9 New Covers (Armstrong, Bickle, Caine, Crewe, Ewing, Farley, Frankel, Jones, Lang)

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[REVIEW] Red Rising – Pierce Brown

Pierce Brown
Red Rising (Red Rising, Book 1)
Random House Del Rey (US & CA: 15th July 2014); Hachette Hodder (UK: 25th September 2014; AU: 13th January 2015)
Buy (US Kindle Edition) Buy (US Hardcover) Buy (US Paperback) Buy (UK Kindle Edition) Buy (UK Paperback) Buy (CA Kindle Edition) Buy (CA Hardcover) Buy (CA Paperback) Buy (Worldwide Hardcover) Buy (Worldwide Paperback)

TRIGGER WARNINGS: The book contains scenes of attempted suicide and attempted rape, as well as mentions of rape.

My associates’ ratings for Red Rising fall into two distinct camps: 5 stars, and Did Not Finish. Unpopular opinion time! I give it 3 stars.

When something’s described as “cross-genre” or “genre-bending”, it seems to signal that the book doesn’t know what it wants to be. This was my problem.

Red Rising blasts off with the brilliant Part 1, about family, work, life, and death. This section is sci-fi, including mining for methane on Mars. Darrow realises that life will always be rigged, no matter what “colour” you are. (I use quotations because there’s a colour system in place – the richest are Gold, the poorest are Red. Not sure if it involves skin colour.)

Fridging occurs (woman in peril to give a man’s life meaning), and Darrow is recruited to bring about a revolution by going undercover as a Gold. Insert makeover montage here. Then he’s sent to the Institute and tested for attributes to be put in a House. Insert sorting hat scene here.

It’s downhill from Part 2 onwards, and the story becomes more traditional/epic/high fantasy: teens set off into the wilderness for war games, wherein they build shelters, kill or forage for food, capture horses, steal weapons, enslave or kill enemies, until…well, I’m not entirely certain how the game comes to a stop. Though it seems wrong to call it a “game” when rape (or at least threats of rape) and murder are committed so frequently.

The more I think about Red Rising, the more problematic it seems. It’s very tropey, but overall it’s more disappointing than bad. I intend to read Book 2 at some stage, but hopefully it has more sci-fi stuff, rather than pissing contests.

21st July 2015 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

Avery Hastings
Torn (Feuds, Book 2)
St. Martin’s Griffin (US: 21st July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Determined to escape from TOR-N, a corrupt Narxis research centre, Davis meets another recovered patient, Mercer, whose sweet smile and quirky sense of humour give her hope in humanity again – and a way out. As they make a perilous journey seeking clues that could lead to a cure, Davis and Mercer’s friendship begins to evolve into something more…but she’s still struggling to let go of her feelings for Cole, whom she believes is dead. Meanwhile, Cole has plans to change his identity in order to compete in the Olympiads – where Imps have now been invited to compete against Priors. He begins training with Mari, the intense and rebellious daughter of a retired fighter, but through trials and tests that are both exhausting and exhilarating, he finds himself in over his head – literally.

Amanda Panitch
Damage Done
Random House (US & CA: 21st July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

22 minutes separate Julia Vann’s before and after. Before: Julia had a twin brother, a boyfriend, and a best friend. After: She has a new identity, a new hometown, and memories of those twenty-two minutes that refuse to come into focus. At least, that’s what she tells the police. Now that she’s Lucy Black, her fresh start has attracted the attention of one of the hottest guys in school. And someone much more dangerous. She thought her brother’s crimes were behind her. But now she’s being forced to confront the dark secrets she thought were safely left behind. How far will Julia go to keep her slate clean? One thing is clear: The damage done can never be erased. It’s only just beginning…

Laurie Faria Stolarz
Return to the Dark House (Dark House, Book 2)
Disney-Hyperion (US: 21st July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Two months have passed since Ivy narrowly escaped the Nightmare Elf’s grip, but the memories of Parker, Natalie, Shayla, Frankie, and Garth continue to haunt her. Their killer is still out there – somewhere. The police trail has gone cold, though, and it’s up to Ivy to piece together the clues to find him. When a cryptic video arrives in her inbox, Ivy soon finds herself back in the spotlight, this time on a twisted scavenger hunt through the dark, ancient halls of a long-forgotten Gothic school building. Ivy’s not alone, either. Taylor Monroe has returned to the scene. But can Taylor be trusted? Or is she another pawn in the Nightmare Elf’s deadly game?

