Monday, July 6, 2009

The Debuts of June! (Just a bit late!)

Most of June ended up being a hiatus, during which I missed many of the debuts that are on my calendar (which you can find in the left column). Therefore, here is a rundown of everything that I missed prior to this week.

Happy Release and Congratulations to all of these authors.

Nights of Villjamur by Mark Charan Newton (UK Release-Amazon link through US site)

An ice age strikes a chain of islands, and thousands come to seek sanctuary at the gates of Villjamur: a city of ancient spires and bridges, a place where banshees wail the deceased, cultists use forgotten technology for their own gain and where, further out, the dead have been seen walking across the tundra.

When the Emperor commits suicide, his elder daughter, Rika, is brought home to lead the Jamur Empire, but the sinister Chancellor plans to get rid of her and claim the throne for himself.

Meanwhile a senior investigator in the city inquisition must solve the high-profile and savage murder of a city politician, whilst battling evils within his own life, and a handsome and serial womanizer manipulates his way into the imperial residence with a hidden agenda.

When reports are received that tens of thousands of citizens are dying in a bizarre genocide on the northern islands of the Empire, members of the elite Night Guard are sent to investigate. It seems that, in this land under a red sun, the long winter is bringing more than just snow . . .

This one is coming out "soon" through Del Rey, but I'm not exactly sure when. Mixtures of fantasy and mystery always hold extra allure for me, so I'll put this one on my watch list.

Silver Phoenix: Beyond the Kingdom of Xia by Cindy Pon

On the day of her first betrothal meeting--and rejection--Ai Ling discovers a power welling deep within her. She can reach into other people’s spirits, hear their thoughts, see their dreams…and that’s just the beginning.

Ai Ling has been marked by the immortals; her destiny lies in the emperor’s palace, where a terrible evil has lived, stealing souls, for centuries. She must conquer this enemy and rescue her captive father, while mythical demons track her every step. And then she meets chen yong, a young man with a quest of his own, whose fate is intertwined with hers. Here is a heart-stopping, breathtaking tale for fans of action, fantasy, and romance--of anything with the making of legend.

This one came out in April, Raven knows of her through a friend. I find the Oriental setting quite intriguing. When I was in high school, I adored everything oriental, and I still have some oriental art that I acquired during that time.

Twilight of Avalon by Anna Elliott

She is a healer, a storyteller, a warrior, and a queen without a throne. In the shadow of King Arthur's Britain, one woman knows the truth that could save a kingdom from the hands of a tyrant...

Ancient grudges, old wounds, and the quest for power rule in the newly widowed Queen Isolde's court. Hardly a generation after the downfall of Camelot, Isolde grieves for her slain husband, King Constantine, a man she secretly knows to have been murdered by the scheming Lord Marche -- the man who has just assumed his title as High King. Though her skills as a healer are renowned throughout the kingdom, in the wake of Con's death, accusations of witchcraft and sorcery threaten her freedom and her ability to bring Marche to justice. Burdened by their suspicion and her own grief, Isolde must conquer the court's distrust and superstition to protect her throne and the future of Britain.

One of her few allies is Trystan, a prisoner with a lonely and troubled past. Neither Saxon nor Briton, he is unmoved by the political scheming, rumors, and accusations swirling around the fair queen. Together they escape, and as their companionship turns from friendship to love, they must find a way to prove what they know to be true -- that Marche's deceptions threaten not only their lives but the sovereignty of the British kingdom.

In Twilight of Avalon, Anna Elliott returns to the roots of the legend of Trystan and Isolde to shape a very different story -- one based in the earliest written versions of the Arthurian tales -- a captivating epic brimming with historic authenticity, sweeping romance, and the powerful magic of legend.

We just had a lengthy comment discussion on Arthurian retellings a few posts down. While this isn't strictly an Arthurian retelling, it is also a story from Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur.

