Archive for March, 2012
Today is Shelf Candy day! This is a meme hosted by the lovely Five Alarm Books in which the cover art of a book is highlighted and celebrated along with its artist. This is my second edition of the weekly meme, and it is quickly becoming one of my favorite things to do.
WHY I LOVE THIS COVER:
The moment I saw this cover I loved it. As a big fan of The Disillusionist Trilogy, I was excited to see a novella about the enigmatic and reckless Simon. What I appreciated about the artwork was its subtle romanticism coupled with a sense of vulnerability that you would not expect from the character. The textured background, brooding hero, and beautiful colors combined to create a cover I thought was pretty powerful.
The person responsible for its creation is the artist Anne Cain. Based in the Southwest, Anne is a celebrated artist with extensive experience in publishing and illustration.
Let me introduce you to the wonderful Anne Cain!
SWR: Can you tell me a little bit about your art background – your training and development as an artist and how you got into doing book covers specifically?
I’ve been drawing my whole life, and being an artist was one of my earliest dreams as a kid (right after being a paleontologist and crime fighter). I’m trained in studio art and have a BFA in drawing, but I fully embrace graphic and digital arts as well. A friend introduced me to the world of epublishing a few years ago, and I got into doing covers in addition to other illustration projects.
SWR: What techniques do you use to create your covers? Traditional painting and sketching or is it more computer based?
My approach to cover art varies as much as the genres of the books I work on. I try to be a jack-of-all-trades and can switch styles/techniques depending on the project. So, for example, a YA fantasy with steampunk elements might call for an illustrated cover, while a dark paranormal romance novel needs a mixed media image with photos and digital paint. That kind of versatility is fun for me as an artist since I have more options to play with while creating the image.
SWR: Tell me the story of how you got involved with Carolyn Crane’s “Devil’s Luck”? Had you read the series before and what was it like working with her?
I had a little luck of my own in creating the cover for “Devil’s Luck”. Carolyn herself approached me with info on her story and characters, and I was hooked. She was amazing to work with, not only because she’s a great person, but because she let me have fun with the art. Creative freedom is something any artist appreciates!
SWR: The character of Simon is a bit of a mystery and tends towards the flamboyant in his sense of style. What I love about your cover is that feeling of Simon being laid bare (both literally and figuratively) and he retains that sense of mystery while hinting at something deeper than what one might expect from the character. I think that fits the story perfectly. I also like its subtlety – he is depicted as a romantic figure but it doesn’t have a typical romance feel. How did you develop the concept for the cover and how much collaboration with Carolyn was involved with its design? (and I promise my next question won’t have a paragraph lead in)
LOL! Well, it’s a fantastic question. I know there’s a lot of imagery out there that romance novels rely on to help promote the content of the book. The bare-chested hunk and, to use an older example, the “clinch” pose, are common visual conventions that let readers know at first glance, “This book is sexy, romantic, and you want to read it now!” The trick as a cover artist is to acknowledge those conventions while making sure the uniqueness of that particular story is demonstrated. With “Devil’s Luck” the emphasis had to be on Simon because he’s such a fabulous character and we wanted to capture his essence—especially with his tattoos!—but we also had to be careful to not overpower the ‘romance element’. Carolyn and I discussed whether or not to portray him with more of a nod to his flashy sense of fashion, but we decided that less is more, and that resulted in the cover where we get a sense of Simon “being laid bare”.
SWR: What is the one thing about Simon that you felt must be translated on the cover?
Strength, physically of course, but also that intensity of spirit and recklessness.
SWR: If you are familiar with the series, what other characters from the Disillusionist world would you like to bring to life on a cover?
I’ve read Double Cross, and I love Justine. If Carolyn were to pen another story with her, I’m claiming dibs on the chance to make some art! *lol*
SWR: Looking at your body of cover work, I would say that subtle yet edgy and romantic are words that come to my mind when trying to describe it. The layered backgrounds are also interesting and seem to be a signature of your style. How would you describe your style?
