My Bookish Ways

Book News (and other fun stuff): November 30th, 2012

Here’s my roundup of book news (and other fun stuff) around the web for the week! Sometimes I add stuff throughout the day on Friday, so be sure you check back over the weekend too!

Also, don’t miss my list of gift ideas for book lovers at the bottom of the post. I’ll try to offer up new ideas every week until the end of December.

Interviews, news, and more:

Excerpts and such:

Fun stuff (some book-related, some not):

Gift Ideas for Book Lovers!!

Interview: Cecy Robson, author of Sealed With a Curse

I reviewed Cecy Robson’s debut urban fantasy Sealed With a Curse, and her Weird Girls novella, recently and absolutely loved them! You can get your hands on a copy on Dec. 31st, but in the meantime, Cecy was kind enough to chat with me about the book and her writing!

Please welcome Cecy to the blog!

Your first book, the awesome Sealed With a Curse, comes out in December. What made you finally take the plunge and write a novel?
On September 26, 2008, I was flying back East to attend my 15th college reunion. I picked up a book to read on the plane. That book was CRY WOLF by Patricia Briggs. I’d never heard of Urban Fantasy, but I immediately fell in love with the genre—and couldn’t get enough of it! Over the next few months, I read about thirty-six Urban Fantasies and Paranormal Romances. On May 1, 2009, I decided to try write my own series. That first novel I wrote eventually evolved into SEALED WITH A CURSE.

Your day job as a nurse must keep you very busy! How did you find the time to write?
Writing actually serves as a stress reliever and type of therapy. I make time to write because it feels great and helps me work out my frustrations. Nursing is a very honorable profession and I’m proud to be one. Unfortunately we face potential life and death issues every time we punch in to work.

What are some of the biggest influences in your writing (authors, books, etc.)?
Hmmm . . . where do I begin? I love JK Rowling’s world building—Harry Potter is one of greatest works of literary fiction ever created. When it comes to memorable characters, no one can torture a hero like Jim Butcher and have us laughing in the very next line. Patricia Briggs writes with a mixture of beauty and darkness, that leaves her readers begging for more.

What are you reading right now?
Lea Nolan’s CONJURE. It’s a MG / YA novel that I’m thoroughly enjoying and one of those few books I can share with my daughter.

If you could read one book again for the very first time, which one would it be?
Kate SeRine’s RED. Such a brilliant and creative story!

If you had to cast Sealed With a Curse for the movies, who would you pick to play the sisters, Misha, and Aric?
Heh, heh, heh. I actually created my dream cast months ago:
Celia—Emmy Rossum
Taran—Emmanuelle Chriqui
Shayna—Alexis Bledel
Emme—Meaghen Jette Martin
Aric—Alex Pettyfer
Misha—Taylor Kitsch

When you manage to find some free time, how do you like to spend it?
Those few moments I have I like to spend reading or with my family.

What’s next for you?
I’m working on a proposal for my OLD ERTH series, a high fantasy category romance which I’m really excited about. Here’s to hoping readers will embrace it along with my WEIRD GIRLS series!
Keep up with Cecy: Website | Twitter
Pre-Order Sealed With a Curse: Amazon | B&N | Indiebound

About Sealed With a Curse:
Celia Wird and her three sisters are just like other 20-something girls—with one tiny exception: they’re products of a backfired curse that has given each of them unique powers that make them, well, weird…

The Wird sisters are content to avoid the local vampires, werebeasts, and witches of the Lake Tahoe region—until one of them blows up a vampire in self-defense. Everyone knows vampires aren’t aggressive, and killing one is punishable by death. But soon more bloodlust-fueled attacks occur, and the community wonders: are the vampires of Tahoe cursed with a plague?

Celia reluctantly agrees to help Misha, the handsome leader of an infected vampire family. But Aric, the head of the werewolf pack determined to destroy Misha’s family to keep the region safe, warns Celia to stay out of the fight. Caught between two hot alphas, Celia must find a way to please everyone, save everyone, and oh yeah, not lose her heart to the wrong guy—or die a miserable death. Because now that the evil behind the plague knows who Celia is, it’s coming for her and her sisters. This Wird girl has never had it so tough.

