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Waiting on Wednesday

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 This week, on our Waiting on Wednesday meme, we are featuring a sequel to one of the stunning epic fantasy debuts of this year, back in Jan that focused on  Norse-inspired mythology, stunning world building and frenetic action. Hall of Smoke by H M Long was an early favorite novel of mine, this year.  In Jan'2022  Temple of No God (Hall of Smoke # 2) releases. And it promises the same vein of feverish excitement, action and world building, with some of our favorite troubled characters coming back.    After a brutal war between the gods, Hessa – High Priestess of the Eangen – has brokered a fragile peace. Through great sacrifice, she has forged an alliance between warring tribes and introduced her people to the true god.   But a new threat is growing across the southern border. In the remnants of the once-great Arpa Empire, three factions are vying for the imperial throne, and the vast well of raw magical power only accessible to the Arpa Emperor. Already beating back former Ar

The Pariah by Anthony Ryan

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Anthony Ryan 's books have been a bit of a hit and miss, with me. I wrapped up his first trilogy - after having been really impressed by The Blood Song , the rest of the books in that trilogy was a bitter pill to swallow, a disappointment. And then I kept away from his Draconis Memoria books. His Raven's Blade duology seemed interesting but I haven't gotten around to read them as yet. And this year, Anthony has released a brand new series with this opener - The Pariah , book one in the Covenant of Steel series that traces the dramatic rise and fall of Alwyn Scribe, outlaw, scribe, soldier, legend.  This book is a marked departure, in terms of Ryan's style and writing as well, which was a welcome change for me. Written in a sublime prose, that never grows tiresome, the worldbuilding of The Pariah is subtle, effective and organically grows on you as you read. It's in fact, so well done that I didn't realize that Ryan has built up an entirely new world, which de

Rock, Paper, Scissors by Alice Feeney

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 I have recently concluded that the best kind of audio-books are mysteries or thrillers. And psychological thrillers are definitely up there at the top. And so I stumbled onto Alice Feeney , hailed as the queen of the domestic twisty psychological thrillers ( "His & Hers" ) and her latest, Rock Paper Scissors is again a domestic puzzle-box of a story with unreliable narrators, harrowing shocking twists and fabulous storytelling that goes deep beneath the layers presented.  The story is about Mr and Mrs. Wright - Adam and Amelia, who have won a weekend getaway to the Scottish highlands, a stay at this romantic secluded church, known as the Black Loch Chapel. This is a last-ditch attempt by both of them to save their marriage, which is on the rocks. But once they get to this isolated church, they realize that the secluded chapel may not be the most romantic place on earth. While the views themselves are to kill for, the place is creepy, almost haunted, gothic. With a histo

Waiting on Wednesday

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 Featuring our recurring meme to bring out some of the most anticipated releases in the SFF genre, today we are featuring Daniel Abraham's new epic fantasy series, called The Kithamar Trilogy with the first book in the series named Age of Ash. So Daniel Abraham is of course the famous 'half' of the writing duo that gave us the critically acclaimed The Expanse science-fiction series and before, has the fantastic Dagger and Coin series ( which, I have yet to finish, sigh guilty!) But I cannot wait to jump onto this new one ( Seems like a long wait though!)  Kithamar is a center  of  trade and wealth, an ancient city with a long, bloody history where countless thousands live and their stories unfold. This is Alys’s. Alys is simply a petty thief from the slums  of  Longhill, but when her brother is murdered, she sets out to discover who killed him and why. But the more she discovers about him, the more she learns about herself, and the truths she finds are more dangerous than k

Rabbits by Terry Miles

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 If you have been obsessed with games, counter-culture, mysteries and in general, a good twisty read that fucks with your mind, then you will dig this one, Rabbits by Terry Miles . Based off on a long running podcasts about an allegedly secret game based on alternate reality, Rabbits is a thriller that is full of so many interesting forgotten culture/ game references that by the time you get to the bottom of the mystery, you are so mind-fucked that you don't even care.  Set in Seattle, the main protagonist is K, who is obsessed with games and mysteries all his life. He's the kind who frequents dark web forums, hangs out at old gaming arcades and loves dispensing tidbits about mysterious ARG's that the underworld gaming fanatics have only heard about and are drawn to. A self-professed expert on this game called Rabbits, that is one of the most secretive alternate reality games out there, K gets pulled deeper into this game, when a reclusive billionaire named Alan Shapiro see

Waiting on Wednesday

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The Grey Bastards by Jonathan French, the series Lot Lands has been on my radar for a long time now - and I think with the stunning conclusion for the whole series coming through in September with the new book, The Free Bastards , I want jump onto that hog-saddle (wink! Raised on the Saddle, Born to be Free, is the by-line for the new book) - Eagerly waiting to get down and dirty with these half-orcs and the looming war ahead!  The long-awaited war has come in the conclusion to the Lot Lands trilogy. War has come to the Lot Lands—and Oats stands upon the frontline. The Hisparthan armies on the horizon are mighty, bolstered by divine champions, dread sorcerers, and gunpowder. It’s almost more than the half-orc rebellion can hope to repel. But Oats has won impossible fights before. He’s a thriceblood, after all, more orc than man. And he hasn’t forgotten how to kill. He’ll stack the bodies high for his chief and his brethren, if that’s the price of freeing the Lots from human tyranny.

The Priest of Bones by Peter McLean

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 The Priest of Bones by Peter McLean is a grim-dark low-fantasy opener to a series, that came out a few years back. Having read his first series, The Burned Man trilogy - which was excellent stuff - I had no qualms in jumping onto this bandwagon. And within minutes I was swept away by the grim fortunes of One Mr. Tomas Piety and his men, soldiers returning back from an ill-fated war to their home-town of Ellinburg, to an even more lopsided state of affairs with usurping foreigners, political machinations and poverty and diseases at large in his home-town.  The setting is that of the town of Ellinburg, a down and out town with its motley collection of barhouses, whorehouses and gambling circles. A place gone to rot, with the so-called 'nobles' interested only in their own parties fueled by substance-abuse. The corrupt Governor with his men of law, are only interested in who is paying them higher taxes. Divided and ruled by different gang-lands, the most prominent are of cours