Tag Archive | Kyle Robert Shultz

In Bookish News! (November 2018)

Hey, dear pagelings!

If I vanished from the face of the earth (or at least from my blogs. *cough*) for the last couple of weeks, it’s because NaNoWriMo has been eating my already extremely busy life. Seriously, I’ve been running non-stop all month. XD

But it’s been good too! (Like, I’m-ahead-on-my-wordcount-AND-FINISHED-WRITING-MY-steampunk-fantasy-NOVEL-THE-SIREN-AND-THE-SKYSHIP-AAAAHH!!! type of good.)

Anyway, today I’m popping in real quick to share the bookish news going on this November — or at least the bookish news I remembered/kept track of. A lot of things are falling through the cracks for me right now so bear with me. *nervous laughter*

NEW RELEASES

(All titles link to Goodreads.)

Here are a few I missed in last month’s post from October:

  • The Enchanted Sonata – Heather Dixon Wallwork — Thanks to reader Mikayla for telling me about this one! AAHH how did I miss it?? :O THE Heather Dixon (now writing under her married name and self-publishing this one!), who wrote Entwined and Illusionarium (both of which I absolutely ADORED), has a new book out! It’s a Nutcracker retelling and looks super cute and I want it. XD
  • Flourish (Green Princess #3) – H.L. Burke — The Green Princess Trilogy is now all released and I still haven’t read the first one! Heidi writes way too fast and we love her for it. Anyway, this one looks awesome and I must read the whole series now. Because two smol floofs fall in luuuurve and I hear there’s plant magic and also lots of feels.
  • The Rose and the Briar – J.M. Stengl — I haven’t read any of the Faraway Castle books yet but they look neat and this Sleeping Beauty retelling just came out. πŸ™‚

NOVEMBER RELEASES

  • Mark of the Raven – Morgan L. Busse — This one came out last week and it’s so shiny and I’m currently reading it and very intrigued! Coincidentally, there’s a shiny readalong with prompts and stuff over on Instagram @fantasyreadalong. (They also just reposted one of my pics for their Ravens prompt and excuse me while I die happy. ❀ )
  • Void Born – RJ Metcalf — I haven’t read the first one yet (Renegade Skyfarer) but I’m DYING TO because steampunnnnk. (I’m in a very steamunky mood because that’s the genre of the novel I just finished writing!) But this sequel just released and it looks awesome! There’s a Facebook party for this one this week on November 16! (Also, RJ is THE NICEST OF HUMANS because she sent me a surprise care package with tea and cough drops and stuff for my cold because I was sick before NaNo. She is the nicest. Thanks, RJ! ❀ )

  • A Royal Masquerade – Allison Tebo — I read this one and it was SO MUCH FUN. It’s a Goose Girl retelling featuring everyone’s favorite Fairy Godfather, Burndee, and antics he and Prince Colin get up to. It’s a riot and I’m reviewing it this week as part of the blog tour so stay tuned!
  • The Mortal Word (Invisible Library) — I’ve only read the first Invisible Library book but obviously need to catch up. But hey, there’s another one releasing — yayy. πŸ˜€
  • Rothana – Sarah Delena White — This is the sequel to Halayda which I squealed about muchly and was one of my top 15 reads of last year. AND AAAHH I’M SO NOT EMOTIONALLY PREPARED FOR THIS ONE. Half of me wants to not even read it because I’m SO SCARED FOR MY PRECIOUS CHARACTERS. But half of me also really really needs it, because Taylan and Zad and co. We’ll see. I might get myself a shiny Rothana for Christmas or something. *shifty eyes* ANYWAY it’s coming out in a couple of weeks and there’s a preorder sale and stuffs.
  • Antiheroes – Phoenix Fiction Writers — This is a cool ebook anthology releasing from the Phoenix Fiction authors. I haven’t read all of the stories in it, but I did read the one by Kyle Robert Shultz (called The Wolf at the Door) and it was sooo spooky but also brilliant and involved Little Red Riding Hood. The rest sound cool and I kind of need Nate Philbrick’s at least. >.> (Also, totally subscribe to their newsletter because it’s always funny and so it’s one of those newsletters I always read. XD)

There are probably others but I haven’t been keeping as good track as I should because I’ve been so busy with NaNo and life! But there are quite a few, anyway. πŸ˜›

OTHER NOVEMBER NEWS

There’s a big Black Friday sale some authors (Perry Kirkpatrick, Kate Willis, and Victoria Lynn) are putting together — so if you’re a blogger who wants to share the news or an author who wants to get in on it, you can check it out here! (I think signups end tomorrow, November 14?)

And it’s not quiiite November news, but Five Poisoned Apples is releasing on December 1st! :O

MY READING NEWS

Between a roadtrip in October and NaNoWriMo this month, I haven’t had a lot of time for reading . . . Here are the books I read last month, though. (You can always stalk, erm follow my reading progress on Goodreads here.)

  • Read my review for Armor of Aletheia and Blood in the Snow (AAHH MY FAVE!) if you missed them.
  • King’s Warrior and Arbrook Huxley and the Starcrossed Lovers were both re-reads aloud. SO FUN. ❀
  • The False Prince was my roadtrip read and it was SO MUCH FUN. I’m reading the second book now. πŸ™‚
  • A Royal Masquerade review coming in a couple of days but basically READ IT! ❀ (Because Burndee.)
  • And the Kyle Robert Shultz short stories were LOADS of fun and are currently available free on his website here!

