Posts Tagged ‘bitter blood’

Today is a great day to be a book buyer! So many fabulous new releases, including BLOOD TRADE by Faith Hunter, BRAKING POINTS by Tammy Kaehler, THE WOLF PRINCE by Karen Whiddon, the trade paperback of BITTER BLOOD by Rachel Caine and my friend Cecily White’s debut PROPHECY GIRL. Details below!

blood trade BLOOD TRADE by Faith Hunter (New York Times bestselling Jane Yellowrock series, Book 6)

BLOOD TRADE is a perfect blend of dark fantasy and mystery with a complex and tough vampire killing heroine.” – All Things Urban Fantasy

ane Yellowrock is a shape-shifting skinwalker who’s always up for a fight—even if it means putting her life on the line…

The Master of Natchez, Mississippi has a nasty problem on his hands. Rogue vampires—those who follow the Naturaleza and believe that humans should be nothing more than prey to be hunted—are terrorizing his city. Luckily, he knows the perfect skinwalker to call in to take back the streets.

But what he doesn’t tell Jane is that there’s something different about these vamps. Something that makes them harder to kill—even for a pro like Jane. Now, her simple job has turned into a fight to stay alive…and to protect the desperately ill child left in her care.

braking points BRAKING POINTS by Tammy Kaehler (Kate Reilly Mystery, Book 2)

“Action from page one ensures an engrossing read with abundant twists in the plot. This is certainly for Danica Patrick fans and pairs nicely with Simon Wood’s racing series or Steve Ulfelder’s Conway Sax series.” – Library Journal

“Kate’s second outing is just as fast-paced as her first, balancing mystery and racing adventure all the way to the checkered flag.” – Kirkus Reviews

Kate Reilly can’t remember a worse time in her life, on-track or off. She wrecks her racecar at Road America in Wisconsin, sending a visiting NASCAR star to the hospital, and loses her cool on-camera, only to end the day by discovering her boyfriend with a friend of hers. A dead friend.With little time to grieve, Kate finds herself the pariah of the racing world, the target of vicious e-mail messages, death threats, and a frenzy of blame on racing sites and blogs, including an influential, anonymous blogger who’s trying to get her fired. But nothing is as bad as knowing her friend’s killer is still out there—and aiming at Kate.She’s riding a roller coaster of emotion, juggling an exciting new sponsor, a boyfriend she’s not sure she can trust, and new-found family she doesn’t want to claim. Dodging unfavorable media attention and a pit reporter with a bias against women in racing, Kate redeems herself by delivering stunning performances behind the wheel at the next race: Petit Le Mans, the ten-hour endurance classic.The championship race weekend and an undercurrent of threats on all sides rev Kate’s nerves to their limits. From on-track action, to sponsor parties, to the Series awards banquet, she’s part of the action, uncovering motives, secrets, and powerful ambitions. Ultimately she learns no one can escape the past—but only a murderer is driven by it.

wolf prince THE WOLF PRINCE by Karen Whiddon

“Original and exciting, the constant tension — both dangerous and sexual — will keep readers on the edge of their seats.” – RT Book Reviews, 4 1/2 Stars

Willow was unlike any princess he’d ever met…

As heir to the throne, Ruben must choose an appropriate mate to preserve his royal bloodline—despite his fear that his true nature will destroy them both. Yet the female he craves above all others is a dangerous combination of fairy and shifter, a mesmerizing creature who inspires both passion and suspicion. Then violence strikes the castle, and the two are forced to track a killer into perilous magical territory. But with treachery everywhere, will Willow and Ruben’s growing bond be enough to shift the fate of their two kingdoms?

BitterBlood BITTER BLOOD by Rachel Caine (New York Times betseslling Morganville Vampires series, Book 13)

For years, the human and vampire residents of Morganville, Texas, have managed to co-exist in peace. But now that the threat to the vampires has been defeated, the human residents are learning that the gravest danger they face is the enemy within…

Thanks to the eradication of the parasitic creatures known as the draug, the vampires of Morganville have been freed of their usual constraints. With the vampires indulging their every whim, the town’s human population is determined to hold on to their lives by taking up arms. But college student Claire Danvers isn’t about to take sides, considering she has ties to both the humans and the vampires.

