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Archive for '7.5/10'

Steam & Sorcery

Steam & Sorcery (2011) Cindy Spencer Pape (Gaslight Chronicles) Set in London in 1851 Sir Merrick Hadrian is a Knight of the Order of the Round Table–a secret organization going back to the days of King Arthur, tasked with keeping England safe from supernatural threats. Miss Caroline Bristol has been working as a governess since […]

Short Stories: KJ Charles

Short Stories: KJ Charles “Five for Heaven” (2019) A Charm of Magpies 3.5 Set in Nagasaki, three years after A Flight of Magpies (15 pages) “A Confidential Problem” (2016) Society of Gentleman 2.5 Set in England in 1820 (14 pages) “A Private Miscellany” (2016) Society of Gentlemen 3.5 Set in London & Berlin in 1821 […]

Scenes from the Holidays

Scenes from the Holidays (2021) K.D. Edwards (Tarot Sequence) “The Playground” (7 pages) “The Sanctum” (7 pages) “The Ghost” (10 pages) “The Principality Ciaran” (13 pages) “The Tree” (7 pages) “The Dinner” (20 pages) “The Equinox” (13 pages) Scenes from the Holidays consists of short Tarot Sequence vignettes, released serially beginning in December 12, 2020, […]

The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal

The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal (2013) KJ Charles Set in England 1894 to 1914 He was covered in writing. It was scrawled in black and red ink, from wrist to shoulder of both muscular arms, across his broad, powerful shoulders and chest. None of it was in a language I recognised, or could read, […]

Wyrd Sisters

Wyrd Sisters (1988) Terry Pratchett (Discworld) witches don’t go in much for the structured approach to career progression. “No one would come up here this time of night.” Magrat peered around timidly. Here and there on the moor were huge standing stones, their origins lost in time, which were said to lead mobile and private […]

Equal Rites

Equal Rites (1987) Terry Pratchett (Discworld) “So you’re going to sort of die?” “Oh yes.” The cat purred as the fingers tickled it behind the ear. The smith looked embarrassed. “When?” The wizard thought for a moment. “In about six minutes’ time.” “Oh.” “Don’t worry,” said the wizard. “I’m quite looking forward to it, to […]

Arctic Heat

Arctic Heat (2019) Annabeth Albert (Frozen Hearts) Owen took “married to the job” to mean “closeted as hell” I’ll be waiting. The period made Quill’s text seem even more ominous in response to Owen’s message about his arrival time. “You’re pissed at me, but you’re giving me food?” Quill struggled to keep up with Owen’s […]

All the World’s an Undead Stage

All the World’s an Undead Stage (2018) Angel Martinez (Offbeat Crimes) “Best stay elevated,” Carrington murmured when Tim climbed out of his house to stare at him. How Tim managed to look surprised when he had no facial features was one of the mysteries of the universe. “We decided to call it a zorpse,” Kyle […]

Skim Blood and Savage Verse

Skim Blood and Savage Verse (2017) Angel Martinez (Offbeat Crimes) How could he have even thought about not celebrating his thirty-fifth birthday? Especially if it meant it gave her an excuse to invite all the old money and local officials to the affair. And outside? Of course it had to be outside. The weather in […]

The Pill Bugs of Time

The Pill Bugs of Time (2016) Angel Martinez (Offbeat Crimes) “Should get an Odo bucket,” Vikash murmured. “A what?” Kyle chuckled into his coffee. “Seriously, Carr? You never watched Deep Space Nine?”” It was the first time Vikash had experienced Greg’s particular talent being useful. He heard emotions, but only negative ones and only avian […]

Damaged Goods

Damaged Goods (2018) Talia Hibbert (Ravenswood) The worst thing about Samir’s parents— worse than the cruelty, the manipulation, the toxicity— was the fact that Samir had loved them. She was pregnant, and pregnant people were like the Pope, right? You had to treat them with total respect, even in your own head, just in case […]

