Honorable Mention: Emery Huang

I mentioned earlier in the blog about the L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future volumes.  I just started the latest edition, 25th.  The first story in it is by Emery Huang, called Garden of Tian Zi.  The title didn’t particularly pull me in but it was the first story so I started reading.  And I was very pleasantly surprised.  What an interesting story.  It is very sci-fi with nanotechnology, enhanced physical structure and crazy cool computers.  I’ve read quite a few stories with that type of content but the characters that were introduced were fantastically written.  The story, set in the futurist and often cold and dismal future, has life in it thanks to the incredible characters.  It was heartfelt and lovely to read.

I searched for his website but besides finding several blogs congratulating him on his winning the Grand Prize of the contest, I found little more on Emery.  My congrats go out to him and a thanks for the story as I really did enjoy it.

The Sookie Stackhouse Novels by Charlaine Harris

Earlier on my blog you’ll see when I read the first book of this series, Dead Until Dark.  I had seen the TV series TrueBlood prior to reading the book and found myself disappointed, to say the least, with the TV show.  The book is SO much better and the show didn’t even have the decency to stay with the characters and storyline but went very wayward.  It shouldn’t have.  The books themselves hold their own and have no need to be changed.

That said, my hubby recently went out-of-town on business.  Almost immediately I was hating it, missing him.  My friend had loaned me the eight books following Dead Until Dark (listed below) which I immersed myself in.

Living Dead in Dallas
Club Dead
Dead to the World
Dead as a Doornail
Definitely Dead
All Together Dead
From Dead to Worse
Dead and Gone

The  next in the series is due out in May 2010.  I will be getting a hold of that one when it comes out for sure.  There’s another book available now called A Touch of Dead which is apparently several short stories.  I understand that there are several regarding Sookie but what I don’t know is if they are all Sookie or have shorts about other things.  A friend told me it wasn’t nearly as good as the books.  I’ve requested it from the library anyway. 

 The books are AWESOME.  Charlaine creates the characters so wonderfully.  The lead, Sookie, is witty, likeable and realistic.  The vampires, werewolves, wereanimals and more are extremely entertaining and likeable or hateable depending on their purpose.   The adventures and catastrophes that Sookie deals with keep the book action packed.  It has all the great things in a novel; adventure, drama, romance, action, suspense, deceit and one of my personal favorites, otherworldly characters.

I REALLY enjoyed the series.  Those of you who have read the books will understand my next comment; my vote goes for Vampire Eric.  I just love him.  He kind of reminds me of my super studly hubby.

Anyway, if you looking for an easy, highly entertaining read, though not so easily put down, this one fits the bill.  I will comment that there are times in many of the book where it would not be suitable for young readers.  That said, go get ’em.  Their good.

Thorn Queen by Richelle Mead

This is book two of the Dark Swan novels.  I enjoyed this one more than the first.  In this book our heroine, Eugenie Markham, has quite a bit more to deal with than the last and on top of it she’s learning new powers that may or may not positively effect her judgement.  There are still quite a few sex scenes in this one but not quite as much as the last.  She’s dealing with her love of two men, Otherworld politics and much more.  I am enjoying the series, it’s non-stop action and interesting storyline and characters make it a nice read.  I am taking a forced break from the series until the next one in line comes available at the libary (not released until next year!).  Have already started the next Sookie Stackhouse novel and will report on that one soon!

Storm Born by Richelle Mead

Just finished this book this afternoon.  If you don’t mind several incidents of sultry sex scenes throughout the book, the story is really intriguing.  The story is about a woman named Eugenie Markham who is a shaman that makes a living by vanquishing various creatures from our world to the Otherworld or their death whichever is correct at the moment she’s taking them down.  She going along in life just fine, albeit lonely, only to get thrown into a ton of trouble when a handsome not-quite-human becomes her love interest, she finds out who her real dad is which in turn gives her more not-so-wanted info on who she is, gets involved with an Otherworld King and the worst,  she’s got all kinds of creatures coming after her, either for her life or to impregnate her.

It may sound pretty out there but it works.  The Otherworld characters are fun and interesting, and her character is about as real as it can get in this enjoyable urban fantasy.  Again, there is a quite a bit of sultry sex throughout so if that’s not your bag or you’re on the young side – give it a skip.  I’ve got the next book sitting on my shelf waiting to be picked up as well as a couple of the books from one of Richelle’s other series which I will fill you in on when I get there!

L. Ron Hubbard presents Writers of the Future – 25th edition

Writers of the Future – 25th edition: This book is hot off the presses and I recommend it to any aspiring sci-fi/fantasy/horror writers.  It not only shares the stories by the latest winners of their awesome contest but it also has articles by Mr. Hubbard and other successfuls on writing or illustrating.  I just picked it up last night so haven’t finished it but it’s always inspiring to me personally (I’ve read at least six of these so far).  You can pick it up at Barnes and Noble!

The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan (Book 3 in the Percy Jackson & The Olympians series)

Another great addition to the series.  This one was just as enjoyable as the first two.  They are a very fast, easy read but have non-stop action, fabulous humor and characters that you love.  I am looking forward to reading more about Percy and some of the adult books by Riordan as well…just as soon as I get throught the stack of books on my line up!

Fairy Tale Phantoms

Found a really cool website called Fairy Tale Phantoms the other day.  I recommend it for some interesting reading.  Here’s their tagline:

Do fairies, gnomes and goblins really exist? Suspend your disbelief for a moment, and consider these real-life encounters with creatures from the land of make-believe.

Check it out and enjoy!

The Lightning Thief and The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

Book One of the Percy Jackson & The Olympians series is The Lightning Thief

I saw the previews for this movie and decided to pick up the book and see what it was all about.  I thoroughly enjoyed the book.  I read it a few weeks ago, somehow missed putting it in the blog before reading several other books and then the next in the series (while I waited patiently for the second book to be available at the library).

Book Two of the Percy Jackson & The Olympians series is The Sea of Monsters

Finished this one off last night.  Very pleasant read.  This is a kids series (8, 9, 10 ages I would guess) but just as enjoyable for adults.  I started it right around dinner time two days ago and read the last couple of chapters when I was putting my daughter to bed last night.  It is not stop action and never leaves you bored with the story line.  Percy Jackson and his friends, new and old, are great characters and the story is awesome.  Started the next in the series last night too!

Mistborn: The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson

Finished this book last night while coming back from a fun weekend with friends in North Georgia.   There were elements of it that I didn’t enjoy but even with those it was well worth the read.  Without giving anything away, there were two things that made it not as enjoyable for me as the first two books but as those things came to a head and everything started coming together, it all made sense and I loved the grand finale.   It was such a nice and ‘realistic’ twist that I was happy (and tearful) at the end.  That can be really difficult to do so I am pleased that Brandon pulled it off.

Really, really enjoyed the series and am looking forward to reading more of Brandon’s books! Cheers!