Review: An Easy Death by Charlaine Harris

Distopian urban fantasy set in the SW United States with lots of action, great characters and a good story

An Easy Death
by Charlaine Harris

Series: Gunnie Rose #1

Genre: Urban Fantasy, dystopian, alternate history

Setting: Texoma (combination of Texas and Oklahoma), Western United States, Mexico

Source: Ebook, Library

Publishing Date: 2018

336 pages

Synopsis: Set in a fractured United States, in the southwestern country now known as Texoma. A world where magic is acknowledged but mistrusted, especially by a young gunslinger named Lizbeth Rose. Battered by a run across the border to Mexico Lizbeth Rose takes a job offer from a pair of Russian wizards to be their local guide and gunnie. For the wizards, Gunnie Rose has already acquired a fearsome reputation and they’re at a desperate crossroad, even if they won’t admit it. They’re searching through the small border towns near Mexico, trying to locate a low-level magic practitioner, Oleg Karkarov. The wizards believe Oleg is a direct descendant of Grigori Rasputin, and that Oleg’s blood can save the young tsar’s life.

As the trio journey through an altered America, shattered into several countries by the assassination of Franklin Roosevelt and the Great Depression, they’re set on by enemies. It’s clear that a powerful force does not want them to succeed in their mission. Lizbeth Rose is a gunnie who has never failed a client, but her oath will test all of her skills and resolve to get them all out alive. 

My thoughts

I’ve read quite a few Charlaine Harris books–the Aurora Teagarden series, Lily Bard series, Sookie Stackhouse series as well as other books she’s written. This is one of my favorites that she’s written. The book has an interesting story, engaging characters and really good world building.

Gunnie Rose

Gunnie Rose is so much fun to read about. The book is written in first person and Ms. Harris really does a great job making Gunnie Rose unique. Part of doing that is the language and also the way she talks and thinks:

“I don’t want to have nothing to do with you,” I said. My mother would have given me the evil eye for bad grammar, but she wasn’t there and I was out of civil.

Lizbeth Rose aka “Gunnie Rose” is a gunnie who makes her living using her guns to protect other people and/or caravans of goods–basically anyone who will pay for her for protection.

It was going to be that kind of day. Brushed my teeth, didn’t die. Stepped outside, didn’t get shot. Ate breakfast, didn’t get poisoned. Got in our hotel, nobody waiting.

Alternate history

I like the way Charlaine Harris weaves in history we’re familiar with into this world. For example, the Russian Revolution occurs, but much of the west coast of the United States is now the Holy Russian Empire where what was left of the royal family escaped. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was President of the United States, but was assassinated in the 1930’s.

Bottom Line

This book has lots of action, magic, great characters and a twisty story. And an important aspect for me–I really want to read the next book!

I’m very happy that the second book in this series–A Longer Fall–is slotted to come out in January 2020.

My Rating: B+

Have you read this book or any other books by this author? Did you like them?

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Network Effect by Martha Wells

A self-aware ‘droid who is a security unit–and calls itself Murderbot? Oh, yes!

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books set to publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

Network Effect

by Martha Wells

Series: The Murderbot Diaries #5

Published by Tor.com

Publishing date: April 28, 2020

Genre: Science Fiction

352 pages

Synopsis: I’m usually alone in my head, and that’s where 90 plus percent of my problems are.

It calls itself Murderbot, but only when no-one can hear. It’s a private joke. Funny.

It doesn’t care, it tells itself, and its attachment to the humans around it is merely professional obligation.

It tries to never drop the F-bomb.

“Friends.”
I’m usually alone in my head, and that’s where 90 plus percent of my problems are.

It calls itself Murderbot, but only when no-one can hear. It’s a private joke. Funny.

It doesn’t care, it tells itself, and its attachment to the humans around it is merely professional obligation.

It tries to never drop the F-bomb.

“Friends.”

Ugh.

So, when its human associates (not friends, never friends) are captured and another not-friend from its past requires urgent assistance, Murderbot must choose between inertia and drastic action.

Drastic action it is, then.

Another F-bomb.

“Feelings.”

Ugh.
………………………….

I love Murderbot! Such a good series and so excited that we get a longer book this time. Martha Wells writes such good stories.

Sunday Post: Visit to a sculpture park

Weekly meme to talk about books and a little about my personal life

Sunday-Post

Kimberly hosts the Sunday Post each week. I like to take part because it gives me an opportunity to look back at last week and forward to next week in both my personal life and my blog and book life! I also love to see what other people are doing and what books everyone is reading.

