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WordGurgle

Word Gurgle

B O O K--R E V I E W S--F O R--A L L--G E N R E S

The Dragon's Staircase by McKenna Grey and Everly Archard

The Dragon's Staircase (Kyndall Family Thrillers Book 1) - Everly Archard, McKenna Grey

The thrilling aspect of this book was impressive and unexpected. The mystery wasn’t off either. The story did a good job of stringing me along through many twists and turns before it revealed its secrets. I wanted to give this book four stars, but it took me more chapters than I like to get into the story. However, in saying that, once it got going for me, I had a hard time putting it down. I also wasn’t very fond of the characters. I found them predictable and uninteresting which played against the mystery for me. Overall, I’m glad I gave this novel a chance, and I believe that many readers, particularly genre readers, will indeed enjoy this book.

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

The Longest Con by Michaelbrent Collings

The Longest Con - Michaelbrent Collings
T I T L E: The Longest Con
P U B L I S H E R: Michaelbrent Collings
P U B L I S H--D A T E: August 6, 2016
I S B N: 978-1536873283
Fantasy, Humor
 

Larry Correia. Kevin J. Anderson. D.J. Butler. Orson Scott Card. Mercedes Yardley.
Would you like to know - I mean, REALLY know - what they're doing when they go to those fancy comic-cons? Because it ain't just writing.
See, every year, thousands of people attend comic-cons dressed as monsters.
Of course, you probably already knew that.
But did you ALSO know that...
every year, thousands of MONSTERS attend comic-cons dressed as PEOPLE.
Sure. Nothing could POSSIBLY go wrong there.
Luckily, the con organizers have placed Wardens throughout the conventions. These undercover supernatural troubleshooters are tasked with stopping mayhem before it starts . . . or solving the murders after they happen.
I'M MICHAELBRENT COLLINGS: author of this book, and one of the Wardens. My job is to go to the cons, where I sell books, make fans, and kill the occasional monster.
It's not just me, either. Those authors I told you about, and even more . . . you'd never guess what many of your favorite authors are REALLY up to at the conventions.
Luckily, though, you don't have to guess.
JUST READ THIS BOOK.
And get ready to have . . . your . . . mind . . . BLOWN.*
* Disclaimer: your mind may or may not be blown.

 

 

 

"From the first page to the last, this book offers a magnitude of fun, humor, and awesome storytelling. I knew within three chapters that I was going to love this book, but I had no idea until I read further in just how much that love . . .(MORE)."

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

Grave Predictions: Tales of Mankind’s Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian and Disastrous Destiny

Grave Predictions: Tales of Mankind’s Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian and Disastrous Destiny (Dover Doomsday Classics) - Stephen King, Greg Bear, Ramsey Campbell, Joe R. Lansdale, Carmen Maria Machado, Mark Samuels, Erica L. Satifka, Brian Stableford, Ray Bradbury, Arthur C. Clarke, W.E.B. Du Bois, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Drew Ford, Harlan Ellison
T I T L E: Grave Predictions: Tales of Mankind’s Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian and Disastrous Destiny
A U T H O R: Stephen King; Greg Bear; Ramsey Campbell; Joe R. Lansdale; Carmen Maria Machado; Mark Samuels; Erica L. Satifka; Brian Stableford; Ray Bradbury; Arthur C. Clarke; W.E.B. Du Bois; Kurt Vonnegut
P U B L I S H E R: Dover Publications
P U B L I S H--D A T E: September 21, 2016
I S B N: 9780486802312
Anthology, Horror, Sci-fi, Fantasy


"This is a book of stories intended to describe that hand of mortal destruction in 16 utterly different, yet all apocalyptically stunning ways!"—Harlan Ellison, from the Introduction.
These compelling visions of post-apocalyptic societies and dystopian worlds include short stories by some of the most acclaimed authors of our time. Among the noteworthy contributors and their works are Stephen King's "The End of the Whole Mess," "The Pedestrian" by Ray Bradbury, and Arthur C. Clarke's "No Morning After."
The first-ever apocalyptic fantasy about global warming, "The End of the World," appears here, in translation from Eugene Mouton's 1872 French-language original. "The Pretence," by Ramsey Campbell, questions the nature and structure of everyday life in the aftermath of a doomsday prediction. In addition, thought-provoking stories by Philip K. Dick, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., Greg Bear, Erica L. Satifka, and others offer an end-of-the-world extravaganza for fans of science fiction, horror, and fantasy.