Catching up with Cassie Alexander, author of Moonshifted

I adored Cassie Alexander’s first book Nightshifted, featuring nurse to supernatural oddities, Edie Spence, and am anxious to dive into Moonshifted, but first, I caught up a little bit with Cassie, so please welcome her back to the blog!

Welcome back to the blog, Cassie!
I’m very pleased to be back! :D

I can’t believe Moonshifted is already out!
Haha, me either. I’m a little panicked about it, in fact. This year has gone by so fast!

Can you give us a teaser as to what Edie is up to in this book?
Ostensibly Moonshifted is about Edie’s interactions with the local werewolf pack as they deal with a violent change in leadership – but on the larger scale, it’s about how she’s going to manage being the only human around tempestuous supernatural creatures and still get out alive, while somehow managing to protect the people (and vampires and weres and shapeshifters) she holds dear.

And if she thought last book was rough, well, the events of Nightshifted look like a cakewalk compared to this one.

I imagine it’s been a bit of a whirlwind since Nightshifted came out! What’s been one of your favorite parts of this whole “published author awesomeness” thing?
This’ll sound lame, but it’s still the fact that people are reading my books…because I pretty much convince myself that readers don’t exist while I’m working. I know it sounds silly, but to give my brain the space it needs to write terrible, awful, rough drafty things with no pressure, I have to pretend that no one is ever going to see them but me (and Daniel, my alpha reader, but he’s very used to making sense of my nonsense.) And since I’ve been working this whole year, I’ve been pretending that readers don’t exist really hard. It’s a Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal thing — any Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy/ Infocom people in the house? – if I can’t see you, then you all can’t see me, and my 1st draft full of “tk put something cooler in here” notes.

So when I get fanmail, it’s sort of a new experience each time. It’s awesome for a millisecond – the favorite part — but then it almost feels dirty, like I’ve been caught trying to make a living at this writing thing, and who do I think I am? Especially when I know I’m totally screwing over myself in the future with all of my “tk fix this sentiment” and “tk why did they do this again?” notes.

The easiest solution is to write a nice note back, and then to quickly stick my head back in the sand until I can convince myself it didn’t happen…only to be resurprised anew when it does again.
(I didn’t say this was a great plan or anything. It’s just how I’m managing, barely, to cope, ha.)

2012 has been quite a year for you! Do you have any New Year’s Resolutions? Are you planning anything special to usher in 2013?
I don’t really make resolutions – I’m already living a pretty lean life, working two jobs doesn’t leave me with any time for vices, alas, and my back injuries won’t let me not go to the gym :P. I will be going to an excellent New Years Eve party with all of my friends though, which’ll be great – I’m working Thanksgiving and Christmas at work, so I can have it off, it’s an important social holiday for me :D.

Read any good books lately?
I’ve been finishing up Seanan Mcguire’s October Daye series – I’m halfway through One Salt Sea now. I read An Artificial Night and Late Eclipses while I was deployed with the Red Cross for two weeks doing nursing at a shelter for Hurricane Sandy victims. I’m so sad that I’m caught up with the books so far!

What’s next for you and Edie?
After Moonshifted, Shapeshifted comes out next summer, and St. Martin’s bought the next two books in my series – Deadshifted, and Bloodshifted. Deadshifted’s due 1/15, so I’ll probably spend from now through the end of the year hustling pretty hard.

I think people will continue to be surprised by the turns and twists in store for Edie. I don’t want to give anything away, but I don’t coddle or protect characters, I don’t hold back, it’s all no holds barred. And I love love love escalation. If you liked Nightshifted or Moonshifted, and like being surprised by things that are gritty,realistic, and occasionally insane…then the upcoming books will be completely up your alley.
Thanks so much Kristin! :D

Keep up with Cassie: Website | Twitter | Goodreads

About MOONSHIFTED:
After surviving a brutal vampire attack, Nurse Edie Spence is ready to get back to work—attending to supernatural creatures in need of medical help. But her nursing skills are put to the test when she witnesses a hit-and-run on her lunch break. The injured pedestrian is not only a werewolf, he’s the pack leader. And now Edie’s stuck in the middle of an all-out were-war…
With two rival packs fighting tooth and nail, Edie has no intention of crossing enemy lines. But when she meets her patient’s nephew—a tattooed werewolf named Lucas with a predatory gleam in his eye that’s hard to resist—Edie can’t help but choose sides. The question is: can she trust this dangerous new ally? And can she trust her own instincts when she’s near him? Either way, Edie can’t seem to pull away—even if getting involved makes her easy prey…

