Shadow Target – Book Excerpt!

Below is an excerpt from the thriller Shadow Target by David Ricciardi!

About the book:
SHADOW TARGET (Berkley Hardcover; June 2021), finds Jake Keller on a list of CIA agents that have been picked off. Jake doesn’t know who is trying to kill him and he doesn’t know why. Still, it’s a threat he can’t ignore.

When his small plane crashes in the Alps, Jake is the only survivor. A rescue helicopter soon arrives, but the men inside are not there to save anyone. They are determined to complete the murderous job they started.

Jake escapes from the mountainside deathtrap, but it won’t be the only attempt on his life. If he’s to have any chance at surviving, he’ll have to find out who’s behind the killings. But the circle of people Jake can trust is distressingly small as he suspects that someone inside the Agency is feeding his every move to the very people who are trying to end his life.

Jake’s quest takes him to the candle-lit cathedrals of Paris and the rain-slicked streets of London. He makes contact with old friends and new enemies along the way–but his true nemesis may be closer than he imagines.

Excerpt:

JAKE CLIPPED HIS access badge onto his jacket and walked across the CIA seal into the original headquarters building. The white marble lobby was dramatic, meant to inspire confidence and reflect enlightenment. Jake passed the Memorial Wall, where stars had been carved into the stone for the CIA employees who’d lost their lives in service to the country. In front of the wall was the Book of Honor. It held the names of the dead and blank lines for those who had lost their lives in times and places that could never be revealed. Many of the men had died in plane crashes. It was a hazard of an occupation that often demanded spur of the-moment access to dangerous places.

A well-known hazard.

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Infinite Dark, Chapter 1 – Comic Review

Infinite Dark – Top Cow
The universe ended, but humanity survived. And for years, the passengers and crew of the vessel Orpheus found the endless void between realities to be a surprisingly peaceful home. Then they found a body; bloodied, brutalized, and surrounded by inscrutable runes. As Security Director Deva Karrell investigates the Orpheus’ first murder, she’ll come face to face with a horror from beyond…

About Top Cow:
Top Cow Productions is an American comics publisher, a partner studio of Image Comics founded by Marc Silvestri in 1992.”

Review:
Security Director Deva Karrell has suffered loss and is frustrated with command and lack of communication. But when she investigates a missing man and his abducted neighbor, confusion escalates when a body is found.

Chapter 1 of Infinite Dark is a dramatic and strong opening to a heart-pounding science fiction mystery and adventure. The artwork is fantastic, dark and detailed. The story begins dramatically with a heartbreaking accident. And a cliffhanger at the end of chapter 1, made me eager to dive into chapter 2 soon. SciFi comic fans will definitely want to check out this original comic series from Top Cow.

Received in May

The following are the books, movies, television shows, etc. I received last month for review and/or giveaways:

DVD / Blu-Ray:
Infinity Train: Book Two DVD
Supernatural The Fifteenth and Final Season Blu-Ray
Primal – The Complete First Season Blu-Ray
Lara Croft Tomb Raider 2-Movie Collection – 4K Blu-Ray

Books Fluent:
Infinite Retribution by Robert Stadnik

Del Rey:
Rabbits by Terry Miles
The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig

Disney Hyperion / Freeform Books:
Like Other Girls by Britta Lundin
Curse of the Specter Queen by Jenny Elder Moke

Macmillan Young Readers / Roaring Brook Press:
The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He

Saga Press:
Among Thieves by M. J. Kuhn

Shadow Mountain:
The Die of Destiny by Frank L. Cole
Legend of the Dragon Slayer: The Origin Story of Dragonwatch by Brandon Mull

Simon Teen:
Of Princes and Promises by Sandhya Menon

Subterranean Press:
The Night and the Music by Lawrence Block

Thomas and Mercer:
Constance by Matthew FitzSimmons

Tor:
The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Buehlman

Rogue: Untouched – Book Review

Rogue: Untouched: A Marvel Heroines Novel by Alisa Kwitney

Synopsis:
Young Rogue’s life is a mess: she’s on her own, working a terrible diner job and hiding from everyone. The powers she has started to develop are terrifying: when your first kiss almost kills the guy, it’s hard to trust anyone – even yourself. Then two people arrive in town who could change her life, and she finally gets a choice: try her luck with the big-haired billionaire who claims to be scouting for gifted interns, or trust the rakish Cajun gambler with the eerie red eyes. But these two aren’t the only ones interested in a mutant just coming into her powers. Rogue will have to master her abilities and decide her own fate – before someone else does.

