Spectered Isle by K.J. Charles
Let’s speed past the fact that I’ve been on a 1.5 year hiatus from blogging and have fallen out of writing for fun or even reading and let’s get right to the review: This is the first in KJ Charles’ newest series Green Men; it’s a historical horror-fantasy romance set in interwar England, roughly connected to her book Simon Feximal. This first book is about a disgraced archaeologist (+1) and an upper-crust sarcastic fucker (+1), with a mysterious evil entity and malignant government forces providing much of the antagonism. I really like the fantasy setting, particularly as it incorporates the older, scarier British paranormal elements of a similar kind to…
There Will Be Phlogston, vN, The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal
Desperately trying to play catch-up, as always! Here’s three tiny reviews of books I’ve read several months ago. There Will Be Phlogston – Alexis Hall I hated Byron Kae’s sister in previous books because she made her sibling’s life very unhappy, but it turns out she’s more complex than just “horrible bully.” She wants to escape her terrible parents! She feels stifled by society and its expectations! She wants to find love! And she finds it, alongside a super repressed gay guy and their boyfriend. Surprise! It’s a threesome! And way more complicated than that, of course, because Alexis Hall does nothing simple in his books. Anyway, I loved it.…
Necropolis by Jordan L. Hawk
This was a VERY exciting book! Not only because of the body horror human-animal hybrid situation, but because Whyborne and the gang get out of the country and head over to Egypt! Where it turns out Dr. Christine has a Secret Boyfriend! And there are, like, curses or something! It’s a little predictable in that I guessed at least two important plot points before they happened, but it was also super fun to read. Honestly, it reminded me of all the best parts of The Mummy, only with more than one female protagonist. Dr. Christine is there, of course, and she is forever my favorite of the series. She’s dealing…
In Discretion by Reesa Herberth
This is a short little scifi horror/romance story about two ex-lovers who meet again on a space station while on the run from angry zombies, assassins, and their own unresolved issues (it wasn’t a happy break-up). I really liked this! I wish it was longer, as I didn’t entirely understand the background conspiracy plot which lead to the zombie outbreak. A little more room for worldbuilding would’ve made it more emotionally satisfying when the conspiracy came to light. As it was, I mostly didn’t care since it was barely there. And the characters, Kazra and Thanson, really stole the whole show. They’re childhood sweethearts who broke up in a bad…
Stormhaven by Jordan L. Hawk
All the wonderful things from the first two Whyborne & Griffin books are present in this third one, plus more. Action, adventure, romance! Spooky monsters! Stormhaven has a heavy Lovecraft influence, this time in a “dweller of the deep” kind of thing. Gods being summoned from the depths of the sea, (more) secret magic cults, insanity and possession all have a big part in the story; it’s super spooky and made me think of dark stormy nights the whole time. Wonderful atmospheric writing, as always! Not only is it another terrific blend of mystery, horror and romance, it doesn’t rest on its laurels re:its characters. My favorite thing about series…
The Bone Key by Sarah Monette
So apparently I have a thing for books about repressed introverts who’re plagued by the paranormal when they’re not working in a museum. I’m not really surprised. It combines my love of books, antiques, mysteries and the paranormal, plus there’s a character with the potential for some sort of clam situation if they have a cute enough sidekick. (Spoiler: Kyle doesn’t have a sidekick (or friends). He also doesn’t go anywhere in a character development sort of way. It’s the only downside to an otherwise wonderful book.) Sarah Monette is the lady who wrote The Goblin King (as Katherine Addison), one of my favorite books from 2014! This is the…
Threshold by Jordan L. Hawk (2013)
This is the second book in the Whyborne & Griffin series and it is much like the first: wonderful plot, great characters, iffy sex scenes[1. more unfortunate word choices ruining otherwise okay sexytimes, although at least each sex scene involves important character/plot development things. I hate when you can cut out sexytimes entirely and lose nothing from the book; what’s the point of having them if they don’t DO anything?] and fun historical paranormal mysteries. Well, not FUN. More like terrifying.
Liberty and Other Stories by Alexis Hall
After falling in love with the world and characters of Prosperity, I jumped on the chance to read this collection of short stories/novellas. There are both prequel and sequel stories, both origin stories and what-happened-afterwards. All the characters from Prosperity showed up again AND there were some fun new ones!