POLITY: AGENT CORMAC: LINE WAR
-scifi-the final book in the Agent Cormac series. Cormac realizes that Earth Central and the other AI's have allowed the Jain tech to grow so as to spur humanity onward, only they started losing control. Things are brought back under control, but Cormac has become truly post-human and is now the bogeyman to the AI's. They had better do their best by humanity or Cormac will come and get them. Quite an interesting conclusion and I'm definitely looking forward to reading more in the Polity Universe.
EMPIRE: MISTRESS OF THE EMPIRE
-J. Wurts & R. Feist-epub-656
-fantasy-the conclusion to the Empire trilogy. Turns out the Black Robes are keeping the Empire stagnant so that they can do as they please. Mara loses her son, another child and her father in law to the machinations. Ends up going outside of Kelewan to other nations to find magic to combat the Assembly. Comes back, puts her son on the throne, [the Emperor had been killed by rivals], stares down the Assembly and gets on with her life. Has to separate from her husband for political reasons but Kevin comes back as an Ambassador and it is obvious they will comfort each other. This seemed more of Wurts's writing with Feist rubberstamping his name. Lots of descriptiveness of surroundings and feelings and everything. I doubt I'll ever read anything by Wurts again.
THE TAU CETI AGENDA: ONE DAY ON MARS
-military scifi-to much swearing. I just gave up around page 50. I don't care if I'm reading about marines in the year 2300, I don't want to read strings of profanity after strings of profanity.
CIRQUE DU FREAK: A LIVING NIGHTMARE
-YA fantasy-two best friends go to a freakshow that will change their lives forever. A real vampire works for the show. One of the boys wants to become a vampire, but is rejected on grounds of having bad blood. The other boy steals a spider and it ends up biting his friend. The only way to save his friend is to go to the vampire and ask for help. The vampire gives him a serum, but requires that he become the vampire's assistant and become half-vampire. Darren agrees to save Steve. Darren fakes his death so he can go away in peace but Steve isn't fooled and vows vengeance on Darren and the vampire for taking what he wanted. A wonderfully delightful ya book. Sometimes it is nice to read something where you know exactly what is going to happen.
CONRAD STARGARD: CROSSTIME ENGINEER
-scifi-what a joke. A polish engineer is transported back in time to around 1200 in Poland. He sets out to make a difference. You can tell this was written by an engineer. Sex was second to the explanations of how each improvement Conrad wanted worked. I skipped pages at a time when stuff got technical. Not worth anyone's money.
CIRQUE DU FREAK: THE VAMPIRE'S ASSISTANT
-YA fantasy-the adventures of Darren as he is with the Cirque Du Freak. He refuses to drink human blood and it almost kills him in the end. We are also introduced to Mr Tiny, the very obvious villain of the series.
GUARDIANS OF THE FLAME: THE SILVER CROWN
-fantasy-six years or so after the previous book. Carl is still the main character and still has a spear up his butt about slavery. He ends up becoming the duke of a country. I don't like Carl. He is a whiner and a self-pitying fool.
-fiction- in an alternate world, there are 2 main empires, the American Empire, and the Asian Empire. Each year the Asian Empire takes a class of junior high students, drops them off in a remote place and has them fight to death. 3 students stick together and make a plan to survive. 2 of them get off the island and the book ends with them running from the police. Overall, I would call this a japanese version of Lord of the Flies where the fallen humanity of humans comes to the surface. This was very violent, with every student, but the 2 escaping, dying. Explores ideas of trust, freedom, free will, the sneakiness of big government, love, hate and the lack of emotions. It was creepy, but brought the idea of people turning on each other up to date with modern times [as opposed to Lord of the Flies back in the WWII era].