Personal life

Pappajohn Sculpture Park

I had a busy week, but my husband and I found time for a local outing.

Downtown Des Moines has a wonderful sculpture park which regularly gets new sculptures. We drive by often, but this week we stopped to walk through it and admire new sculptures and old favorites. It was a beautiful afternoon and a fun outing.

MacRae Park & EMC Overlook

On the way home we stopped at a small park named for Donald MacRae, a WWI soldier from Des Moines, who was killed during the war. The park is over 100 years old. It needed some renovations so the park has been closed for a number of months. It was reopened earlier this month and an overlook 40 feet above the ground was added which provides a great view of downtown Des Moines.

A very fun outing!

Blog life

Only a couple posts written, but four good books finished!

Recent posts
Next week
  • Can’t-Wait Wednesday
  • Book review
  • November books on my list
  • Sunday Post

My books

What I’m reading
  • Slayer by Kiersten White
  • Echoes in the Sand by Shannon Baker
What I read recently
  • Mantivore Dreams by S.J. Higbee
  • The Long Call by Ann Cleeves
  • Doing Time by Jodi Taylor
  • Christmas Cow Bells by Mollie Cox Bryan
Books I got recently

The Summer of New Beginnings by Bette Lee Crosby (ebook, purchased)

The Last Dance by Martin L. Shoemaker (Amazon First Reads)

To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers (library book)

What have you been doing? What are your plans for next week?

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Death Comes to the Nursery by Catherine Lloyd

A great mix of romance and historical mystery

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books set to publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

Death Comes to the Nursery

by Catherine Lloyd

Series: Kurland St. Mary Mystery #7

Published by Kensington

Publishing date: January 28, 2020

Genre: Historical Mystery

304 pages

Synopsis: Delighted by the quiet uproar of raising their newborn, Lady Lucy and Major Sir Robert Kurland could not be more pleased at the prospect of welcoming another into their home. But their preparations are soon overshadowed by a baffling case of murder . . .

Once known to all in her village as the rector’s daughter, Lucy is now a mother herself—to a wonderful eighteen-month-old son, Ned. Upon discovering that she is expecting a second child, Lucy and Robert are delighted. In anticipation of the new arrival, Lucy is set on expanding her nursery staff. When Agnes, her current nurse, recommends her cousin, it seems like the perfect solution.

But trouble arrives along with the new nursery maid from London. Polly’s flirtations provoke fisticuffs in the servants’ hall and tumult in the village tavern, and on her afternoon off, she fails to return to the Kurland Estate. When a farmer finds her lifeless body in a drainage ditch, Lucy and Robert fear foul play.

………………………….

I’m a few books behind in this series so I need to read some books soon! The series has a great mix of romance and historical mystery.

Sunday Post: Back home

Weekly meme to talk about books and a little about my personal life

Sunday-Post

Kimberly hosts the Sunday Post each week. I like to take part because it gives me an opportunity to look back at last week and forward to next week in both my personal life and my blog and book life! I also love to see what other people are doing and what books everyone is reading.

Personal life

I’m loving the autumn weather though most of our trees aren’t showing much color. There are trees around that have pretty colors, but I’ve heard this isn’t the best year for autumn color in our part of Iowa. And the trees in our yard don’t usually turn spectacular colors. Some trees are losing their leaves without even turning color.

Home

The party hosted last weekend was lots of fun and my husband did lots of yard work for my daughter since we planned to spend most of the day outside. My husband even built a new fire pit for her.

Of course, the day before the party it was 70 degrees, but the day of the party it only got to 50 degrees. However, the sun was shining and we had a bonfire all day so we all stayed warm. It was a fun day. One of most enjoyed activities was painting canvases with acrylic paint. Movies were planned to show outside, but by the time it got dark it was getting way too cold and most people wanted to go inside.

My daughter’s dogs loved having everyone at the party. They got to hang out with everyone and Juneau who loves to retrieve balls had people to throw the ball for her all day long and she just kept bringing the ball back for more! The cutest times were when my niece’s daughters threw the ball. The youngest one is in the above picture. She was dressed as a fairy princess (even came to the party wearing sunglasses!) She had picked out her clothes to wear and was happy to be the princess! She was so cute with Juneau and Juneau was wonderful with her–didn’t jump on her or try to grab the ball from her. Juneau is a rescue dog and my daughter spent a lot of time teaching her not to grab the ball or jump when someone had it in their hand.

Home again

We arrived home on Monday and have spent the week recuperating. But what a great time for all of us!

