Broadside No. 14 – an author advertisement

Hear ye hear ye me mateys!  I announce an additional broadside to me Captain’s log.  What is a broadside ye ask?  Traditionally:

  1. A broadside is the side of a ship, the battery of cannon on one side of a warship; or their coordinated fire in naval warfare. From the 16th century until the early decades of the steamship, vessels had rows of guns set in each side of the hull. Firing all guns on one side of the ship became known as a “broadside“. source
  2. A broadside is a large sheet of paper printed on one side only. Historically, broadsides were posters, announcing events or proclamations, or simply advertisements. source

What does this mean for me mateys?  Well tomorrow I will publish the fourteenth edition of me broadside that will highlight a specific favorite author and their work.  Who ye ask?  It’s a surprise . . .

Abandon Ship – Stars are Legion (Kameron Hurley)

It is time to abandon ship, me mateys!  I made it to the 25.7% through the novel before I had to give up.  I believe this author is just not for me.  I previously tried reading her fantasy book, the mirror empire.  In that novel, I found the concepts to be interesting, the world building to be fascinating, and most of the characters to be written well.  Yet somehow the plot failed me.  I am not sure if the plot was just too slow or the descriptions were overdrawn but I abandoned it.  Yet Hurley’s writing was good enough that when I heard she had a new sci-fi novel coming out, I thought I would give it a shot.  I felt the same way about the stars are legion as I did about the fantasy book.

I actually thought the plot was an awesome set-up.  Zan is a character who wakes up not remembering her past but is told she keeps being reanimated to help save the world.  She has failed all the previous times but perhaps this time will be different.  Zan is kick-ass, resourceful, and intelligent.  She finds herself performing tasks like fighting or repairing spacecraft with little effort but no memory of having learned how.  Through the snippets of memory that Zan does begin to retrieve, it is evident that complex politics and plots are unfolding.

Oh and this book is completely women dominated.  In fact, I don’t believe I read a single mention of a male at all.  So that was kinda cool.  But again the plot just failed me.  The writing and characterization were intriguing.  But after yet another description of one of the living ships that Zan visits, I was done.  I wanted more fighting and most of all more of Zan’s discoveries about herself.  I wanted more interpersonal relationships.  But perhaps ye will find this author to yer taste.  Lots of other people seem to as it has a 3.8 Goodreads rating and a 4 star Amazon rating.  I appear to be in the minority again and shall not be reading another book by this author anytime soon.

Goodreads has this to say about the novel:

Somewhere on the outer rim of the universe, a mass of decaying world-ships known as the Legion is traveling in the seams between the stars. For generations, a war for control of the Legion has been waged, with no clear resolution.  As worlds continue to die, a desperate plan is put into motion.

Zan wakes with no memory, prisoner of a people who say they are her family. She is told she is their salvation – the only person capable of boarding the Mokshi, a world-ship with the power to leave the Legion. But Zan’s new family is not the only one desperate to gain control of the prized ship. Zan finds that she must choose sides in a genocidal campaign that will take her from the edges of the Legion’s gravity well to the very belly of the world.

Zan will soon learn that she carries the seeds of the Legion’s destruction – and its possible salvation. But can she and her ragtag band of followers survive the horrors of the Legion and its people long enough to deliver it?

To visit the author’s website go to:

Kameron Hurley – Author

To buy the novel go to:

the stars are legion – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List

On the Horizon – the boy on the bridge (M.R. Carey)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this sci-fi eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . .

the boy on the bridge (M. R. Carey)

Title: the boy on the bridge

Author: M. R. Carey

Publisher: Orbit Books

Publication Date: May 2, 2017 (hardcover/e-book)

ISBN: 9780316300339

Source: NetGalley

I found this book to be even more compelling than me last read by Mr. Carey.  This yarn be what I call a companion novel to, the girl with all the gifts.  In me mind, it be a sequel but certainly can stand on its own.

This was a roller-coaster of a ride.  This novel also takes place in Britain during the end of days but follows a different group than the previous book – a scientific exploration team.  A mixed group of scientists and military personal are riding in an armored tank named Rosie.  Humanity is dying out and the group is out to collect samples that have been left in the field to hopefully find the clue to survival.  Of course, nothing goes as planned . . .

