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Review: The Castle in Cassiopeia

51jpctosuql-_sx331_bo1204203200_The Castle in Cassiopeia
by Mike Resnick
http://amzn.to/2uZF9R4
Series: DEAD ENDERS
Paperback: 285 pages
Publisher: Pyr (August 22, 2017)
ISBN-10: 1633882314
ISBN-13: 978-1633882317

My thoughts:
Space opera at it’s best. I enjoyed the previous books in the series The Fortress in Orion, and The Prison in Antares. I gave them 4 stars out of 5 and I’d give this book the same score.

SAM_0027As with the other books in the series, The Castle in Cassiopeia gets a little dialogue heavy and I hated the cover art but the book is excellent. It has an awesome pace and an entertaining story. If you can say anything about Resnick, you have to admit that he’s a great storyteller.

If you are new to the series, I think that you can jump straight into this book. Resnick sets up the story nicely. That being said, I think you’d get more out of it by starting with The Fortress in Orion.

It’s a fun summertime read. 4 stars out of 5.

Product description:
A crisis has arisen. On their first mission as a team, Pretorius and his Dead Enders kidnapped the real General Michkag and substituted a clone who had been raised and trained in the Democracy. But now they find that the clone likes being the most powerful man in the hundred-world Traanskei Coalititon—and having been raised on Earth, he knows how humans think and react.

This becomes a many-layered problem for Pretorius and what is left of his Dead Enders. As the only humans on a totally militarized alien world, they must first find where the best-guarded member of the enemy’s military – Michkag – is hiding and how many aliens, or regiments, or divisions, are guarding him, and then they must find a way past all his lines of defense to kill or capture him.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Pyr. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Posted by on August 15, 2017 in Book Reviews

 

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In my mailbox: The Castle in Cassiopeia

SAM_0027

Snacking on a peanut butter and peach jam sandwich while sipping earl grey tea. It’s a quiet night and I am listening to Star Trek on the H&I channel while reading Mike Resnick’s “The Castle in Cassiopeia”.

51jpctosuql-_sx331_bo1204203200_I want to thank the folks at Pyr for the free review copy. The book will be available August 22nd and I’m sure that Resnick fans will eat it up — like a peanut butter and peach jam sandwich.

Amazon:

http://amzn.to/2vhV1BF

A crisis has arisen. On their first mission as a team, Pretorius and his Dead Enders kidnapped the real General Michkag and substituted a clone who had been raised and trained in the Democracy. But now they find that the clone likes being the most powerful man in the hundred-world Traanskei Coalititon—and having been raised on Earth, he knows how humans think and react.

This becomes a many-layered problem for Pretorius and what is left of his Dead Enders. As the only humans on a totally militarized alien world, they must first find where the best-guarded member of the enemy’s military – Michkag – is hiding and how many aliens, or regiments, or divisions, are guarding him, and then they must find a way past all his lines of defense to kill or capture him.

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2017 in Barry rant

 

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In my mailbox: Raining Fire

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I want to thank the folks at Pyr for the free review copy of “Raining Fire” by Rajan Khanna. The book will be available July 18th. http://amzn.to/2t8MZbJ

5198b3rm72l-_sx331_bo1204203200_Ben Gold, former airship pilot has lost everything: his airship, his friends, and Miranda, the woman he loves. All that he has left is a thirst for revenge, a reckless plan to sate it, and some journal entries from Miranda to help ground him in the chaos. As he spirals out of control, he must survive old friends, new enemies, and of course Ferals, the mindless, violent victims of the global pandemic that shattered the world.

Meanwhile, the Cabal, a group of scientists on the floating city of Valhalla, are using the disease as a weapon while the militant Valhallans continue their raiding and destruction across the continent. When raiders from Valhalla massacre a town of innocents, Ben finds a new purpose in doing anything he can to undermine their power.

Ben must reunite with old friends and find new ones if he is to succeed. Can he overcome the forces arrayed against him in time to save himself—and maybe the world?

 
 

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Review: Black City Demon

51dw9g1hyel-_sx329_bo1204203200_Black City Demon
by Richard a. Knaak
Paperback: 363 pages
Publisher: Pyr (March 14, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1633882756
ISBN-13: 978-1633882751

Product description:
Since he became the guardian of the Gate between our world and Feirie sixteen hundred years ago, Nick Medea, once Saint George, has battled to keep the darkest Feirie–the Wyld–from invading the mortal plane. With the dragon an unwilling part of him, Nick maintains balance between realms, often at great cost to him and those nearest to him.

