Thursday, January 18, 2018

Coloring Books from Fox Chapel Publishing


Book Expo America, or BEA is the largest annual publishing trade fair held in the U.S. It is one of The Qwillery's favorite events, as we get the chance to meet some very cool authors and talk to publishers who educate us on what new books to look forward to in the coming year. Qwill and I were fortunate to meet with a representative of Fox Chapel Publishing during BEA 2017 who kindly provided The Qwillery with samples of their fantasy-themed adult coloring books by illustrators Eric Messenger, Krisa Bousquet and Thaneeya McArdle. I find a great way to relax is to break open a box of colored pencils, markers, or even crayons and get busy coloring, so I absconded with the books.

For the purpose of this review, I'll be breaking down the books by author. I am also including some samples of my finished pages as a reference. Each book has 80 pages, with about 32 of these for coloring. (The backs of the pictures have quotes and little pictures to embellish as well as several lines for notes.) All of the books start with a tutorial which includes a color wheel, coloring tips, and some samples of finished pieces. I found this extremely useful and thought the samples provided inspiration and ideas that sparked my imagination. I think the samples will provide expert guidance to even the most novice artist. Another great feature is that finished masterpieces are neatly and easily torn from the book for display purposes because of their handy perforations.



Fairies, Fantasy Garden and Flower Girls by Krisa Bousquet are whimsical, beautiful, and brim with positivity. Since unicorns are among my favorite fantasy creatures, I chose to start with a picture entitled "Homecoming" in the Fantasy Garden Coloring Book. I used assorted color pencils, water color pencils and markers for highlighting. I really enjoyed working on this picture and tried to use some of the same color schemes that were shown in the example. I was pretty happy with my results shown below. Next, I moved on to a larger picture entitled "A Wave of Magic" in the Fairies Coloring Book. I chose this picture because it had a colored sample on the preceding page and I thought it would be interesting to compare and contrast. I think this was my favorite as I really enjoyed experimenting with color on all the intricate designs.

"Homecoming" color by T.
Maknis with assorted
colored pencils and markers
"A Wave of Magic: color by Krisa Bousquet (right)
and colored by T. Maknis (left) - Markers (Staedler)
Watercolor Pencils (Prismacolor) and Metallic Markers
(Sharpie)



Both the Dominion of Giants: Behemoths of the Fantasy World and Fantasy Adventure: Dragons, Dwarves, Elves, and other Extraordinary Creatures coloring books appealed to my sense of adventure. Each book features fantasy creatures created by Eric Messenger that are sure to inspire and entertain colorists from about 10 years old and up. Before choosing a page to color, I took my time admiring the vast array of choices. I really enjoyed the diversity of the subjects as well as the awesome weaponry and epic quotes. In my opinion, some of the pictures in Messenger's books are better suited for seasoned colorists. Although pictures like Desert Elf, shown below, would be great for beginners on up.

Partially completed "War Orc" color by T. Maknis
- Markers (Staedler)
"Desert Elf" color by T. Maknis
- Markers (Staedler)


Sugar Skulls by Thaneeya McArdle is a cool coloring experience. Sugar Skulls have always intrigued me so I did a little research and found out that Sugar Skulls are one of the most popular symbols associated with the Day of the Dead celebration. They are traditionally decorated in vibrant colors which reflect the Day of the Dead as an opportunity to fondly remember the dearly departed. I really enjoyed the different selections and for my first attempt I chose a design with multiple skulls so I could try out a few color combinations. I enjoyed using the example as a guideline and am very pleased with the results. This book is suitable for all coloring levels.

    
    
Sugar Skull Wheel color by T. Maknis
- Markers (Staedler)


To recap, I really enjoyed my coloring experiences and look forward to more coloring! There is something immensely satisfying about finishing these fantasy creatures. One note of caution: All the books state on their back covers that the high quality paper resists bleed-through, but I did end up with quite a bit of bleeding on a few of my pieces. The bleed-through did not affect the picture on the next page and I would just use caution when blending markers. I also experienced some "pilling" when I used my markers and although none of the pages tore, I was worried about it once or twice. Some of the samples mention the use of Copic markers, but since these are a little pricey, I don't own any and therefore did not have the opportunity to try them. I was most pleased with the results when I used color pencils, but like anything in the world of art, it comes down to personal preference. I would suggest starting with your favorite medium and experimenting from there. I really enjoyed this line of fantasy coloring books and I wholeheartedly recommend them.





