TTT : BFFs

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic is:

Book Characters I’d Love to Be Besties With

1.  Silas – This is a character that I met recently in Sorcery of Thorns and loved.  Oh Yes,I would like to be friends with Silas.  He certainly isn’t predictable, maybe a bit scary but yes, be my friend please.

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2. Nona from the Book of the Ancestor series by Mark Lawrence – she would be one scary badass friend to have.  But, more than that, Nona would be a true friend, even a friend who can forgive.

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3. Mercy Thompson – from the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs.  Mercy would be the most fantastic friend to have.  She’s genuine, likable, imperfect, she knows when to ask for help but at the same time isn’t afraid to dive in when needs must. Storm Cursed is the latest in the series.

StormCursed

4. Toby Daye – I had to.  This is another fantastic series that is made so much better by the central character.  October Daye is a friend indeed and a great character.  I highly recommend this series by Seanan McGuire

Rosemary

5. Yukemo from the Shadow of the Fox series by Julie Kagawa.  Yumeko is a Kitsune shapeshifter which makes her especially interesting straight away but on top of that she has a wonderful innocence about her, she doesn’t ask her friends to put themselves in danger but will relentlessly pursue what she thinks is right even if she’s alone in doing so.  Plus a great sense of humour and a wicked streak with her magic.

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6. Prof Cray from the Naturalist series by Andrew Mayne.  Okay, the professor is a little bit detached in many ways, and a bit awkward around people, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t want or need friends does it.  Anyway, he’s exceptionally intelligent and I love his thought processes.  Never a dull moment with this guy.

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7. Dru Jasper from the series by Laurence MacNaughton – to be honest I would like to be friends with Dru and all her friends.  Such a great circle with strong connections, they know each other well, this use their strengths to the best advantage and they try to back each other up.

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8. Reichis from the Spellslinger series by Sebastien DeCastell.  Really, who wouldn’t want a furry cat squirrel, harh talking, butter biscuit eating (when he can’t get eyeballs) feisty critter as a best friend.  I definitely would be friends with Richis whether he liked it or not –  probably not.

Spellslinger

9  Jean Tannen – what??  We could be very good friends.  It could work -I’m not crazy.

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TTT : Cover Face Off

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic is:

Cover Redesigns  Cover Face Off

I decided to change the theme slightly and choose ten books with different versions and have a face off:

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

I can’t deny I have a soft spot for SF Masterworks covers so the blue is my favourite although I think all three of these are okay.

The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien

I actually like all three of these covers but again, I have an undeniable soft spot for the cover depicting Smaug protecting his hoard.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman

I’m never overly fond of movie tie-in covers but the one here isn’t that bad.  My favourite is the black and white cover though.  I love that cover.

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman

I love the middle cover.  Possibly because of familiarity but I love these covers.

The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

So, the silver and purple version is the one I first read/bought but I love the third cover – I can’t explain it.  It is the one.

Kushiel’s Dart by Jacqueline Carey


The blue cover is my favourite of these – it is a little bit dated but I feel it’s the best one in terms of fitting the story – the other two, well, they’re not bad covers but my immediate impression, if I saw these without any knowledge of the book, would be that the story involved vampires.

Best Served Cold by Joe Abercrombie

Now, I’ve not read this series – don’t go there – so can’t speak as to which is the most fitting but I like the first cover.  Maps.  Enough said.

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

Three quite different styles here.  The third was the original cover I bought but I really like the middle cover.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

I really do like the cover with the mask so this is a close run thing – but the door.  I have to know where that door is going to.  I have to.

I’ve left No.10 free for you to give me an example 😀

 

Top Ten Tuesday : ‘Go To’ Authors (2)

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic is:

Freebie

So, a couple of weeks ago the topic for TTT was ‘Auto Buy Authors and I went for an all female list and undertook to do a separate list for male authors.  This week being a ‘freebie’ therefore seems like the perfect opportunity to make that list.  Here are my ‘go to’ male authors.  In some cases I’ve actually gone for fairly ‘new to me’ authors but only where at the moment I feel absolutely certain that I’ll want to read more. Like with my last list I may have accidentally cheated and chosen 11 authors. To be clear – this is not a full list of author’s that I love – just ones that I’m always on the look out for news.  Here’s my list:

Mark Lawrence – I’ve probably read at least 14 books by Mark Lawrence so far which is quite staggering when you consider Prince of Thorns was only released in 2011.  Three complete series down the line – The Broken Empire, The Red Queen’s War and The Book of the Ancestor, plus two books into his Impossible Times Sci-Fi time travelling, 80s adventure – I think I can safely say that I haven’t yet read a book by this author that I didn’t love. So, wow.  If I was to choose a favourite I’d probably want to say Prince of Thorns because this was my first introduction, but having thought about it I think The Wheel of Osheim has been my absolute favourite – although Red Sister…. bah, who can choose.