Release Day Giveaway: Cold City (Repairman Jack Prequel #1) by F. Paul Wilson

Cold City, the first of a series of Repairman Jack prequel novels from F. Paul Wilson is out today, and the lovely folks at Tor were kind enough to offer a copy for giveaway, so please check out the book and the details (US/Canada), and good luck!

About Cold City:
The first of three Repairman Jack prequels, revealing the past of one of the most popular characters in contemporary dark fantasy: a self-styled “fix-it” man who is no stranger to the macabre or the supernatural, hired by victimized people who have no one else to turn to.

We join Jack a few months after his arrival in New York City. He doesn’t own a gun yet, though he’s already connected with Abe. Soon he’ll meet Julio and the Mikulski brothers. He runs afoul of some Dominicans, winds up at the East Side Marriott the night Meir Kahane is shot, gets on the bad side of some Arabs, starts a hot affair, and disrupts the smuggling of preteen sex slaves. And that’s just Book One.

***GIVEAWAY DETAILS***
1. You MUST fill out the form below
2. Giveaway is for 1 copy of Cold City by F. Paul Wilson to to 1 winner.
3. Giveaway is open to US and Canadian addresses only
4. Must include a valid email address with your entry (no need to leave it in the comments, just include it when you fill out the rafflecopter form)
5. You must enter on or before 12/5/12
6. Giveaway book courtesy of Tor
7. Please see my Giveaway Policy.

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Interview: DD Barant, author of Undead to the World

DD Barant is the author of the The Bloodhound Files, which wraps up with Undead to the World (out today!) and also writes sci-fi and thrillers under other names. He was kind enough to answer a few questions about Undead to the World and other projects.

Your final Bloodhound Files novel, Undead to the World, is out this month! Was it bittersweet wrapping up the series?
It was. I love those characters. Jace’s voice is one that comes naturally to me, and Charlie—everyone’s favorite—is one of mine, too.

Will we see more of Jace or the world of the Bloodhound Files?
I hope so. I’d like to return to that fictional world someday; I have a bunch of ideas that I never got around to exploring. Like golem drugs, for instance, or what happened when Jace finally tracked down the Midnight Sword and sent it back in time to herself.

When you were growing up, did you always see yourself as a writer? Will you tell us a bit about your journey?
Strangely enough, I did. I had this image in my head from a very early age that writing a book was like putting a spool of film on a projector in your head and playing a movie, and all you had to do was watch the screen and write down what you saw. It’s proven pretty accurate, actually.

Though I knew from very early on I was going to be a writer, it wasn’t until I was around twenty-four that I decided, “Okay, time to get serious.” That was when I established a writing routine, and really put some dedication into it. I got lucky in that an established novelist read one of my very first short stories and told me, “This isn’t a short story. This is a novel. And if you write it, I’ll help you sell it.” He did, and it did, and I never looked back. I’ve had some lean years over the course of my career, but I never gave up.

What are some of your favorite authors or novels?
When I was younger, I read a lot of science fiction and mysteries: Heinlein, Asimov, Bradbury, Agatha Christie, anything I could get my hands on, really. These days I like Spider Robinson, John Varley, Lee Child, John D. McDonald, Charlie Stross, Joe Hill, Stephen King, Peter Straub, Dan Simmons, Neil Gaiman, John Connolly, and a bunch of comic book writers: Alan Moore, Gail Simone, Warren Ellis, Kurt Busiek, Matt Fraction, Fred Van Lente, many others. I also follow certain writers in TV and film, like Aaron Sorkin or Stephan Moffat.

If you could read one book again for the very first time, which one would it be?
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Because the jokes would all be fresh and new, and the conceptual stuff just as brilliant.

What are you reading now?
In the middle of Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel.

