Apr 30, 2010

Friday Finds #10

What great books did you hear about / discover this past week?
Share with us your Friday Finds!
 Book of Love by Abra Ebner
When seventeen-year-old Jane Taylor witnessed her father's death, something happened to her. Ever since, her thoughts have been consumed by death, going so far as to foresee the ever-changing deaths of those around her. Sixteen-year-old Emily Taylor resented her sister's closeness with their father, who died when she was six. With the strange ability to read minds, she drowns the voices out with drugs, sending Jane over the edge. When seventeen-year-old Wes Green was adopted, he moved in next door to Jane, finding in her a childhood friend turned high-school crush. All summer, the pain in his bones seemed unwarranted. He was done growing long ago. When senior year starts, however, the pain only gets worse. The foreseen changes are not expected, and far too animal for his taste. When Max Gordon found himself standing above the dying body of an innocent seven-year-old girl, he saw in her eyes something he hadn't seen in the century he'd spent roaming Earth. Her father was already dead, but there was hope to save her. Jane was her name, and already she was all he ever wanted. It was his job to bring her back, and it was his job to protect her - the biggest mistake of his life. When these four teens enter Glenwood High their senior year, no one but Max could understand the future ahead of them. Drawn together by blood and friendship, they each hide a dark secret that will soon bind them together. Max has to protect Jane, Jane wants to be normal, Wes wants Jane to love him, and Emily just wants the voices to stop... But their fate just wants them dead.
 Don't Kill the Messenger by Eileen Rendahl
Melina Markowitz is a Messenger, a go-between for paranormal forces and supernatural creatures. Problem is, when a girl's a go-between, it's hard not to get caught in the middle...
When ninjas steal an envelope from Melina, her search leads her to a Taoist temple in Old Sacramento, where the priests seem to practice Zen and the art of mayhem. Melina learns from the handsome ER doctor (and vampire) who gave her the envelope that it contained talismans created by the priests to control Chinese vampires, who are attacking gang members to spark a street war.
Although he may look more like a surfer than a cop, Ted Goodnight is dead serious about investigating the surge in gang violence. At every turn he runs into Melina, a very attractive-and very mysterious-young woman. Can Melina enlist his help to battle something he doesn't even believe in without blowing her cover?
Jennifer Scales and the Ancient Furnace  
by MaryJanice Davidson & Anthony Alongi

And you thought puberty sucked. Try morphing into a dragon.
I knew that at this age I'd be going through a lot of changes-but blue scales? Claws? A snout? Come on! This is ridiculous and just so unfair. And I can't believe my parents waited until the day I turned into a dragon to tell me that I am one-thanks to my dad's side of the family. Believe me, no amount of dieting can stop how big I grow when I turn dragon-and don't get me started on the tail.
This dragon thing is going to happen every crescent moon. Can I be any more of a freak? At least I have my grandfather to show me how to get by as a weredragon. It's not easy. And I can't even tell my best friends, because dragons have ancient enemies who want to destroy them. As if my parents, school and the soccer team weren't enough to deal with. Looks like it's up to me to protect the few fellow dragons that are still left or I won't see my next birthday. Forget about blowing out those candles. With this breath, I'll set the whole town on fire...
 The Royal Treatment by MaryJanice Davidson
In a world nearly identical to ours, the North won the Civil War, Ben Affleck is the sexiest man alive, Martha Stewart is a better pastry chef than insider trader, and Russia never sold Alaska to the US. Instead, Alaska is a rough, beautiful country ruled by a famously eccentric royal family, ostracized by the other royals, and urgently in need of a bride for the Crown Prince. In fact, ANYONE would do. But they have no idea what they're in for when they offer the job to a feisty commoner.. a girl who's going to need.. The Royal Treatment!
 Undead and Unwed by MaryJanice Davidson
Betsy Taylor is having a bad week.  First of all she is made redundant from her secretarial job, and then she is run over and killed in a car accident.  For most people this would at least be the end of the bad week but not for Betsey.  She rises from the dead as a vampire and despite several attempts to make herself dead again she just can’t stay dead.
To make matters worse her new vampire friends seem to think she is their prophesied vampire queen and they want her to help them destroy the mad vampire master Nostrodamus who currently controls all the vampires in the city.  Although Nostrodamus is unpleasant, insane and a cliché of every bad vampire movie Betsy has ever seen, she has other important things to do.  Like shopping for some new clothes as day wear is no longer appropriate attire for her.
On the plus side she has met the devastatingly attractive vampire Sinclair, possibly the most scrumptious man she has ever met dead or alive…
 Stoneheart by Charlie Fletcher
Deep in the City something had been woken, so old that people had been walking past it for centuries without giving it a second look!' When George breaks the dragon's head outside the Natural History Museum he awakes an ancient power. This prehistoric beast, sentry-still for centuries, hunts him down with a terrifying wrath. And this is just the beginning! The taints and spits -- statues with opposing natures -- are warring forces; wreaking deadly havoc on the city landscape. The World War One gunner offers protection of sorts; and the wisdom of the Sphinx is legendary. But George and his companion Edie are trapped in a world of danger. And worse -- they are quite alone. The rest of London is oblivious to their plight. This epic adventure exposes forces long-layered in the fabric of London. After entering its richly original and breathtaking world, the city streets and skyline will never again seem the same! 