Neil Gaiman – similarly, I’ve read quite a number of Mr Gaiman’s books.  Off the top of my head, Coraline, Stardust, Neverwhere, The Graveyard Book, American Gods, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, Smoke and Mirrors, at least the first five instalments in the Sandman series (which I do intend to complete eventually), The Sleeper and the Spindle, Hansel and Gretel, The Truth is a Cave in the Black Mountains, Good Omens (written in conjunction with Terry Pratchett) – so maybe 15 books give or take.  This is an author who can go from fairytale retellings to quite dark fantasy.  My favourite to date is probably The Graveyard Book.

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Sebastien de Castell – my introduction to this author was the first book in the Greatcoats series – which I really enjoyed, but, coming from a point of already being quite disastrously behind with the series I never seem to have found the time to catch up.  His most recent series however, Spellslinger – I’ve read the first five in the series and can’t wait to catch up with the final instalment – Crownbreaker – sounds kind of ominous!

Queens

Robert J Bennett – my first introduction to Mr Bennett (which I confess gives me a kick every time I type it – every. time.  Mr Bennett! – was the Troupe.  I loved it and in fact went and read his backlist on the strength of it.  So, Mr Shivers, The Company Man, American Elsewhere, the first two books in The Divine Cities trilogy – **note to self to add the third book to 2019 rewind challenges list! And, finally, the first book in the Founders series – Foundryside – which was brilliant.  If I had to choose an absolute favourite I would go for the Troupe, it just holds that spot in my heart for being the book that brought this author to my attention in the first place.

The Troupe

John Gwynne – now, this is a fairly new to me author.  I never read Malice or the other three books in the Faithful and the Fallen series but I was really excited to pick up a Time of Dread which is set in the same world as that series but a few years further down the line.  I loved that book and in fact A Time of Blood was equally as good if not better.  Mind = blown.  One can only hope that there is plenty more goodness yet to come from this world – and, in case you haven’t seen the recent news I understand that Mr Gwynne has recently signed a new 3 book deal for an exciting new series.  Details here – but briefly, – a Norse inspired saga from a war torn land.

Joe Abercrombie – again, and don’t beat up over it, I’ve not read all Lord Grimdark’s books – I know, I do feel the shame of it, believe me.  But, I’ve read the start of his Shattered Sea trilogy (which I do intend to return to and complete) and I’ve just picked up the first in his new Age of Madness series, A Little Hatred – I loved it and can’t wait to read more.  My review will be up in a few weeks.

RJ Barker – another fairly new to me author but I loved the first two in the Wounded Kingdom series and intend to listen to the third book on audio to complete the series.  On top of this I’m hoping to pick up Bone Ships in the next few weeks – the first instalment in The Tide Child series – check out the gorgeous cover.

BoneShips

Andrew Mayne – what a surprise this author is.  He writes a mystery series starring Professor Theo Cray as the main pov.  Theo is a little bit detached in some ways, he finds it difficult to connect to others, but his mind is a thing of beauty.  The Naturalist series got started with The Naturalist and moved on to Looking Glass and Murder Theory.  I’ve loved all three instalments so far and so I’m really excited that No.4 is due out fairly soon.  Dark Pattern – excitement am I.

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Peter McLean – I’m loving his War for the Rose Throne series.  A dark fantasy with a strong gangster theme, Priest of Bones and Priest of Lies to date.  I also read this author’s Burned Man series – a very dark urban fantasy including Drake, Dominion and Damnation.  The series isn’t concluded yet but I think a fourth may be planned?

Priestof

Brandon Sanderson – I’ve not read all of this author’s books, in fact sometimes I find the amount of series he’s written so far a little daunting.  But I’ve read his Mistborn series, the first two from the Words of Radiance (I’ve a copy of Oathbringer on audio – NGL 55 hours – wow, just wow, that is a little bit overwhelming and yet I know I will be completely absorbed once I start.  So, what else – ohh, I loved the Emperor’s Soul, just loved it and I recently started the Skyward series and enjoyed it so much I gave it a very strong 5* rating

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Scott Lynch – ahh, the Gentleman Bastards.  This author has to be on the list of my auto buys – anyone who writes a series this good and brings to me one character in particular that I just love – Jean Tannen – then, this gets my vote (plus the other characters are also amazing – but Jean!).   I’ve read four books (including No.0) and just can’t wait for The Thorn of Emerblain.  I will be reading this as soon as it is published.  I will be the first in the queue.  I will.  (And, between you and I, I could absolutely swear that I saw something very recent about Mr Lynch submitting his draft – don’t quote me though because I can’t find anything now I’m looking so perhaps it was a dream or something!)

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TTT : Wish you were there?

