Ricardo de Avila—now called Rick—would have followed Coronado anywhere. Yes, that Coronado, the conquistador. But Coronado never found what he sought—and Rick found immortality as a turned-against-his-will vampire.
Five hundred years later, Rick has spent his life going against the immortal grain. While he at first thought he was the only self-named-demon in existence—so ignorant of the truth he didn’t even know he was called vampire—now he keeps to himself and protects his mortal family. He’s spent his days as a bartender, helped a legendary gunslinger, appointed himself Master of Santa Fe, and now discovered a church hidden under the Vatican.
Immortal life is no piece of cake.
It’s been years since I read any of the Kitty books (Looking back, it seems I stopped reading after book six). I enjoyed them, and I have no idea why I stopped reading, so this was run return to that world. I love how different Rick is from traditional or more-popular vampire tropes. He’s a loner, and he’s fine with that. He didn’t even know what he was, thinking himself a demon, but drama and trouble seem to dog his steps. A quick, fun read.
Carrie Vaughn is a bestselling author. The Immortal Conquistador is her newest novel.
(Galley courtesy of Tachyon Publications in exchange for an honest review.)
Dr. Penelope Bryne has been shunned and ridiculed by the scientific community for her theories about Atlantis. Until a woman is sacrificed in Venice, and an ancient script is found at the murder site and the police need Penelope’s help.
Alexis Donato has spent the last few years trying to destroy Penelope’s career from afar, so she doesn’t discover the truth about Atlantis: it did exist, and seven of its magicians escaped its destruction.
With Carnivale erupting around them, Penelope and Alexis will have to work together to keep dark magic from pulling Venice into the sea—just like Atlantis.
I love the tales of Atlantis and I love archeology, so this book sounded exactly suited for me. However…this felt more like a rough draft than a polished novel. Some of the relationships (like Penelope’s friendship with the detective) escalated too quickly to be believable, and there were a few too many instances of things conveniently/coincidentally working out for me to be fully invested in and believing the story. At this point, I wasn’t satisfied enough with the writing to want to read more of the series, as fascinating as the premise was.
Amy Kuivalainen likes to combine fantasy, mythology, and magic in her writing. The Immortal City is her newest novel.
(Galley courtesy of BHC Press via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.)
Janzen’s life as a package courier in Cleveland, Ohio isn’t glamorous. He works, hangs out at a hole-in-the-wall bar, and goes home drunk to his dog. It’s a life, just a dull one. Five years ago, Janzen was an apprentice Artificer, living on the edge in a group of practitioners intent on fighting evil, but now he’s alone.
So, Janzen works, drinks, and sleeps. And repeats. Until the day he’s delivering a package and finds himself fighting for his life against a Stalker—a creature from the Abyss—defending a young witch against the dark predator.
Now Janzen must figure out who sent the Stalker, delving into his past for any scrap of help he can find, before the monster succeeds in killing him—and the witch. All in a day’s work, right?
This book. From the first page, I was drawn in by Janzen’s dry, self-deprecating humor and his unflinching honesty. He left the magical life behind years ago, but he doesn’t hesitate to step back into his role when danger threatens a young stranger. This character made the book—but the whole gritty urban fantasy/detective noir feeling didn’t hurt, either. A great read!
Lawrence Davis is the author of Blunt Force Magic, the first book in The Monsters and Men trilogy.
(Galley provided by WildBlue Press in exchange for an honest review.)