I love texture and color and intensity. I like creating images which hopefully make the viewer pause for a moment or two just to enjoy looking. Rich backgrounds with just a hint of abstraction enhance that viewing experience. So I would definitely describe my style as “atmospheric”.
SWR: What artists have influenced your work?
So many! Drew Struzan, James Jean, Paul Cadmus, Cliff Nielsen, Brom, Julie Bell…those are just a few that popped into my head on the spot. Never underestimate where and from whom an artist will draw inspiration—if art is a language, we pick up turns of phrases and colloquialisms from everywhere.
SWR: How has the rise of the eBook format impacted the art of book cover design?
Definitely more consideration is given to how the artwork will reproduce in teeny-weeny thumbnail sizes. We also have to be mindful of how the art might look on black and white screens, in the case of some Kindles. Fundamentally, though, the spirit of the design stays the same: make a piece of art that’s eye-catching and awesome!
SWR: If you could create a cover for any one book, what would it be and why?
I’m going to throw something out there which might be totally from left field, but it would be the bee’s knees to create the cover to a new edition of The Dark Phoenix Saga. I loooove comics, and that graphic novel is one of my all-time fave X-men books.
SWR: Are there any up-coming projects you would like to tell us about?
On the cover art front, I’m excited to be working with a number of excellent companies. I recently added Amazon Publishing to my client list, and I’m getting ready to work with C.E. Murphy on some art projects which is going to be fun. I might also have a short sketchbook coming out from Dreamspinner Press later this year. For updates on projects and convention appearances, please check out my DeviantArt page or hit me up on Twitter!
Please take a look at some of Anne’s other beautiful work:
A big thank you to Anne for her interview! Please take a moment to check out her site and follow up with her on Twitter. And read the book! The Disillusionists Trilogy is one of the most original UF series out there and the artwork on Devil’s Luck highlights that!
The featured blogs this week are:
Please stop by these cool blogs to say hello and click the button above to learn how to join in on the fun!
Q: Do you read one book at a time or do you switch back and forth between two or more?
I am totally book monogamous. I can count on one hand the number of times I have read more than one book at once. And maybe the only time I did this was in college and grad school when I had school reading and personal reading. Other than that, I am a one book at a time girl. I also have the bad habit of not being able to DNF a book. For some reason, I can’t break this habit. I must finish, even if it is something I don’t like. I always hold onto a tiny hope that something will happen to redeem the book in my eyes. Life is too short to waste on a bad book. I really need to stop that particular habit!
What about you – more than one book at a time?
If you decide you’d like to follow me, following via RSS, Linky or email is preferred. Regardless, thanks for stopping by and happy reading!
(Please click the button above to learn more about Waiting on Wednesday and how to participate)
Last year I read Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal. And I loved it. As a die hard Jane Austen fan, I was immediately intrigued by a book that could combine a Jane Austen-like voice and world with fantastical elements like magic and glamour. What I appreciated about the book was that while it is most definitely in the same vein as Jane Austen, Kowal managed to create something that was uniquely hers and that stood apart from the mass of Jane Austen inspired novels on the market. So of course when I found out there was a sequel in the works…I waited for its publication date with bated breath. And I am still waiting since it does not come out until April 10th. At least I only have a little while to go.
(NOTE: Don’t read the synopsis below if you plan on reading the first book, Shades of Milk and Honey, there is a bit of a spoiler there).
Mary Robinette Kowal stunned readers with her charming first novel Shades of Milk and Honey, a loving tribute to the works of Jane Austen in a world where magic is an everyday occurrence. This magic comes in the form of glamour, which allows talented users to form practically any illusion they can imagine. Shades debuted to great acclaim and left readers eagerly awaiting its sequel. Glamour in Glass continues following the lives of beloved main characters Jane and Vincent, with a much deeper vein of drama and intrigue. In the tumultuous months after Napoleon abdicates his throne, Jane and Vincent go to Belgium for their honeymoon. While there, the deposed emperor escapes his exile in Elba, throwing the continent into turmoil. With no easy way back to England, Jane and Vincent’s concerns turn from enjoying their honeymoon…to escaping it.Left with no outward salvation, Jane must persevere over her trying personal circumstances and use her glamour to rescue her husband from prison . . . and hopefully prevent her newly built marriage from getting stranded on the shoals of another country’s war.
