Tag Archives: book review

Book Review: Summers at Castle Auburn by Sharon Shinn

ACE
339 pp.

Summers at Castle Auburn is a quiet romantic fantasy that addresses social problems, but keeps it in the background. Our heroine is a young woman named Coriel who spends summers at Castle Auburn, the royal palace. She is the bastard child of the bastard son of noble and is–pretty much without her actual awareness for most of the novel–being groomed for an advantageous or at least politically useful marriage. She has a close relationship with her half-sister, has a crush of her sister’s fiancée, and is somewhat feckless and fancy free. Fortunately, she has a strong vocation for becoming a healer and has no intention of ruining her relationship with her sister by acting on her crush. Continue reading

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Filed under fantasy, non-earth, Review: Book, Sharon Shinn

Book Review: Fledgling, by Octavia Butler

Seven Stories Press

316 pp.

Fledgling is another one of those books that took me a while to get around to reading. I was not entirely sure what to think when I first heard that Octavia Butler was going to write a vampire novel. (Let’s just say there was some metaphorical pearl-clutching and leave it at that.) I do not really like vampire novels all that much, even though I always seem to end up reading them. (Most urban fantasy novels have vamps in them. There is no escape.) Continue reading

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Filed under Octavia Butler, Review: Book, science fiction, vampires

Book Review: Hinterland by James Clemens

Roc

463 pp.

Hinterland is a slightly dull mix of adventure and political intrigue. For political reasons, the Shadowknights decide to reinstate Tylar, now the regent of Chrismferry, as a knight. This is supposed to be symbolic of the unity of the Realms. What it ends up being is an immense point of contention when the Cabal makes their move and a group of disgruntled gods decides to destroy Tashijan so they can get Tylar. (Whom they feel should not be regent because he is mortal.) Continue reading

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Filed under fantasy, James Clemens, non-earth, Review: Book

Book Review: Explorer, by C.J. Cherryh

DAW

523 pp.

In Explorer, Bren navigates between ship/station politics and making diplomatic contact with an alien presence.

Just before the ship’s arrival at the space station, he learns the full extent of the information Ramirez withheld from both his crew and the planetary governments he had been negotiating with. It turns out that the space station was attacked as a result of Ramirez completely screwing up a first contact with the aliens he encountered. (Hint: Not replying to an attempt to communicate and then zipping for home can generally be seen as a hostile action by anyone with a brain.) Continue reading

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Filed under C.J. Cherryh, distant future, Review: Book, science fiction

Book Review: Fury’s Kiss by Karen Chance

Signet Select

536 pp.

In Fury’s Kiss, Our Heroine spends a great deal of time suffering from amnesia and The Three Faces of Eve (minus one). By which I mean that she apparently has two distinct personalities, a human personality and a vampire one, who were deliberately separated by Mircea in an effort to keep Dorina somewhat sane and healthy. (There is a great deal of exposition where it is explained that when Dorina was a child she almost died because of her “vampire” half attacking her “human” half. The barrier that Mircea put between them is crumbling thanks to Dorina drinking fey wine in order to stop her occasional fits of berserk rage.  Dorina also turns out to have an untapped reservoir of psychic talent. Continue reading

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Filed under fantasy, Karen Chance, Review: Book, romance, urban, vampires

Book Review: 1635: The Papal Stakes by Eric Flint and Charles E. Gannon

Baen

654 pp.

The Papal Stakes is mostly about various attempts to rescue Frank Stone and his wife. It is also about pope Urban trying to decide whether he wants to accept the help of the USE. In addition, we have a great deal of debate on whether or not Grantville is part of some vast plot conceived by Satan. (The debate is not very interesting or exciting however.) Continue reading

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Filed under anomaly/nexus, Eric Flint, Review: Book, science fiction

Book Review: Forge of Heaven by C.J. Cherryh

EOS
405 pp.

Forge of Heaven takes place hundreds of years after the events of Hammerfall, and takes place on a space station above “Marak’s World,” a planet being “remediated” after having been bombarded from space in an effort to destroy extremely dangerous “First Movement” nanotechnology. The political and social situation in the satellite is extremely complicated, a delicate balance of three governments and two species. Our Hero is Jeremy Stafford, who prefers the name Procyon. He has a very secret, very classified job–he is one of the “taps” who communicate with the inhabitants of the planet. Specifically, he is the youngest and newest of Marak’s taps. Continue reading

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Filed under C.J. Cherryh, distant future, Review: Book, science fiction