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic is:

Settings I’d Like to See More Of

I’ve gone for a mix of things that I’m not sure you’d entirely class as ‘setting’ as such – but, anyway, here they are:

Japanese high fantasy – such as the Shadow of the Fox series by Julie Kagawa – a great setting filled with different myths and folklore, hungry ghosts, shadow paths, kitsumes and magic. Shadow of the Fox and Soul of the Sword.

The 80s.  I love reading books set in the 80s such as Ready Player One, or One Word Kill.

Cold climates – Books set in places with a colder climate can make fantastic winter reads – you know it’s cold outside but you’re on the inside, all cosy, reading about the snow and the howling wind.  The Bear and the Nightingale, The Snow Child, The Wolf in the Whale

Historic Russia – for example, the Danilov Quintet by Jasper Kent – vampires, or  voordalak–creatures of Russian folklore.  A series spanning history starting with the French Invasion and working its way through to the Revolution.

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The Land of the Fae – I can’t resist tales of the fae and any excuse to travel into their realms.  The Queen of the Fae for me is Holly Black – I read her earlier series (Tithe, etc) a few years ago but more recently have loved returning to these realms by reading The Cruel Prince.

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Alternate Mexico – I’m loving spending time in alternate Mexico and I’m thinking of one author in particular.  Silvia Moreno-Garcia wrote Certain Dark Things, a fantastic vampire novel set in Mexico and then more recently Gods of Jade and Shadow which takes us to the roaring 20s and is a fairytale style story of a young Mexican woman determined to take the initiative.

Out at Sea

I love stories of pirates and swashbuckling and can always be persuaded to pick up more.  Red Seas Under Red Skies by Scott Lynch and Where Loyalties Lie by Rob J Hayes.

Above or Below

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman,  Wool by Hugh Howey, The White Road by Sarah Lotz

And that’s my lot for this week folks – can’t wait to see what everyone else has come up with.

 

 

TTT : ‘Go to’ Authors

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic is:

Auto-Buy Authors

I’ve gone for an all female cast this week – maybe I should do a male version of this list too.  To be fair my ‘auto buy’ author list is expanding, I had well over 20 female authors at least for this list but decided to show restraint – this is Top Ten Tuesday after all – I may have cheated and gone for 11 but shhhh don’t tell anyone.

Sarah Pinborough – I haven’t read a book yet by SP that I didn’t love.  She writes in so many different genres.  Thrillers – Behind Her Eyes and Cross Her Heart; gothic style supernatural murder mystery – Mayhem and Murder, 13 Minutes; fairytale retellings – Poison, Charm and Beauty; and many more  I don’t pretend to have read all her books but I’m working on it.

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Lauren Beukes – Again, I’ve not read all of this author’s books but the ones I’ve read so far have been fantastic – Zoo City, The Shining Girls and Broken Monsters – highly recommended.

The shining girls

Laura Purcell – I’ve only fairly recently discovered this author but I’ve absolutely loved the two books I’ve read by her so far – The Silent Companions and The Corset (or Poison Thread).  I can’t wait to read her next book Bone China.

Bone China

Joanne Harris – So many books that I’ve loved by JH.  My most recent was The Strawberry Thief which was absolutely captivating.  Read it – pretty please.

StrawberryThief

Alice Hoffman – Similarly I’ve read a lot of Alice Hoffman’s books and absolutely loved them.  She has a way with words and is the master of magical realism.  Most recently the prelude to Practical Magic – The Rules of Magic which was, well, magical.

RulesofMagic

Marie Brennan – dragons, dragons and more dragons (and other fantasy as well of course).  I love her books, I love the covers, I love Lady Trent and I am so excited for the next book due out soon – Turning Darkness Into LIght which is a new series starring Lady Trent’s granddaughter. Check out this cover and resist this synopsis if you can

Turning Darkness

Diane Setterfield – I’ve read three books by this author, The Thirteenth Tale, Bellman & Black and more recently Once Upon a River.  I love her writing and eagerly await her next book.  That is all.

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Susan Fletcher – my first book by Susan Fletcher was Witch Light.  When I first started reading the book I didn’t think it would be my cup of tea, and yet, as I was having that very thought the pages began to captivate me and before I knew it I was hooked.  I’ve read quite a few books since then – most recently House of Glass which was a beautifully told gothic tale.

Katherine Arden – The Winternight Trilogy –  need I say more.  Any author that gives me a fairytale style series with such fantastic characters, set in Russia and loaded with folklore wins the day for me.

The bear

Anna Smith-Spark – Queen of Grimdark and an author who can paint the pages red and yet instill the tale with a unique sense of beauty.  I’ve loved the first two books in the Empire of Dust Trilogy – The Court of Broken Knives and The Tower of Living and Dying and I’m about to start on the final instalment – The House of Sacrifice.  Excitement am I.

HouseofSacrifice

 

 

 

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