What are you waiting on this week?
Today, I am excited to share with you an interview I did with Dalilah S. Dawson, the author of the magical new novel, Wicked As They Come. If you’ve read my review then you know I truly enjoyed this book (review). It is original, sexy and sweetly romantic. And a fantastic introduction to the new world of Sang and the Blud novels.
Delilah has a B.A. in Studio Art from the University of Georgia and before writing she was an art instructor and arts administrator. She is also the associate editor for Cool Mom Picks. Delilah describes herself as “an artist, wife, mom, goof, geek, and cupcake enthusiast.” I would also add “great writer.”
Please enjoy the interview!
SWR: Congratulations on the publication of your first book! Can you describe the moment you found out the book was being published?
I was in the carpool lane, waiting to pick up my kids from preschool. My cell rang—my agent’s number. I went on spazz alert and almost screamed SQUEE into the phone, because my agent had never called me unannounced before. Turned it out it was an offer, and not just for one book—for a three-book series. I found out about the other two publishing houses’ interest via email, but that first phone call was amazing. The auction occurred while we were in Athens, GA for a show by The Civil Wars, and the whole week was magical.
SWR: I love the cover of Wicked As They Come. What is the process between an author and an artist/illustrator in creating the cover? And as an artist yourself, did you have a difficult time handing over the reins to someone else?
For this first book, it was actually a huge surprise. I hadn’t heard from my editor in months, and then it just dropped into my inbox. At first, I was shocked, because it wasn’t at all what I had expected—but then it grew on me. There were a few changes that needed to be made, but my editor and the artist were extremely accommodating. For example, the original version had Criminy in leather jeans with a zipper, which took away from the steampunk/Victorian look. I love the new stance and more period-correct pants, and I really love the touches of red. Tony Mauro is a super nice guy and an amazingly talented artist, and I hope he does all my covers!
SWR: World-building is key in Fantasy/PNR books. What was the inspiration behind the world of Tish and Criminy Stain?
Two things came together for the inspiration of Sang: Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the album Like Vines by The Hush Sound. You can hear a little of Spike in Criminy, and lots of scenes and lines come from that album. I know it sounds cliché, but I dreamed the scene where Tish wakes up in Sang and sees Criminy for the first time and thinks of him as “an extra naughty version of Mr. Darcy.” And then the rest of the world just happened through logic and imagination.
SWR: Can you tell me a little bit about the inspiration for the characters themselves? And how did you come up with the name “Criminy Stain”?
Criminy arrived in my head fully formed. What he looked like, his name, how he talked, his mannerisms. I don’t know if my subconscious just wanted to communicate its ideal man or what, but he just happened, and I never questioned it. My editor once remarked that his name was odd, and I admitted that she could change it if she wanted, but… I guess he got his way in the end. Tish took more work. She began as a wife with a baby, then became just a wife, then we got rid of her husband and made her a damaged but resilient heroine with a special relationship with her dying grandmother. I like her best this way—she has a good mix of kindness and spitfire.
SWR: If you could cast any actors to play Tish and Criminy who would you cast?
The question is so difficult! If I had control over space and time—or a Tardis—I would grab Ashley Judd or Sandra Bullock from about 1996 and Jonathan Rhys Meyers from 2004. As for right now, I can’t think of an actress who can be charming but tough, Southern but not saccharine, curvy and not outrageously, instantly gorgeous. And as for Criminy, the actor would have a lot to live up to, is all I’m saying.
SWR: I love that you are developing fragrances inspired by the characters. Nothing transports you to a place and time like a scent. How did you come up with this idea? When and where will they be available?
I’ve been a huge fan of artisan perfumes for over a decade now. Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab led me to Villainess Soaps, and Brooke and I have been internet pals for years. Scent plays a big part in my writing, especially Criminy’s scent, which plays an important role in the plot. He’s described as smelling like berries and red wine and crushed green things, and I think Brooke captured that amazingly well. I wear Criminy almost every day and will be the first in line to buy a huge bottle! It was one of my dreams, to smell my characters, and I’m just so lucky that she liked the book and was game. The quality and uniqueness of her soaps and perfume oils is astounding, and her packaging is right up my alley.
