Monday, May 31, 2010

Edi's Lighthouse Ledger: Read in May - Plan for June 2010

Dear readers,
last day of May today. Time to review what I read this month and what I plan for June.
May has been a mixed month. I read more than I expected and I posted less - especially reviews - than I wanted.
In the end it all depends on my job. My schedule depends on how many hours I have to spend for work and how exhausting these hours are.
Anyway June will be an interesting month:
- My wife and I will visit a medieval fair
- 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP in South Africa
- Super Mario Galaxy 2; after I long time I will again play a video game
- Tons of books to read
- More than a dozen reviews to write

Anyway the most important thing is to enjoy life.

And now I come back to the main topic of this post.


Books read in May 2010
I read in sum seven books, finished another two remaining from May and started a new one!


Books remaining from April and finished

Beat the Reaper (2009)
[ISBN-13: 978-0316073769], by Josh Bazell
A mix of Dexter, ER, Gray's Anatomy, House MD, Sopranos, The Godfather.
Absolutely entertaining!
Review in progress ...


Silver (January 2010, 432 p.)
[ISBN-13: 978-1935142058] by Steven Savile.
Go, Buy, Read and Enjoy an intelligent, peppered with action, gripping roller coaster thriller full of twists, turns and surprises, populated with heroes who are more 3D than Avatar and who deserve your esteem and sympathy.
Read my review


Books finished in May 2010

City of Ruin (June 2010, 400 p.)
[ISBN-13: 978-0230712591], by Mark Charan Newton
This book is definitely one of the fantasy highlights in 2010! Read my review

Thomas Riley (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1590807002]by Nick Valentino
Nick's debut novel is straight and steamy all age book. Review in progress ...

Burning Skies (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-0553385427] by David J. Williams
A firework of action, betrayal and technology. Special review in progress ...

The Gaslight Dogs (April 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0316021791] by Karin Lowachee
It was not the book I expected after reading the blurb. But under the premise that it is the first book of a series and you let yourself in the story without reservations you get an interesting read. Entertaining but definitely no candidate for the fantasy book of the year.


Wintercraft (May 13th, 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0755370962] by Jenna Burtenshaw
Wintercraft is young, fresh fantasy with a trace of darkness, packed with emotion and action. Read it, don't eat it! Don't stay away, devour is okay!
Read my review

Shadow Prowler (Feruary 2010, 396 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-0765324030] by Alexey Pehov
I read the book despite all the mixed reviews and I'm glad I did it. I really liked this peace of traditional fantasy. It differs a lot from the books I read this year. Review in progress ...

The Strange Affair of Spring-Heeled Jack by Mark Hodder
(Snowbooks, UK, April 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1906727208]
(Pyr, US, September 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1616142407]
For details read Edi's Lighthouse Chatter: Burton & Swinburne and Spring-Heeled Jack
What a debut!!! For me it is definitely one of the top debuts in 2010. Highly recommended. Review in progress ...

Books started to read in May 2010

Black Hills (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0316072656] by Dan Simmons
I read 15 pages so far. Will continue to read in June


Planned Reads in June 2010
Top of the list are two books I wanted to read in May. I started the first one. The second one is a "virgin" from reading point of view. I list the books in the reading order. Of course there is an exception. After a long, long time
I will read an anthology: Swords & Dark Magic. The plan is to read the book during the whole month and review two stories at a time. And I want to read a trilogy back to back. here we go:

So far I read two Dan Simmons novels in my life: Terror (2008) [ISBN-13: 978-3453406131] and Drood (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-1847249326]. Both are excellent books - read my review of Drood. I bought the next novel Black Hills (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0316072656] without hesitation.
"When Paha Sapa, a young Sioux warrior, "counts coup" on General George Armstrong Custer as Custer lies dying on the battlefield at the Little Bighorn, the legendary general's ghost enters him - and his voice will speak to him for the rest of his event-filled life.
Seamlessly weaving together the stories of Paha Sapa, Custer, and the American West, Dan Simmons depicts a tumultuous time in the history of both Native and white Americans. Haunted by Custer's ghost, and also by his ability to see into the memories and futures of legendary men like Sioux war-chief Crazy Horse, Paha Sapa's long life is driven by a dramatic vision he experienced as a boy in his people's sacred Black Hills. In August of 1936, a dynamite worker on the massive Mount Rushmore project, Paha Sapa plans to silence his ghost forever and reclaim his people's legacy-on the very day FDR comes to Mount Rushmore to dedicate the Jefferson face." [Source]
It is on my shelf since two months and now the time has come to read it. So far I read 15 pages. But I'm not sure whether to write a review or not. The reason is quite simple: I read the ultimate Black Hills review. Go and read Black Hills review over at Kamvision. I don't need to praise this review more because it tells its own tale.....

I have been so impressed by The Sweet Smell of Decay that I ordered the second book in the series in advance.
I received the copy and I can't wait to read it. Paul Lawrence's writing is so alluring......

A Plague of Sinners (May 2010, 448 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-1905636914], by Paul Lawrence
"July 1665. The great plague rages rampant outside London’s city walls. Harry Lytle makes a welcome return after his trials and tribulations in The Sweet Smell of Decay to investigate the murder of the Earl of St Albans. A grisly dinner-table death starts Harry off on the trail, and it’s not long before his familiar accomplice, Dowling the butcher, joins him on the case. Their master, Lord Arlington, head of the King’s intelligence service, tasks them with uncovering the name and motive of the Earl’s murderer. But there will be plenty more deaths and scrapes for Harry before the name is revealed."


There are several reasons why I the following book made it to my list:
Reason one, reason two, reason three, reason four, reason five, reason six. I did not need more. And you?
This is the book I'm talking about: Kraken (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0333989517] by China Miéville.
"The Natural History Museum's prize exhibit - a giant squid - suddenly disappears. This audacious theft leads Clem, the research scientist who has recently finished preserving the exhibit, into a dark urban underworld of warring cults and surreal magic. It seems that for some, the squid represents a god and should be worshiped as such. Clem gradually comes to realise that someone may be attempting to use the squid to trigger an apocalypse. And so it is now up to him and a renegade squid-worshiper named Dean to find a way of stopping the destruction of the world as they know it whilst themselves surviving the all out-gang warfare that they have unwittingly been drawn into..." [Source]

I want to read more science fiction in 2010. Therefore I added following book to my reading list:
The Machinery of Light (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0553385434] by David J. Williams. It is the final one in the Autumn Rain trilogy.
"With The Machinery of Light, David J. Williams completes his furiously paced, stunningly imagined trilogy - a work of vision, beauty, and pulse-pounding futuristic action.