Now Available for US Pre-Order

V. C. Andrews: SAGE’S EYES (mass market paperback): 26th January 2016: Buy (US)
Kelley Armstrong: FOREST OF RUIN: 5th April 2016: Buy (US)
Robin Bridges: DREAMING OF ANTIGONE: 29th March 2016: Buy (US)
Janet Edwards: EARTH 2788: THE EARTH GIRL SHORT STORIES: 4th July 2015: Buy (US)
Rinda Elliott: RAISONNE CURSE (paperback): 14th July 2015: Buy (US)
Claudia Gabel & Cheryl Klam: ETHERWORLD (paperback): 29th March 2016: Buy (US)
Francesca Haig: THE REFUGE SONG: 3rd May 2016: Buy (US)
Kim Harrison: THE DRAFTER (mass market paperback): 26th April 2016: Buy (US)
Kathy Hepinstall & Becky Hepinstall: SISTERS OF SHILOH (paperback): 29th March 2016: Buy (US)
Karen Kincy: STORMS OF LAZARUS: 29th July 2015: Buy (US)
Karen Kincy: CLOCKWORK MENAGERIE: 1st September 2015: Buy (US)
Kate Karyus Quinn: DOWN WITH THE SHINE: 26th April 2016: Buy (US)
Jessica Spotswood: WILD SWANS: 1st April 2016: Buy (US)
Rachel Vincent: MENAGERIE: 29th September 2015: Buy (US)

[COVER REVEAL] Gaia – Karen Ann Hopkins

This post is part of the official cover reveal for Karen Ann Hopkins’s Gaia. Below, you’ll find the author’s links, and information about her books – including the cover and description of Gaia.

Karen Ann Hopkins
Blog
Facebook
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Goodreads

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14th July 2015 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

Carolyn Lee Adams
Ruthless
Simon & Schuster Pulse (US, UK, CA, & AU: 14th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Ruth Carver has always competed like her life depends on it. Ambitious. Tough. Maybe even mean. It’s no wonder people call her Ruthless. When she wakes up with a concussion in the bed of a moving pickup trick, she realises she has been entered into a contest she can’t afford to lose. At a remote, rotting cabin deep in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Ruth’s blindfold comes off and she comes face-to-face with her captor. A man who believes his mission is to punish bad girls like Ruth. A man who has done this six times before. The other girls were never heard from again, but Ruth won’t go down easy. She escapes into the wilderness, but her hunter is close at her heels. That’s when the real battle begins. That’s when Ruth must decide just how far she’ll go in order to survive. Back home, they called her Ruthless. They had no idea just how right they were.

Josephine Angelini
Rowan (Worldwalker, Novella)
Feiwel & Friends (US: 14th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (CA)

Rowan hadn’t seen Lillian in over a year – not since she broke his heart and killed his father in one fell swoop – so why would she pick today to just show up outside his favourite coffee shop, dressed in outlandish clothes and pretending she doesn’t recognise him. Is she turning to Tristan now in some pathetic effort to drive them apart? Why insist her name is Lily? And where is her Willstone? Her wild claims of being from a parallel world are just crazy and pathetic…right?

Andrea Cremer
The Inventor’s Secret (The Inventor’s Secret, Book 1)
Penguin Speak (US & CA: 14th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

In this world, sixteen-year-old Charlotte and her fellow refugees have scraped out an existence on the edge of Britain’s industrial empire. Though they live by the skin of their teeth, they have their health (at least when they can find enough food and avoid the Imperial Labor Gatherers) and each other. When a new exile with no memory of his escape or even his own name seeks shelter in their camp he brings new dangers with him and secrets about the terrible future that awaits all those who have struggled has to live free of the bonds of the empire’s Machineworks.

Rinda Elliott
Raisonne Curse (The Brothers Bernaux, Book 1)
Samhain (US: 14th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

For the past five years, Elita Raisonne has been on the run from a curse that started with her grandmother, and gradually reached out evil tendrils to kill her mother and her aunts. Now, healing from another nasty accident, Elita can feel the curse coming for her like icy breath on the back of her neck. Her only hope: trek deep into Louisiana’s Atchafayala Basin and ask the mysterious Bernaux brothers for help. Pryor Bernaux takes one look at the black smudge clinging to Elita like a shroud, and recognises the work of a powerful hex worker. Together, all three Bernaux brothers could easily break it – if Mercer and Wyatt weren’t away. As the curse sinks deeper into Elita’s soul, Pryor realises time is running out for the beautiful redhead who makes him want things he and his brothers swore they’d never have. He has no choice but to help her. But the magical backlash is torture. And without his brothers’ help, it could even be deadly.

Mira Grant
Please Do Not Taunt the Octopus (Newsflesh, Novella)
Hachette Orbit (US: 14th July 2015)
Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

As Dr. Abbey knows, there are difficulties in running an underground virology lab in a post-Rising America. And unwanted guests must be dealt with.

