Dragonseed, by James Maxey, is third in his Dragon Age series.
Following the events in Bitterwood and Dragonforge, the humans have captured Dragon Forge and are being led by the fanatical Ragnar and machinist Burke. But when Burke is forced to flee because of his opposing view, he leaves the group of human refugees in the hands of a madman against a horde of invading dragons. Meanwhile, Jandra goes in search of her genie in hopes of having her powers return. And Bitterwood accompanies young Zeeky in search of her brother. But someone else has discovered the power of the genies and has been attracting followers to his healing magic, creating a loyal gathering of humans and dragons alike.
Maxey has created a vivid and complex world of a futuristic society where dragons have overcome their human creators. Advanced technology has been suppressed and forgotten. In true epic fantasy fashion, there are numerous, colorful characters with distinct stories and motivations that affect their journey. But each character is interconnected, the humans all working towards freedom. And the anthropomorphized dragons are just as important and give life to a powerful story.
In this latest novel, there is just as much danger and suspense for the heroes as well as powerful enemies. Several characters thought dead, make surprising returns. And some characters make untimely ends, with emotional results. With a thrilling showdown, the climactic ending leaves a satisfying conclusion yet room for more. Maxey has impressed me once again. Fantasy fans should not miss this fantastic series.
Courtesy of Viking, I have a giveaway copy of The View From the Bridge: Memories of Star Trek and a Life in Hollywood, by Nicholas Meyer for one lucky winner!
Contest is open to everyone. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends September 11. I’ll draw names on September 12, and notify winners via email.
Maelstrom, by Michael Macconnell
Special Agent Sarah Reilly is on the trail of a serial killer. But before she can arrest him, a mysterious group of men show up and brutally kill him. The men leave no trail or clue as to who they are or why they did it. Meanwhile, another serial killer is copycatting another killer along Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire. Sarah’s father, a retired FBI agent, worked the case years before. Now, Sarah must not only find the vigilante that is hunting down serial killers, but track a serial killer that has targeted Sarah and her father.
Sarah is good at what she does, and doesn’t hesitate to put herself in harm’s way if it means catching a criminal. The men in her life try to look out for her. But she’s exceptionally independent and headstrong. We not only get her perspective throughout the story, but the serial killers as well, which only leads to more suspense and trepidation. My one complaint is that the author, being from Australia, included several words and phrases that were foreign and didn’t make sense for a New Englander to say. Hopefully, if his novels are picked up in the states, the editor will catch these and update for American readers.
The length of the book may seem intimidating, but it was a very fast and easy read. Maelstrom was extremely entertaining. It’s a fast-paced thriller with just enough mystery and suspense to keep you up into the night.
I was able to speak with Katie McGrath in an exclusive interview for SciFiChick.com. Katie portrays the beautiful and mysterious Morgana on NBC’s Merlin, which has fast become one of my favorite new shows this season. The Irish-born actress was extremely witty and engaging, and offered an in-depth look at her character and upcoming episodes.
Katie, for those that haven’t seen Merlin yet, can you tell us about your character Morgana, in your own words?
One thing I’ve always thought about Morgana is that she’s sort of a modern mind in a period body. She’s not your usual warm princess, which is what drew me to her in the first place. She’s feisty… and she’s very modern. And I think that’s what makes her a great character, because women today can identify with her. And she’s a livewire. She’s the only person on the show that can stand up to the king and tell him what she really thinks.
… From where she starts as a princess to where she ends up is the most amazing journey to play. And because so much is going to happen, it gives me so much to play with.
Has the role been challenging for you in any way?
Absolutely. I mean, besides an eight-month shoot that we all came off of, that was exhausting. This was my first big role [as an actress]. There would be days, especially at the start, when I would read the script and I would look at the scene and I’d go “I have no idea how to do this.” I had no idea how to make what they want in the scene happen. And I was lucky to have the most amazing co-stars and director to help me through it. And the start of season 2, which we’re filming at the moment, is such a different feeling than starting season 1. I was so scared at the start. I didn’t know how I was going to bring it off. If you think about it, the character has already been played by Helen Mirren and Helena Bonham Carter. And then, I come along and think, “How am I going to do this mythical person justice?” So, I’m hopefully getting better. And I’m hopefully getting there. But time will tell, if I can pull it off.
Will we get to see some of Morgana’s background in upcoming episodes?
In the first season, you get to see not so much of her background, but more the relationship between her and Uther. In episode 12 that really comes to a head. And you get to see more insight into her character, and sort of enter her mind. But her background, you won’t get to see much until season 2, so you’ll just have to keep watching next year. But episode 12 is great. I found it sort of difficult to film, because I’m very fond of Tony [Head]. It was quite intense, and it was very emotional. And it was just a wonderful episode, hopefully by the end of it you understand the reasonings.
Do we get to delve into the legend of Morgana? Are we going to see a change in her? Will she become the evil antagonist that we know?