The Crowfiled Curse by Pat Walsh
It's 1347 and fifteen-year-old Will, an orphan boy, lives at Crowfield Abbey. Sent into the forest to gather wood, he rescues instead, a creature from a trap - a hob, who shares with Will a terrible secret. Somewhere in the forest behind the abbey where he lives, is a grave. And buried deep in the snow is an angel. But how can an angel die? What has it to do with the monks of the Abbey? When two hooded strangers arrive at Crowfield asking questions about the angel's grave, Will is drawn into a world of dangerous Old Magic.

Grimpow: The Invisible Road by Rafael Ábalos
GRIMPOW HAD NO idea who the dead man was, but hidden in his leather bag was a treasure that would change his life forever. Ruby and
emerald encrusted daggers, silver coins, jewels, and a letter with a golden seal depicting a snake swallowing its own tail. And clutched in the man's firm grip - a stone. A stone that will shape Grimpow's destiny. For when he holds it, strange things begin to happen. Visions of places he's never been fill his mind and he's able to read the strange language in the letter, a message meant for someone else entirely.
So begins Grimpow's journey with the stone - a centuries-long journey that has driven sane men crazy, turned peaceful men violent, and made strong men powerless. No man has ever unlocked its secrets. But no boy has ever tried.
 Nightmare Academy by Dean Lorey
When Charlie Benjamin sleeps, monsters wake up.
It's hard to fit in when your nightmares open portals to the Netherworld, where horrible creatures live-like the class 3 Netherstalker that invaded a sleepover and tried to eat the other children. Luckily there's a place for Charlie-the Nightmare Academy. Built from wrecked ships set in the branches of the world's most incredible tree fort, the Academy trains people to use their unique gifts to fight the monsters that rush in when the lights go out. But Charlie is far more powerful than anyone ever imagined, and his entrance exam opens a portal straight to the heart of the Netherworld, where ultimate evil plots Earth's destruction. He'll need all his cleverness-and the help of his new friends-to save himself and his family and to put these bad boys to bed once and for all. The monsters under your bed are real!
But never fear-the Nightmare Academy will train Nethermancers and Banishers like you to destroy them! 
 I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak
Meet Ed Kennedy—underage cabdriver, pathetic cardplayer, and useless at romance. He lives in a shack with his coffee-addicted dog, the Doorman, and he's hopelessly in love with his best friend, Audrey. His life is one of peaceful routine and incompetence, until he inadvertently stops a bank robbery. That's when the first Ace arrives. That's when Ed becomes the messenger. . . .
Chosen to care, he makes his way through town helping and hurting (when necessary), until only one question remains: Who's behind Ed's mission?
 The Hound of Rowan by Henry H. Neff
MAX MCDANIELS LIVES a quiet life in the suburbs of Chicago, until the day he stumbles upon a mysterious Celtic tapestry. Many strange people are interested in Max and his tapestry. His discovery leads him to Rowan Academy, a secret school where great things await him.
But dark things are waiting, too. When Max learns that priceless artworks and gifted children are disappearing, he finds himself in the crossfire of an ancient struggle between good and evil. To survive, he'll have to rely on a network of agents and mystics, the genius of his roommate, and the frightening power awakening within him.

