Review: The Future of Another Timeline by Annalee Newitz

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Publisher: Tor Books
Author: Annalee Newitz
Released: September 24th, 2019
Received: BookishFirst
Warnings: Rape, abuse, misogyny, transphobia, sexism, antisemitism
Rating: 4 kitties

I received a copy of The Future of Another Timeline through BookishFirst in exchange for a fair and honest review.

The Future of Another Timeline is the newest novel from the mind of Annalee Newitz. It is, without a shadow of a doubt, the most feminist piece of fiction I’ve read this year. It mashes time travel, punk music, women’s rights, and so much more into one compact novel.

Tess is a time traveler. She works with a group of women known as the Daughters of Harriet, and their goal is to prevent the eroding of women’s rights through time travel interference. In short, she and others like her travel through time to maintain and increase the rights for women, among other equal rights goals.

Beth is a teenage girl living in 1992, and very much not a time traveler. Not yet, at any rate. She lives for grrl punk rock music. It’s the escape her life is desperately in need of. Because every other element in her life feels like it’s out of her control.

These two vastly different characters cross path in some unlikely ways, as their tales slowly unravel before our eyes.

The Future of Another Timeline brings together the tones of The Handmaid’s Tale into a time traveling focus, with the battle for basic women’s rights on the line.

 

“I was looking for anti-travel activists, people who wanted to shut down the Machines”

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Review: What Rose Forgot by Nevada Barr

What Rose ForgotAuthor: Nevada Barr
Released: September 17th, 2019
Received: NetGalley
Warnings: Elder abuse, Kidnappings, Drugging
Rating: 3 1/2 kitties

I received a copy of What Rose Forgot through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

What Rose Forgot is the newest thriller from Nevada Barr – so you just know that this novel is full of action and chilling events. This novel is a standalone piece, so even if you’ve read nothing else by Nevada Barr, you’re safe to pick this one up and start reading.

Rose is not your ordinary grandmother. For one thing, the last few years have been…different for her. Until one day she woke up in a hospital gown, with no idea of where she was or how long she had been held there. She just knew that she had been drugged – and that she needed to get out. And fast.

What follows is a whirlwind of an adventure, as Rose uncovers who did this to her, along with the how’s and why’s. She makes friends and enemies along the way, and in general, has to be the most quirky little old lady you’ll ever read about.

 

“Here’s the thing, since I’ve stopped taking the red capsules, my mind has gotten much clearer. I think I’m being intentionally drugged.”

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Review: The Tenth Girl by Sara Faring

The Tenth GirlPublisher: Imprint
Author: Sara Faring
Released: September 24th, 2019
Received: ARC
Warnings: Child abuse, child death, sexual abuse, suicide
Rating: 4 kitties

I received a copy of The Tenth Girl and opted to review it. No requirement was made of it.

The Tenth Girl is the debut novel of Sara Faring, and it is a gothic psychological thriller novel deeply rooted in Patagonian lore. And it’ll send shivers down your spines.

There’s an abandoned finishing school for girls, and a fresh attempt has been made to get it up and running once again. Despite all of the death and disasters that the house has previously seen.

Enter Mavi, a young woman in desperate need of a fresh start. The isolated finishing school seems like the perfect place for her to make an escape and a new life for herself. But nothing is like what it seems, and it isn’t long before Mavi finds herself in a ghost story to end all ghost stories.

The lore and legend of Patagonia come to life in The Tenth Girl. Here we see a new influence on the specters haunting our leading lady…and how their legend affects the lives of those within these walls.

If I can offer one piece of advice, with The Tenth Girl; be careful when reading about it online. The ending is fragile, in that a single careless placed sentence could ruin the major twist at the end. And trust me; you don’t want to risk that. My review won’t spoil the ending, I promise.

 

“Something in the atmosphere is wrong here, a something I can’t articulate – I only feel a discomfort in the hollow of my chest, the same one that tells you you are not alone when you want to be, or that you are entirely alone when you shouldn’t be.”

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Review: The Long Call by Ann Cleeves

The Long CallPublisher: Minotaur Books
Author: Ann Cleeves
Released: September 3rd, 2019
Received: NetGalley
Rating: 4 kitties

I received a copy of The Long Call through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

The Long Call is the first novel in a new series by Ann Cleeves, called Two Rivers. It’s not connected with any of her other novels or series. Which means it’s a great starting point for new fans! (Such as myself).