To make matters worse, a television show comes to Morganville looking for ghosts, just as vampire and human politics collide. Now, Claire and her friends have to figure out how to keep the peace without ending up on the nightly news…or worse.

prophecy girl PROPHECY GIRL by Cecily White (Angel Academy, Book 1)

Amelie Bennett. . . . Ending the world, one prophecy at a time.

I was born to slay Crossworld demons.

Big black flappy ones, little green squirmy ones. Unfortunately, the only thing getting slain these days is my social life. With my high school under attack, combat classes intensifying, and Academy instructors dropping right and left, I can barely get my homework done, let alone score a bondmate before prom.

Then he shows up.

Jackson Smith-Hailey. Unspeakably hot, hopelessly unattainable, and dangerous in all the right ways. Sure, he’s my trainer. And okay, maybe he hates me. Doesn’t mean I’ll ignore the wicked Guardian chemistry between us. It’s crazy! Every time I’m with him, my powers explode. Awesome, right?

Wrong.

Now my teachers think I’m the murderous Graymason destined to bring down our whole race of angelbloods. Everyone in New Orleans is hunting me. The people I trusted want me dead. Jack and I have five days to solve the murders, prevent a vampire uprising, and thwart the pesky prophecy foretelling his death by my hand.  Shouldn’t be too difficult.

Getting it done without falling in love. . . that might take a miracle.

I’m a couple of days late posting about this week’s new releases, but it’s been a crazy, busy, wonderful week, and I’m just glad to be doing so now!  Happy Book Birthday to Rachel Caine, Steven Harper, Bryan Anderson and David Mack!

BITTER BLOOD by Rachel Caine

Latest in the blockbuster, New York Times-bestselling Morganville Vampires series

Blurb:

For years, the human and vampire residents of Morganville, Texas, have managed to co-exist in peace. But now that the threat to the vampires has been defeated, the human residents are learning that the gravest danger they face is the enemy within…

Thanks to the eradication of the parasitic creatures known as the draug, the vampires of Morganville have been freed of their usual constraints. With the vampires indulging their every whim, the town’s human population is determined to hold on to their lives by taking up arms. But college student Claire Danvers isn’t about to take sides, considering she has ties to both the humans and the vampires.

To make matters worse, a television show comes to Morganville looking for ghosts, just as vampire and human politics collide. Now, Claire and her friends have to figure out how to keep the peace without ending up on the nightly news…or worse.

THE DRAGON MEN by Steven Harper

Third in the amazing steampunk series The Clockwork Empire (really, really, really not kidding, y’all – this one blew me away)

Blurb:

As China prepares to become the ultimate power in an era of extraordinary invention and horror, Alice Michaels’ fate lies inside the walls of the forbidden kingdom….

Gavin Ennock has everything a man could desire—except time. As the clockwork plague consumes his body and mind, it drives him increasingly mad and fractures his relationship with his fiancée, Alice, Lady Michaels. Their only hope is that the Dragon Men of China can cure him.

But a power-mad general has seized the Chinese throne in a determined offensive to conquer Asia, Britain—indeed, the entire world. He has closed the country’s borders to all foreigners. The former ruling dynasty, however, is scheming to return the rightful heir to power. Their designs will draw Gavin and Alice down a treacherous path strewn with intrigue and power struggles. One wrong step will seal Gavin’s fate…and determine the future of the world.

NO TURNING BACK by Bryan Anderson with David Mack

One Man’s Inspiring Story of Courage, Determination and Hope

Blurb:

The word conquer has changed meaning for Bryan Anderson. As a U.S. Army Sergeant in Iraq, it meant taking down the enemy. After becoming Iraq’s fourth triple amputee from a roadside explosive, what he had to conquer got a bit more personal.