SWR: Is there a specific book or author that has inspired you the most?
I was raised to think that romance books were silly, but then a good friend of mine suggested Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, back in 2001 or so. I picked it up at a used book store when I had the flu and stayed up all night to read it. It taught me that romance isn’t just bodice ripping—that the story can be well crafted and beautifully written. That the characters can be fully-formed and have the capacity to grow as people. That the history can be fascinating and well-researched. And that you don’t have to use a single euphemism for anyone’s junk, something that always takes me out of the story. More recently, Gail Carriger and Deanna Raybourne have been a great inspiration for how to write exactly what you want to write, defy genre, and treat your readers with love and respect.
SWR: What do you read in your spare time?
Mostly YA and paranormal romance. I have two children under five, so what I need most is an escape. I don’t want to read anything that makes me cry. Although I read Maggie Stiefvater’s The Scorpio Races recently and was blown away by the power of the story and the lyricism of the writing. That one and The Night Circus are not my usual sort of vampire/werewolf/dystopia fodder, but they both drew me into an entirely new world where I wanted to stay.
SWR: As a blogger, I am always amazed at the power of the internet and social media. How do you think they’ve impacted writing and publishing?
Honestly, I don’t know if I’d even be published without the internet. I learned everything I know about querying and agents and editors online. I love the challenge of brevity and humor on Twitter. And I like that if you follow people you like, you find out about new things that they like that you like, too, from book recommendations to bands to interesting news stories that can spark story ideas. And the support is great, too, both for failures and triumphs. The three idol authors I’ve listed—Diana Gabaldon, Deanna Raybourne, and Gail Carriger—have all tweeted me before, and I was so excited!
SWR: Finally, if you could take any character from a favorite book or series and drop him/her into the world of Tish and Criminy, who would it be and why?
I think Gail Carriger’s Ivy Tunstall would have a fantastic time in the Sangish version of London. The humans have to keep almost all their skin covered, and huge, weird hats are all the rage. Maybe she could be a costumer with Criminy’s Clockwork Caravan, too, since she likes adventure and doesn’t mind odd people.
Thanks so much for having me! I hope y’all enjoy the book! ~Delilah
Wicked As They Come can be purchased at
Take a listen to the band that helped inspire the creation of the world of Sang, The Hush Sound:
I hope you enjoyed this interview. Happy Reading!
TITLE: Wicked As They Come
AUTHOR: Delilah S. Dawson
SERIES: Blud #1
PUBLISHER: Pocket Books
PUBLICATION DATE: March 27, 2012
This book was received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Have you ever heard of a Bludman? They’re rather like you and me—only more fabulous, immortal, and mostly indestructible. (They’re also very good kissers.)
Delilah S. Dawson’s darkly tempting debut drops her unsuspecting heroine into a strange faraway land for a romantic adventure that’s part paranormal, part steampunk . . . and completely irresistible.
When Tish Everett forces open the ruby locket she finds at an estate sale, she has no idea that a deliciously rakish Bludman has cast a spell just for her. She wakes up in a surreal world, where Criminy Stain, the dashing proprietor of a magical traveling circus, curiously awaits. At Criminy’s electric touch, Tish glimpses a tantalizing future, but she also foresees her ultimate doom. Before she can decide whether to risk her fate with the charming daredevil, the locket disappears, and with it, her only chance to return home. Tish and Criminy battle roaring sea monsters and thundering bludmares, vengeful ghosts and crooked Coppers in a treacherous race to recover the necklace from the evil Blud-hating Magistrate. But if they succeed, will Tish forsake her fanged suitor and return to her normal life, or will she take a chance on an unpredictable but dangerous destiny with the Bludman she’s coming to love?
This book was seriously sexy and surprisingly sweet; one part madcap adventure, and two parts otherworldly romance. Delilah S. Dawson creates an original and magical world with her new Blud series and I, for one, am looking forward to reading her next installment.