"When I read this was a collection of stories about the end of the world, I knew I would enjoy it. Each of these stories are incredibly creative. Some of them blindingly so - you think you know where some of the authors are going. . . (MORE)"

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

One Man's Purpose by Stephen D. Senturia

One Man's Purpose - A Novel - Stephen D. Senturia
T I T L E: One Man's Purpose
A U T H O R: Stephen D. Senturia
P U B L I S H E R: Friesen Press
P U B L I S H--D A T E: November, 2015
I S B N: 9781460274699
Literary fiction, General fiction (adult)


Martin Quint, Professor of Electrical Engineering at the Cambridge Technology Institute, is at the top of his professional career. Beloved as a teacher and internationally lionized as a researcher, he enthusiastically embraces his academic overload. But with a baby on the way, a voyeuristic computer specialist posting things in public that shouldn't be, and a critical tenure case for a junior female colleague hanging by a thread, life throws more at Martin than he can juggle.

  

 

 

In the end, I'm very happy I accepted the book to review. I didn't expect a story that would hold me, yet that is exactly what . . . (M O R E).

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

The Devourers by Indra Das

The Devourers - Indra Das
T I T L E: The Devourers
A U T H O R: Indra Das
P U B L I S H E R:Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine/Del Rey
P U B L I S H -- D A T E: July 12, 2016
I S B N: 9781101967515
Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Dark Fantasy
 
 
On a cool evening in Kolkata, India, beneath a full moon, as the whirling rhythms of traveling musicians fill the night, college professor Alok encounters a mysterious stranger with a bizarre confession and an extraordinary story. Tantalized by the man's unfinished tale, Alok will do anything to hear its completion. So Alok agrees, at the stranger's behest, to transcribe a collection of battered notebooks, weathered parchments, and once-living skins. From these documents spills the chronicle of a race of people at once more than human yet kin to beasts, ruled by instincts and desires blood-deep and ages-old. The tale features a rough wanderer in seventeenth-century Mughal India who finds himself irrevocably drawn to a defiant woman—and destined to be torn asunder by two clashing worlds. With every passing chapter of beauty and brutality, Alok's interest in the stranger grows and evolves into something darker and more urgent. Shifting dreamlike between present and past with intoxicating language, visceral action, compelling characters, and stark emotion, The Devourers offers a reading experience quite unlike any other novel.


 

This book was an interesting and unique read for me. I’m not much into werewolves, of any type, however, this isn’t really a werewolf story, at least not in the sense I’m used to. They are not the only characters either. There is a rack of . . . (MORE)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

Beneath The Fall by Aaron Safronoff

Sunborn Rising: Beneath the Fall - Aaron Safronoff
T I T L E: Beneath The Fall
S E R I E S:  Sunborn Rising (Nº 1) 
A U T H O R: Aaron Safronoff
P U B L I S H E R: Neoglyphic Entertainment
P U B L I S H--D A T E: May 5, 2016
I S B N: 9781944606008
Fantasy, Children's Fiction, Middle Grade

Cerulean is on the brink of collapse. The decay wasn't fast, it wasn't obvious, but now the world stands on the precipice.
Woven forests floating on an ocean around a star, Cerulean's once vibrant treescape has grown dim over generations of arboreal life, and the creatures of the forest have forgotten the light.
Barra, a young, willful Listlespur, finds her late father's hidden journal, and reads about his discovery of Cerulean's brighter past and the mysterious plague he believed has all but destroyed it. He warned the Elders. He urged them to take action. Those were his last words...
Together with her two best friends, Barra will rekindle her father's legacy and traverse the Great Forest to relight her world, even if she has to travel beneath the Fall.
 