When you manage to find some free time, how do you like to spend it?
I’m not averse to the occasional alcoholic beverage. Imbibed in the company of people who appreciate my sense of humor and are not repelled by my incessant babbling and abrupt changes of subject. Also, I like fighting crime. No, wait, that’s only in my head. There’s a lot of crime in my head.

What’s next for you (teasers for your next series are always welcome)?
Next is my paranormal animal detectives series (yes, you read that right) The Whiskey, Tango and Foxtrot Mysteries. It’s about a reincarnated cat and a ghost dog that team up with the Gal Friday of an eccentric billionaire who lives next to an animal graveyard and has her own private zoo. It will be ridiculous, suspenseful, touching, and bizarre. You will discover that weasels have their own afterlife. You will find out that cats are exactly as sarcastic as you always suspected. You will HAVE FUN. Or I’ll send the weasels to haunt you.

The first book is called THE CASE OF THE DRUNKEN MONKEY. In it, a monkey gets drunk. Oh, and there’s some sort of murder mystery that needs to be solved, but really, the important fact is that it features an inebriated simian. I’m really hoping the cover art plays that fact up, but I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. That book’s done and I’m about to start the second, THE CASE OF THE THOUSAND POUND CAT. I’m pretty sure it features a really large cat. Other than that, I have no idea.
Keep up with DD Barant: Website | Twitter

About UNDEAD TO THE WORLD

Jace’s return to Kansas is an instant reminder that there really is no place like home. The tavern is still brimming with losers, practical jokers, and motorcycle chicks. Even the town’s only Goth is still wearing eyeliner. But just as Jace is about to click her heels and hightail out of there, she’s roped into a brand-new case. Somebody is possessed. And the bodies are piling up…

They call him the Gallowsman. According to legend, he was sentenced to hang—though his crimes still have not been specified. When he was strung up to die, his spirit stuck around waiting for people to hang themselves…so he could steal their bodies. Now, with the undead rising up and going on a rampage, Jace must put her own neck on the line. Can she get the Gallowsman to give up the ghost?

Trapped (Iron Druid Chronicles #5) by Kevin Hearne

It’s been 12 years since Atticus faked his own death and during that time, he’s been teaching Granuaile to become a full-fledged Druid. Now he just has to bind her to the earth, and she’ll be good to go. Easier said than done, right? When Perun, a thunder god, makes a rather spectacular entrance with Loki hot on his trail (literally), the gang is pretty sure something isn’t right. Loki being free is bad enough, but when Atticus and crew are summoned to Faery for an audience with Brighid, things get all kinds of worse, all kinds of quick. The beings that were supposed to think Atticus was dead now know he’s not, and Atticus fears they’ll try to make him dead for real with a quickness. Atticus thinks he can buy himself and Granuale some time, so they head to Olympus to start her binding, which takes 3 months and involves some pretty elaborate tattooing and conferring with Gaia. If you’ll recall from Tricked, Greece isn’t exactly the safest place for the gang right now, but unfortunately, it’s the only place available to them to complete the binding.

When they arrive in Olympus, it seems that they may actually be able to complete Granuaile’s binding, but during a trip to a hunting and camping supply store, they’re attacked by a murderous, and explosive, vampire and pretty much informed that a big ‘ol scary boss vamp is after Atticus. Then there’s another attack by more baddies, and finally our little group gets some relief in the form of Manannan Mac Lir and his lovely wife Fand on the diplomatic Iris plane of Mag Mell, where Oberon discovers the most wonderful bacon he’s ever eaten. Baaaaacon. But I digress. Their reprieve doesn’t last long, and there’s plenty more to come in the form of challenges! There are indeed some doozies on the horizon for our heroes, including a horde of killer clowns (seriously, like, at least enough to fill 2 VW Bugs-at least), gods of the Roman and Greek persuasion (Bacchanalia!!), and more conniving fae than you can shake a staff at. Of course, for us readers, this is awesome, because this means lots of killer fight scenes (clowns!!), and chase scenes (Clowns!! On unicycles and scooters!!), which the author always pulls off with relish, a heaping helping of awesome, and plenty of magic.