Once by Morris Gleitzman
Felix can't stop wondering what has happened to his parents. He's been living in an orphanage in the mountains for over three years now, and they still haven't come to get him. When men arrive one day and start burning the orphanage's books, Felix is upset and can't understand what is happening.
But this is Poland in 1942 and the men are Nazis, come to burn Jewish books. Fearing for his Jewish bookseller parents, Felix escapes and embarks on a dangerous mission across Nazi-occupied Poland, determined to warn his parents about what is going on.
 The Museum's Secret by Henry Chancellor
Welcome to the Scatterhorn Museum! But don't get too excited - it's a cold and dingy place, crammed full of tatty stuffed animals and junk. Nobody much wants to visit any more, and its days are surely numbered. But when Tom is sent to live here he soon finds there is more to this museum than meets the eye. The animals may be shabby and moth-eaten - but they possess an incredible secret. And when Tom discovers he can go right back to the time of their making, a hundred years earlier, he embarks on a journey full of unimaginable terrors...Join Tom in his breathtaking adventure in and out of time, from an Edwardian ice fair to the wastes of Mongolia, the jungles of India, and beyond...
 The Last Stormlord by Glenda Larke
Shale is the lowest of the low-an outcast from a poor village in the heart of the desert. In the desert water is life, and currency, and Shale has none. But he has a secret. It's the one thing that keeps him alive and may save all the cities of the Quartern in the days to come. If it doesn't get him killed first...
Terelle is a slave fleeing a life as a courtesan. She finds shelter in the home of an elderly painter but as she learns the strange and powerful secrets of his art she fears she may have traded a life of servitude for something far more perilous...
The Stormlord is dying in his tower and there is no one, by accident or design, to take his place. He brings the rain from the distant seas to his people. Without a Stormlord, the cities of the Quartern will wither and die.
Their civilization is at the brink of disaster. If Shale and Terelle can find a way to save themselves, they may just save them all. Water is life and the wells are running dry...
 Dark Time by Dakota Banks
Three hundred years ago, she sold her soul to a demon. Now she wants it back.
For centuries, the woman calling herself Maliha Crayne has lived a second life - as an assassin for the malevolent creature who owns her soul. A haunted killer with the blood of countless victims on her hands, she has finally discovered a way to nullify the demonic pact that chains her: If she saves a life for every one she has taken, she will be free.
But if she fails, her punishments will be unspeakable, unendurable . . . and neverending. 

The Didymus Contingency by Jeremy Robinson
If you could go back in time...and witness any event...where would you go? When Dr. Tom Greenbaum faces that question after successfully discovering the secret to time travel, he knows the time, place and event he will witness: the death and failed resurrection of Jesus Christ. Dr. David Goodman, Tom's colleague and closest friend follows Tom into the past, attempting to avert a time-space catastrophe, but forces beyond their control toss them into a dangerous end game where they are tempted by evil characters, betrayed by friends, pursued by an assassin from the future and haunted by a demon that cannot be killed.

The Cleaner by Brett Battles
Meet Jonathan Quinn: a freelance operative with a take-no-prisoners style and the heart of a loner. His job? Professional “cleaner.” Nothing too violent, just disposing of bodies, doing a little cleanup if necessary. But in Brett Battles's electrifying debut novel, Quinn's latest assignment will change everything, igniting a harrowing journey of violence, betrayal, and revenge.
The job seemed simple enough: investigating a suspicious case of arson. But when a dead body turns up where it doesn't belong - and Quinn's handlers at “the Office” turn strangely silent - he knows he's in over his head. With only a handful of clues, Quinn scrambles for cover, struggling to find out why someone wants him dead . . . and if it's linked to a larger attempt to wipe out the Office.
Quinn's only hope may be Orlando, a woman from his past who's reluctant to help but who may hold the key to solving the case. Suddenly the two are prying into old crimes, crisscrossing continents, struggling to stay alive long enough to unbury the truth. But as the hunt intensifies, Quinn is stunned by what he uncovers: a chilling secret . . . and a brilliantly orchestrated conspiracy - with an almost unimaginable goal.
 Library of the Dead by Glenn Cooper
A murderer is on the loose on the streets of New York City: nicknamed the Doomsday Killer, he's claimed six victims in just two weeks, and the city is terrified. Even worse, the police are mystified: the victims have nothing in common, defying all profiling, and all that connects them is that each received a sick postcard in the mail before they died - a postcard that announced their date of death. In desperation, the FBI assigns the case to maverick agent Will Piper, once the most accomplished serial killing expert in the bureau's history, now on a dissolute spiral to retirement.
Battling his own demons, Will is soon drawn back into a world he both loves and hates, determined to catch the killer whatever it takes. But his search takes him in a direction he could never have predicted, uncovering a shocking secret that has been closely guarded for centuries. A secret that once lay buried in an underground library beneath an 8th Century monastery, but which has now been unearthed - with deadly consequences. A select few defend the secret of the library with their lives - and as Will closes in on the truth, they are determined to stop him, at any cost ... 

