Finishing School Series by Gail Carriger

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The Finishing School series, by Gail Carriger, is set in the same world as her previous series, the Parasol Protectorate. The first two books are Etiquette and Espionage, and Curtsies and Conspiracies. The Finishing School Series has been adopted as Teen Fiction but will be enjoyed by anyone who loves to read paranormal fiction.

The heroine of the series is Sophronia Temminnick, a 14 year old girl whose mother wants very badly for her to go to finishing school and learn to become a young debutante and lady of society. Sophronia, however, would much prefer her usual activities : spying on people, climbing the dumb waiter shaft, playing with newfangled inventions…When the headmistress for a finishing school appears with the intention of taking Sophronia away with her, the young woman has very mixed feelings. But Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality is not quite what it seems…The school is actually a training academy for espionage operatives-just for young ladies of course, the boys have their own school.

Sophronia has finally found her calling in life, but there are some mysteries aboard the floating school that she cannot resist sorting out for herself-especially in this new world where she is surrounded by paranormal beings. These novels are very fun, and the audiobooks are really enjoyable too.

 

Innocent Blood by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell

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Paranormal readers may recall The Blood Gospel, by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell, in which Archaeologist Erin Granger is pulled into an ancient prophecy and a world of vampires, angels, and other supernatural beings she never could have dreamed existed. Innocent Blood is the second installment in this series, called The Order of The Sanguines.

Erin finds that her role in saving the universe is not over-she may still be the “Woman of Learning” in the prophecy, this time she has to prevent the Apocalypse and destruction of the entire earth. She must stop the supernatural being called Iscariot from bringing ruin to the whole of humanity, using her knowledge of ancient biblical history. The old gang from The Blood Gospel is back, holy men from the Vatican, the Warrior-but just to shake things up, she must deal with a psychopathic killer vampire, perhaps the most formidable female in history, natural or supernatural…Elizabeth Bathory, The Blood Countess.

Will they prevail? Find out for yourself if you like reading supernatural fiction, especially if you have a taste for a more “Dan Brown suspense” type of read.

Paranormal Romance of 2012

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Vampires, Werewolves, Angels, Fallen Angels, Demons, Witches, Fairies, Pixies, Gods and Goddesses, the genre of paranormal romance, which took the world by storm some years ago, is still going strong, with a devoted following. Here are some authors and some of their 2012 releases, for those of you who try to keep up.

Kerrelyn Sparks’ Wild About You (Love at Stake #13) brings you Elsa Bjornberg, home renovating TV personality with a family curse brought upon her, and the Were Bear, Howard, who will stop at nothing to have her.

Sable Grace’s Chosen (Dark Breed #3) stars half-vampire, half lychen Kyana, a warrior protecting the earth from supernatural takeover who is in love with a supreme being.

Lynsay Sands’ The Lady is a Vamp (Argeneau #17), in which Vampire Jeanne Louise Argeneau is kidnapped by a man who doesn’t realize just what he’s getting himself into, and the connection between the two becomes more important than anything in the world.

Juliana Stone’s King of the Damned (League of Guardians #2) introduces a fallen Angel, Azaiel, who wants more than anything to atone for his past mis-deeds and comes across sexy Witch, Rowan, bringing them both into a quest to avoid damnation for once and for all.

If you love paranormal romance novelists like Laurel K Hamilton, Kim Harrison, Pamela Palmer, etc, and you haven’t tried one or all of these authors, be sure to give them a sampling and decide if they will be your next paranormal romance obsession!

Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness

Diana Bishop is back in the second installment in the All Souls Trilogy-the first book of which was called A Discovery of Witches and was insanely popular among paranormal romance readers. In Shadow of Night, Diana and the sexy vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont have time traveled back to Elizabethan England to find the famous manuscript, Ashmole 782,  that started the saga in the first novel. Diana and Matthew must get the manuscript to keep it out of the wrong hands, and every supernatural creature wants the book for his kind, and is willing to take out Diana and Matthew in the process-but the hero and heroine are determined to save the supernatural world by preserving the book and the current status quo between the species.

Christopher Marlowe, William Shakespeare, Queen Elizabeth, and MANY other historical figures make their way into the plot of the story, so if you love historical fiction, you will be tickled by the references made and the excellent attention to detail that the author, Deborah Harkness, is well-known for. If you read the first novel, you won’t want to miss the second, and if you haven’t, I suggest you start from the beginning!

Readers who enjoyed The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane, by Katherine Howe, and The Witch’s Daughter, by Paula Brackston, will love the A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night. Paranormal romance with a touch of history and elements of magic with hints of time travel….

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Clary Fray is a teenage girl with normal teenage problems-or so she thinks. One evening, in a dance club, she witnesses a murder-and her entire reality becomes a lie. Living right beside her, her entire life, have been supernatural beings threatening to war against one another. The disappearance of her mother, followed by an encounter with a horrible monster in her own apartment draw her in to a world unlike anything she has ever known.

