Tag Archives: Swallowing Darkness

New Pre-Order Links

New links added to Most Wanted:

LORI DEVOTI – Amazon Ink – 26th May 2009 – Buy (US) Buy (CA). About Amazons. Can’t help but think of the snu-snu Futurama episode…

LAURELL K. HAMILTON – Sins of the Flesh – 27th October 2009 – Buy (US) Buy (CA). Next in the Merry Gentry series, following Swallowing Darkness.

November 2008 Reads

November 2008 Releases & December 2008 Releases. Check for any you may have missed or need to pre-order.

Now onto the 7 books I read in November 2008:

Martin Misunderstood – Karin Slaughter “…strange but enjoyable…This is not your standard tale of romance, yet these tragic characters do make a realistic couple.” Buy

Swung – Ewan Morrison “I believed it, that this situation and these characters are very real. This novel is truthful…David and Alice’s thoughts and feelings will probably ring familiar.” Buy

Platinum – Jennifer Lynn Barnes “…a fun read…if only the author’s The Squad books were published in Australia…” Buy

Swallowing Darkness – Laurell K. Hamilton “One can’t deny that the author has quite the imagination…” Buy

Living with the Dead – Kelley Armstrong “But what’s most disturbing and intriguing about the kumpania is who’s living underground – and why. It truly makes you step back and look on in awe of the author’s ideas. Wow.” Buy

I Can Has Cheezburger? – Professor Happycat & ICanHasCheezburger.com “…you’re sure to find a LOLcat to show how you’re feeling…” Buy

Ravenous – Sharon Ashwood “Sharon Ashwood gives good haunted house…Ravenous should go down a treat for paranormal romance fans…” Buy

[REVIEW] Swallowing Darkness – Laurell K. Hamilton

Laurell K. Hamilton
Swallowing Darkness (Merry Gentry, Book 7)
Random House (US & CA: 4th November 2008; UK: 8th November 2008; AU: 1st December 2008)
Buy

Pregnant with twins, Princess Meredith NicEssus embarks on her biggest battle yet in Laurell K. Hamilton’s Swallowing Darkness.

With impending motherhood, Merry knows the safest thing for her unborn children, her lovers/guards and she is to escape faerie to Los Angeles. After all, her cousin Prince Cel desperately wants her – and her nearest and dearest – dead. Or maybe just maimed.

But escaping safely to the Western Lands means working with humans, who may not be fully aware of the deadly task they face of protecting Merry and her posse. Old wounds will bleed again…

The first half of the novel plods. The scenes are long, and things may seem to be happening, but it’s difficult to care. I don’t remember Gran, and Merry’s cousin Cair, being in the books before, so they seemed to be here as a plot device, and not on their own account. But bless Gran; she does bring up intriguing things: His mother was a hell hound, his father a phouka who bedded the bitch when in dog form. You could ha’ puppies inside ya. Though I’m pretty sure this won’t happen, it would make for innovative fiction, indeed, for sidhe-human Merry to give birth to puppies.

Sholto, king of the sluagh, has a bigger role in this novel. But the author seems to write as if we should all know exactly what sluagh, goblins, brownies and sidhe are. And the differences between Seelie and Unseelie. I don’t. And if the thought of puppy birth wasn’t bizarre enough, there’s tentacle foreplay. One can’t deny that the author has quite the imagination…

The second half is much better as the gang starts travelling to the Western Lands, where all hell breaks loose and magic rules for better or worse. There’s death and destruction, blood and gore…and a happy ending. But to find out whether Merry’s womb-inhabitants are puppies or not, we’ll just have to wait for the next instalment.

Cat with Books on a Hot Day

Just showing the one photo here, so as not to clog your blog reader πŸ˜‰

Anyway, Manny’s going through a tough time, because even though it’s spring, the weather seems to be summer. And we don’t have air-con. So Manny stretches out, but he can’t nap because it’s too damn hot. And he’s only a short-haired. Long-haired cats must be near death.

So, the photos are all here, but here’s the rundown:

Kelley Armstrong’s Living with the Dead: Not particularly enthused, but his eyes are alert.