Stealing Light by Gary Gibson
In the 25th century, only the Schindleria possess the secret of faster-than-light travel (FTL), thus exerting an economic stranglehold on all interstellar travel. For a century and a half, mankind has operated within their influence, till now there are at least a dozen human colony worlds scattered along Schindlerian trade routes.
Sonja Merrick, while serving as a military pilot, has witnessed atrocities for which this alien race is responsible. Now piloting a civilian cargo ship, she is currently ferrying an exploration team to a star system containing a derelict starship. From its wreckage, her passengers hope to salvage a functioning FTL drive of mysteriously non-Schindlerian origin. But the Schindleria are not yet ready to relinquish their monopoly of a technology they acquired through ancient genocide.
 The Poison Throne by Celine Kiernan
When young Wynter Moorehawke returns to court with her dying father, but she finds her old home shadowed with fear. The king has become a violent despot, terrorizing those he once loved. His son and heir Alberon has fled into exile and now there are whispers everywhere of rebellion. Meanwhile, Alberon's half-brother Razi has been elevated to his throne. He struggles to meet his King's demands while remaining loyal to his beloved brother and to his friend-Wynter.
Now, she must choose- her father or her dreams, her friend or her king, her duty... or her love.

Apr 28, 2010

"Waiting On" Wednesday #9: Shadow Bound by Erin Kellison

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Want to participate?
Go here!
My "can't-wait-to-read" choice is:

Shadow Bound
(Book 1 in the Shadow series)
Erin Kellison 

Publication Date:
June 29 


Some people will do anything to avoid it. Even trade their immortal souls for endless existence.


Secretly, inexorably, they are infiltrating our world, sucking the essence out of unsuspecting victims with their hideous parody of a kiss.


Adam Thorne founded the Institute to study and destroy his monster of a brother, but the key to its success is held in the pale, slender hand of a woman on the run. There is something hauntingly different about Talia O’Brien, her unknowing sensuality, her uncanny way of slipping into Shadow.


This is the place between life and what comes after - a dark forest of fantasy, filled with beauty, peril, mystery. And Talia is about to open the door.

Apr 21, 2010

"Waiting on" Wednesday #8: Perchance to Dream by Lisa Mantchev

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Want to participate?
Go here!
My "can't-wait-to-read" choice is:

Perchance to Dream
(Book 2 in the Theatre Illuminata series)
Lisa Mantchev

Publication Date:
May 25

The stuff that dreams are made on.

Act Two, Scene One

Growing up in the enchanted Thèâtre Illuminata, Beatrice Shakespeare Smith learned everything about every play ever written. She knew the players and their parts, but she didn't know that she, too, had magic. Now, she is the Mistress of Revels, the Teller of Tales. She is ready for the outside world.


And it is nothing like the one she has come to expect. Bertie can make things happen by writing them, but outside the protective walls of the Thèâtre, they don't go as planned. And her magic cannot help her make a decision between -

Nate: Her suave and swashbuckling pirate. Is now in mortal peril.

Ariel: A brooding, yet seductive, air spirit. Loves Bertie enough to die for her.

When Nate is kidnapped and taken prisoner by the Sea Witch, only Bertie can free him. She and her fairy sidekicks embark on a journey aboard the Thèâtre's locomotive caravan, using Bertie's word magic to guide them. Along the way, they collect a sneak-thief, who has in his possession something most valuable, and meet a bird that might be Bertie's father - and the maker of the magical Scrimshaw. Bertie's dreams are haunted by Nate, whose love for Bertie is keeping him alive, but in the daytime, it's Ariel who is tantalizingly close, and the one she is falling for. Who does Bertie love the most? And will her magic be powerful enough to save her once she enters the Sea Witch's lair?

WWW Wednesdays #9

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…
  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?
This weekly meme is being hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading!
What are you currently reading?

Playing with Fire 


Gena Showalter 


What did you recently finish reading?

Practice Makes Perfect


Julie James 

What do you think you’ll read next?

