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.
This covers the last two weeks since only one book came in the mail during the first of those weeks. Before the latest books, here are the posts that have gone up since the last one of these features in case you missed any of them:
- Review of the February Patreon book, A Thousand Nights by E. K. Johnston (it is fantastic)
- Review of Dreams of Distant Shores by Patricia A. McKillip (“The Gorgon in the Cupboard” is an especially wonderful story)
- Review of Miranda and Caliban by Jacqueline Carey (a beautifully written novel inspired by Shakespeare’s The Tempest)
- Announcement of the March Patreon book, a high fantasy
The Black Witch (The Black Witch Chronicles #1) by Laurie Forest
Laurie Forest’s young adult fantasy debut novel will be released on May 2 (hardcover, ebook, audiobook). Entertainment Weekly has an excerpt from The Black Witch.
A Great Winged One will soon arise and cast his fearsome shadow upon the land. And just as Night slays Day, and Day slays Night, so also shall another Black Witch rise to meet him, her powers vast beyond imagining.
So foretells the greatest prophecy of the Gardnerian mages. Carnissa Gardner, the last prophesied Black Witch, drove back the enemy forces and saved her people during the Realm War. Now a new evil is on the horizon, and her granddaughter, Elloren, is believed to be Carnissa’s heir—but while she is the absolute image of her famous grandmother, Elloren is utterly devoid of power in a society that prizes magical ability above nearly all else.
When she is granted the opportunity to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming an apothecary, Elloren is eager to join her brothers at the prestigious Verpax University and finally embrace a destiny of her own, free from the shadow of her grandmother’s legacy. But she soon realizes that the University, which admits all manner of peoples—including the fire-wielding, winged Icarals, the sworn enemies of her people—is an even more treacherous place for the granddaughter of the Black Witch.
Spymaster (The Dragon Corsairs #1) by Margaret Weis and Robert Krammes
This fantasy novel will be released on March 21 (hardcover, ebook). Tor.com has an excerpt from Spymaster.
A bold new swashbuckling fantasy adventure set in the land of the exciting Dragon Brigade trilogy.
Politics, court intrigue, and piracy combine in this gripping fantasy adventure. On a world already riven by the ancient hatred between the Rosian and Freyan empires, privateers of each nation have long preyed on the ships of the other. What few realize is that a sinister cabal controlled by a rogue dragon is not only behind this piracy, but is organizing criminal enterprises all over the world.
As one privateer and her dragon corsairs try to keep their enterprise afloat, they are caught up in a conspiracy hatched by the cabal . . . and threatened by a mysterious magic crafter who works in the shadows.
Freya, in turmoil because of the accidental death of the heir to the throne, is also deeply in debt. Sir Henry Wallace, their master spy, is charged with replenishing the treasury by inviting dragons from Travia to make Freya their home—a decision that will have disastrous consequences for everyone involved.
In a riveting novel of pulse-pounding suspense, the ruthless conspiracy of humans and dragons plots against Sir Henry and the Dragon Corsairs.. And waiting in the wings, planning to throw everything in turmoil, is a young man known as Prince Tom, who claims to be Freya’s true and rightful king.
Mythomorphia: An Extreme Coloring and Search Challenge by Kerby Rosanes
This adult coloring book will be available on April 11. Although I tend to cover fiction here, I couldn’t resist featuring this one after flipping through it—it has some rather compelling artwork!
Fans of adult coloring books will love the intricate, imaginative illustrations of Kerby Rosanes, the artist behind the Sketchy Stories blog.
The fantastically detailed style fans have come to know and love through his previous New York Times bestselling coloring books—Animorphia and Imagimorphia—is back, and just as awesomely-complex as before. Dragons, unicorns, griffins and other mythical creatures morph and explode into astounding detail. Bring each imagination-bending image to life with color and find the objects hidden throughout the book.