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• Magic’s Pawn – Mercedes Lackey
o This is one of my favorite books of all time. I reread this book every couple of years… and tear up every time. In the first book in "The Last Herald Mage" series, Vanyel, an uptight, snobbish heir who doesn’t want to rule, is sent to the capital to “learn how to govern.” In reality, he is being sent into exile. In his banishment, Vanyel finds heroism, magic, love, and tragedy in the unlikeliest of places.
• Magic Bites – Ilona Andrews
o In a dystopian world where magic alternates with technology, mercenary Kate Daniels has to deal with shape-shifters, magic, murderous vampires and necromancers, and the threat of a empire-ruling father who wants her dead. Urban fantasy (with a little paranormal romance) at is best.
• Time of the Dark – Barbara Hambly
o History grad student Gil Patterson and biker Rudy get pulled into a medieval world being terrorized by the Dark: amorphous creatures who strip humans of their flesh and blood. Gil and Rudy team up with wizard Ingold Inglorian to attempt to save Darwath from the horrible creatures. This is one of my all-time go to books.
• Written in Red – Anne Bishop
o Humans are not the dominant species on earth, the Others are… and the Others have been known to eat a human or two when annoyed. When the Others meet human Blood Prophet, Meg Corbyn, who is on the run from the people keeping her in Benevolent Ownership (i.e. legalized slavery) everything changes. I recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a great read.
• March Upcountry – John Ringo
o Roger MacClintock, third in line for the Throne of Man, has been sent on a diplomatic mission (mostly to get him out of the way). When the spaceship he is traveling on is sabotaged, Roger and his marine guard crash on Marduk. Now, the marines need to get the spoiled prince across a hostile planet filled with horrific alien creatures determined to kill all things human in order to return him to his Empress mother. Let the march begin. I love spaceship war. Add in bad boy princes and it only gets better.
• On Basilisk Station – David Weber
o Spaceship captain, Honor Harrington, has been given an impossible assignment. She needs to patrol and protect an entire planetary system with one ship. But Harrington has never been one to shirk her duty, so she is going to protect the system, no matter how many enemies she may make or the cost. And... it will be costly – not only in money, but in lives. My go-to sci-fi recommendation. No one who loves science fiction should miss this one.
• With the Lightnings – David Drake
o Interplanetary War! Daniel Leary, a military political appointee, wants nothing more than drink and women on his first real deployment. Librarian Adele Mundy just wants to get her new library up and running. Unfortunately their plans are derailed when Kostrama, the planet they are on, erupts in civil war. Spaceship war and a deadly librarian! What more can one ask for?
• Iron Duke – Meljean Brook
o This steampunk paranormal romance is one of my favorites of the genre. Mina, a detective inspector with Scotland Yard, is called to a suspicious death at the Iron Duke’s manor. Who would threaten the Iron Duke, the person responsible for England’s freedom from the Mongol Empire? Mina will need all of her detective skills to find out.
• Moon Called – Patricia Briggs
o Mercedes Thompson is an ordinary VW mechanic. What’s not so ordinary? She also happens to be a coyote shape-shifter. In a world full of vampires, werewolves, and fey, what is one lone coyote shifter to do? Get in trouble, that’s what. Urban fantasy/paranormal romance at its best.
• Angel’s Blood – Nalini Singh
o Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux has been hired by the dangerously beautiful Archangel Raphael – to track an evil archangel. As a human, Elena is dangerously outclassed, by both her employer and her prey. Urban fantasy + paranormal romance + adventure = awesome. Add in angels and vampires and you get an outstanding read.
• To Ride Pegasus – Anne McCaffrey
o People always tout McCaffrey’s Pern series, but I find I have more appreciation for her Pegasus and her Tower and Hive series. I mean dragons are cool and all, but the everyday life of psychics in a near future where they are struggling for respectability has always struck a chord with me. All of Anne McCaffrey’s writings are awesome and well worth (re)reading, but this one and its sequel Pegasus in Flight are my favorites.
Happy rereading everyone!