September 26, 2110. 10:22 GMT. Following the assassination of the American president, the generals who have seized power initiate World War Three, launching a surprise attack against the Eurasian Coalition's forces throughout the Earth-Moon system. Across the orbits, tens of thousands of particle beams and lasers blast away at one another. The goal: crush the other side's weaponry, paving the way for nuclear bombardment of the cities.
As inferno becomes Armageddon, the rogue commando unit Autumn Rain embarks on one last run. Matthew Sinclair, an imprisoned spymaster, plots his escape. And his former protégé Claire Haskell, capable of hacking into both nets and minds, is realizing that all her powers may merely be playing into Sinclair's plans. For even as Claire evades the soldiers of East and West amid carnage in the lunar tunnels, the surviving members of the Rain converge upon the Moon, one step ahead of the Eurasian fleets but one step behind the mastermind who created Autumn Rain - and his terrible final secret." [Source]

This month I want to read four K. J. Parker books. The first one will be The Folding Knife (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-978-1857236101]. I admire K. J. Parker's writing. Beyond my admiration I deliver you two good reasons why you should read The Folding Knife too. The Folding Knife by K. J. Parker (reviewed Liviu Suciu)
Blood of the muse: The Folding Knife by K. J. Parker
"Basso the Magnificent. Basso the Great. Basso the Wise. Basso the Murderer. The First Citizen of the Vesani Republic is an extraordinary man. He is ruthless, cunning and, above all, lucky. He brings wealth, power and prestige to his people. But with power comes unwanted attention, and Basso must defend his nation and himself from threats foreign and domestic. In a lifetime of crucial decisions, he's only ever made one mistake. One mistake, though, can be enough." [Source]






The next book is from the well known author Kevin J. Anderson. First published in 2009, I own a paperback copy of The Edge of the World (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0316004190] which is the first book in the Terra Incognita series.
"Terra Incognita - the blank spaces on the map, past the edge of the known world only by the words here be monsters.
Two nations at war, fighting for dominion over the world, pin their last hopes of ultimate victory on finding a land out of legend.
Each will send its ships to brave the untamed waters, wild storms, sea serpents, and darker dangers unseen by any man. It is a perilous undertaking, but there will always be the impetuous, the brave, and the mad, willing to leave their homes to explore unknown. Even unto the edge of the world ..." [Back of the book]

The blurb promises a lot. And I can't wait to discover the blank spaces on the map.


The whole Scavenger series by K. J. Parker


Shadow (2001)
[ISBN-13: 978-1841491059]

Pattern
(2002)
[ISBN-13: 978-1841491820]

Memory (2003)
[ISBN-13: 978-1841491721]
"A man wakes in the wilderness, amid scattered corpses and inquisitive crows. He has no memory of who he is or how he came to be there. The only clues to his former existence lie in his apparent skill with a sword and the fragmented dreams that permeate his sleep." [Source]

I admire K. J. Parker since I read and reviewed The Colours in the Steel (1998) [ISBN-13: 978-978-1857236101], the first book in the Fencer trilogy. But this time I will read the complete series in a row.


Normally I'm not so keen to read short stories. But I want to give following anthology a try:
Swords & Dark Magic (July 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0061723810], edited by Jonathan Strahan and Lou Anders.
"Swords & Dark Magic is the most important new fantasy anthology to be published this decade. Featuring new stories from the bestselling and brightest writers working in the genre, including: New York Times bestselling authors Scott Lynch and Garth Nix; genre greats Michael Moorcock (with an all-new Elric novella), Michael Shea (with a fully authorized new Cugel the Clever adventure), Robert Silverberg (with an all-new Majipoor tale), Glen Cook (with an all-new Black Company story), Gene Wolfe, and C. J. Cherryh; and hot new writers who've been re-inventing swords and sorcery like Steven Erikson, Joe Abercrombie, Tim Lebbon, and many more." [Back of the book]

I know, I know, again ten books. But I'm so keen to read ... to play Super Mario Galaxy 2 ... and much,much more. June will be definitely a month with less sleep.

ENJOY LIFE!


Sunday, May 30, 2010

Edi's Spotlight: Silver by Steven Savile

This is my second try to write and post this review. On Friday night I tried it the first time. I saved every progress. After clicking the Publish Post button my session crashed. When I returned to my post it has been corrupted. Most of the text missing. Parts of the text displaced. Therefore I could not post it on Friday as expected.

Predicament: The more I read the less I review. Within this week I found some time for Twitter. Hagelrat asked me whether I read and liked Silver (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1935142058] by Steven Savile on Twitter. I could understand her questions very well. I won a signed ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) of Silver, the first book in the Ogmios Team Adventure series, over at UN:BOUND. The truth: I read and enjoyed the book but did not review it so far which leads back to the beginning - Predicament.
Today, after another exhausting week, after one hour cycling at the gym, after dinner AND before falling asleep, I thought it would be a nice start in the weekend to review Silver.

"Sometimes the truth is anything but honest.

Sometimes the stories everyone knows by heart are lies.

Sometimes lies are all we have left.


Two thousand years ago, thirty silver Tyrian shekels were paid to secure the most infamous betrayal of all time. Melted down by the grandsons of Judas Iscariot, Menahem and Eleazar ben Jair, in the dark heart of the Sicarii fortress, Masada, the silver was re-forged as a dagger. When the Sicarii zealots committed mass suicide in AD73 the dagger of Iscariot and the truth of his sacrifice were lost. Until now.

