Heist (L is for Librarian Book 2) by Tom Bruno

“So the Library, eh?  You’re the guys who travel through time and steal books.”

More librarians in space – in this episode, exploring the limits of space-time, trying to cheat the Muse of History without triggering a Hawking crisis!  I’m really enjoying the L is for Librarian books. Not quite a series, each book is unrelated except by topic. In this book, future librarians travel back in time to rescue the holdings of the great Library of Alexandria before they’re destroyed.

I actually referenced the predecessor to this book (Bibliophile, L is for Librarian Book 1) in my own book (Self-Publishing and Libraries) as an example of the micro-niche of self-published books by librarians about librarians! I was thrilled to discover that it was part of a series.

The attention to historical detail in this episode and the neat little intertwining anachronisms really made this story a lot of fun. Fans (and alums) of Harvard will find this especially entertaining:

“….Harvard College Library’s collections, which at the time were overflowing their designated holding place at Gore Hall.  Widener Library, it was called, a living tribute to Harvard alumnus and avid bibliophile Harry Widener, who had perished along with his father aboard the British passenger liner Titanic….”  Except, of course, that he hadn’t! Widener is one of the main characters, along with Mehmet Sohrabi, a classics scholar who, “wasn’t prepared for many aspects of time travel, but the worst of it in his opinion was the lack of coffee.”

This is a great, fun read!

 

Tomoiya’s Story: Escape To Darkness by C.A. King

It’s amazing how many variations there are on the vampire mythology. In this one, the Golden Vampires cry diamonds like the fairies’ midwife, Queen Mab, who appeared in Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet, then later resurfaced in the mini-series Merlin.

Tomoiya’s Story combines that quite old mythology with a space faring society in a tale that seems somewhat unanchored in time.  If many ways, this could represent the origin story for much of vampire mythology; although the space opera context would create a future-past conundrum.

Regardless, Allaynie’s Story as it leads into Tomoiya’s Story is chilling but not how you would probably expect. The real villains here aren’t the vampires but the media. King nails their role in no uncertain terms:

“News – the fastest way to spread fear and hate. Journalists circled like vultures – thinking they were somehow doing their world a service. In reality, all they do is play into the hands of men with well-constructed plans….”

Excellent read. I look forward to reading more in this series.

Family Night on Union Station (EarthCent Ambassador Book 12) by E. M. Foner

This is the twelfth book that I’ve read in this series, which pretty much says it all. The characters are witty and colorful. The subtle swipes at the silliness of bureaucracy and politics intertwined with truly entertaining species (like the Tree-form Frunge, the protocol driven Vergallians, and the single-minded Gem clones) are sincerely a hoot. And the author manages to create drama and excitement without the doom and gloom or violence that permeates so many other space operas. If you’re a fan of snarky British dramas, you’ll luv this series. It’s like Yes, Minister in space.

Snakes! (Discover Your World Series) by Michelle Zimmerman

Excellent early reader non-fiction book on a topic sure to hold the attention of little boys. I read this book with my 4- and 6-year-old grandsons. They were captivated! The photos were crisp and engaging — especially when the boys enlarged them to focus in on the fangs or the cobra’s hood. There were enough details to keep me interested (and learning!) along with the boys. This reminded me a lot of the New True books that I used to read with my own kids when they were little. Lots of facts presented simply but not dumbed down. Great combination.

This is the second book in this series that I’ve read with the grandkids this week. I hope to read more – as they’re written!

Bibliophile (L is for Librarian Book 1) by Tom Bruno

Bibliophile is an adorable little book – a sci-fi tale discussing the importance of librarians in space! I actually referenced this book in my own book (Self-Publishing and Libraries) as an example of the micro-niche of self-published books by librarians about librarians! (Ya gotta luv the symmetry!)

The book itself is a wonderful read. Between references to Emerson and Plato, you’ll find Neo-transcendentalist settlers and anarchist librarians on the outer rim. The references to “future” authors were in themselves a hoot. I found myself thinking that I’d kinda like to read, “Hesprus, a fantasy writer from the Lesser Magellanic Cloud whose works had developed a small but cult following.  His Robar Trilogy detailed the epic struggle of good versus evil on a planet where humanity had awoken from millennia of cryogenic slumber to find that their dreams had manifested themselves into reality while they’d slept.”

Overall I highly recommend this book and look forward to reading the next two installments (currently out) in this series. My only complaint here is that the author needs a better proofreader. While there are only a handful of typos (“operating” instead of “operator”, “offer” instead of “author”) a work this length really should be typo free.

39 pages

Escape From Hell by Shervin Jamali

“So this is what depression feels like.  Sinking in quicksand, with only the Devil extending a hand to pull you out.”

Wow! The first book in this series, The Devil’s Lieutenant, was awesome. This sequel continues the winning streak.  Here we follow Michael from Hell to Heaven and back again. A lot.

Sassy as ever! Our anti-hero tells it like it is:

“Did God send you to punish me for killing my parents, Michael?”

“No, Maddie,” I respond.  “Unfortunately, I work for the other guy.”

Along with saucy writing and a kick-bottom plot that twists more than a pinwheel, the author’s cashed in Geek cred with pop culture references to everything from Groundhog’s Day and Star Wars to The Sixth Sense.

Strongly recommend!