Sunday, November 23, 2014

Edi's Spotlight: The Furnace by Timothy S Johnston

Dear Readers,

it is science fiction time. Time warp ..... into the year 2401 AD.
This is the first case of investigator Lieutenant Kyle Tanner from CCF (= Confederated Combined Forces).

In August 2014 I visited Sci-Fi Fan Letter. Since then I own copies of two more digital books.
I read both - I finished the second one on 2012-09-22 - and liked them a lot.

I talk about the science fiction series The Tanner Sequence  by Timothy S. Johnston, so far consisting of The Furnace (digital 2013) [Kindle edition ASIN: B00F942TT2]  and The Freezer (digital 2014) [Kindle edition ASIN: B00KPJNL3E]. The title of the next book is The Void and is coming in early 2015.

Book Store Information
In general my decision to read a book is mostly based on the cover and the blurb/synopsis delivered on the back cover. You do not get more information when you are in a book store. The world of books is changing which means I also will take in account blurbs and descriptions on GOODREADS and other places.
Here we go:

The Furnace (digital 2013) 
[Kindle edition ASIN: B00F942TT2

"Dead Space, 2401 AD

Kyle Tanner is about to die. Alone, floating in a vacsuit only a few million kilometers from a massive, uncaring sun, he has barely enough time or juice to get out a distress signal before either his oxygen runs out or he succumbs to the radiation.

When the CCF sent investigator Kyle Tanner to SOLEX One, a solar energy harvester past Mercury, he thought it would be an open-and-shut murder case. A crew member was found dead, minus his head and hands. Not the worst Tanner has ever seen, but the deeper he delves, the more nightmarish it becomes. A shadowy figure, bleeding from his hands, assaults Tanner in his quarters. Then two more turn up dead, missing their heads and hands as well.

With no one to trust and everyone a suspect—even the intriguing chief engineer, Shaheen—Tanner must navigate a crew on the brink of madness to uncover a conspiracy that could threaten the whole of the human race. Even if it means making the ultimate sacrifice…" [Source]

The Delivery
The 334 pages are divided into five main parts which are subdivided into 34 consecutively numbered chapters followed by an epilogue. Narration is in first person via main character Lieutenant Kyle Tanner, CCF investigator.

 The book description delivers a good summary of what to expect from The Furnace. I wrote a first impression over at GOODREADS but I thought this book deserve an extended praise to raise the interest in a book which delivers hours of excellent entertainment. Or as I said:
The Furnace .... took me by storm.

As explained in the description the story starts nearly at the end of the story. In the supposed to be last hours in his life, investigator Lieutenant Kyle Tanner records the events of the past days.

Immediately I felt the heat from the sun, my pulse raised in fear of radiation and I lost contact to my surrounding.
Kyle Tanner is an experienced investigator with a lot of success. He is also analytical and has the right gut feeling. The way Kyle Tanner works reminded my of a famous detective from Victorian era ...... The energy harvester SOLEX One is the crime scene and all crew members are under suspicion. It is like an over dimensional locked room.

During the investigation Timothy S. Johnston delivers scientific stuff. He does it in an entertaining and believable way. Instead of bombarding the reader with tons of scientific terms, he let the scientists on board explain things to Kyle Tanner
and these explanations are the proof that the author definitely spent time for research.

The investigation itself is intricate due to the number of suspects, their relationship within the group, the opinions of the suspects about the government and society and the technological aspect of the crime.

Interrogation can be very boring and exhausting. Fortunately The Furnace shows the contrary. It does not take long and the reader starts guessing fuelled by new information on all areas.
I should not forget to tell you that Kyle Tanner's past which is revealed slowly has a certain impact especially on his private live.

The murder of more crew members boil and speed up the story and a love affair complicates Kyle Tanner's work. It is also the time we learn something new about him. For me it was like Kyle Tanner turns into a kind of John McClane, well-known from the Die Hard movies. It is the time when the detective story turns into a breathtaking, emotional and irresistible space action thriller.  Sometimes I nearly forgot to breathe.

I was quite happy that the end was different compared to the one I expected. Even the case is solved by then, there are several questions left unanswered which means stuff  for more books to come.

The Inevitable

 A crime has been committed. 
A famous investigator gets the order to find the killer. 
Sounds like a description I read one thousand times before. 
That is true. 

But that is also the point where the similarities to these stories end. The Furnace takes place in 2401 AD. The crime scene is SOLEX ONE, a research station orbiting the sun. The investigator is Lieutenant Kyle Tanner from CCF (= Confederated Combined Forces).

What starts as an usual investigation at an unusual place turns into much more.
Revenge, treason, conspiracy, scientific invention, a pinch of love, action, fleshed characters which develop and whom you will eagerly follow are the ingredients of The Furnace which took me by storm.

I have had a great and entertaining time with Kyle Tanner and other characters and all my guesses went wrong.