Barbara Stewart
What We Knew
Macmillan St. Martin’s Griffin (US: 14th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

When Tracy and her best friend, Lisa, were kids, stories about a man – a creep who exposes himself to little girls – kept them out of the woods and in their own backyards. But Tracy and Lisa aren’t so little anymore, and the man in the woods is nothing but a stupid legend. Right? But someone is in the woods. Someone is watching. And he knows all their secrets, secrets they can’t tell anyone – not even each other. Lisa’s just being paranoid. At least that’s what Tracy thinks. But when a disturbing “gift” confirms her worst fears, it sets the girls on a dangerous journey that takes them beyond the edge of the woods. But reality is more terrifying than the most chilling myth, and what they find will test the bonds of friendship, loyalty, and love.

7th July 2015 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

Keri Arthur
Wicked Embers (Souls of Fire, Book 2)
Penguin Signet (US: 7th July 2015); Hachette Piatkus (UK: 7th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Crimson Death, the plague-like virus spawned from a failed government experiment to isolate the enzymes that make vampires immortal, continues to spread. Emberly and her partner, Jackson Miller, are desperately seeking the stolen research for a cure before the virus becomes a pandemic. But their mission is jeopardised by another threat uncovered in Emberly’s prophetic dreams. A creature of ash and shadow has been unleashed on a murdering spree. Now Emberly must summon all her gifts and investigative knowledge to put an end to this entity’s brutal rampage – even if it means placing herself in harm’s way…

Jennifer Lynn Barnes
The Fixer (The Fixer, Book 1)
Bloomsbury (US: 7th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

When sixteen-year-old Tess Kendrick is sent to live with her older sister, Ivy, she has no idea that the infamous Ivy Kendrick is Washington D.C.’s #1 “fixer,” known for making politicians’ scandals go away for a price. No sooner does Tess enrol at Hardwicke Academy than she unwittingly follows in her sister’s footsteps and becomes D.C.’s premier high school fixer, solving problems for elite teens. Secrets pile up as each sister lives a double life…until their worlds come crashing together and Tess finds herself in the middle of a conspiracy with one of her classmates and a client of Ivy’s. Suddenly, there is much more on the line than good grades, money, or politics, and the price for this fix might be more than Tess is willing to pay.

Amy Ewing
The House of the Stone (The Jewel, Novella)
HarperCollins Epic Reads Impulse (US: 7th July 2015); Walker (UK: 28th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

When Raven is bought at the Auction, she knows immediately that things will not go well. And when she arrives at the Countess’s palace, Raven quickly discovers that the Countess is much less interested in having a baby than experimenting with Raven’s mind and body. Raven can only hope for an escape…and to see Violet again, all the while reminding herself that she is Raven Stirling, and she does matter.

Vicki Pettersson
Swerve
Simon & Schuster Gallery (US & CA: 7th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

It’s high summer in the Mojave Desert, and Kristine Rush and her fiancé, Daniel, are en route from Las Vegas to Lake Arrowhead, California, for the July Fourth holiday weekend. But when Daniel is abducted from a desolate rest stop, Kristine is forced to choose: return home unharmed, but never to see her fiancé again, or plunge forward into the searing desert to find him…where a killer lies in wait. Sprinting against the clock, and uncertain if danger lies ahead or behind, Kristine must blaze an epic path through the gaudy flash of roadside casinos, abandoned highway stops, and a landscape rife with horrors never before imagined. Desperate to save her doomed husband-to-be, Kristine must summon long forgotten resources if she’s to go head-to-head against this unpredictable killer. And she’d better hurry. Because she only has twenty-four hours…to make one hell of a trip.

Danielle Vega
Survive the Night
Penguin Razorbill (US & CA: 7th July 2015)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Just back from rehab, Casey regrets letting her friends Shana, Julie, and Aya talk her into coming to Survive the Night, an all-night, underground rave in a New York City subway tunnel. Surrounded by frightening drugs and menacing strangers, Casey doesn’t think Survive the Night could get any worse…until she comes across Julie’s mutilated body in a dank, black subway tunnel, red-eyed rats nibbling at her fingers. Casey thought she was just off with some guy – no one could hear her getting torn apart over the sound of pulsing music. And by the time they get back to the party, everyone is gone. Desperate for help, Casey and her friends find themselves running through the putrid subway tunnels, searching for a way out. But every manhole is sealed shut, and every noise echoes eerily in the dark, reminding them they’re not alone. They’re being hunted. Trapped underground with someone – or something – out to get them, Casey can’t help but listen to Aya’s terrified refrain: “We’re all gonna die down here.”