Posted in Romance, Science Fiction Book Reviews

Book Review: The Colonists Wife

Colonists Wife

Hello friends,

The Colonist’s Wife by Kylie Scott is a science fiction romance. There’s miners, danger, explosions, and even horticulture within this book. There’s plenty of things to go around, in terms of enjoying a good science fiction romp towards an alien planet named Esther (I believe), and in colonization. Mail order brides set in space is always an interesting trope that I like reading, and I found Adam and Louise both likable characters, despite each of them having their own flaws.

The romance was easily one of my favorites as well, and this scifi romance novel soared to the top of my favorites list. I’ve barely read anything by Kylie Scott, but this author has made me sit up and take notice. Sadly, the author doesn’t appear to have a lot in terms of scifi romance just yet, but I hope that will soon change.

This story was well written, fast paced, and with plenty of romance. The setting was intriguing, and I found the characters flaws to be realistic as well as carefully handled. I liked how each character was fleshed out in the story. Louise’s tragic backstory was one I’d read, but in a different set up than what I was familiar with. I liked the side characters, as well as the overall plot. And the flow of the story was smooth, causing me to finish the book in one sitting.

4/5 stars for a new to me author, one that I’m sure that I’ll be enjoying a lot more in the future. I’ll keep a look out for this author, and their other works, as well as recommend them to those on my friends list who adores scifi romance as much as I do. This is a good, standalone scifi romance that I’m sure all of you will thoroughly enjoy.

Until next time,
Pass Me That Book

Posted in Science Fiction Book Reviews

Arc Review: Salvation Day

Salvation Day

Title: Salvation Day
Author: Kali Wallace
Series: ?
Genre: Science Fiction, Adult Fiction
Page Count: 300
Publisher: Berkeley
Type of Book: Arc, Physical Hardback
Received: Publisher
Review Word Count:
Rated: 5/5
Notes: Highly recommended for fans of The Expanse, Illuminae, and Binti.

This was an awesome, adventurous ride from the very beginning, building into a mystery that you didn’t know where it would end up at, though you kept hoping you would know the answer. The writing is strong, the characters are full of depth and each have their own unique backstories, and everyone’s agenda is complicated…you’ll fall for this world just as easily as I have, especially if you enjoy watching the show The Expanse.

I should warn readers not to get attached to characters. This author must have taken liberties from George RR Martin with how often he talked about death, dying, killing characters, and so on.

The story here was just so well done. The build up suspense was well executed, the hostage scenario at the beginning was tightly woven and you just were eager to see where everything landed at the end of the book.

I sincerely, sincerely hope there’s a sequel. Or more to come from one of my new favorite authors.

5/5 stars for a beautifully written space adventure romp with ghost ships, hostages, mysterious viruses, and loads of character deaths you didn’t see coming. My thanks also to the publisher for sending me a copy, I’ll be putting this with my Expanse collection at once.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Posted in Science Fiction Book Reviews

Anthology Review: The Eagle Has Landed

The Eagle Has Landed

Title: The Eagle Has Landed
Author: Anthology/Neil Clarke
Series: Standalone
Genre: Science Fiction
Publisher: Skyhorse
Page Count: 600
Type of Book: Kindle Ebook, Arc
Received: Netgalley
Review Word Count: 1000
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: Definite recommendation for SciFi nerds!

This was a fascinating anthology about the moon landings, or people living on the moon and I jumped at the chance to read and review this book. I’ve been reading a lot of short fiction lately, from anthology collections to Tor’s Free Short Story Archive, to random other tidbits I’ve found here and there. My goal is to read one short story a day, perhaps more depending on what mood I’m in, or how impactful the story was and how much it lingers with me. And now that I’ve finished it, rating the stories on my goodreads review, I can say that this was a very well done anthology with several 4 star and 5 star short stories within, including two favorites which I really loved.

My overall two favorite stories were “A Walk in the Sun” by Geoffrey A. Landis and “How We Lost the Moon” by Paul J. MacAuley. Both were excellent, and there were several others that were high on my list of favorites as well. Neil Clarke definitely knows how to put together an anthology of great fiction, and I’m more interested than ever in seeing what other books he’s put together.