 Looking for a scifi crime which is more than a scifi crime then give The Furnace a try. I would like to see this story on a big screen. The good thing is there will be at least two more books starring Kyle Tanner. For more information about The Tanner Sequence series I recommend to visit the official site.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Edi's Weekend Wave #1447

Hello and welcome to issue #1447 of Edi's Weekend Wave.

Dear Readers,
finally I'm back - more or less. It is crazy how work keeps me busy. Beside that we have to take care on our sick tomcat..
Let me give you a short update.
My wife took our tomcat to the veterinarian twice in the past days. There seems to a sparkle of light. Now we know for sure that he has a problem with the heart, he is nearly deaf, he does not see well and he suffers from diabetes.
Next week there will be an ultrasonic testing of the internal organs in order to exclude more health problems. If there are no more other health problems then it is possible that he will live - how long nobody knows. Anyway with diabetes he needs daily injections and he needs special food.
We hope the best.
I really wanted to write  more reviews in 2014 than in 2013 but I failed. Nevertheless I work on improvements in this area for 2015.


Edi's Guidepost

The Lighthouse
News and information straight from the horse's mouth by Lighthouse keeper ediFanoB

  1. Reading progress 
  2. What to read in the remaining days of 2014
The latest report from our shelf shop net correspondent Bona
  1. New books on my shelf/reader or when one book leads to another 
Messages from the depths of the blogosphere by spheronaut Bona Fide
  1. Tiny Flip Books
  2. Sherlock Holmes exhibition
  3. The largest warship in the world in 1802
  4. 32-pounder
  5. One song two versions

Remote control junkie Fide and his zapping highlights
  1. The Homesman

The member of the house of quotes and a quote himself the Keeper of the minutes ( we call him Kotm) fished for you
  1. German proverbs, sayings and idiomsQuote related to animals

The Lighthouse
In the last 14 days I finished four books and started to reads two new books. I hope to find enough time to finish some more books until the end of 2014.

I finished

- Maschinenseele (pb April 2014 2009) [Paperback ISBN-13: 978-3867622042; Kindle Edition ASIN:  B00L2F7LRC] by Chris Schlicht.  
This is an awesome steampunk novel written in German by the fantastic Chris Schlicht.

- Floating Gold which is the first book in The Oliver Quintrell Trilogy (digital 2013) [Kindle ASIN: B00H5FJ0WM] by M. C. Muir (pen name of Margaret Muir).
I wrote on GOODREADS:
"I bought the complete Oliver Quintrell Trilogy. But as these are three books, I want to count them as three different books.

Therefore I will rate the first two books separately and the third book within the trilogy entry.

What shall I say? A naval fiction without pirates and naval battles. Instead a great mix of mystery, treasure hunt and naval fiction with a cast of interesting characters.

I enjoyed it a lot."

- Traitor's Blade (digital 2014) [Kindle ASIN: B00HEG6UGG] by Sebastien de Castell 
I wrote on GOODREADS:
 "This debut novel really impressed me.

This has been an emotional rollercoaster ride. Characters easily to follow, to adore and to hate. What an incredible swashbuckling, gritty, dark story full of action, intelligent conversation, twist and turns, revelations and emotions.

I'm totally keen to read the next book in the "GREYCOATS" series and hope it will be published soon!"

- TimeRiders: The Infinity Cage (2014) [ISBN-13: 978-0141337203] by by Alex Scarrow.
I wrote on GOODREADS:
"The last and final book in the series.
I read the book in one day.
After 300 pages there was still no hint how the story would end and I was near the edge of diappointment.
But the last 100 pages have been most satisfying.
There is even the possibility to return to the main characters one day.

Until then there is enough stuff to think about.

What a great time travel series with a worthy final!!"


- 253 pages in The Oliver Quintrell Trilogy (digital 2013) [Kindle ASIN: B00H5FJ0WM] by M. C. Muir (pen name of Margaret Muir).
Finished the first book. Excellent!

-125 pages in  Master & Commander (digital 2011) [Kindle ASIN: B00H5FJ0WM] by Patrick O'Brian.
I'm impressed. This book delivers tons of naval details which force me to use a dictionary quite often. Beside that I like the characters.
Nothing to add to my previous comment.

No progress

- 172 pages in  Malice (digital December 2012) [Kindle edition ASIN: B00AER8240] by John Gwynne.

- 230 pages in The Invention of Murder: How the Victorians Revelled in Death and Detection and Created Modern Crime (digital 2011) [ Kindle Edition ASIN: B004FPYX72] by Judith Flanders.

- 176 pages in Memories of Ice (pb, 2006; first published in 2000) [ISBN-13: 978-0765348807] by Steven Erikson

- 241 pages in the Amelia Peabody's Murder Mystery Omnibus (digital, pb, 2012) [Kindle Edition ASIN: B007PRZJAW] by Elizabeth Peters.

- 172 pages in the Emperor of Thorns (pb, August 2013) [ISBN-13: 978-0007439058] by Mark Lawrence,

 Enjoy your weekend ....


Dear readers, I'm the one to tell you about books - only books? What about novellas and other stuff? My name is Bona. I scour shelves, shops and the net for books. If you call me a book whore I would not gainsay you. But be aware I have my own, sometimes elusive taste.