Laurell K. Hamilton’s Swallowing Darkness: Not sure if he’s cuddling or attacking it. But his eyes are psycho, so I guess the latter. (The book is still in good condition, though.)

Rachel Caine’s Midnight Alley: He’s distracted by something else. Probably because the book only glows in dark, not in the light. Can’t win ’em all…

Scott Westerfeld’s Extras: Again, distracted.

Jennifer Lynn Barnes’ Platinum: Unhappy face.

December 2008 Releases

Remember to check the November 2008 Releases first.

CA = Canada; AU = Australia

Laurell K. Hamilton
Swallowing Darkness (Merry Gentry, Book 7)
Random House Bantam (AU: 1st December 2008) – Trade Paperback
Buy

Merry Gentry is not your average private investigator. Half human, half faerie, she’s caught in a struggle that threatens not only her life, but the lives of those she desires and holds dear. Her very existence and her rightful place on the throne of Faerie have long depended on her ability to produce an heir – and now, after many failed attempts, the services of her royal guards have found her pregnant…It is a triumphant moment, but revelation follows revelation: for Merry carries two babies, and she knows that they have more than one father…And of course, there are those of her own flesh and blood who want Merry dead, but she is a fighter and wields a wild magic. And this is her world, where the magical and the mortal intertwine, where folklore, fantasy and erotically charged adventure collide…

Lauren Dane
Undercover (Federation, Book 1)
Penguin Berkley (US: 2nd December 2008; CA: 4th December 2008) – Trade Paperback
Buy

As a lieutenant of the Federation military, Sera Ayers is accustomed to giving orders, not taking them. Now she must obey the one man she can’t stand – and can’t stop thinking about. With the enemy Imperialists gaining ground, a covert team is assembled by Ash Walker. Ten years before, Sera had lovingly submitted to Ash’s dominance in the bedroom. But when he was forced into a political marriage, she refused to play mistress. His marriage now over, Ash wants Sera on his team – and back in his bed. The third team member, Brandt Pela, has an elegance to match Ash’s savage sexuality. And when their undercover plan requires Sera to pose as Brandt’s lover, it ignites a passion among the three of them more dangerous than their mission.

Faith Hunter
Seraphs (Rogue Mage, Book 2)
Penguin ROC (US: 2nd December 2008; CA: 4th December 2008) – Mass Market Paperback
Buy

Living among humans in a post-apocalyptic ice age, neomage Thorn St Croix is a source of both fear and fascination for the people of Mineral City – and now she faces her ultimate test. Deep under the snow-covered mountains beyond the village, an imprisoned fallen seraph desperately needs her help. There, hidden in the hellhole, the armies of Darkness assemble to ensure this subterranean rescue will be Thorn’s final descent…

Richelle Mead
Succubus Dreams (Georgina Kincaid, Book 3)
Random House Bantam (UK: 4th December 2008) – Paperback
Buy

Some days a girl just can’t catch a break…especially when the girl in question is Georgina Kincaid, a shape-shifting succubus who gets her energy from seducing men. First there’s her relationship with gorgeous best-selling writer Seth Mortensen, which is unsatisfying on a number of levels. It’s not just that they can’t have sex in case Georgina inadvertently kills him (generally a turn-off for most guys). Lately, even spending time together is a challenge. Seth’s obsessed with finishing his latest novel, and Georgina’s under demonic orders to mentor the new (and surprisingly inept) succubus on the block. Then there are the dreams. Someone, or something, is preying on Georgina at night, draining her energy, and supplying eerie visions of her future. Georgina seeks answers from Dante, a dream interpreter with ties to the underworld, but his flirtatious charm only leaves her more confused – especially as the situation with Seth reaches crisis point. Now Georgina faces a double challenge – rein in her out-of-control love life, and go toe-to-toe with an enemy capable of wreaking serious havoc among mankind. Otherwise, Georgina, and the entire mortal world, may never sleep easy again…

Jeaniene Frost
At Grave’s End (Night Huntress, Book 3)
HarperCollins Avon (CA: 10th December 2008; USA: 30th December 2008) – Mass Market Paperback
Buy