On October 23, 2005, the moment Bryan looked down and realized he no longer had legs, he cracked a joke. It was a tragedy that could break many, but Bryan transformed it into something positive, something that propelled him forward. Despite grueling surgeries and rehabilitation, his goal has always been bigger than simply walking again. Making the most of life, he went for it, learning how to snowboard, water-ski, rock climb, and skateboard with his condition—even winning himself some gold medals to place next to his Purple Heart.

In this inspiring memoir, Bryan shares his infectious love for life that touches anyone who’s faced hardship. Anyone, in any circumstance, can overcome the toughest challenges, by not just surviving, but thriving. No Turning Back is a testament to pure hard work, perseverance, and hope for a better life—no matter what shape it takes.

I’m extremely pleased today to have two fabulous men of urban fantasy to introduce to you: D.B. Jackson and the hero from his new Thieftaker series, Ethan Kaille.  Kat Richardson calls the series, “A beautiful balance of magic and crime, history and fantasy that was fast-paced, compelling, and completely absorbing. Historical fantasy that reads like an old-school crime novel, as if Raymond Chandler were channeling Jonathan Swift. I loved it!”  I think this about says it all!  Before I introduce Ethan Kaille, a few other things to report:

In honor of her upcoming Morganville Vampires release, BITTER BLOOD (coming November 6th), Rachel Caine has some really fun “Decision Morganville” campaign videos up on her website with more on the way.  You might want to check them out…if you know what’s good for you.

Heroes and Heartbreakers is running contests with some fabulous prizes up on their sight, in honor of Halloween, including prize packs of books by Faith Hunter and books by Kalayna Price, Ilona Andrews and Karen Chance.  There’s also a vampire prize pack.  Enter soon for a chance to win!

Last, but certainly not least, the Crossroads Blog Tour is in full swing.  Answer all the scavenger hunt questions correctly for a chance to win a Kindle pre-loaded with books by all of the participating authors.  The full list of blogs, participants, etc., is here.  If you’re looking for me, I’ve been up at Most-Wanted Monsters, Confessions of a Bookaholic, and Late Bloomer.  Today, Christine Fonseca and I will be appearing on Mundie Moms, so check us out.

And now, without further ado, I present to you Ethan Kaille, hero of  THIEFTAKER and, soon, the sequel, THIEVES’ QUARRY, both from Tor Books:

My name is Ethan Kaille.  I am a thieftaker and conjurer.  Perhaps you’ve heard my name.

As a thieftaker in Boston, I am accustomed to treating with the town’s less savory denizens.  As a rival to the lovely and dangerous Sephira Pryce, the self-proclaimed “Empress of the South End,” I am also used to having my life threatened on a regular basis, either by Sephira herself, or by her toughs, Nigel, Nap, and Gordon (she employs others, but these are the three who harry me most often).  And as a conjurer living among men and women who equate any form of spellmaking with devilry and witchcraft, I have reconciled myself to living in constant fear of discovery and execution.

Until today, though, I believed that I had witnessed all the wonders and terrors that the streets of Boston have to offer.  I was wrong.

For today, Sephira Pryce summoned me to her home for a most unusual interview.  I say summoned, because even Sephira’s most genteel invitations carry with them the thinly veiled threat of violence should her request be rebuffed.  When I arrived at her home, Sephira invited me to sup with her.  I ate a bit of her food and drank a glass of what I admit was an excellent Madeira wine, taking care to sample only those foods and drink she herself had taken.  I am certain that the woman is not above poisoning a rival.  Her toughs stood off to the side, saying little, but watching me, and making clear with their expressions that any misstep on my part would be rewarded with a beating.

After telling me how honored I should be to have been invited to her home, Sephira informed me that she had spoken with a time witch, a woman who could travel to another time and place and report on events there.  I am familiar with many magicks, and have heard rumor of such powers, and so I was not as skeptical as you, dear reader, might expect.

But what Sephira told me next, did give me pause.  It seems — according to the time witch — that tales of my rivalry with Sephira have been retold, and even committed to paper, by a writer working nearly two hundred and fifty years in the future.  I received this news with a modicum of surprise and puzzlement.  Why would the mundane concerns of two Boston thieftakers in the year 1765 be of interest to anyone living in so distant a future?  I asked Sephira as much, and in doing so, inadvertently struck at the core of the matter, at least so far as she is concerned.