KC Doodle Art Fantasy Garden Book
Design Originals, November 8, 2016
Trade Paperback, 80 pages

This bewitching adult coloring book will whisk you away to a land of fairy tale make-believe. From mushroom houses to the carriage that turned into a pumpkin, each magical drawing is ready for easy or advanced coloring depending on your mood.

Visit an enchanted garden where gnomes guard secret treasures, animals can talk, and mysterious flowers bloom! This bewitching coloring book will whisk you away to a land of fairy tale make-believe. From mushroom homes and hidden cottages to the carriage that turned into a pumpkin, each magical drawing is ready for easy or advanced coloring depending on your mood. Social media trendsetter Krisa Bousquet offers dozens of her intricately detailed illustrations, ready to color with markers, colored pencils, watercolors, or gel pens. Krisa gets you started with handy coloring guides that include suggested color palettes and fully colored examples. Printed on one side only of archival-grade, acid-free, 200-year paper, each perforated page detaches easily for gifting or display.




KC Doodle Art Fairies Coloring Book
Design Originals, November 8, 2016
Trade Paperback, 80 pages

This spritely adult coloring book will whisk you to a mystical world of enchanting fairies, ready for easy or advanced coloring depending on your mood. Dozens of whimsical, fun-loving fairies are ready to color with markers, colored pencils, watercolors, or gel pens.

Magical creatures have a way of appearing when you least expect them—hiding in the greenery, dancing in the vines, or peeping through the flowers! This spritely coloring book will whisk you to a mystical world of enchanting fairies, ready for easy or advanced coloring depending on your mood. Social media trendsetter Krisa Bousquet presents dozens of whimsical, fun-loving fairies, ready to color with markers, colored pencils, watercolors, or gel pens. Krisa gets you started with handy coloring guides that include suggested color palettes and fully colored examples. Printed on one side only of archival-grade, acid-free, 200-year paper, each perforated page detaches easily for gifting or display.




KC Doodle Art Flower Girls Coloring Book
Design Originals, November 8, 2016
Trade Paperback, 80 pages

This adult coloring book presents dozens of captivating images of pretty girls surrounded by flowers, ready for you to color with markers, colored pencils, watercolors, or gel pens. Each garden-fresh enchantress is ready for easy or advanced coloring depending on your mood.

From dazzling and delicate to ravishing and radiant, the strong women in this empowering coloring book are deeply in tune with the bursting, blooming earth. Social media trendsetter Krisa Bousquet presents dozens of captivating images of pretty girls surrounded by flowers, ready for you to color with markers, colored pencils, watercolors, or gel pens. Filled and inspired by nature’s bounty, each garden-fresh enchantress is ready for easy or advanced coloring depending on your mood. Krisa gets you started with handy coloring guides that include suggested color palettes and fully colored examples. Printed on one side only of archival-grade, acid-free, 200-year paper, each perforated page detaches easily for gifting or display.




Dominion of Giants Coloring Book: Behemoths of the Fantasy World
Design Originals, March 7, 2017
Trade Paperback, 80 pages

Discover a fabled dominion where Giants are a part of everyday life. In this imaginative coloring book, fantasy illustrator Eric Messinger takes you inside an alternate fantasy world of Kingdom Giants, Hill Giants, Mountain Giants, War Giants, and more.

Ranging in mood from ferocious to gentle, these gargantuan humanoids are ready to color with markers, colored pencils, watercolors, or gel pens. Dominion of Giants Coloring Book includes handy guides to coloring techniques like patterning, combinations, and shading. Guided Coloring Pages make coloring easy for beginners, with beautifully colored examples and ready-to-use color palettes. Each design is printed on one side only of archival-grade, acid-free, 200-year paper, and perforated pages detach easily for gifting or display. This book has earned the DO Magazine Artist Fair Trade Seal of Approval.




Fantasy Adventure Coloring Book: 
        Dragons, Dwarves, Elves, and Other Extraordinary Creatures
Design Originals, March 7, 2017
Trade Paperback, 80 pages

Enter an enchanted land of awesome ogres, legendary dwarves, and supernatural beasts. This imaginative coloring book will cast a spell on colorists of all ages, with fantastic visions of mythical creatures.

Fantasy illustrator Eric Messinger presents dozens of detailed illustrations, ready to color with markers, colored pencils, watercolors, or gel pens. Fantasy Adventure Coloring Book includes handy guides to coloring techniques like patterning, combinations, and shading. Guided Coloring Pages make coloring easy for beginners, with beautifully colored examples and ready-to-use color palettes. Each design is printed on one side only of archival-grade, acid-free, 200-year paper, and perforated pages detach easily for gifting or display. This book has earned the DO Magazine Artist Fair Trade Seal of Approval.