It should be the best time of half-vampire Cat Crawfield’s life. With her undead lover Bones at her side, she’s successfully protected mortals from the rogue undead. But though Cat’s worn disguise after disguise to keep her true identity a secret from the brazen bloodsuckers, her cover’s finally been blown, placing her in terrible danger. As if that wasn’t enough, a woman from Bones’s past is determined to bury him once and for all. Caught in the crosshairs of a vengeful vamp, yet determined to help Bones stop a lethal magic from being unleashed, Cat’s about to learn the true meaning of bad blood. And the tricks she’s learned as a special agent won’t help her. She will need to fully embrace her vampire instincts in order to save herself – and Bones – from a fate worse than the grave.

Carrie Jones
Need
Bloomsbury (US: 23rd December 2008) – Hardcover
Buy

Zara collects phobias the way other high school girls collect lipsticks. Little wonder, since life’s been pretty rough so far. Her father left, her stepfather just died, and her mother’s pretty much checked out. Now Zara’s living with her grandmother in sleepy, cold Maine so that she stays “safe.” Zara doesn’t think she’s in danger; she thinks her mother can’t deal. Wrong. Turns out that guy she sees everywhere, the one leaving trails of gold glitter, isn’t a figment of her imagination. He’s a pixie – and not the cute, lovable kind with wings. He’s the kind who has dreadful, uncontrollable needs. And he’s trailing Zara.

November 2008 Releases

If you can’t find what you’re looking for here, check October 2008 Releases. I’ve tried to be as accurate as I can with publishers, countries and dates, but a lot could happen between now and their release dates. Still, hopefully you’ll find some of this useful. US: USA. UK: United Kingdom. AU: Australia.

Heather Graham
Deadly Harvest (Flynn Brothers, Book 2)
Harlequin MIRA (US: 1st November 2008) – Mass Market Paperback
Buy

Jeremy Flynn finds he’s needed desperately when his old police diving partner winds up in serious trouble. While on a vacation to patch up their marriage, his wife disappears, and he’s suspected of murder. Rowenna believes that a man must keep an open mind, but even she is stunned by the ancient and diabolical rites being practiced beneath the history and modern day wiccan movement of her home town, where, suddenly, a trip into the cornfields is a trip into the psychotic mind of a killer with an agenda.

Suzanne McLeod
The Sweet Scent of Blood (Spellcrackers.com, Book 1)
Hachette Gollancz (AU: 1st November 2008) – Paperback)
Buy

Genevieve Taylor is a Sidhe, one of the noble fae and she’s unusual, even in present-day London where celebrity vampires, eccentric goblins and scheming lesser fae mix freely with the human population. Genny is a rising star at Spellcrackers.com, where she finds the M in magic – which invariably leads to mischief, malice and murder. Spellcrackers.com is affiliated to the Witch Council, whose ancient tenets prohibit any contact with vampires. Genny also works as a volunteer at a clinic which treats victims of vampire attacks. Then there’s her extra-curricular activity, extracting vulnerable fae lured by the local fang gangs. Genny certainly doesn’t want any closer involvement with the vampire community. But when Mr October, one of the hot calendar pin-up vamps, is accused of violently murdering his girlfriend, Genny’s called on to repay an old debt and prove his innocence. And that means consorting with some of the sexiest vamps in London!

A. J. Menden
Phenomenal Girl 5 (Elite Hands of Justice, Book 1)
Dorchester SHOMI (US: 1st November 2008) – Mass Market Paperback
Buy

Lainey Livingston has just been made a member of the Elite Hands of Justice, the world’s premiere cadre of superheroes. Her work with the Red Knights and the Power Squad was impressive; all her senses are extraordinary, and her great strength and ability to fly are equally remarkable. But no one gets a free pass to active duty, and Lainey’s next test is going to be her hardest. She’s to train with the Reincarnist. Robert Elliot, the Reincarnist. A magician who has lived multiple lifetimes, he’s the smartest man in the world – and Lainey’s last obstacle. He was personally responsible for seeing Pushstar wash out. But his eyes are the softest, kindest that Lainey has ever seen, and he’s just the sort to knock her for a loop. Lesson #1: Romantic entanglements among crime fighters are super exploitable, and falling in love with a man who “can’t die” is like waving a red flag at a bull. Especially when the most fiendish plot ever is about to break over Megolopolis like a wave of fire.