     This book is one of the most beautifully put together books I’ve had in my hands in a very long time. The illustrations are remarkable works of art, that not only give you give a direct link into the author’s mind, but show you how fantastic. . . (MORE)
Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

A Lady in the Smoke by Karen Odden

A Lady in the Smoke: A Victorian Mystery - Karen Odden

T I T L E: A Lady in the Smoke

A U T H O R: Karen Odden

P U B L I S H E R: Random House Publishing-Alibi

P U B L I S H--D A T E: March 29, 2016

I S B N: 9781101886403

Historical Mysteries

 

 

 

Following a humiliating fourth Season in London, Lady Elizabeth Fraser is on her way back to her ancestral country estate when her train careens off the rails and bursts into flames. Though she is injured, she manages to drag herself and her unconscious mother out of the wreckage, and amid the chaos that ensues, a brilliant young railway surgeon saves her mother's life. Elizabeth feels an immediate connection with Paul Wilcox—though society would never deem a medical man eligible for the daughter of an earl.

After Paul reveals that the train wreck was no accident, and the inspector who tried to prevent it dies under mysterious circumstances, Elizabeth undertakes a dangerous investigation of her own that leads back to her family's buried secrets. The more she learns, the more she must risk. Not only are her dowry and her reputation at stake; Paul's very life hangs in the balance when he is arrested for manslaughter. As the trial draws near, and Parliament prepares for a vote that will change the course of the nation, Elizabeth uncovers a conspiracy that has been years in the making. But time is running out for her to see justice done.



     A Lady in the Smoke was a bit different but a great mystery. It seemed to be a combination of two genres - Literary Fiction and Historical Mysteries. I found that . . . (M O R E)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

The Dragon Round by Stephen S. Power

The Dragon Round - Stephen S. Power
T I T L E: The Dragon Round
A U T H O R: Stephen S. Power
P U B L I S H E R: Simon and Schuster
P U B L I S H--D A T E: July 5, 2016
ISBN: 9781501133206
Fantasy

 


A swashbuckling adventure with a dark side for fans of George R.R. Martin and Naomi Novik—when a ship captain is stranded on a deserted island by his mutinous crew, he finds a baby dragon that just might be the key to his salvation…and his revenge.
He only wanted justice. Instead he got revenge.
Jeryon has been the captain of the Comber for over a decade. He knows the rules. He likes the rules. But not everyone on his ship agrees. After a monstrous dragon attacks the galley, the surviving crewmembers decide to take the ship for themselves and give Jeryon and his self-righteous apothecary “the captain’s chance”: a small boat with no rudder, no sails, and nothing but the clothes on his back to survive on the open sea.
Fighting for their lives against the elements, Jeryon and his companion land on an island that isn’t as deserted as they originally thought. They find a baby dragon that, if trained, could be their way home. But as Jeryon and the dragon grow closer, the captain begins to realize that even if he makes it off the island, his old life won't be waiting for him and in order get justice, he’ll have to take it for himself.

 



     Normally, I’m not much on stories with a nautical theme, however, I was lured by the dragon. I am also a fan of George R R Martin and Naomi Novik, so I couldn’t wait to read this book. And it was good, I didn’t love it, but it was good. I just didn’t really find that the comparison to . . . (M O R E)
     

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

Sleeping Giants - Sylvain Neuvel
T I T L E: Sleeping Giants
A U T H O R: Sylvain Neuvel
S E R I E S: Themis Files (Nº 1) 
P U B L I S H E R: Random House Publishing Group-Ballantine DelRay
P U B L I S H--D A T E: April 26, 2016
I S B N: 9781101886694
Sci-Fi, Fantasy
 

A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near her home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square-shaped hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings. But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand.
Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved—the object's origins, architects, and purpose unknown. Carbon dating defies belief; military reports are redacted; theories are floated, then rejected.
But some can never stop searching for answers.
Rose Franklin is now a highly trained physicist leading a top-secret team to crack the hand's code. And along with her colleagues, she is being interviewed by a nameless interrogator whose power and purview are as enigmatic as the relic they seek. What's clear is that Rose and her compatriots are on the edge of unraveling history's most perplexing discovery—and finally figuring out what it portends for humanity. But once the pieces of the puzzle are in place, will the result be an instrument of lasting peace or a weapon of mass destruction?

