Monday, January 04, 2016

Tracey/Trinitytwo’s Favorites of 2015

My literary year was filled with exceptional reading so I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the wonderful authors for the gift of their imaginations. Sally knows it's way too hard for me to pick just one, so I'm offering a few of my tops choices for 2015. Happy New Year and happy reading!

My hands-down favorite for 2015 is The Providence of Fire, Book 2 in the Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne series by Brian Staveley. The Providence of Fire was my book to beat way back in January 2015 and although many came close, it remains on the top of my list. This phenomenal series is everything I look for in epic fantasy and it just keeps getting better and better. I seriously can't wait for March 2016 when book 3, The Last Mortal Bond is due to be released.

The Venusian Gambit, Daedalus 3, by Michael J. Martinez - All good things must come to an end and this series closer finished with a bang! Reading the final pages of this satisfying series made me realize how much some of its characters had come to mean to me and how much I will miss them. If you enjoy alternate history sci fi, this is definitely a series you won't want to miss.

Star Wars Aftermath by Chuck Wendig is an exciting adventure that introduces some great new characters into my favorite sci fi universe. I loved its fresh spin and exhilarating pace. I am psyched about Wendig's next book in the series, Aftermath: Life Debt, which looks will hit U.S. bookstores in May 2016. Note: I like this book better than the recent The Force Awakens film!

Jackaby by William Ritter is a thrilling paranormal YA series with characters that are simply irresistible. Jackaby, the title character, is a younger, quirkier, and more likeable version of Sherlock Holmes, and his plucky young assistant Abigail Rook is delightfully more adventurous than John Watson. Jackaby is a winning combination of humor, horror, and mystery that will instantly hook readers.

I’d like to give a shout-out to three more books that I really enjoyed reading in 2015: Edge of Dark by Brenda Cooper, The Glittering World by Robert Levy and Koko Takes a Holiday by Kieran Shea.

I would love to hear what your top picks are for 2015, so please leave a comment and let me know!

The Giveaway

What:  One entrant will win a signed copy of The Emperor's Blades (Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne 1) by Brian Staveley.

How:  Log into and follow the directions in the Rafflecopter below. Note that comments are moderated.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on January 12, 2016. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Providence of Fire
Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne 2
Tor Books, January 13, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 608 pages

The conspiracy to destroy the ruling family of the Annurian Empire is far from over.

Having learned the identity of her father's assassin, Adare flees the Dawn Palace is search of allies to challenge the coup against her family. Few trust her, but when she is believed to be touched by Intarra, patron goddess of the empire, people rally to help her retake the capital city. As armies prepare to clash, the threat of invasion from barbarian hordes compels the rival forces to unite against their common enemy.

Unknown to Adare, her brother Valyn, renegade member of the empire's most elite fighting force, has allied with the invading nomads. The terrible choices each of them has made may make war between them inevitable.

Between Valyn and Adare is their brother Kaden, rightful heir to the Unhewn Throne, who has infiltrated the Annurian capital with the help of two strange companions. The knowledge they possess of the secret history that shapes these events could save Annur or destroy it

The Venusian Gambit
Daedalus 3
Night Shade Books, May 5, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

The last chapter of the dimension-spanning Daedalus series brings the 19th and 22nd centuries together for an explosive finale in the jungles of Venus!

In the year 2135, dangerous alien life forms freed in the destruction of Saturn’s moon Enceladus are making their way towards Earth. A task force spearheaded by Lt. Cmdr. Shaila Jain is scrambling to beat them there while simultaneously trying to save crewmember Stephane Durand, who was infected during the mission to Saturn and is now controlled by a form of life intent on reopening a transdimensional rift and destroying the human race. But Jain doesn’t realize that the possessed Stephane has bigger plans, beaming critical data to other conspirators suspiciously heading not for Earth, but for Venus…

In 1809—a Napoleonic era far different from our own—the French have occupied England with their Corps Eternélle, undead soldiers risen to new life through the darkest Alchemy. Only the actions of Lord Admiral Thomas Weatherby and the Royal Navy have kept the French contained to Earth. But the machinations of old enemies point to a bold and daring gambit: an ancient weapon, presumed lost in the jungles of Venus.

Now, Weatherby must choose whether to stay and fight to retake his homeland or pursue the French to the green planet. And Shaila must decide if it’s possible to save the man she loves, or if he must be sacrificed for the good of two dimensions. In the dark, alien jungles of Venus, humanity’s fate in both dimensions hangs in the balance—forcing past and present to once again join forces against an ancient terror.

Star Wars: Aftermath
Aftermath Trilogy 1
LucasBooks, September 4, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages

The second Death Star has been destroyed, the Emperor killed, and Darth Vader struck down. Devastating blows against the Empire, and major victories for the Rebel Alliance. But the battle for freedom is far from over.