This team consists of twelve people.  One of the best things about both novels are the fascinating characters.  In particular, I fell in love with both Rina and Stephen.  Stephen is a young brilliant scientist who everyone dismisses as a useless child because of his age and autism.  Rina is his friend and fellow scientist who is one of the only folks to recognize his potential.  Like the relationship of Melanie and Ms. Justineau in the previous novel, the thoughts and feelings of Stephen and Rina drive much of the enjoyment.

Though there is plenty of other enjoyment to be had.  Whether it involves the breakdown of interpersonal relationships, politics, or dealing with ambushing hungries, I didn’t want to put this one down.  I suggest ye pick up either of the two novels and fall in love with Mr. Carey’s stories and characters.  I will certainly be reading more of his work, starting with fellside.

Check out these other reviews from me crew:

read the girl with all the gifts first – kate @ for winter’s nights

didn’t read the girl with all the gifts first – drew @ the tattooed book geek

Side note: Any one seen the film of the first novel?

So lastly . . .

Thank ye Orbit Books!

Goodreads has this to say about the novel:

Once upon a time, in a land blighted by terror, there was a very clever boy.

The people thought the boy could save them, so they opened their gates and sent him out into the world.

To where the monsters lived.

To visit the author’s website go to:

M. R. Carey – Author

To buy the novel go to:

the boy on the bridge – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List

Shiver me Timbers! An Introduction . . .

Ahoy there mateys!  Just wanted to introduce ye to two of the newest members of me crew.  A hearty welcome to:

“Admiral” Hezekiah

Junius Brutus i.e. “J.B.”, swab

Cause every ship needs a ratter or two and these two rambunctious rascals are already causing havoc.  Arrrrr!

Always remember:

Q: Where do pirates put their weapons?

A: In their enemies.

Hardy har har!!

x The Captain

On the Horizon – in calabria (Peter S. Beagle)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this fantasy eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . .

in calabria (Peter S. Beagle)

Title: in calabria

Author: Peter S. Beagle

Publisher: Tachyon Publications

Publication Date: February 14, 2017 (hardcover/e-book)

ISBN: 9781616962487

Source: NetGalley

So did ye know that Peter S. Beagle has written another awesome unicorn tale?  Well, now ye do.  If ye don’t know who Peter S. Beagle is then go and find a copy of the last unicorn and read it immediately; it’s one of the best books of all time.    Then watch the animated movie for good measure.  So when I saw that there was another unicorn tale, I had to read it.

I found this novella to be lovely.  While there are unicorns, the story is really about how Claudio Bianchi deals with and is changed by them.  Claudio is a cranky middle-aged farmer who lives on a farm in the Calabria region of Italy.  He is a bit of a loner that writes poetry.  So when he wakes one morning to find a unicorn on his farm in the middle of nowhere, his world is irrevocably changed.

I loved Signore Bianchi.  For being salty, he has a good heart.  Even his farm animals have great personalities.  The ending was a little unusual but the journey of watching Bianchi’s relationships with the unicorn and other folk makes it worth the read.

Check out this review from a member of me crew:

mogsy @ bibliosanctum

So lastly . . .

Thank you Tachyon Publications!

Netgalley has this to say about the novella:

To visit the author’s website go to:

Peter S. Beagle – Author

To buy the novel please visit:

in calabria – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List

Off the Charts – castle of water (Dane Huckelbridge)

Ahoy there me mateys!  For those of ye who are new to me log, a word: though this log’s focus is on sci-fi, fantasy, and young adult, this Captain does have broader reading tastes.  Occasionally, I will share some novels that I enjoyed that are off the charts (a non sci-fi, fantasy, or young adult novel), as it were.  So today I bring ye:

castle of water (Dane Huckelbridge)

Title: castle of water

Author: Dane Huckelbridge

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press / Thomas Dunne Books

Publication Date: April 4, 2017 (hardcover/e-book)

ISBN: 978-1250098221

Source: NetGalley

This novel captured me fancy when I read a post from yvonne @ it’s all about books stating that it is a modern Robinson Crusoe type tale wherein two people end up on a deserted island and struggle to survive. Now bein’ a pirate Captain and all, I find books about shipwrecks and deserted islands to be extremely fascinatin’.  I was thrilled to give this one a look-see.