We’ll see if I make some time for reading in the next couple of weeks! *fingers crossed*

I also mayyy have gone to a huge sale at a Half Price Books in October, and a library sale in November, so I kind of ran out of bookshelf space and it’s a problem. BUT BOOKS. (I’d share pics but I kind of already ferreted them away on my bookshelves/dresser here, there, and everywhere and would have to go on a scavenger hunt to find all the right ones again and then possibly sell my soul in order to fit them back where they were SO YEAH. *cough*)

And I’ve been having loads of fun posting bookish pics over on my Instagram, so if you’re on there and don’t follow me yet, I do stuff over there even when I don’t find time to blog, so. πŸ˜‰

That’s what I have for you guys today! Anything you’re excited about? Thanks for reading! πŸ™‚

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October Bookish News & Afterverse Relaunch!

Greetings, fellow page dreamers!

I’ve gone kind of radio silent because I was on vacation… but it’s time for another edition of what’s up In Bookish News, in October this time.

This month we’ve got the relaunch of the Afterverse, the release of SEVEN Snow White novellas, a batch of other new book releases, some hashtag and bookclub fun, and a giveaway, so there’s lots to cover!

Afterverse Relaunch!

Firstly, Kyle Robert Shultz is doing a Soft Relaunch on October 31 of his Afterverse series!

Essentially, this means that they’re coming to Kindle Unlimited, that there will be new short stories for his newsletter subscribers (go sign up on the side of his blog!), and that there has been some cover-tweaking and some story polishing.

Now, before you freak out, don’t worry — the changes are minor. The covers are just shined up a little, and the first three books (The Beast of Talesend, The Tomb of the Sea Witch, and The Stroke of Eleven) have undergone an extra round of edits to comb out typos and inconsistencies, and to clarify a few things, so there may be a few additional details.

But the stories as you know and love them (if you’ve read them already) are still essentially the same, so you don’t need to read the new versions! (Unless you want to.) And this is just a chance for you to celebrate the awesomeness that is Beaumont and Beasley, and new free short stories, yay!

And if you haven’t read the books yet, now is the absolute perfect time to jump on the Afterverse reading bandwagon with these shiny new editions!

(Small disclaimer: I’m Kyle’s editor. So I… er… may have been the editor involved with polishing the new editions. It was an absolute delight to shine up these hilarious and brilliant stories. ❀ I should put it on my invisible Badge of Credentials: Editor of the Afterverse.)

You can read all the details on Kyle’s site! Or, specifically, in two posts so far, HERE and HERE. And all of these updates should go into effect October 31st. πŸ™‚

If you’re a little confused about the order of the books… here, allow me to make you a list. (And yes, this may be an excuse to throw around the shiny covers for a whole bunch of stories I love. I have no regrets.)

Beaumont and Beasley Books

  1. The Beast of Talesend
  2. The Tomb of the Sea Witch
  3. The Stroke of Eleven
  4. The Return of Beaumont and Beasley (containing novellas The Janus Elixir [about Malcolm Blackfire!] and The Hound of Duville [about Nick and Crispin] which were previously published separately)

Beaumont and Beasley Short Stories

  1. The Last Days of Lady Cordelia (deals with some events from Book 1, The Beast of Talesend) — Amazon
  2. Christmas in Talesend (takes place after Book 3, The Stroke of Eleven) — Amazon
  3. A Spoonful of Aether (Beaumont and Beasley) — Newsletter freebie

Blackfire

Blackfire hasn’t officially launched with a novel yet. This is a Regency Fantasy setting of the Afterverse, featuring dragon/archaeologist Malcolm Blackfire and reformed jewel-thief Melody Nightingale. There aren’t any full-length books out about them yet. (Malcolm appears in many of the Beaumont and Beasley tales, and he and Melody feature together in The Stroke of Eleven.)

The tales that are exclusively about Malcolm and Melody so far are:

  1. The Haunted Hoard (short story) — Newsletter freebie
  2. The Janus Elixir (novella) — One of the two novellas collected in The Return of Beaumont and Beasley (Book 4), on Amazon

Crockett and Crane

Spinoff in magical wild west. Can stand alone. (Book 2 was released on Wattpad originally but will be published sometime on Amazon.)

Novels

  1. Horseman

Crockett and Crane Short Stories

  1. The Centaur Express (Crockett and Crane) — Newsletter freebie
  2. Ravenous (Crockett and Crane) — a free short story as an intro to Kyle’s Patreon page

OKAY. Moving on from the Afterverse, to . . . Snow White!

Seven Magic Mirrors

The Seven Magic Mirrors co-release is happening THIS WEEK and next! Seven Snow White retellings by six different authors are publishing the last several days of the month, run by Kendra E. Ardnek. I’ll be reviewing one by our very own Sarah Pennington — I’m SO excited! *flails around* Anyway, they’re all gorgeous and sound AMAZING so check them out!

