Cover Spotlight: Hot Weather Fantasy

Since the warm, muggy weather is already upon us here in the South, but the North is still under snow in some areas, thought we could all use a few books to look forward to this summer (book blurbs via unless otherwise noted):

This one is by one of my most favorite urban fantasy authors today. Her Kara Gillian book are AWESOMESAUCE. Zombies, admittedly, aren’t my most favorite subject, but I’ll have to give this one a try if only because I know that Rowland is a great UF author. DAW seems to be continuing to treat her well too, with yet another Dos Santos cover! Awesomesauce, times two.

Releases July 5, 2011. Author’s site here.

Teenage delinquent Angel Crawford lives with her redneck father in the swamps of southern Louisiana. She’s a high school dropout, addicted to drugs and alcohol, and has a police record a mile long. But when she’s made into a zombie after a car crash, her addictions disappear, except for her all-consuming need to stay “alive”…

Releases April 12, 2011. Author’s site here.

The gods, makers of worlds, seek to create balance—between matter and energy; and between mortals who strive toward the transcendent, and the natural perils they must tame or overcome. But one of the gods fashions a world filled with hellish creatures far too powerful to allow balance; he is condemned to live for eternity with his most hateful creations in that world’s distant Bourne, restrained by a magical veil kept vital by the power of song.

Millennia pass, awareness of the hidden danger fades to legend, and both song and veil weaken. And the most remote cities are laid waste by fell, nightmarish troops escaped from the Bourne. Some people dismiss the attacks as mere rumor. Instead of standing against the real threat, they persecute those with the knowledge, magic and power to fight these abominations, denying the inevitability of war and annihilation. And the evil from the Bourne swells….

The troubles of the world seem far from the Hollows where Tahn Junell struggles to remember his lost childhood and to understand words he feels compelled to utter each time he draws his bow. Trouble arrives when two strangers—an enigmatic man wearing the sigil of the feared Order of Sheason and a beautiful woman of the legendary Far—come, to take Tahn, his sister and his two best friends on a dangerous, secret journey.

Tahn knows neither why nor where they will go. He knows only that terrible forces have been unleashed upon mankind and he has been called to stand up and face that which most daunts him—his own forgotten secrets and the darkness that would destroy him and his world.

I’ve never read L.A. Banks. Does anyone recommend any of her other books?

This one releases March 29, 2011. Author’s site here.

National bestselling author L.A. Banks’s electrifying new paranormal series is set in a sizzling world where Dark and Light are trapped in an eternal struggle for the fate of mankind.

Celeste Jackson has fought all her life against a fog of hallucination and substance abuse, but it’s not until she meets her protector, Azrael, an angel who has left the safety of the Light, that she learns of the evil forces that have been trying to ruin her, and why. A fierce battle for control of the mortal realm is brewing, and only Celeste—with the help of the Remnant, her half-human, half-angel brethren—can stand in the way. Together, Celeste and Azrael must gather an army of sensitives to defeat the dark powers that have ruled humanity for centuries, but time is running out. If Azrael surrenders to his growing desire for Celeste, he risks being trapped among humanity forever. But the longer he stays, the harder she is to resist. To save the world, Celeste must draw on her own dark experiences with addiction to help Azrael overcome the one temptation that could possibly make him an eternal prisoner—his obsession with her.

I had too many problems with this book’s predecessor to give it a full pass, although it did turn out to be a very popular UF debut last year. This volume follows up in the same world as the first, and it continues the story of Miranda Grey. Despite the cover not being terribly original for an UF, I do like it. It’s the texture more than anything.

Releases July 26, 2011. Blurb via the author’s site:

It’s been three months since musician Miranda Grey became a vampire and married David Solomon, Prime of the South. As Queen, Miranda must quickly come to terms with her new role and learn how to negotiate the treacherous waters of Signet politics, inevitably making dangerous enemies along the way.

As if complicated vampire politics and a rising music career weren’t enough, an enigmatic but powerful force from David’s past appears, leaving a wake of chaos and uncertainty for the Pair’s fledgling relationship. Miranda begins to realize how little she really knows about her husband. But when an assassin begins targeting her friends and allies, the Pair must track down the killer, even as their lives hang in the balance…

The series continues with this third installment in Sinclair’s Darkborn series. I just love, love, love all the covers for the series so far! And I have the first two books, so I really need to get to reading them.

Releases June 7, 2011. Author’s site here.

From the author of Lightborn, the third book in a Regency- flavored fantasy series of magic and manners.

Ben Macallan’s urban fantasy debut takes you on a terrifying journey, lifting the curtain on what really walks our city streets.

Magic dies with the mage, or so the Darkborn believe. That’s why Lady Telmaine Hearne has been condemned to death for sorcery. She’s escaped but is now bound with her mageborn allies for the Borders and war. Meanwhile, her husband, Balthasar, has learned of his family connection to the Shadowborn-and is fighting for survival and sanity as magic turns him against everything he holds dear.