Television

I’ve started watching Stumptown–one of the new 2019 TV series. It’s on ABC. I’m liking it. It stars Cobie Smulders (who played Robin in How I Met Your Mother).

I’m also enjoying the new season of The Great British Baking Show on Netflix.

Blog life

We were so busy during the week before the party and that weekend that I didn’t do much on my blog and I didn’t get a Sunday Post done last week.

Recent posts

Next week
  • Can’t-Wait Wednesday
  • Book review
  • Sunday Post

My books

What I’m reading
  • Mantivore Dreams by S.J. Higbee
  • The Long Call by Ann Cleeves
What I read recently
  • No Time Like the Past by Jodi Taylor
  • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
  • The Chalk Pit by Elly Griffiths
Books I got recently

Netted by S.J. Higbee (ebook/purchased)

Creed by Celina Grace (ebook/purchased)

Murder at the House of Rooster Happiness by David Casarett (ebook/purchased)

Doing Time by Jodi Taylor (ebook/purchased)

Just After Midnight by Catherine Ryan Hyde (Kindle Unlimited)

The Chalk Pit by Elly Griffiths (Kindle Unlimited)

Echoes in the Sand by Shannon Baker (Kindle Unlimited)

Lies Sleeping by Ben Aaronovitch (ebook/library)

The Long Call By Ann Cleeves (audiobook/library)

The Ruin by Dervla McTiernan (audiobook/Chirp)

What have you been doing? What are your plans for next week?

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Smoke Bitten by Patricia Briggs

A favorite series–werewolves, a coyote shifter, fae and other magical creatures

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books set to publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

Smoke Bitten

by Patricia Briggs

Series: Mercy Thompson #12

Published by Ace

Publishing date: March 10, 2020

Genre: Urban Fantasy

368 pages

Synopsis: I am Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman. My only “superpowers” are that I turn into a thirty-five pound coyote and fix Volkswagens. But I have friends in odd places and a pack of werewolves at my back. It looks like I’m going to need them.

Centuries ago, the fae dwelt in Underhill–until she locked her doors against them. They left behind their great castles and troves of magical artifacts. They abandoned their prisoners and their pets. Without the fae to mind them, those creatures who remained behind roamed freely through Underhill wreaking havoc. Only the deadliest survived.

Now one of those prisoners has escaped. It can look like anyone, any creature it chooses. But if it bites you, it controls you. It lives for chaos and destruction. It can make you do anything–even kill the person you love the most. Now it is here, in the Tri-Cities. In my territory.

It won’t, can’t, remain.

Not if I have anything to say about it.

………………………….

One of my favorite series! I’m caught up with this series and I eagerly wait each year for a book in the Mercy Thompson series or the Alpha & Omega series set in the same world.

Review: Hurricane by Janet Edwards

Hurricane by Janet EdwardsHurricane by Janet Edwards

Series: Hive Mind #3

Genre: Science Fiction

Source: Ebook, purchased

Publishing Date: 2018

394 pages

Synopsis: Being a telepath means there is always a new challenge.

Eighteen-year-old Amber is the youngest of the five telepaths who protect the hundred million citizens of one of the great hive cities of twenty-sixth century Earth. Her job is hunting down criminals before they commit their crimes, but this time a simple case leads on to something far bigger.

This is a case where Amber’s team have to face the unknown and break all the rules they usually follow. Lucas must take centre stage, while Amber has extra burdens she can’t share with anyone. She has a personal mystery to solve, and questions she wants answered, but curiosity is a dangerous trait in a telepath.

My thoughts

I’ve read all three books written in this series so far. Janet Edwards continues to be one of my favorite authors. I love her Earth Girl series which I read a few years ago and am so happy to have found this series. It’s in a completely different world than the Earth Girl series, but no less interesting.

Strong characterization is one of the hallmarks of Edwards’ writing. I like that I feel I “know” so many of her characters. Of course, Amber is the main character in these books and I have the most insight into her and her thoughts. She’s not always happy in her position as one of the five telepaths of the Hive. However, she’s fully aware of her importance to the Hive and that she must put aside any ambivalence and do her job. She’s slowly growing into her role and slowly coming to terms with her new life.

Another of Edwards’ strengths is her strong world building. The Hive is such an interesting place and in each book we find out a little more about this world. In this book we discover that not only are there other Hives throughout the world, but there is also a small community living outside Amber’s Hive known as the sea farm. People at the sea farm may live their entire lives Outside. This is a mind blowing idea for Amber and her team. Amber and some of her team have been Outside in previous books and have gotten more used to working out there, if necessary, but none of them can imagine wanting to live Outside the Hive. The idea that some people actually want to live Outside is very strange to them all.