Other Book Releases

(The first couple were actually the end of September, but who’s counting. :P)

  • Punctuation 101 – Jill Williamson — This is SUCH a handy, adorable little book for writers! I highly recommend it! I had the chance to volunteer as a proofreader for it and I love it so much. (Why yes, I am the kind of person who proofreads punctuation books for fun… *cough* This is probably why I’m an editor.)
  • Fallow (Green Princess, #2) – H.L. Burke — Look who’s doing it again — releasing books way too fast! XD I’m so excited to read the FIRST book so I can get to this one someday… πŸ˜€
  • Paws, Claws, and Magic Tales – Fellowship of Fantasy authors — Eep, another FoF anthology! It’s FREE so you should definitely pick up a copy of these magical cat tales. I can’t wait to read it. ^_^
  • Ogre Enchanted – Gail Carson Levine — It’s a prequel to Ella Enchanted! :O Excited for this one!
  • The Profile Match – Jill Williamson — The final Spencer (Mission League) book is out and I’m so excited for Jill finishing this six-book series! πŸ˜€ I’m kinda behind on it but am looking forward to catching up. ^_^
  • Mardan’s Heir – Kathrese McKee — This is the sequel to Mardan’s Heir, and they’re both on my TBR. It looks so cool!
  • A Wind from the Wilderness – Suzannah Rowntree (Oct 29) — This prolific author is always coming out with new tales and this one looks gorgeous!
  • Ewan Pendle and the Castle of Nightmares – Shaun Hume (Oct 31) — Some may remember my review of the first book, a charming British fantasy adventure with fantastical creatures. I’m really excited for this one! πŸ™‚

Other Events

A little late in the month for some of these, but there’s always time to jump on board!

Drachtober / Spooky Story Challenge

Jenelle Schmidt is running #Drachtober and the Spooky Story Challenge again (I posted one of my own!), so drop by and check those out!

Bookclub News

The Fellowship of Fantasy bookclub is reading Masque, a funny Beauty and the Beast story I ADORED — and we’re meeting the author, W. R. Gingell, at the bookclub’s Facebook party this week on Oct 26!

Also, speaking of bookclubs, Jill Williamson and Gillian Bronte Adams have started an awesome new bookclub called @fantasyreadalong on Instagram (and elsewhere? I think they said it moves around) and the first readalong will be in NOVEMBER, for Mark of the Raven by Morgan Busse — I’m so excited!

Giveaway

You can also drop by my other blog to enter a giveaway for No Plot, No Problem by Chris Baty, running through October 28! πŸ˜‰


I think that’s all I have for you. I do have some books I should review soonish, and we’re coming up on NaNoWriMo so I’ll probably have a mix of posts and too-busy-writing-to-blog, so we’ll see!

Whew! So much happening this month! What book(s) are you most excited about? Thanks for reading! πŸ™‚

In Bookish News: July 2018

Hi everyone!

Just popping in for a quick post about the book releases and other awesomely bookish things going on this month. πŸ™‚

JULY RELEASES

Here are some books which look like they’ll be awesome. πŸ˜€ (And I can’t get over how pretty the covers are together. AWK. So much shiny!)

Screenshot from Goodreads. If you’d like to check any of these books out on there, you can find ’em here at the moment.

(Titles link to places you can acquire the books or read more about them!)

  • The Green Princess series, book 1: Flower – H. L. Burke — (Okay, this was actually June 30th, but close enough, and I didn’t have it in last month’s post.) Because an adorable YA fantasy romance with a heroine who has plant powers sounds super fun. I’m curious to try this one!
  • Healers and Warriors – Daley Downing — (Similar story; just came out! EEE!) I enjoyed the first two books immensely, so I’m excited to try the third book in this series involving modern times and fae and cats and all that fun stuff. πŸ˜‰
  • The Janus Elixir – Kyle Robert Shultz (July 1) — I actually read this already (as an editor) and it’s so good! I’m not even biased, I promise. I’m just excited to have a whole novella told by Malcolm Blackfire, dragon and archaeologist. πŸ˜€ It’s super funny, features Malcolm and his… er… assistant Melody Nightingale, and is set in an alternate 1816 London, with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, some characters from mythology, and some other familiar names… You’ll just have to check it out, because it’s a blast. XD And it’s free if you sign up for the author’s newsletter. πŸ˜‰
  • Renegade Skyfarer – R. J. Metcalf (July 1) — I haven’t read this but I have it on good authority that it’s amazing, and it certainly SOUNDS like it is, because steampunkery and awesomeness. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy!
  • Launch – Jason C. Joyner (July 3) — I don’t know a lot about this one but it’s a superhero story I’ve seen some friends sharing and I think it’s a YA Christian fantasy superhero book, which sounds intriguing!
  • Fawkes – Nadine Brandes (July 10) — Alternate historical fantasy version of the Fifth of November Guy Fawkes incident? I’m sold!
  • Escape and Endurance – Sarah Holman (July 15) — Another addition to the delightful Kingdom Adventure series, Tales of Taelis! These books make my heart happy and I can’t wait to read this one. ^_^ Also THAT COVER. ❀ It’s up for pre-order. (It’s book 5 in the series, but they always stand alone!)
  • The Hound of Duville – Kyle Robert Shultz — (Not pictured because it’s not on Goodreads yet and I’m lazy.) The Brothers Beasley (Nick and Crispin) are back (I MISSED THEMMM) and hilarious as ever, in an alternate 1920s London with some magical mishaps as they solve a case involving… well… you’ll just have to read it. But there’s lots of dogs. And hilarity! XD And FEELS. O_O And it’s so good! πŸ˜€ (I may have edited this one too. *cough*)

RECENT COVER REVEALS

Take a look at these snazzy new covers! πŸ˜€

Book 1 of H. L. Burke’s Spellsmith and Carver series, Magicians’ Rivalry, which I reviewed, has a new cover!

