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text 2017-04-30 22:02
Reading progress update: I've read 200 out of 447 pages.
Kojiki - Keith Yatsuhashi

powerful beings engaged in big battles--but it's turning out to be rather an average read.

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review 2017-04-30 20:51
Review: A Collegiate Casting-Out of Devilish Devices (Discworld "Book" 44 of 49ish)
A Collegiate Casting-Out of Devilish Devices - Terry Pratchett

This was cute and a little bit funny, but it was also very short and it didn’t really have any substance.  It was basically a meeting of the Wizards of Unseen University in which they discuss an inspection report for their university.  Alas, Rincewind was nowhere to be found, nor was he even mentioned.

 

This short story can be read for free here.

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review 2017-04-30 20:24
Windsinger (Darkhaven #3)
Windsinger (The Darkhaven Novels, Book 3) - A. F. E. Smith
Ayla Nightshade is now the Overlord of Darkhaven.  She is the only adult Changer left; she can transform into a powerful Alicorn.  Ayla has been working on honing her skills both in Changer and human form with the help of Miles, an alchemist and her husband, Tomas, the Captain of the Helm.  Ayla finally feels like life is calming down, with her three children growing well and a meeting set for a Peace Treaty with an ambassador from the neighboring land of Sol Kardis, Ayla is fulfilling her role as Overlord.  However, the meeting with Sol Kardis goes terribly wrong; after Ayla and the ambassador meet in private, the ambassador suddenly dies.  Ayla is the only suspect and Sol Kardis declares war. Now, Ayla must go to the front lines with Tomas left to run Darkhaven and watch over the children while other members of the Helm frantically try to prove Ayla's innocence and figure out who is truly behind the war.
 
This is the third installment in the Darkhaven series.  Windsinger provided a fast-paced, action filled and suspenseful ride in the wonderful world of Darkhaven.  I was very pleased to see Ayla grow into a confident ruler, expand her powers, be comfortable in her Changer form and have nurturing relationships with her husband and children.  The suspense and intrigue grows right from the start as Ayla meets with the Kardise ambassador.  A twisted political scheme is set forth that involves many of the characters that I have gotten to know over the course of the series.  I was glad to see Sorrow, Zander, Ree and Art have important roles.  As the war rages on, I was also impressed to see Ayla in Alicorn form use her powers. As the end approaches, the tension rose to the point that I did not want to put the book down.  I was surprised at all of the players tangled up in the scheme and how they thought everything would play out. Another awesome installment into the fantasy world of Changers and Darkhaven. 
 
This book was provided for free in return for an honest review. 
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review 2017-04-30 20:09
Review: Unseen Academicals (Discworld Book 43 of 49ish)
Unseen Academicals (Discworld, #37) - Terry Pratchett

This book was semi-entertaining, but it definitely won’t be one of my favorites from Discworld.  I also think I was a little misled by the Discworld chart I’ve been referencing.  The chart lists this as part of the Rincewind series, but he hardly appears in the book at all and has very little to do with the story.  He’s a fun character; I was looking forward to one last book about him.

 

Our main characters are four non-wizards who work on the staff at Unseen University.  The other wizards who often feature in the Rincewind books also get a fair amount of page time, more than Rincewind himself does.  The basic story is that the wizards of Unseen University, to avoid the travesty of a reduced cheese selection, must form up a team and participate in a football competition.  (Soccer to us Americans.) 

 

It wasn’t a bad book, and I liked the main characters, but it was an easy book to put down.  Part of that wasn’t the book’s fault; it was my week to be on call for work, and month end is never the calmest time to be on call, so I was distracted and tired.  It took me most of the week to get through the first half of the book, and then it started to pick up and I was able to finish the second half more quickly.

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review 2017-04-30 17:27
Exile (Exile #1) by Colleen Vanderlinden Review
Exile - Colleen Vanderlinden

Two races fight for what remains of a dying planet.


For generations, the Maarlai, an alien race who fled the destruction of their own home world, have lived silently, hidden, exiled on Earth. They watched, year by year, as humanity destroyed what was once a planet full of hope and promise.


Unable to idly watch as the planet dipped further into destruction, the Maarlai left their hidden villages and went to war with what was left of humanity. With the death of the last great human king, the Maarlai found themselves victorious and vowed to protect and restore the planet that had sheltered them for so long.


A treaty made, an alliance formed.


Shannen of House Lyon is a member of the last of the human royal families. While they bend knee to the Maarlai ruler, her people have not forgotten their former greatness, the years of bloodshed and horror... or the memory of their fallen king.


To ensure a lasting peace between their two peoples, Shannen and three other prominent human women are sent to the Maarlai capital. One of them will wed the future Maarlai king, cementing the peace between former enemies.


When Shannen finds herself married to the Maarlai warrior, she discovers a whole new world... and freedom unlike anything she could have imagined. When war threatens once again, she will need to decide where her loyalties truly lie.

 

 

Review

 

I forgot that Vanderlinden writes Sagas! Ahhggghhh. We are in for a long luscious ride with this series.

 

There isn't really a cliffhanger but more of much more to go in this tale.

 

The alliance marriage makes this feel more like a medieval with aliens and thus a fantasy romance that a science fiction romance but the mash up is well done.

 

The hero comes to cleave to his wife and the heroine comes into her own power. She is a bookworm which I love and never passive about anything but practical. 

 

The pace is sedate but lots is happening and the love story could be more detailed but you feel it.

 

Let's see what happens next!

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