There’s certainly plenty of drama, but there’s also drama of the happy type too, like Granuaile becoming a full Druid, and finding out what her shape-shifting forms will be. I’ll also let you mull this over: Atticus has to tattoo Granuaile from her feet on up. And it takes a while. A Deliciously. Long. While. Needless to say,ahem, there will be lots of thinking about baseball (for Atticus), and you know you want to see some sparks between these two, don’ t you? Of course you do!! Just when you think this wonderful series can’t get better, it does, with each book, and you’ll definitely be panting for the next one, Hunted, out next year!

Goodreads | LibraryThing | Shelfari

How ’bout some smokin’ Kindle deals?

Lots of folks are out shopping this weekend, but you can snag some great Kindle book deals from the comfort of your own home! I’ve rounded up a few mystery/fantasy/suspense titles here, and they’re all under $5 (many are under$3)!!

The Hangman’s Daughter by Oliver Pötzsch-Magdalena, the clever and headstrong daughter of Bavarian hangman Jakob Kuisl, lives with her father outside the village walls and is destined to be married off to another hangman’s son—except that the town physician’s son is hopelessly in love with her. And her father’s wisdom and empathy are as unusual as his despised profession. It is 1659, the Thirty Years’ War has finally ended, and there hasn’t been a witchcraft mania in decades. But now, a drowning and gruesomely injured boy, tattooed with the mark of a witch, is pulled from a river and the villagers suspect the local midwife, Martha Stechlin.

Jakob Kuisl is charged with extracting a confession from her and torturing her until he gets one. Convinced she is innocent, he, Magdalena, and her would-be suitor to race against the clock to find the true killer. Approaching Walpurgisnacht, when witches are believed to dance in the forest and mate with the devil, another tattooed orphan is found dead and the town becomes frenzied. More than one person has spotted what looks like the devil—a man with a hand made only of bones. The hangman, his daughter, and the doctor’s son face a terrifying and very real enemy.

Taking us back in history to a place where autopsies were blasphemous, coffee was an exotic drink, dried toads were the recommended remedy for the plague, and the devil was as real as anything, The Hangman’s Daughter brings to cinematic life the sights, sounds, and smells of seventeenth-century Bavaria, telling the engrossing story of a compassionate hangman who will live on in readers’ imaginations long after they’ve put down the novel. $2.99

The Half-Made World by Felix Gilman-The world is still only half-made. Between the wild shores of uncreation, and the ancient lands of the East lies the vast expanse of the West—-young, chaotic, magnificent, war-torn.

Thirty years ago, the Red Republic fought to remake the West—-fought gloriously, and failed. The world that now exists has been carved out amid a war between two rival factions: the Line, enslaving the world with industry, and the Gun, a cult of terror and violence. The Republic is now history, and the last of its generals sits forgotten and nameless in a madhouse on the edge of creation. But locked in his memories is a secret that could change the West forever, and the world’s warring powers would do anything to take it from him.

Now Liv Alverhuysen, a doctor of the new science of psychology, travels west, hoping to heal the general’s shattered mind. John Creedmoor, reluctant Agent of the Gun and would-be gentleman of leisure, travels west, too, looking to steal the secret or die trying. And the servants of the Line are on the march. $2.99

Murder at the Lanterne Rouge: An Aimee Leduc Investigation (Aimee Leduc Investigations) by Cara Black-Aimée Leduc is happy her long-time business partner René has found a girlfriend. Really, she is. It’s not her fault if she can’t suppress her doubts about the relationship; René is moving way too fast, and Aimée’s instincts tell her Meizi, this supposed love of René’s life, isn’t trustworthy. And her misgivings may not be far off the mark: Meizi disappears during a Chinatown dinner to take a phone call and never comes back to the restaurant. Minutes later, the body of a young man, a science prodigy and volunteer at the nearby Musée, is found shrink-wrapped in an alleyway—with Meizi’s photo in his wallet.

