The Leaning Pile of Books is a feature where I talk about books I got over the last week–old or new, bought or received for review consideration (usually unsolicited). Since I hope you will find new books you’re interested in reading in these posts, I try to be as informative as possible. If I can find them, links to excerpts, author’s websites, and places where you can find more information on the book are included.

Before I get to the latest books, here’s what’s been posted since the last one of these features in case you missed it:

  • Review of the November Patreon book, Biting the Sun by Tanith Lee
    • This one was hard to review because it was a book I liked having read more than a book I liked reading, and many of the issues I had with it actually made sense artistically, fitting with the story and character. A lot of the main ideas do not seem particularly original (at least, when reading it about 40 years after it was published!) and some of it is predictable, but there’s still something about how it’s executed that makes it unique and memorable—and makes me glad I read it even if the first book in the omnibus wasn’t particularly enjoyable to read.
  • Announcement of the December Patreon book, Sign for the Sacred by Storm Constantine
    • I love Storm Constantine’s Wraeththu books so I’m excited about reading this for December’s Patreon review and am reading it now. It didn’t hook me immediately like the Wraeththu books, but I am very interested in seeing where it goes!

Now for the books!

The Nature of a Pirate by A.M. Dellamonica

The Nature of a Pirate (Hidden Sea Tales #3) by A.M. Dellamonica

The third Hidden Sea Tales novel was just released last week (hardcover, ebook). has an excerpt from The Nature of a Pirate, as well as from the first two books in the series:

Some prequel short stories are also on


Marine videographer and biologist Sophie Hansa has spent the past few months putting her knowledge of science to use on the strange world of Stormwrack, solving seemingly impossible cases where no solution had been found before.

When a series of ships within the Fleet of Nations, the main governing body that rules a loose alliance of island nation states, are sunk by magical sabotage, Sophie is called on to find out why. While surveying the damage of the most recent wreck, she discovers a strange-looking creature—a fright, a wooden oddity born from a banished spell—causing chaos within the ship. The question is who would put this creature aboard and why?

The quest for answers finds Sophie magically bound to an abolitionist from Sylvanner, her father’s homeland. Now Sophie and the crew of the Nightjar must discover what makes this man so unique while outrunning magical assassins and villainous pirates, and stopping the people responsible for the attacks on the Fleet before they strike again.

Additional Books: