#BookBloggersSupport22 Challenge 7: Books You’ve Read From Recommendations From Fellow Book Bloggers.

The next challenge in my year long support for book bloggers. (Created by the ladies at PagesUnbound.)

It’s easy to recommend books to others, however it is much harder to match a book to a specific recipient. Some of the books below have been recommendations of either the book or the author. Others have been general recommendations on blogs from keen readers and I have gone ahead and bought my own copy.

Book covers for eleven book recommended to me by fellow book bloggers
Books recommended by book bloggers

First book: Hostile Ground (Stargate SG.1 by Sally Malcolm and Laura Harper) This is fan fiction, written around the popular Stargate TV series. Several authors have written ‘new’ episodes for the characters and I read a variety over the years. My favourite writer was Sally Malcolm, she caught the characters and the dialogue so well that I easily imagined them as real TV episodes.

Book blurb –

It was meant to be an easy mission, a walk in the park. But SG-1’s first trip off-world after Colonel O’Neill’s return from Edora (STARGATE SG-1: One Hundred Days) proves to be anything but easy.

Tapped for a covert assignment, O’Neill must conceal the truth from his team at all costs. So when Dr Daniel Jackson is injured and the mission begins to go awry, tensions quickly reach breaking point. Stranded on a hostile planet, and desperate to find a way home before it’s too late, O’Neill leads his fractured team on a desperate journey across a barren and forsaken world.

Faced with an enemy more vicious than anything they’ve encountered before, only SG-1’s strength as a unit will keep them alive – if the secret O’Neill is hiding doesn’t tear them apart first…

Second book: The Moment By Douglas Kennedy is a cold war thriller set mainly in Berlin. This was recommended to me because I like the edgy and tense themes in spy novels from this era.

Book blurb –

In this, his tenth novel, Douglas Kennedy has written that rare thing: a love story as morally complex as it is tragic and deeply reflective. Brilliantly gripping, it is an atmospherically dense, ethically tangled tale of romantic certainty and conflicting loyalties, all set amidst a stunningly rendered portrait of Berlin in the final dark years before The Wall came down.

Third book: Renegade by Laramie Briscoe. This is one book from the small town contemporary romance series set around a special task force group.

Book blurb –

Ryan “Renegade” Kepler

I’m the type of man who knows what I want. I make up my mind and stay in my lane, never veering off the course I set for myself.

Going into the military? Did it.
Serving overseas? Did it.
Youngest member of the Moonshine Task Force? That’s me.

Whitney Trumbolt

Ryan is ten years my junior, but damn, being a cougar never felt as good as it did the night we spent together. Now all I want to do is go back to how things were before.

But Ryan is my younger brother’s best friend, and where Trevor goes, Ryan goes. Instead I put my head in the sand and do my best to go about my life.

Fourth book: The Lady’s Slipper by Deborah Swift is historical fiction with a botanical theme.

Book blurb –

1660. King Charles II has returned from exile, but memories of the English Civil War still rankle. There are old scores to settle, and religious differences threaten to overturn a fragile peace. When Alice Ibbetson discovers a rare orchid, the Lady’s Slipper, growing in a wood belonging to Richard Wheeler, she is captivated by its beauty— though Wheeler, a Quaker, is determined to keep the flower where God intended it to grow.

Fifth book: The Dead Boxes Archive by John F Leonard is a collection of creepy mild horror short stories with a Dead Box theme.

Book blurb –

The Dead Boxes Archive is a chilling collection of short horror stories and horror novellas. Together for the first time in one volume, seven tales from the critically acclaimed Dead Boxes series.

Dead Boxes are scary things. Wonderful and dreadful secrets hiding themselves in plain view.
On the surface, they often appear to be ordinary, everyday objects. Items which are easily overlooked at first glance. Perhaps that’s just as well because the Dead Boxes are as far from ordinary and everyday as you can get. They hold miracle and mystery, horror and salvation, answers to questions best not asked and directions to places better left unfound.

Sixth book: Writing Vivid Dialogue by Rayne Hall is just one book from her Writer’s Craft series of non-fiction books. I’ve read several and often recommend them to writers to help hone their work.

Book blurb –

Do you want to write fast-paced, exciting, sizzling dialogue?

This book reveals professional dialogue techniques to characterise the speaker, carry the plot forward and entertain your readers.

This is not a beginner’s guide. I assume that you have mastered the basics of fiction writing, and you don’t need an explanation what dialogue is and why it matters for your story. But your dialogue isn’t as strong as your story deserves. Perhaps it drags, perhaps the characters all sound the same, and perhaps it lacks tension, wit or sparkle.

