, the thing about severed heads is the owner no longer has any interest in minimizing the force of the blow, or any ability to do so for that matter. When you kick somebody in the head as you do from time to time, they tend to be actively trying to move themselves out of the way and the contact is lessened. A severed head is dead weight, even if it’s watching you.”

I just finished King of Thorns by Mark Lawrence, and I am literally in awe of this author. This is some of the best dark fantasy I’ve ever read, easy. For all the grittiness and horror and bleakness in this series, Mark Lawrence writes beautifully, and turns a phrase as well as anyone. Continue reading “King of Thorns – Mark Lawrence”