One of Dawson’s major strengths with this novel is the original world she creates in a genre that has really done it all. An unusual locket transports Tish Everett, an in-home care nurse rebuilding her life after an abusive relationship, into another world, a world called Sang. It is a world like ours with little twists that make it dramatically different. For instance, there are towns called London and Manchester, but people have names like Criminy Stain and Tabitha Scowl; book titles include Dignity and Discrimination, The Collected Works of Willem Sharkspear, and Peace and War. It is a world where Bludmen exist – a people that are vampire-like but are not dead, they drink blood (but no longer directly from people), and they are not immortal but live longer and are stronger than Pinkies (humans like you and me). And they are essentially second-class citizens in a world where their “prey” lives in fear of them and persecutes and ghettoizes them. Throw in steampunk elements like pill shaped submarines and clockworks (mechanical animals) and you have a world that is so surreal, so very different yet with a touch of normalcy, that you can understand how Tish can think she is in a dream. Oh, and did I mention the Bludbunnies and Bludrats? I loved the originality of this world and felt it was very different from anything I’d read. I particularly liked the twist on the image of the vampire. The fact that they can be killed, but not easily, and while powerful, were not in power. This was a nice original twist to the vampire mythos I normally read in UF/PNR novels. This was good world-building and it made me curious to see where Dawson can take it.
“I’m not scared,” I said. “It’s my dream. Nothing can harm me.”
“A dream? he said, one arched eyebrow raised. “You think this is a dream?”
“I know it is,” I said coolly.
He grinned. “Sweetheart, you couldn’t conjure me if you tried.”
Criminy Stain is a great character. A Bludman-magician-traveling carnival act owner, he helps Tish come into her own and gives her the adventure she needs and craves. His is a good mixture of tender sweetness but with hints at a capacity for violence. It was a nice mix that kept an edge to the budding but unsure romance between the two. He also says sexy things like the exchange above and has some lines that made me laugh out loud.
“I don’t know,” I said, exasperated. “What else do you have in your wacked-out world? Heat sensors? Mine fields? Dirigibles? Booby traps? Machine guns? Shrink rays? What?”
“Aside from dirigibles, which are rather expensive and rare outside of trade routes, most of what you just said made no sense whatsoever,” he said, as delighted as a child hearing a foreign language for the first time. “But it all sounds very dangerous. And fun. Especially the part about the boobies.”
And I always like relatable female characters in UF/PNR novels. Don’t get me wrong – I love a good kick ass heroine who has ninja-like fighting skills, a doctorate in nuclear science, a sharp wit, and looks like a goddess. Love that. But every once in a while, I just like a normal woman that comes into her own and Tish was that woman. While she does discover she has a special gift in the world of Sang, it is her intelligence and growing confidence that help propel her forward in this new world.
The romance between Criminy and Tish is sweet and sexy…and unsure. They feel an immediate connection but Tish desperately wants to maintain her independence in the wake of her failed abusive relationship. Enter Casper who gives Criminy some competition for her heart. Steamy scenes are very well-written, hit the right note, and come at the perfect time (pun intended).
Finally, there were good, unexpected twists in this story. I don’t want to go into too much detail but there are other people Tish meets who are not of Sang, and the paperback edition at least includes a chapter teaser from book two that has me very curious about where Dawson plans on taking us in this new world.
I give Wicked As They Come a solid four howls for its sweet and sexy romantic elements, original world, and great characters.
Today I am happy to participate in the meme Shelf Candy Saturday, hosted by Five Alarm Books, in which the cover art of a book is highlighted and celebrated along with its artist.
WHY I LOVE THIS COVER:
Tony Mauro did a fantastic job with this cover. I love it for two reasons – the mystery of it and its typographical treatment. The featured character is Criminy Stain, a magical ringmaster of a traveling circus and a Bludman, a vampire-like being. I love that Criminy is covered in shadow, that his face is somewhat obscured so that you have to look closely to make out his features. This treatment suits his character perfectly because he himself is a bit of a mystery – at once gentle and attentive to Tish, the heroine of the story, while at the same time hinting at his capacity for violence.