Not So Cookie Cutter

Not So Cookie Cutter (2019) Aidan Wayne He clasped his hands behind his back, at-ease stance so he wouldn’t cross his arms. He’d been told enough times that it made him look like a thug, so he tried to avoid doing it. He tended to hyper focus when it came to certain subjects, and to […]

Bad for the Boss

Bad for the Boss (2017) Talia Hibbert He turned to his right and found a group of sober-ish women. “Excuse me; I don’t know this girl, but I think someone needs to look after her.” The women blinked at him, then at the girl, and then, as though choreographed, they smiled all at once. “Hey, […]

Mystery at the Masquerade

Mystery at the Masquerade (2021) Josh Lanyon (Secrets and Scrabble) The third book in the Secrets and Scrabble series finds Ellery back to “just friends” with Jack Carter, the sheriff. Luckily he has plenty to keep him busy. Like his book store. Ellery set about opening the shop for the day. Or, in other words, […]

Soulless

Soulless (2009) Gail Carriger (Parasol Protectorate) Set in alternate London in Queen Victoria’s reign. Supernatural creatures, especially vampires and werewolves, are influential members of British society, although in the united states they are seen as monsters to barely tolerated, of not outright destroyed. Supernatural creatures, be they vampires, werewolves, or ghosts, owed their existence to […]

Candy Hearts

Candy Hearts (2000) Erin McLellan (So Over the Holidays) If you’re read this blog for more than a handful of months, you know that casual sex doesn’t work for my in stories. It’s a me thing, and I’m ok with that. But I’ve been struggling, and needed something that was over-the-top sweet, and remembered this […]

An Edible History of Humanity

An Edible History of Humanity (2009) Tom Standage Forever ago I read a History of the World in 6 Glasses, and found it interesting, so I picked up this, let it languish for awhile, and then finally decided to settle down and read it. I found many of the historical bits interesting. It is only […]

A Midnight Clear

A Midnight Clear (2020) Kaje Harper This was another pleasant surprise. This was another book from the Winter Wonderland giveaway of holiday stories, and after the first story I read, I didn’t have the highest expectations for the rest of the books. But this one was also quite good. Adric and Royce are roommates studying […]

A Lady’s Guide to Etiquette and Murder

A Lady’s Guide to Etiquette and Murder (2018) Dianne Freeman (A Countess of Harleigh Mystery) Set in England in 1899 Frances Wynn, Countess of Harleigh, is finally done with her mourning and is more than ready to move on with her life. When her husband died a year ago, he managed to be an even […]

A Pattern of Lies

A Pattern of Lies (2015) Charles Todd (Bess Crawford) Set in England and France in 1918. Stuck in Canterbury waiting for a transport train to take her to London, Bess meets a soldier she had helped nurse back to health. Invited to spend the night with his family when the train is further delayed, she […]

Tales: Short Stories Featuring Ian Rutledge and Bess Crawford

Tales: Short Stories Featuring Ian Rutledge and Bess Crawford (2015) Charles Todd This collection is four short stories with Bess Crawford and Ian Rutledge. “The Kidnapping” “The Girl on the Beach” “Cold Comfort” “The Maharani’s Pearls” “The Kidnapping” – Ian Rutledge, London 1920 I actually have a copy of this short story, but it had […]

Kitty’s Mix-Tape

Kitty’s Mix-Tape (2020) Carrie Vaughn “Kitty Walks On By, Calls Your Name” (2020) “It’s Still the Same Old Story” (2011) Down These Strange Streets “The Island of Beasts” (2018) Nightmare, December 2018. “The Beaux Wilde” (2014) Urban Fantasy Magazine, December 2014. “Unternehmen Werwolf” (2013) Halloween: Magic, Mystery, and the Macabre “Kitty and the Full Super […]

The Affair of the Mysterious Letter

The Affair of the Mysterious Letter (2019) Alexis Hall Captain John Wyndham has returned to the city of Khelathra-Ven after five years of war. He needs rooms, but anything nice is beyond what he can afford–until he sees a posting. Co-tenant required. Rent reasonable to the point of arousing suspicion. Tolerance for blasphemies against nature […]