Melanie Dickerson’s upcoming Mulan retelling has a neat cover too…

There’s a new Kate’s Case Files book from Sarah Holman, coming this September, and I’m really excited! Look at that adorable cover. πŸ˜€ It’s up for pre-order if you like Christian FBI mysteries! ^_^

And, of course, I revealed the cover of Sarah Addison-Fox’s upcoming fourth novel, Discerned, on my blog last week, but I have to share it here again because it’s so pretty. πŸ˜‰

OTHER BOOKISH HAPPENINGS

The Realm Makers writer conference is happening, so I might be less bloggy than usual, getting ready for and then attending that. I’m really excited! (And if you’re going, give me a shout so we can meet! :D)

I know this is very localized, so I apologize if it doesn’t apply to you, but thought I’d share anyway. If you are, or know anybody, in the St. Louis, MO area, there’s going to be a Book Festival as part of the Realm Makers conference, and on Saturday, July 21, the book festival part is open to the public! So you can check that out here. πŸ™‚

The Fellowship of Fantasy’s neat Summer Reading Quest is still going, and it’s not too late to join! Readers of all ages can join in and read books and earn rewards and it’s basically awesome. ^_^ (Not that I’ve been keeping up with it because so much busy right now. *cough*) (And, yes, here’s the link for older readers. ;))

EDITED TO ADD: The Electrical Menagerie, which I loved, is the book of the month for the Fellowship of Fantasy bookclub, so there’s no better time to join in on this fun group, if you do the Facebook thing, than now! πŸ˜€ Because you need Carthage and Huxley in your life. You just do.


Okay, that’s all I have for you guys today!

What books or bookish happenings are you excited about? What’s on your Summer Reading list? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading! πŸ™‚

In Bookish News: June 2018

Hey! I’m back! ^_^

It’s time for a roundup of some bookish news and fun stuff for this month. πŸ™‚

JUNE BOOK RELEASES

Like I did last month, I thought I’d share a list of books releasing this month, because ALL THE BOOKS are coming out right now! (Like… literally all of them. O_O)

  • Kate’s Dilemma – Sarah Holman(June 1) I love the Kate’s Case Files series, so I was excited for this third book! πŸ™‚ I loved it. ^_^ (Read my review.)
  • The Stealthmaster’s Shadow – Hope Ann(June 1) An epic, snarky hero, and a Twelve Dancing Princesses retelling… πŸ˜€ Also loved! (Read my review.)
  • Song of Leira – Gillian Bronte Adams(June 5) It’s the final book in the trilogy and I’m. so. excited. O_O I’ll be sharing more about it on Tuesday, and you can watch for my review coming soon! ^_^
  • A Thousand Perfect Notes – C. G. Drews(June 7) The book itself doesn’t sound like it’s quiiite my cup of tea, but I’m excited for Cait who’s getting published! πŸ™‚
  • The Electrical Menagerie – Mollie E. Reeder(June 9) AAHH. I just read this one and it was SO good. *collapses* Steampunk and a buddy story and just… it was AMAZING and so much fun! I recommend it highly and hopefully will share a review soonish. BUT JUST READ IT ALREADY. (Or… y’know… when it comes out, since I read an advance reader copy I won. *cough*)
  • Lightporter – C. B. Cook(June 16) Gaah, I’ve been excited for this since Twinepathy! Superheroes and awesomeness. And it’s almost here!
  • King’s War – Jill Williamson(June 19) The final Kinsman Chronicles book and I’M NOT READY — aaahh! It’s so thick and gorgeous though and I’m looking forward to reading it!
  • The Orphan’s Wish – Melanie Dickerson(June 26) I’m curious what an Aladdin story in the continuing Hagenheim series is going to be like! πŸ™‚

OTHER BOOKWYRMERY

Here, have a smattering of other bookish news!

If you’re artistically inclined, the annual Ilyon Chronicles fan-art contest just opened…

I’ll be part of the blog tours for Song of Leira and Lightporter, so watch for those. I can’t wait!

And hopefully I’ll have a few other reviews to share, as well.

Another book that came out recently (but which wasn’t listed in the May Bookish News post, so I’m posting it here so it doesn’t slip through the cracks) is Horseman by Kyle Robert Shultz! You can read my review of sorts here, but basically it’s a hilarious wild-west magical kind of adventure and is so much fun. I also may have been an editor for it, so… you know. There’s that. πŸ˜‰

The third book in the series that began with Masters and Beginners has a cover! I love it and I’m excited. πŸ˜€

Hannah Williams just revealed her debut novella releasing in August and I’M SO EXCITED AAH.

June 22: Jill Williamson and Gillian Bronte Adams are having a joint FB party to celebrate the release of Song of Leira and King’s War. I’m so excited!

June 15: Speaking of parties on Facebook, if you’re into those, here’s another one. (Because H. L. Burke and Janeen Ippolito are fun.)

And another VERY awesome thing is the Summer Reading Quest put on by the Fellowship of Fantasy! If you know (or are…) a kid who loves reading fantasy, there’s an epic summer reading challenge with prizes and stuff, for readers under 18 I think. Spread the word! I know I’d have LOVED doing something like this a few years ago. ^_^

Oh, and there’s a less-in-depth, but-still-awesome, side version of that for those of us who are technically “adults” even if we’re young at heart! πŸ˜‰ So check that out.

The Summer Reading Quest started just a couple of days ago at the start of June, and it’s going to run through August, so there’s time to get involved and read all kinds of wonderful fantasy.


Aaand that’s all I have for you today.

I hope you found this helpful or at least vaguely intriguing! Let me know some bookish things YOU’RE excited about, in the comments!

I hope you have an amazing summer, filled with lots of books! πŸ˜‰

Thanks for reading! πŸ™‚

The 15 Most Glorious Book Gems I Read In 2017

Guys, it’s 2018!

WHAT EVEN.

I have no idea how this happened, but it has.

This gives me license to share with you THE MOST GLORIOUS BOOK GEMS I READ IN 2017. And also mention some of my book-reading stats of the year because obviously I need to squeal about even MORE books. It’s who I am. πŸ˜‰

(Most of the books I read last year which I have physical copies of around.)

