Library Haul

Monday, October 04, 2010

Rhyannon Bird's: Last Wolf Standing

That a woman who was his perfect match even existed. And that he'd find her in a bustling cafe. Yet just the scent of sweet, mortal Torrance Watson ignited a driving, explosive need to claim her that he knew his pack would never sanction. Worse, the rogue werewolf he'd been hunting had sensed that attraction and made Torry his prey. Forced to safeguard her from this ruthless assassin, who already posed a threat to his pack, Mason now faced the ultimate challenge. Did he have the courage to cross the line by sealing the blood bond that would make Torry his alone--a disloyalty few of his kind ever survived--or would he live an eternity without love?

Gord Rollo's: Strange Magic

A reclusive former magician moves to Pennsylvania to escape a dark past, a past which is about to catch up with him inthe form of a mysterious stranger and a battered old trunk containing a grotesque and deadly monstrosity.

That's a pretty scant synopsis, so I'll use an excerpt from the first review posted on Amazon:

Gord Rollo's latest release, Strange Magic, tells the story of former magician Wilson Kemp. Wilson has been trying for years to escape his past, going as far as changing his name, moving, and giving up his career as a magician. His wife and daughter know nothing of his past life, but unfortunately, his past has finally caught up with him and he may not be able to keep it hidden any longer. Someone in town known as "the Stranger" is killing both humans and animals, leaving messages at the scene of each crime for "The Iceman", which happens to be Wilson's old stage name. Wilson is now scared for the life of himself and his family. He is not sure who "the Stranger" really is, but fears it may be his old partner, "The Heatseeker". The problem with that scenario is that "The Heatseeker" has been dead for twenty-two years.

MASKED anthology (various authors)

Anders (Fast Forward) delivers an ambitious collection of superhero tales that provide top-notch plots and characterizations while honoring their four-color roots. In Daryl Gregory's superbly metafictional "Message from the Bubble Gum Factory," a former sidekick finally realizes the broader implications of superheroes. Stephen Baxter nicely applies hard science to the futuristic "Vacuum Lad." Gail Simone's "Thug" and Mike Carey's "The Non-Event" bolster predictable plots with solid characters and prose. Joseph Mallozzi's "Downfall" and Marjorie M. Liu's "Call Her Savage" embrace comics clicheÌüs and make them both more complex and more entertaining. Only Mike Baron's dull, heavy-handed, and predictable "Avatar" stands out as noticeably weak, though Peter and Kathleen David's witty "Head Cases" feels more like the opening of a novel than a complete story. Overall, Anders has assembled a solid anthology that provides first-rate entertainment.

Robert Antoni's: My Grandmother's Erotic Tales (ed: how could I resist that title? *g*)

The title implies that Antoni ...has written a collection of folktales. Yet while the Caribbean tales told by 97-year-old grandmother Maria Rosa to her grandson Johnny do indeed form the framework, this is a work of fiction set in the West Indies during World War II. It begins when British officials commandeer Maria Rosa's family cocoa plantation for an American army base, telling her that she will be paid for the land when the war ends. With the invasion of U.S. servicemen comes the usual company of prostitutes and attendant lowlifes. Grandmother Maria tells her story of growing up against this background, mixing local color and folktales definitely earthy and often erotic with events of the time.

Kathleen Duey's: Skin Hunger (YA)

In this darkly atmospheric fantasy, the first in a planned trilogy called A Resurrection of Magic, Duey weaves together the stories of two teens who live in a world in which the working of magic has a turbulent history. When her bitter father dies, Sadima, a young woman who can communicate with animals, keeps house for two renegade magicians at a time when magic has been outlawed. Her experiences, which include learning to read and falling in love, alternate with those of Hahp, born generations after Sadima. Exiled by his wealthy, disapproving father, he attends a school of wizardry where, among other unpleasantness, students are starved to death if they can't conjure up food. The pacing in this page-turner accelerates as the stories progress and links between them emerge, moving toward a cliffhanger ending that will leave readers anxious for future installments.

Mark Billingham's: Lifeless

When a serial killer targets London street people in British author Billingham's
gritty fifth police procedural to feature detective Tom Thorne (after 2005's Burning Girl), Thorne, a psychological wreck following his father's death, convinces his bosses to let him go undercover. The detective manages to integrate himself into the community of the down-and-outers, even as a leak threatens to expose his ploy and place him in harm's way. An unusual tattoo on one of the victims leads the police to a squad of soldiers who may have been involved in atrocities during the first Gulf War-and to a possible motive for the killings.
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Magdalen said...

The Gord Rollo book looked fun. I *should* have checked to see if my library has it, but I strongly doubt that it would (despite the Pennsylvania connection).

I envy people like you with wonderful municipal libraries! But then I remember how small my property taxes are, and I let myself buy more books! :-)

(I have ordered Rollo's book from PaperBackSwap.)

I notice that you previously got Mercedes Lackey's Gates of Sleep out of the library. Did you like it? Have you read her 500 Lands stories? They are personal favorites, although I'm enjoying the Elemental Masters series as well.

vanessa jaye said...

Hi Magdalen,

We'll have to compare notes on the Rollo book. I did pick it up to read the other night,then decided reading horror last thing before I went to bed wouldn't be too smart. :-P

I just finished Skin Hunger and loved it to bits. Even went out to buy my own copy and the second in the series. (Yeah, that's me recommending it to you. lol).

And thanks for remainding me about the ML book. I tried it at the time, but wasn't in the right mood and put it aside. of course had to bring it back to the library before the right mood struck, but I would like to read it. Must keep an eye out at the bookstore.

Happy Reading!

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