Aimée does not like this scenario one bit, but she can’t figure out how the murder is connected to Meizi’s disappearance. The dead genius was sitting on a discovery that has France’s secret service keeping tabs on him. Now they’re keeping tabs on Aimée. A missing young woman, an illegal immigrant raid in progress, botched affairs of the heart, dirty policemen, the French secret service, cutting-edge science secrets and a murderer on the loose—what has she gotten herself into? And can she get herself—and her friends—back out of it all alive? $1.39

The Copper Sign by Katia Fox-England 1161: Ellen, a blacksmith’s daughter, wants to become a swordsmith, but for a girl this profession is unimaginable. Forced to run away from home, she disguises herself as a boy and wins the opportunity to travel with a famous swordsmith to Normandy, where the sons of the greatest barons are trained to be knights.

Under the assumed identity of Alan, Ellen is able to learn the trade and become familiar with court life. But when she falls in love with Guillaume, a brilliant knight, her secret is threatened and Ellen must run for her life. Across countries and time, Ellen struggles to achieve her dream of working as a swordsmith and eventually forging a sword for the king. It is a quest rich in intrigue, betrayal, and treachery. As epic as it is intimate, The Copper Sign is a passionate tour de force that will leave you breathlessly awaiting book two, The Silver Falcon. $3.00

Desert Drop (Las Vegas Mystery) by Rex Kusler-Private investigator and former homicide detective Alice James was just six months old when her father, Leon Stapper, abandoned his family. Forty years later, Alice has convinced herself she’s over it—until her half sister, Corina, calls her up and wants to meet. But before Alice and Corina can get acquainted, everything goes terribly, tragically wrong. Determined to uncover the truth behind what happened to her sister, Alice calls in reinforcements: Jim Snow, her partner in Las Vegas’s James & James Detective Agency who knows a thing or two about family drama. Their investigation takes them from Sin City to Silicon Valley, where Alice and Corina’s father reigns as a high-tech CEO. As Alice and Jim dig for clues, they find that Leon’s best friend and attorney Ron Bale took a very personal interest in Corina. Not to mention the fact that he used to be married to Leon’s ex-wife—until she vanished without a trace. Alice is convinced that if she and Jim can uncover the truth about the missing wife, they will discover what happened to Corina. But first, they will need a little help from some old friends.

Smart, sharp, and entertaining, Desert Drop is the third installment of Rex Kusler’s Las Vegas Mystery series. $3.00

Flowertown by SG Redling-Seven years ago, a chemical spill brought the U.S. Army to rural Penn County, Iowa, where soldiers established a long-term, medically maintained quarantine. Officially, it’s called the PennCo Containment Area. But to the people trapped inside, their bodies tainted with chemicals that give off a sweet smell, it’s known simply as Flowertown.

The quarantine was supposed to save their lives, but many of the survivors have grown suspicious of the government’s real motives. But not Ellie Cauley – her rage long ago burned down to hard, cynical pessimism. When a series of deadly events forces Ellie out of her apathy, she must prepare to face an enemy powerful enough to unleash her greatest nightmare. $3.00

Already Gone by John Rector-Jake Reese is a writing teacher at an American university. He lives in a small brick Tudor close to campus with his art buyer wife, Diane. His life is quiet — ordinary even. And he likes it that way. But it wasn’t always quiet. Jake’s distant past was a life on the streets, inflicting damage and suffering on more people than he can count. And now someone from his past, it seems, has come looking for him.

A raw, gripping thriller about the price paid for past sins, John Rector’s third novel is a live wire that crackles with the intensity of a man with nothing left to lose. When two men attack Jake in a parking lot and cut off his finger, he tries to dismiss it as an unlucky case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. But when events take a more sinister turn and Diane goes missing, Jake knows he can no longer hide from the truth. As he embarks on a mission to find his wife, he realizes his dark past is refusing to stay buried and that his future is about to unfold in ways he could never have imagined.

With a taut and brooding style, Rector paints a formidable portrait of a reformed man’s slow descent into a life he thought he had walked away from forever. As the intensity becomes almost unbearable, the pace quickens and the suspense applies an unrelenting, vice-like grip, as Already Gone hurtles toward its ultimate, explosive climax. $3.00

Dead Money by Ray Banks (read the review at Crime Fiction Lover)-Double-glazing salesman Alan Slater is in trouble. He hasn’t had a good sales lead in months. His wife rightly suspects him of playing around. His best mate Les Beale has turned into a bigoted, boozed-up headcase. And that’s the least of it.