This Young Adult/Teen novel is the first novel of The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. Clary befriends The Shadowhunters in an alliance to find her mother and bring balance back to the universe, fighting against a grave enemy that is connected to her in a way she would never imagine. If you love this series, be sure to check out her Infernal Devices series, which is set in the same fantasy world.

If you are the type of adult who enjoys a good teen paranormal fiction novel (Twilight, etc), then you won’t want to miss this series, which has family values, friendship, a touch of romance, and a whole lot of good versus evil…

Darkest London Series by Kristen Callihan

Paranormal romance lovers (you know who you are), you have probably run through Laurell K. Hamilton, Kim Harrison, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Lynsay Sands, the works…And you may even be wondering if the genre has much else to squeeze out. Kristen Callihan has written a new series, The Darkest London series, which will be a pleasant surprise. Especially if you are a lover of all things British-this series is set in London (obviously) during the Victorian era. But the London in Callihan’s series is a London ripe with paranormal beings who lurk in the shadows and hide from polite society.

The first novel in the series, Firelight, is about a young woman who marries a Lord by arrangement to settle her father’s debts…A lord who wears a mask and has a mysterious past. Can Miranda learn to love this stranger? Will she learn his secrets? Someone is murdering gentlemen in the night streets of London-is Lord Archer, her new husband, involved somehow?

The second novel in the series, Moonglow, is about a young widow who is being pursued by something dark and evil-something murderous. Women who wear her perfume are dropping dead all over the city, and a sexy nobleman has decided to help keep her safe until the demon is captured…But will Daisy be safe from him?

There are more novels to come in this series, which many readers will find addicting. If you liked Gail Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate series, you will NOT want to miss the Darkest London series by Kristen Callihan. Hachette Audio has come out with Firelight and Moonglow on Audio, as well, and those of you who enjoy listening to your paranormal romance should pick them up today-and they are steamy, so if you are prude, be warned!

God Save the Queen by Kate Locke

Paranormal Romance meets Steampunk in the first in the Immortal Empire series, staring Xandra, a Royal Guard for her majesty whose sister has just gone missing. In her determination to find out the truth, this saucy british half-vamp faces Goblins, Werewolves, Vampires, and more…And she can’t quite decide who wants her dead among them. Friends and enemies have so much in common-hunger for human flesh being on the list.

Surprise alliances shake Xandra to her core, and a discovery of a secret underground group set out to overthrow the Aristocracy, a sexy werewolf pack leader, and a very creepy Goblin prince are only the beginning of the head-spinning violence and intrigue that fills the pages of this novel.

If you loved The Parasol Protectorate series, by Gail Carriger, then without a doubt, you should pick up this novel immediately. If you think that a British “Anita Blake” sounds like something you might like to try out, the fantasy world created by Kate Locke is elaborate and well thought-out. If you are not really a fan of either “steampunk” or “paranormal romance” then it probably won’t be your “cup of tea”. Pick up God Save the Queen today, if you think you can handle it!

The audiobook is also an EXCELLENT option for those of you who like to listen to paranormal romance. I listened to it while I was painting my house and enjoyed every minute.

Hidden Things by Doyce Testerman

One night, Calliope Jenkins, P.I., gets a phone call from her business partner that changes her life forever. There was nothing special about the phone call, just a check-in while he was on a job in the middle of the night. When the police appear on her doorstep claiming that her partner is likely dead, and they have found a body that may be his, Calliope refuses to believe it. She even has a voicemail from Josh that was received an hour AFTER the body was found. Something suspicious is happening and Calliope is about to take on an investigation that hits very close to home. A homeless man who seems to be wearing clown makeup keeps appearing wherever Calliope goes, and she is getting tired of kicking his butt. When she finally listens to the man, she agrees to take his advice and follow some clues that will let her know just what happened to Josh.

Reality begins to blur, as Calliope realizes that there is much more to the world than she has been led to believe. There are secret doorways into other worlds, monsters hiding in plain sight, dragons and fantastical creatures in the most mundane places, like karaoke bars and rest stops. Can Calliope get past the obstacles along the way in time to save her partner? Can it all be real? If Josh is actually dead, what does he want from her, that he would call her from beyond the grave?

Readers who loved these:

Neil Gaiman’s “Neverwhere

John Connolly’s “The Book of Lost Things

Christopher Moore’s “Practical Demonkeeping

Ransom Riggs’ “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

Will adore Doyce Testerman’s Hidden Things“, which combines urban fantasy with dark sarcasm in perfect proportion. This reviewer was actually sad that the book was over-I wanted to know what else that fantasy world had to offer a girl! This novel is not for the average reader, but for the few who can appreciate dark humor and fantasy. If you think this may be a book you want to try, based on my description, then absolutely DO NOT miss it.