A religious cult calling itself the Disciples of Judas has risen in the Middle East. Its influence is pernicious, its reach long. In thirteen cities across Europe thirteen people martyr themselves in the name of Judas, promising forty days and forty nights of terror. They twist the words of ancient prophecies to drive home the fear. On the last day, they promise, faith will fall. Everything you believe in will be proved wrong. Everything you hold true will fail.

Day by day the West wakes to increasingly more harrowing acts of terror. Fear cripples the capitals of Europe, who will be the next to fall? London? Rome? Berlin?

In a race against time – and prophecy – believing the terrorists intend to assassinate the Pope as part of their plan to bring down the Catholic Church, Sir Charles Wyndham’s team of combat specialists, codename Ogmios, tracks a labyrinthine course through truth, shades of truth and outright lies that takes them from the backstreets of London to the shadow of Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin all the way into the heart of the Holy See itself.

Forty days and forty nights of fear. And today is day one."

You should know that I never read a Dan Brown book and I never saw one of the movies. And why did I enter the giveaway? That's because Hagelrat wrote in her review:
"If you liked The Da Vinci Code this will blow your socks off, if you thought the Da Vinci Code was rubbish then this is the perfect antidote and yeah, it's probably blasphemy if you are of a remotely Catholic persuasion. Silver, to borrow from Koni, wakes you up at four am and drags you out of bed naked and screaming." (Koni = Konstantin Khavin, former KGB agent)
Even you are not familiar with the bible I assume you have heard about Judas's betrayal of Jesus.Thirty silver pieces and a kiss on cheek set in motion events which concluded in the crucification of Jesus.
Jesus became the beloved Messiah, the Redeemer of mankind and Judas Iscariot became the most known betrayer in Christian world. And now switch their roles. Judas is the real Messiah and the enunciator of Christianity kept it secret.
Silver is based on this scenario.

As you could read in the blurb Silver is the story of the fight between religious terrorists and the so called Ogmios Team (a non official institution), founded and led by Sir Charles Wyndham. That lead us directly to one of the strong points of the novel: Characterization

The enemies, the victims, the team members (Orla Nyrén, Noah Larkin, Ronan Frost, Jude Lethe and Konstantin Khavin) and their contacts, they all come to life due to Steven Savile's spot-on characterizations. He delivers detailed background stories, personalities, skills, inner thoughts and more. The characters are more 3D than Avatar.
And Steven does the same with his detailed description of the scenery. Which means the reader can visualize the different locations with a minimum of effort. The world is similar to our nowadays world. Most part of the story takes place in Europe and switches several times between past and present. With every look into the past Steven Savile enlightens more background information.

The story itself is full of twists and turns and surprises. Steven Savile is a story teller par excellence. His prose is strong, intense and every time perfectly adapted to the described situation. You feel the pain of the victims to the very marrow of your bones. The races against time accelerate your heartbeat. The humor - yes there are traces of humor in the book - makes you laugh and there also scenes full of sadness which bring tears to your eyes. The description of the terrorist actions is appalling real.

Silver is the first book in a series. It comes to a certain end but leaves several open questions behind. At the end of the story you will be as shaken to the core as the main characters.

Finally you have to face the question: Is religion - any religion - good for mankind?


As I wrote before I don't know any book by Dan Brown. There is no reason to talk about Dan Brown after reading the excellent Silver by Steven Savile. I hope and wish that Steven Savile will sell as many copies as Dan Brown.

Go, Buy, Read and Enjoy an intelligent, peppered with action, gripping roller coaster thriller full of twists, turns and surprises, populated with heroes who are more 3D than Avatar and who deserve your esteem and sympathy.

I can't wait to read Gold, the sequel to Silver. I imploringly hope that it will not take too much time write and publish it.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Edi's Weekend Wave #22

Hello and welcome to issue #22 of Edi's Weekend Wave. End of May is near and the end of two books is near.
This week I could not spend much time for searching interesting topics. Next week will be better because I have to work from Monday to Wednesday. I'm happy that I could manage to write and post this issue. Even it is shorter than usual. I'm full of plans but I fail miserably with realization. This is sad and doesn't make me happy. Every morning of and every evening I face myself in the mirror and say: "Stop wailing! You have a job, you have a wonderful family, you find time to read and to go to gym. Sooner or later you will find time to write all the outstanding reviews. The more pressure you put on you the longer it will take to write them. Enjoy life!" And now enjoy reading ...


Edi's Guidepost

The Lighthouse
News and information straight from the horse's mouth by Lighthouse keeper ediFanoB
  1. My Rifle Books, My Pony Blog and Me
  2. Words I like
Books
The latest report from our shelf shop net correspondent Bona
  1. Books received this week
Blogosphere
Messages from the depths of the blogosphere by spheronaut Bona Fide
  1. Debut Graduate ....
  2. Mentatjack's giveaway: The Machinery of Light by David J. Williams
  3. Summer, Sun, Beach, Sand Castles
Movies
Remote control junkie Fide and his zapping highlights
  1. No movies but a video game
Quotes
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 idioms Round . . . . .

The Lighthouse

Doy you know My Rifle, My Pony and Me? It is the title of a song performed by Dean Martin and Ricky Nelson in the famous western Rio Bravo starring the unforgettable John Wayne. Unbelievable, the movie hit the cinemas in the same year I was born. Before I continue writing listen to the song:

The original lyrics:
My Rifle Pony and Me

Sun is sinking in the west
The cattle go down to the stream
The redwing settles in the nest
It's time for a cowboy to dream

Purple light in the canyon
that is where I long to be
With my three good companions
just my rifle pony and me

Gonna hang my sombrero
on the limb of a tree
Coming home sweet my darling
just my rifle pony and me

Whippoorwill in the willow
sings a sweet melody
Riding to Amarillo
just my rifle pony and me

No more cows to be ropin'
No more strays will I see
'round the bend shell be waitin
For my rifle pony and me
For my rifle my pony and me
[Source]

And this is my version of the song

Sun is sinking in the west
The words go down to the stream
The review settles on the desk
It's time for a reader to dream

Neon light in the book case
that is where I long to be
With my three good companions
just my book blog and me

Move my mousePut more books
Around my google reader
Coming home sweet my darling
just my book blog and me

Countless books on my pile
wait for reading
while I try to decide
just my book blog and me

Lot more books wait for buyin
Lot more books want to be read
'round the corner they are waitin'
For just my book blog and me
For just my book blog and me

I must admit that sometimes I feel like the lonely reader and/or blogger. Alone with my books and my blog. ediFanoB without books is like a cowboy without rifle and horse.

