Captain Moxley and the Embers of the Empire – Book Review

Captain Moxley and the Embers of the Empire by Dan Hanks

Synopsis:
In post-war 1952, the good guys are supposed to have won. But not everything is as it seems when ex-Spitfire pilot Captain Samantha Moxley is dragged into a fight against the shadowy US government agency she used to work for. Now, with former Nazis and otherworldly monsters on her trail, Captain Moxley is forced into protecting her archaeologist sister in a race to retrieve two ancient keys that will unlock the secrets of a long-lost empire – to ensure a civilisation-destroying weapon doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. But what will she have to sacrifice to save the world?

Review:
Captain Moxley is a smart and strong woman with a mysterious past. And she’ll do anything to protect her sister from impending danger. Even when her sister and her boyfriend make not-so-bright decisions.

Captain Moxley and the Embers of the Empire is pure fun, adventure from beginning to end. It reads like a thrilling Indiana Jones-type movie. And as the mystery of the lost empire unfolds, dangerous foes press in. I only wish we learned more of Moxley’s backstory. I would like to see her fleshed out more along with her former relationship with a certain character. With a bit of fantasy, this drama and suspense-filled story was hard to put down. And an exciting and surprising finale left me wanting more.

Star Trek: Voyager: To Lose The Earth – Book Review

Star Trek: Voyager: To Lose The Earth by Kirsten Beyer

Synopsis:
As the crew of the Full Circle fleet works to determine the fate of their lost ship, the Galen, a struggle for survival begins at the far edge of the galaxy. New revelations about Species 001, the race that built the biodomes that first drew the fleet to investigate planet DK-1116, force Admiral Kathryn Janeway to risk everything to learn the truth.

Review:
To Lose The Earth is a direct sequel to Voyager: Architects of Infinity. Janeway commands the Full Circle fleet, but one of her ships is missing. Meanwhile, the remaining crews investigate Species 001.

While Voyager is just one ship in the fleet, most of her well-known crew is included in the fleet, if spread across the multiple ships. Harry’s girlfriend has been critically injured, he’s trying to keep his infant/fetus daughter alive, and he’s trying to figure out how to get back to the rest of the fleet. I enjoyed this storyline, as his character has matured yet he’s still the same optimist who loves fiercely.

This story is complex yet easy enough to follow. It’s well-paced, with loads of interpersonal drama, mystery, new technology, and suspense. While I miss Voyager‘s original crew and adventures in the Delta quadrant, this series has been a nice jump forward. I enjoy seeing how the crew’s lives developed once they came home – and are now back doing what they do best. This was a fun and exciting adventure that didn’t disappoint.

The Guinevere Deception & The Camelot Betrayal – Book Reviews

The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White

Synopsis:
Princess Guinevere has come to Camelot to wed a stranger: the charismatic King Arthur. With magic clawing at the kingdom’s borders, the great wizard Merlin conjured a solution–send in Guinevere to be Arthur’s wife . . . and his protector from those who want to see the young king’s idyllic city fail. The catch? Guinevere’s real name–and her true identity–is a secret. She is a changeling, a girl who has given up everything to protect Camelot.

To keep Arthur safe, Guinevere must navigate a court in which the old–including Arthur’s own family–demand things continue as they have been, and the new–those drawn by the dream of Camelot–fight for a better way to live. And always, in the green hearts of forests and the black depths of lakes, magic lies in wait to reclaim the land.

The Camelot Betrayal by Kiersten White

Synopsis:
EVERYTHING IS AS IT SHOULD BE IN CAMELOT: King Arthur is expanding his kingdom’s influence with Queen Guinevere at his side. Yet every night, dreams of darkness and unknowable power plague her.

Guinevere might have accepted her role, but she still cannot find a place for herself in all of it. The closer she gets to the people around her–Brangien, pining for her lost love Isolde; Lancelot, fighting to prove her worth as Queen’s knight; and Arthur, everything to everyone and thus never quite enough for Guinevere–the more she realizes how empty she is. She has no sense of who she truly was before she was Guinevere. The more she tries to claim herself as queen, the more she wonders if Mordred was right: she doesn’t belong. She never will.

