May 14

Locus on Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

“Family, rather than art or magic, is the central theme for this novel,
the fifth and final in the Glamourist Histories series. Jane and
Vincent are finally relaxing with Jane’s family, in Vienna, when word
comes that Vincent’s hateful father has died on his estate in Antigua,
and left a new will that can only be released to a family member.
Vincent’s eldest brother died in a carriage accident that left the
next son badly injured – and the new Earl of Verbury. He asks Vincent
to go to Antigua and take care of things, so he and Jane head out to
get the will – and find a hellish mess of the old Earl’s making. What
horrifies Vincent and Jane most is the treatment of the slaves, some
of them clearly family members themselves, but their efforts to help
are repeatedly stymied. Fortunately, no one expects the two to have
the spying skills they’ve acquired in their adventures, and gradually
they win through. There are parts that are a bit predictable, and I
missed the emphasis on Art, but it’s a good read anyway, with a very
final epilogue that nicely concludes the series.” — Locus

May 11

Library Journal on Dreams of Shreds and Tatters by Amanda Downum

Dreams of Shreds and Tatters by Amanda Downum

“When she doesn’t hear from her friend Blake for months, Liz Drake travels with her roommate Alex to Vancouver where Blake had been living with a circle of artists that included his boyfriend Alain. She finds that Blake is in a coma, Alain is dead, and the artists, especially gallery owner Ranier, are keeping secrets. And Liz has been dreaming of Blake, trapped under water, visions that also reveal a secret world and a yellow king. VERDICT This unusual blend of urban fantasy and trippy horror is particularly notable for its lovely descriptions by Downum, author of “The Necromancer Chronicles” (last seen in 2012’s Kingdoms of Dust). She keeps the horrors slipping in and out of shadows­more menacing for being only half seen. Allusions to H.P. Lovecraft, Robert W. Chambers, and Ambrose Bierce are combined with modern city streets, addictive psychotropic drugs, and a stubborn heroine determined to save a friend.” — Library Journal

May 8

Library Journal on Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

“Jane and David Vincent, Glamourists to the Prince Regent of England, look forward to returning home after their adventures in Venice (Valour and Vanity), but instead they’re asked to go to Antigua to deal with the estate of David’s recently deceased father. Owing to the abusive nature of the father-son relationship, any duty involving David’s paterfamilias would be painful, but it is made doubly so when the couple arrive in the Caribbean only to realize that the man is still very much alive and just as determined to bend David to his will. VERDICT A tropical setting on a slave plantation adds interest to the world Kowal has made in which magic called Glamour is real and manipulated by those with special skills. Jane and David should be enjoying the happiest time in their marriage when they discover she is pregnant, but they must endure the fraught situation with Vincent’s father and the many troubles they find on his estate. Through it all, Kowal paints a lovely picture of a couple who truly complement and support each other, capping off a terrific series.” — Library Journal

May 6

Jay Lake and Elizabeth Bear are 2015 Locus Award finalists!

Congratulations to Jay Lake and Elizabeth Bear on being included among the 2015 Locus Award finalists!

Steles of the Sky, Elizabeth Bear (Tor)

“The Hand Is Quicker,” Elizabeth Bear (The Book of Silverberg)

“Covenant,” Elizabeth Bear (Hieroglyph)

Last Plane to Heaven, Jay Lake (Tor)

May 4

Library Journal starred review for I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest

I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest

“May and Libby created Princess X on the day they met in fifth grade. That was before Libby and her mother died in a car crash. Now May is 16 and looking at another long, lonely summer in Seattle when she spots a Princess X sticker on the corner of a store window. Suddenly she starts seeing Princess X everywhere, including in a webcomic at, where the princess story is eerily similar to Libby’s. This means that the only person who could have created the comic is May’s best friend­Libby­who must still be alive. In her YA debut, Priest offers a tantalizing, page-turner of a mystery that spans real locations in Seattle and dark pockets of the Internet. May is an assertive, capable heroine who finds help from likable and well-realized characters along the way in this fresh and authentic story. Even when the action moves online, Priest keeps the story exciting and approachable without ever resorting to technical jargon. Accompanying illustrations by Ciesemier bring the story found in the webcomic to life and integrate beautifully with May’s search for Libby in this utterly satisfying read. VERDICT An excellent book with loads of cross-genre and cross-format appeal. Highly recommended.” — Library Journal, Starred Review

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