His Mossy Boy

His Mossy Boy (2017) R. Cooper (Beings in Love) This story has problems, most of which are editing related. But I was also unable to put it down. Martin Dyer is a mess. He drinks too much and smokes too much weed in an attempt to escape from his brain and the pressure his mother […]

Three Stupid Weddings

Three Stupid Weddings (2018) Ann Gallagher The world is terrible. I wanted something cute to re-read, without any boinking. This fit the bill. Please note that one character is trying to deal with an eating disorder that developed from emotional abuse from his ex-boyfriend, but it’s not heavy. the “you need to gain weight” crowd […]

The Case of the Damaged Detective

The Case of the Damaged Detective (2020) Drew Hayes (5-Minute Sherlock) The man was found naked, dancing, in a warehouse full of corpses. The government has him, but there are other people who very badly want to get their hands on his brain. So to move him across the country, they give the job to […]

The Pursuit Of…

The Pursuit Of… (2018) Courtney Milan Set in the United States in 1781 – 1784 At Yorktown John Hunter almost kills a British soldier–but instead ends up giving him his coat so he can escape. When told he’d repay the kindness, John things nothing of it. People say lots of things, and they almost never […]

The Enforcer Enigma

The Enforcer Enigma (2020) G. L. Carriger (San Andreas Shifters) When Colin’s brother returned from college, to find him completely withdrawn, Kevin decided they would both join the new pack moving out to San Francisco where Colin could be himself without fear of retribution. Judd has been a werewolf since before the Saturation. He may […]

Murder in the East End

Murder in the East End (2020) Jennifer Ashley (Kat Holloway) Set in London in 1882 Daniel has once again come to Kat Holloway seeing assistance in dealing with a problem–in this case a woman and several children are missing from a foundling house, and Daniel’s brother (of a sort) came to him for assistance. “Daniel […]

The Omega Objection

The Omega Objection (2018) G. L. Carriger (San Andreas Shifters) Tank came east with the rest of what eventually eventually came to be the San Andreas Pack. Although he’s big enough to be an enforcer, he’s truly submissive and doesn’t like to fight, even if he does a lot of work as security. Isaac has […]

A Wizard’s Guide To Defensive Baking

A Wizard’s Guide To Defensive Baking (2020) T. Kingfisher Mona isn’t an impressive wizard. Her power is is with baked goods, which is very specific, and (as far as she can tell) not much good unless you’re a baker. Which she is. But someone is killing wizards, and it seems like Mona isn’t quite as […]

The Sugared Game

The Sugared Game (2020) K.J. Charles (The Will Darling Adventures) Set in London in 1924. Will Darling has settled in as proprietor of the bookstore he inherited from his uncle. He’s cleaned out the upstairs so he has room to sleep, and is slowly organizing the books. Unfortunately, all that is not keeping his mind […]

Taxes and TARDIS

Taxes and TARDIS (2012) N.R. Walker Brent Kelly and his shoe-box of receipts are about to meet his new accountant. But Logan Willis isn’t old, but is instead Brent’s age, and wearing a startlingly blue shirt. Logan is nothing like the kind of guy Brent usually likes, but then Brent generally doesn’t see the same […]

The Fifth Elephant

The Fifth Elephant (1999) Terry Pratchett (Discworld) A new Low King is about to be coronated in Uberwald, and for some reason, Vetinari has decided to send Vimes (the Duke of Ankh-Morpork) to the coronation. “Let me see if I’ve got this right,” said Vimes. “Uberwald is like this big suet pudding that everyone’s suddenly […]

Jingo

Jingo (1997) Terry Pratchett (Discworld) An island has arisen from the sea–and island that is claimed by both Klatch and Ankh-Morpork. As every student of exploration knows, the prize goes not to the explorer who first sets foot upon the virgin soil but to the one who gets that foot home first. If it is […]