When a rigged poker game has fatal consequences, Alan finds himself not only responsible for the clean-up, but also for Beale’s escalating debt to a man who won’t take “broke” for an answer.

As Beale’s life spirals out of control, he becomes ever more desperately reliant on Alan to save his skin. But Alan isn’t about to be dragged into the gutter by anyone, least of all his bad-beat, dead money former mate.

After all, there’s no such thing as a compassionate double-glazing salesman. $2.99

The Cloud Roads (The Books of the Raksura) by Martha Wells-Moon has spent his life hiding what he is — a shape-shifter able to transform himself into a winged creature of flight. An orphan with only vague memories of his own kind, Moon tries to fit in among the tribes of his river valley, with mixed success. Just as Moon is once again cast out by his adopted tribe, he discovers a shape-shifter like himself… someone who seems to know exactly what he is, who promises that Moon will be welcomed into his community. What this stranger doesn’t tell Moon is that his presence will tip the balance of power… that his extraordinary lineage is crucial to the colony’s survival… and that his people face extinction at the hands of the dreaded Fell! Now Moon must overcome a lifetime of conditioning in order to save and himself… and his newfound kin. $1.99

Stork (Stork Trilogy) by Wendy Delsol-Moving from LA to nowhere Minnesota, sixteen-year-old Katla Leblanc expected the local fashion scene to be frozen in time. What she didn’t expect was induction into the Icelandic Stork Society, an ancient order of women charged with a unique mystical duty. Not only is Katla the youngest member, but Hulda, the society’s omen-guided leader, immediately bestows the coveted Second Chair on her — a decision that ruffles a few feathers.
As if that weren’t enough, Katla also has to deal with her parents’ divorce and the social aftermath of a bad date with popular but creepy Wade. Katla, however, isn’t one to sit on her designer-jean-clad behind, and soon she’s assigned the fashion column for the school paper and making new friends.

Things would be looking up if it weren’t for editor in chief Jack. Even though they argue every time they meet, Katla is inexplicably drawn to him. Juggling her home life, school, and Stork duties, will Katla be able to unravel the mystery surrounding Jack? More importantly, will she find a dress in time for Homecoming?

Folktales collide with reality in Wendy Delsol’s debut novel, in which one girl finds herself tail-feathers deep in small-town life. $2.99

Catching up with Kevin Hearne, author of the Iron Druid Chronicles + Giveaway!

It’s always a pleasure to have Kevin Hearne on the blog and he kindly agreed to do a fun little Q&A to catch us up on what he’s been up to since Hounded stormed onto the scene. If you haven’t discovered this amazing series, you’re certainly in for a treat, and we’ve also got a copy of TRAPPED (out 11/27) for one lucky winner (and it’s SIGNED!). So, please welcome Kevin back to the blog!

Sooooo, BOOK 5!! Trapped is out next week! Are you stoked?
Heck yes! I have a cigar and a whiskey all picked out and I can’t wait for people to meet the new characters!

Will you give our readers a little teaser of what’s to come in Trapped? Will poor, overworked Atticus get a moment of peace?
Well, yeah, he got twelve years of peace—that was Granuaile’s training period! So of course I skipped all of that, heh heh. Once Atticus strays from his hideout, plenty of his old enemies want a piece of him, and that’s where we start.

But Atticus gets some new enemies as well. The best bit for me was working with the dark elves and dwarfs—giving them a magic system and a backstory that people haven’t seen before and that’s also tied (sometimes loosely) to the original Norse mythology.

It’s been an amazing couple of years for you. Not too many other authors can claim 5 books in just 2 years. Seriously. Has it been a blur?
It’s actually less than two years! 18 months if I’m counting correctly. My secret is that I actually wrote those books at a somewhat normal pace. I began HOUNDED in 2008 and didn’t finish HAMMERED until halfway through 2010, and then I started on TRICKED. Del Rey just published the first three all at once in the summer of 2011, making it appear that I write at superhuman speeds, and then TRICKED came out the next spring—so yeah, four books, three short stories, and a novella released within twelve months, and now TRAPPED is almost here. From now on my books will come out about seven to eight months apart. That’s still pretty fast but hopefully manageable.