Nick and his ragtag confederates–including the shape-shifter Fetch and Nick’s reincarnated love, Claryce–have battled the Wyld, but mortals as sinister as the darkest Feirie. Now, with Prohibition in full swing and bootlegger wars embattling Chicago, a murderous evil born of the mortal world has turned its attention to the power of the Gate…and Nick himself.

Nick must turn again to his most untrustworthy ally: the dragon within. Yet even together they may not be enough to face what was once a man…but is now a creature even dragons may fear.

My thoughts:
Is there any surprise that I loved it? I mean really? I really enjoyed the feel of the 1930’s era ( something that I rally enjoyed about Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them)  and the film noir vibe throughout the book. Of course, the action is a plus. Since his Dragonlance days, Knaak has had a knack for story-telling with dragons.

my_photo-1Black City Demon is the sequel to Black City Saint and I suggest that you start out with Saint first. Knaak sets up Demon pretty well but I think that you would enjoy it much more after reading Saint.Black City Demon will be available in the middle of this month so there is plenty of time to read Black City Saint — if you devour books like I do.

My score? 5 stars out of 5 … Yes, it’s that good.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Pyr. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

 
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Posted by on March 2, 2017 in Book Reviews

 

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Book Review: Congress of Secrets by Stephanie Burgis

I made this for my Attention Earthlings blog but I’d like to copy it here:
51wzew8zcil-_sy346_In 1814, the Congress of Vienna has just begun. Diplomats battle over a new map of Europe, actors vie for a chance at glory, and aristocrats and royals from across the continent come together to celebrate the downfall of Napoleon…among them Lady Caroline Wyndham, a wealthy English widow. But Caroline has a secret: she was born Karolina Vogl, daughter of a radical Viennese printer. When her father was arrested by the secret police, Caroline’s childhood was stolen from her by dark alchemy.

Under a new name and nationality, she returns to Vienna determined to save her father even if she has to resort to the same alchemy that nearly broke her before. But she isn’t expecting to meet her father’s old apprentice, Michael Steinhüller, now a charming con man in the middle of his riskiest scheme ever.

The sinister forces that shattered Caroline’s childhood still rule Vienna behind a glittering façade of balls and salons, Michael’s plan is fraught with danger, and both of their disguises are more fragile than they realize. What price will they pay to the darkness if either of them is to survive?


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Pyr. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2017 in Book Reviews

 

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Review: The Doctor and the Dinosaurs

A review of Mike Resnick’s “The Doctor and the Dinosaurs” published by Pyr.
http://www.pyrsf.com/DoctorandDinosaurs.html

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1616148616/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1616148616&linkCode=as2&tag=barryssandcastl

mailbox111813Series: A Weird West Tale

Paperback: 300 pages
Publisher: Pyr
ISBN-10: 1616148616
ISBN-13: 978-1616148614

Book description:
The time is April, 1885. Doc Holliday lies in bed in a sanitarium in Leadville, Colorado, expecting never to leave his room again. But the medicine man and great chief Geronimo needs him for one last adventure. Renegade Comanche medicine men object to the newly-signed treaty with Theodore Roosevelt. They are venting their displeasure on two white men who are desecrating tribal territory in Wyoming. Geronimo must protect the men or renege on his agreement with Roosevelt. He offers Doc one year of restored health in exchange for taking on this mission.

Welcome to the birth of American paleontology, spearheaded by two brilliant men, Edward Drinker Cope and Othniel Charles Marsh, two men whose genius is only exceeded by their hatred for each other’s guts.

Now, with the aid of Theodore Roosevelt, Cole Younger, and Buffalo Bill Cody, Doc Holliday must save Cope and Marsh not only from the Comanches, not only from living, breathing dinosaurs, but from each other. And that won’t be easy.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Pyr. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

 
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Posted by on January 21, 2014 in Steampunk Book Review

 

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Review: The Osiris Curse

The Osiris Curse: A Tweed & Nightingale Adventure
by Paul Crilley

osiris curseAge Range: 12 and up
Grade Level: 7 and up
Series: A Tweed & Nightingale Adventure
Hardcover: 290 pages
Publisher: Pyr
ISBN-10: 1616148578
ISBN-13: 978-1616148577

Available at Amazon
The Osiris Curse: A Tweed & Nightingale Adventure

(Barry’s score 3 stars out of 5)

My thoughts:

Barry says — good.

Clearly, The Osiris Curse: A Tweed & Nightingale Adventure is targeted at the younger teenage crowd and should make a good stocking-stuffer this Christmas for the young steampunk enthusiast.  Even this 55 year-old enjoyed portions of this book.

It was a pleasant read that made me feel a little nostalgic for Scooby Doo.  I imagine that I would have loved this book at age 10.  The Osiris Curse: A Tweed & Nightingale Adventure has some cute ideas and dialogue.