New books on my shelf/reader or when one book leads to another

In the past two weeks I just one digital copy.
HMS Surprise (digital 2011) [Kindle ASIN: B00H5FJ0WM] by Patrick O'Brian which is the third book in the famous Aubrey-Maturin series.
"Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey-Maturin tales are widely acknowledged to be the greatest series of historical novels ever written.

H.M.S. Surprise follows the variable fortunes of Captain Jack Aubrey’s career in Nelson’s navy as he attempts to hold his ground against admirals, colleagues and the enemy, accepting a mission to convey a British ambassador to the East Indies. The voyage takes him and his friend Stephen Maturin to the strange sights and smells of the Indian sub-continent, and through the archipelago of spice islands where the French have a near-overwhelming superiority.

Rarely has a novel managed to convey more vividly the fragility of a sailing ship in a wild sea. Rarely has a historical novelist combined action and lyricism of style in the way that O’ Brian does. His superb sense of place, brilliant characterisation, and a vigour and joy of writing lift O’Brian above any but the most exalted of comparisons." [Source]
Beside that I received today the paperback edition of an unproofed review copy of Dragon of the Stars (7th April 2015) [ISBN-13: 978-1939844067] by Alex J. Cavanaugh.
Dear Alex I thank you so much!!
"The ship of legends…
The future is set for Lt. Commander Aden Pendar, son of a Hyrathian Duke. He’s poised to secure his own command and marriage to the queen’s daughter. He’ll stop at nothing to achieve his goals.
But when the Alliance denies Hyrath’s claim on the planet of Kavil and declares war on their world, Aden finds his plans in disarray. Entrenched in battle and told he won’t make captain, Aden’s world begins to collapse. How will he salvage his career and future during Hyrath’s darkest hour?
One chance remains–the Dragon. Lost many years prior, the legendary ship’s unique weapon is Hyrath’s only hope. Can Aden find the Dragon, save his people, and prove he’s capable of commanding his own ship?" [Source]
My review of  Dragon of the Stars will be available on 1st of March 2015. Furthermore I will be part of the blog tour for the book.

No more today, see you next week ......


Hey, I'm Bona Fide. I just came back from my last foray through the blogosphere. What can you expect from me? I tell you: Everything from Art to Fart as long as there is any faint connection to books. And here is some honey from the beehive blogosphere...

Tiny Flip Books
In case you like tiny flip books then you must visit following post over at the WebUrbanist:

Sherlock Holmes exhibition
Unfortunately I do not have any opportunity to visit London until 12 April 2015 which is a bit sad because I would like to visit the Sherlock Holmes exhibition at the Museam of London. Therefore I'm happy when I can at least read reports from people who visited the exhibition. Here is one I found over at The Cat's Meat Shop:

The largest warship in the world in 1802
A sailing vessel with a crew of 1050 is nearly beyond my imagination. Where did the store all the food and water? How did they sleep?
Margaret Muir author of The Oliver Quintrell Trilogy (digital 2013) [Kindle ASIN: B00H5FJ0WM] put together a lot of information about the Santísima Trinidad. Have a look at

Ship smasher
Since I started to read naval fiction I have one more dream: To visit the HMS Victory in Portsmouth. Until my dream willconme true, I enjoy post like the following one by authorAntoine Vanner over at is informative blog Dawlish Chronicles:

One song two versions
I admit I like the Game Of Thrones Theme Song a lot. Since the start of the series more and more versions of the song pop up. Today I want to share with you the following two versions I like too.
The first one may a be a bit unusual because it is polayed ona water jug, pans and glasses but it sounds good.

The second version shows how powerful cellos are.

That's it for today. Come back next week for more ......


Hey, it's me Fide. I'm a remote control professional. I'm that fast that I can watch two movies at the same time.

Today my wife and I were talking about which movies we woild like to see in cinema in December 2014.
On top of the list is The Hobbit The Battle of the Five Armies followed by Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb starring the unforgettable Robin Williams.

Then I have had a look at the upcoming movies in December 2014 and I found one more most interesting film starring Tommy Lee Jones, and Hilary Swank. I talk about The Homesman, an American perio dram set in the 1850' see. I got hooked by the trailer. For me it seems that Tommy Lee Jones is getting better and better the older he gets.

That's all for today. See you next time....


I 'm the Keeper of the minutes. But I don't mind when you call me Kotm. No, no. I don't explain to you how to pronounce.

Which animals do you like?  ...............

"I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals.

Winston Churchill, British politician, 1874 - 1965

Monday, November 17, 2014

Again no Weekend Wave

Dear Readers,

as you have recognised in the meantime, there was no Weekend Wave last weekend.
I'm sorry for that.

Last week has not been a pleasant one.

Furthermore our 15 years old tomcat has a lot of health problems. This week we will face the question if life is still worth for him or if we have to decide to euthanize him.

Based on that you may understand that was and I'm still  not in the right mood to write a post.


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