You’ve toured, you’ve met fans and other authors. What’s been a few of your favorite highlights of, you know, publishing one of the best urban fantasy series out there right now?
Going to San Diego Comic Con the past couple of years has been absolutely fabulous because I got to meet so many of my writing heroes and fanboy all over them. Plus it was sort of a nerdy pilgrimage, you know, where the world’s geeks all congregate to worship at the altar of awesome. I also really enjoyed my little mini-tour through the south this summer, starting with Dallas and meeting you and author Jaye Wells. In Lexington I met these two teachers with the most beautiful accents from eastern Kentucky; I sincerely wish I had an audiobook of bedtime stories in that accent.

In Atlanta I had legendary barbeque and was introduced to the coolest kid ever, Maggie, who’s been cosplaying at Dragon*Con since she was five and is now reading my books at age twelve. And in the past two months I’ve gotten to hang out with a couple of my favorite writers, Nicole Peeler and Cherie Priest, so that filled up my squee gauge to full.

What’s next? How do you plan to wrap up 2012?
I’m working on edits for HUNTED right now and then I have to outline the Star Wars novel I’m writing featuring Luke Skywalker. I’m in Nerdvana I guess; I have much for which to be thankful, starting with my readers. And thank you for having me here! Cheers!
Keep up with Kevin: Website | Twitter

***GIVEAWAY DETAILS***
1. You MUST fill out the form below
2. Giveaway is for 1 SIGNED copy of Trapped (Iron Druid Chronicles #5) by Kevin Hearne to to 1 winner.
3. Giveaway is open to US addresses only
4. Must include a valid email address with your entry (no need to leave it in the comments, just include it when you fill out the rafflecopter form)
5. You must enter on or before 11/30/12
6. Giveaway book courtesy of Kevin Hearne
7. Please see my Giveaway Policy.

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Book News: November 23rd, 2012

Here’s my roundup of book news (and other fun stuff) around the web for the week! Sometimes I add stuff throughout the day on Friday, so be sure you check back over the weekend too!

Also, don’t miss my list of gift ideas for book lovers at the bottom of the post. I’ll try to offer up new ideas every week until the end of December.

Interviews, news, and more:

Excerpts and such:

Fun stuff (some book-related, some not):

Gift Ideas for Book Lovers!!

Turkey Day Giveaway: The Devil’s Diadem by Sara Douglass

It’s Turkey Day (aka Thanksgiving) here in the US, and what better way to celebrate than with plague and flames from Hell? Actually, I’ve got a gorgeous paperback copy of The Devil’s Diadem by Sara Douglass up for grabs (which has all of those things in it). So check out the book and the details, and good luck!

About The Devil’s Diadem:
Maeb Langtofte is lucky to have a position in the household of the Earl of Pengraic—one of the most powerful men in England, whose holdings rival King Edmond’s. She is lucky that his wife, Adelie, whom Maeb serves, is kind and pious (unlike the Earl, whom Maeb finds dark and secretive). But when word arrives that a plague is sweeping through Europe like a human wildfire, everyone in the Earl’s household is put on edge. It is whispered that victims of this plague are spontaneously engulfed in flames—as if the flames of Hell had suddenly leapt up to claim them and the Devil himself is to blame.

As the disease spreads into England, so too does civil unrest. King Edmond calls his lords and their armies to return to London, and the Earl obeys, leaving Maeb and his family unprotected. It turns out that the Earl has been hiding more than state secrets, and that his family is at risk of losing not only their lives but also their souls. To her horror, Maeb will learn that the Devil himself may have arrived on her doorstep. And worse, what he demands may be running through her very veins.

***GIVEAWAY DETAILS***
1. You MUST fill out the form below
2. Giveaway is for 1 copy of The Devil’s Diadem by Sara Douglass to to 1 winner.
3. Giveaway is open to US addresses only
4. Must include a valid email address with your entry (no need to leave it in the comments, just include it when you fill out the rafflecopter form)
5. You must enter on or before 11/30/12
6. Giveaway book courtesy of Harper Collins
7. Please see my Giveaway Policy.

read more

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