Warm September brings the fruit

Posted On 30 September 2015

Filed under Book Reviews

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My monthly round up – what I’ve read/plan to read, any events, etc:

Books read:

  1. The Dragon Engine by Andy Remic
  2. Bitterblue
  3. Kushiel’s Chosen – readalong
  4. Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho
  5. The Traitor (Baru Cormorant) by Seth Dickinson
  6. Deadlands by Jonathan Maberry
  7. The Kingmakers by Clay and Susan Griffiths
  8. Bloodforged by Erin Lindsey
  9. Flux by Ferrett Steinmetz – review to follow
  10. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo – review to follow


Bloodbound by Erin Lindsey

Unfinished series completed:

  1. The Kingmakers by Clay and Susan Griffiths

Books Bought:

  1. The Crimson Corset by Alistair Cross
  2. Without Light or Guide (Los Nefilim part two) by T Frohock
  3. Under My Skin by Zoe Markham

Review Books:

  1. Made to Kill by Adam Christopher
  2. The Machinery by Gerrard Cowan
  3. Speak by Louisa Hall
  4. City of Wonders by James A Moore
  5. The Palace Job by Patrick Weekes
  6. The Prophecy Con by Patrick Weekes
  7. The Paladin Caper by Patrick Weekes
  8. The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu
  9. Malus Domestica by S A Hunt

Cover Spotlight:  (I love both of these)

UK or US cover:?? (UK for me with this one – not fond of the US cover tbh)


Backlist Backburn is an end of month event organised by Lisa at Tenacious Reader. If you’ve caught up on any of your backlist then call over and link up.   I find this a good incentive to dust off some of my books!  Last Month I read the Erin Lindsey book but didn’t review it in time so included it for September’s backburn.

Top Ten Tuesday at The Broke and Bookish (every Tuesday).

Tough Travel by Nathan at the Fantasy Review Barn 

Completed the readalong for Kushiel’s Chosen by Jacqueline Carey

‘Wait’ll they get aload of me’

This week over at the Broke and the Bookish the Top Ten Tuesday topic for discussion is:

Ten Books To Read If You Like urban fantasy:

  1. The Mercy Thompson series by Patrician Briggs – all sorts of things going on in this series.
  2. The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher – a Chicago based private investigator who just so happens to be a wizard
  3. The Trueblood (Sookie Stackhouse) books by Charlaine Harris – lots of vampires
  4. The Generation V Series by M L Brennan – more vampires
  5. The Parasol Protectorate by Gail Carriger – a bit of everything, a book of manners, some steampunk
  6. The Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne – a druid and his trusty sidekick – or dog – Oberon
  7. Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch – I have a LOT of catching up with this series – but even so…
  8. The Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead – okay, there’s a pattern developing here!
  9. The Miriam Black series by Chuck Wendig – no vampires!  Excellent series
  10. The fey series by Holly Black – Tithe, Valiant and Ironside

I did have a few more but thought I’d stop!

Wish I was there..(and, read all about it!)

Yep, (and yay) I’m going on a little jaunt.  I’ve packed my spotted hanky, and like Bilbo I’m going on an adventure.  I’m hoping to cram in loads of books and do a lot of lolloping about (which is conducive to reading of course).  I’m going to be a human sloth. Perhaps my blog should be called sloth books!  i’ve managed to schedule a few posts and I’ll try and read everybody’s goodies – because, let’s be honest, I don’t want to miss any super shiny books that I must get my hands on – a lot can happen in two weeks after all.  These stacks don’t just build themselves you know.

Meanwhile, in other news.  I’m going to be participating in a new blog with a number of other great bloggers called The Speculative Herald.  I’ll still be continuing with my blog but The Speculative Herald will concentrate primarily on up and coming books which is really exciting.  This is the brainchild of Lisa of Tenacious Reader the other bloggers are:

Tammy of Books Bones & BuffyBob of Beauty in Ruins, Mogsy of The Bibliosanctum and Nathan of Fantasy Review Barn will also be contributing occasionally.  Here are the details If you want to check out the Twitter account or subscribe to the blog.

‘I am no man’…

A great quote from Lady Eowyn – who is rather a dab hand with a sword:

This week we are once again Tough Travelling with our able guide Nathan of the Fantasy Review Barn.  This week we will be taking a look at:


Fantasyland is full of threats.  A lady and her sword can keep those threats at bay.

