Three by Jay Posey


Three by Jay Posey is a high-tech post-apoc adventure story and to be quite honest if you don’t run out and buy it right now we are no longer friends.

 Three is a well put together story, with enough complexity to carry the narrative yet not so much it gets confusing. The characters are well-drawn and complex, the world is a fascinating, interesting one.

 And above all that, for me, is that Jay Posey is just a damn good writer. He knows when to be poetic and when to be straightforward. He is never unclear or confusing. He describes things in a way that is fresh and new without being tortured or confusing.

 I have been forcing this book on everyone I meet. I have reread it and reread it. My copy is falling part already.

 If I have a problem with it it’s that the basic story is a fairly common one, especially in westerns. Jay Posey seems to have taken a lot of inspiration from westerns for this book, not that it’s a failing. But we have our tough, no-nonsense bounty hunter with a secret protecting a woman and her child from bad people. It’s been done. But the thing is, it works. It works because Posery adds twists and turns it on its head. It works because of the fascinating new post-apocalyptic world.

 I’m very impressed.

4.5/5

 You have a chance to win one of TWO copies of Three by Jay Posey.

 
“Each stop on this Blog Tour of Three by Jay Posey has a unique question.  Be sure to enter your answers into the giveaway by dropping by My Shelf Confessions  and enter your answers in the rafflecopter widget! You can answer as many or as few as you like as each answered question gets you an extra entry!

Here’s the question for my stop: Question #2  When does Three release in the US?”

Later in the week, I’ll post an interview with Jay

 
 

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In summary, you should read The Accidental Demon Slayer by Angie Fox

Jack Russell Terrier with ball.
Jack Russell Terrier with ball. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Did the title spoil it? I like to let the headline tell the story while everything else is supporting details. Speaking of details and headlines telling stories –spoiler alert—you might already know how the The Accidental Demon Slayer[1. This book was provided for review by the publisher]
ends…
Fortunately, the ending isn’t why I’d recommend The Accidental Demon Slayer.
Angie Fox managed to write a convincing up-tight preschool teacher, gang of biker geriatrics, and talking Jack Russell Terrier.
Throughout this action-adventure-comedy Lizzie, the protagonist, is making choices and thinking with reason that makes sense to normal humans regardless of Urban Fantasy tropes.
She’s suspicious of the motives of those professing to be Team Lizzie and concerned for the welfare of her dog. She accepts that this story is happening to her but not without question and not without a fight.
I appreciated that Lizzie was never really a damsel in distress so much as a damsel dealing with distress.
Demons are trying to kill her so they can take over the earth and she finds this wholly irritating. She has plans, and a job, and would much rather be wearing her self-styled uniform from The Gap.
The Accidental Demon Slayer wasn’t perfect, but it was great fun. Check the pros and cons below.
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Book review: The Mad Scientist's Guide to World Domination

Mad-Scientist-Cvr_091312
The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination: Original Short Fiction for the Modern Evil Genius

Editor: John Joseph Adams
Genre: Science Fiction Anthology
Publisher: Tor
Note: This review is being published simultaneously on Char’s blog, Apocalypse Mama, and here on In Case of Survival.
Blurb: 

Mad scientists have never had it so tough. In super-hero comics, graphic novels, films, TV series, video games and even works of what may be fiction, they are besieged by those who stand against them, devoid of sympathy for their irrational, megalomaniacal impulses to rule, destroy or otherwise dominate the world as we know it.
Dr. Frankenstein was the first truly mad scientist of the modern era. And where did it get him? Destroyed by his own creation. And Jules Verne’s Captain Nemo, a man ahead of his time as well as out of his head, what did he do to deserve persecution?
Even Lex Luthor, by all counts a genius, has been hindered not once, not twice, but so many times that it has taken hundreds of comic books, a few films and no fewer than ten full seasons of a television series to keep him properly thwarted.
It’s just not fair. So those of us who are so twisted and sick that we love mad scientists have created this guide. Some of the names have been changed to protect the guilty, but you’ll recognize them. But it doesn’t matter. This guide is not for you. It’s for them, the underhanded, over-brained, paranoiacs who so desperately need our help.
What lies behind those unfocused, restless eyes and drooling, wicked grins? Why–and how–do they concoct their nefarious plots? Why are they so set on taking over the world? If you’ve ever asked yourself any of these questions, you’re in luck: Because we are exposing their secrets, aiding and abetting their evil. It all awaits, within.
Watch out, world!

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Review: A Departure by Tom Ward

A Departure by Tom Ward is a post-apocalyptic coming of age story.

In a heartbeat
Michael’s life is good.
He’s in love and about to leave home for university. Things couldn’t be better.
Then a natural disaster hits Britain.
With his family and friends dead, and no help forthcoming from the government, Michael sets off, alone, aiming to reach the potential safety of the continent. Along the way, he forges a new family amongst the ruins of England when he is joined by former teacher, David, parish council head, Judith, and Zanna, a student.
As the group travels south, what remains of society deteriorates around them, revealing the darkest aspects of human desire. Amongst so much darkness, Michael must fight to uphold his own ideals.
A tale of coming of age on a road where rules no longer apply

A good, but flawed book.
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Review: After the Ending by Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue

After the Ending by Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue is the first in The Ending Series. A post-apocalyptic book focusing on two women.

