Waiting on Wednesday: The Price of Blood by Patricia Bracewell

waiting on wednesday

the price of blood by patricia bracewellThe Price of Blood, Emma of Normandy Trilogy #2 by Patricia Bracewell
Release Date: February 5, 2015

Menaced by Vikings and enemies at court, Queen Emma defends her children and her crown in a riveting medieval adventure

Readers first met Emma of Normandy in Patricia Bracewell’s gripping debut novel, Shadow on the Crown. Unwillingly thrust into marriage to England’s King Æthelred, Emma has given the king a son and heir, but theirs has never been a happy marriage. In The Price of Blood, Bracewell returns to 1006 when a beleaguered Æthelred, still haunted by his brother’s ghost, governs with an iron fist and a royal policy that embraces murder.

As tensions escalate and enmities solidify, Emma forges alliances to protect her young son from ambitious men—even from the man she loves. In the north there is treachery brewing, and when Viking armies ravage England, loyalties are shattered and no one is safe from the sword.
Rich with intrigue, compelling personalities, and fascinating detail about a little-known period in history, The Price of Blood will captivate fans of both historical fiction and fantasy novels such as George R. R. Martin’s Game of Thrones series.

SHADOW ON THE CROWN, the first book in Patricia Bracewell’s trilogy about Emma of Normandy, was one of my favorite books of 2013. I was sooooo excited when I saw the cover and summary for book two, THE PRICE OF BLOOD. This is historical fiction just the way I like it: realistic and dark, with an incredibly strong woman at the forefront. February cannot come quickly enough: I need this book now! I scavenged the Internet for everything I could find about Emma after I finished SHADOW ON THE CROWN, but I’d much rather read the continuation of her story from Patricia than watch another documentary :D

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Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.

– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury

waiting on wednesday

the sin eater's daughter by melinda salisburyThe Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury
Release Date: February 24, 2015

Seventeen-year-old Twylla lives in the castle. But although she’s engaged to the prince, Twylla isn’t exactly a member of the court.

She’s the executioner.

As the Goddess embodied, Twylla instantly kills anyone she touches. Each month she’s taken to the prison and forced to lay her hands on those accused of treason. No one will ever love a girl with murder in her veins. Even the prince, whose royal blood supposedly makes him immune to Twylla’s fatal touch, avoids her company.

But then a new guard arrives, a boy whose easy smile belies his deadly swordsmanship. And unlike the others, he’s able to look past Twylla’s executioner robes and see the girl, not the Goddess. Yet Twylla’s been promised to the prince, and knows what happens to people who cross the queen.

However, a treasonous secret is the least of Twylla’s problems. The queen has a plan to destroy her enemies, a plan that requires a stomach-churning, unthinkable sacrifice. Will Twylla do what it takes to protect her kingdom? Or will she abandon her duty in favor of a doomed love?

I first saw THE SIN EATER’S DAUGHTER in a Waiting on Wednesday post on Mother, Gamer, Writer. First, I dig the cover. I really hope it doesn’t change for the final version of the book. Second, I dig the summary. The concept sounds unique: the embodiment of a goddess who kills? We all know how much I love that sort of thing! Give me this book now! I have high hopes — the author says she’s a Slytherin :D

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– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: Star Wars: Tarkin by James Luceno

waiting on wednesday

star wars: tarkin by james lucenoStar Wars: Tarkin by James Luceno
Release Date: November 4, 2014

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…

Bestselling Star Wars veteran James Luceno gives Grand Moff Tarkin the Star Wars: Darth Plagueis treatment, bringing a legendary character from A New Hope to full, fascinating life.

He’s the scion of an honorable and revered family. A dedicated soldier and distinguished legislator. Loyal proponent of the Republic and trusted ally of the Jedi Order. Groomed by the ruthless politician and Sith Lord who would be Emperor, Governor Wilhuff Tarkin rises through the Imperial ranks, enforcing his authority ever more mercilessly . . . and zealously pursuing his destiny as the architect of absolute dominion.

Rule through the fear of force rather than force itself, he advises his Emperor. Under Tarkin’s guidance, an ultimate weapon of unparalleled destruction moves ever closer to becoming a terrifying reality. When the so-called Death Star is completed, Tarkin is confident that the galaxy’s lingering pockets of Separatist rebellion will be brought to heel—by intimidation . . . or annihilation.

