Archive for best fantasy books
Poor Sookie! The gal just can’t seem to make the right decision when it comes to a lover no matter what she chooses. In this the eleventh book in the Southern Vampire series, she goes through threats to her life (again), Erik revealing a secret deal that will change their relationship and Bill revealing more than Sookie really wants to know about his life before he returned to Bon Temps.
And that doesn’t count in the attack at Merlotte’s and the problem’s revealed by a gift her grandmother has left her. Still, Sookie never stops being lost in wonder at the amazing complexity of the world and her place in it. Even while adding to her tan and making sure her clothes are washed. It is all part of the Sookie Stackhouse world.
The Paranormal Romances of Sookie Stackhouse
I have always had a soft spot for the long cold Viking, but this time around I began to question my ability to cheer for Team Erik any longer. I felt that his complete disregard for how Sookie might feel about the decisions he is making went beyond callous. True, I guess if you are a thousand years old your perspective on things might be a bit different from an ordinary human perspective.
We all know that Erik loves to have a bit of power to wield. Making choices that will give him that power, even at Sookie’s expense, come with the Erik territory. That doesn’t mean I have to like it. How Sookie will choose to deal with it, and him, is the true question here. Even in a top paranormal romance story like this one there are some sacrifices I question making on the altar of love.
The Faery Question
Luckily, there is plenty going on to distract Sookie from her heart-ache, even if her paranormal romance woes seem to multiply with time. I am quite enamored of the whole faery clan and the question of why the two “uncles” continue to hang around Sookie. We begin to discover there is more here than just missing other faeries, as the mysterious Mr. Cataliades reveals his secrets to Sookie.
It seems that Claude, as usual, has far more up his sleeve then he lets on. But does he mean Sookie real harm, or does he even care if getting what he came for might hurt his “cousin”. Somehow, I doubt that sort of thing even occurs to someone like Claude. That is Sookie’s danger.
Danger All Around
In the end, a plot is soon made to kill Erik’s master. The plan that begins to form will take everyone’s skill to pull off. Of course, it soon becomes obvious that Sookie is just another pawn in Erik’s game to regain power.
I do like, though, that Pam gets some nice moments in this book. I am beginning to really warm up to her more, even if she is one of the cold ones. Still, she is Erik’s child and in the end will have her loyalties to him. But those loyalties get tried mightily in this one, as do Sookie’s loyalties to any vampire in the end.
But best of all, we get to visit with Bubba again and truly enjoy him. This is one light touch in the book I have been enjoying and was pleased to see him do his little cameo piece in Dead Reckoning. So lots happening, some loose ends tied up and new ones introduced, and some big questions finely brought to the forefront. Sookie will really have to decide just how much she is willing to put up with from Erik, and even from Bill. As she puts it, when Bill tells her he loves her:
“That’s what you all keep saying,” I answered. But it doesn’t seem to get me any happier.”
Yup- that is exactly the problem Sookie. Loving these vampires just hasn’t really worked out for you. But there is a reason this series is one of the top paranormal romance series around, the choices a certain barmaid has to make.
So- is Alcide looking any better? How about Sam? Maybe a shifter would be a better option. I kinda get the feeling an ordinary human guy wouldn’t stand a chance with her. Then again, it wouldn’t be a paranormal romance if he was an ordinary guy, would it?
So who do you think Sookie should be hooking up with? Do you think either Bill or Erik is worth the pain of living with their immortality? Is a shifter like Sam, that Sookie has known so long, a better choice? We know that in the end she has to choose, but who?
Looking to catch up on your favorite southern barmaid’s adventures? You can grab your own copy of Dead Reckoning in either Kindle, paperback or hardcover editions or even catch up on your favorite MP3 player with the audio version. Then come on back and tell us where you think this tale is going.
Are you on Team Erik, Team Bill or maybe even Team Sam?
Title: Blood Rock
Author: Anthony Francis
Release: July 2011
Genre: Urban Vampire
Dakota Frost is a skindancer- meaning she is someone who can make her magical tattoos dance out of her body to act and protect her. It is a handy ability to have in the Atlanta that she inhabits, filled with vampires, werekin of all kinds and so much more. She needs it sometimes just to stay alive and in this second installment in the series we find she has to get pretty creative with those magical tattoos. I jumped into this book without reading the first in the series and had no trouble but I have to admit that now I want to go back and read the first one. His world is just that good.
Dakota is one tough cookie, she can do all kinds of martial arts and kills when she has to without much regret. But I love the fact that we also see the soft side to her when she decides to adopt a little weretiger that is a foundling. The love between the two is obvious and Anthony Francis handles this part of the story with such grace that it makes the character all the more fascinating. When you add in that Atlanta seems to be having problems with magical graffiti that is killing vampires, that Dakota’s relationship with the law in the form of the local police seems to be getting rocky despite her family history of both a Dad and Uncle on the force and she is finding herself dating a vampire – well life is complicated for this gal.
The scenes of her and vampire Calaphase on a date are like nothing I have ever read. Her protective instincts when little Cinnamon is threatened are amazing. But the best scenes by far are when she needs to pull out those tattoos to protect either herself or someone else. Anthony Frances is careful to make his explanations seem within the realm of possibility without going into so much detail we lose the thread of the story. It is just plain intelligent writing of a carefully thought-out world with a dynamic and intelligent woman at the center it.
How she manages to find out who and what exactly is creating these deadly living pieces of graffiti – so like her own tattoos and yet so much more deadly – and why they are killing the vampires of Atlanta is just one part of a great story that will have you sitting up late at night to just read a little further. I know that is what I did, and couldn’t stop reading even if it was 3AM. The story telling in Blood Rock is addictive and the characters are all fascinating.
Title: The Vampire King
Author: Heather Killough-Walden
Release: February 5, 2012
Genre: Urban Vampire
It begins in pain. Pain and horror. Evie has never known such pain before, but she knows she will endure it. Soon, soon he will find her and this will end. That she must believe. For her delivery from this pain will be either when he finds her, the Vampire King, or when she dies. But the story doesn’t end there, it is only the beginning, for we soon find ourselves going back three weeks, to a tale of magic and power, of struggles for the right to rule and of the dark side of a world that coexists with our human one.
Evie is a writer, she writes vampire novels and she loves what she does. So it is surprising that one day a man walks into a coffee shop, and her life, that is a walking breathing version of the vampires she portrays in her novels. The difference is, he really is a vampire. Roman isn’t just any vampire, he is the Vampire King and every inch of him proclaims it. And he is destined to find her and claim her for his own.
There is just one thing that stand in their way, a warlock that vows to do whatever he can to prevent Roman from coming to his full power and glory. This is one warlock that will stop at nothing, not even Evie’s death, to prevent Roman from uniting with the one woman he is meant to find. Roman may be ruthless at times, but he will not risk Evie’s death at the evil ones hands. And that is precisely what he is gambling on.
With nothing less than a god that is a King of gods and a witch that has outlived most others to partake in the battle, we soon know that Evie is more than the simple human we and she thinks herself to be. Where this will lead and how it will be resolved is a tale that twists and turns with a cast of fantastic characters, rich landscapes and more mystery than anyone could ever hope to unravel with ease. The beginning of a rich new series, The Vampire King will entice you into a world of magic and mystery, with plenty of room for lust, love and romance as well.