Detective Matthew Venn knows what he wants in life – and he won’t exchange his happiness for the acceptance of his family. But that is a rough path to walk. His path in life is rocked when a recent murder brings it all too close to home for his liking.

The Long Call is a tale of secrets buried upon secrets. Of a world that Matthew thought he had left behind. And of the world he and his new family had embraced. This is the moment when the two clash.

This will likely be Detective Venn’s first of many mysteries to solve (if Cleeves’ preference for writing series has anything to say about it). So get settled and ready for a long run.

 

“The day they found the body on the shore, Matthew Venn was already haunted by thoughts of death and dying.”

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Review: Stealing the Scream by Theodore Carter

Stealing the ScreamPublisher: Run Amok Books
Author: Theodore Carter
Released: September 15th, 2019
Received: NetGalley
Rating: 4 kitties

I received a copy of Stealing the Scream through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Stealing the Scream by Theodore Carter blends fact and fiction in this thrilling tale of the infamous art heist; the moment the Scream by Edvard Munch was stolen. And how it mysteriously appeared once again.

Have you ever wondered what happened, the night the Scream was stolen? Or the motivations behind our thieves? What about the reason for it returning? Well, clearly Theodore Carter has wondered. His novel fills in all of the blanks with his own theorized version of events – purely speculative, of course. But still, quite a lot of fun to read.

If you’re looking for a novel that blends art history and mystery into one dramatic tale, then be sure to check out Stealing the Scream.

 

“That would be something. Passers-by standing pensively in front of it contemplating his genius.”

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Review: The Witch King by Nancy Holland

The Witch KingPublisher: Tule Publishing
Author: Nancy Holland
Released: September 16th, 2019
Received: NetGalley
Warnings: Slavery (mentioned), Curses, Dominance, Betrayal
Rating: 3 kitties

I received a copy of The Witch King through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

The Witch King is the third and final novel in The Witch King trilogy by Nancy Holland. The series has been a romantic fantasy; all set in the same world, but with different main characters each time. Though they all connect back to one another, naturally.

Kyr is the son of Thalgor and Erwyn (king and witch, respectively). Now he must do what others before him have done; compromise in the name of peace. For him, that means agreeing to marry a woman he doesn’t love. Only, it turns out that she’s less willing to compromise for the sake of her people.

Ciel is a slave, and one who doesn’t expect to live through this adventure. She would have preferred to stay out of this entirely but felt compelled to do what was right, no matter the cost. So when she had to decide between fleeing or delivering information that would surely result in her death, she opted to do the latter.

 

“He closed his eyes and looked into the murky future. What he saw surprised him, but once seen, it made sense. A perfect solution, in fact, if he could persuade the woman in front of him both of his power and the innocence of his motives.”

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Review: Ashes of Honor (October Daye #6) by Seanan McGuire

Ashes of HonorPublisher: DAW
Author: Seanan McGuire
Released: September 4th, 2012
Received: Own
Rating:  4 1/2 kitties

Ashes of Honor is the sixth novel in the October Daye series by Seanan McGuire, and it’s amazing to see how far Toby has come in this time. She’s still getting herself into all sorts of trouble (no surprise there) while also being one of the most chaotic knights around.

This novel brings a whole different quest to Toby, and from an unlikely source. She’s been tasked to find a missing kid (a job that hits close to home, in her case). Only the kid, Chelsea, isn’t human, but a changeling. One who’s never faced the changelings choice. And that makes her a risk for everyone, but even Toby is shocked by the chaos this one girl leaves in her wake.

Ashes of Honor was an amazing and perfect novel in so many aspects. I know that fans of the series are going to love this one as well and with good reason. Here we get to see Toby at her finest, with all the danger and chaos that made us fall in love with her in the first place.

 

“Sometimes I wonder if it’s because you spent so long lost that you must insist on bringing every lost thing home.” (Seanan McGuire, Ashes of Honor)

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Review: Gideon the Ninth (The Ninth House #1) by Tamsyn Muir

Gideon the NInthPublisher: Tor.com
Author: Tamsyn Muir
Released: September 10th, 2019
Received: Own
Rating: 4 1/2 kitties

Gideon the Ninth is the first novel in the Ninth House series by Tamsyn Muir, and it is arguably one of the most talked about novels of the year. At least, it sure has been filling up my twitter feed.

