First, a quick update: This whole past week I was busy every single evening after work so I didn’t make any progress on book reviews.  I’m working on a review of Passion Play by Beth Bernobich and then I have a review of Eona by Alison Goodman to write (it kept me up until 3 in the morning – I absolutely loved it).  At the moment I’m reading two science fiction books – The Fear Principle by B. A. Chepaitis and Embassytown by China Mieville.

This week I bought one of my new most anticipated books of the year (after reading the first book a couple months ago) and received 4 unexpected review copies.  Have to love it when surprise books show up!

Oh, and in case any other Kate Daniels fans are interested – I pre-ordered a signed copy of Magic Slays from Powell’s.  Ilona and Gordon Andrews will be signing copies at the store at Cedar Hills Crossing in Beaverton, Oregon, on May 31  at 7:00 PM along with Lili St. Crow (signing Defiance) and Devon Monk (signing Magic on the Hunt).  If only I lived closer so I could go to the signing… but I was thrilled for the opportunity to order one of the books.  It was a tough decision since that means I’ll have to wait a little longer for it to get here so I can read it, but I decided it was worth it to wait for a signed copy.

On the books I actually got this week!

The Hidden GoddessThe Hidden Goddess by M. K. Hobson

After reading The Native Star earlier this year as part of the Nebula Readathon, I of course had to get the sequel soon after it came out.  I debated whether or not to get it now since I have some other books I need to read and review first, but it’s one I definitely want to have on hand for when I do get a chance to read it.  If it had been out when I finished the first book, I would have read it immediately afterward.  It was one of those books I just loved that much that I wanted the next one NOW.   A recent interview with the author describing it as darker made me want to read it even more.  I was also interested to see from the interview that the next two books will most likely take place about 30 years after this one and will be about Emily’s son.

In a brilliant mix of magic, history, and romance, M. K. Hobson moves her feisty young Witch, Emily Edwards, from the Old West of 1876 to turn-of-the-nineteenth-century New York City, whose polished surfaces conceal as much danger as anything west of the Rockies.

Like it or not, Emily has fallen in love with Dreadnought Stanton, a New York Warlock as irresistible as he is insufferable. Newly engaged, she now must brave Dreadnought’s family and the magical elite of the nation’s wealthiest city. Not everyone is pleased with the impending nuptials, especially Emily’s future mother-in-law, a sociopathic socialite. But there are greater challenges still: confining couture, sinister Russian scientists, and a deathless Aztec goddess who dreams of plunging the world into apocalypse. With all they must confront, do Emily and Dreadnought have any hope of a happily-ever-after?

Promises to KeepPromises to Keep by Charles de Lint

This book will be available in paperback for the first time on May 15. It’s another Newford book about Jilly Coppercorn, and it takes place before The Onion Girl and Widdershins. I’ve only read one book by de Lint (Medicine Road) and I thought it was good, but it wasn’t really a book I personally was crazy about. This sounds very good to me, though, and I find myself wanting to read it.

With the help of a mentor and an anonymous benefactor, Jilly Coppercorn has overcome abuse, addiction, and a stint in juvie. Though she still struggles to stay clean, she has found safety and love in a newly formed family that includes her loyal best friend, a lovely artist, and her caseworker. Temptation comes knocking, however, when her best friend from the bad old days rides in on a motorcycle and takes Jilly to a beautiful, mysterious city full of wonderful opportunities. It seems perfect at first, until Jilly discovers that it was a one-way trip—and she still has unfinished business in Newford. At turns playful and serious, this urban fantasy introduces de Lint’s most enduring character and grapples with the realities of life-changing choices.

The Chaos CrystalThe Chaos Crystal by Jennifer Fallon

The fourth and final title in the Tide Lords series will be released in hardcover and as an ebook in the US on May 10.  The first three books in the series are The Immortal Prince, Gods of Amyrantha, and Palace of Impossible Dreams. I’ve been wanting to read a book by Jennifer Fallon for a while now, so I was thrilled to find this in the mail – until I read the dreaded “book 4 of a series” part. I did see that the hardcover version of the first book in the series is a bargain book on Amazon right now so I am tempted since I have some Amazon gift cards from my birthday last month.  But I’m still considering it (since I did want to get the new Mercy Thompson book, the new book coming out by Catherynne Valente this month, and Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay and none of those are cheap mass market paperbacks – plus this book still is about the trade paperback price as a bargain book).  Has anyone read the series?  What did you think of it?

The magical Tide has turned and the Immortal Lords once again have their full power. The Immortal Lord Cayal welcomes this power as a means to an end–his end, preferably.  Cayal has wanted to cease his existence for longer than human history and it looks like he might finally get his wish.  Rumors swirl that the Chaos Crystal, the mysterious prism that brought the Immortals to the world, has been found. Cayal is determined to seize the gem.

Among those who search for this long-lost object is Cayal’s former lover, the very mortal Lady Arkady.  She’s been captured by Jaxyn, a Tide Lord who is decidedly against Cayal and is seeking the Crystal for his own nefarious schemes. Arkady escapes, and is off on her desperate search…for if the gem falls into the hands of the Immortals, what will become of humanity?

The stakes are high, with mortal and immortal fighting to grasp this ultimate prize. Whoever holds the Crystal can decide the fate of the world.

Degrees of FreedomDegrees of Freedom by Simon Morden

The third book in the Samuil Petrovich series will be released on May 31.  The first two books are Equations of Life and Theories of Flight.  This series sounds pretty interesting, but I don’t have the first two books so it’s not something I’ll be likely to read anytime soon.

The Six Degrees of Petrovitch

Michael is an AI of incalculable complexity trapped under the remains of Oshicora tower. Petrovitch will free him one day, he just has to trust Michael will still be sane by the time he does.

Maddy and Petrovitch have trust issues. She’s left him, but Petrovitch is pretty sure she still loves him.

Sonja Oshicora loves Petrovitch too. But she’s playing a complicated game and it’s not clear that she means to save him from what’s coming.

The CIA wants to save the world. Well, just America, but they’ll call it what they like.

The New Machine Jihad is calling. But Petrovitch killed it. Didn’t he?

And the Armageddonists tried to kill pretty much everyone by blowing the world up. Now, they want to do it again.

Once again, all roads lead back to Petrovitch. Everyone wants something from him, but all he wants is to be free…

The Map of All ThingsThe Map of All Things by Kevin J. Anderson

The second book in the Terra Incognita series will be available in mass market paperback on May 31.  The first book in the series is The Edge of the World.  The third book, The Key to Creation, will be released in July.

After terrible atrocities by both sides, the religious war between Tierra and Uraba has spread and intensified, irreparably dividing the known world. What started as a series of skirmishes has erupted into a full-blown crusade.

Now that the Uraban leader, Soldan-Shah Omra, has captured the ruined city of Ishalem, his construction teams discover a priceless ancient map in an underground vault – a map that can guide brave explorers to the mysterious Key to Creation.