Crimes are taking place at the sea farm and since Amber and her team are the only telepath unit that can work Outside they have to travel to sea farm. I found the sea farm very interesting. Janet Edwards has expanded the world building to include these people as well as others in other parts of the world who farm and fish and provide food for the hives. There is even some travel and interaction between these groups.

I like that these books are not only science fiction, but also adventure stories and mysteries. Although this isn’t my favorite book of the three books in this series I did like it and look forward to more books in this series. I felt the mystery wasn’t quite as strong as in the first two books. However, I’m looking forward to learning more about this world and maybe why most people live in Hives. And I want more adventures with Amber and her team!

My rating: B

Have you read any books by this author?

Can’t Wait Wednesday: Hid from Our Eyes by Julia Spencer-Fleming

A favorite series–set in rural upstate New York with believable, realistic characters

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books set to publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

Hid From Our Eyes

by Julia Spencer-Fleming

Series: The Rev. Clare Ferguson & Russ Van Alstyne #9

Published by Minotaur Books

Publishing date: April 7, 2020

Genre: Mystery

336 pages

Synopsis: 1952. Millers Kill Police Chief Harry McNeil is called to a crime scene where a woman in a party dress has been murdered with no obvious cause of death.

1972. Millers Kill Police Chief Jack Liddle is called to a murder scene of a woman that’s very similar to one he worked as a trooper in the 50s. The only difference is this time, they have a suspect. Young Vietnam War veteran Russ van Alstyne found the body while riding his motorcycle and is quickly pegged as the prime focus of the investigation.

Present-day. Millers Kill Police Chief Russ van Alstyne gets a 911 call that a young woman has been found dead in a party dress, the same MO as the crime he was accused of in the 70s. The pressure is on for Russ to solve the murder before he’s removed from the case.

………………………….

One of my favorite series! I’ve waited for this book for a number of years since the last book was published in 2011. I’m very happy Julia Spencer-Fleming has written another book. It is one of my most anticipated books for 2020.

Sunday Post: October is here

Weekly meme to talk about books and a little about my personal life

Sunday-Post

Kimberly hosts the Sunday Post each week. I like to take part because it gives me an opportunity to look back at last week and forward to next week in both my personal life and my blog and book life! I also love to see what other people are doing and what books everyone is reading.

Personal life

October
One of our trees is beginning to show some autumn color!

Autumn is here! The days are cool and we have temperatures in the 40’s at night. I love it!

This is the month for pumpkins, pumpkin spice everything, spooky stories. Except I don’t buy pumpkins anymore, I don’t like pumpkin spice in everything and I don’t like being scared! Still I do love October. But I love it for the clear blue skies, the cool days and nights, for the leaves turning color, for the windy, rainy days when the leaves fall.

World Card Making Day

Yesterday was World Card Making Day and though I didn’t make any cards yesterday (I spent my time cleaning my craft room!) these are some of the cards I’ve made in the last few weeks.

Illinois and Indiana

Next week we’re headed to Illinois and Indiana. Our Indiana daughter is having a “For the Love of Fall” party next weekend so we’re going to help her get ready and then we’re going to celebrate fall with her! We’ll stop on the way and visit our Illinois daughter. She will be coming to the party, too.

Blog life

I wrote some posts this week and even wrote a few for the weeks ahead. I’ve also enjoyed catching up with blogging friends this week. It’s good to be back to regular blogging and I’m glad I moved from a self-hosted site to WordPress.com

Recent posts
Next week
  • Can’t-Wait Wednesday
  • Book review
  • Sunday Post

My books

What I’m reading
  • No Time Like the Past by Jodi Taylor
  • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
What I read recently
  • Echo in Onyx by Sharon Shinn
  • 84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff
Books I got recently

Say Goodbye for Now by Catherine Ryan Hyde (Kindle Unlimited)

Worthy by Catherine Ryan Hyde (Kindle Unlimited)

The Overstory by Richard Powers (ebook/library)

84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff (audiobook/library)

What have you been doing? What are your plans for next week?

October 2019 books on my list

books-on-my-list

I keep a list of all the books I might want to read and add to it as the year goes on. As each month comes along I create a list on my blog for others and for me to keep track of as the months go by.

I don’t buy all these books–since I already have way too many books to read and some of the new books are expensive. I’m trying to stick to a budget!