Until then, however, insurgency remains a genuine threat. Escalating guerrilla attacks by resistance forces and newfound evidence of a growing Separatist conspiracy are an immediate danger the Empire must meet with swift and brutal action. And to bring down a band of elusive freedom fighters, the Emperor turns to his most formidable agents: Darth Vader, the fearsome new Sith enforcer as remorseless as he is mysterious; and Tarkin—whose tactical cunning and cold-blooded efficiency will pave the way for the Empire’s supremacy . . . and its enemies’ extinction. (summary from goodreads)

In case you didn’t know, I am a HUGE Star Wars fan.

Evidence:
star wars bookshelf

That’s most of my Star Wars books. I haven’t liked every experiment the Expanded Universe has undergone, but books about classic villains? Yes please. I’ve always been intrigued by Grand Moff Tarkin, and so I’m super excited that he’s getting his own book. Fingers crossed that this returns the EU to a good place, like Luceno’s STAR WARS: DARTH PLAGUEIS did for me.

On a related tangent, I’ve been thinking of doing super short videos, on my favorite characters in books. Instagram length videos, so 15 seconds. Usually I don’t like to watch videos, but 15 seconds isn’t too bad. Any opinions? Cool idea, or silly?

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.

– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: Unteachable by Leah Raeder

waiting on wednesday

unteachable by leah raederUnteachable by Leah Raeder
Release Date: October 14, 2014

Maise O’Malley just turned eighteen, but she’s felt like a grown-up her entire life. The summer before senior year, she has plans: get into a great film school, convince her mom to go into rehab, and absolutely do not, under any circumstances, screw up her own future.

But life has a way of throwing her plans into free-fall.

When Maise meets Evan at a carnival one night, their chemistry is immediate, intense, and short-lived. Which is exactly how she likes it: no strings. But afterward, she can’t get Evan out of her head. He’s taught her that a hookup can be something more. It can be an unexpected connection with someone who truly understands her. Someone who sees beyond her bravado to the scared but strong girl inside.

That someone turns out to be her new film class teacher, Mr. Evan Wilke.

Maise and Evan resolve to keep their hands off each other, but the attraction is too much to bear. Together, they’re real and genuine; apart, they’re just actors playing their parts for everyone else. And their masks are slipping. People start to notice. Rumors fly. When the truth comes to light in a shocking way, they may learn they were just playing parts for each other, too.

Smart, sexy, and provocative, Unteachable is about what happens when a love story goes off-script. (summary from goodreads)

You might ask why I’m featuring UNTEACHABLE if I’ve already read and reviewed it. Answer: I love Leah and her book, and Atria picked it up and is releasing UNTEACHABLE! If you like teacher/student romance and some sexy NA, this is the book for you. I can’t wait to have a paperback of this baby on my shelf.

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– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: Fairest by Marissa Meyer

waiting on wednesday

fairest by marissa meyerFAIREST (The Lunar Chronicles #3.5) by Marissa Meyer
Release date: January 27, 2015

In this stunning bridge book between Cress and Winter in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles, Queen Levana’s story is finally told.

Mirror, mirror on the wall,
Who is the fairest of them all?

Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her “glamour” to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress, Levana lived a very different story – a story that has never been told . . . until now.

Marissa Meyer spins yet another unforgettable tale about love and war, deceit and death. This extraordinary book includes full-color art and an excerpt from Winter, the next book in the Lunar Chronicles series. (summary from goodreads)

So I might have actually squeed when I saw the announcement for FAIREST. The Lunar Chronicles is one of my favorite series I’ve discovered while blogging, and while I haven’t read CRESS yet — I couldn’t deal with another long wait in between books! — I know I will love it, and the rest of the series. And I’m sure I’ll love just about anything Marissa Meyer writes.

Why FAIREST? Queen Levana is one of my favorite characters in the series. So to find out she would have her own book, hundreds of pages just about her, YES YES YES!!! Evil characters are usually the ones I like the most, but they get the least amount of attention. And Queen Levana? I’m sure there’s a great story there.

Give me this book now, please. If anyone I know gets an ARC, I might hunt you down. :)

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Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.

– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: The Wizard’s Promise by Cassandra Rose Clarke

the wizard's promise by cassandra rose clarkeThe Wizard’s Promise (The Hannah Duology #1) by Cassandra Rose Clarke
Release Date: May 6, 2014

All Hanna Euli wants is to become a proper witch – but unfortunately, she’s stuck as an apprentice to a grumpy fisherman. When their boat gets caught up in a mysterious storm and blown wildly off course, Hanna finds herself further away from home than she’s ever been before.

As she tries to get back, she learns there may be more to her apprentice master than she realized, especially when a mysterious, beautiful, and very non-human boy begins following her through the ocean, claiming that he needs Hanna’s help. (summary from goodreads)

Continuing my love of Strange Chemistry and my adoration of Cassandra Rose Clarke’s writing, this week I’m waiting on THE WIZARD’S PROMISE. In the author’s first series, The Assassin’s Curse (THE ASSASSIN’S CURSE, THE PIRATE’S WISH), I liked her worldbuilding, strong characters, and quirky stories. The summary for her new book tells me I’m going to get a lot more of everything I enjoyed in her previous books.

Plus, that cover! Can I have some antlers like the scarecrow-ish dude? I would rock a pair of antlers.

Okay, aside from the antlers, I just love how this cover is so different from a lot of what you see in YA books.

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– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen

stolen songbird by danielle l. jensenStolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen
Release Date: April 1, 2014

For five centuries, a witch’s curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the ruins of Forsaken Mountain. Time enough for their dark and nefarious magic to fade from human memory and into myth. But a prophesy has been spoken of a union with the power to set the trolls free, and when Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain, she learns there is far more to the myth of the trolls than she could have imagined.

Cécile has only one thing on her mind after she is brought to Trollus: escape. Only the trolls are clever, fast, and inhumanly strong. She will have to bide her time, wait for the perfect opportunity.

But something unexpected happens while she’s waiting – she begins to fall for the enigmatic troll prince to whom she has been bonded and married. She begins to make friends. And she begins to see that she may be the only hope for the half-bloods – part troll, part human creatures who are slaves to the full-blooded trolls. There is a rebellion brewing. And her prince, Tristan, the future king, is its secret leader.

As Cécile becomes involved in the intricate political games of Trollus, she becomes more than a farmer’s daughter. She becomes a princess, the hope of a people, and a witch with magic powerful enough to change Trollus forever. (summary from goodreads)

Okay, I’m cheating a bit here as I’ve already read STOLEN SONGBIRD, but I LOVED the book. So I want to see more people excited about it! It’s such a great fantasy book, one that’s on my list for my 2014 favorites. IT HAS TROLLS. Sorry. I have a thing for trolls.

troll

A big, big thing. So Tristan and all the other trolls in STOLEN SONGBIRD had parts of my heart, even the bad trolls.

I want to post my review now, but I’m holding off until closer to the book’s release date.

I am hoping to do an interview with the author, so if anyone has questions… please leave them in the comments!

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– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: The Deep End of the Sea by Heather Lyons

the deep end of the seaThe Deep End of the Sea
Release Date: February 13, 2014

What if all the legends you’ve learned were wrong?

Brutally attacked by one god and unfairly cursed by another she faithfully served, Medusa has spent the last two thousand years living out her punishment on an enchanted isle in the Aegean Sea. A far cry from the monster legends depict, she’s spent her time educating herself, gardening, and desperately trying to frighten away adventure seekers who occasionally end up, much to her dismay, as statues when they manage to catch her off guard. As time marches on without her, Medusa wishes for nothing more than to be given a second chance at a life stolen away at far too young an age.

But then comes a day when Hermes, one of the few friends she still has and the only deity she trusts, petitions the rest of the gods and goddesses to reverse the curse. Thus begins a journey toward healing and redemption, of reclaiming a life after tragedy, and of just how powerful friendship and love can be—because sometimes, you have to sink in the deep end of the sea before you can rise back up again. (summary from goodreads)

Amazing cover? Check. Awesome sounding story? Check.

I have some serious cover lust for THE DEEP END OF THE SEA. But aside from that, I’m intrigued by the story. I’m always interested in books inspired by Greek mythology, and I think Medusa is rather underrepresented.

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Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.