THE STRAIN: STRAIN
-G. Del Toro & C. Hogan-epub-353
-thriller, fantasy- vampires are real, but leaving humanity alone for the most part. One vampire decides to change things. He hooks up with a rich, dying guy in America. Flies over to NY and starts a chain reaction of vampire turnings as the first step in a war to take out humanity. Focuses on a guy from the CDC [Center for Disease Control] and turns this into a medical/virus thriller. Vampires do their thing with some parasitic thing. Made it real interesting and looking forward to more in the series.
LADY PENITENT: SACRIFICE OF THE WIDOW
-fantasy-a direct sequel to the War of the Spider Queen series. The only tie-in characters though are the gods involved and Halistra [a dark elf who tried to kill Lolth in the previous series]. Basically a continuation of the war between Lolth and her children to gain control of all the Drow. Nothing spectacular, but I wasn't rolling my eyes like in some of the Drizz't books.
CIRQUE DU FREAK: TUNNELS OF BLOOD
-YA fantasy-Darren finds out more about his mentors past and about how the Vampire Society is setup. There is a splinter faction called the Vampaneze who kill when they feed. One goes rogue in the city Mr Crepsley grew up in, so he goes with Darren to take him out. Still enjoying!
CONRAD STARGARD: THE HIGH TECH KNIGHT
-fantasy-Conrad kills a bunch of knights who had a group of children slaves. This gets him in hot water and he has to fight a duel with a champion, the very knight he had a run in with when he got to Old Poland back in the first book. Frankowski is an idiot. Conrad still has the right to bed women, but Frankowski portrays it as ok with Conrad's lover, because "Fair's fair". Just continues to show his sexism and engineering genes. And yet it is still a fun read once your eyes stop rolling.
STAR WARS: THE FORCE UNLEASHED II
-scifi-a blase sequel. Starkiller is either resurrected or successfully cloned [even though it is stated, and shown in other novels, that Jedi clones never turn out ok.] Thankfully there was enough stuff happening that the stupid characters didn't get in the way. Ends with Starkiller and his lady friend running off. It doesn't make sense, so powerful a force user unsensed by the Emperor and not completely hunted down by Vader. The story was weak, Starkiller is an extremely 2d character and while there are cameos of future greats, they come across as the sops to fans that their appearance really is. Books like this are what will destroy the Star Wars line.
-classic-a shorter story about a russian teacher who ends up addicted to gambling and throwing his life away. Ends with him basically saying "I'll give up gambling, tomorrow." Very confusing at the onset with trying to figure out who is who and what is going on. A good introduction to Dostoyevsky's style but without the weight of some of his tomes.
-med-thriller-a scientist mucks about with genes and his son turns out to be a super genius, with no conscience. Son and father die and the mother is left to destroy the final baby that was a dry run experiment. I read this back in highschool and thought it was wicked cool. Now, it seems almost blase. The whole premise that super intelligence squeezes out emotions just rings false in my ears. A throw away read, but I do want to read at least 1 more of Cook's books before I say anything about the author overall.
THE VIDESSOS CYCLE: THE MISPLACED LEGION
-historical fantasy-a roman legion in Gaul ends up on another world through magic. They become mercenaries for the Vidession Empire. Enjoyed this very much. Magic and Roman legion tactics, a cool combo. The problem is that I had a very badly formatted copy. Whoever had scanned this did it as one solid block of text. No paragraph breaks, no indents, nothing. Calibre split it up into 4 xhtml chunks, but my reader had to chug through each whole section whenever turning a page and man, it killed my battery and the flow of the story. Am seriously thinking about working on it with Sigil and making a nice epub copy. Will see.
CONRAD STARGARD: THE RADIANT WARRIOR
-fantasy-Conrad is now ready to start building his army. I give up and admit that this series is utter trash but I still keep reading it. I'll probably read until I run out of the books. I feel ashamed and dirty now ;-)
INHERIT THE STARS
-scifi-a muddle of humanity from earth, from another planet and some aliens from the same planet. This was written back in '78, probably considered hard scifi then. I was actually entertained. Pretty good for a novel that has no action or fighting or anything non-cerebral.
1 Unfinished Novel