You may know or you easily detected that English is not my first language. I like English and I fancy old or unusal words. It is also interesting to see how people react when you use these kind of words - especially when you communicate with people for whom English is the first language.
This week I discovered following word which was new to me: GOBBLEDYGOOK It was used in a book I read. Do you know what it means? I didn't. I had to use google. This is the Wikipedia explanation:
"Gobbledygook or gobbledegook (sometimes gobbledegoo, gobbledeegook or other forms is any text containing jargon or especially convoluted English that results in it being excessively hard to understand or even incomprehensible."
I like to get examples. And I really found a Gobbledygook generator!! Visit the site and click on Generate some gobbledygook. I did and this is the result:
"Our exploratory research points to responsive modular paradigm shifts."
Maybe I can use this site as an inspiration for my reviews.
Like "The author's exploratory research points to responsive modular paradigm shifts. The story needs a more blue-sky approach to parallel modular consulting."
Sounds very professional to me. Will somebody recognize the obvious absurdity?.

On Monday I will post about my reading progress and the plan for June.

Books

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.

This week we received four books which we ordered in advance.

The first one is the fifth book in the Nightrunners series: The White Road (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0553590098] by Lynn Flewelling.
"Dissolute nobles, master spies, and the unlikeliest of heroes, Alec and Seregil have survived exile, treachery, and black magic. But the road that lies ahead is the most hazardous they've ever traveled. For with enemies on all sides, they must walk a narrow path between good and evil where one misstep might be their last.
Having escaped death and slavery in Plenimar, Alec and Seregil want nothing more than to go back to their nightrunning life in Rhíminee. Instead they find themselves saddled with Sebrahn, a strange, alchemically created creature - the prophesied 'child of no woman.' Its moon-white skin and frightening powers make Sebrahn a danger to all whom Alec and Seregil come into contact with, leaving them no choice but to learn more about Sebrahn's true nature.
With the help of trusted friends and Seregil's clan, the duo set out to discover the truth about this living homunculus - a journey that can lead only to danger or death. For Seregil's old nemesis Ulan í Sathil of Virèsse and Alec's own long-lost kin are after them, intent on possessing both Alec and Sebrahn. On the run and hunted, Alec and his comrades must fight against time to accomplish their most personal mission ever." [Source]
I read the first two books in the series some years ago and as far as I remember I liked them a lot.

The next one is the paperback of a steampunk novel which has been published first in 2010. Leviathan (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1847386748] by Scott Westerfeld.
"It is the cusp of World War I, and all the European powers are arming up. The Austro-Hungarians and Germans have their Clankers, steam-driven iron machines loaded with guns and ammunition. The British Darwinists employ fabricated animals as their weaponry. Their Leviathan is a whale airship, and the most masterful beast in the British fleet.
Aleksandar Ferdinand, prince of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, is on the run. His own people have turned on him. His title is worthless. All he has is a battle-torn Stormwalker and a loyal crew of men.
Deryn Sharp is a commoner, a girl disguised as a boy in the British Air Service. She's a brilliant airman. But her secret is in constant danger of being discovered.
With the Great War brewing, Alek's and Deryn's paths cross in the most unexpected way...taking them both aboard the Leviathan on a fantastical, around-the-world adventure. One that will change both their lives forever." [Source]
As far as I remember there has been some hype around this book. Now I can build up my own mind.
And additionally I show you the book trailer:


I bought the next book based on Liviu Suciu's review. Grand Central Arena (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1439133552] by Ryk E. Spoor. Liviu classified it as a
" "space opera" in the grand old tradition - "costume" aliens, heroic and plucky humans - but with modern sensibilities and awareness of current speculations in cutting edge physics."
"It was supposed to be a simple t est flight, one that pilot Ariane Austin was on only as a last-ditch backup; intelligent, superhumanly fast automation would handle the test activation and flight of humanity's first faster-than-light vessel. But when the Sandrisson Drive activated, every automated system crashed, the nuclear reactor itself shut down, and only the reflexes and training of a racing pilot saved the test vessel Holy Grail from crashing into the impossible wall that had appeared before them, a wall which is just part of a monstrous enclosure surrounding a space twenty thousand kilometers across. With all artifical intelligences inert and their reactor dead, they had to find some other source of power to reactivate the Sandrisson Drive and-hopefully-take them home.
And that was only the beginning. As Ariane, Dr. Simon Sandrisson, darkly enigmatic power engineer Marc C. DuQuesne, and the rest of the Holy Grail's crew explore the immense artifact, they discover that they are not alone; they have entered a place the alien inhabitants call "The Arena", and there is no way out without joinging one of the alien factions... or winnig recognition as a faction in their own right, playing by the Arena's rules-and by the Arena's rules, one failed challenge could mean death or worse-perhaps for the entire human race.
Surrounded by aliens factions, each with its own secret plans and motivations, some wielding powers so strange as to be magical, Ariane sets out to beat the Arena at its own game. With DuQuesne's strategies, Sandrisson's genius, and her own unyielding determination, she's going to bring the Holy Grail home-even if she has to beat every faction in the Arena to do it!" [Source]

The last book for this week is the final one in the Autumn Rain trilogy. And this will not be the last time that I mention The Machinery of Light (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0553385434] by David J. Williams.
"With The Machinery of Light, David J. Williams completes his furiously paced, stunningly imagined trilogy - a work of vision, beauty, and pulse-pounding futuristic action.

