The Warrior Within – Angus McIntyre

Releases 3.6.18

Synopsis: Karsman has a dozen different people living in his head, each the master of a different set of skills and hoping to gain mastery of Karsman’s body. He survives on a backwater planet dominated by the Muljaddy, a mostly ambivalent religious autocracy, where devotion and prayer can be traded in for subsistence wages and enough food to survive. Surrounded by artifacts of a long dead civilization, the population survives off its salvage, with Karsman eking out an uneventful life as the unofficial mayor of his small town.

But that life is soon interrupted, when a group of commandos arrive, coming from the wastelands as only off-worlders could. They’ve come to kill a woman, or so they say. At first the commandos merely threaten as they search. Unable to find what they’re looking for, they begin to ratchet up their measures, separating the men from the women, instigating violent encounters, and eventually staging a coup against the Muljaddy and his Temple.

Faced with the task of protecting his quiet town and a woman he might love from the commandos who could want to kill her, Karsman must balance between maintaining his personality and harnessing the personas whose skills he desperately needs. Continue reading “The Warrior Within – Angus McIntyre”

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Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View

Synopsis: Experience Star Wars: A New Hope from a whole new point of view.

On May 25, 1977, the world was introduced to Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, C-3PO, R2-D2, Chewbacca, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Darth Vader, and a galaxy full of possibilities. In honor of the 40th anniversary, more than 40 contributors lend their vision to this retelling of Star Wars. Each of the 40 short stories reimagines a moment from the original film, but through the eyes of a supporting character. From a Certain Point of View features contributions by best-selling authors, trendsetting artists, and treasured voices from the literary history of Star Wars. Continue reading “Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View”

The Grimdragons Top Ten of 2017!

Corey: What better way to cap off our (almost) first year of blogging than with a year-end TOP TEN list?!!? Who doesn’t love a good list, Holly?! A MONSTER!!! That’s who. I believe we’ve read & reviewed 40 books for the blog this year (I’m not counting again, but it’s 40…ish), but these 10….these were fated to be on this list. I think we only had one or two differences when we each made our lists, no? (Tower Lord by Anthony Ryan would be my honorable mention!!) GAHH!!! We read so many awesome books this year, Holly!!! Can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store for The Grimdragons!!!

Holly: Lists! ALL THE LISTS! Although admittedly, I break out into a cold sweat when trying to narrow down all the things I love into a tiny numbered list though. I CANNOT BE CONTAINED! Our first year of blogging.. wow. The poor blog has been neglected as of late what with distractions, holidays, LIFE! But we plan on resurrecting the beast in the new year. Maybe give it an overhaul & make this clunky ship soar again! We both love a list, so this needed to happen! A top ten.. out of all the amazing books we’ve read this year. This list is pretty fucking wicked! There is a lot to love here. We literally had one difference when comparing. My honorable mention was for Emperor of Thorns. I just can’t shake Jorg! I love that series so goddamn much!! It’s been a fantastic year for reading. I am so excited to see what badass books we get to in 2018! LET’S DO THE DAMN THING!!! Continue reading “The Grimdragons Top Ten of 2017!”

Phasma – Delilah S. Dawson

Synopsis: One of the most cunning and merciless officers of the First Order, Captain Phasma commands the favor of her superiors, the respect of her peers, and the terror of her enemies. But for all her renown, Phasma remains as virtually unknown as the impassive expression on her gleaming chrome helmet. Now, an adversary is bent on unearthing her mysterious origins—and exposing a secret she guards as zealously and ruthlessly as she serves her masters. Continue reading “Phasma – Delilah S. Dawson”

Starfire: A Red Peace – Spencer Ellsworth

Synopsis: A Red Peace, first in Spencer Ellsworth’s Starfire trilogy, is an action-packed space opera in a universe where the oppressed half-Jorian crosses have risen up to supplant humanity and dominate the galaxy.

Half-breed human star navigator Jaqi, working the edges of human-settled space on contract to whoever will hire her, stumbles into possession of an artifact that the leader of the Resistance wants desperately enough to send his personal guard after. An interstellar empire and the fate of the remnant of humanity hang in the balance.

Spencer Ellsworth has written a classic space opera, with space battles between giant bugs, sun-sized spiders, planets of cyborgs and a heroine with enough grit to bring down the galaxy’s newest warlord. Continue reading “Starfire: A Red Peace – Spencer Ellsworth”

Entropy in Bloom – Jeremy Robert Johnson

Synopsis: For more than a decade, Jeremy Robert Johnson has been bubbling under the surface of both literary and genre fiction. His short stories present a brilliantly dark and audaciously weird realm where cosmic nightmares collide with all-too-human characters and apocalypses of all shapes and sizes loom ominously. In “Persistence Hunting,” a lonely distance runner is seduced into a brutal life of crime with an ever-narrowing path for escape. In “When Susurrus Stirs,” an unlucky pacifist must stop a horrifying parasite from turning his body into a sentient hive. Running through all of Johnson’s work is a hallucinatory vision and deeply-felt empathy, earning the author a reputation as one of today’s most daring and thrilling writers. 