No idea, but I might read:



Aprilynne Pike

Apr 19, 2010

It's Monday! What are you reading? #15

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is being hosted by Sheila at One Persons Journey through a World of Books. This is a great weekly event where everyone can keep track of the books finished last week & the books planning to read this week! 

Last week I finished Stardust by Neil Gaiman (re-read) & I also read Eyes Like Stars by Lisa Mantchev, Real Women Don't Wear Size 2 by Kelley St. John & Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake by Sarah MacLean.

This week I'll finish The Perfect Wife by Victoria Alexander (re-read) & The Thirteen Problems by Agatha Christie. Also (depending on my mood) I'm planning to continue reading In the Woods by Tana French & The Death of Achilles by Boris Akunin & I'm hoping to re-read The Painted Man by Peter V. Brett & to read The Desert Spear by Peter V. Brett.

So, what are you reading this week?
Tell us now here!

Apr 16, 2010

Friday Finds #9

What great books did you hear about / discover this past week?

Share with us your Friday Finds!

Haven't done this meme for a month, so here are some of my finds for that period:

The Shifter by Janice Hardy

Nya is an orphan struggling for survival in a city crippled by war. She is also a Taker - with her touch, she can heal injuries, pulling pain from another person into her own body. But unlike her sister, Tali, and the other Takers who become Healers' League apprentices, Nya's skill is flawed: She can't push that pain into pynvium, the enchanted metal used to store it. All she can do is shift it into another person, a dangerous skill that she must keep hidden from forces occupying her city. If discovered, she'd be used as a human weapon against her own people.
Rumors of another war make Nya's life harder, forcing her to take desperate risks just to find work and food. She pushes her luck too far and exposes her secret to a pain merchant eager to use her shifting ability for his own sinister purposes. At first Nya refuses, but when Tali and other League Healers mysteriously disappear, she's faced with some difficult choices. As her father used to say, principles are a bargain at any price; but how many will Nya have to sell to get Tali back alive? 

The Owl Keeper by Christine Brodien-Jones

Maxwell Unger has always loved the night. He used to do brave things like go tramping through the forest with his gran after dark. He loved the stories she told him about the world before the Destruction - about nature, and books, and the silver owls. His favorite story, though, was about the Owl Keeper.
According to Max's gran, in times of darkness the Owl Keeper would appear to unite owls and sages against the powers of the dark. Gran is gone now, and so are her stories of how the world used to be. Max is no longer brave. The forest is dangerous, the books Gran had saved have been destroyed, and the silver owls are extinct. At least that's what the High Echelon says. But Max knows better.
Maxwell Unger has a secret. And when a mysterious girl comes to town, he might just have to start being brave again.
The time of the Owl Keeper, Gran would say, is coming soon.

Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow

Dru Anderson has what her grandmother called 'the touch.' (Comes in handy when you're traveling from town to town with your dad, hunting ghosts, suckers, wulfen, and the occasional zombie.)
Then her dad turns up dead - but still walking - and Dru knows she's next. Even worse, she's got two guys hungry for her affections, and they're not about to let the fiercely independent Dru go it alone. Will Dru discover just how special she really is before coming face-to-fang with whatever - or
whoever - is hunting her?

 The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

It is June 1950 and a sleepy English village is about to be awakened by the discovery of a dead body in Colonel de Luce's cucumber patch. The police are baffled, and when a dead snipe is deposited on the Colonel's doorstep with a rare stamp impaled on its beak, they are baffled even more. Only the Colonel's daughter, the precocious Flavia -when she's not plotting elaborate revenges against her nasty older sisters in her basement chemical laboratory, that is - has the ingenuity to follow the clues that reveal the victim's identity, and a conspiracy that reached back into the de Luce family's murky past. Flavia and her family are brilliant creations, a darkly playful and wonderfully atmospheric flavour to a plot of delightful ingenuity.

The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker
by Leanna Renee Hieber

What fortune awaited sweet, timid Percy Parker at Athens Academy? Hidden in the dark heart of Victorian London, the Romanesque school was dreadfully imposing, a veritable fortress, and little could Percy guess what lay inside. She had never met its powerful and mysterious Professor Alexi Rychman, knew nothing of the growing shadows, of the Ripper and other supernatural terrors against which his coterie stood guard. She saw simply that she was different, haunted, with her snow white hair, pearlescent skin and uncanny gift. This arched stone doorway was a portal to a new life, to an education far from what could be had at a convent-and it was an invitation to an intimate yet dangerous dance at the threshold of life and death... 