Stephenie Meyer
Twilight (Twilight Saga, Book 1)
Hachette (US, UK: 1st November 2008) – Paperback
Buy

Bella Swan’s move to Forks, a small, perpetually rainy town in Washington, could have been the most boring move she ever made. But once she meets the mysterious and alluring Edward Cullen, Bella’s life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn. Up until now, Edward has managed to keep his vampire identity a secret in the small community he lives in, but now nobody is safe, especially Bella, the person Edward holds most dear.

Lilith Saintcrow
Hunter’s Prayer (Jill Kismet, Book 2)
Hachette Orbit (AU: 1st November 2008)
Buy

Jill Kismet, Dealer in Dark Things. Spiritual Exterminator. Demon Slayer – it’s not the type of work you can put on a business card. But every city has people like me. Usually the police have us on payroll as consultants, because what ordinary cop can face down a Were or an ordinary shapechanger, or an Assyrian demon? Not to mention the silvers or the Black Mist, the adepts of Sorrow House or of the Middle Way? What ordinary cop stands a chance against a Trader, even? People disappear all the time, it’s an epidemic; some of the disappearances are murder, some are fugitives, some are kidnapped by other human beings. Some of them are even found again. But a good proportion of them are taken by the things that go bump in the night. And then it becomes a hunter’s job to bump back. Hard.

Laurell K. Hamilton
Swallowing Darkness (Merry Gentry, Book 7)
Random House (US: 4th November 2008; UK: 6th November 2008; AU: 15th November 2008) – Hardcover
Buy

I am Meredith, princess of faerie, wielder of the hands of Flesh and Blood, and at long last, I am with child – twins, fathered by my royal guard. Though my uncle, Taranis, King of Light and Illusion, claims that he is the true father since he abducted me from my home, betrayed and defiled me. And now he has branded my guards as a threat to my unborn children. Bearing an heir has placed me halfway to my aunt’s throne, that much closer to my reign over the Unseelie Court – and well ahead of her son, my cousin Cel, in this race. Now I must stay alive to see my children born and claim my place as queen. But not all in faerie are pleased with the news, and conspirators from every court in the realm plot against me and mine. They seek to strip my guards, my lovers, from me by poisoned word or cold steel. But I still have supporters, and even friends, among the goblins and the sluagh, who will stand by me. I am Meredith Nic Essus, and those who would defy and destroy me are destined to pay a terrible price – for I am truly my father’s daughter. To protect what is mine, I will sacrifice anything – even if it means waging a great battle against my darkest enemies and making the most momentous decision ever made as princess of faerie.

Faith Hunter
Bloodring (Rogue Mage, Book 1)
Penguin Roc (US: 4th November 2008) – Mass Market Paperback
Buy

In a near-future world, seraphs and demons fight a never-ending battle. But a new species of mage has arisen. Thorn St Croix is no ordinary “neomage.” Nearly driven insane by her powers, she has escaped the confines of the Enclaves and now lives among humans. When her ex-husband is kidnapped, Thorn must risk revealing her true identity to save him.

Jordan Summers
Red (Dead World, Book 1)
Macmillan Tor (US: 4th November 2008) – Mass Market Paperback
Buy

Gina Santiago is a member of an elite tactical team in charge of protecting the world. She’s devoted her life to apprehending the most heinous criminals that prey on society – and now she’s after the worst one yet. On her own, with no backup, the trail takes her to a dusty, tight-knit town on the fringes of society, where everyone’s a suspect. Even the sexy sheriff, Morgan Hunter, isn’t telling her everything. Gina knows he’s trouble, but she’s inexorably drawn to him. The closer Gina comes to finding out the secret of this sleepy little town and its big bad sheriff; the closer she comes to catching the predator, the more scared she gets – because she’s beginning to realise that she has a secret too. A secret that will change Gina’s life…and make her the killer’s prey.

