Books for December

See, a timely post! Here are the new releases I’m planning to buy this month and then indulge in over the Christmas holidays:

Juliet Marillier‘s “Seer of Sevenwaters” (fantasy): I only discovered Juliet Marillier a couple of years ago, but her Sevenwaters books sit firmly on my keeper shelves.  So a new Sevenwaters book  is always a cause for celebration – the only fly in the ointment is that there is no UK release.  Why??!!!  Not happy, people.  The silver lining is that because of this, I pre-ordered the US edition from The Book Depository and just received an email saying it’s on the way.

The blurb from the author’s website (Sibeal’s story!):

Sibeal has always known that she is destined for a spiritual life, and is committed to it with all her heart. Before making her final vows, she travels to the northern island of Inis Eala to spend the summer with her sisters, Muirrin and Clodagh.

But Sibeal has barely set foot on the island when a freak storm out at sea sinks a ship before her eyes. In spite of frantic rescue efforts, only three survivors are fished alive from the water, and one of them, a man Sibeal names Ardal, clings to life by the merest thread.

As Ardal fights for his life, the island community discovers that there is something unusual about the three shipwrecked strangers. The beautiful Svala is mute and disturbed. Stalwart warrior Knut seems ashamed of his grieving wife. And Ardal has a secret he can’t remember … or won’t tell. When the astonishing truth comes out, Sibeal finds herself drawn into a perilous quest. At its end, she will face a decision that may break her heart.

Out Dec 7 (excerpt)

LB Gregg, ZA Maxfield, Josh Lanyon, and Harper Fox‘s “His for the Holidays” (m/m romance): This anthology from Carina Press is sounding like a very good one.  Each writer brings something different to the table, IMO – I love the slightly offbeat sense of humour in LB Gregg’s writing, the angst that Harper Fox excels in, and oh, pretty much all aspects of Josh Lanyon’s writing.  And ZA Maxfield is on my to-try list, so this anthology really ticks all the boxes.

Hope brightens a bleak Edinburgh December. A man gets a second chance with his high school crush. A decade-long game of cat and mouse comes to a passionate conclusion. And Santa Claus drives a red muscle car. Heat up your holidays with this collection of four festive tales from some of the top talent in the male/male genre.

Out Dec 6 (book page at Carina Press)

Richelle Mead‘s “Last Sacrifice” (YA urban fantasy): The last book in Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series,  though there will be a spin-off series in the same world.  I like these books, but haven’t fallen in love with the series – I’m not sure why.  Ms Mead has a massive fanbase for these books though, so I’m probably in a minority.  Having said that, I do find the VA series pretty addictive reading, and I will be getting this because I want to know what happens in the end.  Also, the UK cover?  Meh.

Blurb from Goodreads:

Murder. Love. Jealousy. And the ultimate sacrifice. Now, with Rose on trial for her life and Lissa first in line for the Royal Throne, nothing will ever be the same between them.

Out Dec 7 (excerpt)

Julia Quinn, Eloisa James, and Connie Brockway‘s “The Lady Most Likely…” (historical romance): Julia Quinn and Eloisa James are amongst the very few historical romance authors that remain autobuys for me (I probably have read some Connie Brockway before, but none of her books comes to mind immediately).  I’m never quite sure how a collaboration between different authors will turn out – sometimes it works, sometimes not – but I’ll still be getting this.  I’m also not sure exactly how this book is structured; the authors refer to it as “a novel in three parts” – does this mean three linked but separate stories, one story with three acts… anyone know?

From Ms James’ website:

Hugh Dunne, the Earl of Briarly, needs a wife, so his sister hands him a list of delectable damsels and promises to invite them—and a few other gentlemen—to her country house for what is sure to be the event of the season. Hugh will have time to woo whichever lady he most desires… Unless someone else snatches her first.

Out Dec 28 (excerpt)

Mercedes Lackey‘s “Finding the Way and Other Tales of Valdemar” (fantasy): I don’t know why I always feel as though I have to justify my addiction to the Valdemar stories (she says, embarrassedly).  I think a new collection of Valdemar stories has been released at this time of the year for the past few years, so yay for more Heralds, white Companions, and all that.

