#SPFBO Spotlight : the third set of books..
This is my third batch of books for the SPFBO. From my second selection of five I still have two books that I need to decide between and will update on that outcome shortly. For details of the SPFBO check here. I chose my first five books to look at during the course of May and my update post for the first five is here. The book that I took forward at that stage was Rebel’s Honor by Gwynn White review here. My update for the second set of five is here.
The book choices are being randomly chosen. I’m aiming to read about 20% of each book or five chapters (which I think should be enough to give me a fair idea of whether or not the book could be my potential final choice). Basically, if one of the books is standing out above the other four then that will be the clear choice from that section.
My next set of five are below. I’ve added underneath each a synopsis (taken from Goodreads).
1. Lightning Rider by Jen Greyson
For Evy Rivera, thunderstorms have always caused her physical pain, but she’s never known why. When a record-setting storm arrives on the same night her father finds ancient ancestral documents, Evy is set aglow with mysterious tiny lightnings she can command.
Even worse, she alerts some people in the universe who’ve been looking for her family for a very long time.
Thrown back into ancient Spain and tasked with killing a Spanish legend, she must train alongside Constantine, a sexy yet obstinate Roman warrior. He teaches her how to wield her lightning as a weapon, through more errors than trials. With a relationship as explosive as their late-night training sessions, Evy and Constantine battle their push-pull relationship while trying to ignore the two-thousand-year difference in their birthdates.
Ilif Rotiart, her quasi-mentor, is appalled at Evy’s skill. He would prefer to train her father and keep Evy on the sidelines—where women belong. Evy has a feeling Ilif is keeping something from them, but she must play nice until she uncovers the truth. And if he’s lying, it will be the worst day of his four-hundred-year life.
Penya Sepadas claims she’s Evy’s rightful trainer, and she has the prophecy to prove it. Penya doesn’t share Ilif’s misogynistic attitude, but she does have her own agenda…and her own secrets.
Evy must sort through the lies and find the truth behind her family’s time-traveling past before the wrong history obliterates the future. She’s spent her whole life fighting for her place. Now, as the first female lightning rider, she’ll dedicate her existence to fighting to save the world.
But will Evy learn to manage her lightning and find the truth before it’s too late?
2. Stolen Guardian by R.A. Meenan
On the southern tip of the Yelar Peninsula, towering over the beach cliffs of the Desi Sea, lies the Defender Academy, the highly advanced military complex of the country of Zedric.
Near the top of the ranks is Izzy Gildspine, Golden Guardian of the Zyearth Defenders. Izzy’s not sure she deserves her title. Her healing powers are strong, though they’re nothing compared to the elemental powers of her partner, Matt Azure. But she can’t let her doubts get in the way of her job. The Defenders hold up the Golden Guardians as legends and she has to make sure she lives up to that expectation.
However, Izzy’s fears come true after a routine flight spirals into an out-of-control crash on a contaminated island campground, crawling with invincible monsters. To make matters worse, she and Matt find a friend and fellow Defender in the woods, half mad after being hounded for days by a foreign invader controlling the strange creatures.
The horror becomes personal when Matt is enslaved by their foe, forcing Izzy to make a terrible choice. Should she follow her heart and save him, or perform her Golden Guardian duty and kill him? The fate of all Zyearth hangs in the balance and she must decide soon before the choice is made for her.
3. All the Saints are Dead by Douglas Milewski
Astrea is no place for a good woman, especially when she’s one of the floating city’s dragon riders. With space at a premium, and the ground full of disintegrating empires and vengeful expatriates, it’s a race to see which will chew her up first – her mother, her city’s corrupt and lethal politics, or her dragon.
Yet Targa grasps for hope wherever she can find it – in her new promotion to group leadership, in the power that it gives her to hire better riders, or the prodigy that she seeks who might just turn the dragon rider project around. Will it be enough to tip the balance, to save her city, her life, or even her soul?
It’s dangerous to be a good woman on Astrea, where all the saints are dead.
4. Bride of the Midnight King by Kat Parrish
Bride of the Midnight King is a paranormal romance with a fairy tale twist–Bride of the Midnight King. A vampire version of Cinderella set in a fabulous fairy tale land. A coming-of-age tale based on one of the most beloved fairy tales of all time, Bride of the Midnight King melds the romantic/classic Cinderella story and a richly textured vampire mythology to create something unique.
And the story begins with …once upon a time
The land was called Eindar, and those who lived there called it “home,” but those who lived beyond its borders called it “The Divided Kingdom” because it was a place where humans and vampires shared the land but divided the day’s hours into sunlight and shadow, and there were only a few whose lives were lived in both realms.
Eindar had once been ruled by a royal house of humans, but that era ended when the last human king—Lorant the Third—took a vampire wife and died, leaving the kingdom in her care. Queen Isix abdicated in favor of her son Adraxus, and the sons of his line had occupied the throne of the Shadow Palace ever since.
By custom, the vampire kings choose human consorts to rule by their side. A king chose his consort for any number of reasons, but rarely was love involved. Or so it was until the last consort of King Idrax died, leaving behind a most unusual bequest. Lady Judita’s final gift to the kingdom and the king she’d loved was a complete surprise, and it changed …everything.
Bride of the Midnight King is a novella (30K), the first in a series of stories inspired by the classic fairy tales retold by the Brothers Grimm in which “Cinderella” takes place in a world where vampires and humans coexist.
5. As the Crow Flies by Robin Lythgoe
For a thief, getting caught is never a good thing. Getting caught by a wizard is even worse.
“One more job” meant that Crow, a notorious thief, could retire with Tarsha, the woman of his dreams, but “one more job” may just mean his life.
When he sets out to abscond with that last brilliant treasure and seek a life of ease and pleasure with the jewel of his heart, Crow seriously underestimates his mark, the Baron Duzayan. Under threat of death by poison, Crow is coerced into stealing an improbable, mythical prize. To satisfy the wizard’s greed and save the life of his lady love, he must join forces with Tanris, the one man he has spent his entire career avoiding.
But what’s a man to do when stealing that fabled prize could level an empire and seal his fate?
From a dungeon black as night, to the top of a mountain peak shrouded in legend, a man’s got to do what he must.
Until, of course, he can think of a better plan…