Mark of the Demon by Diana Rowland

Why me? Why now? That’s what Beaulac, Louisiana, detective Kara Gillian was asking herself when an angelic creature named Rhyzkahl unexpectedly appeared during a routine summoning. Kara was hoping to use her occult skills to catch a serial killer, but never had she conjured anything like this unearthly beautiful and unspeakably powerful being whose very touch set off exquisite new dimensions of pleasure. But can she enlist his aid in helping her stop a killer who’s already claimed the lives—and souls—of thirteen people? And should she? The Symbol Man is a nightmare that the city thought had ended three years ago. Now he’s back for an encore and leaving every indication on the flesh of his victims that he, too, is well versed in demonic lore.

Kara may be the only cop on Beaulac’s small force able to stop the killer, but it is her first homicide case. Yet with Rhyzkahl haunting her dreams, and a handsome yet disapproving FBI agent dogging her waking footsteps, she may be in way over her head...

This sets off a few too many red flags for me to be interested in it, since I generally won't go near the demonic unless its clear they are the villain. And even then, I'm picky. Raven?

The Dog of the North by Tim Stretton
It is winter on the lawless steppes of Emmenrule when Lady Isola, traveling to the fortified city of Croad, is kidnapped by the dreaded Beauceron, the Dog of the North. It is Beauceron's life's ambition to capture Croad itself—whatever the cost—but what is the source of his obsession?

Meanwhile in Croad, Arren, a young man of talent but obscure birth, is taken under the wing of the city's ruler, Lord Thaume, and grows into a young knight of prowess and reputation. But as his fortunes rise, those of his childhood friend Eilla decline. Years later, Beauceron returns with Lady Isola to his home, the frozen city of Mettingloom, determined to raise an army to capture the city he loathes. In Croad, when Eilla is forced to work as a servant in Lord Thaume's household, Arren realizes that his love for her is more important than his prospects for advancement. They plan to elope, but Lord Thaume's jealous daughter Siedra is much more dangerous than Arren realizes.

This author self-published two previous novels set in this world. It's always interesting to see a self-published author later succeed, so we wish Mr. Stretton extra congratulations.

Please excuse the lack of cover art. I'm hoping you come here for the content, not the pictures.


suzie townsend said...

Thanks for this. I don't have any of these titles on my TBR list so I'll have to check them out :)

Sweet Book Delights said...

Aaaaaaahhhhhhh more quality content! Where do you find all the time? There's 3 of us doing stuff on ours and we couldn't hope to match you in a million years!!
You rock, absolutely rock!!
Too excited to see your indepth reviews :p
Chilli xxx

Tim Stretton said...

Tia, thanks very much for your good wishes.

Tia Nevitt said...

You're welcome Tim, and thank you Sweet! I would not have been able to do this post without my little "Inform me of a Debut" form submission. It allows various authors, publicists and even fans to help me out! I put each submission on my calendar, from which I can easily copy and paste.

This post probably took an hour to put together. I worked on it for about 20 minutes on Sunday and another 30 or so minutes on Monday, just before I posted it. So you see, that's not a long time after all.

I've evolved a bit of a system and I had to get efficient or stop doing this.

Sweet Book Delights said...

I was appreciative before of you're blog, now I'm SUPER appreciative :]
Thanks so much for your hard work, it rocks. Lots.
Chilli xx

Anonymous said...

Nights of Villjamur sounds pretty good. I'll have to keep a watch out for that one.

Chicory said...

A new take on Tristin and Isolde? Cool!
off topic: I was in Borders the other day, and saw that `The Sword Edged Blond' is now in paperback. I read that book awhile ago after reading your review. :)

Raven said...

Mark of the Demon would be a maybe for me. Urban fantasy needs to stop with the kickass female detectives and private eyes. There are so many other professions and personality types out there (we've talked about the personality types before). I'm also not big on the idea of a demon-summoning protagonist. Like you, Tia, I generally like my demons painted black. However, if this book hooked me, I'd give it a read.

ediFanoB said...

I read Nights of Villjamur and it is a great start of a series. For me the town Villjamur is the secret star of this book. With the depiction of Villjamur Mark Charan Newton shows his talent.