STATS

SOME STATS

According to my Goodreads Reading Challenge, in 2017, I read:

88 books

20,368 pages

(I find it perfect/hilarious that my shortest and longest reads both had sea covers. XD)

Here are some stats I put together from a spreadsheet. (And if you include some short stories and picture books, etc., which I didn’t include on my challenge, then I read 125 books this year. ;))

  • New Books (i.e. novels & novellas) I Read: 62
  • New Anthologies: 7
  • Short Stories (Singles): 17
  • Non-Fiction: 5
  • Re-Reads: 17
  • Picture Books: 18

SOURCE/ETC

  • Won: 6
  • Library: 14 (most of these were picture books. XD)
  • Audiobooks: 1
  • For Review (more or less): 37
  • Books in Readalongs/Bookclubs: 13
  • Beta-read: 5-ish

OTHER STATS

  • Diana Wynne Jones: 11
  • Jane Austen related: 7
  • Words of Reviews Written (according to Scrivener where I kept my reviews for this year): approximately 50,000. XD

BLOGOVERSARY

Also, last week, on January 1st, it was my blogoversary! :O

I’ve now been blogging here on the Page Dreamer for two entire years and I’m gobsmacked at this information.

Thanks for coming along with me all this way! ❀ And if you’re newer — welcome! I hope you’ll have as much fun here as I’ve been having! ^_^

TOP 15 READS OF 2017

Anyway! Without further ado, in no particular order (I mean, slightly more favorites are nearer the top, but it’s not 100%…) here are the top 15 (ish) books I read in 2018!

(Click the titles for my reviews! And the author names for website links.)

1. Hexwood (by Diana Wynne Jones)

This one still wins for most mind-boggling and… well… everything. I mean, there had to be a DWJ book at the top, of course, and this was the best one by her I read all year. So, naturally. And then there’s fantasy/sci-fi/King Arthur/timey-wimey/PLOT TWISTS. Plus Mordion. IT WAS SO GOOD. I need to read it again. (See review linked from title above for disclaimers. XD) (ButMordionThough.)

2. The Beast of Talesend / The Tomb of the Sea Witch / The Stroke of Eleven (by Kyle Robert Shultz)

(So, I can’t quite decide which of these is the best, hence I’m tossing them all together and saying it’s kind of one book. XD)

THESE BOOKS. I’m utterly addicted to the Afterlands and all these fairytale etc. retellings, not to mention the humor and the characters I love. ❀ Plus they’re really clever and well-written, and just… really good books. With just a smidge of alternate-1920s and steampunk to spice things up. AND TWISTS. Definitely one of my favorites of the year! (Nick! Cordelia! Malcolm! CRISPIN!)

3. Halayda (by Sarah Delena White)

I don’t know exactly how to describe this, but it’s epic and Fae and perilous, and I absolutely love Taylan and Zad and the snark and romance and fantasy, with snatches of Celtic mythology re-imagined in there. It’s just a sweeping, glimmering fantasy epic, and I love it. ^_^ I read this as an ebook with the Fellowship of Fantasy book club, but I had to get a paperback copy for myself for Christmas because I needed to own it! I hope to re-read it someday. πŸ™‚

4. Magician’s Ward (by Patricia C. Wrede)

Regency Fantasy! Which is a genre I discovered this year, and I’m in love. I haven’t really read anything else in this genre, but I’m excited to read the prequel to this, soon. All that to say, this was a Regency England setting with magic and fantasy, and a former street thief girl trying to learn to be a “proper” lady of the time (with hysterical results), and also one of my favorite characters, a magician named Mairelon. It was just so much fun!

5. The Fatal Tree (by Stephen R. Lawhead)

The Bright Empires series has meant SO much to me that I’m having a hard time putting it into words. Which is the main reason I have yet to review this. I WILL, I just… How do you sum up an epic series like this? But I read this series at just the right time in my life, and this book was a great conclusion (I mean, how could it not be??), and I love basically every element of it! It’s a brilliantly written series, I adore all the characters, the plots and twists and timey-ness were fascinating, and the series was deep and just… they’re Really Good Books, okay? I will talk more about this at length, but it’s probably the single most influential series I’ve read for many years. ❀ I HIGHLY recommend trying out The Skin Map if you haven’t, so that you can get to this one — which definitely deserves a place in my top 5.

6. Sentinel / Arbiter (by Jamie Foley)

These have to go together, since I think of them as practically one book. And I NEED book 3. NEED. Jet is one of my favorite characters of all time — he’s just so awesome! — and I love his and Darien’s friendship. The world is so original, I really love some of the fantasy elements and can’t wait to see more, they’re super thrilling, and the character interactions and dialog and snark are just SO FUN! I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for the final book and seeing how things work out!

7. Where the Woods Grow Wild (by Nate Philbrick)

This book is sort of like Prydain-meets-Narnia-meets-Wingfeather-Saga. Which is to say, it’s REALLY GOOD. Truly delightful fantasy, skillfully written, quirky, original, and just a lot of fun. It was so imaginative, and any time I say something reminds me of Lloyd Alexander, that is a HIGH mark of praise from me, since that author brought me to fantasy. I really want a sequel! If you haven’t tried this one out, it’s so much fun. πŸ˜€ (I read an ebook version of it for review, but I simply had to get a copy for my sister to read!)

