Book Giveaway: The Man From Berlin

Courtesy of Berkley, I have a copy of The Man From Berlin by Luke McCallin for one (1) lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes, please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends July 26. I’ll draw a name on July 27, and notify winners via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

Read moreBook Giveaway: The Man From Berlin

SciFi Book Review: The Last Policeman

The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters

Synopsis:
What’s the point in solving murders if we’re all going to die soon, anyway?

Detective Hank Palace has faced this question ever since asteroid 2011GV1 hovered into view. There’s no chance left. No hope. Just six precious months until impact.

The Last Policeman presents a fascinating portrait of a pre-apocalyptic United States. The economy spirals downward while crops rot in the fields. Churches and synagogues are packed. People all over the world are walking off the job—but not Hank Palace. He’s investigating a death by hanging in a city that sees a dozen suicides every week—except this one feels suspicious, and Palace is the only cop who cares.

Review:
Detective Palace is a regular guy with a better outlook than most. Since the announcement of an impending asteroid impact, suicides are on the rise. And though this latest hanging looks like another suicide, Palace is the only one who believes it was murder. Chaos is looming, but Palace is dedicated to his job – when not many are.

The Last Policeman is a gritty but believable look at a possible future if an apocalyptic event were about to happen – paired with a murder mystery. A well-paced read with an engaging story, this is more than a shallow mystery and will make readers reflect. There is a climactic ending with a big reveal, but also an intriguing cliffhanger that will carry over to the next in this fascinating trilogy.

SciFi Book Review: The Testing

The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau

Synopsis:
The Seven Stages War left much of the planet a charred wasteland. The future belongs to the next generation’s chosen few who must rebuild it. But to enter this elite group, candidates must first pass The Testing—their one chance at a college education and a rewarding career.

Cia Vale is honored to be chosen as a Testing candidate; eager to prove her worthiness as a University student and future leader of the United Commonwealth. But on the eve of her departure, her father’s advice hints at a darker side to her upcoming studies–trust no one.

But surely she can trust Tomas, her handsome childhood friend who offers an alliance? Tomas, who seems to care more about her with the passing of every grueling (and deadly) day of the Testing. To survive, Cia must choose: love without truth or life without trust.

Review:
No one has been chosen for The Testing in Cia’s small town in years. So when Cia is chosen, she is shocked but excited – until a conversation with her father who was also chosen years ago. Cia is immediately on guard and smart about what she takes with her. And though she’s careful about who to trust, she’s a caring person and often thinks of others before herself. The characters are engaging and feel real.

As I read this surprising novel, I could easily liken it to Divergent and The Hunger Games. This incredible dystopia was an exciting, post-apocalyptic thriller that I couldn’t put down. It’s intense, captivating, shocking, and emotional. As soon as I started, I had to keep reading straight through to the end, staying up late to finish. Loaded with suspense, danger, intrigue, and drama – The Testing is the first in a new trilogy that is sure to be hit. I began talking about it before I even finished. Quite simply, it’s one the best novels I’ve read this year.

Received in June

The following are the books, DVDs, and Blu-Rays I received in June for review and/or giveaways:

Ace:
Perdition by Ann Aguirre
Blood Song by Anthony Ryan
The Last President by John Barnes
Neptune’s Brood by Charles Stross

Berkley:
The Man From Berlin by Luke McCallin

Daw:
The Initiate Brother Duology by Sean Russell

DC Comics:
Harlan Ellison’s 7 Against Chaos by Harlan Ellison

Del Rey:
Star Wars: Crucible by Troy Denning

Harper Teen / Belzer + Bray / Katherine Tegen:
Starbounders by Adam Jay Epstein
Born of Illusion by Teri Brown
Rush by Eve Silver
Vortex by S. J. Kincaid
Night School by C. J. Daugherty
Goddess by Josephine Angelini

Harper Voyager:
Kill City Blues by Richard Kadrey

Houghton Mifflin:
The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau

Kensington Books:
Under A Spell by Hannah Jayne

Macmillan Teen / Henry Holt / Fiewel and Friends / FSG:
Uncrashable Dakota by Andy Marino
Slayers: Friends and Traitors by C. J. Hill
Altered by Gennifer Albin
Slayers by C. J. Hill