Kelley Armstrong
Living with the Dead (Otherworld, Book 9)
Hachette Orbit (UK: 6th November 2008) – Hardcover
Buy

Robyn Peltier has always lived a normal life. So when her boss is murdered and she is named prime suspect, she is way out of her depth. As the bodies pile up only her friend Hope, and Hope’s somewhat spooky boyfriend Karl, are on her side. Hope, meanwhile, has a few secrets of her own. Namely that she is half-demon, and her ‘spooky’ boyfriend is actually a werewolf. Hope also knows that Robyn has accidentally stumbled into a bloody supernatural turf war. And the only way she can keep her friend alive is by letting her enter a world she’s safer knowing nothing about…

Richelle Mead
Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy, Book 3)
Penguin Razorbill (US: 13th November 2008) – Paperback
Buy

Is Rose’s fate to kill the person she loves most? It’s springtime at St Vladimir’s Academy, and Rose Hathaway is this close to graduation. Since Mason’s death, Rose hasn’t been feeling quite right. She has dark flashbacks in the middle of practice, can’t concentrate in class, and has terrifying dreams about Lissa. But Rose has an even bigger secret…She’s in love with Dimitri. And this time, it’s way more than a crush. Then Strigoi target the academy in the deadliest attack in Moroi history, and Dimitri is taken. Rose must protect Lissa at all costs, but keeping her best friend safe could mean losing Dimitri forever…

Kim Harrison
The Outlaw Demon Wails (The Hollows, Book 6)
HarperCollins Eos (US: 25th November 2008) – Mass Market Paperback
Buy

In the Hollows, where the natural and the supernatural co-exist – not always peacefully – desperate times often call for unorthodox measures. But bounty hunter-witch Rachel Morgan did the absolutely unthinkable to save the lives of her friends: she willingly trafficked in forbidden demon magic. And now her sins have come home to haunt her. As Rachel hunts for the truth behind a terrifying murder, the discovery of a shocking family secret is about to throw her entire life into question. And the long-lost ancient knowledge she seeks resides in the demonic ever-after. But there are some lines that should never be crossed – like the one Rachel Morgan’s stepping over…again!

Cover Art for Laurell K Hamilton’s SWALLOWING DARKNESS

Found the cover art for Laurell K Hamilton’s Swallowing Darkness today. Am pretty sure that’s a naked body and some form of sword, but I’m not familiar enough with weaponry to tell you what kind. Judging by the title, Merry will go down on Doyle, but that’s just a random guess. A Lick of Frost had a really interesting final 80 pages, if I remember correctly, which gives me hope that the series might be improving. Good news, everyone.

Today’s been a topsy-turvy day. Seethed in the morning (as usual). Received a mail that my library reservation of Jennifer Armintrout’s Ashes to Ashes was ready for my collection, and I think it’s on my bed right now. (But I’ve got to finish the book I’m currently reading first.)

So I go to the bank to withdraw cash so I can post something. Only “insufficient funds”. Meaning there was not even $20 in my account, and I even tried two different ATMs. Anyway, the problem was that I didn’t realise that my incoming PayPal payments don’t go straight to my bank account – they wait in PayPal until I transfer them over myself, which I did this arvo. But it’s made me feel really, really broke.

But more good points: a great friend asked me for plot advice. Which made me feel like my opinion is worth something, and that never fails to brighten my day πŸ™‚

And then I received an email from a paranormal romance fan in Zambia. I know I bitch a lot about how not every US/UK book makes it to Australia. If they do, it’s because they’re imported in by Australians who then sell them on their websites or eBay – which is why I’ve bought so many urban fantasy books on eBay Australia. Anyway, if I thought it’s hard to come across my chosen books in Australia, the situation’s even worse in Zambia. Which makes me realise how spoiled we are in the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. And that we should help our foreign friends when they need us. Call it good karma, or whatever, but I do like knowing I’ve made someone’s day or at least made them smile. Which makes me think that maybe I’m not such a selfish bitch after all, believe it or not πŸ˜‰