Sugar Skulls Coloring Book
Design Originals, October 4, 2016
Trade Paperback, 80 pages

Inspired by the Mexican holiday Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos), this quirky folk art coloring book offers dozens of fun and playful “Sugar Skull” art activities that will take you on a playful journey of patterning, shading, and coloring.

Enter an exotic world of creative self-expression with this quirky folk art coloring book! Inspired by the Mexican holiday Dia de los Muertos, it offers dozens of fun and playful “Sugar Skull” art activities that will take you on a playful journey of patterning, shading, and coloring. These vibrantly detailed images offer an easy way to de-stress and unleash your inner artist. Thaneeya McArdle’s transcendental art explores a visual language of shape, form, line, and color. Beautifully colored finished examples are provided, along with a handy guide to basic art techniques, from patterning and combinations to shading and color theory. This therapeutic coloring book is perfect for decorating with markers, colored pencils, gel pens, or watercolors. Each design is printed on one side only of archival-grade, acid-free, 200-year paper. Each perforated page detaches easily for gifting or display.

Kodansha Comics announces the “Humble Manga Bundle: Attack on Titan Universe”



Kodansha Comics announces the “Humble Manga Bundle: Attack on
Titan Universe”—including 44 volumes of the apocalyptic megahit plus
exclusive artbook—to go on sale January 17

Buyers of Humble Bundle’s latest pay what they want for first 22 volumes of 
Hajime Isayama’s masterwork, plus all volumes of Lost Girls, No Regrets,
Before the Fall, Junior High, and Spoof on Titan spinoff series!

San Francisco, Calif. (January 16, 2018)—Starting ... January 17, Kodansha Comics will be making available its most highly anticipated Humble Manga Bundle yet, the “Humble Manga Bundle: Attack on Titan Universe” in partnership with Humble Bundle.

The offering amounts to over $500 worth of digital manga, or 44 complete volumes of Hajime Isayama’s monster hit manga Attack on Titan. The actual cost of the bundle is based on Humble Bundle’s unique pay-what-you-want charitable model.

Nintendo Labo Combines the Magic of Nintendo Switch with the Fun of DIY Creations



Nintendo Labo Combines the Magic of Nintendo Switch with the Fun of DIY Creations

Make, Play and Discover with Interactive DIY Kits for Nintendo Switch

REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 17, 2018 – Introducing Nintendo Labo, a new line of interactive build-and-play experiences designed to inspire kids and those who are kids-at-heart. Building on the 129-year history of Nintendo, which is rooted in innovative entertainment and game-play experiences, Nintendo Labo continues the company’s mission of putting smiles on people’s faces.

Together with the Nintendo Switch system (sold separately), the Nintendo Labo kits provide the tools and technology to MAKE fun DIY creations, PLAY games with your creations and DISCOVER how the magic of Nintendo Switch technology shapes ideas into reality.

With each Nintendo Labo kit, kids can transform modular sheets of cardboard – specially designed to interact with the Nintendo Switch console and Joy-Con controllers – into creations called Toy-Con. From a piano to a motorbike, a robot and more, each Toy-Con comes to life when combined with Nintendo Switch in different ways. As you build, you will have fun discovering how the technology works, and might even invent new ways to play with each Toy-Con!

Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux in the Americas on May 15


Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux
Will Arrive in the Americas May 15 for Nintendo 3DS!


IRVINE, Calif. - Jan. 17, 2018 - Calling all United Nations soldiers, a spatial distortion is expected to appear in Antarctica on May 15 when Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux releases for $39.99 (with commensurate European pricing) for Nintendo 3DS™! Featuring additional story content, new illustrations by Masayuki Doi, and a brand-new character, Alex, Strange Journey Redux is an ATLUS JRPG adventure fans of the series won't want to miss!

The Story
A spatial distortion full of demons appeared in Antarctica, threatening to engulf the Earth in Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey. The United Nations responded by tasking a team of highly advanced specialists with piercing the anomaly and figuring out how to stop it from the source. Well, get ready to don your Demonica once again in this new, expanded port. Expect new story content, additional endings, a new dungeon to explore, and more in the return of this sci-fi tinged SMT adventure.

Three Classic Nintendo 3DS Games are Now Only $19.99 Each



Three Classic Nintendo 3DS Games are Now Only $19.99 Each

Super Mario 3D Land, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds and Ultimate NES Remix Join the Nintendo Selects Library

REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 16, 2018 – Starting on Feb. 5, Super Mario 3D Land and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, two of the most acclaimed Nintendo 3DS games of all time, and Ultimate NES Remix, a wildly fun mashup of classic NES games starring classic Nintendo characters, are joining the Nintendo Selects library and will be available at a suggested retail price of only $19.99 each.

The Nintendo Selects library features a wide variety of games for various Nintendo systems, which can each be purchased for the suggested retail price of only $19.99. In addition to the newly added Super Mario 3D Land, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds and Ultimate NES Remix games, other games in the library include classics like Animal Crossing: New Leaf – Welcome amiibo, Kirby: Triple Deluxe, Mario & Luigi: Dream Team and Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon. For a full listing of games in the Nintendo Selects library, visit https://www.nintendo.com/nintendo-selects.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

The FINAL FANTASY XV Universe Expands With the Release of the Royal Edition and Windows Edition on March 6th



THE FINAL FANTASY XV UNIVERSE EXPANDS WITH THE RELEASE OF THE ROYAL EDITION AND WINDOWS EDITION ON MARCH 6

LOS ANGELES (Jan. 15, 2018) – SQUARE ENIX® opens up new ways for fans to journey through the massive world of FINAL FANTASY XV with FINAL FANTASY XV ROYAL EDITION for the Xbox One and PlayStation®4 computer entertainment system, and FINAL FANTASY XV WINDOWS EDITION, coming to STEAM®, Origin and Windows 10. The special editions feature the base game and over 20 game add-ons / DLC (downloadable content), as well as new features including an expanded map of Insomnia with new enemies and side quests and a first-person camera mode.

FINAL FANTASY XV ROYAL EDITION and FINAL FANTASY XV WINDOWS EDITION will feature*:
  • Expanded Map: Insomnia City Ruins – all-new side quests and enemies such as Cerberus and Omega will be available through the expanded map of the Crown City of Insomnia. Players will also take on the Rulers of Yore.
  • A fully-controllable Royal Vessel boat, expanding the world of Eos and allowing players to explore the area between Cape Caem and Altissia. Players will also be able to fish aboard the vessel and discover new fishes and dishes.
  • A new accessory that can activate the new action “Armiger Unleashed” - players will be able to unleash powerful attacks while the Armiger is summoned. After collecting all of the royal arms, players will be able to find an accessory in an unidentified part of the world, enabling access to Armiger Unleashed.
  • A new first-person camera mode, allowing players to experience the game from Noctis’ perspective.
  • More than a dozen pieces of downloadable content including weapons, Regalia car skins and item sets
  • All season pass content including EPISODE GLADIOLUS, EPISODE PROMPTO, MULTIPLAYER EXPANSION: COMRADES** and EPISODE IGNIS
  • Archive – players can review the “Cosmogony” stories scattered throughout the FINAL FANTASY XV world. Additional local myths and legends will also be placed in various new locations, allowing players to obtain more information about the world.
  • Quest to obtain and Strengthen Regalia Type-D
  • New Trophies
  • The FINAL FANTASY XV base game
*Internet access is required
*FINAL FANTASY XV MULTIPLAYER EXPANSION: COMRADES requires a subscription to an Xbox Live Gold membership or a PlayStation®Plus subscription.

2017 RT Reviewers' Choice Award Nominees



RT Book Reviews has announced their 2017 Reviewers’ Choice Award nominees. Nominees are announced in many categories including Science Fiction/Fantasy/Paranormal. You can view all of the categories here. Winners will be announced at the 2018 RT Booklovers Convention in Reno, NV.


SCI-FI/FANTASY

Sci-Fi Novel
  • A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers (Harper Voyager)
  • All Systems Red by Martha Wells (Tor.com)
  • The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden (Harper Voyager) (also nominated for RT Book of the Year)
  • Tomorrow’s Kin by Nancy Kress (Tor Books)
  • Sea of Rust by C. Robert Cargill (Harper Voyager)
  • The Will to Battle by Ada Palmer (Tor Books)

Fantasy Novel
  • Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day by Seanan McGuire (Tor.com)
  • Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys (Tor.com)
  • Within the Sanctuary of Wings by Marie Brennan (Tor Books)
  • The Long Past & Other Stories by Ginn Hale (Blind Eye Books)

Epic Fantasy Novel
  • Death’s Mistress by Terry Goodkind (Tor Books)
  • The Queen of Swords by R.S. Belcher (Tor Books)
  • The Witchwood Crown by Tad Williams (DAW)
  • The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin (Orbit)

