Welcome to Brian’s Book Blog’s weekly New and Notable Post for the Week of August 17th.
Comment below on any I missed or what you’re excited about!
Authors, narrators, producers, and publishers — any of the books featured here are prime candidates for review.
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Extinction Shadow by Nicholas Sansbury Smith, Anthony J. Melchiorri
Narrated by R.C. Bray
The top-rated hit series that sold a half-million copies returns in the next season of the Extinction Cycle. Welcome to the Dark Age!
Survivors thought the extinction cycle ended, but a powerful evil lurks in the shadows….
Eight years ago, an engineered virus ravaged the globe, infecting and transforming humans into apex predators called Variants. Billions died, civilization collapsed, and the human race teetered on the brink of extinction. Nations banded together and heroes rose up to fight these abominations. On the front lines, Captain Reed Beckham and Master Sergeant Joe “Fitz” Fitzpatrick of Delta Force Team Ghost fought against the Variant hordes. With the aid of CDC Doctor Kate Lovato, they helped lead humanity to victory.
Now, almost a decade after the end of the war, civilization has slowly clawed toward recovery. In the Allied States of America, survivors live in outposts where they have rebuilt industry, agriculture, and infrastructure. The remaining Variants are believed to be dying off under destroyed cities and the abandoned frontier.
But evil and intelligent forces dwell in the shadows with the starving beasts, scheming to restart the extinction cycle and end humanity forever. And once again, Beckham, Fitz, and Kate will rise to fight them, joining forces with new heroes to try and save what’s left of the world.
Second String Savior by Rick Gualtieri, R.E. Carr
Narrated by Andrea Emmes
Jessie Flores is having the ultimate bad hair day.
Imagine going to bed with mousy brown locks and waking up with a headful of supernova scarlet. It’s a hot new look for me – literally, because it bursts into flames whenever I’m threatened.
My magical makeover is all Gary’s fault. I knew there was something off from the moment he transferred to my school. Go figure. He’s a wizard with a trust fund and an inferiority complex.
Now, thanks to him, I’ve graduated from high school bullies to supernatural terrors and that’s not all. Fate has chosen me to face the legendary vampire destined to destroy the world.
If I want to survive, I’ll have to dig deep and discover whether I’m truly worthy of this new power. Because if not, everything I hold dear will soon burn even hotter than my hair.
Bloodstorm: A Dane and Bones Origin Story by David Wood, Sean Ellis
Narrated by Jeffrey Kafer
Twelve years ago, the novel Dourado by David Wood introduced the world to the treasure-hunting duo of Dane Maddock and “Bones” Bonebrake – former Navy SEALs on a quest to discover the strangest treasures of the ancient world. Over the course of more than twenty novels, you’ve lived their adventures from the beginning of their career as elite commandos to their battle against the worldwide conspiracy known as the Dominion.
Now, the time has come to tell the story of Dane and Bones’ final, shocking mission as Navy SEALs.
There will be blood….
While still mourning a great personal loss, Maddock and Bones are sent undercover to Moscow to assist an old acquaintance Zara Leopov, a navy intelligence officer. Leopov is orchestrating the defection of a Russian archivist who has discovered a crucial clue concerning the fate of a high-ranking Nazi official who went missing at the end of World War II, a man who may have carried with him the most sacred relic of the Third Reich.
The search to discover the truth will take Dane and Bones around the world and throw back the curtain on a conspiracy born in the early hours of the Cold War – a shadow government that is manipulating the global powers, driving them headlong into the storm.
Praise for David Wood and Sean Ellis:
“Bloodstorm takes us back to the beginning, weaving treasure-hunting SEALs Dane and Bones into a globe-spanning clash with Russian mobsters and the lost supernatural power of the Third Reich. If you like ancient artifacts, Nazi gold, and empire-ending conspiracies delivered like a punch to the teeth, you’ll love Wood and Ellis’ latest addition to the Dane Maddock universe.” (Taylor Zajonc, award-winning author of The Maw)
“Dane and Bones. Together they’re unstoppable. Rip-roaring action from start to finish. Wit and humor throughout. Just one question – how soon until the next one? Because I can’t wait.” (Graham Brown, author of Shadows of the Midnight Sun)
“What an adventure! A great read that provides lots of action, and thoughtful insight as well, into strange realms that are sometimes best left unexplored.” (Paul Kemprecos, author of Cool Blue Tomb and coauthor of the NUMA Files series)
“Ellis and Wood are a partnership forged in the fires of hell. Books don’t burn hotter than this!” (Steven Savile, author of the Ogmios thriller series)
Beyond by Ambrose Ibsen
Narrated by Joe Hempel
Erich Tellier died. Then, he came back to life….
On the night of a long-awaited comet sighting, Erich, a university student, comes back from the dead. Making a miraculous recovery after a horrific car accident, he quickly returns to his musical studies and seems to have a new zest for life. Though he mingles with his fellow students and dedicates himself to his work, those close to him can’t help but notice something is wrong, however.
Erich isn’t himself anymore. His personality has changed radically, and where he was once a middling musician, he’s suddenly and unaccountably developed a virtuosic talent. He spends his nights awake, walking the streets or throwing lavish parties.
What’s more, those who spend time alone with him tend to go insane.
