Sunday, 31 July 2011

Death Star (Star Wars)

Death Star (Star Wars)Title: Death Star
Author: Michael Reaves & Steve Perry
Superseries: Star Wars
Preceded By: The Force Unleashed II
Succeeded By: A New Hope


Score: 8/10
Chart Entry Point: 9


This is unusual for a Star Wars book, or any book really, in that all of the characters are on the bad guys side. This is a book about people who work for the empire, and it gives us a unique insight into "the other side of the story".

For a start, nearly all of the main characters are pretty good guys. One or two do a couple of illegal things, but then so did Han Solo. But apart from Grand Moff Tarkin and Darth Vader, all of the viewpoint characters are likeable. None of them really want to kill anyone either. Even the one who pulled the trigger on the big gun. It does give a new perspective to the Star Wars films. Many of the people on board the Death Star when the Rebels destroyed it were actually Civilians - running the cantinas and shops on the station. Which was designed in order to end all war...

Friday, 29 July 2011

Nightwatch (Discworld Book Twenty Eight)

Night WatchTitle: Nightwatch
Author: Terry Pratchett
Superseries: Discworld
Series: The Watch Books
Preceded By: Thief of Tme
Succeeded By: Monstrous Regiment


Score: 10/10
Chart Entry Point: 1
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: Bought them on Pre-Order


A friend of mine was looking at my blog for the first time this week, and the first thing she said about it was "How come there's nothing by Terry Pratchett?". My first response was along the lines of "Surely everyone knows how good a writer he is..." but then I remembered a conversation a month or two ago with several people who hadn't heard of him. Hence this review. Nightwatch is not necessary my favourite of his books, but it's the one I know best. And it is a fantastic book...

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Renaissance (Assasin's Creed Book One)

Assassin's Creed: Renaissance (Assassin's Creed (Unnumbered))Title: Renaissance
Author: Oliver Bowden
Superseries: Assassin's Creed
Series: Ezio Trilogy (Book One)
Preceded By: The Secret Crusade
Succeeded By: Brotherhood


Score: 1/10
Chart Entry Point: 40/40
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: Not at all


In these days of computer gaming, more and more books are being based on the computer games we can buy. I even saw an animated cartoon of Pacman the other day, in full HD on a 3DTV. Some of these books are quite good (See Force Unleashed II), and some of them are poor. Unfortunately, This is one of the latter.

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Outbound Flight (Star Wars)

Outbound Flight (Star Wars)Title: Outbound Flight
Author: Timothy Zahn
Superseries: Star Wars


Score: 10/10
Chart Entry Point: 7


Outbound Flight is a mission to explore the galaxies beyond the one Star wars is set in. It's the first book in the Star Wars chronology to include Thrawn - one of the most famous characters in the Extended Universe, and it's for this reason that I chose to read it. And it was a good decision...

Friday, 22 July 2011

Soul Born (Soul Born - Book One)

Soul BornTitle: Soul Born
Author: Kevin James Breaux
Series: Soul Born Saga

Succeeded By: Blood Divided


Score: 3/10
Chart Entry Point: 37
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: I won't be.


I was drawn into this book by the cover art. I found it to be quite stunning. In fact, it's one of the few books that have made me go to the artist's online Gallery. Or even glance at the name of the artist on the copyright page. I know there are some people who do this with every book, but I'm not one of them, so it means quite a lot. After half an hour looking at Dan Dos Santos' Gallery, I remembered I had a book to read.

And I was disappointed. Especially for the first hundred and fifty pages or so. There are three major problems, which I will discuss separately below, but had I not being reviewing the book, I don't expect I would have finished it. I just couldn't see it going anywhere interesting. Which is where the first problem comes in...

Monday, 18 July 2011

The Last of the Sky Pirates (Edge Chronicles: Rook Trilogy - Book One)

Edge Chronicles: The Last of the Sky Pirates (The Edge Chronicles)Title: The Last of the Sky Pirates
Author: Paul Stewart & Chris Riddell
Superseries: Edge Chronicles (Book Seven)
Series: Rook Trilogy (Book One)

Succeeded By: Vox


Score: 10/10
Chart Entry Point: 5
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: Definite


I've been a little busy this weekend, so rather than rush through a book and not give it a fair chance I decided to write a review of a book I'd already read. This is one that I particularly like, so I thought I'd share it. It's not the first in the Edge Chronicles, but is the first of the books following Rook Barkwater, and the first one I read.

One of the main reasons that I like it so much is the complexity of the world it's set in - particularly with the breadth of life forms. Many fantasy books have two or three species other than humans, but this series has many more than that. From Waifs, little psychic elves, to Shyrkes and Banderbears. There are tens of different sentient species, and all of them are quite distinct. There are few other fantasy series that boast a culture as varied as this one. Not to mention the unique technology that they use - much of it based on flight. It's imaginitive and exciting...

Sunday, 17 July 2011

NEWS: Star Wars Reviews

Some of you may have noticed that there are quite a few star wars reviews on the site. In fact there is 18 as of a minute ago. There's a very good reason for this. I like them, find them easy to pick up and read, and there are a lot of them (around 160 I think - although I don't own them all. Yet.)

But some people think I post too many Star Wars reviews. Fair enough, some people might not like Star Wars. But I've come up with what I feel to be a fair comprise...