This took me two weeks to finish, rather a week and a half but put me in a little slump when I was done. I liked each story that was in here; there was nothing that I outright hated, which was unusual for an anthology for me, as there have been times where a few stories I simply could not stand-this was not the case here. Definitely made for science fiction, with little else in this book, I highly recommend it for scifi nerds like myself who love survival stories, as well as exploratory tales, and races against time.

My overall rating is 4.5 out of 5 stars, though I’ve settled on a 4/5 stars instead of rounding up, due to the slump it put me in as well as the few stories that simply weren’t to my taste. I feel that this will make a great read for those who are studying astronomy, or the moon, or the history of astronauts.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

Posted in Romance, Science Fiction Book Reviews

Paperback Book Review: Stardoc

Stardoc

Title: Stardoc
Author: S. L. Viehl
Series: Book 1
Genre: Science Fiction, Adult Fiction
Publisher: Roc Fantasy
Page Count: 400
Type of Book: Paperback
Received: Library Loan
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars
Notes: Trigger warnings for rape between alien/human species, harsh language, various illnesses, illegal cloning, and light suggested emotional abuse towards a child*

Discovered through Goodreads, not a bad find on the recommendations page. I just wish that I’d known it was the start to a series. I’ve got so many series started already that I wasn’t looking to be invested in another one, but I definitely am now. This one was a strangely delightful read, a feel good scifi romp with plenty of action, though with plenty of heavy hitting topics as well…from finding the love of your life to a dangerous contagion that might wipe out an entire planet’s worth of different species all in one go. The adventure was non-stop, and there was plenty of unusual aliens with their own histories and stories to make one really feel as if they were really a part of the story and not just reading it.

*light suggested emotional abuse towards a child is in reference towards the main character’s father being an absolute ass. He genetically engineered, aka cloned, his daughter and never told her. She found out through an anonymous tip that her entire life has not only been a lie but orchestrated by her father. It’s the primary reason for her packing up her belongings, including a cat named Jenner, and high-tailing it to another world that’s considered on the edge of the frontier with poor medical treatment centers, giving her the perfect excuse to being there, for she’s a highly trained medical doctor.

Nevermind the fact that she’s never operated on alien beings, she’d determined to learn and experience as much as she can while she’s there. It’s an entertaining read as she discovers that it’s a lot more to take in than what she originally realized, and her living area is much smaller than what she’s accustomed to as well. With plenty of aliens around, she also has to learn new languages and cultures, as well as figuring out the lay of the land with its laws and customs.

There’s plenty to discover and like within this book, from the characters point of view, to the aliens, to the in-depth descriptions of how to treat an alien woman giving birth to vicious babies that will eat you as soon as your born. There’s lots of action, adventure, and even romance in this book but there’s hefty topics to deal with too.

Overall, I’m giving this a 5/5 stars for a wonderful read, and definitely look forward to reading more of the series to figure out how she finds freedom and free will against that of her egotistical ass of a father.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Posted in Romance, Science Fiction Book Reviews

New Release Review: Arabella and the Traitor of Mars

Arabella and the Traitor of Mars

Title: Arabella and the Traitor of Mars
Author: David Levine
Series: Book 3
Genre: Science Fiction, Adult Fiction
Publisher: Tom Doherty/Tor
Page Count: 400
Type of Book: Hardback, New Release
Received: Library Loan
Rated: 5/5 stars
Review Word Count: 500
Notes: Read for the OWLs prompt “Transfiguration-Sprayed Edges or Red Cover” and since I don’t have any sprayed edges on my books, I went with the red cover. I had so many more options there, but finally settled on a favorite series.

This was a delightful read, just as much as the first two books in the series were. While I love Arabella and her adventures, I felt as though this might be the end of the series what with that happy ending that the author had. If that’s so, then that makes me sad for I’m most definitely not ready for the trilogy/series to end!