In this tale, a French architect named Sophie and an American ex-banker named Barry find themselves stranded on a small island after a plane crash.  The only problem is that the uninhabited island is “some 2,359 miles from Hawaii, 4,622 miles from Chile, and 533 miles from the nearest living soul.”

This was an engaging tale from the beginning, and I read this in one sitting.  Sophie and Barry are seemingly opposites at first glance but their need for each other to survive slowly allows their commonalities to shine through.  The growth and dreams they exhibit are lovely.  I particularly loved how these two communicated in both their highs and lows.  And of course how and what they did to survive was fascinating in its own right.

The writing style of this novel was lovely.  Interspersed with the story of survival are brief but beautiful glimpses into other places and times.  Ye get the history of the island and the Polynesians who visited it.  Ye get an idea of other castaways from the past.  There is backstory of the doomed pilot and his mistakes that led to the present.  These forays enriched the understanding and depth of the central story of Sophie and Barry.  The eventual explanation and unfolding of the meaning of the novel’s title was mesmerizing and heart-wrenching.

I am so very glad to have this novel imprinted on me heart.  Truly me words are inadequate.

So lastly . . .

Thank you St. Martin’s Press / Thomas Dunne Books!

Goodreads has this to say about the novel:

Two very different people, one very small island.

For Sophie Ducel, her honeymoon in French Polynesia was intended as a celebration of life. The proud owner of a thriving Parisian architecture firm, co-founded with her brilliant new husband, Sophie had much to look forward to—including a visit to the island home of her favorite singer, Jacques Brel.

For Barry Bleecker, the same trip was meant to mark a new beginning. Turning away from his dreary existence in Manhattan finance, Barry had set his sights on fine art, seeking creative inspiration on the other side of the world—just like his idol, Paul Gauguin.

But when their small plane is downed in the middle of the South Pacific, the sole survivors of the wreck are left with one common goal: to survive. Stranded hundreds of miles from civilization, on an island the size of a large city block, the two castaways must reconcile their differences and learn to draw on one another’s strengths if they are to have any hope of making it home.

Told in mesmerizing prose, with charm and rhythm entirely its own, Castle of Water is more than just a reimagining of the classic castaway story. It is a stirring reflection on love’s restorative potential, as well as a poignant reminder that home—be it a flat in Paris, a New York apartment, or a desolate atoll a world away—is where the heart is.

To visit the author’s website go to:

Dane Huckelbridge – Author

To buy the novel please visit:

castle of water – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List

The Captain’s Log – something from the nightside (Simon R. Green)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I was looking to read something short that fit me current mood and this book was found in the hold.  Now urban fantasy is not me go to genre but I had previously read some of the author’s Hawk and Fisher novels and enjoyed them so I gave this a shot.

At 230 pages and a couple of hours worth of reading, I found this to be a fun read.  It centers around John Taylor, a private eye, who is hired to find a rich woman’s missing daughter.  He is an expert on finding lost things.  However this time there are two problems 1) the rich woman wants to come with him and 2) it means going back to Nightside, a place he has avoided for over five years.

What is Nightside ye ask?  Well it is a square mile in the middle of London that may or may not be part of our world.  It is always 3:00 a.m. and nighttime.  Monsters and myths abound.  Death is always present.  Some people call it Hell.  John grew up there.

It certainly is an odd little book.  I enjoyed the introduction to John Taylor even if it was obvious in reading it that it is the first book in a series.  Nightside had great atmosphere.  I particularly liked the pub, Strangefellows.  I also adored the character of Suzie Shooter.  There were some creepy elements dealing with insects and haunted houses.  Neither of which were like what I expected.  The only downside was that for a short book, the pacing felt a little slow and there was a lot of talking and not quite enough showing.  But it fit me mood and I am glad I read it.  I don’t however feel the need to read the other 11 books in the series!  Ye may love them all.

The author’s website has this to say about the novel:

John Taylor is not a private detective per se, but he has a knack for finding lost things. That’s why he’s been hired to descend into the Nightside, an otherworldly realm in the center of London where fantasy and reality share renting space and the sun never shines.

To visit the author’s website go to:

Simon R. Green – Author

To buy the e-book go to:

something from the nightside -Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List