 A Darker Domain by Val McDermid

It seemed like an unsolvable mystery at the time: a wealthy heiress and son kidnapped in Fife, then a botched payoff, leaving her dead with no trace of the child. So when, over twenty-five years later, a possible clue is discovered by a journalist in Tuscany, cold case expert DI Karen Pirie doesn't hold much hope of unravelling the infamous enigma. She's already investigating a case from the same year. At the height of the miner's strike, Mick Prentice broke ranks to join 'scab' strike-breakers down south. But new evidence suggests Mick's disappearance may not be as straightforward as that - and Karen's investigations take her into a dark domain of secrets, betrayal and the ultimate violence! Past and present intertwine in a novel of taut psychological suspense that explores the intersection of desire and greed.

Living the Vida Lola by Misa Ramirez

Dolores "Lola" Cruz loves shoes, kung fu, and her job as an underling at Camacho and Associates, a private investigation firm in Sacramento. After a year and a half on the job, her sexy and mysterious boss, Manny Camacho, finally assigns Lola her first big case--a woman's disappearance.
If Lola gets it right, it could mean a big bump up the career ladder. But this is no grocery store stakeout. The woman turns up dead and the same thing could hapen to Lola if she doesn't watch her back. Complicating matters are the reappearance of Jack Callaghan, the gorgeous guy who first inspired Lola to surveil in high school, and her loving but meddling family that she still lives with. Can Lola solve the murder, reconnect with her long-time crush, and help her cousin's
quinceañera go off without a hitch?  

The Alexander Cipher by Will Adams

It's 318 BC in the deserts of Libya, and Alexander the Great is buried as only a God should be, placed in a golden Sarcophagus in a catacomb of chambers, each packed with diamonds, rubies and gold. This was how he should have remained, but time waits for no-one. 2007 and underwater archaeologist Daniel Knox has been on the trail of Alexander's Gold ever since he can remember. When a tomb is uncovered on the construction site of a new hotel he believes he has found a clue to what he has been working towards for years. But the discovery has alerted two of the most dangerous men in the world, and Daniel is now a marked man. 

 The Book of Air and Shadows by Michael Gruber

A distinguished Shakespearean scholar found tortured to death . . .
A lost manuscript and its secrets buried for centuries . . .
An encrypted map that leads to incalculable wealth . . . 

"Tap-tapping the keys and out come the words on this little screen, and who will read them I hardly know. I could be dead by the time anyone actually gets to read them, as dead as, say, Tolstoy. Or Shakespeare. Does it matter, when you read, if the person who wrote still lives?"
These are the words of Jake Mishkin, whose seemingly innocent job as an intellectual property lawyer has put him at the center of a deadly conspiracy and a chase to find a priceless treasure involving William Shakespeare. As he awaits a killer—or killers—unknown, Jake writes an account of the events that led to this deadly endgame, a frantic chase that began when a fire in an antiquarian bookstore revealed the hiding place of letters containing a shocking secret, concealed for four hundred years. In a frantic race from New York to England and Switzerland, Jake finds himself matching wits with a shadowy figure who seems to anticipate his every move. What at first seems like a thrilling puzzle waiting to be deciphered soon turns into a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse, where no one—not family, not friends, not lovers—is to be trusted.  

 Auralia's Colors by Jeffrey Overstreet

When thieves find an abandoned child lying in a monster's footprint, they have no idea that their wilderness discovery will change the course of history.
Cloaked in mystery, Auralia grows up among criminals outside the walls of House Abascar, where vicious beastmen lurk in shadow. There, she discovers an unsettling-and forbidden-talent for crafting colors that enchant all who behold them, including Abascar's hard-hearted king, an exiled wizard, and a prince who keeps dangerous secrets.
Auralia's gift opens doors from the palace to the dungeons, setting the stage for violent and miraculous change in the great houses of the Expanse.