This third book of Arabella promises a war of sorts to occur between the Prince of England and Mars. There’s spies, aliens, subterfuge, disagreements of epic proportions, true lovers quarrels that are happily resolved by the end of the book, sarcastic wit, and heroism scattered throughout the book. It’s as much as you would expect from a political yet adventurous set of battles both in space and on two different planets.

Lady Corey is also a favorite, as is Fox, Captain Singh, and many others. All played their parts in the story, and many had larger roles than before. Captain Singh had an enormous role to the point that it made the story vastly more interesting, though I disapproved of his first choice towards the question the Prince posed him he did make the right call in the end after all and his love for Arabella triumphed.

I feel that there can be more information on the Martians, for example, explained in book four. And that Arabella could truly begin learning the depths of the Martians and what all they could truly be capable of. While we caught some hints of that in this book, it was more focused on stopping a war between planets than it was on the Martians history and people.

Yet despite the amount of politics riddled within the pages of this fast-paced adventure story set in space, the story itself never dragged, the characters proved as true in this book as they’d been in the first two, and I remain an ever present fan of this series. 5/5 stars for a splendid read, and the sad news that I have finished a trilogy of great fun and realistic characters that lead adventurous lives.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Posted in Fantasy Book Reviews, Historical Fiction Book Reviews, LGBT Book Reviews, Romance, Science Fiction Book Reviews

New Release Review: Once and Future

Once and Future

Title: Once and Future
Author: Amy Rose Capetta + Cori McCarthy
Series: Book 1
Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction
Publisher: Hatchett
Page Count: 400
Type of Book: Hardback, New Release
Received: Library
Rated: 5/5 stars
Review Word Count: 500
Notes: Read for the “Ancient Runes” category of my O.W.L. Exams/Read-a-Thon, for in Ancient Runes you were meant to read a ‘retelling’.

Slow to start, this built up to a cliffhanger that made me scream as I saw at the end of the book a page that read “The Sword in the Stars Coming 2020”. Noooo. I didn’t want to start another series. And did this list it as a series on Goodreads? Nope. Did it list it at the beginning of the book? Nope. Grr. But I’m heavily invested now, because oh the characters!

The storyline is definitely different from the original, and it’s not just because Arthur got turned into a girl for this plot. There was a f/f romance that I didn’t see coming-two of them. There was a back romance plot of an m/m romance that I also didn’t see coming. There were knights in shining armor, even while in space. There were dragons. There were miracles and heartache and flirting and lots of musical references. Everything from Queen to Katy Perry musical references that made me appreciate the book even more.

At points, it felt like this story dragged in the middle, but then it picked up again with a startling speed that I flipped through to the end faster than anticipated and read the book in one sitting, it was that good. I was invested in the characters, their romances, the betrayals, the deaths, the bad guys and if they were going to be defeated or not. There was so much going on, but it wasn’t a hard book to read and the authors took care not to pander or info-dump the readers with a whole lot of back story which I appreciated. There were brief bits where they explained certain things, but it went well with the story. Even if I already knew the story of Arthur and Merlin, it being one of my favorite classics to read retellings of more so than, say Beauty and the Beast.

This was a breathtaking and beautiful retelling, with its own original twists and storyline that felt fresh and new. With plenty of positive LGBT representation, this book was a lovely read and one that I didn’t expect to be in my top ten favorites list for 2019 this early in the year. There have been several others of those already, and this year is shaping up to be a great year with loads of amazing books, with this being one of them.

I’m definitely going to get the second book to the series. Because that cliffhanger was evil and unexpected and just plainly left me wanting more. My hat is off to the authors for a spectacular job well done on a new version of the tale, and I eagerly anticipate the sequel. 5/5 glorious stars.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Posted in LGBT Book Reviews, Romance, Science Fiction Book Reviews, Uncategorized

Netgalley Review: Conviction

Conviction

Title: Conviction
Author: M. D. Neu
Series: Book Two
Genre: Science Fiction, Romance, LGBT, Futuristic
Page Count: ?
Publisher: Nine Star Press
Release Date: March 15th
Type of Book: Ebook, Kindle Book, ARC
Review Word Count: 1000
Received: Netgalley
Rated: 5/5 stars
Notes: This series continues to delight. It went a different area than what I expected, though still pulled through with a happy ending with plenty of things to resolve in the next book.

