Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Second chapter of The Labyrinth of Flame is up

Hope those of you in the US had a lovely Thanksgiving! Mine was not exactly relaxing, mostly thanks to an annoyingly persistent cold and a lot of solo parenting.  (I took my son to visit relatives in Huntsville, Alabama, while my husband enjoyed a week of blissful solitude, in reparation for the cons I attended the month prior.)  But my son had such a great time at places like the Space & Rocket center in Huntsville that I couldn't help but have fun despite exhaustion.  

Now life's about to get really hectic, as I'm staring down the barrel of some serious day job deadlines. But for those of you who read the first chapter of The Labyrinth of Flame last month, I didn't want to leave you hanging.  Here's Chapter 2 in its entirety!  (As opposed to just the first scene, which I read at World Fantasy.)

Third chapter will be posted in January, as I gear up for the kickstarter in February.  On a final note, though I didn't get much revising done while traveling this past week, I did seize the chance to read.  Here's a quickie run-down of the books I liked best, in case anyone's looking for recs:

To Ride Hell's Chasm (Janny Wurts) - a standalone fantasy from one of the genre's greats. Interesting characters, nail-biting action, and one hell of an epic wilderness trip.  

The Crow (Alison Croggon) - third of her Pellinor epic fantasy series, and my favorite so far. Love Croggon's introspective writing and flair for poetic description.

The Darwin Elevator (Jason Hough) - fast, fun, SF adventure set in a post-apocalyptic Australia. Looking forward to reading the next installment once my husband is done with it.

Zero Sum Game (S.L. Huang) - contemporary SF with a badass heroine whose superpowers are based on her talent for math, which is fun. But it's the odd relationship between the heroine and her sociopathic best friend that really piqued my interest; I have a theory, but I don't know if it's right.  Looking forward to finding out in the next installment.

Mare's War (Tanita S. Davis) - half-historical, half-contemporary YA (not SFF) about two girls taking a reluctant trip with their grandmother, who served in the African-American battalion of the Women's Army Corps during World War II.  I read this on a recommendation from author Kate Elliott and found the story moving and the historical parts fascinating.

M.L. Brennan's Tainted Blood - third in her Generation V urban fantasy series. Yes, they are vampire books, but it just goes to show that in the hands of a talented author, the trope is not yet played out.  I enjoyed this one just as thoroughly as I did the first two, thanks to the engaging characters.