Tag Archive | "urban fantasy"

TezMillerOz

Moon Called Fiction Review

Posted on August 27, 2008 by

There’s more to paranormal creatures than mechanics in the opener of Patricia Briggs’s popular urban fantasy series.

Mercedes “Mercy” Thompson is a hereditary walker, brought up in a werewolf foster home. Now Mercy runs her garage specializing in German vehicles, and takes on a new assistant – who happens to be a werewolf with a lot of trouble on his back. But it’s hard to make friends when you’ve been kept in a cage, and experimented on.

When a corpse is dumped on her front step, and next door there’s more destruction, and a teenage girl is missing…it all leads to Mercy working with werewolves, vampires and fae to get everything resolved.

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TezMillerOz

Taste of Night Fiction Review

Posted on August 20, 2008 by

Science and magic come together to decimate Las Vegas’s population in the second volume of the Signs of the Zodiac series.

Joanna Archer is still living a double life as a superhero and a socialite heiress, going under her sister Olivia’s name. But someone else knows her as Joanna: a Shadow initiate whose metamorphosis isn’t far away. Regan DuPree seems both a helper and a hindrance, and Jo trusts her when she probably shouldn’t. As a result, she unintentionally spreads the deadly virus that the Tupla let loose, and things worsen from there.

Review by Tez Miller

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TezMillerOz

Eryn Fiction Review

Posted on August 13, 2008 by

Eryn James is a medical secretary by day who the police have asked to become bait. Five women who’ve been to LifeMate have been murdered; Eryn looks similar and she’s a shifter – though I’m not sure if it was explained how she met the police and how they know she’s a shifter. But Eryn’s not just a shifter – she’s a beagle shifter. Okay, that’s something new, and it causes for perhaps unintentional hilarity…

Review by Tez Miller

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TezMillerOz

Scent of Shadows Fiction Review

Posted on August 11, 2008 by

Vicki Pettersson brings fresh ideas, deep psychology and Las Vegas’s underbelly in this flashy first volume in the Signs of the Zodiac series.

Since her almost-deadly assault about nine years ago, Joanna Archer has been tough and hard, with an empty façade that keeps even her nearest and dearest away. A blind date ends in violence and death, and Jo’s not just an innocent bystander. Turning twenty-five has awakened powers that have made her a target of the warring Zodiac factions, Light and Shadow. With a parent from each faction, Jo could go either way, and though she chooses to align with the Light, a traitor walks among the troop and exposes them all to the Shadow agents…including Jo’s father.

Review by Tez Miller

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TezMillerOz

Midnight Brunch Fiction Review

Posted on June 23, 2008 by

Unpublished fiction writer Milagro De Los Santos lives with her boyfriend and his wealthy, vampiric family, but it goes downhill when Oswald’s parents come to stay. They’re the kind of rich bitches who look down on the ‘lower lands’, and on Mil, a woman with a small bank account and massive mammaries. It’s no surprise that on a wine tour with these dreadful people, instead of catching up with them Milagro hangs out with drunken Australians. (In fact and in fiction: where there’s booze, there’s Aussies. And to add to the Antipodal flavour, her conversations with her pal Nancy strongly recall the banter of Prue and Trude from Oz comedy Kath & Kim.)

Review by Tez Miller

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TezMillerOz

Ill Wind Review

Posted on June 5, 2008 by


Although first published in 2003, Rachel Caine’s Ill Wind has stood the test of time: with fresh ideas no one else seems to be writing about even five years later. With an easy voice, wild weather and classic cars, Joanne Baldwin features in one hell of a road trip novel. There are three types of Wardens who control/tame fire, earth, and wind and water. Jo falls into the last category, melding physics with metaphysics to create the ultimate urban fantasy read.

Review by Tez Miller

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Flames

Wicked Game Fiction Review

Posted on May 21, 2008 by

Recovering con artist Ciara Griffin is trying to live the straight life, even if it means finding a (shudder!) real job. She takes an internship at a local radio station, whose late-night time-warp format features 1940s blues, 60s psychedelia, 80s Goth, and more, all with an uncannily authentic flair. Ciara soon discovers how the DJs maintain their cred: they’re vampires, stuck forever in the eras in which they were turned.