Following the continuation of Book One “Contact” which I read last year, and really enjoyed, I was delighted to find myself approved for this book within hours of requesting it. Therefore, my thanks to the publisher Nine Star Press, and I am pleased to have read and am reviewing almost immediately within receiving it. (If only all my requests worked out this way!)

Todd Landon is recovering from the attack that took his husband, and many of the Nantreaa that had arrived at Earth last year when they had first visited San Jose. He’s still grieving the loss, but he’s determined to help these visitors of another world settle in without too many hiccups along the way. Yet others are bound and determined to prevent them staying, fear, bigotry, and outright hatred making it difficult for him to do his job as well as he can.

Then there’s Mi’cen and his family. With the political aspects of this book proving to be challenging, as well as interesting in reading, Todd’s attempt at getting to know and understand Mi’cen’s family is fascinating to read and see through his eyes. I loved Todd’s interaction with Faa, a small creature that can speak, and I also liked how everyone was their own person and unique to the story. Each character breathed life to the pages that otherwise would have seemed to be dull and overly political when dealing with an alien ‘invasion’, though really the Nantreaa are more political refugees than anything, as they are trying to find a safe place to stay after their planet was destroyed, their sun having gone supernova.

The whole situation is a bit impressive build-up, and I found myself devouring each page. I really like the author’s writing style, and he explains things reasonably well without pandering or info-dumping the reader. My one complaint was the religious aspects of the book. Granted, it wasn’t bad, and more debatable between aliens and humans which is understandable, but attempting to sway aliens over to a god that they know nothing about? No. Sorry, but I don’t think that would actually fly. Not to mention “God is mysterious, his ways of hurting people always has a reason”-I never liked nor believed that was a good line to tell worshippers. You need to have a better reason than that to make innocent people suffer. Sorry, but that’s just my opinion.

Though since the religion aspect did actually matter and come to play a part in the story-surprising me completely, actually-I actually didn’t mind it overmuch. I found it was actually helpful in the plot as well, because of course when introducing aliens to a human world, they’re going to touch base on religion at some point or another, and it seemed that much more realistic than anything else.

But I digress.

The plot was excellent. The world-building was cool, and the aliens were unique and fascinating. I would have liked to have learned more about their technology, animals, and history, but it focused more on the characters than the actual history of the Nantreaa this time around. I’m hoping that those things will be more explored in book three, or perhaps four if this is a series and not a trilogy.

Overall, I’m definitely giving this a 5/5 stars, because this was a delicious LGBT science fiction with politics, humor, some pretty hefty action towards the end, and a HEA but with enough unresolved issues that it still leaves things wide open for at least two more books. I highly recommend reading these if you like realistic characters, believable science fiction, and a fast paced plot. Book three cannot come fast enough!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

Posted in Science Fiction Book Reviews

New Release Review: The Black God’s Drums

The Black God's Drums

Title: The Black God’s Drums
Author: P. Djeli Clark
Genre: Science Fiction, Adult
Series: Hopefully a Book 1
Publisher: Tor.com
Page Count: 108
Type of Book: New Release, Paperback
Received: Library
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars
Notes: So short, but oh so good! (Also that mention of Fillory at the acknowledgments at the end of the book!)

The Black God’s Drums swept me away for a solid half hour. I could have finished this book quicker, yet I lingered. It was short, but there was so much packed into it, that I find it’s hard to review such a beautifully well written read. I loved Creeper, and the Captain, and Feral was easily quipped my interest as to her backstory. The rich history and magic flared brightly through each page, and I tip my hat off to the author for one of my now top favorite reads of 2019.

Creeper, a scrappy young teen, is done living on the streets of New Orleans. Instead, she wants to soar, and her sights are set on securing passage aboard the smuggler airship Midnight Robber. Her ticket: earning Captain Ann-Marie’s trust using a secret about a kidnapped Haitian scientist and a mysterious weapon he calls The Black God’s Drums.