“Because of you,” she said, her mouth twisting, as if the words themselves tasted bitter on her tongue.

“Because of me?”

“Well, not you so much as your bloody magicking.  It seems the readers of this so-called writer are fascinated by your conjurings.  They see you as some sort of hero.  Apparently they fail to grasp the fact that without your witchery you would be nothing, that it is by sheer good fortune and your conjuring tricks that you manage to make yourself any sort of ‘rival’ to me.”

“And this bothers you,” I said, not bothering to mask my amusement.

“Of course it bothers me!” she said, her eyes like daggers.  “I am Sephira Pryce, Empress of the South End, and the most renowned and successful thieftaker this town has ever known.  I am a friend to no less a personage than the Governor of the Province, not to mention representatives of the Crown here in  Boston.  And you . . .”  She shook her head, her shining black curls shimmering in the candlelight.  “You live in a room that is barely the size of my wardrobe, over a cooperage that stinks of sweat and smoke and stale leather.  You earn in a year what I make in a fortnight.  And somehow you are the hero?”

She reached for her goblet with a shaking hand, her cheeks flushed.  But with a sip of wine and a moment’s silence, she appeared to compose herself.  When she spoke again, it was in a calmer voice.

“I enjoy my fame, and I want for nothing.  My . . . concerns about these erroneous accounts are more for the people of the future than for you and me.  We both know what you are and what I am, but these others — they are being presented with a skewed vision of Boston and our time.”

I nodded, managing not to laugh at her vanity and her lies.  “I see.  And so what would you suggest we do about this?”

She considered me for several moments, her eyes narrowed.  “To be honest, I had considered having you killed.  That would have put an end to the problem.  Except that this future writer would most likely have portrayed your murder as an act of petulance and jealousy on my part, which would serve only to make matters worse.”

“Yes, those nettlesome writers.  Leave it to them to twist a simple killing into something unseemly.”

“Exactly,” she said.  “So instead, we are going to try something else.”

I felt my stomach tightening.  I had a feeling that whatever notion she had settled on would be little better than my murder.  But even I was not prepared for what she said next.

“You, Ethan, are going to teach me to conjure.”

I gaped at her.  “What?”

“That way we’ll be on equal footing, and those future readers who find your spells so fascinating will read with wonder of my exploits as well as yours.”

“I can’t teach you to conjure,” I said, shaking off my shock at her solution.

“Someone taught you.”

“Yes, my mother did.  Just as her mother taught her.  But I have conjuring blood in my veins.  You don’t, Sephira.  And without it, you can’t cast spells, no matter how much I teach you.”

“Nonsense.  I don’t need different blood.  I just need the knowledge that you already possess.  If you can cast spells so can I.  And you’re going to teach me how.”  She shot a meaningful look at her men.  “Or we’ll return to my first idea.”

I considered my options, and decided that I had few. “Very well,” I said.  I picked up the fork from my place setting and dragged the tines across the back of my hand, making four parallel cuts in my skin.  Blood welled from the wounds.

Sephira cried out.  Her men lunged for me.  But I spoke the spell too quickly.

Dormite omnes, ex cruore evocatum!”  Slumber, all of them, conjured from blood.

Her men fell to the floor in a brawny heap; Sephira slumped in her chair.  They would awaken before long.  But by then I would be safely away.  I stood, drained a second cup of wine, and smiled.

“So ends your first and last lesson,” I said, and walked out.

*****

D.B. Jackson is also David B. Coe, the award-winning author of a dozen fantasy novels. His first book as D.B. Jackson, Thieftaker, volume I of the Thieftaker Chronicles, is now available; the second volume, Thieves’ Quarry, will be released next summer. D.B. lives on the Cumberland Plateau with his wife and two teenaged daughters. They’re all smarter and prettier than he is, but they keep him around because he makes a mean vegetarian fajita. When he’s not writing he likes to hike, play guitar, and stalk the perfect image with his camera.

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