Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Author's Notes: Just a quick warning for some of the characters being briefly mentioned as...let's say having disturbing views that I don't share. Also, this was pretty hard to write. Scenes I can do, aftermath scenes...not so much.
( I can't lose you. )
( Marble cage pendant shot behind the cut. )
(I only link to one retail outlet in the book's listing, but most books are available at multiple outlets, like Kobo, iBooks, international Amazons, Barnes & Noble, etc. The short stories are usually on free online magazines.)
* Free Story: Extracurricular Activities by Yoon Ha Lee
A space opera adventure set in a distant future where an undercover agent has to go behind enemy lines to recover a lost ship and a possible traitor.
* The White Road of the Moon by Rachel Neumeier
Imagine you live with your aunt, who hates you so much she’s going to sell you into a dreadful apprenticeship. Imagine you run away before that can happen. Imagine that you can see ghosts—and talk with the dead. People like you are feared, even shunned.
* Beasts Made of Night by Tochi Onyebuchi
Packed with dark magic and thrilling action, Beasts Made of Night is a gritty Nigerian-influenced fantasy perfect for fans of Paolo Bacigalupi and Nnedi Okorafor. In the walled city of Kos, corrupt mages can magically call forth sin from a sinner in the form of sin-beasts – lethal creatures spawned from feelings of guilt. Taj is the most talented of the aki, young sin-eaters indentured by the mages to slay the sin-beasts. But Taj’s livelihood comes at a terrible cost. When he kills a sin-beast, a tattoo of the beast appears on his skin while the guilt of committing the sin appears on his mind. Most aki are driven mad by the process, but 17-year-old Taj is cocky and desperate to provide for his family.
* The Song of the Dead by Carrie Patel
Finally, the lost histories of the Catastrophe will be revealed and with them the ultimate fate of the buried city of Recoletta in thedramatic conclusion to Carrie Patel’s trilogy. With Ruthers dead and the Library Accord signed by Recoletta, its neighbours, and its farming communes, Inspector Malone and her partner Laundress Jane Lin are in limbo as the city leaders around them vie for power.
* The Truth About Cats and Wolves by Alethea Kontis
Like many paranormals of Greek descent, Kai Xanthopoulos will not know her true nature until her young powers fully manifest. Unlike her parents—and much to the dismay of her stray cat best friend—Kai has chosen not to spend the rest of her life at the diner in Nocturne Falls. She takes a job at Delaney’s Delectables instead, a decision that puts her directly in the path of a fugitive werewolf that could change her destiny...
* Ash and Quill by Rachel Caine
Hoarding all the knowledge of the world, the Great Library jealously guards its secrets. But now a group of rebels poses a dangerous threat to its tyranny.... Jess Brightwell and his band of exiles have fled London, only to find themselves imprisoned in Philadelphia, a city led by those who would rather burn books than submit. But Jess and his friends have a bargaining chip: the knowledge to build a machine that will break the Library’s rule.
* The House of Binding Thorns by Aliette de Bodard
The multi-award-winning author of The House of Shattered Wings continues her Dominion of the Fallen saga as Paris endures the aftermath of a devastating arcane war.... As the city rebuilds from the onslaught of sorcery that nearly destroyed it, the great Houses of Paris, ruled by Fallen angels, still contest one another for control over the capital. House Silverspires was once the most powerful, but just as it sought to rise again, an ancient evil brought it low. Phillippe, an immortal who escaped the carnage, has a singular goal—to resurrect someone he lost. But the cost of such magic might be more than he can bear.
* The Terracotta Bride by Zen Cho
A tale of first love, bad theology and robot reincarnation in the Chinese afterlife. In the tenth court of hell, spirits wealthy enough to bribe the bureaucrats of the underworld can avoid both the torments of hell and the irreversible change of reincarnation.
* With Blood Upon the Sand by Bradley Beaulieu
Çeda, now a Blade Maiden in service to the kings of Sharakhai, trains as one of their elite warriors, gleaning secrets even as they send her on covert missions to further their rule. She knows the dark history of the asirim—that hundreds of years ago they were enslaved to the kings against their will—but when she bonds with them as a Maiden, chaining them to her, she feels their pain as if her own. They hunger for release, they demand it, but with the power of the gods compelling them, they find their chains unbreakable.