Amid a string of suicides and government conspiracies, the denizens of Moorlake, Ohio find themselves at the center of a blossoming cosmic horror. If they don’t find out who – or what – Erich Tellier has become, the horror is bound to spread beyond the confines of their quiet college town.
Beyond is a supernatural thriller by Ambrose Ibsen.
Titan’s Fury by Rhett C. Bruno
Narrated by R.C. Bray
Independence comes at a high cost.
When Malcolm Graves finds himself in the clutches of the Titanborn, his plan to take Kale Trass down hits a wall. With the only family he has left threatened, he’s forced back into the service of another employer, only this time it’s not a corporation giving the orders. The future of the solar system hangs in the balance as Malcolm becomes the personal Collector for the Children of Titan.
The loss of a close friend has Kale rattled as the second stage in his plan to completely sever from Earth begins. Impossible missions, ruthless enemies, traitors in his midst – it will take everything in Kale’s power to keep the fight going. Maybe enough to break him…if he doesn’t break Sol first.
Will Titan finally gain its independence? Or has all the death and destruction been for nothing?
Find out how the Titan Conflict concludes in the explosive fourth installment of the Children of Titan Series!
The Memory Police by Yoko Ogawa, Stephen Snyder – translator
Narrated by Traci Kato-Kiriyama
A haunting Orwellian novel about the terrors of state surveillance, from the acclaimed author of The Housekeeper and the Professor.
On an unnamed island off an unnamed coast, objects are disappearing: first hats, then ribbons, birds, roses – until things become much more serious. Most of the island’s inhabitants are oblivious to these changes, while those few imbued with the power to recall the lost objects live in fear of the draconian Memory Police, who are committed to ensuring that what has disappeared remains forgotten.
When a young woman who is struggling to maintain her career as a novelist discovers that her editor is in danger from the Memory Police, she concocts a plan to hide him beneath her floorboards. As fear and loss close in around them, they cling to her wiring as the last way of preserving the past.
A surreal, provocative fable about the power of memory and the trauma of loss, The Memory Police is a stunning new work from one of the most exciting contemporary authors writing in any language.
Duplex by Kathryn Davis
Narrated by Elisabeth Rodgers
Mary and Eddie are meant for each other – but love is no guarantee, not in these suburbs. Like all children, they exist in an eternal present; time is imminent, and the adults of the street live in their assorted houses like numbers on a clock. Meanwhile, ominous rumors circulate, and the increasing agitation of the neighbors points to a future in which all will be lost. Soon a sorcerer’s car will speed down Mary’s street, and as past and future fold into each other, the resonant parenthesis of her girlhood will close forever. Beyond is adulthood, a world of robots and sorcerers, slaves and masters, bodies without souls.
In Duplex, Kathryn Davis, whom the Chicago Tribune has called “one of the most inventive novelists at work today”, has created a coming-of-age story like no other. Once you enter the duplex – that magical hinge between past and future, human and robot, space and time – there’s no telling where you might come out.
State of Lies by Siri Mitchell
Narrated by Kristen James
The secrets of those closest to us can be the most dangerous of all.
Months after her husband, Sean, is killed by a hit-and-run driver, physicist Georgie Brennan discovers he lied to her about where he had been going that day. A cryptic notebook, a missing computer, and strange noises under her house soon have her questioning everything she thought she knew.
With her job hanging by a thread, her son struggling to cope with his father’s death, and her four-star general father up for confirmation as the next Secretary of Defense, Georgie quickly finds herself tangled in a political intrigue that has no clear agenda and dozens of likely villains. Only one thing is clear: Someone wants her dead, too.
The more she digs for the truth, the fewer people she can trust.
Not her friends.
Not her parents.
Maybe not even herself.
Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh
Narrated by Adam Sims
The serial killer isn’t on trial. He’s on the jury.
It’s the murder trial of the century. And Joshua Kane has killed to get the best seat in the house – and to be sure the wrong man goes down for the crime. Because this time, the killer isn’t on trial. He’s on the jury.
But there’s someone on his tail. Former conman turned criminal-defense attorney Eddie Flynn doesn’t believe his movie-star client killed two people. He suspects the real killer is closer than they think – but who would guess just how close?
Praise for Thirteen:
“A brilliant, twisty, ingeniously constructed puzzle of a book. Steve Cavanagh pulls off an enviable premise with panache.” (Ruth Ware)
“Outstanding – an intriguing premise, a tense, gripping build-up, and a spectacular climax. This guy is the real deal. Trust me.” (Lee Child)
“A dead bang BEAST of a book that expertly combines Cavanagh’s authority on the law with an absolutely great thrill ride. Books this ingenious don’t come along very often.” (Michael Connelly)
Flynn’s World by Gregory Mcdonald
Narrated by Donald Corren
Inspector Francis Xavier Flynn, also known as international superspy N. N. 13, returns in this final book of the intelligently written, scintillating series by best-selling author Gregory Mcdonald.
Severely lacking in sleep from a recent bout of marathon investigative work, all Flynn wants is a proper night’s rest. Unfortunately, at the early morning summons of his frantic daughter, he’s off to the cemetery to rescue her young friend who’s in quite a peculiar bind. And as the day progresses, a curious collection of puzzling cases fall into Flynn’s lap, each one stranger and more urgent than the last.
As Flynn plunges into harm’s way in pursuit of the truth, buried secrets and dark motives come to light as he races to solve each crime and bring these seemingly disconnected matters to a full and complete case closed.
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