Archive for the ‘Non-GLBT Fiction’ Category

Shine by Lauren Myracle

Rating: 8/10 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 
Title: Shine
Author: Lauren Myracle
Genre: Young Adult
URL: Amulet Books
Price: US$ 7.95
Summary [from the publisher]:
When her best guy friend falls victim to what seems like a vicious hate crime, 16-year-old Cat sets out to discover who in her small town did it. Richly atmospheric, this daring mystery mines the secrets of a tightly knit Southern community and examines the strength of will it takes to go against everyone you know in the name of justice.

Against a backdrop of poverty, clannishness, drugs, and intolerance, Myracle has crafted a harrowing coming-of-age tale couched in a deeply intelligent mystery. Smart, fearless, and compassionate, this is an unforgettable work from a beloved author.

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The Broken Bell by Frank Tuttle

Rating: 10/10 ★★★★★★★★★★ 
Title: The Broken Bell
Author: Frank Tuttle
Genre: Fantasy, horror
URL: Samhain Publishing
Price: US $6.50
Other Information/warnings: horror, violence
Summary [from the publisher]:
There’s no way Markhat can turn away his newest client. Who is he to refuse the woman he loves—especially when she bribes him with breakfast?
This time it’s Darla’s friend Tamar Fields, whose fiancé vanished days before the wedding. His wealthy family insists Carris Lethway is simply away on urgent business. Tamar smells a lie, and she needs Rannit’s most famous finder to figure out if the source of the suspicious aroma is a conspiracy, or the groom’s cold, sweaty feet.
As if his plate isn’t piled high enough, Mama Hog’s slip of the tongue has landed him in the middle of a good old-fashioned Pot Lockery clan feud. Plus, Rannit’s streets are abuzz with rumors of war—and Tamar’s case has his own lady love hearing wedding bells of her own.
As Rannit arms for battle, Markhat finds himself torn between old alliances and new commitments, and a growing, awful fear that no matter which way he turns, all he loves is about to go up in flames.

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All the Paths of Shadow by Frank Tuttle

Rating: 7/10 ★★★★★★★☆☆☆ 
Title: All the Paths of Shadow
Author: Frank Tuttle
Genre: Fantasy/steampunk
URL: Cool Well Press
Price: US $9.99 for digital version
Other Information/warnings: none
Summary [from the publisher]:
Walk warily, walk swiftly, walk away.

The king’s orders were clear enough. “Move the tower’s shadow,” he bellowed. “I refuse to deliver my commencement speech from the dark.”

As the newly appointed mage to the Crown of Tirlin, Meralda Ovis has no choice but to undertake King Yvin’s ill-conceived task. Tirlin’s first female mage, and the youngest person to ever don the robes of office, Meralda is determined to prove once and for all that she deserves the title. The Tower, though, holds ancient secrets all its own. Secrets that will soon spell destruction for all of Tirlin—unless Meralda can unravel a monstrous curse laid by a legendary villain seven centuries before she was born.

An ancient curse. A haunted tower. A clamorous gathering of nobles, mages, and kings from the Five Realms come together in Tirlin for the fifth-year Accords. Meralda finds herself facing far darker foes than any mere shadow of the tower.

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Welcome Back to the Night by Elizabeth Massie

Rating: 9/10 ★★★★★★★★★☆ 
Title: Welcome Back to the Night
Author: Elizabeth Massie
Genre: Horror
Publisher URL: Leisure Books
Price: out of print
Other Information/warnings: graphic descriptions of torture and murder
Summary [from the publisher]:
A family reunion should be a happy event, a time to see familiar faces, meet new relatives, and reconnect with people you haven’t seen in a while. But the Lynch family reunion isn’t a happy event at all. It is the beginning of a terrifying connection between three cousins and a deranged woman who, for a brief time, had been a part of the family. When these four people are reunited, a bond is formed, a bond that fuses their souls and reveals dark, chilling visions of a tortured past, a tormented present, and a deadly future-not only for them, but for their entire hometown. But will these warnings be enough to enable them to change the horrible fate they have glimpsed?
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The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