8. Scars of War (by Hazel B. West)

I actually re-read the first two books in this series this year to get ready for this one, because I love this series/characters/world SO MUCH. Because an alternate modern Ireland with medieval aspects and epic warriors who drive fast cars is basically MY FAVORITE. This one was a roadtrip featuring two of my favorite characters (Oberon and Aedan), and a modern Faerie changeling plot, and basically WHAT IS NOT TO LIKE? It was so much fun. ^_^ I need more!

9. Magicians’ Rivalry (by H. L. Burke)

Another buddy story, this is one of my favorite such tales! Auric Spellsmith and Jericho Carver are basically opposites, and they do not get along AT ALL, but they have to work together. Unique magic and a scary land of Faerie and a dash of steampunk make this book a delight to read. Throw in the snark and the dash of romance (because Jericho is in love with Rill, Auric’s sister; queue awkward and ADORABLE) and it’s just SO MUCH FUN. ❀

10. Beren and Luthien (by J. R. R. Tolkien and Christopher Tolkien)

I almost didn’t put this one on here, because it’s not EXACTLY a normal book (being a collection of poetry and prose from various stages of Tolkien’s composing of this tale), and also because I don’t suppose it’s quite how he’d want it. But I’m putting it on anyway, because, despite those problems, it’s still absolutely gorgeous writing (and poetry), and it’s fun to see different stages of the story (even if Tolkien himself might not have wanted people reading his early drafts). The illustrations by Alan Lee are fabulous. And it’s the only new thing by Tolkien I read this year, so NATURALLY it needs to go on my top list. πŸ˜‰ Here’s to 100 years of Beren and Luthien! ❀

11. The Little White Horse (by Elizabeth Goudge)

I can’t describe this story, but it’s so delightful. It’s set in England in the 1800s, and sometimes you wonder if it even IS fantasy or just FEELS like it, but there are so many fun surprises, and it’s simply one of the most beautiful stories I’ve read in my life. It’s historical and fantasy and Christian and all without quite feeling like one of those. It reminds me a little of George MacDonald, and something else, but I don’t know what. It’s like a beautiful original fairytale in novel form. And it was written in 1946, so it has the old style of writing which is fun to read sometimes because it’s DIFFERENT. I also loved its whimsical nature, and all the eccentric characters we meet — I love them all!

Plus, it has two of my favorite quotes:

β€˜I should like this story to be like all the best stories and to end in β€œHappily ever after”.’

and

β€˜In every fairy-tale there is a kernel of truth.’

❀

12. King’s Warrior / Second Son (by Jenelle Leanne Schmidt)

*huggles books* These were so fun! I think my favorite is Yorien’s Hand (book 3, which I re-read this year too), but these were so enjoyable too! I love this more classic kind of epic fantasy, but with its own twists too. And I love the Myth Folk (especially the Dragons. ;)) and just all of it. Best of all are the characters, like Brant and Kiernan Kane (two of my favorites of all time! ❀ ), and all the rest! I just love them SO MUCH. ^_^ I’m really looking forward to finishing this series in the upcoming Minstrel’s Call. πŸ™‚

13. Masters and Beginners (by Daley Downing)

This one’s a straight-up modern fantasy novel, which is a little unusual to make it to a top list, for me — but that’s precisely why this one did, because it was refreshing and fun and didn’t have all the annoying things I don’t like about modern books. πŸ™‚ Plus, FAERIES, and I just love how the Order integrates modern things with fairies and mythology and Biblical things, and it’s fascinating! And I love the characters as well, and just — I’M VERY FOND, OKAY?

14. Moonblood (by Anne Elisabeth Stengl)

I remember enjoying Heartless and Veiled Rose, but this seems to be where Goldstone Wood gets going, so I’m SO happy I read this with the Imps of Goldstone Wood fan club on Goodreads (I hope we’ll get back to reading the books together sometime!). I so enjoyed getting to see more of Eanrin and Imraldera and Leo and Rosie and BEANA and Oeric and basically ALL MY PRECIOUS PEOPLE. It’s gorgeous and perilous and such great Fae-fantasy, and just excuse me while I hug it. Plus so well-written. o.o I need to read Starflower…

15. The Reluctant Godfather (by Allison Tebo)

And lastly, a simply utterly fun little story! This charming novella-length retelling of Cinderella was simply a BLAST to read! Burndee the fairy godfather is SO grouchy and it’s hysterical! I love the snark and dialog and humor and fairytale twists. And of course Burndee himself! Isn’t a fairy godfather who hates humans and just loves to bake cakes original? I love him. XD It reminded me a little of Broken Glass (my FAVORITE Cinderella retelling of all time) and of the Talesend books a bit (because humorous and fairytales), and it’s just so fun. ^_^


So there you have my favorite books of the last year!

Have you read any of these or are any on your TBR? Because YOU NEED TO!

And what was your top favorite(s) read of 2017?

Tell me all in the comments!

Thanks for reading! πŸ™‚

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer

Nightstand Books: January 2018

It’s time for Nightstand Books!

(Meme created by DJ Edwardson and Jenelle Schmidt; sharing the books on our “nightstand” the first Wednesday of the month.)

I can never be sure how much I’ll end up reading in a month, but here are some things I’d like to read in January, or soon, at any rate. πŸ˜‰ (All titles link to the books on Goodreads, if you’re curious to check them out!)