September 26, 2110. 10:22 GMT. Following the assassination of the American president, the generals who have seized power initiate World War Three, launching a surprise attack against the Eurasian Coalition's forces throughout the Earth-Moon system. Across the orbits, tens of thousands of particle beams and lasers blast away at one another. The goal: crush the other side's weaponry, paving the way for nuclear bombardment of the cities.
As inferno becomes Armageddon, the rogue commando unit Autumn Rain embarks on one last run. Matthew Sinclair, an imprisoned spymaster, plots his escape. And his former protégé Claire Haskell, capable of hacking into both nets and minds, is realizing that all her powers may merely be playing into Sinclair's plans. For even as Claire evades the soldiers of East and West amid carnage in the lunar tunnels, the surviving members of the Rain converge upon the Moon, one step ahead of the Eurasian fleets but one step behind the mastermind who created Autumn Rain - and his terrible final secret." [Source]


No more today, I'm enervated. So many problems writing this post ......
See you next week ......

Blogosphere

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...

Once again I have to mention Tia Nevitt, the mastermind behind Debut & Reviews. This week she posted a guest post by David J. Williams, the author of the Autumn Rain trilogy which is interesting for authors, reviewers and readers. Don't miss to read Debut Graduate: David Williams on Completing a Trilogy
This was the second time I mentioned David J. Williams and I will do it a third time.

And this is the third time. You can win a signed copy of The Machinery of Light.
This is the THE MACHINERY OF LIGHT trailer from Claire Haskell on Vimeo.


Click THREE signed copies of Machinery of Light by David J. Williams and follow the rules to win. Thanks to Mentatjack.

Do you like to build sand castles on the beach? I did it in former times. But my results have not had any similarity with nowadays sand sculptures.
I highly recommend to have a look at following post: 37 Sand Sculptures that Make Your Castle Look Sad
After watching these awesome sculptures you want to know more about how to build these kinds of sculptures?
Then you should have a look at How to Build a Sand Castle or for more professional ambitions Sand Castle Central.

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

Movies

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.
But don't worry. All the stuff I present to you will be shown at normal speed.

I know that this is no movie trailer but I'm a big fan of Super Mario Galaxy and this video review from IGN explain perfectly why I must have Super Mario Galaxy 2. And I will get it. I could convince my wife to order it in advance. Now I wait impatiently...

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

Quotes

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.
11th of July 2010. Maybe a special for you? Anyway a special day for us. It is the release date of Super Mario Galaxy 2 in Germany AND the start of the 2010 Fifa World Coup in South Africa. What do they have in common? It is quite simple. Something round is most important for both: Planets and ball.
Conclusion: a small collection of "round" quotes would be nice. By the way, the last one os one of my favorite qoutes. Here we go .....

"Computer games don't affect kids, I mean if Pac Man affected us as kids, we'd all be running around in darkened rooms, munching pills and listening to repetitive music.
Marcus Brigstocke


"A round man cannot be expected to fit in a square hole right away. He must have time to modify his shape.
Mark Twain, US humorist, novelist, short story author, & wit (1835 - 1910)


"You can't choose up sides on a round world.
Wayne Dyer, American motivational Speaker and Author of self-help best selling books (1940 - )


"A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.
H. L. Mencken, US editor (1880 - 1956)


"The church says the earth is flat, but I know that it is round, for I have seen the shadow on the moon, and I have more faith in a shadow than in the church
Ferdinand Magellan, Portuguese Navigator and Explorer (1480-1521)


"Still round the corner there may wait,
A new road or a secret gate.

J. R. R. Tolkien, British scholar & fantasy novelist (1892 - 1973)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Edi's Spotlight: City of Ruin by Mark Charan Newton

Hello this is ediFanoB. I silenced the rest of my brain inhabitants (Bona, Fide, Bona Fide and Kotm) for this review.
It is really exhausting for me to read books in PDF format. But in some cases I make exceptions. And in following case it has been more than worth to read the PDF.
Only one week to go until the publishing date of the second book in the Legends of the Red Sun saga by Mark Charan Newton. Mark has been so kind to provide me a PDF copy of City of Ruin (June 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0230712591].
Short Description
"Viliren: a city of sin that is being torn apart from the inside. Hybrid creatures shamble through shadows and barely human gangs fight turf wars for control of the streets.
Amidst this chaos, Commander Brynd Adaol, commander of the Night Guard, must plan the defence of Viliren against a race that has broken through from some other realm and already slaughtered hundreds of thousands of the Empire's people.

When a Night Guard soldier goes missing, Brynd requests help from the recently arrived Inquisitor Jeryd. He discovers this is not the only disappearance the streets of Villiren. It seems that a serial killer of the most horrific kind is on the loose, taking hundreds of people from their own homes. A killer that cannot possibly be human.

The entire population of Villiren must unite to face an impossible surge of violent and unnatural enemies or the city will fall.

But how can anyone save a city that is already a ruin?" [Source]
Welcome back to the second visit of a town under the Red Sun. This time we head more north. It is getting colder and it snows more often.

After the events in Villjamur

--- EXCUSE me, you didn't read Nights of Villjamur ? Why? You never read a fantasy book before? OK. That is the only apology I accept. Anyway you are lucky because the paperback of Nights of Villjamur (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0330461665] will be published too next week. Buy both books and say good bye for some days ---

we enter now the city of Villiren. Compared to Villjamur, Villiren is not that dominant. Also the atmosphere is different.
"And I used to think those nights in Villjamur were full of freak shows, Jeryd thought. This place is twice as bad."
A lot of people don't really care what is going on. They try to survive.
"When someone has no future, they look in the other direction."
Beside this mass we have upper-class, soldiers, do-gooder and the underbelly. Each of them has their own motives.

A new town means new people. Fortunately there are some people who left Villjamur and travelled to Villiren.
We meet again two main characters from Villjamur: Night Guard Commander Brynd Lathraea and Investigator Jeryd with his wife Marysa. Brynd has been commanded to prepare Villiren against an invasion. Investigator Jeryd should take care of the increasing violence in the city. Of course we meet new characters like Mallum, a big number of the underbelly, his wife Beami, who experiments with relics. Bellis, Abaris and Ramon from the Order of the Grey Hair , who have some knowledge about human fear and spiders. Not to forget the do-gooder with their sublime motives and some more.
The stories of these people are interwoven like a spiderweb. They cross their ways. They change from fiend to friend and vice versa.