 

There are so many twists and turns, so many great opportunities in this book to love it, but it never happened for me because you never actually see what happens, you’re told about it AFTER the fact. (MORE)
Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

Much of Madness by S. E. Summa

Much of Madness (The Conexus Chronicles) (Volume 1) - S. E. Summa
T I T L E: Much of Madness
S E R I E S: The Conexus Chronicles (Nº 1) 
A U T H O R: S. E. Summa
P U B L I S H E R: Inkmancy Press
P U B L I S H--D A T E: February 29, 2016
I S B N: 9780997295412
Fantasy


Seraphina Pearce doesn’t know what’s more frustrating: her magic’s affinity for death, her best friend’s transformation into an albino Sin Eater, or that simply touching a guy she loves means someone’s headed to the morgue.
After a sin-eating job goes awry, she casts a risky spell and butts heads with a handsome stranger in order to win an infamous grimoire.
Marceau L’Argent is the last person she should confide in because the occult cat burglar has a mysterious past, and he’s made it no secret he also wants the grimoire. He recognizes her dark magic and offers his unique help as a rare curse breaker. If all that weren’t enough, Marceau causes butterflies in her stomach—a feeling she’d long thought dead. Seraphina was only trying to break her curse—not piss off Death himself.


 
This book was quite the pleasant read with lots of little surprises in a supernatural world. It captivated me from the very first chapter and (MORE)
Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

An Unattractive Vampire by Jim McDoniel

An Unattractive Vampire - Jim McDoniel

T I T L E: An Unattractive Vampire
A U T H O R: Jim McDoniel
P U B L I S H E R: Inkshares
P U B L I S H--D A T E: March 16, 2016
I S B N: 9781941758649
Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Urban Fantasy

Jim McDoniel’s debut novel, An Unattractive Vampire, is a darkly comic urban fantasy of ancient horrors in suburban cities. After three centuries trapped underground, thousand-year-old Yulric Bile—also known as the Curséd One, the Devil's Apprentice, He Who Worships the Slumbering Horrors—awakens only to find that no one believes he is a vampire. Apparently he’s just too ugly—modern vampires, he soon discovers, are pretty, weak, and, most disturbing of all, good. Determined to reestablish his bloodstained reign, Yulric sets out to correct this disgusting turn of events or, at the very least, murder the person responsible. With the help of pert vampire-wannabe Amanda; Simon, the eight-year-old reincarnation of his greatest foe; and a cadre of ancient and ugly horrors, Yulric prepares to battle the glamorous undead. But who will win the right to determine, once and for all, what it truly means to be a vampire?

While I may not have laughed out loud when reading this book, I did smile or chuckle frequently. It was a great concept and executed very . . . (M O R E)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

Green Eye by Vena Cork

Green Eye (A Rosa Thorn Thriller) - Vena Cork

T I T L E: Green Eye
S E R I E S: Rosa Thorn (Nº 3)
A U T H O R: Vena Cork
P U B L I S H E R: Endeavour Books
P U B L I S H--D A T E: February 6, 2016
I S B N: 9780755324084
Mystery

Danny Thorn has enrolled in Billings College, Cambridge.
After the tragic events of his unsettling past, including the death of his father, Danny was happy to blend in at university.
But, his involvement in a production of Othello opposite the beguiling Stella, sees Danny drawn into the hedonistic lifestyle of university.
On the surface it may seem enviable but right now, Danny can see little to be jealous of.
While Stella doesn't seem to be interested in him, his ex, Julie, won't leave him alone.
But as the term progresses, getting a date for the May ball will be the least of his worries.
A rapist, who's been preying on female students for months, is still at large, and the Othello cast are not beyond his reach.
A potentially deadly case of the green-eyed monster, jealousy, is about to rear its ugly head, and Danny may just find himself unwittingly caught in the middle.
All too soon Danny finds the May week, the height of the Cambridge social calendar, spirals into terror, chaos and murder.

I will start by saying that this book did hold my attention to a certain degree, but unfortunately, not completely. There were times that I actually had to force myself to keep reading . . . (M O R E)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

The Death House by Sarah Pinborough

The Death House - Sarah Pinborough

T I T L E: The Death House
A U T H O R: Sarah Pinborough
P U B L I S H E R: Titan Books
P U B L I S H--D A T E: September 1, 2015
I S B N: 9781473202320
Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Literature fiction (adult)

Taken from his family, Toby now lives in the Death House: an out-of-time existence far from the modern world, where he, and the others who live there, are studied by Matron and her team of nurses. They're looking for any sign of sickness. Any sign of their wards changing. Any sign that it's time to take them to the sanatorium.
No one returns from the sanatorium.
Withdrawn from his house-mates and living in his memories of the past, Toby spends his days fighting his fear. But then a new arrival in the house shatters the fragile peace, and everything changes.
Because everybody dies. It's how you choose to live that counts.