Fantasy Adventure
  • Heartstone by Elle Katharine White (Harper Voyager)
  • The Sapphire Manticore by Marie Andreas (Maria Andreas)
  • Ruins & Revenge by Lisa Shearin (NLA Digital LLC)
  • The Dreamer’s Song by Lynn Kurland (Berkley)


PARANORMAL/URBAN FANTASY

Urban Fantasy Novel
  • The Ghoul Vendetta by Lisa Shearin (Ace)
  • Hungry Ghosts by Stephen Blackmoore (DAW)
  • Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs (Ace)
  • Heroine Worship by Sarah Kuhn (DAW)
  • White Trash Zombie Unchained by Diana Rowland (DAW)
  • All Those Explosions Were Someone Else’s Fault by James Alan Gardner (Tor Books)

Urban Fantasy Worldbuilding
  • Battle Hill Bolero by Daniel José Older (Ace)
  • Etched in Bone by Anne Bishop (Roc)
  • Bound by Benedict Jacka (Ace)
  • Blade Bound by Chloe Neill (Berkley)
  • Snared by Jennifer Estep (Pocket Books)

Indie Press/Self-Pub Urban Fantasy
  • Blue Blooded by Amanda Carlson
  • A Dragon of a Different Color by Rachel Aaron
  • Godkiller by Colleen Vanderlinden
  • Volatile Bonds by Jaye Wells
  • Midnight Labyrinth by Elizabeth Hunter

Paranormal Romance
  • Thirst by Jacquelyn Frank (Loveswept)
  • Bound Together by Christine Feehan (Berkley)
  • Into the Fire by Jeaniene Frost (Avon)
  • Red Wolf by Jennifer Ashley (Berkley)
  • Wildfire by Ilona Andrews (Avon)
  • Booke of the Hidden by Jeri Westerson (Diversion Publishing)

Paranormal Worldbuilding
  • The Unyielding by Shelly Laurenston (Kensington)
  • Wicked Abyss by Kresley Cole (Gallery Books)
  • Silver Silence by Nalini Singh (Berkley)
  • The Demon Prince by Ann Aguirre (Ann/Aguirre)

Fantasy Romance
  • Breath of Fire by Amanda Bouchet (Sourcebooks Casablanca)
  • Wardance by Elizabeth Vaughan (Birch Cove Press)
  • The Sea King by C.L. Wilson (Avon)
  • Heart Sight by Robin D. Owens (Berkley)
  • The Kingpin of Camelot by Cassandra Gannon (Star Turtle Publishing)

Futuristic Romance
  • Born of Vengeance by Sherrilyn Kenyon (St. Martin's Press)
  • One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews (Create Space)
  • Sky Raiders by Michelle Diener (Eclipse)


YOUNG ADULT

Young Adult Fantasy
  • Caraval by Stephanie Garber (Flatiron Books)
  • Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh (G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Reader)
  • A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas (Bloomsbury USA Childrens)
  • Shimmer and Burn by Mary Taranta (Margaret K. McElderry Books)
  • One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake (HarperTeen)
  • Akata Warrior by Nnedi Okorafor (Viking Books for Young Readers)

Young Adult Paranormal/SF
  • Freeks by Amanda Hocking (St. Martin's Griffin)
  • Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab (Greenwillow Books)
  • Loved by P.C. Cast, Kristin Cast (Blackstone Publishing)
  • Body Parts by Jessica Kapp (Diversion Publishing)
  • The Mortician’s Daughter: One Foot in the Grave by C.C. Hunter (EverAfter Romance)


ROMANTIC SUSPENSE

Paranormal Romantic Suspense
  • Stormchaser by Cherry Adair (St. Martin's Paperbacks)
  • Her True Match by Paige Tyler (Sourcebooks Casablanca)
  • Twisted Truths by Rebecca Zannetti (Forever)

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Review: A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn


A Treacherous Curse
Author:  Deanna Raybourn
Series:  A Veronica Speedwell Mystery 3
Publisher:  Berkley, January 16, 2018
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 320 Pages
List Price:  US$26.00 (print);  US$12.99 (eBook)
ISBN:  9780451476173 (print);  9780698198401 (eBook)

Members of an Egyptian expedition fall victim to an ancient mummy’s curse in this thrilling Veronica Speedwell novel from the New York Times bestselling author of the Lady Julia Grey mysteries.