There are two ways to sum up Gideon the Ninth. There’s a simple way; a condescend description covering the bare bones (pun intended) of the novel. And a more detailed and complex explanation.

The short version: Lesbian necromancers in space. Yes, it sounds brilliant, does it not?

Now for the more complex version:

In a universe where necromancy is king, there live nine houses. But times are changing, and the Emperor is calling back the heirs to each house. The news is dire – for some. For others, it’s the chance of a lifetime.

Gideon never wanted to be a member of Ninth House. She certainly never wanted to become an ossifying nun. Or have anything else to do with Harrowhark. She’d much rather spend time with her broadsword and girly magazines. Or run off and join the war efforts. But the universe hardly listens to what we want, now does it?

Harrowhark Nonagesimus is the Reverend Daughter of the Ninth House. And the only daughter. She carries all of their hopes and dreams on her small (but not frail) shoulders. And she can give back as good as Gideon – if not better.

Together these two are off on a quest, with the fragile hope that the other will maintain their end of the bargain. And neither know what is truly in store.

 

“Gideon marvelled that someone could live in the universe only seventeen years and yet wear black and sneer with such ancient self-assurance.”

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Review: Seeker by Kim Chance

SeekerPublisher: Flux
Author: Kim Chance
Released: September 10th, 2019
Received: NetGalley
Rating: 3 1/2 kitties

I received a copy of Seeker through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Seeker is the second and final novel in the Keeper Duology by Kim Chance. This concludes the tale of Lainey, Ty, and Maggie. And it’s a dramatic tale, to be sure. While this is the second novel in the series, you could easily jump in at this point if you really wanted to. Though you’ll miss out on some of the finer details on their backstory, naturally. Thankfully, Kim Chance’s recap is more comprehensive than not.

Lainey is the Keeper. It’s not a role she ever expected to have, and it’s one that has taken a lot of adjusting. And to be honest, she’s still working on that bit. This is a lot more magic and power than she ever expected or dreamed to have to deal with.

Maggie is Lainey’s best friend. Her world was turned upside down when Lainey became the Keeper. Now she’s a Shifter…and she’s still adjusting to that change in her life. Thankfully, copious amounts of comic book reading have prepared her for this. But no amount of reading can prepare her for the war she and her friends are involved in.

Ty has a dark past. And that past is going to leave scars forever. He knows some of the things he’s done shouldn’t be forgivable. And he’s mostly okay with that. The pain certainly won’t be enough to keep him from doing what needs to be done.

Somehow these three different characters will have to work together in order to beat a greater common enemy. But we’re talking about three teenagers versus one of the oldest and most experienced magical beings out there.

 

“Hollywood made it look so easy: swish and flick. Bibbidi bobbidi boo. The weird nose-twitch thing.

But magic didn’t’ actually work that way.”

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Review: Mother Knows Best by Kira Peikoff

Mother Knows BestPublisher: Crooked Lane Books
Author: Kira Keikoff
Released: September 10th, 2019
Received: NetGalley
Warnings: Child illness/death, pregnancy issues, genetic engineering, kidnapping
Rating: 4 kitties

I received a copy of Mother Knows Best through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Mother Knows Best is a dramatic new thriller from the mind of Kira Keikoff. Here we have all of the thriller elements we know and love, mashed up into a plot full of genetic engineering, drama, and science.

Claire Abrams has always wanted to be a mother. And for a brief time, she even was. But thanks to a genetic mutation running through her cells, her son didn’t get the long life she hoped for him. Now, Claire has the chance to make sure that her future children won’t face the same fate.

But it’s going to require an illegal experiment in order to make it work. Claire is willing to take the risk. And so are the two scientists she’s found. But when things go south, it isn’t Claire who’s left to foot the bill for the risks taken.

That was ten years ago. Ten years of Claire living, constantly looking over her shoulder. Waiting for Jillian to come back into her family’s life. Ten years of waiting. Or dreading.

 

“In this numb state, I am severed from time and space. I find myself tumbling back years, to the last time we saw each other.”

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