I also adore the type treatment – mainly how the “W” in “Wicked” doubles as blood splattered fangs. Lest you forget this is the tale of a Bludman, that “W” reminds you.
INTERVIEW WITH TONY MAURO:
I am excited to share with you an interview I did with Tony on his work for this featured cover. Tony is a graduate of the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and, after moving to Los Angeles from Buffalo in 1994, has become a celebrated illustrator focusing on movie posters, book covers, and video game box art. His past projects range from posters for The X-Files and Pirates of the Caribbean, to book covers for Chicagoland Vampires, Guild Hunters, and Sunshine (some of my favorite works). He recently moved back to Buffalo in order to concentrate more on his fantasy art.
Without further ado, here is my interview with Tony.
SWR: You have worked extensively on both movie posters and book cover art. For films you usually have an actor or actress to base your piece on but for a book you really only have the text. What is your process for taking that text and bringing the characters to life in your art?
My advantage here is that most authors go to great lengths to be as descriptive as possible when they introduce their characters so that certainly helps. My first step and always the best case scenario is to read the book before I do anything. Unfortunately, because of my workload, I don’t always have time to read the whole book but the first few chapters are usually the most descriptive because that’s when the author is introducing the characters and setting the tone and environment for the story. I’m also given a synopsis from the publisher at the beginning of the project which will detail the setting and character that they are interested in seeing portrayed on the cover.
SWR: How much collaboration exists between the cover artist, the author, and the publisher in designing a book cover?
Most people would be surprised that there is no contact between the author and the cover artist at all. The publisher will often coordinate with the author and discuss the cover concepts before they contact me. All of my communication is with the in-house art director at the publishing house. In most cases they already have a good idea of what they are looking for before they contract me. A lot of these are series books so I’ve already established the style and look for the series on the past covers so our only task is to present a new scenario for our hero.
SWR: Does most of your work happen on the computer or with traditional sketching and painting?
I was a traditional airbrush illustrator for the first 5-7 years of my career before crossing over to the computer. In the beginning I still did a lot of sketching and would even traditionally paint certain elements of the piece and then scan them in to finish up the details on the computer. Nowadays I do everything from beginning to end on the computer and photography has become a huge part of what I do.
SWR: Can you tell me specifically about how you created the cover for Wicked As They Come? What was your process and inspiration?
My only direction on this one was to focus on the main character and to keep him mysterious. Obviously in this case the clothing and personal style of Criminy Stain play a huge role in defining the character. I was told to think “freak show ring master” which I thought was a great visual to play with. His tailcoat was described in a few passages from the book so I found a jacket online that fit the bill and got that ordered in time for the shoot. I’m building quite a collection of steampunk style clothing in my photo studio. I experimented with a few different lighting set-ups that would cast some interesting shadows over him and once I picked the shot I liked I started working it up in the layout and experimenting with different settings to place him in that would define the genre as well as create some depth.
SWR: I love the mysteriousness and danger hinted at on the cover of Wicked As They Come. What is the one characteristic of Criminy Stain that you wanted to make sure translated from the page to your design?
His personal style was the thing that was most important to try and get across. When you’re dealing with one single image to present a character the only thing you can really play with to define who they are is how they’re dressed and whatever subtle expression they will have on their face. The determination and intensity in his eyes as well as the shadow falling across his face are what gave him the edge that he needed to give him that dangerous and mysterious quality.
SWR: Since this is the first of a trilogy, was there an overall concept you created that would follow through to the other books in the series?
The biggest carry through for this series will be the style of the type treatment I used. We usually try and tackle each title in a series individually because even though we want them to look similar enough to be viewed as a series when they’re together, it’s very important that each book stand on its own.
SWR: Who are artists that inspire your work?
There are several people that inspire me for different reasons. I’ve always been a huge Norman Rockwell fan, stylistically my work is completely different than his but I admire his ability to tell a story with one singular image. Of the contemporary artists out there I really love Brom’s work and often look to his stuff for inspiration.