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima

Times are hard in the mountain city of Fellsmarch. Reformed thief Han Alister will do almost anything to eke out a living for himself, his mother, and his sister Mari. Ironically, the only thing of value he has is something he can't sell. For as long as Han can remember, he's worn thick silver cuffs engraved with runes. They're clearly magicked-as he grows, they grow, and he's never been able to get them off.
While out hunting one day, Han and his Clan friend, Dancer catch three young wizards setting fire to the sacred mountain of Hanalea. After a confrontation, Han takes an amulet from Micah Bayar, son of the High Wizard, to ensure the boy won't use it against them. Han soon learns that the amulet has an evil history-it once belonged to the Demon King, the wizard who nearly destroyed the world a millennium ago. With a magical piece that powerful at stake, Han knows that the Bayars will stop at nothing to get it back.
Meanwhile, Raisa ana'Helena, Princess Heir of the Fells, has her own battles to fight. She's just returned to court after three years of relative freedom with her father's family at Demonai camp - riding, hunting, and working the famous Clan markets. Although Raisa will become eligible for marriage after her sixteenth name-day, she isn't looking forward to trading in her common sense and new skills for etiquette tutors and stuffy parties.
Raisa wants to be more than an ornament in a glittering cage. She aspires to be like Hanalea-the legendary warrior queen who killed the Demon King and saved the world. But it seems like her mother has other plans for her--plans that include a suitor who goes against everything the Queendom stands for. 

 Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay

It begins simply. Shen Tai, son of an illustrious general serving the Emperor of Kitai, has spent two years honoring the memory of his late father by burying the bones of the dead from both armies at the site of one of his father's last great battles. In recognition of his labors and his filial piety, an unlikely source has sent him a dangerous gift: 250 Sardian horses.
You give a man one of the famed Sardian horses to reward him greatly. You give him four or five to exalt him above his fellows, propel him towards rank, and earn him jealousy, possibly mortal jealousy. Two hundred and fifty is an unthinkable gift, a gift to overwhelm an emperor.
Wisely, the gift comes with the stipulation that Tai must claim the horses in person. Otherwise he would probably be dead already...

Napoleon's Pyramids by William Dietrich

What mystical secrets lie beneath the Great Pyramids? Traveling with Napoleon's ambitious expedition, American adventurer Ethan Gage solves a five-thousand-year-old riddle with the help of a mysterious medallion.
William Dietrich's books have been hailed for their vivid imagery, evocative atmospheres, impeccable historical accuracy, and ambitious plots. Now, in the breakout novel of his career, he delivers an enthralling story of intrigue, greed, and danger.
Ethan Gage, assistant to Ben Franklin and expatriate American in post-revolutionary France, wins an ancient—and possibly cursed—medallion in a card game one night. It turns out that the medallion, covered in seemingly indecipherable symbols, may be linked to a Masonic mystery. That same night, however, Ethan is framed for a prostitute's murder and barely escapes France with his life.
Faced with either prison or death, Gage is offered a third choice: to accompany the new emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte, as France sails to conquer Egypt—with Lord Nelson's fleet following close behind. Once Gage arrives, he encounters incredible surprises: one in the form of a beautiful Macedonian slave and another in the dawning knowledge that the medallion may solve one of the greatest riddles of history—who built the Great Pyramids, and why. What is revealed to Gage is more shocking than anyone could ever have imagined. 

Impulse by Ellen Hopkins

Three lives, three different paths to the same destination: Aspen Springs, a psychiatric hospital for those who have attempted the ultimate act -- suicide.
Vanessa is beautiful and smart, but her secrets keep her answering the call of the blade.
Tony, after suffering a painful childhood, can only find peace through pills.
And Conner, outwardly, has the perfect life. But dig a little deeper and find a boy who is in constant battle with his parents, his life, himself.
In one instant each of these young people decided enough was enough. They grabbed the blade, the bottle, the gun -- and tried to end it all. Now they have a second chance, and just maybe, with each other's help, they can find their way to a better life -- but only if they're strong and can fight the demons that brought them here in the first place.

Elfland by Freda Warrington

Led by Auberon Fox, a group of Aetherials - call them the Fair Folk, if you will - live among us, indistinguishable from humans. Every seven years, on the Night of the Summer Stars, Lawrence Wilder, the Gatekeeper, throws open all gates to the Other World. But this time, something has gone wrong. Wilder has sealed the gates, warning of a great danger lurking in the realm beyond them. The Aetherial community is outraged. What will become of them, deprived of the home realm from which their essential life force flows?
Rose Fox and Sam Wilder are drawn to the lands beyond the gates, even as their families feud over Lawrence's refusal to do his duty. Struggling with their own too-human urges, they discover hidden truths that draw them together in a forbidden alliance. Only by breaching the dreaded gates and daring the danger beyond can they confront that which they fear most - their otherness - and claim their birthright.