Beside the plot lines in the city we follow a group of people- Rika, Eir, Randur and Denlin - who fled from Villjamur and now are on their way to Villiren. They meet Artemisia, seven foot tall, black hair, pale blue skin and eyes like charcoal......

One important thing for me is that Mark presents several main characters who are believable and lovable - I must say I enjoyed especially the darker ones - and he does something which you do not find that often: You are not sure whether which characters will survive or not. And as in Villjamur Mark shows his talent to make alive his "grey" characters and the world they inhabit.

The writing style fits perfectly to the pace, complexity and atmosphere of the story.

City of Ruin is that good, you can read it even as a stand alone book. On the other hand Mark delivers more information about the world, answers questions and leave us with new ones.

City of Ruin is far more than a fantasy story. It contains obvious traces of crime, mystery, horror and even a whiff of urban fantasy. You get a lot of action, fair amount of military action, crossing plot lines, intrigues, superstition, betrayal, secrets and surprises.

At the end of a review I try to summarize my impressions in a few words. You know things like stunning, awesome, gripping, intriguing, amazing, gorgeous and so on. To be honest the all apply in this case.
But this time I want to be simple and unpretentious.

City of Ruin
is definitely one of the fantasy highlights in 2010

And what should you do when you read a sentence like the above one:
Buy Read Enjoy

Attention, Attention, Attention: Don't read the book in dark and old houses if you are afraid of spiders....

Let me finish my review with the very first sentence of the book which gives you a hint of what to expect:
"It entered the deep night, a spider reaching taller than a soldier."

Monday, May 24, 2010

Edi's Lighthouse Chatter: Launch of The Storm Guardians by Stephen Zimmer

In case you don't know, I stay in contact with author Stephen Zimmer, the author of Crown of Vengeance (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-0982565612] and The Exodus Gate (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-0615267470]. For more information read my reviews:
Crown of Vengeance review, The Exodus Gate review.

So it is a pleasure for me to post following announcement from Seventh Star Press. But this is not only the official text. Fortunately Stephen Zimmer provided me with the cover and some of the illustrations which I added to the text by permission from Stephen. I didn't like everything in The Exodus Gate . But it seems that The Storm Guardians is more after my fancy. I will definitely read and review The Storm Guardians.

Stephen Zimmer’s The Storm Guardians, Book Two of the Rising Dawn Saga,
Set For Launch at Hypericon

Seventh Star Press will be launching Stephen Zimmer’s second Rising Dawn
Saga novel, The Storm Guardians, at the Hypericon science fiction and
fantasy convention in Nashville, TN, taking place from June 4-6, 2010.

Book two in the epic urban fantasy series, the release reflects the commitment of Seventh Star Press to have a new title out each year in the Rising Dawn Saga. The Storm Guardians follows the events and characters introduced in The Exodus Gate, and is an installment full of action and
intrigue set in a parallel world very similar to Earth.

With a multi-threaded style that focuses on a diverse range of characters, the novel appeals to readers of epic and urban fantasy alike. The danger rises and the stakes grow throughout all of the story threads in The Storm Guardians: A massive battle looms in the spirit realms, as the Fallen Avatar Beleth's legions pour into the Middle Lands. Babylon Technologies
prepares to unveil its greatest invention, a technology that will impact every living being on the face of the world. The shape-shifting An-Ki find themselves in grave peril, as the Night Hunt resumes once again. A small group of high school students make an incredible discovery, even as tensions swirl in a small town over a law enforcement deadlock that causes a sheriff to question his own part in the course of events. The Convergence continues its steadfast march towards a global legal and economic order, using all means at its disposal. The question is: Who
will be the guardians against the storm?

The Rising Dawn Saga is just one of two active fantasy series by Stephen Zimmer, whose epic medieval Fires in Eden series was set in motion with the release of Crown of Vengeance, in November of 2009. The second book
in the Fires in Eden series is slated for winter of 2010.

Amanda DeBord, chief editor at Seventh Star Press, and who was the editor for Zimmer’s The Exodus Gate and Crown of Vengeance novels, said about the new book, “I'm so excited for the release of The Storm Guardians, and happy to be one of the first to tell readers that they're going to love the developments in this second installment of Zimmer's Rising Dawn Saga. Fans of The Exodus Gate will be happy to see the return of familiar faces, and some real heroes arising from the action. However, Stephen has taken care to ensure that new readers to the series will be able to jump right in to the story.”

The Storm Guardians also continues the artistic collaboration between fantasy artist Matthew Perry and Stephen Zimmer, featuring no less than thirteen brand new, full page illustrations, as well as the cover art. Along with The Exodus Gate and Crown of Vengeance, Matthew has now done more than 40 full page illustrations and three covers in his association with Stephen’s literary works. “Stephen's narratives cover the gamut of deep introspectiveness to epic, world-changing events. To have that range, and to be to able to go in and out of those possibilities, makes it an adventure for me to see what emerges from the empty canvas,” said Matthew.

One of the most active fantasy authors in productivity and appearances, Stephen will be visiting numerous conventions and bookstores throughout 2010 in support of The Storm Guardians and his other literary works and
film projects.

The Hypericon visit from June 4-6th in Nashville kicks off the support of The Storm Guardians, along with a June 7th appearance at Davis-Kidd Booksellers in Memphis, TN. “I am really honored to be launching the new book at Hypericon, which has always been a wonderful event, with many special friends, readers, and amazing guests, like this year’s guest of honor, a living literary legend, Ramsey Campbell. I’m very thankful to Fred Grimm for this opportunity. I can’t wait to find out what readers think of The Storm Guardians, as I believe it shows how I build upon my foundations in a series. Expect loads of action, and many surprises!” Stephen said.

A special collector’s edition hardcover, limited to 75 copies, is now being offered with a full package of collectibles, with trade paperback, hardcover, Kindle, and eBook editions to follow.