– leeanna

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Things On My Reading Wishlist

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is an awesome topic: the Top Ten Things On My Reading Wishlist. I spend a lot of time thinking about what I’d like to see in book form, so I had to jump in and participate.

01: Historical YA for unpopular time periods:

Some time periods, such as Tudor England, are really popular, and dare I say, almost overrepresented, in both adult and YA fiction. One of my degrees is in history, so it’s safe to say I like it a lot, and I like using historical fiction as a way to gauge my interest in different time periods. I’d like to see Argentina under the Peróns, England in the Dark Ages, France before the Sun King, Ancient Egypt in the time of Hatshepshut, etc.

02: Alternate history:

This kind of goes along with my first wish, but I love me some alternate history. Examples: What would have happened if Cleopatra lived? What would have happened if Katharine of Aragon bore Henry VIII a son?

03: A wider range for New Adult:

I like the idea of New Adult as a genre, and I do think it’s important. I just wish more authors tried branching into paranormal, fantasy, historical, etc., rather than just sticking with contemporary.

04: More standalones/duologies:

I understand the appeal of a trilogy, but … not every series is meant to be a trilogy. Some books should really just be one book, not the beginning of a trilogy.

05: Celebrate the geeks!

I want to see more books where girls love coding, programming, science, math, whatever. Trekkies, Whovians, whatever. Let that geek flag fly — don’t make geekiness something that needs to be fixed.

06: Adventures on other planets:

I haven’t read a lot of YA set in space, so maybe I’ve missed this, but I really would love something along the lines of John Varley’s Eight Worlds.

07: Different mythical/supernatural creatures:

Where are the selkies, unicorns, banshees, centaurs, etc?

08: Real dystopian books:

I want the nitty and gritty and dirty details of dystopian life, not a thin veneer so the romance takes center stage.

09: Ballet:

SO many “ballet” books aren’t ballet books at all! I’m lookin’ at you, THE BROKENHEARTED. I loved, loved BUNHEADS by Sophie Flack, and I’d adore more books in that vein.

10: Lesbians in YA:

Slowly, more LGBT is trickling into YA, but it’s the guys who are getting represented. That’s great, but I want to see girls crushing on girls and more, in a variety of genres, and without coming out angst.

*Two of my favorite indie authors, Jenn and Sarah Diemer, have set out to change this, but I’m greedy and want more.

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

– leeanna

Waiting on Wednesday: The Almost Girl by Amalie Howard

the almost girl by amalie howardThe Almost Girl by Amalie Howard
Release Date: January 7, 2014

Seventeen-year-old Riven is as tough as they come. Coming from a world ravaged by a devastating android war, she has to be. There’s no room for softness, no room for emotion, no room for mistakes. A Legion General, she is the right hand of the young Prince of Neospes, a parallel universe to Earth. In Neospes, she has everything: rank, responsibility and respect. But when Prince Cale sends her away to find his long-lost brother, Caden, who has been spirited back to modern day Earth, Riven finds herself in uncharted territory.

Thrown out of her comfort zone but with the mindset of a soldier, Riven has to learn how to be a girl in a realm that is the opposite of what she knows. Riven isn’t prepared for the beauty of a world that is unlike her own in so many ways. Nor is she prepared to feel something more than indifference for the very target she seeks. Caden is nothing like Cale, but he makes something in her come alive, igniting a spark deep down that goes against every cell in her body. For the first time in her life, Riven isn’t sure about her purpose, about her calling. Torn between duty and desire, she must decide whether Caden is simply a target or whether he is something more.

Faced with hideous reanimated Vector soldiers from her own world with agendas of their own, as well as an unexpected reunion with a sister who despises her, it is a race against time to bring Caden back to Neospes. But things aren’t always as they seem, and Riven will have to search for truth. Family betrayals and royal coups are only the tip of the iceberg. Will Riven be able to find the strength to defy her very nature? Or will she become the monstrous soldier she was designed to be? (summary from goodreads)

Okay, ya’ll. How can I not want to read THE ALMOST GIRL Right. This. Very. Minute?? First, the cover is grabbing at my geeky side AND it’s pretty. I really like the shades of blue against the white. And if I could … I’d get a half mohawk and weld Google Glasses to my face. I WOULD.

Second, Riven sounds like she is going to kick some butt, take lots of names, and just be all around awesome. RAWR!

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Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.

– leeanna