A Spy in the House by Y S Lee

This is a colourful, action-packed Victorian detective novel centred around the exploits of 'agent' Mary Quinn. At a young age, Mary is rescued from the gallows by a woman masquerading as a prison warden. She is taken to Miss Scrimshaw's Academy for Girls. The school, Mary learns, is a front for a private investigation agency and, at 17, she is taken on as an agent. In her new role she is catapulted into the family home of the Thorolds to investigate the shady business dealings of Mr Thorold.

Omnitopia Dawn by Diane Duane

In an increasingly wired and computer-friendly world, massive multiplayer online games have become the ultimate form of entertainment. And the most popular gaming universe of all is Omnitopia, created by genius programmer Dev Logan. For millions of people around the world, Omnitopia is an obsession, a passionate pastime, almost a way of life. But there's a secret to Omnitopia, one that Dev would give his life to protect-the game isn't just a program or a piece of code. It's become sentient-alive. And it's Dev's job to keep it that way...

The Lady in the Tower by Marie-Louise Jensen

Spring 1540 I am afraid. You are in grave danger. Mother, will you run away with me if I can free you? The servants call it the Lady Tower: the isolated part of the castle where Eleanor's mother is imprisoned after a terrible accusation. For four years Eleanor's only comfort has been their secret notes to one another. A chance discovery reveals a plot to murder her mother. Now Eleanor must free her before it is too late. But with danger and betrayal at every turn, she can trust no one. Especially not her father. Eleanor must use all her cunning to survive. For she soon realises that it is not just her mother she needs to save ...but also herself.
The Farfield Curse by Kaleb Nation

In a bustling metropolis where magic is outlawed, a six-year-old child is found inside a locked bank vault. A scrap of paper reveals his name: Bran Hambric. The child remembers nothing of his life before the vault. Only magic could have done this. But why would any mage risk breaking the law to place a child in a bank vault?
Eight years later the City of Dunce has forgotten about Bran. Even his foster parents don't seem to know he exists. But there are those who have been watching, biding their time, waiting to strike, people who know where Bran came from and why he was sent away. And they will do anything to get Bran back, dead or alive. 

Fallen Grace by Mary Hooper

Grace Parkes has just had to do a terrible thing. Having given birth to an illegitimate child, she has travelled to the famed Brookwood Cemetery to place her small infant's body in a rich lady's coffin. Following the advice of a kindly midwife, this is the only way that Grace can think of to give something at least to the little baby that died at birth, and to avoid the ignominy of a pauper's grave. Distraught and weeping, Grace meets two people at the cemetery: Mrs Unwin and James Solent. These two characters will have a profound affect upon Grace's life. But Grace doesn't know that yet. For now, she has to suppress her grief and get on with the business of living: scraping together enough pennies selling watercress for rent and food; looking after her older sister, who is incapable of caring for herself; thwarting the manipulative and conscience-free Unwin family who are as capable of running a lucrative funeral business as they are of defrauding a young woman of her fortune. This is a stunning evocation of life in Victorian London, with vivid and accurate depictions of the deprivation that the truly poor suffered, to the unthinking luxuries enjoyed by the rich, all bound up with a pacy and thrilling plot as Grace races to unravel the fraud that is about to be perpetrated against her and her sister.

Retribution Falls by Chris Wooding

Frey is the leader of a small and highly dysfunctional band of smugglers, occasional pirates and sometime fraudsters. An inveterate womaniser and rogue, he and his gang make a living on the wrong side of the law, existing on the fringes of the empire, avoiding the attention of the Union Navy. With two ragged fighter craft and a small cargo ship on the verge of falling apart, he and his gang run contraband, rob ships and generally make a nuisance of themselves. So a hot tip on a cargo barque loaded with valuables seems like a great prospect for an easy heist and a fast buck ...right up until, on their opening salvo, the whole thing explodes. Suddenly Frey isn't a nuisance anymore - he's public enemy number 1 with the Union on his tail and contractors hired to take him down. Including his oldest and dealiest rival, Frey's ex-wife. But something about the explosion doesn't make sense. The barque must have been rigged to blow, and Frey's been framed to take the fall.But if he wants to prove it, he's going to have to catch the real culprit - and that means heading into the heart of the Union, and following a trail through the criminal underworld that could ultimately lead to the very top.
It's going to take all his criminal talents to prove he's not a criminal ...