Updates and additional information can be obtained at the official site for Seventh Star Press, at www.seventhstarpress.com , or at the author's site at www.stephenzimmer.com

Hypericon’s official website can be found at: www.hypericononline.com


Contact: C.C. James
Public Relations, Seventh Star Press
ccjames@seventhstarpress.com
Seventh Star Press Mailing Address:
3801 Dylan Place Suite 116, #7
Lexington, Ky. 40514-1062

Seventh Star Press is a small press publisher of speculative fiction located in Lexington Kentucky.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Edi's Weekend Wave #21

Hello and welcome to issue #21 of Edi's Weekend Wave. I'm happy that I could manage to write and post this issue. Even it is shorter than usual. I'm full of plans but I fail miserably with realization. This is sad and doesn't make me happy. Every morning and every evening I face myself in the mirror and say: "Stop wailing! You have a job, you have a wonderful family, you find time to read and to go to gym. Sooner or later you will find time to write all the outstanding reviews. The more pressure you put on you the longer it will take to write them. Enjoy life!" And now enjoy reading ...


Edi's Guidepost

The Lighthouse
News and information straight from the horse's mouth by Lighthouse keeper ediFanoB
  1. Reading progress
Books
The latest report from our shelf shop net correspondent Bona
  1. Books received this week
Blogosphere
Messages from the depths of the blogosphere by spheronaut Bona Fide
  1. Publisher Reviews
  2. Books and Cakes
Movies
Remote control junkie Fide and his zapping highlights
  1. Predators
Quotes
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 idioms Bee. . . . .

The Lighthouse

Yay! I finished two books this week, continued to read one and started one more. So you see I'm busy at the reading front. Now I need to find time to write a bunch of reviews ...

Books finished:
City of Ruin (June 2010, 467 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-0230712591], by Mark Charan Newton
Awesome! What a great, great read.

Burning Skies (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-0553385427] by David J. Williams
Breathtaking nearly non stop action.

Books in progress:
The Strange Affair of Spring-Heeled Jack (April 30th 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1906727208] by Mark Hodder
Read 173 of 479 pages
Gorgeous!

Shadow Prowler (2010, 396 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-0765324030] by Alexey Pehov
Read 53 of 396 pages
It is a lot better than I expected after reading several mixed reviews.

The Gaslight Dogs (April 2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0316021791] by Karin Lowachee.
Start reading it tonight.

Books

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.

This week we received two books which we ordered in advance.

The first one has been published first in 2009. And I waited for the paperback. I talk about Yellow Blue Tibia (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0575083585] by Adam Roberts.
"Russia, 1946, the Nazis recently defeated. Stalin gathers half a dozen of the top Soviet science fiction authors in a dacha in the countryside somewhere. Convinced that the defeat of America is only a few years away, and equally convinced that the Soviet Union needs a massive external threat to hold it together, to give it purpose and direction, he tells the writers: 'I want you to concoct a story about aliens poised to invade earth ... I want it to be massively detailed, and completely believable. If you need props and evidence to back it up, then we can create them. But when America is defeated, your story must be so convincing that the whole population of Soviet Russia believes in it--the population of the whole world!' The little group of writers gets down to the task and spends months working on it. But then new orders come from Moscow: they are told to drop the project; Stalin has changed his mind; forget everything about it. So they do. They get on with their lives in their various ways; some of them survive the remainder of Stalin's rule, the changes of the 50s and 60s. And then, in the aftermath of Chernobyl, the survivors gather again, because something strange has started to happen. The story they invented in 1946 is starting to come true ... A typically mind-blowing SF novel from one of the genre's literary stars." [Source]
There are several reasons why I want to read the following book soon. That means I will read it in June 2010.
Reason one, reason two, reason three, reason four, reason five, reason six. I did not need more. And you?
This is the book I'm talking about: Kraken (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-0333989517] by China Miéville.
"The Natural History Museum's prize exhibit - a giant squid - suddenly disappears. This audacious theft leads Clem, the research scientist who has recently finished preserving the exhibit, into a dark urban underworld of warring cults and surreal magic. It seems that for some, the squid represents a god and should be worshiped as such. Clem gradually comes to realise that someone may be attempting to use the squid to trigger an apocalypse. And so it is now up to him and a renegade squid-worshiper named Dean to find a way of stopping the destruction of the world as they know it whilst themselves surviving the all out-gang warfare that they have unwittingly been drawn into..." [Source]




No more today, need to read before I sleep
See you next week ......

Blogosphere

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...

I like and appreciate it when other blogger come up with new and fresh ideas like Tia Nevitt, the mastermind behind Debut & Reviews. This week she started with a new feature: Publisher Reviews. Read the review of Small Beer Press.

A lot of people who love books also love cakes. What do you get when you merge books and cakes?
Have a look at Sweet Reading Sweets and you get the answer.

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


Movies

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.
But don't worry. All the stuff I present to you will be shown at normal speed.

From all Predator movies shown so far, I watched so far just the one from 1987 starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.


But maybe this will change this year. In July Predators will hit the cinemas. It is a sequel to Predator and Predator 2. I have two videos for you. The first one is the trailer and the second one is the trailer dissected by IGN Movies. I like to see that Laurence Fishburne acts as as Noland, a stranded former U.S. soldier. A different role compared to Matrix. And against the trend it is a 2D movie.





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

Quotes

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.
Did you read ediFanoB's lamentation at the top of the post? I think now the time has come for disappointment quotes ...