To boost ratings and save the lives of her strange new friends, Ciara re-brands the station as “WVMP, the Lifeblood of Rock ’n’ Roll.” In the ultimate con, she hides the DJs’ vampire nature in plain sight, disguising the bloody truth as a marketing gimmick. But the “gimmick” enrages a posse of ancient and powerful vampires who aren’t so eager to be brought into the light. Soon the stakes are higher-and the perils graver-than any con game Ciara’s ever played…

Review by Jenn Moffatt.

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TezMillerOz

Biting the Bullet Review

Posted on May 19, 2008 by

Finally, Jaz Parks goes where those in the CIA usually go: overseas. From Florida and Texas respectively in the first and second novels, the spotlight is now on Iran…as well as hell.

Jaz’s twin Dave is part of a CIA special ops squad, whose big target is the Wizard, whereas Jaz’s team’s enemy is the Raptor. Here’s where I don’t quite follow – why the two squads come together, and how the Wizard and the Raptor are linked. The Raptor is part of the series arc, but the Wizard may only be in this episode.

Review by Tez Miller

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alanajoli

The Dead Girls’ Dance Fiction Review

Posted on April 30, 2008 by

The Dead Girls’ Dance is not a stand-alone novel. A reader new to the series (like me) can figure out what’s going on with no problem–but the story doesn’t begin here. Nor does it end here. The conclusion leads straight into Morganville Vampires Book Three (which I’ll be reviewing in the near future). Claire has to choose how best to deal with being wanted by vampires, and how best to gain the protection she and her friends desperately need to survive–how she makes that decision and the consequences of her choice are likely to be the plot of the third entry in the series. As a series book, the story is compelling, the characters sympathetic (even some of the villains), and the world that Caine has drawn is easy to sink into, if not pleasant. Her world is one where monsters aren’t just vampires, but humans, where it’s not safe to be out after dark, and where demons lay in wait in dark alleys.

Review by Alana Abbott

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Flames

Magic Burns Fiction Review

Posted on April 19, 2008 by

I love the world-building. Atlanta has two stages in time – tech (when life is as we know it) and magic. But the transitions between the two are getting faster, and Celtic mythology comes to life. (That sounds vague, I know, but I didn’t really understand it.)

Kate Daniels (whose father is supposedly Russian, but you wouldn’t know it from her surname) still has her almighty saber Slayer, but also has a new companion: teenager Julie, whose wannabe witch mother is missing.

Review by Tez Miller

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Matt-M-McElroy

Claimed by Shadow Fiction Review

Posted on April 18, 2008 by

This is book two of series, and admittedly I had not read Touch the Dark. I was hoping that there would be enough context to bring me into the story and setting without feeling lost. Although Ms. Chance does offer a few lines here and there of Cassie talking about past events, I still felt a little lost. Not huge deal though because the book starts off with plenty of action. Even with me not knowing exactly who some of the characters are…things were certainly interesting. Cassie is looking for a little help in her ongoing feud with some of the vampires. She is hanging out at a supernatural brothel and causing a little bit of trouble along the way.

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alanajoli

Succubus Blues Fiction Review

Posted on April 14, 2008 by

Georgina Kincaid just isn’t into her job. Sure, living off of the life energies of men she seduced used to be fun centuries ago, but now bringing good men down just makes her feel guilty. Is it too much for a succubus to ask to have just one worthwhile relationship in her immortal life? But fulfilling her dream of meeting the right man (who she won’t kill by sleeping with him) has to be put on hold when several minor immortals in the Seattle community are killed or murdered.

Review by Alana Abbott

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Flames

Unleashed Fiction Review

Posted on April 9, 2008 by

Kristopher Reisz’s Unleashed sheds light on the steel city of Birmingham, with its cultural history and blue-collar community. Daniel Morning’s parents are far from rich: they struggle to make ends meet whilst doing everything they can to insure that Daniel and his brothers have a better future…even if it means cheating to get into an Ivy League college.

