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Saturday, May 10, 2014

Upcoming speculative fiction titles that caught my eye (by Mihir Wanchoo)

Here are a few books that I’m waiting to read and since no one in the blogosphere seems to be highlighting them, I thought a little spotlight was needed. They all have cool blurbs and even cooler cover art. I’ll be trying to review all five of them on the blog in the upcoming months and so until then feast your eyes on these upcoming (and one released) snazzy titles:

A Snake in the Grass (Jesse James Dawson, #4) by K. A. Stewart


Book Blurb - Jesse James Dawson never wanted to find himself in the middle of a demonic war. However, with the addition of 275 extra souls to his life, he’s got a target painted on his back in the most literal sense. With his apprentice, Est├ęban Perez, in tow, he heads to Mexico where the boy’s mother, a powerful bruja, will hopefully be able to extract the souls without harm to any party involved. 

Champions for generations, the Perez family knows all there is to know about magic and taking out demons. But, like every family, there is drama bubbling beneath the surface. Add to that an ancient evil that has been waiting for just this chance, and of course, things are all going straight to Hell.

Date of Release – July 8, 2014 via the author.

Thoughts: This is really an amazing cover considering the fact that the author is self-publishing it and also because it matches the style and cover art of the previous books perfectly. I’ve been a fan of the series since the first book and I’m very stoked that Kari Stewart is continuing the series of her own. I’ll be getting a review copy soon and so I’m glad to read more of Jesse, Axel and the rest of the gang.

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Radiant by Karina Sumner-Smith


Book Blurb - Xhea has no magic. Born without the power that everyone else takes for granted, Xhea is an outcast—no way to earn a living, buy food, or change the life that fate has dealt her. Yet she has a unique talent: the ability to see ghosts and the tethers that bind them to the living world, which she uses to scratch out a bare existence in the ruins beneath the City’s floating Towers. 

When a rich City man comes to her with a young woman’s ghost tethered to his chest, Xhea has no idea that this ghost will change everything. The ghost, Shai, is a Radiant, a rare person who generates so much power that the Towers use it to fuel their magic, heedless of the pain such use causes. Shai’s home Tower is desperate to get the ghost back and force her into a body—any body—so that it can regain its position, while the Tower’s rivals seek the ghost to use her magic for their own ends. Caught between a multitude of enemies and desperate to save Shai, Xhea thinks herself powerless—until a strange magic wakes within her. Magic dark and slow, like rising smoke, like seeping oil. A magic whose very touch brings death. 

With two extremely strong female protagonists, Radiant is a story of fighting for what you believe in and finding strength that you never thought you had.

Date Of Release – September 2, 2014 by Talos/Sky Horse.

Thoughts: Karina Sumner-Smith was very kind to talk about the creation of magic systems on our blog and it also explored a bit about the one she created in her debut novel Radiant. I’m very excited to read this one based on what has been revealed (so far) and the cover has a very epic feel to it as well.

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Deadlift by Craig Saunders 


Book Blurb - Deadlift is a weightlifting term that refers to the action of lifting a weight from the floor to a standing position, gripping a bar. David Lowe is currently performing the heaviest unrecorded deadlift, performed outside competitions rules, or any rules, by holding the severed cable of a thousand-pound hotel elevator containing his wife and an undetonated bomb, while a killer in a sackcloth mask looks on, and a hit man holds a loaded gun to his head. 

David is no superhero, he has no special abilities other than mere human strength and the will to save his wife. He’s been holding the elevator for one minute and thirty-six seconds, bloodying his hands, tearing muscle fibers and cracking bones. 

But push him to his limit and he'll dig deep, find more. Because when everything is on the line, it's not about muscle anymore—it’s about heart...and never, ever, giving up on what you love 

Release Date – April 27, 2014 via Dark Fuse books.

Thoughts: This novella has everything going for it. A super cool cover, a fascinating blurb that forces you to read the book and lastly it’s a story about weight-lifting, bonds of family and love. Where else would you find such an irresistible combination and so I'll be getting my hands on this one ASAP.

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Disciple of the Wind (Fated Blades #3) by Steve Bein 


Book Blurb - When Tokyo falls victim to a deadly terrorist attack, Detective Sergeant Mariko Oshiro knows who is responsible, even if she doesn’t have proof. She urges her commanding officers to arrest the perpetrator—an insane zealot who was just released from police custody. When her pleas fall on deaf ears, she loses her temper and then her badge, as well as her best chance of fighting back. 

Left on her own, and armed with only her cunning and her famed Inazuma blade, Mariko must work outside the system to stop a terrorist mastermind. But going rogue draws the attention of an underground syndicate known as the Wind. For centuries, they have controlled Japanese politics from the shadows, using mystical relics to achieve their nefarious ends—relics like Mariko’s own sword and the iron demon mask whose evil curse is bound to the blade. Now the Wind is set on acquiring Mariko. 

Mariko is left with a perilous choice: Join an illicit insurgency to thwart a deadly villain, or remain true to the law. Either way, she cannot escape her sword’s curse. As sure as the blade will bring her to victory, it also promises to destroy her….

Date of Release – April 7, 2015 via ROC.

Thoughts: I’m a big fan of Steve Bein’s Fated Blades series and since Steve was so kind enough to reveal this book’s title in his interview last year along with a few clues, I'm very excited to read what happens next. Chris McGrath continues his impressive run of covers with this series and manages to one-up himself after the previous two superb ones. This book seems to be a bit delayed and hopefully I’ll be able to find out why. This is also the end of the Mariko trilogy and so I look forward to an epic ending.

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Illusive by Emily Lloyd-Jones


Book Blurb - When the MK virus swept across the planet, a vaccine was created to stop the epidemic, but it came with some unexpected side effects. A small percentage of the population developed superhero-like powers. Seventeen-year-old Ciere Giba has the handy ability to change her appearance at will. She's what's known as an illusionist...She's also a thief. 

After a robbery goes awry, Ciere must team up with a group of fellow super-powered criminals on another job that most would consider too reckless. The formula for the vaccine that gave them their abilities was supposedly destroyed years ago. But what if it wasn't? 

The lines between good and bad, us and them, and freedom and entrapment are blurred as Ciere and the rest of her crew become embroiled in a deadly race against the government that could cost them their lives.

Date of Release – July 15, 2014 via Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.

Thoughts: Illusive has the tagline of "X-Men meets Ocean’s Eleven" with a post-apocalyptic feel. Now I usually take all such announcements with more than a pinch of salt. With this one though, I’m willing to take a chance and see what the author has planned, plus the neat cover helps and hopefully this will not disappoint.

1 comments:

Ashana Lian said...

This is a great list. So many compelling ideas! Thanks for sharing - I can add it to my TBR for winter holiday reading or something. =]

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