(All the books in this stack except for Mind Writer were my Christmas presents! I also got a gorgeous copy of Halayda which makes me happy. ^_^)

  • The Heroes of Tolkien by David Day — A gorgeous book I got for Christmas from a very dear friend! ❀ I’m so looking forward to reading this, and looking at all the pretty pictures. πŸ˜‰
  • A Matter of Magic by Patricia C. Wrede — Technically, I’ve read the second half of this. …Say what now? That is, it’s a collection containing Mairelon the Magician and Magicians’ Ward, the latter of which I read (and reviewed) at the beginning of LAST year and was one of my top favorites of the year. ❀ So I’m hoping to read the first book finally, and maybe re-read the second while I’m at it. XD Because Regency Fantasy and humor and Mairelon!
  • Mind Writer by Mike Lynch and Lisa Godfrees — I KNOW, I’ve been saying I’ll read this for ages; but I will! It’s just very outside of my reading comfort zone and the size keeps daunting me and I have no idea why… But it’s on my read-soon list.
  • (Not pictured: I just re-read (aloud) The Stroke of Eleven by Kyle Robert Shultz to my younger siblings. Yes, I did read it last month already; your point? XD Now that they know the spoilers — aaahh! — we’re currently reading Christmas in Talesend together too, and it’s so fun. :D)

Those are the ones I really want to read this month.

The other three on there are Christmas presents which I would so like to read soon, but we’ll see if they happen this month or if review-reading takes priority and these end up moving to February.

They are:

  • The Midnight Queen by Sylvia Izzo Hunter — This is also Regency Fantasy and I know absolutely nothing about it besides the genre, so we’ll see if I like it. XD
  • The Diamond Thief by Sharon Gosling — This is a YA novel set in the Victorian era (and may be slightly steampunk? I’m not sure.) about a jewel thief girl and a detective. That’s all I know about it but I’m really excited to try it out. πŸ™‚
  • The Icarus Hunt by Timothy Zahn — Again, this may be in danger of not-getting-around-to-reading-it-for-awhile-due-to-genre. Because I don’t actually love Sci-Fi all that much and have to be in the mood for it because 99% of the time I’d rather just read fantasy?? BUT it’s Timothy Zahn (I liked his Star Wars trilogy I read years ago; much better than the new depressing movies, which are fun but dark) and Jenelle speaks highly of this book, so. I’d been wanting to get it from my library for ages but it’s now labeled MISSING in their system so I gave up and got it for myself for Christmas because I want to read this!

Le E-Nightstand

My current to-reads in e-book form… (Which is why I suspect I won’t get to all of those physical ones this month. XD)

  • Disowned by Sarah Addison-Fox — The lone review book I didn’t get to before November hit, and thus has rolled over through NaNo and Christmas season and now awaits me in the new year. I’m quite excited for it! πŸ™‚ (Especially since the genre it falls under has recently been named. Because I’m weird like that and love being organized and categorized. XD)
  • The Last Motley by DJ Edwardson — I’m in the middle of this one right now and it’s excellent so far! The writing is fabulous and I’m sooo intrigued by this fantasy story! o.o I’m reading it for review, so expect to hear all about it on this blog sometime in the coming weeks!
  • Presumption and Partiality by Rebekah Jones — So excited to read the final Vintage Jane Austen book! I’ve loved all the books in that series by different authors thus far, so I’m really looking forward to this one! Plus, it’s a Pride and Prejudice retelling. Has to be a fact in its favor, there. πŸ˜‰
  • The Lord of Dreams by C. J. Brightley — This is the Fellowship of Fantasy book of the month for January, and I’m excited to try it out! It sounds intriguing! ^_^ (I’m always up for Faeries!)

And since I didn’t do a post like this in December… here: have a belated couple of pics of my December nightstand! πŸ™‚

  • I finally read On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness! *is so proud* Now I know about Peet the Sockman (EEP!) and HAS ANYONE ELSE SEEN THE ADORABLE SHORT FILM THEY JUST RELEASED?? It’s so so cute and I loved watching it and NEED MORE and also that singing bit absolutely SLEW me. SO GORGEOUS. ❀
  • The Stroke of Eleven was mindblowing, of course, as I mentioned in my review. I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH MYSELF, HALP.
  • Rulers and Mages was a very interesting read, which I hope to review soon. I’m torn about a certain ship though… *shifty eyes* And a couple things. But otherwise it was mostly really good, and faeriiiiie things! πŸ™‚
  • And a couple of random fantasy Christmas-esque stories, Hogfather by Terry Pratchett, and a collection of dragon Christmas stories called We Three Dragons. All of which I enjoyed.

I don’t always share all the short stories I read, but these were so cute together! Links: Nyssa Glass prequel (Christmassy!), Dreamings and Muses, Ceaseless, Distorted Glass, Christmas in Talesend. I enjoyed them all. ^_^ (Yay, more Christmassy things!)

What’s on your reading list for this month?

Thanks for reading! πŸ™‚

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer / Deborah O’Carroll

2018 Upcoming Book Releases

Here are some books coming out this year, hopefully!

I have no illusions that I’ll be READING them all this year (there’s ONLY, like, 25 of them… >.> *cough*) but for some reason I keep tabs on books that are releasing soon, so I thought I’d share them with you!

Details and release dates are, of course, subject to change, and this is just the information I’ve gathered, to the best of my knowledge. (Not to mention there are probably a billion other titles releasing this year that just haven’t been announced yet! *collapses under flood of awesome new releases*)

All of the titles below link to somewhere you can find out more about the book, if I could find links. πŸ™‚

In roughly chronological order…


Beneath the Haunting Sea

by Joanna Ruth Meyer

January 9

This is by a Twitter friend of mine, who I met through a mutual love for Diana Wynne Jones novels, so I’m curious about her book — it looks really interesting!

The Lost Plot (The Invisible Library, #4)

by Genevieve Cogman

January 9?