I’ll offer you a toolbox filled with techniques. These are not ‘rules’ every writer must follow, but tricks you can try. Pick, mix and match them to suit your characters and your story.

Seventh book: A Demon Bound by Debra Dunbar is the first book in the Imp series of urban fantasy tales. I’ve read all the books in the series and was really pleased to have found them.

Book blurb –

Samantha Martin is an imp, enjoying an extended vacation from Hel. All she wants to do is drink beer by the pool, play mischievous pranks on the humans, and get her hot neighbor in the sack. It’s a relaxing break from her infernal home, as long as she manages to avoid the angels, who won’t hesitate to execute her on sight. But when her naughty hellhound lands her in trouble with the local werewolf pack, Sam is blackmailed into helping track and catch a killer. The steps she must take to appease the werewolves will put her right in the crosshairs of the angels. And with angels, there is no second chance.

Eighth book: The Worst Journey In The World by John R. McKay is World War Two historical fiction set on a boat heading to Russia via the arctic.

Book blurb –

When George Martin joins the crew of the Royal Navy frigate, HMS Virtuous, he is keen to start his new life at sea, but after trips escorting relief cargoes to the stricken island of Malta, he soon realises that life on a warship is anything but easy.
After the invasion of the Soviet Union by German forces in 1941, George finds himself on the Virtuous’s most perilous journey yet, as it forms part of a convoy heading to Russia. Hunted by Nazi U-boats, surface ships and the Luftwaffe, the crew must endure its greatest foe – the harsh Arctic weather. With temperatures dropping to minus 30 degrees Centigrade and violent storms threatening to sink the ship, George endures the harsh reality of war, whilst at the same time pondering his uneasy relationship with the mysterious Glenda, the girl he has left behind.

Ninth book: Flood by Ann Swinfen is historical fiction set in the Fenlands during the seventeenth century.

Book blurb –

Violence, greed and betrayal threaten the remote communities of East Anglia in the seventeenth century, when ruthless and unscrupulous speculators steal their common lands, while fanatic Puritans bring accusations of heresy and witchcraft. Granddaughter of a local hero, Mercy Bennington moves out of the shadow of her elder brother to become a leader of the protestors, finding the strength to confront the enemies who endanger the survival of her village and her own life. Yet the violence wreaked upon the fragile fenlands unleashes a force no one can control – flood.

Tenth book: The Heretic Heir by G. Lawrence is Tudor historical fiction and features the lives of Mary and Elizabeth.

Book blurb –

February 1603, the last of the Tudor monarchs is dying, but Death must wait for Elizabeth of England to finish her tale…

As The Bastard Princess, Elizabeth Tudor, daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, has fought through a childhood of intrigue and peril to her place as the heir to the English throne. But as her sister, Mary I, the first anointed and sole Queen of England takes the crown, Elizabeth must face her most dangerous challenges yet… for Mary I is determined to return England to the Catholic faith, and will have none stand in her way.

Protestant Elizabeth knows that she must survive the suspicions and distrust of her sister, in a reign where rebellion and war freely stalked the lands of England.
To survive, this heretic heir must hone her skills in survival, wit and wile, in order that she may one day… become Queen.

Eleventh book: The Alchemical Detective by Kirsten Weiss is book one of a paranormal mystery series.

Book blurb –

This metaphysical detective has a murder to solve. But will a devilishly handsome casino owner get in the way?

There’s a storm on the horizon. Riga’s lost her magic and has come to Lake Tahoe for a fresh start and to spend quality time with her new love. But life for a metaphysical detective is never that simple.

Someone’s killing psychics in Lake Tahoe, and the police think Riga may be connected to the murders. The best way to prove her innocence? Catch the killer herself… if she can escape the monster-hunting “reality” show she’s committed to for long enough. And as the killer circles closer, she may become his next target…

If you love talking gargoyles, smart mysteries, and mature heroines with complicated lives, you’ll love this series.

I would happily recommend all these books to others.

#6Degrees Of Separation Book Challenge From Where The Wild Things Are To The Heretic Heir

My July #6 Degrees Challenge

Hosted by Kate from Books Are My Favourite And Best The idea is to start at the same book as other readers, then find themes that link six books, and see where you end up!

The starting point for July is Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

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A classic children’s book.

One night Max puts on his wolf suit and makes mischief of one kind and another, so his mother calls him ‘Wild Thing’ and sends him to bed without his supper. 

That night a forest begins to grow in Max’s room and an ocean rushes by with a boat to take Max to the place where the wild things are.