Pages Publishing:
The Guardian & The Loop by Ismet Yesil

Paizo:
Pathfinder Tales: The Wizard’s Mask by Ed Greenwood

Penguin Teen / Philomel / Dial:
Proxy by Alex London
Bot Wars by J.V. Kade

Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing:
Perpetual Motion Club by Sue Lange

Pocket Books / Gallery:
Geekomancy by Michael R Underwood
Star Trek: The Original Series: The Shocks of Adversity by William Leisner
Rogue Descendant by Jenna Black
Extinct for a Reason: A Field Guide to Failimals and Evolosers by Scott Cooney
Star Trek: Enterprise: Rise of the Federation: A Choice of Futures by Christopher L. Bennett

Pyr:
23 Years on Fire by Joel Shepherd
The Scroll of Years by Chris Willrich

Quirk:
Countdown City by Ben Winters
William Shakespeare’s Star Wars by Ian Doescher

Roc:
Cold Copper by Devon Monk
The Given Sacrifice by S. M. Stirling

Scholastic / Point / Chicken House / Graphix:
Charlie Bone and the Time Twister by Jenny Nimmo
Infinity Ring Book 4: Curse of the Ancients by Matt De La Pena
Spirit Animals Book 1: Wild Born by Brandon Mull
Tommysaurus Rex by Doug Tennapel
The Silver Six by A.J. Lieberman

Silver Leaf Books:
GEN-Ops by Clifford B Bowyer

Simon & Schuster / Touchstone:
The White Forest by Adam McOmber

Simon Teen / Aladdin:
Hollow Earth by John Barrowman

Steam Press:
The Factory World by Joseph Edward Ryan

Tor Books:
Quick Fix by Linda Grimes
Wisp of a Thing by Alex Bledsoe
Kitty’s Big Trouble by Carrie Vaughn
Kitty in the Underworld by Carrie Vaughn
The Goliath Stone by Larry Niven
The Executioner’s Heart by George Mann

Walden Pond Press:
Savvy by Ingrid Law

William Morrow:
The Registry by Shannon Stoker

SciFi Book Review: Star Trek: The Shocks of Adversity

Star Trek: The Shocks of Adversity by William Leisner

Synopsis:
Located far beyond the boundaries of explored space, the Goeg Domain is a political union of dozens of planets and races. When the U.S.S. Enterprise arrives in its territory to investigate an interstellar phenomenon, Commander Laspas of the Domain Defense Corps is at first guarded, then fascinated to discover the existence of an alliance of worlds much like his own, and finds a kindred spirit in Captain James T. Kirk. And when the Enterprise is attacked by the Domains enemies, crippling the starships warp capability and leaving its crew facing the prospect of a slow, months-long journey home, the Goeg leader volunteers the help of his own ship, offering to combine the resources of both vessels to bring the Enterprise to a nearby Domain facility to make the necessary repairs.

But what at first seems to be an act of peace and friendship soon turns out to be a devils bargain, as Kirk and the Enterprise crew learn that there are perhaps more differences than similarities between the Federation and the Domain. When the Goegs adversaries strike again, the Enterprise is drawn deeper and inexorably into the conflict, and Kirk begins to realize that they may have allied themselves with the wrong side….

Review:
This is another solid installment in the Original series. Leisner is one of a select group of authors who are consistent with the characters, original story lines, and stay true to the spirit of the various series.

In The Shocks of Adversity, the crew of the Enterprise meets the Goeg under fire. But they soon begin to make friends with the alien crew. They seem to have a lot in common at first glance. But as the crews intermingle, their differences soon surface, creating problems when they meet up with the Goeg’s adversary. With mystery, suspense, intrigue and drama – Star Trek fans will enjoy this one. Both fast-paced and engaging, I was sorry to see it end. I really liked the introduction of the Goeg Domain and hope we can see more of them in the future.

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