(Not sure on the date, as books that release first in the UK always confuse me…) I have only read the first book in the series, so I need to get to the library (haha) and read the next two. BUT this fourth one sounds fascinating because alternate magical Chicago gangsters from the 1920s and other fun stuff. *nod*

The Thirteenth Knight (Blackfire, #1)

by Kyle Robert Shultz

January?

The dragon Malcolm Blackfire from the Beaumont and Beasley series is getting his own spinoff! Featuring magical artifacts and an interesting jewel thief lady. This is Regency Fantasy and has (I hear) Excalibur, and I COULD NOT BE MORE EXCITED.

Horseman (Crocket & Crane, #1)

by Kyle Robert Shultz

January?

I technically already read this on Wattpad (and you can too!) but I’m so excited for it to be released for real! It’s a magical alternate Wild West with Legend of Sleepy Hollow dashes and is so fun and I love it. XD

The Last Motley

by DJ Edwardson

February 6

The paperback is already out but the kindle version is releasing in February. Look for my review around then! I’ve been wanting to read a fantasy novel from this author for AGES because I love his blog, so I’m excited. πŸ˜€

Minstrel’s Call

by Jenelle Leanne Schmidt

Spring 2018?

I’m BEYOND EXCITED for this wrapping up of The Minstrel’s Song series. I read King’s Warrior and Second Son last year, and re-read Yorien’s Hand (SO MUCH LOVE) and I’m on the edge of my seat to get to read more about these beloved characters! ❀

Sage

by Jamie Foley

March 10

So excited and so nervous for this one! But mostly excited. XD I love Jet SO MUCH and can’t wait to see what all these characters get up to in the conclusion to a trilogy I read most of last year and loved.

The Thirty-Nine Thieves (Beaumont & Beasley, #4)

by Kyle Robert Shultz

January (Maybe)

Nick and Cordelia and Crispin and co. tackle an Aladdin retelling and I’M SO EXCITED! After that explosion of a book which was The Stroke of Eleven, I need more to find out what happens to my precious characters. o.o

King’s War

by Jill Williamson

April 17? June 19?

There are conflicting dates for this one but I THINK one is the hardcover and one the paperback release. I was mildly (read: hugely) devastated by the second book, BUT I’m still looking forward to seeing how this trilogy completes! (So pretty, too…) And then I’ll want to re-read the Blood of Kings trilogy… πŸ˜‰

In the Region of the Summer Stars

by Stephen R. Lawhead

May 15

Mr. Lawhead’s newest novel after the Bright Empires series (which I loved!) — I don’t know much about this other than it being Celtic, and fantasy, both of which intrigue me highly…

The Penderwicks at Last

by Jeanne Birdsall

May 15

The final Penderwick book… I don’t know how I feel about this. o.o Or about what might happen in it! But it’s Penderwicks, so naturally it’s going on my library wishlist!

Song of Leira

by Gillian Bronte Adams

June 5

This is wrapping up the fantasy series which began with Orphan’s Song and Songkeeper and I’m on pins and needles to know what happens. o.o (THAT COVER, THOUGH!)

A Thousand Perfect Notes

by C. G. Drews

June 7

This is by Cait @ Paper Fury, who finally has a book coming out! It’s a modern story and doesn’t sound like quiiite the sort of thing I read very often, but I’m excited for her and might end up reading it at some point. πŸ™‚

The Orphan’s Wish

by Melanie Dickerson

June 26

Another Hagenheim book, this one is also an Aladdin one (so many of those!) and I always enjoy this author, so we’ll see how it is. πŸ™‚

Fawkes

by Nadine Brandes

July 10

I’ve never read this author before because I can’t stand dystopian, so when I heard she’s branching into a new genre, I became curious to see how this book will turn out! Alternate history/fantasy/gunpowder plot? Definitely sounds fascinating!

RUMORED

Please keep in mind that these are things that may or may not release this year or at all, so. They’re just notes I’ve made of rumored books, because I’m weird like that. XD

Lightporter by C.B. Cook

Superheroes and fun and Blaze and Anvil! Want. πŸ˜€

 

(Cover not final)

Bitter Winter (and No Chance Meeting?) by Jaye L. Knight

I’m not caught up on the Ilyon Chronicles by any means, but I do keep up with the releases; I’m curious about Jaye’s modern story too.

The Wolf Prince by Claire Banschbach

Book 2 of the Faeries of Myrnius, this sounds super fun. πŸ™‚

The City Beyond the Glass by Suzannah Rowntree

A Twelve Dancing Princesses retelling set in Renaissance Italy. I definitely want in on this!

The Profile Match by Jill Williamson

I hear Jill is hoping to finish up the Spencer series, which I’m behind on, but I love keeping up with what she’s releasing anyway. πŸ™‚

Untitled: another Legends of Light novella by Hope Ann

Continuing the series I started reading in Burning Rose, this is a Twelve Dancing Princesses retelling, so obviously I NEED IT.

Volume 3 of The Order of the Twelve Tribes by Daley Downing

And of course I need more of the modern/faerie goodness of this series which started with Masters and Beginners & Rulers and Mages. πŸ™‚

More books by Kyle Shultz

Of course I’m excited about these, whatever they’ll be, because I’m obsessed with the Afterverse BECAUSE RETELLINGS AND HUMOR AND BELOVED CHARACTERS. (Don’t get me started on how nervous I am about all the MEEPery though. XD)


And there you are! Are you excited about any of these? Are there any I’m missing that you have on your upcoming-releases-I-need radar? Let’s chat about book excitement!!

Thanks for reading! πŸ™‚

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer / Deborah O’Carroll