So, my choices this week:

Alix from the Bloodbound by Erin Lindsey – not only is she from the Noble House of Black, but she fights in the war and using her bloodforged sword manages to rescue a person of great prestige.

Ceda from the Twelve Kings by Bradley Beaulieu.  Ceda is a fantastic character and a dab hand with a blade.  She fights in gladiator style games and is a favourite of the people.  Truly – read this book, it’s very, very good.

Adele from the Vampire Empire by Clay and Susan Griffiths.  Adele is a princess with special abilities.  In her fight against vampires she will eventually be gifted in the ways of geomancy however, she is also has her own sword which is imbibed with some form of magical abilities that make it more effective on vampires.

The Duchess Tain Hu from The Traitor (Baru Cormorant) by Seth Dickinson.  Tain Hu is not the main character but she certainly deserves a mention here.  She is a fierce warrior and there is one particular scene in particular where she bests another character in a duel using blades and she is so cool in that scene!  She gets a mention just for that scene alone although she does so much more in the book.

Wydrn or the Copper Cat from Jen William’s Copper Promise.  This is a fantastic book and I love this character.  She’s a beer swigging, foul mouthed, sassy, kick ass woman who fights using two swords.

And that is all for me this week folks. (Oh, except for the Bride and her Hattori Hanzo blade):

The Kingmakers by Clay and Susan Griffiths

The Kingmakers is the final instalment of a vampire series written by the Griffiths and encompassing steampunk, war, love and vampires.  The Griffiths have managed to bring an alternate history to life where great swathes of the world have been overtaken by vampires.  They’ve taken the idea of vampires and using a combination of fresh ideas and old myths created something very original.  If you haven’t read the first two books you may want to step away from this review now as it will undoubtedly contain spoilers.  You have been warned.

Kingmakers gets off to a fairly immediate start.  The war between the vampires and humans is on and the battles are becoming desperate and bloody.  The Greyfriar (or Prince Gareth) does his best to even the odds fighting out at the front with the army but even his expert fighting and swordsmanship cannot deny the simple fact that the vampires seem to be gaining ground.  Desperate times call for desperate measures and so Adele takes a different and more cunning route and using her geomancy sneaks into the very heart of the vampire lair to practice her own special weapon of mass destruction.  This of course brings inevitable qualms about using such a weapon.

Meanwhile the jilted Senator (Clark) has returned to the US and has begun his own war with the vampires using his ruthless policy of ‘killing the herds’ – yes, he’s killing the people who the vampires feed from.  He’s decided that they’re little more than cattle and has managed to justify it to himself – it doesn’t seem that others from his immediate circle are quite as comfortable with his methods.

Gareth is also facing his own personal demons.  King Dimitri has been declared dead and Cesare is about to call a meeting of the vampire leaders to choose a new ruler.  Of course he is expecting to be uncontested and just to help sway the vote will be inviting along a number of dignataries from those countries who have now allied with him.  Gareth seems finally to be experiencing a moment of doubt and comes up with a plan to once again join with Flay in a bold attempt to kill Cesare and be crowned King of England.

Oh, and Mamarou – well, we’re about to find out a little bit more about what really drives him and to exactly what lengths he’s prepared to go to in order to succeed.

So, all the pieces are set out nicely with all the key players poised to jump into the fray.

I thought this was a very satisfying conclusion to the series.  I did wonder how the authors would pull it off but I think they did a great job.  This book undoubtedly has a slightly different feel than the first two.  In fact I think all three books have differed in certain respects.  In Kingmaker the action is virtually instantaneous and non stop.  There are plenty of tense moments when key characters seem to take incredible risks and you actually wonder how they’re going to survive.  There is betrayal and politics and a little bit of heartbreak but the plot is lightened by the interaction between Gareth and Adele and the humour they share.  Adele has really come into her own as a ruler and her people certainly do love the idea of her and the Greyfriar.  Gareth on the other hand, whilst still playing his loving self, coupled with the aloof and cool exterior that he shows to others, seems to suffer from a little bit of anxiety about what is place is going to be exactly.  In fact there’s a question mark hanging over the future of the the Greyfriar.

Given the ending – which I’m not going to share at all – it’s going to be very interesting to see where the next series, that starts very soon with the first instalment called The Geomancer, takes us next.

I think this has been a really good series and I can’t wait to pick up the next book.

I was provided with a copy of The Kingmakers courtesy of the publisher for which my thanks.  The above is my own opinion.

Also – I do love the covers for this series.  Check them out:


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