Review: All the Little Children by Jo Furniss

All the Little Children

Jo Furniss

None of the characters in All the Little Children are as likeable or believable as The Wolf Road‘s Elka, but they serve their purpose well: to give us someone to root for as the story moves forward, with tragedy after tragedy.

Like the brilliant The Wolf RoadAll the Little Children tells the story of ordinary people caught out in extraordinary events; a devastated land shaping the characters more than any backstory or exposition ever could. A family out camping in the woods manages to survive an apocalyptic event that ravages the cities, and All the Little Children follows the family as they try to find refuge in this new world.

It is a good — not great — read, with a story that moves briskly forward, with a couple of unbelievable deus ex machina that grinds everything to a screeching halt. Most notably, the ending — though it’s revealed that the story will be continued in a sequel, the conclusion was very unsatisfying and the last chapter felt like a rushed first draft of a longer book.

All in all, a decent first showing for debuting author Jo Furniss. Here’s hoping for a stronger second part to this story.

 

Read/Don’t Read Verdict: Read — but wait for the sequel to tie everything together

Three Books to Read in August 2017

This August is a slow month for spec-lit releases, but there’s still new titles to look forward to. These are the three books I can’t wait to read in August 2017:

August 15th

The Stone Sky (The Broken Earth 3)

N. K. Jemisin

The Stone Sky (The Broken Earth) by [Jemisin, N. K.]

N. K. Jemisin’s excellent post-apocalyptic fantasy trilogy concludes with The Stone Sky on the 15th. The first two books in the Broken Earth trilogy were filled with a detailed, dangerous world and I’m both excited for and sad about the end of this series.

August 22nd

The Massacre of Mankind

Stephen Baxter

Its been nearly 120 years since War of the Worlds was published, and this month we’ll see what happens after the alien invasion in Stephen Baxter’s authorized sequel, The Massacre of Mankind.

August 31st

Golden Age and Other Stories

Naomi Novik

With the conclusion of Naomi Novik’s Temeraire series, fans of her alt-history fantasy world that fills the Napoleonic wars with dragons can rejoice in the release of Golden Age and Other Stories, a short fiction collection set in the same world.

StoryBundle: SF&F Binge Reader Bundle

StoryBundle

The latest StoryBundle offers over 25 sci-fi/fantasy novels and short story anthologies for the full bundle purchase minimum of $15. If you’re running low on summer reading, this might be a good opportunity to beef up your eBook collection and try out some new authors. Get the bundle here!

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Review: The Wolf Road by Beth Lewis

The Wolf Road

Beth Lewis

The post-apocalyptic world in The Wolf Road is fascinating but always in the background, and that’s okay, because the characters — especially Elka — are so captivating that the end-of-the-world setting just drops away.

The Wolf Road follows a young girl named Elka, who is one of the strongest female characters I’ve encountered in fiction, shaped by a tragic past in a tragic world. Her growth throughout the story is believable. She is independent, likeable, and flawed: a heroine that readers should get to know.

Elka loses her way as a very young girl and is adopted by a mysterious man she comes to know as Trapper and over a span of years, we see her grow from a precocious child to a precocious adult. She learns how to survive in the wilderness — in ways meticulously detailed by the author — but of course, Things happen and Elka finds herself on a journey filled with memorable characters and other Things that happen.

There are a few twists; some are predictable, some are not. The writing is smooth and the dialogue flows. This is a book that’s easy and fun to read. Go read it and fall in love with Elka.

Read/Don’t Read Verdict: READ IT!

Five Books to Read in July 2017

Four fantasy and sci-fi titles arrive this month to help you celebrate the summer and include a continuation of a long-running urban fantasy series and the conclusion of a dark fantasy series. These are the four books you should read this July.

July 11th 2017

Dichronauts

Greg Egan

Dichronauts by [Egan, Greg]

I don’t understand most of the science going on in Greg Egan’s books, but I enjoy them nonetheless. Dichronauts, which releases July 11th, looks to be more of the hard sci-fi fare that Egan is known for.

Bannerless (The Bannerless Saga 1)

Carrie Vaughn

Bannerless (The Bannerless Saga) by [Vaughn, Carrie]

Bannerless combines post-apocalyptic dystopia with murder mystery — fans of either genre of fiction will be interested in this book, which releases on the 11th.

The Delirium Brief (Laundry Files 8)

Charles Stross

Spies, magic, laughs — the books in Charles Stross’s Laundry Files never disappoint. The latest entry in the series, The Delirium Briefreleases on the 11th of the month.

July 18th, 2017

Strange Dogs

James S. A. Corey

Strange Dogs: An Expanse Novella (The Expanse) by [Corey, James S. A.]

Strange Dogs, a novella set in the Expanse universe, is here to sate our thirst while we anxiously await the release of book 7 of James S. A. Corey’s space saga.

July 25th, 2017

The Unholy Consult (Aspect-Emperor 4)

R. Scott Bakker

The Unholy Consult: The Aspect-Emperor: Book Four by [Bakker, R. Scott]

R. Scott Bakker is one of those rare dark fantasy writers who complete their books in a timely fashion and release them as scheduled. On the 25th, The Unholy Consult concludes the Aspect-Emperor series.