* Ghost Summer by Tananarive Due
Stephen King says, "Ms. Due accomplishes the hardest thing of all with deceptive ease, creating characters we care about on their most human level." Whether weaving family life and history into dark fiction or writing speculative Afrofuturism, American Book Award winner and Essence bestselling author Tananarive Due's work is both riveting and enlightening. In her debut collection of short fiction, Due takes us to Gracetown, a small Florida town that has both literal and figurative ghost; into future scenarios that seem all too real; and provides empathetic portraits of those whose lives are touched by Otherness. Featuring an award-winning novella and fifteen stories-one of which has never been published before-GHOST SUMMER: STORIES, is sure to both haunt and delight.
Art rec: Beautiful ink and watercolor paintings by Likhain
Barnes and Noble Blog: The 2016 Nebula Award Nominees Show Us Diverse New Worlds
What I read
I finished Truth is not sober, and while a lot of these stories were clearly responding to particular issues of the time, at which some worked better than others as actual stories for the ages, there was something very delightful indeed about coming across a trove of Holtby's fiction that I hadn't already read.
JA Jance, Judgement Call (2012) - clearly I've been falling behind on the Joanna Brady mysteries, because I discovered 2 I hadn't read available in ebook and one crossover with another of her series characters that I don't much care for. I'd forgotten how good they are, or maybe this was a particularly strong one.
Ellen Klages, Passing Strange (2017) - ok, it is a novella, but I thought this was a little on the slight side, might be just me.
On the go
Still trucking on with the massive Inchbald biography, which is perhaps a little close focus, but does do a good job of embedding her in her wider theatrical milieu.
In spite of Kobo's claim that I had cancelled my pre-order (on the very morning it was due to be available WOT) I have acquired KJ Charles, An Unseen Attraction and am about partway through. Just possibly the author is being a tad presentist in the characters' expressed distaste for the excesses of Victorian taxidermy - kittens stuffed and doing the sorts of things they do in Louis Wain paintings, etc?
Well, there's another JA Jance sitting on my ereader, plus the various Flashmans I inherited, and I'm tempted to see to what extent John Masters' Far, Far the Mountain Peak (1957), which was probably my personal favourite of his Savage family sequence, holds up.
I can't find the video but, there was one I saw where a guy in a c7 was able to enter an event where they closed down a highway (Colorado I think?) and all drivers were paced out and allowed to go flat out until the line. After some searching I found a similar even in Nevada: http://www.sscc.us/ It's been to only one I've found so far.
Does anyone have that video or know what these type of events are called?
I've been looking at these cars since they went on sale, because I think they are awesome. They are something else entirely compared to the competition of the time.
I was recently in a position where I could actually purchase one after searching for it for a good while, and leaving several other cars at the seller's door for various reasons. Because Renault doesn't sell cars in the USA, I've added some info about this model below. If you don't care for the text, the photo's are at the bottom!
About the Renault Vel Satis.
The Renault Vel Satis was the 'Executive' car for the French brand from 2002 - 2009, when production was discontinued due to disappointing sales. The car was facelifted in 2005. The exterior changes were pretty minor. A different front grille, bumper, new rear lights and different exhaust tips. That's it.
Technically there were a fair few more changes. A different board computer, new gear box (Aisin Warner, the same gearbox that you can find in a Volvo of the time), an engine update for the 2.0 Turbo petrol and updated cooling for the Nissan-sourced 3.5 V6 24V petrol engine.
The Vel Satis was available with 5 engines. 2 petrol engines (turbocharged 2.0T 170BHP, Nissan-sourced 3.5 V6 24V 245BHP), 3 turbocharged, diesels (2.0dCi, 2.2dCi, Isuzu-sourced 3.0 V6 dCi). Only the 2.0T and 2.2dCi had a manual gearbox, all other versions had an automatic gearbox, courtesy of Aisin Warner. The car had the maximum score at EuroNCAP for occupants, and the lowest score when it came to pedestrian protection. It was the quietest car of its class, up until the introduction of the facelift version of the Citroën C6 in 2006.
The Renault Vel Satis was the first Renault model to optionally feature Adaptive Cruise Control. Renault produced only about 62.000 vehicles before discontinuing the mode in 2009.
About my Vel Satis.
My Vel Satis is a 2.0 Turbo petrol version. It was produced and sold in 2008, one of 66 other Vel Satis' sold in that year in The Netherlands. It has approximately 215.000km on it (~133 594 Freedom Miles).
The 2.0 Turbo engine produces 170BHP and 300Nm torque, for a top speed of 206km/h. Aboard the car one of the most striking features are the seats, which are extremely comfortable and very big. For a European car at least. It further has the automatic gearbox, cruise control, rain- and light sensors, and double glass side windows making this car extremely quiet inside.
It's a model that has many admirers of its design, and also many opponents. It's certainly a design that gives cause to debate, so I'm eager to hear your thoughts.