Welcome to Top Ten Tuesday! This weekly shared “meme” has a different theme each week and is shared by many blogs. Our ten books aren’t usually in any particular order.
This week I’m listing ten books I enjoyed that have been released so far in 2016. I’m sure you’ll agree there are many more to come over the next six months, but there have been some enjoyable reads so far.
Top Ten Favorite 2016 Releases So Far This Year
1. A Tangle of Gold (Colours of Madeleine #3), Jaclyn Moriarty
From my review:
Where to begin? The Colours of Madeleine series is one of my favourites of the last few years, combining a beautifully imagined magical alternate reality with some very real characters with all sorts of issues. Our World is connected to the Kingdom of Cello through cracks in reality. These cracks were once freely open between the worlds, but now they are tightly controlled on the Cello side by the World Severance Unit (WSU). In A Corner of White, Madeleine finds a piece of paper sticking out of a crack in a parking meter on a street in Cambridge, England. It’s a note from Elliot, a young man from the region of the Farms, in Cello. They strike up a friendship by passing notes through the crack.
I LOVED this series, and I was so happy that I managed to force Philippa into reading it as well! We’re so excited to be meeting Jaclyn later in the year for the Brisbane Writer’s Festival! Here’s the rest of my review.
2. The Crown’s Game, Evelyn Skye
Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.
And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.
Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?
The Crown’s Game is our Two Little Birds Book Club pick for June. We’ll be discussing the book in the next week or two, so get ready to join in!
Nothing but death can keep eighteen-year-old Gideon Blake from achieving his goal of becoming a U.S. Army Ranger. As it turns out, it does.
While recovering from the accident that most definitely killed him, Gideon finds himself with strange new powers and a bizarre cuff he can’t remove. His death has brought to life his real destiny. He has become War, one of the legendary four horsemen of the apocalypse.
An apocalypse story with a twist, I really enjoyed reading about Gideon and Daryn. I was a big fan of Veronica Rossi from her Under the Never Sky series, but this one is quite different. Here’s my review.
4. Waer, Meg Caddy
When Lowell Sencha finds the strange girl lying as if dead on the riverbank, he is startled to find that she is like them: waer. Human, but able to assume the form of a wolf. The Sencha family’s small community has kept itself sequestered and unnoticed, free from persecution. The arrival of a fellow traveller, and a hunted one at that, threatens their very survival.
A werewolf tale with a twist, this Aussie YA debut had me hooked. Here’s my review.
5. Threader, Rebekah Turner
It’s the year 2050 and life is increasingly hard for ‘non-citizens’. A slowly emerging young minority has been exposed as ‘talents’; they harbour mutations that give them special gifts – super strength, regenerative powers, psychic gifts or the ability to sink through shadows and travel through time and space. As governments unite to form a global talent registry and powerful corporations step in to take control, a ‘talent’ can be a passport to citizenship and a better life, but there is a cost as Josie Ryder is about to discover.
In the style of X-Men, I found this school for the talented intriguing. Philippa and I were lucky enough to meet this local Brisbane author at the launch of Threader.
6. Dawn of Procyon, Mark R Healy
In the midst of an interstellar conflict, mechanic Landry Stanton is shipwrecked on a remote outpost planet, stranded along with a hostile alien that wants him dead.
All Landry wants is to forget the woman he left back on Earth, but now he finds that much bigger issues are at stake: the creature, belonging to a species known as the Argoni, may hold the key to turning the tide in the entire war, assuming Landry can live long enough to tell anyone about it.
Pitched into a life and death struggle against the brutal environment and the Argoni itself, Landry is forced to challenge everything he thought he knew about the war, the aliens and even himself.
I don’t read a lot of sci-fi these days, but I did find this Aussie space drama fascinating. Here’s my review.
7. The Lyre Thief, Jennifer Fallon
Her Serene Highness, Rakaia, Princess of Fardohnya, is off to Hythria, where her eldest sister is now the High Princess, to find herself a husband, and escape the inevitable bloodbath in the harem when her brother takes the throne.
Rakaia is not interested in marrying anyone, least of all some brute of a Hythrun Warlord she’s never met, but she has a plan to save herself from that, too. If she can just convince her baseborn sister, Charisee, to play along, she might actually get away with it.
…And in far off Medalon, someone has stolen the music.
This book is an amazing weaving of many different points of view. I enjoyed it – and I haven’t read any of Jennifer Fallon’s previous series. Highly recommended if you live large-scale epic fantasy. Here’s my review.
8. Yellow, Megan Jacobson
If fourteen-year-old Kirra is having a mid-life crisis now, then it doesn’t bode well for her life expectancy.
Her so-called friends bully her, whatever semblance of a mother she had has been drowned at the bottom of a gin bottle ever since her dad left them for another woman, and now a teenage ghost is speaking to her through a broken phone booth.
Kirra and the ghost make a pact. She’ll prove who murdered him almost twenty years ago if he does three things for her. He makes her popular, he gets her parents back together, and he doesn’t haunt her.
Things aren’t so simple however, and Kirra realises that people can be haunted in more ways than one.
An Aussie ghost story set in northern NSW. Also one of the most beautiful covers of the year so far! Here’s my review.
9. Rebel of the Sands, Alwyn Hamilton
Dustwalk is an unforgiving, dead-end town. It’s not the place to be poor or orphaned or female. And yet Amani Al’Hiza must call it ‘home’.
Amani wants to escape and see the world she’s heard about in campfire stories.
Then a foreigner with no name turns up, and with him she has the chance to run.
But the desert plains are full of dangerous magic. The Sultan’s army is on the rise and Amani is soon caught at the heart of a fearless rebellion…
An epic story of swirling desert sands, love, magic and revolution.
10. Raelia (Medoran Chronicles #2), Lynette Noni
Returning for a second year at Akarnae Academy with her gifted friends, Alexandra Jennings steps back through a doorway into Medora, the fantasy world that is full of impossibilities.
Despite the magical wonder of Medora, Alex’s life remains threatened by Aven Dalmarta, the banished prince from the Lost City of Meya who is out for her blood.
To protect the Medorans from Aven’s quest to reclaim his birthright, Alex and her friends seek out the Meyarin city and what remains of its ancient race.
I’ve met local author Lynette Noni on a couple of occasions now and she is lovely! Akarnae was her first book, but I like this second one a lot more. Here’s my review.