I hope people reading my post may find some new books to read. I also hope these people will point me toward books I might not know about!

October 1

I love the cover and I have a soft spot for cozy mysteries set at Christmas!

The Candy Cane Caper

by Josi S. Kilpack

Series: Culinary Mystery #13

Published by Shadow Mountain

Genre: Cozy Mystery, Christmas

320 pages

Synopsis: This Christmas, Sadie Hoffmiller Cunningham is making a list and checking it twice. For the first time since she and Pete married five years ago, their combined families are gathering for the holidays in Fort Collins, Colorado, for a party that would make Santa and Mrs. Claus proud.

She just has to bake the famous Cunningham Candy Cane Cake, make sure the looming snowstorm doesn’t derail everyone’s travel plans, and oh, yes, solve one teensy-tiny mystery before the big day.

Garth Nix is one of my husband’s favorite authors so I’ve added Nix’s newest book.

Angel Mage

by Garth Nix

Series: Unknown

Published by Katherine Tegen Books

Genre: YA Fantasy

560 pages

Synopsis: More than a century has passed since Liliath crept into the empty sarcophagus of Saint Marguerite, fleeing the Fall of Ystara. But she emerges from her magical sleep still beautiful, looking no more than nineteen, and once again renews her single-minded quest to be united with her lover, Palleniel, the archangel of Ystara.

A seemingly impossible quest, but Liliath is one of the greatest practitioners of angelic magic to have ever lived, summoning angels and forcing them to do her bidding.

Liliath knew that most of the inhabitants of Ystara died from the Ash Blood plague or were transformed into beastlings, and she herself led the survivors who fled into neighboring Sarance. Now she learns that angels shun the Ystaran’s descendants. If they are touched by angelic magic, their blood will turn to ash. They are known as Refusers, and can only live the most lowly lives.

But Liliath cares nothing for the descendants of her people, save how they can serve her. It is four young Sarancians who hold her interest: Simeon, a studious doctor-in-training; Henri, a dedicated fortune hunter; Agnez, an adventurous musketeer cadet; and Dorotea, an icon-maker and scholar of angelic magic. They are the key to her quest.

October 8

One of my favorite authors and series! I can’t wait to catch up with Duncan and Gemma’s lives!

A Bitter Feast

by Deborah Crombie

Series: Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James #18

Published by William Morrow

Genre: Mystery, Police Procedural

384 pages

Synopsis: Scotland Yard Detective Superintendent Duncan Kincaid and his wife, Detective Inspector Gemma James, have been invited for a relaxing weekend in the tranquil Cotswolds, one of Britain’s most beautiful and historic regions, famous for its rolling hills, sheep-strewn green meadows, golden cottages, and timeless villages that retain the spirit of old England.

Duncan, Gemma, and their children are guests at Beck House, the country estate belonging to the family of Melody Talbot, Gemma’s trusted detective sergeant. No ordinary farmers, the Talbots are wealthy and prominent with ties to Britain’s most powerful and influential. A centerpiece of this glorious fall getaway is a posh charity luncheon catered by up-and-coming chef Viv Holland. After more than a decade in London, Viv has returned to her native Glouscestershire, making a name for herself with her innovative, mouthwatering use of the local bounty. Attended by several dozen of the area’s well-to-do, as well as national food bloggers and restaurant critics, the event could make Viv a star.

I like the title of this and it sounds like a fun adventure story.

How Rory Thorne Destroyed the Multiverse

by K. Eason

Series: The Thorne Cronicles #1

Published by DAW

Genre: Science Fiction, fantasy

416 pages

Synopsis: Rory Thorne is a princess with thirteen fairy blessings, the most important of which is to see through flattery and platitudes. As the eldest daughter, she always imagined she’d inherit her father’s throne and govern the interplanetary Thorne Consortium.
 
Then her father is assassinated, her mother gives birth to a son, and Rory is betrothed to the prince of a distant world.
 
When Rory arrives in her new home, she uncovers a treacherous plot to unseat her newly betrothed and usurp his throne.

October 15

I love the cover and really like that this is science fiction set in a future we might see.

War Girls

by Tochi Onyebuchi

Series: War Girls #1

Published by Razorbill

Genre: YA Science Fiction

464 pages

Synopsis: The year is 2172. Climate change and nuclear disasters have rendered much of earth unlivable. Only the lucky ones have escaped to space colonies in the sky.