I give The Osiris Curse: A Tweed & Nightingale Adventure 3 stars out of 5 and recommend it for the kids.

Product description:

When Nikola Tesla is murdered and blueprints for his super weapons are stolen, Tweed and Nightingale are drawn into a global cat and mouse chase with his killers. What’s more, it seems that the people who shot Nikola Tesla are the same people responsible for Octavia’s mother’s disappearance. As the two cases intertwine, Tweed and Nightingale’s investigations lead them to a murdered archeologist and a secret society called The Hermetic Order of Osiris. Fleeing the cult’s wrath, they go undercover on the luxury airship, The Albion, setting out on her maiden voyage to Tutankhamen’s View, a five star hotel built in the hollowed-out and refurbished Great Pyramid of Giza.

In Egypt, the duo begin to unravel the terrible truth behind Tesla’s death, a secret so earth-shattering that if revealed it would mean rewriting the entire history of the world. But if the cult’s plans aren’t stopped, Britain may lose the future.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Pyr. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2013 in Steampunk Book Review

 

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In my mailbox

In my mailbox

mailbox091013

I slipped up and forgot to show your the latest title that I received from Titan Books, Lovegrove’s “Sherlock Holmes – The Stuff of Nightmares.” The book is available now and looks like something the Holmes enthusiast will enjoy. I can wait to tear into it.

I also received a copy of “23 Years on Fire: A Cassandra Kresnov Novel” from the good folks at Pyr. I don’t really think that it’s my thing but I may try it out if I have time. This title is available TODAY …

Product description:

Cassandra Kresnov–a highly advanced hunter-killer android–returns to face down a rogue government’s plot to eliminate free will.

Commander Cassandra Kresnov has her hands full. She must lead an assault against the Federation world of Pyeongwha, where a terrible sociological phenomenon has unleashed hell against the civilian population. Then she faces the threat from a portion of League space known as New Torah, in which a ruthless regime of surviving corporations are building new synthetic soldiers but taking the technology in alarming directions.

On the Torahn world of Pantala, Sandy encounters betrayal, crisis, and conspiracy on a scale previously unimaginable. Most challenging of all, she also meets three young street kids who stir emotions in her she didn’t think she was capable of. Can the Federation’s most lethal killer afford unexpected sentiment? What will be the cost if she is forced to choose between them and her mission, not only to her cause, but to her soul?

 
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Posted by on September 10, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Review: Boneyards by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Boneyards  Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Boneyards Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Boneyards
by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
Paperback: 301 pages
Publisher: Pyr (January 24, 2012)
ISBN-10: 1616145439
ISBN-13: 978-1616145439

Product description: (PYR)

The novellas in the Diving universe have won three Asimov’s Readers Choice Awards.

When multiple Hugo Award winner Kristine Kathryn Rusch decided to put her stamp on classic space opera, readers wanted more. Now Rusch’s popular character Boss returns in a whole new adventure, one that takes her far outside her comfort zone, to a sector of space she’s never seen before.

Searching for ancient technology to help her friends find answers to the mystery of their own past, Boss ventures into a place filled with evidence of an ancient space battle, one the Dignity Vessels lost.

Meanwhile, the Enterran Empire keeps accidentally killing its scientists in a quest for ancient stealth tech. Boss’s most difficult friend, Squishy, has had enough. She sneaks into the Empire and destroys its primary stealth tech research base. But an old lover thwarts her escape, and now Squishy needs Boss’s help.

Boss, who is a fugitive in the Empire. Boss, who knows how to make a Dignity Vessel work. Boss, who knows that Dignity Vessels house the very technology that the Empire is searching for.

Should Boss take a Dignity Vessel to rescue Squishy and risk losing everything to the Empire? Or should Boss continue on her mission for her other friends and let Squishy suffer her own fate?

Filled with battles old and new, scientific dilemmas, and questions about the ethics of friendship, Boneyards looks at the influence of our past on our present and the risks we all take when we meddle in other people’s lives.

Boneyards is space opera the way it was meant to be: exciting, fast moving, and filled with passion.

My thoughts:

I’m sure that I would have gotten a lot more out of “Boneyards” had I read the first two books. The novel shifts gears a little more than I liked with two interconnected stories and flashbacks. One story is about Boss and the other half of the tale is about a character named Squishy. Boss is basically one of your questing for profit stories and Squishy is your basic infiltration story.

I enjoyed the Boss character and I enjoyed much of her portion of the book. The Squishy portion simply had to many flasbacks and the bouncing storyline should have been handled much better.

For the most part, I liked the book. However, I would suggest that you read the other books in the series before tackling this one. I would recommend it for the scifi space opera fan.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Pyr. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

 
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Posted by on February 5, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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