But Creeper keeps another secret close to heart–Oya, the African orisha of the wind and storms, who speaks inside her head and grants her divine powers. And Oya has her own priorities concerning Creeper and Ann-Marie…

~As seen on Goodreads

I am hopeful to check out other authors works as they are published. This is well deserved of the hype, and I highly recommend you read this if you read nothing else for the rest of the year. It’s an impressive piece of fiction, and the first piece that I’ve read from this author. It brings to mind short novellas like Binti by Nnedi Orkorfar, and Murdberbot by Martha Wells, it’s that good. Novellas are definitely making a come-up, I think.

Overall, 5/5 stars for a gorgeous piece of fiction that I’m re-reading as soon as I finish posting this review.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Posted in Romance, Science Fiction Book Reviews, Uncategorized

New Release Review: Arabella and the Battle of Venus

Arabella and the Battle of Venus

Title: Arabella and the Battle of Venus
Author: David Levine
Series: Book Two
Genre: Science Fiction, Adult Fiction
Publisher: Tor Books
Page Count: 415
Type of Book: Hardback, New Release
Received: Library
Review Word Count: 600
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: Ah, Arabella continues to delight! This was a perfect read to read after the heartbreaking trauma of “All the Wandering Light by Heather Fawcett”!

Arabella returns in this dazzling sequel where instead of Mars being the main planet she’s on, it’s Venus. New characters are introduced, as well as old. Her fiance remains true, except he’s been captured and labeled a prisoner of war along with his remaining crew. It’s up to Arabella to harness a new crew to go and save the day.

These books are so delightfully fun! While some of the men are incredibly sexist, and her brother is a bit racist towards her fiance, it’s still full of wit, humor, and sarcasm to delight all readers. There’s plenty of intrigue, as well, and dangerous attacks in space on the ships. A new delightful captain, Daniel Fox Captain of the Touchstone, is equally fun to read!

Brave, a gambler, handsome, and full of wit, I really wanted Arabella to marry Daniel instead of Captain Singh. I digress, however, as this isn’t just about one character that I fell for. This is about Arabella going gallantly into the unknown to face Bonaparte who has escaped and is attempting to restore his empire once more, even as she’s attempting to free her fiance. There’s banter, adventure, and danger throughout this novel, and I treasured every page.

The wait for the next book is going to be just awful. *sighs miserably* Even so, this book was an utter delight, and I give it 4.5/5 stars for an enchanting and entertaining read.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Posted in LGBT Book Reviews, Romance, Science Fiction Book Reviews, Uncategorized

Netgalley Review: Contact by M.D. Neu

contact

Title: Contact
Author: M.D. Neu
Series: Book 1
Genre: Science Fiction
Page Count: 300
Publisher: Ninestar Press
Type of Book: Arc, Kindle Ebook
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 4/5 stars
Received: Netgalley
Notes: Death of an lgbt character, but makes sense for the plot. Harsh swearing from two different characters, and a bomb attack about halfway through the book in a populated city.

This is a hard book to review. While I flew through the pages, there’s several things that I didn’t much like about the book-the harsh language, and the death of an lgbt character made it a bit darker for me to read. The harsh language was almost off-putting for me, though I skimmed through a lot of that.

There wasn’t much in the romance department, though the obvious love between the main gay couple was evident and real, and I liked it. There were some issues that I had Jerry and his attitude towards Todd, but it made the character seem more realistic as well.

There’s small handfuls throughout this book of characters bashing LGBT characters, but it improves over time. Todd’s brother started out as hateful and mean, but eventually grew out of that, into something that was a bit more bearable.

The science, aliens, and first contact approach with this book was great. I really liked the detail that the author put into the storyline; it was almost as if I was living it, though unfortunately that’s not the case. I think the coolest thing was Faa and the purple mountains comment.

I definitely look forward to reading book two. The ending was a little bit of a cliff-hanger, though without a lot of ‘must have book two now’ it was more of a, what will happen next kind of thing.

4/5 well deserved stars.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.