"The simple solution for disappointment depression: Get up and get moving. Physically move. Do. Act. Get going.
Peter McWilliams, Life 101


"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
Mark Twain, US humorist, novelist, short story author, & wit (1835 - 1910)


"The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire; the size of your dream; and how you handle disappointment along the way.
Robert Kiyosaki, American motivational Speaker and Author (1947 -)


"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.
Martin Luther King, American Baptist Minister and Civil-Rights Leader (1929-1968)


"Year, n. A period of three hundred and sixty-five disappointments.
Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary, US author & satirist (1842 - 1914)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Edi's Lighthouse Chatter: The Hammer Cover

This evening I wanted to continue to read my PDF copy of City of Ruin (June 2010, 400 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-0230712591], by Mark Charan Newton.
But it is always dangerous to read a PDF on a laptop. As you can imagine I could not resist to go online.
And of course I found one more book for me. Orbit posted the cover of the next K J Parker novel:
The Hammer (January 2011, 512 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-1841495149] by K J Parker.
"The colony was founded seventy years ago. The plan was originally to mine silver, but there turned out not to be any.
Now an uneasy peace exists on the island, between the colonists and the once-noble met’Oc, a family in exile on a remote stronghold for their role in a vaguely remembered civil war. The met’Oc are tolerated, in spite of occasional cattle stealing raids, since they alone possess the weapons considered necessary protection in the event of the island’s savages becoming hostile.
Gignomai is the youngest brother in the current generation of met’Oc. He is about to discover exactly what it is expected of him; and what it means to defy his family." [Source]
The cover is in the same "artifact" look as The Folding Knife (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-978-1857236101] and The Engineer trilogy which is still on my to buy list. I'm a fan of K J Parker since I read and reviewed The Colours in the Steel (1998) [ISBN-13: 978-978-1857236101], the first book in the Fencer trilogy.

I think I should read some K J Parker books in summer .....

Monday, May 17, 2010

Edi's Lighthouse Chatter: Mirage

Hello, this is ediFanoB himself. Mirage.....
Yesterday I posted that I read Escapement [ISBN-13: 978-0765356376] by Jay Lake . To be honest that is not true which I found out during a check of my Goodreads book shelves today. I'm sorry.
Of course I will read Escapement before I read Pinion.

Here are some information about Escapement [ISBN-13: 978-0765356376] by Jay Lake.
"In his novel Mainspring, Lake created an enormous canvas for storytelling with his hundred mile high Equatorial Wall that holds up the great Gears of the Earth. Now in Escapement, he explores more of that territory.
Paolina Barthes is a young woman of remarkable intellectual ability - a genius on the level of Isaac Newton. But she has grown up in isolation, in a small village of shipwreck survivors, on the Wall in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. She knows little of the world, but she knows that England rules it, and must be the home of people who possess the learning that she so desperately wants. And so she sets off to make her way off the Wall, not knowing that she will bring her astounding, unschooled talent for sorcery to the attention of those deadly factions who would use or kill her for it." [Source]
I know that will change my reading list again. But I think it is OK for me. Anyway I know I have to work on my review backlog soon.

Edi's Lighthouse Chatter: Change of May 2010 reading plan

Hello, this is ediFanoB himself. I feel a lot better since my other personalities took over the review part of the blog.

Two days ago I left a commented Simcha's review of Changeless by Gail Carriger over at SFF Chat.
I loved Soulless (2009) [ISBN-13: 978-0316056632], the first book in the Parasol Protectorate series.
It was the first book ever I "hijacked". I wrote in my review:
"For me Gail Carriger is the Ada Lovelace of the urban steampunk romance!
...
Soulless is a three S story: Sassy, Steamy, Smart."
Therefore I added the second book in the Parasol Protectorate series to my May 2010 reading list:
Changeless (April 2010, 374 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-0316074148], by Gail Carriger. The blurb contains spoilers. If you want to read it just highlight the text between the " ".
"Alexia Tarabotti, the Lady Woolsey, awakens in the wee hours of the mid-afternoon to find her husband, who should be decently asleep like any normal werewolf, yelling at the top of his lungs. Then he disappears - leaving her to deal with a regiment of supernatural soldiers encamped on her doorstep, a plethora of exorcised ghosts, and an angry Queen Victoria. But Alexia is armed with her trusty parasol, the latest fashions, and an arsenal of biting civility. Even when her investigations take her to Scotland, the backwater of ugly waistcoats, she is prepared: upending werewolf pack dynamics as only the soulless can. She might even find time to track down her wayward husband, if she feels like it." [Source]

I recommend to read my Soulless review and Simcha's Changeless review. As Simcha pointed out, there is a big cliffhanger at the end of Changeless. Therefore she highly recommends to wait with reading of Changeless until the publishing of the next Parasol Protectorate book:
Blameless (September 2010, 384 p.) [ISBN-13: 978-0316074155]
The blurb contains spoilers. If you want to read it just highlight the text between the " ".
"Quitting her husband's house and moving back in with her horrible family, Lady Maccon becomes the scandal of the London season.
Queen Victoria dismisses her from the Shadow Council, and the only person who can explain anything, Lord Akeldama, unexpectedly leaves town. To top it all off, Alexia is attacked by homicidal mechanical ladybugs, indicating, as only ladybugs can, the fact that all of London's vampires are now very much interested in seeing Alexia quite thoroughly dead.
While Lord Maccon elects to get progressively more inebriated and Professor Lyall desperately tries to hold the Woolsey werewolf pack together, Alexia flees England for Italy in search of the mysterious Templars. Only they know enough about the preternatural to explain her increasingly inconvenient condition, but they may be worse than the vampires -- and they're armed with pesto." [Source]
It seems there will be a fourth book in the Parasol Protectorate series, to be published in 2011. Look here .....
Anyway I highly recommend the Parasol Protectorate series.But I will follow Simcha's recommendation and postpone my reading of Changeless to September 2010.

Now I have to decide which book to read instead. I own a lot of unread books. Finally I will go for Pinion (2010) [ISBN-13: 978-1841496337] by Jay Lake. This is the third book in the Clockwork Earth series.
I read and reviewed Mainspring (2007) [ISBN-13: 978-0765356369]and I read Escapement [ISBN-13: 978-0765356376]. I liked them both and of course look forward to discover Pinion. The cover is gorgeous.
"Rejoin the Librarian and the Chinese submarine captain, the British sailor, the clockwork man, and the young sorceress who has gone south of the great equatorial wall. This adventure in Lake’s Clockwork Earth continues the tale begun in Escapement."
There is also a more detailed blurb available. But I don't want to give too many information.

I could not withstand. You will understand when you read the comment on the cover. You don't need a magnifying glass. I quote it for you:
"With its airships, submarines, world-spanning gears, and fantastic creatures, Lake's clockworld world continues to be a fantastic place to visit." [BookList]

Enjoy reading!
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