Allies (Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi - Book Five)

Allies (Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi)Title: Allies
Author: Christie Golden
Superseries: Star Wars
Series: Fate of the Jedi
Preceded By: Backlash (by Aaron Allston)
Succeeded By: Vortex (by Troy Denning)


Score: 7/10
Chart Movement: Remains at 17
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: Probable


The first thing I can say about this fifth book is that it's a reassuring size. The last one by Golden was a bit thinner than the rest of the series, but this one isn't. As for the story, it's much better than the first three in the series.

As I often do, I'll start by discussing the characters, and in particular with my favourite character - Vestara. Vestara is a Sith apprentice, a bad guy by definition, but I  find that I can't help but like her, can't help but want her plans to succeed. As in the previous book, we don't see an awful lot of scenes from her point of view, but if anything this makes her character more interesting, and the rare chapter that is from her perspective an exciting glimpse into her life.

Backlash (Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi - Book Four)

Backlash (Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi, Book 4)Title: Backlash
Author: Aaron Allston
Superseries: Star Wars
Series: Fate of the Jedi
Preceded By: Abyss
Succeeded By: Allies


Score: 8/10
Chart Movement: 19 -> 17
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: Definite


Finally! Something happens! The first three books of this series were really quite slow, but in this we finally see it going somewhere. This time, while still plenty of political manoeuvring, we get too see some action.

This book follows quite nicely from the previous one - where the Sith Apprentice Vestara escapes from Luke and Ben Skywalker on Sinkhole Station. It actually starts with a Vestara viewpoint scene of her leaving. It's one of the few of these in the book - I was a little disappointed we didn't get to see more from her point of view, as she was with a more major character for most of the book. But she is a good character nonetheless, and brings some interesting aspects to the story.

Friday, 15 July 2011

Painted Doll

Painted Doll: An Erotist's TaleTitle: Painted Doll
Author: M. Christian


Score: 6/10
Chart Entry Point: 31
How likely I am to read the next in the Series:If there was one, I'd be interested.


I quite liked this story - but it's nothing like what I was expecting.

The basic premise is that Domino is an "Erotist", someone that arouses clients not using their body, but using special "paints" to simulate them sexually and in other ways. You'll see when you read it. It's an interesting idea, I will say - and something I can see why people might want to try. The other main storyline is of why Claire and Flower are apart - which comes to a rather unexpected conclusion for those two - although I'm not really sure what happened to the antagonist (possibility for sequel?).

Thursday, 14 July 2011

NEWS: Well, That's Different...

You may have noticed that the site looks a little different. I decided that the site needed something more, something to make it stand out. A logo, a banner, a colour-scheme. Something. So this is it.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Running Black (Eshu International Book One)

Running BlackTitle: Running Black
Author: Patrick Todoroff
Series: Eshu International


Score: 4/10
Chart Entry Point: 35
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: Unlikely


The story started promisingly. I liked chapter one quite a lot. But it turns out that it's not representative of the rest of the story. In fact, It's more of a prologue. Which is unfortunate.

While I liked the story, and the idea of clones - if not the names of the first three - I found that the narrative was extremely difficult to read. And I'm not really sure why, if I'm honest. There is one thing that contributed I'll discuss in a moment, but other than that... I don't know. Maybe it was too jargon-y or something. I just found myself not actually understanding what was going on quite often.

Friday, 8 July 2011

Sleeping Beauty, Indeed

Sleeping Beauty, Indeed & Other Lesbian FairytalesTitle: Sleeping Beauty, Indeed (& Other Lesbian Fairytales)
Editor: JoSelle Vanderhooft

Note: This is a collection of short stories - the individual authors are listed in the review itself.


Score: 6/10
Chart Entry Point: N/A


This is the first time that a collection of short stories has appeared on my blog, and so It's a new kind of review for me here. What I've decided to do is a quick review of each story, enclosed in an introduction and overall impression. I expect to follow this pattern in the future, although I have no plans to review short stories particularly often. So, the introduction:

"Sleeping Beauty, Indeed" is a book of fairy tales, with the exception that the "Damsels in Distress" are into women rather than men. Some of them are original stories, and others are lesbian versions of traditional fairytales. The idea intrigued me, which is why I decided to read/review it, and I'm glad I did, as two of the stories really left an impression on me. Also, it had the rather pleasant mild scent of apples...

Monday, 4 July 2011

Trapped on Draconica

Trapped on DraconicaTitle: Trapped on Draconica
Author: Dan Wright
Illustrator: Alexis M. Centeno


Score: 7/10
Chart Entry Point: 24
Similar To: Prophecy of Zephyrus


If you're looking for an easy to read story - you've found it. It's light-hearted, not too complex, yet still manages to stir emotion in the reader. There's not a lot I can say about it, because I enjoyed it - there's not a lot to complain about.

The characters reflect the spirit of the story, and while they aren't incredibly complex, they are quite enjoyable to read about. Except that I don't understand why Kalak wasn't just left behind as soon as the other characters met him. He stands for pretty much everything the other main characters are against. But he does become a more likeable character in time.

Friday, 1 July 2011

Nights of Villjamur (Legends of the Red Sun Book One)

Nights of Villjamur (Legends of the Red Sun)Title: Nights of Villjamur
Author: Mark Charan Newton
Series: Legends of the Setting Sun
Succeeded By: City of Ruin


Score: 6/10
Chart Entry Point: 8
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: I look forwards to it.


I wasn't sure what I was expecting when I began this book, but it' the first book I've read in a while that's ended in a truly satisfactory way. Considering that it's the first in a series, and plenty of plot-lines are left to explore in the next book, I'd say that's quite impressive. And it's not the only good thing that I can say about this book either. I found it to be a very nice read.