Blurb from Amazon:

In March 1987, a young author from Oklahoma published her first novel, Arrows of the Queen. This modest book about a magical land called Valdemar was the beginning of a fantasy masterwork series that would span decades and include more than two dozen titles. Now readers can take a journey to the world of Valdemar-including Tanya Huff, Mickey Zucker Reichert, Fiona Patton, and Judith Tarr-each adding their own special touches.

Out Dec 7

“Love and Rockets” edited by Martin H Greenberg and Kerrie Hughes (SF romance): I was in two minds about whether to put up the cover or not, because DAW appears to have decided to enter this one into the “Worst Cover of the Year” award.  I like the monthly themed DAW anthologies, but I have no idea why their covers are so hit or miss.  There have been some rather striking ones, but equally some that make me think no one was that bothered, and some truly awful ones.  Cover aside, this is an SF-romance crossover anthology, which is a genre I’m quite keen on, so I’m hoping I come across some new-to-me authors in this one. I can’t find a list of contributors, though I know Lois McMaster Bujold has written an introduction.  Here is the table of contents, courtesy of contributor Steven H Silver.

Blurb from Amazon:

Space…the final frontier. Or is it? Many say there’s no frontier more forbidding than a romantic relationship between a man and a woman. But what if one’s a human, and the other’s an alien? Here is an original collection of space opera stories where authors take love (unrequited or not), on a spaceship, space station, or planetary colony, and add enough drama, confusion and mayhem to ensure that the path to true love-or short-term infatuation-is seldom free of obstacles.

Out Dec 7

12 thoughts on “Books for December

  1. I keep buying the Valdemar anthologies, too, for the setting and the great authors she always has. I didn’t much like Intrigues, though.

  2. Janicu – I have Googled like mad but can’t find a table of contents for this. DAW really drive me mad with their anthologies sometimes. Hopefully I can get the Kindle edition tomorrow and start reading!

    Estara – Heh. Glad to know I’m not the only one! Tanya Huff has a story in this one, IIRC, and I usually like her contributions. Intrigues was… well, I should have waited for the paperback, really.

  3. You may have seen the contents of Love and Rockets by now, but if not, I have it listed here. I’ll note that not only am I in this book, but also in last year’s Zombie Raccoons and Killer Bunnies, for whatever that says about covers on books I appear in.

  4. shsilver – Thank you! Obviously my Google-fu let me down on this one. I look forward to reading your story (and the rest) in this one – I admit to passing on ZRKB, though probably more because of the theme as opposed to the cover.

  5. Let me know how Seer of Sevenwaters is! I really enjoyed books 1,2 and 3 of the Sevenwaters series, but was a little disappointed by Heir to Sevenwaters.

    Also, I’ve always wondered about Mercedes Lackey and the Valdemar books – what are they about? I’ll have to look into that!

  6. Oh, and those covers for the DAW anthology are hilarious. I’m not a big scifi reader, but i’ve recently been getting into them (I also love short stories) ~ I can’t wait to read your review of that!

  7. Sharry – I bought L&R the other day, now it’s just finding the time to read it!

    And the Valdemar books – ah, they sort of work best when you’re a teenager thinking no one in the world understands you, but they are still brilliant and amongst my comfort reads. There are two excellent trilogies, one being Talia’s Arrows of the Queen trilogy and the second Vanyel’s The Last Herald-Mage, which Rosario reviewed a while back:

    The more recent books have unfortunately lost the spark that made those books so appealing IMO, but because of the hours I spent reading about Heralds and their telepathic white horses Companions when I was a teen, I am still a total sucker for them!

  8. You need to let us know whether the L & R is good 😉 I’ve seen it at the bookstore, but skipped over. I’m not such a sci-fi fan and that is why… LOL, the cover is not pretty, but it’s fun no?

    I’m still debating also on the historical anthology. The only author that I follow in it is Julia Quinn…

  9. Nath – I quite want to know whether it is an anthology or not! I love both Julia Quinn and Eloisa James, but I think I still have their latest books in my TBR pile. With the Christmas holidays coming up, I’m hoping I get enough time to make a dent in that pile of books…

  10. Hmmm, I saw the three names on the cover and just assume that it was an anthology… but it’s not. On the cover, just over the title, it says: a novel in three parts. I guess that means each author is writing a part… Now, this is more interesting! LOL.

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