Rating: 5/10 ★★★★★☆☆☆☆☆ 
Title: The Knife of Never Letting Go
Author: Patrick Ness
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
URL: Candlewick Press
Price: US$ 18.99
Summary [from the publisher]:
Todd Hewitt is the only boy in a town of men. Ever since the settlers were infected with the Noise germ, Todd can hear everything the men think, and they hear everything he thinks. Todd is just a month away from becoming a man, but in the midst of the cacophony, he knows that the town is hiding something from him — something so awful Todd is forced to flee with only his dog, whose simple, loyal voice he hears too. With hostile men from the town in pursuit, the two stumble upon a strange and eerily silent creature: a girl. Who is she? Why wasn’t she killed by the germ like all the females on New World? Propelled by Todd’s gritty narration, readers are in for a white-knuckle journey in which a boy on the cusp of manhood must unlearn everything he knows in order to figure out who he truly is.
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The Karma Booth by Jeff Pearce

Rating: 8/10 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 
Title: The Karma Booth
Author: Jeff Pearce
Genre: horror, science fiction/speculative
URL: Smashwords
Price: US$6.99
Other Information/warnings: Graphic violence (including against women and children), horror, mild sexual content (het)
Summary [from the publisher]:

They say, “Executing a murderer won’t bring your loved one back.” But now it can! The Karma Booth. It’s terrifying. It’s devastating. It will change history, ethics, religion, science, everything. What are its terrible secrets? How does it work? And how can it be stopped?

Ethics consultant and ex-diplomat Timothy Cale is hired by the U.S. government to investigate this earth-shattering scientific breakthrough, and he better do it soon because the moral quagmires and complications are multiplying. Cale and his partner, London police detective Crystal Anyanike, must stop a powerful psychopath on a killing spree while searching for the elusive billionaire behind the Booth’s invention, the one man with the answers to all their questions…

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The Cadaver Client by Frank Tuttle

Rating: 9/10 ★★★★★★★★★☆ 
Title: The Cadaver Client
Author: Frank Tuttle
Genre: Fantasy, horror
URL: Samhain Publishing
Price: US 3.50
Other Information/warnings: violence, gore
Summary [from the publisher]:
The Markhat Files, Book 4

Humans, Trolls and even the halfdead have all passed through Markhat’s door—more than once—seeking his services as a finder of missing persons and lost loves. This is a first, though. This time, his client is a dead man. At least that’s what Granny Knot claims. But as long as the coin is real, Markhat has no trouble working for a guilt-ridden ghost.

Trouble is exactly what he finds, and soon he suspects his client, ghost or not, has darker motives for finding his estranged wife than the reconciliation he claims. Left with a cadaver for a client, a spook doctor for a partner, and Mama Hog as advisor on all things spiritual, Markhat must unravel a dark mystery ten years old, and do it before another grave is filled. Maybe his own.

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The Banshee’s Walk by Frank Tuttle

Rating: 8/10 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 
Title: The Banshee’s Walk
Author: Frank Tuttle
Genre: fantasy, paranormal
URL: Samhain Publishing
Price: US $5.50
Other Information/warnings: violence, horror

Summary [from the publisher]:
When patron of the arts Lady Erlorne Werewilk hires Markhat to identify the parties who are stealthily mapping out the Lady’s estate by moonlight, Markhat anticipates the usual—greedy relatives or rapacious neighbors plotting a land grab. After all, muses Rannit’s most feckless Finder, the Lady runs a colony filled with young artists. Aside from snits over color and perspective, how dangerous could a squabble over a backwoods house possibly be?

With new partner Gertriss in tow, Markhat takes the Lady’s case. Before the first night is done, the house is visited by murder, mayhem, and the haunting wail of what may be a genuine banshee, come to herald not just one death, but the deaths of all within. Trapped in a house under siege, Markhat must make a desperate gamble with an old enemy to win the race to unlock the secret that lies beneath the Lady’s lands. And find a way to turn that secret against the powerful forces converging on House Werewilk.

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All I Asking For is My Body by Milton Murayama

Rating: 10/10 ★★★★★★★★★★ 

Title: All I Asking For is My Body
Author: Milton Murayama
Genre: Literary Fiction, Coming of Age, Hawaiiana
URL: Amazon
Price: US$9.95

Summary: A trio of stories exploring the plantation life in Hawaii.

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Mama Fish by Rio Youers

Rating: 8.5/10 ★★★★★★★★½☆ 
Title: Mama Fish
Author: Rio Youers
Genre: Dark Fiction (horror/speculative)
URL: Amazon
Price: $7.99 (note that this is a novella length work at 92 pages)

Summary (from the publisher): At Harlequin High School In 1986, Kelvin Fish was the oddball, the weird kid that no one would talk to, except for Patrick Beauchamp who was determined to learn more. When Patrick’s curiosity about Kelvin leads him into a bizarre and tragic series of events, Patrick gets much more than he bargained for.

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