Happy New Year all! The requisite 2009 wrap-up posts will be coming your way shortly, but first, here are the January books I’m planning on getting.
Karen Chance’s “Death’s Mistress” (urban fantasy): Karen Chance* is one of my all-time favourite UF writers, and this is the second installment in her Dorina Basarab series, set in the same world as her Cassie Palmer books.
I saw this on the shelves yesterday (can I just say I heart Penguin for releasing the UK version at the same time as the US?) and promptly grabbed it. And pretty much devoured it immediately. Never mind the fact I was having a wonderful time reading another book** – I started reading “Death’s Mistress” on the Tube on the way home due to lack of other reading material, and really, couldn’t stop. It was good.
Karen Chance’s writing just gets better with each book. I remember finishing her first book and feeling slightly dazed with the nonstopactionfromthefirstpagetothelast, not to mention the complicated plot, which made so much more sense on the re-read. While “Death’s Mistress” is still a brilliantly fun rollercoaster of a ride, the pacing has improved immensely, and the characters remain just as engaging as ever. And yes, sexy vampires. I’m going to say it, Karen Chance’s books are my replacement for the Anita Blake series.
Out Jan 5 (though obviously on the shelves now), excerpt here
Julie Hyzy’s “Eggsecutive Orders” (mystery): Cute-sy title aside, I can’t wait to get my hands on the third book in Julie Hyzy’s cosy mystery series, focused on Ollie Paras, the executive chef at the White House.
Chef Olivia Paras has too many eggs in one basket-and is feeling like a basket-case…
When NSA big shot Carl Minkus dies right after eating the dinner Olivia Paras’s staff had prepared, all forks point to them. Now the Secret Service is picking apart the kitchen–and scrutinizing the staff’s every move. The timing couldn’t be worse with the White House Lawn Easter Egg Roll to prep for without access to a kitchen. Olivia must find the real culprit–before she cracks under pressure.
Out Jan 5, can’t find an excerpt
Courtney Milan’s “Proof by Seduction” (historical romance): After stumbling over Courtney Milan’s blog sometime back and loving the excerpt from her debut novel, she’s going to be the first new-to-me historical romance author that I’m reading in ages.
I’m serious. I can’t remember the last time I bought a historical written by someone not already on my autobuy list. But the scene in the “Proof by Seduction” excerpt made me snicker and her prose is beautiful. Maybe 2010 will be the year I rediscover my historical romance reading roots?
SHE IS HIS LAST CHANCE FOR A FUTURE OF HAPPINESS . . .
Jenny Keeble has never let her humble upbringing stop her. She’s made her way in the world as a fortune teller, one who convinces her clients her predictions are correct by telling them what they most want to hear. Business is good… until she meets her match in the form of Gareth Carhart, the Marquess of Blakely, a scientist and sworn bachelor.
HE JUST DOESN’T KNOW IT YET.
Broodingly handsome, Gareth is appalled to discover his cousin has fallen under the spell of "Madame Esmerelda," and he vows to prove her a fraud. But his unexpected attraction to the fiery enchantress defies logic. Jenny disrupts every facet of Gareth’s calculated plan— until he can’t decide whether to ruin her or claim her for his own. Now, as they engage in a passionate battle of wills, two lonely souls must choose between everything they know . . . and the boundless possibilities of love.
Out Jan 1, excerpt here
* Linking to her News page instead of the homepage, as that has music.
** Diana Gabaldon’s “An Echo in the Bone”: I’m reading Echo as though it was a series of short stories or a collection of vignettes from [Claire / William / Brianna and Roger – delete as appropriate]’s perspective, as opposed to one massive doorstopper of a book. And enjoying it immensely. We’ll get to the end when we get there.