Books & Blog: August 27, 2015

Books of the Week:

 

  • Seize the Night, edited by Christopher Golden
  • Urban Allies, edited by Joseph Nacisse
  • Betrayals, Kelley Armstrong
  • Fire Touched, Patricia Briggs
  • A Man of Some Repute, Elizabeth Edmondson

 

I wish I’d written about Seize the Night a lot earlier, because I’m really tickled that my story, “Miss Fondevant,” was included. Chris’s idea was to assemble an anthology of stories about vampires as truly frightening creatures – no sparkles or redemption. I had to revise my vision of vampires, and this is my only story featuring a child as a protagonist. A real stretch, and I’m proud of it. There are stories by such popular writers as Seanan McGuire, Sherrilyn Kenyon, and Kelley Armstrong, among many other great entries.

 

Another anthology, Urban Allies, is somewhat akin. The ten stories feature unlikely pairings of each writer’s heroes. The story Christopher Golden and I wrote, “Blood for Blood,” is about an adventure shared by my Dahlia Lynley-Chivers and Chris’s Peter Octavian. I like the way it turned out. This is one anthology I read all the way through, and I’ll bet you will too. Writers can create great things outside of their comfort zones.

 

Betrayals the third of Kelley Armstrong’s Cainsville novels, and it’s full of revelations and character developments. After the terrible discovery that her parents are adoptive and that her birth parents were serial killers, Olivia Taylor-Jones has fled to Cainsville, a very strange town. She has become attached to a biker, Ricky, and a lawyer, Gabriel Walsh. But their relationship seems extremely complicated, and when Olivia finds out why, she faces a bigger challenge. In the surface part of Betrayals, when street kids in Chicago turn up dead, the police are trying to pin the crime on Ricky, the heir apparent to a biker gang.

 

I couldn’t believe I’d let a Patricia Briggs book get snowed under in the drifts of books on my TBR bookcase. Fire Touched is just as good as the other entries in this stellar series. Mercy and her (now) husband Adam, the leader of a werewolf pack, are called by the police to help stop the rampage of a troll. At great risk and cost, they do so. But their increased visibility is not a good thing in the eyes of the Marrok, the leader of all the US werewolves. Mercy has declared publicly that that Adam’s pack will protect the people of their area, including a changeling boy who has escaped from Faery. He has developed the power to control fire. He’s pretty scary, but Mercy promised . . .

 

A Man of Some Repute is a sort of faux golden-age mystery by Elizabeth Edmondson. I expected to see a copyright date much older than 2015. But it’s a delightful book, and a new classic. Hugo, badly wounded in the second World War, and Georgia, his teenage sister, have been invited to live in Selchester Castle while Huge begins his new job at a hush-hush facility in the area. Living at Selchester Castle, a formerly grand edifice, are a couple of family retainers and Freya Wryton, the disappeared Earl’s niece, who has her own mysterious project. Of course, the Earl turns up soon after Hugo takes residence . . . under the flagstones of the Old Chapel. This is a delightful book. Sadly, Ms Edmondson just recently passed away, but she has left some wonderful mysteries for us to read.

 

Blog

 

I have an idea. Let’s just vote tomorrow on the presidency.

Really, has there ever been a more sharply divided race in history? Is there anyone in the United States who does not know by now who is running for the office, and which candidate he/she will choose?

We could save our ears and our sanity if we got it over with sooner than November.

I’m just saying.

 

Charlaine Harris