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Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Night of the Dragon by Julie Kagawa, The Last Sister by Kendra Elliot, and Out of Body by Jeffrey Ford

 Night of the Dragon, the final installment of Julie Kagawa's Shadow of the Fox trilogy, follows the little band of heroes to the final conflict with evil.  Hoping against hope to stop the Master of Demon's plan, Yumeko, Tatsumi, Reika, Okame, Daisuke, and the little ghost maiden Suki  embrace the challenges and put their lives on the line for the chance of saving the world.

I love the characters.  I loved the first two books.  This final book, however, deals more with the battles and monsters than with the characters.  I'd be interested in the percentage of time spent on battles vs time spent with characters who have made the trilogy so much fun for me.   The purpose was, perhaps, to increase suspense, but for me, it became simply frustrating.  I quit caring about how many heads and limbs were lost and just wanted to get on with the plot.  Even the appearance of the silent game player that gave a late twist to the plot...didn't quite feel right.

So, if you've been following Shadow of the Fox, you will want to read this to discover a number of secrets revealed and how our charming band of hopefuls end up.  You may not agree with my opinion of too many lengthy battles.

NetGalley/Inkyard Press
YA/Fantasy.  March 31, 2020.  Print length:  384 pages.  

 The Last Sister by Kendra Elliot is the first in her new Columbia River series.  I really enjoyed Elliot's Mercy Kilpatrick series and was pleased to find another series that might keep my interest.

I don't usually listen to audio books, but I did listen to this one while doing mundane chores.  It kept me entertained, and I did a lot more  mindless tasks than I intended.  It was certainly a different experience from reading.

Small town in Oregon, a young black man hanged and his white wife savagely stabbed to death, a weird connection (or two or three) to a murder 20 years previously.

The main character Zander Wells is from a previous series that I haven't read.  A second book is scheduled for this year, and I will probably listen to it as well.  And dust, mop floors, do laundry, do baseboards and ceiling fans, etc.  :)

Kindle Unlimited
Mystery.  January 2020.  Print length:  328 pages.

I rarely read novellas, but I've recently read two, The Order of the Pure Moon Reflecting Water by Zen Cho (which I've scheduled closer to publication) and Jeffrey Ford's Out of Body.

From description: "Jeffrey Ford returns with Out of Body, a new horror story about a small-town librarian whose sleep paralysis becomes something much more."  

OK.  A rather dull librarian experiences out of body episodes that introduce him to the mysteries of the night world.  Murders, vampires, a serial killer, and other strange experiences.  

I was slowly drawn in to this one, mostly because I had no idea what to expect and still don't know what to say about it.

Strange, but not really my thing.

NetGalley/Macmillan, Tor/Forge.
Horror? Fantasy?  May 26, 2020.  Print length:  175 pages.

I'm slowly making my way through two nonfiction books:  The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson and Growing Old by Elizabeth Marshall Thomas.  

Anthropomorphzed Books by Johnathan Wolstenholme found here 


  1. I was sad when Kendra Elliot ended her Mercy Kilpatrick series, but I'm glad she's started a new one. I hope I like it as much. :)

    1. I liked the prepper aspect of the Mercy Kilpatrick series (and those folks would be better prepared for the Covid-19 than the rest of us!). This one is a more conventional FBI series, but it was interesting. I'll look for the next one. :)

  2. I haven't even started on Kendra Elliot's Mercy Kilpatrick series and now she has a new series out. That means more books to follow for me. ;)

    1. Always more books! Start with the Mercy Kilpatrick series, though!

  3. I share your experience when it comes to how and when I listen to audiobooks.

    My wife loves them even more than me - and she doesn't listen to them. She just knows that I'm willing to do more of the boring stuff around the house that needs getting done if I have a good audiobook to take my mind off what I'm really doing. I guess that's the perfect definition of a win-win situation.

    1. :) Yes, I can see unacknowledged benefits to audio books!

  4. I'm not much of a fan of battle scenes in any books. I have trouble following spatial descriptions in writing. They often don't compute in my head. I suspect you are right in thinking the author added them to Night of the Dragon to up the suspense of how it would all finally play out.

    I also enjoy audio books while cleaning or doing yard work. As Sam states above, it makes it a real win/win situation. My only problem is when I keep getting interrupted. Sometimes I feel like putting on the headphones is a sure way to encourage someone to ask me a question!

    1. Instead of suspense, the battle scenes became boring and interrupted the flow of the narrative.

      :) Doing tasks that don't require much thought can become less onerous with a good audio book. I'm home alone most of the time--no one to ask questions or distract my attention.

  5. The Sister sounds AMAZING! I LOVE listening to audiobooks — they make everything from the gym to driving better!

    1. :) I'm becoming a reluctant fan of audio books.

  6. What cool picture of the books. I am a bit intrigued with the "Out of Body" title. Sounds strange but in the right mood I might enjoy that one. I've finally gotten into audiobooks and really like them. Haven't really tried them for other than when I'm driving but need to see how I do with them when doing chores!