By: Alice Hoffman
Format/Source: Advanced reading copy courtesy of Simon & Schuster CA (Netgalley)
We first met the Owens in the glorious novel Practical Magic. We discovered the tragedy of the Owens siblings in The Rules of Magic. Now we learn how it all began … with a baby abandoned in a snowy English field in the 1600s. Under the care of gentle Hannah Owens, little Maria learns about the ‘Unnamed Arts’. Maria has a gift for them – a gift that may well prove her undoing.
When Maria is abandoned by the man who has declared his love for her, she follows him to Salem, Massachusetts. Here she invokes the curse that will haunt her family. And it’s here that she learns the rules of magic and the lesson that she will carry with her for the rest of her life. Love is the only thing that matters
I enjoyed Practical Magic (review), which I was first introduced to by the movie. I haven’t read the sequel as I tend to be wary of sequels of beloved books written years after the fact. But I was curious about this prequel so in my forays in NetGalley I requested and was approved an eARC of the book. This book will be released on 06 October 2020.
By: Deborah Harkness
Format/Source: Hardback; my purchase
On the battlefields of the American Revolution, Matthew de Clermont meets Marcus MacNeil, a young surgeon from Massachusetts, during a moment of political awakening when it seems that the world is on the brink of a brighter future. When Matthew offers him a chance at immortality and a new life free from the restraints of his puritanical upbringing, Marcus seizes the opportunity to become a vampire. But his transformation is not an easy one and the ancient traditions and responsibilities of the de Clermont family clash with Marcus’s deeply held beliefs in liberty, equality, and brotherhood.
Fast-forward to contemporary Paris, where Phoebe Taylor–the young employee at Sotheby’s whom Marcus has fallen for–is about to embark on her own journey to immortality. Though the modernized version of the process at first seems uncomplicated, the couple discovers that the challenges facing a human who wishes to be a vampire are no less formidable than they were in the eighteenth century. The shadows that Marcus believed he’d escaped centuries ago may return to haunt them both–forever.
A passionate love story and a fascinating exploration of the power of tradition and the possibilities not just for change but for revolution, Time’s Convert channels the supernatural world-building and slow-burning romance that made the All Souls Trilogy instant bestsellers to illuminate a new and vital moment in history, and a love affair that will bridge centuries.
Readers of this blog know that I am a big fan of Deborah Harkness’ All Souls trilogy. So you can imagine my delight with the announcement that there was going to be another book: Time’s Convert. I usually wait until the paperback is out but I could not in this case and my friend gifted it for Christmas last year.
Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day
By: Seanan McGuire
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase
When her sister Patty died, Jenna blamed herself. When Jenna died, she blamed herself for that, too. Unfortunately Jenna died too soon. Living or dead, every soul is promised a certain amount of time, and when Jenna passed she found a heavy debt of time in her record. Unwilling to simply steal that time from the living, Jenna earns every day she leeches with volunteer work at a suicide prevention hotline.
But something has come for the ghosts of New York, something beyond reason, beyond death, beyond hope; something that can bind ghosts to mirrors and make them do its bidding. Only Jenna stands in its way.
I read her novella Every Heart a Doorway (review) last year and greatly enjoyed it. In waiting for the second book in the series, this book came out; the premise piqued my interest and admittedly I had planned on holding off from picking it up but in the end I caved in and picked it up 😛
Her Nightly Embrace (Ravi Pi #1)
By: Adi Tantimedh
Format/Source: Advanced Reading Copy courtesy of Simon & Schuster CA
The first in a trilogy of whip-smart novels—currently in development as a TV series set to star Sendhil Ramamurthy (NBC’s Heroes and Heroes Reborn)—about a destructive private investigator and his eccentric coworkers, who handle cases so high-profile that they never make the headlines.
Ravi Chandra Singh is the last guy you’d expect to become a private detective. A failed religious scholar, he now works for Golden Sentinels, an upmarket London private investigations agency. His colleagues are a band of gleefully amoral and brilliant screw-ups: Ken and Clive, a pair of brutal ex-cops who are also a gay couple; Mark Chapman, a burned-out stoner hiding a great mind; Marcie Holder, a cheerful former publicist; Benjamin Lee, a techie prankster from South London; David Okri, an ambitious lawyer from a well-connected Nigerian immigrant family; and Olivia Wong, an upper-class Hong Kong financial analyst hiding her true skills as one of the most dangerous hackers in the world—all under the watchful eye of Roger Golden, wheeler-dealer extraordinaire, and his mysterious office manager, Cheryl Hughes.
Thrust into a world where the rich, famous, and powerful hire him to solve their problems and wash their dirty laundry, Ravi finds himself in over his head with increasingly gonzo and complex cases – and the recent visions that he’s been having of Hindu gods aren’t helping. As Ravi struggles to stay ahead of danger, he wonders if the things he’s seeing are a delusion – or if he might, in fact, be an unrecognized shaman of the modern world…
I had no idea about this book until I received an ARC of it from Simon & Schuster CA. The premise sounded interesting and jam-packed with crazy happenings and it’s also being developed into a television show. I started reading this actually a few months ago whilst waiting at the dentist’s office; seemed like the perfect book to pass the time waiting. This book will be available on 01 November 2016.
The Ghost Bride
By: Yangsze Choo
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase
“One evening, my father asked me if I would like to become a ghost bride.”
Though ruled by British overlords, the Chinese of colonial Malaya still cling to ancient customs. And in the sleepy port town of Malacca, ghosts and superstitions abound.
Li Lan, the daughter of a genteel but bankrupt family, has few prospects. But fate intervenes when she receives an unusual proposal from the wealthy and powerful Lim family. They want her to become a ghost bride for the family’s only son, who recently died under mysterious circumstances. Rarely practiced, a traditional ghost marriage is used to placate a restless spirit. Such a union would guarantee Li Lan a home for the rest of her days, but at a terrible price.
After an ominous visit to the opulent Lim mansion, Li Lan finds herself haunted not only by her ghostly would-be suitor, but also by her desire for the Lim’s handsome new heir, Tian Bai. Night after night, she is drawn into the shadowy parallel world of the Chinese afterlife, with its ghost cities, paper funeral offerings, vengeful spirits and monstrous bureaucracy—including the mysterious Er Lang, a charming but unpredictable guardian spirit. Li Lan must uncover the Lim family’s darkest secrets — and the truth about her own family — before she is trapped in this ghostly world forever.
Oh man, I’ve been wanting to read this book for soooooooooo long! xD And then when I did get my hands on it, it sat on my TBR pile for a very long time (including an incident whereby I “lost” it on my Kobo library–very weird), until finally I decided to start reading it whilst on the way to and from work 🙂 And then I couldn’t put it down afterwards, hence me finally finishing said book 😛