Review:
Rogue discovers her powers by chance when she meets the dashing Remy. But when they find themselves captured by a mutant slave trade, she decides to hide her gift in order to find a way out for them. This is a fun and exciting new origin story for Rogue. It’s not an X-Men book, but fans will recognize several well-known characters from the comics. The story builds a slow burn with drama building to an exciting, power-packed show-down. With a thrilling plot with plenty of suspense and mystery, I thoroughly enjoyed this fantastic, original Rogue novel.

This Marvel story is from a new publisher with several new and upcoming titles about familiar and some lesser known characters in the Marvel library. I can’t wait to read them all.

The Galaxy, and the Ground Within – Book Review

The Galaxy, and the Ground Within by Becky Chambers

Synopsis:
With no water, no air, and no native life, the planet Gora is unremarkable. The only thing it has going for it is a chance proximity to more popular worlds, making it a decent stopover for ships traveling between the wormholes that keep the Galactic Commons connected. If deep space is a highway, Gora is just your average truck stop.

At the Five-Hop One-Stop, long-haul spacers can stretch their legs (if they have legs, that is), and get fuel, transit permits, and assorted supplies. The Five-Hop is run by an enterprising alien and her sometimes helpful child, who work hard to provide a little piece of home to everyone passing through.

When a freak technological failure halts all traffic to and from Gora, three strangers—all different species with different aims—are thrown together at the Five-Hop. Grounded, with nothing to do but wait, the trio—an exiled artist with an appointment to keep, a cargo runner at a personal crossroads, and a mysterious individual doing her best to help those on the fringes—are compelled to confront where they’ve been, where they might go, and what they are, or could be, to each other.

Review:
While The Galaxy, and the Ground Within is a part of a series, I have only read one other and had no problem jumping in. It’s a wholly standalone story, just a part of a larger, established universe.

The characters are wonderfully vibrant and diverse. There are 4 separate races represented, all very different from each other and humans. Each has a different background, motivation, and destination. Yet we get a deep dive into each character and how they work together as they’re stuck on a remote planet “truck stop.” It’s not action-packed nor any nefarious mystery, but it’s a completely absorbing story that made it hard to put down. I fell in love with each of these characters and how this one adventure affected each of them. It’s powerful and captivating.

Received in April

The following are the books, movies, television shows, etc. I received last month for review and/or giveaways:

Ariane Books:
The Mystic Quest: The Magical Journey Begins by Nancy Harvey

Dark Horse Comics:
Earth Boy by Paul Tobin

Del Rey:
Star Wars: Thrawn Ascendancy Book II: Greater Good by Timothy Zahn
Paper & Blood by Kevin Hearne

Disney Hyperion:
The Last Fallen Star by Graci Kim
Willa of Dark Hollow by Robert Beatty
Paola Santiago and the Forest of Nightmares by Tehlor Kay Mejia

Insight Comics:
Marvel Comics: The Variant Covers by John Rhett Thomas

Random House:
Scorpion by Christian Cantrell

Random House Children’s / Delacorte Press:
Finn and the Time-Traveling Pajamas by Michael Buckley

Simon & Schuster Children’s / Aladdin:
The Revenge of Magic: The Chosen One by James Riley
Girls with Rebel Souls by Suzanne Young

Subterranean Press:
The Best of David Brin by David Brin
Everything in All the Wrong Order by Chaz Brenchley
City of Songs by Anthony Ryan

Tor:
Immunity Index by Sue Burke

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