I thought this one sounded interesting. Never heard of the author, though, and I’m not familiar with the publisher’s (Solaris) work.

Releases May 31, 2011. There doesn’t seem to be an author site, but if anyone knows of one please let me know.

Jordan helps kids on the run find their way back home. He’s good at that. He should be – he’s a runaway himself. Sometimes he helps the kids in other, stranger ways. He looks like a regular teenager, but he’s not. He acts like he’s not exactly human, but he is. He treads the line between mundane reality and the world of the supernatural, including the awesome Powers That Be.Desdaemona also knows the non-human world far too well. She tracks Jordan down and enlists his aid in searching for her lost sister Fay, who did a Very Bad Thing involving an immortal. This may be a mistake – for both of them. Too many people are interested now, and some of them are not people at all!

I’ve had my eye on the title of this one alone for a few weeks now, and given the cover and blurb, I’m definitely intrigued! It took me forever to figure out why the author’s name is familiar. I’ve got her first YA book on my TBR shelf. This however is an adult UF it seems (with the author believing it to be good for older teens as well).

Releases May 31, 2011. Author’sLiveJournal here.

Once upon a time, fairies were the stuff of bedtime stories and sweet dreams. Then came the mutations, and the dre-ams became nightmares. Mosquito-size fairies now indulge their taste for human blood—and for most humans, a fairy bite means insanity or death. Luckily, Annabelle Lee isn’t most humans. The hard-drinking, smart-mouthed, bicycle-riding redhead is immune to fairy venom, and able to do the dirty work most humans can’t. Including helping law enforcement— and Cane Cooper, the bayou’s sexiest detective—collect evidence when a body is discovered outside the fairy-proof barricades of her Louisiana town.But Annabelle isn’t equipped to deal with the murder of a sixyear- old girl or a former lover-turned-FBI snob taking an interest in the case. Suddenly her already bumpy relationship with Cane turns even rockier, and even the most trust-worthy friends become suspects. Annabelle’s life is imploding: between relationship drama, a heartbreaking murder investigation, Breeze-crazed drug runners, and a few too many rum and Cokes, Annabelle is a woman on the run—from her past, toward her future, and into the arms of a darkness waiting just for her. . . .

Jenna Black is another of my most favorite urban fantasy authors. I still need to read the last Morgan Kingsley book, but I’m psyched to see the author isn’t giving up on UF (she recently began a YA fantasy series as well).

Releases April 26, 2011. Author’s site here.

From the acclaimed author of the Morgan Kingsley, Exorcist books comes the gripping first novel in a new series about a private eye who discovers, to her surprise, that she’s an immortal huntress.

Nikki Glass can track down any man. But when her latest client turns out to be a true descendant of Hades, Nikki now discovers she can’t die. . . . Crazy as it sounds, Nikki’s manhunting skills are literally god-given. She’s a living, breathing descendant of Artemis who has stepped right into a trap set by the children of the gods. Nikki’s new “friends” include a descendant of Eros, who uses sex as a weapon; a descendant of Loki, whose tricks are no laughing matter; and a half-mad descendant of Kali who thinks she’s a spy. But most powerful of all are the Olympians, a rival clan of immortals seeking to destroy all Descendants who refuse to bow down to them. In the eternal battle of good god/bad god, Nikki would make a divine weapon. But if they think she’ll surrender without a fight, the gods must be crazy. . . .

And lookee here, straight from my most favorite author of all-time, a graphic novel! Admittedly, I’ve never been interested in the graphic novel spin-offs that are seemingly so popular lately for UF series, but Harrison IS my favorite. I might have to check this one out.

Releases July 12, 2011.

Harrison has collected her series of blog posts that have to do with the graphic novel. You can read them here.

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  1. Hm. A lot of those look pretty interesting, but I’ll pass on the White Trash Zombie for the same reason I passed up True Blood. I live in the middle of redneck territory and I can’t stand it, the last thing I want to do is get it mixed up in my reading choices.

    I’ll pass on Surrender the Dark, too. Words cannot express how tired I am of straight-aimed paranormal romance that all blends together and has the exact same male characters described the exact same way as every. other. book in the genre.

    The others look good, though…as long as I don’t see any romancing dudes hanging around.

  2. I know lots of people are hanging out to read White Trash Zombie, but I am not one of them. Zombies and I just don’t mix :)

    And is it bad that when I saw the cover of Shadowflame I thought she was holding a whip? I need to go to bed…

    • Zombies and I usually stay away from one another, too, but I might give this one a go, just to see since I like her other books so much. But if it gets too gross, might not be able to continue. Which is saying something since I found Mark Henry’s first zombie network book to be absolutely hilarious with its ppotty humor and zombie “heroine”. I dunno, I guess we’ll see! ;)

      As for the sword/whip, I wouldn’t worry about it too much lol, the sword does look a little like one if you’re just glancing over it. It’s kind of wispy. Not very rawwrr sword-y. If that makes sense.

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