SWR: If you could create a cover for any one book what book would that be and why?
I’m a huge James Patterson fan so I’ve always said I’d love to work on his Alex Cross series books. I’ve read all of them so I definitely have a connection to his characters as well as the tone of his books.
SWR: You’ve created some of my favorite covers – Chicagoland Vampires, Sunshine, the last two Guild Hunter covers, and now, Wicked As They Come – can you give us any hints about your upcoming cover work?
I do have lots of things coming down the pipeline but I really shouldn’t discuss them until they are released. Confidentiality is very important in such a competitive marketplace. I’m working with several different competing publishers and loose lips sink ships I can tell you that I’ve done several survivalist books recently that will be hitting shelves soon. That category as well as the steampunk category are really blowing up.
Take a look at some of Tony’s cool fantasy work, some of which has not yet been posted on his site.
You can see more of Tony’s work at his website: http://www.darkdayproductions.com/
Special thanks to Tony Mauro for joining me here on She-Wolf Reads!
Please stop by tomorrow for my Wicked As They Come review!
Q: What is the longest book you’ve read? What are your favorite 600+ page reads?
The longest books I’ve read may have been George R.R. Martin’s Song of Fire and Ice series. I’ve read all of them with the exception of the latest book, A Dance with Dragons, that was released last year. These books are all well over 600 pages – I think Storm of Swords weighed in at around 1200 pages.
I love this series and I love the HBO show that is based on it. Before the first season aired, I tore through the books on a marathon, binge reading, obsessed craze and as a result, was a bit burned out when the latest installment was released. I have it on my Kindle and I’m waiting for the right moment to start it. If you haven’t read these, I highly recommend them. I’ve seen and heard many people compare the series to Lord of the Rings, which I’ve also read, but I totally disagree. I would say that if you like the political machinations of the film Elizabeth and the intrigue of the Showtime series The Tudors coupled with epic battles, multiple POVs, a smattering of sex, and some fantastical elements thrown in (dragons, mysticism, etc), then this is a series you’ll like.
Winter is coming…check out the trailer for the upcoming season of Game of Thrones. April 1st. Yes!
Click the button above to learn more about Breaking the Spine’s Waiting on Wednesday meme!
Okay, I must have been living under a rock because I just found out about this book and now I desperately want to read it:
He’s a fallen angel. She’s a rockabilly reporter. Together they must solve a deadly string of murders plaguing the mortal and the immortal worlds.
Griffin Shaw used to be a PI, but that was over fifty years ago when gumshoes hoofed the streets . . . and he was still alive. Now he’s a Centurion, an angel who assists other murdered souls through their journey to the afterlife. But while Shaw might be an angel … he’s no saint. Haunted by the mysterious events surrounding his own death, he seizes a chance to wreak some vengeance when he witnesses a deadly attack on journalist Katherine “Kit” Craig.
Joining forces, the unlikely avengers take to the streets, hunting a killer whose trail of bodies stretches across Las Vegas and into an immortal netherworld. It is a dangerous trek that lead them into the darkest corners of Sin City and into the heart of an evil conspiracy extending beyond the lights of the Strip that could destory them both.
But destruction isn’t the only threat Griffin faces. The closer he gets to Kit, the more he finds himself bewitched by her mortal charms. Can he resist falling under her spell? And does he want to?
I don’t know about you, but I think this sounds really interesting and I love the fact that the mystery seems to play a big part of the story. And the cover is beautiful. I. MUST. READ. THIS.
What new release are you waiting for?
One of my favorite authors, Gail Carriger, has a new series coming next year and she recently revealed the new ARC cover art. Please click the cover to go to her website to learn more about it! This is not going to be the final look for the release but it is still pretty darn cool.
What do you think? Cool, no?
Here is this week’s question:
Q: What is the best book you’ve read in the last month? What is the worst book you’ve read in the last month?
Well, I can’t say that I’ve read anything I would call the “worst book of the month” but I did just finish one I really enjoyed.
I thought this was a wonderfully creepy ghost story and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Check out my review!
What were some of your best and worst this month?