Review by Tez Miller

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Flames

The Violet War by Monica Valentinelli

Posted on April 8, 2008 by

The Violet War is a series of books, based on urban fantasy setting designed by author Monica Valentinelli. Book One is the Violet War is called Argentum. Chapter One of Argentum is now available online for free. The basis for the setting originates from world myth themes combined with more specific areas loosely inspired by […]

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Flames

Dead to Me Fiction Review

Posted on April 7, 2008 by

In Dead to Me, reformed petty-crime naughty boy and psychometrist Simon Canderous (whose surname probably means something, but I haven’t checked the dictionary yet) works for New York’s Department of Extraordinary Affairs. Psychometry made me think of Kim Wilkins’s Gina Champion series, and the government made me think of Shane Maloney’s Murray Whelan series. But Anton Strout’s Simon Canderous is neither a teenage girl nor a political adviser (and not Australian, for that matter).

Review by Tez Miller

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Flames

Many Bloody Returns Fiction Review

Posted on April 1, 2008 by

The problem I have with anthologies is that the quality of the stories varies greatly, as far as I’ve read. Thus, I am not a big fan. Indeed, the authors in this collection are varied: some of them you know well from various paranormal novels, while others are dipping into the supernatural for the first time (they’re primarily mystery writers, on the cosy side, I think). Instead of judging the collection as a whole, let’s look at the stories individually:

Review by Tez Miller

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Monica Valentinelli

Interview with author Yasmine Galenorn

Posted on March 31, 2008 by

USA Today bestselling author Yasmine Galenorn writes the Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon Series for Berkley (Witchling, Changeling, Darkling, etc.). In the past, she wrote the paranormal Chintz ‘n China Mystery Series, the Bath & Beauty Mystery Series (the latter written as India Ink) and eight nonfiction metaphysical books. With Darkling, she hit the extended NYT bestseller’s list.

Yasmine has been in the Craft for over 28 years, is a shamanic witch, and describes her life as a blend of teacups and tattoos. She lives in Bellevue WA with her husband Samwise and their four cats.

In this interview, we sit down with Yasmine to talk about her success on bestseller list, how her nonfiction work has influenced her writing, and her involvement with an online auction, created by writer Brenda Novak, to raise funds to find a cure for diabetes.

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alanajoli

Happy Hour of the Damned Fiction Review

Posted on March 18, 2008 by


A good urban fantasy can be like a mixed drink. It’s got to have the right flavor—but it’s also got to have a lot of kick. Not so much, of course, that you’ll regret it the next morning. The characters in Mark Henry’s Happy Hour of the Damned might not liken themselves to mixed drinks, but they would certainly appreciate the allusion. Because few zombies appreciate liquor like the heroines in Henry’s novel.

Review by Alana Abbott

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alanajoli

Magic Lost, Trouble Found Fiction Review

Posted on March 9, 2008 by

A sorceress with attitude manages to get her hands on a powerful artifact, which suddenly makes her the most popular (read: most hunted) girl in town. It sound like a great set up, right? That’s how Raine Benares begins her adventures in Magic Lost, Trouble Found, narrating the entire adventure with wry commentary and snarky remarks. For fans of contemporary fantasy, the narration style is a familiar one. Throw it into a high fantasy setting where the narrator is an elven seeker–a sorceress who finds things–and it makes for an odd combination.

Review by Alana Abbott

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Flames

Small Favor (Dresden Files) Review

Posted on February 4, 2008 by

Sometimes, as an author, you might have it in your head that you’re going to write a very long story. Instead of writing an “epic novel” in one book, you break it up into smaller pieces so that when the end is in sight, the pieces fall together neatly like a stack of dominoes. Small Favor was, to me, one of the dominoes of the over-arching plot. While it tied up a lot of previous plots, it also opened the door to a host of questions for Thomas, Murphy, Michael and, of course, Dresden.

Review by Monica Valentinelli

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