In a war-torn Nigeria, battles are fought using flying, deadly mechs and soldiers are outfitted with bionic limbs and artificial organs meant to protect them from the harsh, radiation-heavy climate. Across the nation, as the years-long civil war wages on, survival becomes the only way of life.

Two sisters, Onyii and Ify, dream of more. Their lives have been marked by violence and political unrest. Still, they dream of peace, of hope, of a future together.

I own several of the books in this series, but still need to read them. I like the covers of all the books in this series, too.

The Art of Theft

by Sherry Thomas

Series: Lady Sherlock #4

Published by Berkley

Genre: Historical Mystery

336 pages

Synopsis: As “Sherlock Holmes, consulting detective,” Charlotte Holmes has solved murders and found missing individuals. But she has never stolen a priceless artwork—or rather, made away with the secrets hidden behind a much-coveted canvas.
 
But Mrs. Watson is desperate to help her old friend recover those secrets and Charlotte finds herself involved in a fever-paced scheme to infiltrate a glamorous Yuletide ball where the painting is one handshake away from being sold and the secrets a bare breath from exposure
.

October 17

I’ve preordered this and am so looking forward to this spinoff of the author’s St. Mary’s series.

Doing Time

by Jodi Taylor

Series: The Time Police #1

Published by Headline

Genre: Science Fiction, Time Travel

480 pages

Synopsis: At some time in the future, the secret of time-travel became available to all. Chaos ensued as people sought to take advantage. Because there will always be nutters who want to change history…

And so the Time Police were formed. Internationally sanctioned thugs whose task it was to keep the timeline straight by any and all means possible. And they succeeded. The Time Wars are over. The Time Police won. But who will win the peace?

Doing Time follows three hapless new Time Police recruits – Jane, Luke and Matthew – as they try to navigate their first year on the beat. It’s all going to be fine. Obviously.

October 29

Most mysteries set near Christmas are cozys, but this does not sound very cozy!

White Elephant

by Trish Harnetiaux

Series: Unknown

Published by Simon & Schuster

Genre: Mystery, Christmas

240 pages

Synopsis: There are only a few rules in a White Elephant gift exchange: 1) Everyone brings a wrapped, unmarked gift. 2) Numbers are drawn to decide who picks first. 3) Gifts don’t need to be pricey—and often they’re downright tacky.

But things are a little different in Aspen, Colorado, at the office holiday party for the real estate firm owned by Henry Calhoun and his wife Claudine. Each Christmas sparks a contest among the already competitive staff to see who can buy the most coveted gift: the one that will get stolen the most times, the one that will prove just how many more commissions they earned that year than their colleagues. Designer sunglasses, deluxe spa treatments, front row concert tickets—nothing is off the table. And the staff is even more competitive this year as Zara, the hottest young pop star out of Hollywood, is in town and Claudine is determined to sell her the getaway home of her dreams.

Everyone is puzzled when a strange gift shows up in the mix: an antique cowboy statue. At least the sales agents are guessing it’s an antique—otherwise it’d be a terrible present. It’s certainly not very pretty or expensive-looking. In fact, the gift makes sense only to Henry and Claudine. The statue is the weapon Henry used to commit a murder years ago, a murder that helped start his company and a murder that Claudine helped cover up. She swore that no one would ever be able to find the statue or trace it to their crime. So which of their employees did? And why did they place it in the White Elephant? What could possibly be their endgame?

I don’t read very many young adult books, but the premise of this one sounds really interesting and the cover is so eye-catching.

The Light at the Bottom of the World

by London Shah

Series: The Light at the Bottom of the World #1

Published by Disney-Hyperion

Genre: YA Science Fiction

320 pages

Synopsis: At the end of the twenty-first century, the world has changed dramatically, but life continues one thousand feet below the ocean’s surface. In Great Britain, sea creatures swim among the ruins of Big Ben and the Tower of London, and citizens waver between fear and hope; fear of what lurks in the abyss, and hope that humanity will soon discover a way to reclaim the Earth.

Meanwhile, sixteen-year-old Leyla McQueen has her own problems to deal with. Her father’s been arrested, accused of taking advantage of victims of the Seasickness-a debilitating malaise that consumes people,often claiming their lives. But Leyla knows he’s innocent, and all she’s interested in is getting him back so that their lives can return to normal.

When she’s picked to race in the action-packed London Submersible Marathon, Leyla gets the chance to secure his freedom; the Prime Minister promises the champion whatever their heart desires. The race takes an unexpected turn, though, and presents her with an opportunity she never wanted.

What books are you excited about this month?