London, 1888. As colorful and unfettered as the butterflies she collects, Victorian adventuress Veronica Speedwell can’t resist the allure of an exotic mystery—particularly one involving her enigmatic colleague, Stoker. His former expedition partner has vanished from an archaeological dig with a priceless diadem unearthed from the newly discovered tomb of an Egyptian princess. This disappearance is just the latest in a string of unfortunate events that have plagued the controversial expedition, and rumors abound that the curse of the vengeful princess has been unleashed as the shadowy figure of Anubis himself stalks the streets of London.

But the perils of an ancient curse are not the only challenges Veronica must face as sordid details and malevolent enemies emerge from Stoker’s past. Caught in a tangle of conspiracies and threats—and thrust into the public eye by an enterprising new foe—Veronica must separate facts from fantasy to unravel a web of duplicity that threatens to cost Stoker everything…



Qwill's Thoughts

A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn is the 3rd Veronica Speedwell Mystery after A Curious Beginning and A Perilous Undertaking. Let me say at the outset that this is a fabulous series.

In A Curious Beginning you first meet Veronica Speedwell after the death of her remaining Aunt. Raybourn quickly introduces the reader to Veronica’s character in a fun scene in the vicarage after the funeral. Let’s say that the Vicar and his wife are very put out. Veronica is an intrepid adventurer and lepidopterist who specializes in butterflies. She is not as fond of moths. She has traveled to many places in the world collecting specimens and selling them to finance her trips. She was raised by two Aunts and has no idea of her parentage. A Curious Beginning focuses on events that end up revealing the mystery of Veronica’s birth. Because of the danger she is facing she ends up in the care of Stoker (Revelstoke Templeton-Vane). Stoker is the black sheep of his family, also a natural scientist as well as a surgeon and has a dark past. Watching Veronica and Stoker interact and come to trust each other is incredible fun. Veronica is not a woman who will be told what to do which Stoker finds both intriguing and sometimes exasperating. In A Curious Beginning Veronica and Stoker thwart the plans of those who would either kill or kidnap Veronica.

In A Perilous Undertaking Veronica and Stoker are approached by a member of the Royal family and charged with proving the innocence of Miles Ramsforth who has been found guilty of killing his mistress and is scheduled for execution. This was another superb mystery that tested the mettle of Veronica and Stoker. In A Perilous Undertaking the reader starts to learn more of Stoker’s background and meet some of his family. Raybourn continues not only to develop that characters of Veronica and Stoker but shows the deepening of their friendship. Veronica has made it clear that she does not have dalliances in England and only engages in certain thoroughly natural activities abroad. Stoker is too wounded by what has happened to him to be able to fall for someone again. There is a terrific tension between the characters and the reader is torn between wanting them to have the most remarkable friendship and wanting the relationship to progress beyond that. They are great friends. And this is something they both need. The mystery is once again well-plotted and surprising.

In A Treacherous Curse, Veronica and Stoker are faced with a yet another mystery this time centering on a mummy’s curse. There are an incredible number of moving parts to this mystery and Veronica and Stoker are faced with unraveling the curse plaguing the Tiverton Expedition to Egypt. Anubis had appeared at the camp in Egypt and a death had occurred. The leader of the expedition Sir Leicester Tiverton and his family had returned to England. After Anubis and the death no one local would work in and around the tomb of the Princess Ankheset. Additionally the expedition photographer, Jon de Morgan, had disappeared along with his wife. At the time de Morgan disappeared an artifact from the dig – a fabulous diadem belonging to Ankheset - had also vanished. The disappearance of de Morgan is particularly problematic for Stoker. I will leave you to read the novel to find out why. A Treacherous Curse completes the picture of Stoker’s past and the events following the failed Templeton-Vane Expedition to Amazonia.

Veronica and Stoker have a lot to figure out in A Treacherous Curse while keeping Stoker from being the subject of malicious lies and rumor. Once more they plunge head first into the solving the mysteries. This is the most intricate of the Veronica Speedwell mysteries. Raybourn does a fabulous job with all of the moving parts while deepening the history of Stoker, which is heartbreaking. Veronica’s and Stoker’s friendship is further strengthened by the revelations in the novel as Veronica proves once again that she is on Stoker’s side. She does her very best to make sure that Stoker emotionally survives the revelations about his past.

Raybourn has set these novels in the Victorian era and the setting is extremely well done. The reader really gets the sense of the era and how different Veronica really is. Yet she is not the only woman of intelligence and adventurous spirit of her time. There is even a private club for these intrepid woman that Raybourn has named the Hippolyta Club. This is a wonderful touch and also serves as the setting for some events in the novels.