When a rescue goes awry and results in the death of something precious, a devastated Guinevere returns to Camelot to find the greatest threat yet has arrived. Not in the form of the Dark Queen or an invading army, but in the form of the real Guinevere’s younger sister. Is her deception at an end? And who is she really deceiving–Camelot, or herself?

Review:
I thought I was tired of King Arthur retellings. But this YA fantasy, from Guinevere’s perspective is highly addicting! In fact, she’s only pretending to be Guinevere. She has been tasked by Merlin to use her magical abilities to keep Arthur safe in Camelot where magic has been banished.

In The Guinevere Deception, she is new to Camelot and unsure who to trust. But the more she learns and divulges to Arthur, the more confused she becomes. Everything she has been told may be a lie.

In The Camelot Betrayal, Guinevere’s sister arrives – the one person who could reveal her deception and ruin everything. I love these characters and how they’ve been reimagined for this series. There is a sweet, innocent romance blooming between Guinevere and Arthur. There is more to Mordred and his side of the family than meets the eye. And the political intrigue combined with unknown magical forces, make for a fascinating plot. I thoroughly enjoy how this story has been unfolding. And I can’t wait for the final book in the trilogy. In fact, I wish it was a longer series as there is so much mystery and story left to reveal.

The Preserve – Book Review

The Preserve by Ariel S Winter

Synopsis:
Decimated by plague, the human population is now a minority. Robots—complex AIs almost indistinguishable from humans—are the ruling majority. Nine months ago, in a controversial move, the robot government opened a series of preserves, designated areas where humans can choose to live without robot interference. Now the preserves face their first challenge: someone has been murdered.

Chief of Police Jesse Laughton on the SoCar Preserve is assigned to the case. He fears the factions that were opposed to the preserves will use the crime as evidence that the new system does not work. As he digs for information, robots in the outside world start turning up dead from bad drug-like programs that may have originated on SoCar land. And when Laughton learns his murder victim was a hacker who wrote drug-programs, it appears that the two cases might be linked. Soon, it’s clear that the entire preserve system is in danger of collapsing. Laughton’s former partner, a robot named Kir, arrives to assist on the case, and they soon uncover shocking secrets revealing that life on the preserve is not as peaceful as its human residents claim. But in order to protect humanity’s new way of life, Laughton must solve this murder before it’s too late.

Review:
Chief Jesse Laughton has taken a post in this small, human preserve to have a more quite life with his family. However, this murder investigation soon takes a dangerous path. And his former robot parter, Kir, arrives to assist as their investigations seem to intersect.

The Preserve is a scifi, procedural, mystery. I loved the premise, and was not disappointed. The plot was clever and complex, with seedy characters and plenty of suspense. I really enjoyed the relationship between the former partners – Laughton and Kir. They share a history that isn’t even hinted at, but they share warmth and humor with obvious affection. I’d love to read about their cases, back when they were partners. The setting, a world where robots have taken over, immediately brought me in. And the whodunnit kept me guessing till the very end. This is a standalone, but I’d love to read more stories set in this fascinating world.

Star Trek Voyager: A Celebration – Book Spotlight and Giveaway!

This is a beautiful, large, hardback book. This impressive book is a behind the scenes look at all seven years of Voyager. With an in-depth look at the characters, special episodes, the writers, art department, and much more – this is a fantastic collectable for Voyager fans. There are even interviews with the cast, as well as a bonus interview via a QR code that you can scan on the front cover packaging. I’m going to spend hours looking through this.

Courtesy of Eaglemoss Hero Collector, I have an extra copy of Star Trek Voyager: A Celebration by Ben Robinson for one lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends December 11. I’ll draw a name on December 12, and notify winner via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

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The Wisdom of Picard – Book Review

Star Trek: The Wisdom of Picard edited by Chip Carter

About the book:
Discover all of Captain Jean-Luc Picard’s sage advice, insight, and wisdom from the deck of the U.S.S. Enterprise and beyond in this ultimate collection of wise words from the esteemed Starfleet captain.

Review:
This is a lovely little, hardback book full of quotes from Star Trek’s wisest Captain – Picard. It’s full-color with many photos from both The Next Generation and Picard series. I had a lot of fun browsing through this impressive compellation of Picard quotes. There is a lot of sage advice, moral lessons, and just cute dialog direct from memorable episodes. This would make for a nice gift for any Picard fan and a great collectable.

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