So wow. Where to begin? This novel about children of various ages had me weary to begin. I don't normally read book about kids, and I most definitely stay clear books about . . . (M O R E)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

The Lost Twin by Sophie Cleverly

Scarlet and Ivy - The Lost Twin (Scarlet and Ivy, Book 1) - Sophie Cleverly

T I T L E: The Lost Twin
S E R I E S: Scarlet and Ivy (Nº 1)
A U T H O R: Sophie Cleverly
P U B L I S H E R: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
P U B L I S H--D A T E: May 3, 2016
I S B N: 9781492633396
Middle Grade, Children’s Books, Thriller, Mystery

Ivy, I pray that it’s you reading this. And if you are, well, I suppose you’re the new me…
When shy Ivy’s troublemaking twin Scarlet vanishes from Rookwood boarding school, Ivy is invited to “take her place.” But when Ivy arrives, she discovers the school’s true intention; she has to pretend to be Scarlet. She must think like Scarlet, act like Scarlet, become Scarlet. What on earth happened to the real Scarlet, and why is the school trying to keep it a secret?
Luckily for Ivy, Scarlet isn’t about to disappear without a fight. She’s left pieces of her journal carefully hidden all over the school for Ivy to find. Ivy’s going to figure out what happened to Scarlet. She’s got to.
But the staff of Rookwood is always watching, and they’ll do anything to keep their secrets buried…

All throughout this book Laila showed an immense interest in its storyline. She complained at night when I only read one chapter. . . (M O R E)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

A Man of Genius by Lynn Rosen

A Man of Genius - Lynn Rosen

T I T L E: A Man of Genius
A U T H O R: Lynn Rosen
P U B L I S H E R: Una Publications
P U B L I S H--D A T E: April 15, 2016
I S B N: 9780997073812
Literature fiction (adult)

Samuel Grafton-Hall is a man of genius who demands reverence from all. A renowned architect, his point of view is not universally shared by students, critics, and colleagues - but this is of little consequence to Grafton-Hall, for he revels in his misanthropy.
Immune to the barbs of the masses, Grafton-Hall also suffers no qualms about his personal peccadilloes and perversions. An unrepentant womanizer, Grafton-Hall leaves colleagues, friends, and lovers deeply scarred from having known him.
And then there is the murder. The question of guilt is of less consequence than the question of whether the gift of genius makes one irreproachable.

This is no ordinary novel, and is in no way for ordinary readers. Upon reaching the last page, I was stunned wordless . . . (M O R E)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com

Secrets in the Stones by Tessa Harris

Secrets in the Stones (Dr. Thomas Silkstone Mystery) - Tessa Harris

T I T L E: Secrets in the Stones
S E R I E S: Dr. Thomas Silkstone Mysteries (Nº 6)
A U T H O R: Tessa Harris
P U B L I S H E R: Kensington Books
P U B L I S H--D A T E: February 23, 2016
I S B N: 9780758293411
Historical Mystery

Within the mysteries of the body, especially those who have been murdered, 18th-century anatomist Dr. Thomas Silkstone specializes in uncovering the tell-tale clues that lead towards justice…
Newly released from the notorious asylum known as Bedlam, Lady Lydia Farrell finds herself in an equally terrifying position--as a murder suspect--when she stumbles upon the mutilated body of Sir Montagu Malthus in his study at Boughton Hall.
Meanwhile Dr. Thomas Silkstone has been injured in a duel with a man who may or may not have committed the grisly deed of which Lydia is accused. Despite his injury, Thomas hopes to clear his beloved's good name by conducting a postmortem on the victim. With a bit of detective work, he learns that Montagu's throat was slit by no ordinary blade, but a ceremonial Sikh dagger from India--a clue that may be connected to the fabled lost mines of Golconda.
From the mysterious disappearance of a cursed diamond buried with Lydia's dead husband, to the undying legend of a hidden treasure map, Thomas must follow a trail of foreign dignitaries, royal agents--and even more victims--to unveil the sinister and shocking secrets in the stones…

This is the 6th installment in this particular series. Even though I haven’t read any of the previous books, I had no problem following along at all. . . . (M O R E)

Source: http://www.wordgurgle.blogspot.com