Raybourn has peopled these mysteries with a wonderfully rich supporting cast – Lord Rosemorran, Veronica's and Stoker's benefactor whose collection they are cataloguing, Lady Wellingtonia Beauclerk, Inspector Mornaday of Scotland Yard, and his boss Sir Hugo Montgomerie, head of Scotland Yard’s Special Branch. In addition to these recurring characters each novel features fascinating and well-developed characters that are involved in the mysteries that Veronica and Stoker must solve.

The Veronica Speedwell Mysteries are fun, well-plotted and thoroughly engaging. I LOVE Veronica and Stoker, the gorgeously wrought Victorian setting and the sophisticated mysteries. This is a fabulous, intriguing and entertaining series that I highly recommend.





Previously

A Curious Beginning
A Veronica Speedwell Mystery 1
Berkley, July 12, 2016
Trade Paperback, 368 Pages
Hardcover and eBook, September 1, 2015

In her thrilling new series, Deanna Raybourn, the New York Times bestselling author of the Lady Julia Grey mysteries, returns once more to Victorian England…and introduces intrepid adventuress Veronica Speedwell. 

London, 1887. After burying her spinster aunt, orphaned Veronica Speedwell is free to resume her world travels in pursuit of scientific inquiry—and the occasional romantic dalliance. As familiar with hunting butterflies as with fending off admirers, Veronica intends to embark upon the journey of a lifetime.

But fate has other plans when Veronica thwarts her own attempted abduction with the help of an enigmatic German baron, who offers her sanctuary in the care of his friend Stoker, a reclusive and bad-tempered natural historian. But before the baron can reveal what he knows of the plot against her, he is found murdered—leaving Veronica and Stoker on the run from an elusive assailant as wary partners in search of the villainous truth.



A Perilous Undertaking
A Veronica Speedwell Mystery 2
Berkley, September 19, 2017
Trade Paperback, 368 Pages
Hardcover, January 10, 2017

Now in paperback, the “wickedly clever and devilishly amusing” (SusanElia MacNeal) Veronica Speedwell returns for a rousing adventure from Deanna Raybourn, the New York Times bestselling author of the Lady Julia Grey Mysteries.

London, 1887. At the Curiosity Club, a ladies-only establishment for daring and intrepid women, Victorian adventuress Veronica Speedwell meets the mysterious Lady Sundridge, who begs her to take on an impossible task—saving society art patron Miles Ramsforth from execution. Ramsforth, accused of the brutal murder of his mistress, Artemisia, will face the hangman’s noose in a week’s time if the real killer is not found.

But Lady Sundridge is not all that she seems, and unmasking her true identity is only the first of many secrets Veronica must uncover. Together with her natural-historian colleague, Stoker, Veronica races against time to find the true murderer. From a Bohemian artists’ colony to a royal palace to a subterranean grotto with a decadent history, the investigation proves to be a very perilous undertaking indeed….

Monday, January 15, 2018

Nominees for the 21st D.I.C.E. Awards Announced by AIAS



HORIZON ZERO DAWN LEADS WITH TEN NOMINATIONS FOR THE 21ST D.I.C.E. AWARDS

Annual Video Game Awards Show Live Streamed by IGN Entertainment

LOS ANGELES – January 12, 2018 - The Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences (AIAS) is pleased to announce the nominees for its 21st D.I.C.E. Awards (#DICEAwards), co-hosted by Greg Miller, co-founder of internet video show and podcast Kinda Funny, and Jessica Chobot of Nerdist News. Academy members will begin general voting for the video game industry’s premier peer-based awards show on Friday, Jan. 12th at 5:00 PM PST.

The winners will be revealed at the D.I.C.E. Awards ceremony on Thursday, Feb. 22nd in Las Vegas as the culmination of the week-long industry gathering at the 2018 D.I.C.E. (Design, Innovate, Communicate, Entertain) Summit (#DICE18). The ceremony will once again be live streamed in its entirety beginning at 8:00 pm PT/11:00 pm ET via media partner IGN Entertainment.

The View From Monday - January 15, 2018


Happy Monday!

There are 6 debuts this week:

Senlin Ascends (Books of Babel 1) by Josiah Bancroft;

Sleep Over: An Oral History of the Apocalypse by H. G. Bells;

A Conspiracy of Whispers by Ada Harper;

Palaces by Simon Jacobs;

Heartland by Ana Simo;

and

The Beauty by Aliya Whiteley.

Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.



From formerly featured DAC Authors:

Apart in the Dark: Novellas by Ania Ahlborn;

Nightwise (Nightwise 1) by R.S. Belcher is out in a new Trade Paperback edition;

Iron Gold (Red Rising 4) by Pierce Brown;

Danger's Cure (Holly Danger 4) by Amanda Carlson;

and

Indelible by Adelia Saunders in out in Trade Paperback.

Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.






Debut novels are highlighted in blue. Novels, etc. by formerly featured DAC Authors are highlighted in green.

January 15, 2018
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Danger's Cure (e) Amanda Carlson Dys/PA - Holly Danger 4
A Conspiracy of Whispers (D)(e) Ada Harper SFR
Ornaments in Jade (ri) Arthur Machen H/Sup - Prose Poems



January 16, 2018
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Apart in the Dark: Novellas Ania Ahlborn H - Collection
The House of Rumour (ri) Jake Arnott LF/Hist/Occ
Senlin Ascends (D) Josiah Bancroft F - Books of Babel 1
Nightwise (h2tp) R. S. Belcher UF - Nightwise 1
Sleep Over: An Oral History of the Apocalypse (D) H. G. Bells SF/AP/PA
The World of The Orville Jeff Bond TV/SF
Iron Gold Pierce Brown SF - Red Rising 4
HALO: Smoke and Shadow Kelly Gay SF - HALO
Palaces (D) Simon Jacobs LF/H
Black Wings of Cthulhu 5 S. T. Joshi (Ed) H - Black Wings of Cthulhu 5 - Anthology
Dreamcatcher (ri) Stephen King SF/AC
Iron Will (Ke) James Maxwell SF - The Shifting Tides 4
The Last Days of New Paris (h2tp) China Miéville F
The Night Market Jonathan Moore PsyTh
Binti: The Night Masquerade Nnedi Okorafor SF - Binti 3
Beauty Sarah Pinborough DF - Fairy Tales 3
The Complete Ack-Ack Macaque Trilogy Gareth L. Powell SF - Ack-Ack Macaque Omnibus
City of Endless Night Douglas Preston
Lincoln Child
Th/Occ - Agent Pendergast 17
A Treacherous Curse Deanna Raybourn HistM - A Veronica Speedwell Mystery 3
Indelible (h2tp) Adelia Saunders LF/MR
Frankenstein: The 1818 Text Mary Shelley Gothic/SF - Penguin Classics
Heartland (D) Ana Simo Dys
NightSun Dan Vining Dys
Blue Plague: Rage Thomas A. Watson SF/AP/PA - Blue Plague 4
The Beauty (D - US) Aliya Whiteley H
The Infinite Future Tim Wirkus LF
The Swan Book (h2tp) Alexis Wright LF
Red Clocks Leni Zumas CW/Dys



January 17, 2018
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
The Ghoul Goes West: A Tor.com Original (e) Dale Bailey F
Power Struggles (e) E. C. Myers SFTh - ReMade Season 2 #9



January 18, 2018
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Doctor Who and the Krikkitmen (e) Douglas Adams
James Goss
SF



D - Debut
e - eBook
Ed - Editor
h2mm - Hardcover to Mass Market Paperback
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
ri - reissue or reprint
Tr - Translator



AC - Alien Contact
AH - Alternate History
AP - Apocalyptic
CF - Contemporary Fantasy
CW - Contemporary Women
CyP - CyberPunk
DF - Dark Fantasy
Dys - Dystopian
F - Fantasy
FiaryT - Fairy Tales
Fict - Fiction
FL - Family Life
FolkT - Folk Tales
GB - Genre Bender
GenEng - Genetic Engineering
GH - Ghost(s)
Gothic - Gothic
GothicR - Gothic Romance
H - Horror
HC - History and Criticism
Hist - Historical
HistF - Historical Fantasy
HistM - Historical Mystery
HU - Humor
LF - Literary Fiction
LM -  Legend and Mythology
M - Mystery
Meta - Metaphysical
MR - Magical Realism
MTI - Media Tie-In
Myth - Mythology
Occ - Occult
P - Paranormal
PA - Post Apocalyptic
PCM - Paranormal Cozy Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
PopCul - Popular Culture
Psy - Psychological
PsyTh - Psychological Thriller
Ref - Reference
SH -Superheroes
SF - Science Fiction
SFTh - Science Fiction Thriller
SFR - Science Fiction Romance
SO - Space Opera
SocSci - Social Science
SP - SteamPunk
SpecFic - Speculative Fiction
Sup - Supernatural
SupTh - Supernatural Thriller
Th - Thriller
TT - Time Travel
UF - Urban Fantasy
UFR - Urban Fantasy Romance

Note: Not all genres and formats are found in the books, etc. listed above.