As the Empire reels from its critical defeats at the Battle of Endor, the Rebel Alliance—now a fledgling New Republic—presses its advantage by hunting down the enemy’s scattered forces before they can regroup and retaliate. But above the remote planet Akiva, an ominous show of the enemy’s strength is unfolding. Out on a lone reconnaissance mission, pilot Wedge Antilles watches Imperial Star Destroyers gather like birds of prey circling for a kill, but he’s taken captive before he can report back to the New Republic leaders.

Meanwhile, on the planet’s surface, former rebel fighter Norra Wexley has returned to her native world—war weary, ready to reunite with her estranged son, and eager to build a new life in some distant place. But when Norra intercepts Wedge Antilles’s urgent distress call, she realizes her time as a freedom fighter is not yet over. What she doesn’t know is just how close the enemy is—or how decisive and dangerous her new mission will be.

Determined to preserve the Empire’s power, the surviving Imperial elite are converging on Akiva for a top-secret emergency summit—to consolidate their forces and rally for a counterstrike. But they haven’t reckoned on Norra and her newfound allies—her technical-genius son, a Zabrak bounty hunter, and a reprobate Imperial defector—who are prepared to do whatever they must to end the Empire’s oppressive reign once and for all.

Jackaby 1
Algonquin Books, August 25, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

Newly arrived in New Fiddleham, New England, 1892, and in need of a job, Abigail Rook meets R. F. Jackaby, an investigator of the unexplained with a keen eye for the extraordinary--including the ability to see supernatural beings. Abigail has a gift for noticing ordinary but important details, which makes her perfect for the position of Jackaby’s assistant. On her first day, Abigail finds herself in the midst of a thrilling case: A serial killer is on the loose. The police are convinced it’s an ordinary villain, but Jackaby is certain the foul deeds are the work of the kind of creature whose very existence the local authorities--with the exception of a handsome young detective named Charlie Cane--seem adamant to deny.

Edge of Dark
The Glittering Edge 1
Pyr, March 3, 2015
Trade Paperback and eBook, 399 pages

What if a society banished its worst nightmare to the far edge of the solar system, destined to sip only dregs of light and struggle for the barest living. And yet, that life thrived? It grew and learned and became far more than you ever expected, and it wanted to return to the sun. What if it didn't share your moral compass in any way?

The Glittering Edge duology describes the clash of forces when an advanced society that has filled a solar system with flesh and blood life meets the near-AI's that it banished long ago. This is a story of love for the wild and natural life on a colony planet, complex adventure set in powerful space stations, and the desire to live completely whether you are made of flesh and bone or silicon and carbon fiber.

In Edge of Dark, meet ranger Charlie Windar and his adopted wild predator, and explore their home on a planet that has been raped and restored more than once. Meet Nona Hall, child of power and privilege from the greatest station in the system, the Diamond Deep. Meet Nona's best friend, a young woman named Chrystal who awakens in a robotic body….

The Glittering World
Gallery Books, February 10, 2015
Hardcover and eBook, 352 pages

In the tradition of Neil Gaiman (The Ocean at the End of the Lane), Scott Smith (The Ruins), and Jason Mott (The Returned), award-winning playwright Robert Levy spins a dark tale of alienation and belonging, the familiar and the surreal, family secrets and the search for truth in his debut supernatural thriller.

When up-and-coming chef Michael “Blue” Whitley returns with three friends to the remote Canadian community of his birth, it appears to be the perfect getaway from New York. He soon discovers, however, that everything he thought he knew about himself is a carefully orchestrated lie. Though he had no recollection of the event, as a young boy, Blue and another child went missing for weeks in the idyllic, mysterious woods of Starling Cove. Soon thereafter, his mother suddenly fled with him to America, their homeland left behind.

But then Blue begins to remember. And once the shocking truth starts bleeding back into his life, his closest friends—Elisa, his former partner in crime; her stalwart husband, Jason; and Gabe, Blue’s young and admiring coworker—must unravel the secrets of Starling Cove and the artists’ colony it once harbored. All four will face their troubled pasts, their most private demons, and a mysterious race of beings that inhabits the land, spoken of by the locals only as the Other Kind...

Koko Takes a Holiday
Koko 1
Titan Books, July 28, 2015
Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Trade Paperback and eBook, June 10, 2014

Five hundred years from now, ex-corporate mercenary Koko Martstellar is swaggering through an early retirement as a brothel owner on The Sixty Islands, a manufactured tropical resort archipelago known for its sex and simulated violence. Surrounded by slang-drooling boywhores and synthetic komodo dragons, the most challenging part of Koko’s day is deciding on her next drink. That is, until her old comrade Portia Delacompte sends a squad of security personnel to murder her.


  1. Novels for 2015 - The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah,The Sunrise by Victoria Hislop, The Last Concerto by Helene Mario. Thanks for this lovely feature. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  2. Savages by K J Parker,Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen by Lois McMaster Bujold (it was an ARC)& The Diabolical Miss Hyde by Viola Carr.

  3. traveler and bobby_5150; thanks for sharing. I like hearing your recommendations and will definitely check them out.