Max tames the wild things and crowns himself as their king, and then the wild rumpus begins!

But when Max has sent the monsters to bed, and everything is quiet, he starts to feel lonely and realises it is time to sail home to the place where someone loves him best of all.

My first link is to another book where a child visits another world to escape reality.

Children’s fiction The Greying by Dallas Sutherland

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Landland cries out for a saviour… 

Upon the death of her mother, Meah is pulled across the boundary that separates this world and another time and place where the dog-like Firbog have brought the mists of the greying. Under the evil Queen Berilbog they threaten to claim all the lands.

With her Mother dead and her Father missing – she is on her own! Can Meah learn how to use the power of the thinking? Will there be enough time to save both Landland and herself? Will Meah ever find her way home again?

My next link is from the thinking and I chose,

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, because one of my favourite parts was the ‘eat me, drink me food and drink that Alice had to really think about.

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After a tumble down the rabbit hole, Alice finds herself far away from home in the absurd world of Wonderland. As mind-bending as it is delightful, Lewis Carroll’s 1865 novel is pure magic for young and old alike.

Which leads me to my third book and a twist on the classic and a young adult fantasy

Death Of The Mad Hatter by Sarah J. Pepper

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Never in my wildest dreams did I consider the possibility that I could fall for the boy with the girl’s name. Why couldn’t Ryley have bacne, chronic case of nose bleeds, genetic baldness, or uncontrollable gingivitis? Oh no, he had to be perfect in every way. And, that body… Nuff said. It was all I could do to convince my knees not to weaken at the sight of him. Forming coherent words when he spoke my name was dang near impossible.

Perhaps if his frontal lobe was a teensy weensy smaller, I might have been able to convince myself that he wasn’t so intellectually stimulating. But, he was stimulating,in more ways than one; there was no denying that; no matter how badly I tried to hate him, I couldn’t. That made what I was about to do so delightfully horrible that even the wicked Queen of Hearts would be impressed–Alice Mae.

My next link is to a wicked queen and an urban fantasy series.

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Grave Destiny by Kalayna Price is book #6 of the Alex Craft series and if they interest you I would recommend reading he books in order. However, for this challenge book six fits well. Alex is a grave witch, she speaks to the dead. In this book she must endure the wrath of the Winter Queen of the fae courts while she investigates a politically sensitive murder.

My fifth book link is to sensitive politics and a genre leap to historical drama.

Kings and Queens by Terry Tyler is a modern take on the life of Henry VIII

Kings And Queens (Lanchester Book 1) by [Tyler, Terry]

Spanning the years 1971 – 2007, with an unusual echo from history …

“KINGS AND QUEENS” tells of the life and loves of charismatic Harry Lanchester, which just happen to mirror the story of Henry VIII and his six wives. All the passion and suspense of the Tudor court, but set in modern times.

Harry’s realm is his South of England property developing company, Lanchester Estates, while his ‘wives’ are the twentieth century sisters of their historic counterparts: Anne Boleyn is reincarnated as the equally intriguing Annette Hever, and Henry VIII’s fifth wife with the risqué past, Catherine Howard, lives again in 1999 as Keira Howard, a former lap dancer.

The saga is narrated by each of the six women, in turn, interspersed with short chapters from the point of view of Harry’s lifelong friend, Will Brandon.

Don’t worry if you know nothing of this period in history – “Kings and Queens” can be enjoyed as a contemporary family drama, very much in the vein of Ms Tyler’s previous novels. Readers with an interest in the Tudors, though, will pick up on many similarities, references and metaphors, some quite amusing.

My final link stays with historical fiction and the Tudors and is for The Heritic Heir by G. Lawrence

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February 1603, the last of the Tudor monarchs is dying, but Death must wait for Elizabeth of England to finish her tale…

As The Bastard Princess, Elizabeth Tudor, daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, has fought through a childhood of intrigue and peril to her place as the heir to the English throne. But as her sister, Mary I, the first anointed and sole Queen of England takes the crown, Elizabeth must face her most dangerous challenges yet… for Mary I is determined to return England to the Catholic faith, and will have none stand in her way.

Protestant Elizabeth knows that she must survive the suspicions and distrust of her sister, in a reign where rebellion and war freely stalked the lands of England.
To survive, this heretic heir must hone her skills in survival, wit and wile, in order that she may one day… become Queen.

If you’d like to join this challenge the starting book for August 3rd is a wild card – start with the book you’ve ended your July chain with (for those playing for the first time, start with the last book you finished reading).