Featuring the best of his independently-published short fiction, as well as an exclusive, never-before-published novella “The Sleep of Judges” ―where a father’s fight against the denizens of a drug den becomes a mind-bending suburban nightmare ― Entropy in Bloom is a perfect compendium for avid fans and an ideal entry point for adventurous readers seeking the humor, heartbreak, and terror of JRJ’s strange new worlds. Continue reading “Entropy in Bloom – Jeremy Robert Johnson”

Battlefront II: Inferno Squad – Christie Golden

Synopsis: The Rebellion may have heroes like Jyn Ersoand and Luke Skywalker. But the Empire has Inferno Squad.

After the humiliating theft of the Death Starplans and the resulting destruction of the battle station, the Empire is on the defensive. In response to this stunning defeat, the Imperial Navy has authorized the formation of an elite team of soldiers, known as Inferno Squad. Their mission: infiltrate and eliminate the remnants of Saw Gerrera’s Partisans. Following the death of their leader, the Partisans have carried on his extremist legacy, determined to thwart the Empire—no matter what the cost. Now, Inferno Squad must prove their status as the best of the best and take down the Partisans from within. But as the danger intensifies and the threat of discovery grows, how far will Inferno Squad go to ensure the safety of the Empire? Continue reading “Battlefront II: Inferno Squad – Christie Golden”

Outriders – Jay Posey

Synopsis:

Captain Lincoln Suh died on a Wednesday. And things only got harder from there.

Snatched out of special operations and thrown headfirst into a secretive new unit, Lincoln finds himself as the team leader for the 519th Applied Intelligence Group, better known as the Outriders. And his first day on the job brings a mission with the highest possible stakes.

A dangerously cunning woman who most assuredly should be dead has seemingly returned. And her plans aren’t just devastating, they might be unstoppable.

How do you defeat a hidden enemy when you can’t let them know they’ve been discovered?

You send in the Outriders. Continue reading “Outriders – Jay Posey”

Battlefront: Twilight Company – Alexander Freed

“He would die with a grin & a battle cry.”

Alexander Freed is quickly becoming one of my favorite Star Wars writers. Not surprising really, considering he used to work at BioWare on probably my favorite gaming franchise of all time, Mass Effect! He is a great fit within the Star Wars universe.

Battlefront: Twilight Company was inspired by the video game, Star Wars Battlefront. It is about the war between the Empire & the Rebellion, while focusing on the Sixty-first Mobile Infantry. This is better known as the Twilight Company. It’s rare that we get to see so closely into the grim war side of the Rebellion, especially with the prior Legends novels. Canon really is about expanding & diversifying the universe, which is a fucking righteous thing for me to see happen as a long time fan.

Twilight Company allows the reader to viscerally experience what it is like on the battlefield. It is described as being Band of Brothers, set in the Star Wars universe. Which ticks so many boxes for me, personally! I really enjoyed this interstellar adventure. It was a fast-paced, gripping, realistic, gritty read. There are even a few brief encounters from some recognizable faces, which is always fun for us nerds!

There were a few questionable things that happened towards the end of the book, which I didn’t think flowed with the rest of the story. But it hurtles towards a worthy conclusion.

I have read close to 60 Star Wars novels & besides Lost Stars, another fantastic canon tale, this is the only other one that I can think of that focuses so deeply on the militarization of Star Wars. It shows a more realistic side to both the Rebel Alliance & the Empire. A grittier side to the Rebellion, comprised with many soldiers that had nowhere else to go & where not all of the Empire were horrific monsters.

I hope this will open up the door for more military-themed Star Wars books. The possibilities are endless when it comes to this ever immersive galaxy far, far away!

~Holly

Rebel Rising – Beth Revis

Synopsis: When Jyn Erso was five years old, her mother was murdered and her father taken from her to serve the Empire. But despite the loss of her parents she is not completely alone—Saw Gerrera, a man willing to go to any extremes necessary in order to resist Imperial tyranny, takes her in as his own, and gives her not only a home but all the abilities and resources she needs to become a rebel herself.

Jyn dedicates herself to the cause—and the man. But fighting alongside Saw and his people brings with it danger and the question of just how far Jyn is willing to go as one of Saw’s soldiers. When she faces an unthinkable betrayal that shatters her world, Jyn will have to pull the pieces of herself back together and figure out what she truly believes in…and who she can really trust. Continue reading “Rebel Rising – Beth Revis”