The Virus spread. Billions died. The Ending began. We may have survived the apocalypse, but the Virus changed us.
When people started getting sick, “they” thought it was just the flu. My roommate, my boyfriend, my family…they’re all gone now. I got sick too. I should have died with them, but I didn’t. I thought witnessing the human population almost disappear off the face of the earth was the craziest thing I’d ever experience. I was wrong. My name is Dani, I’m twenty-six-years-old, and I survived The Ending.
The Virus changed everything. The world I knew is gone, and life is backwards. We’ve all had to start over. I’m someone else now—broken and changed. Other survivors’ memories and emotions haunt me. They invade my mind until I can no longer separate them from my own. I won’t let them consume me. I can’t. My name is Zoe, I’m twenty-six-years-old, and I survived The Ending.
We’ve been inseparable for most of our lives, and now our friendship is all we have left. The aftermath of the Virus has stranded us on opposite sides of the United States. Trusting strangers, making sacrifices, killing—we’ll do anything to reach one another.

This was, sadly, a bit of a disappointment.
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Review: 'Set, By Luke Walker.

‘Set by Luke Walker   is a horror novel with supernatural and apocalyptic elements.

Between Heaven and Hell, there is another world. To save her daughter’s soul, Emma Cooper will tear that world apart.
After the loss of her baby, Emma Cooper feels as if she’s just going through the motions of her life. That’s until an angel and demon knock at her door with news dwarfing life and death.
Emma’s daughter’s soul is trapped in a world of the dead, a world of permanent sunset. This is ‘Set and it’s to this world that Emma must travel after she is chosen by the celestial and infernal management. By working with Above and Below, she has a chance of helping her daughter and countless other souls move on from ‘Set.
In this world, recently deceased George Bryson has declared war on Heaven and Hell. But this fight with his maker has opened doors he cannot close. The forgotten remnants of Creation are coming to consume all worlds. If Emma can’t stop Bryson’s war, her daughter will be lost forever.
And so will everybody else.

Double special today: Not only was ‘Set provided to me free by Luke Walker, but Luke and I know each other from online. I do not intend this to bias my review, but it’s possible I will subconsciously treat this more kindly than a book from a stranger, so be aware.
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REVIEW: Wool by Hugh Howey

Wool by Hugh Howey is set in a post-apocalyptic world where people live in vast, underground silos.

In a ruined and hostile landscape, in a future few have been unlucky enough to survive, a community exists in a giant underground silo.
 Inside, men and women live an enclosed life full of rules and regulations, of secrets and lies.
 To live, you must follow the rules. But some don’t. These are the dangerous ones; these are the people who dare to hope and dream, and who infect others with their optimism.
 Their punishment is simple and deadly. They are allowed outside.
 Jules is one of these people. She may well be the last.

Review copy provided by Random House through NetGalley
A note: This is actually the Wool omnibus, collecting  Novellas 1-5 of the series originally self-published by Howey. I’m new to the wonderful world of Wool, which is shocking considering my status as one of the main reviewers at In Case of Survival. However, it has a lot of what I like in a series – a female protagonist, a post-apocalyptic world, an assault against oppressive regimes. These things are my catnip. So, how does it pan out for me?
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Apocalypse by Dean Crawford

A private Learjet filled with scientists travels across the ocean toward Miami. As it passes through the Bermuda Triangle, strange effects disturb the instruments and violent weather envelops the aircraft until it plummets out of control and vanishes without trace.
In Miami, Sheriff Kyle Sears arrives at a murder scene. A woman and her daughter have both been shot through the head. But while Sears is still on the scene he receives a phone call from the woman’s husband. With uncanny accuracy, he predicts the immediate future just as it unfolds around Sears, before revealing that he, too, will be murdered within 24 hours. The man gives him the name of someone he must contact. Ethan Warner.
As Ethan Warner and his partner Nicola Lopez race to investigate, they are thrown into the centre of a mind-boggling plot to blow a hole in the space-time continuum.
I’m not normally that ‘in’ to thrillers, even science based ones where the consequences of failure could mean the end of the world. But I got into this one.
I can’t really give you an intelligent review. I can’t tell you what I liked and what I didn;t and why, because instead of reading this thing critically (like I usually do for reviews) I just devoured it. It was pure enjoyment for me – hight staked with interesting characters and some damn good science in the background.
A flaw my intensely feminist upbringing wouldn’t allow me NOT to spot was the constant use of male gaze on all the female characters, but I understand that this is a common device in thrillers. I’m just not sure why it’s important that an incredibly competent, driven woman with a well-defined personality is constantly referred to in terms of how ‘hot’ she is.
A flaw my literature-orientated mind wouldn’t allow me to ignore was the way the prose sometimes wandered off the path of ‘competent but nothing special’ and into the thorny brambles of ‘lolwhut?’. But it didn’t do this often enough to ruin my fun, and it’s a pretty chunky book, so no big.
The thing is, that normally these two flaws, especially together, would normally be enough to get my patented ‘really?’ reaction, where I get pulled out of the world of the story and -worst case scenario – start to mock the book. Something similar happened with ‘Her Fearful Symmetry’ when my final review was one dismissive sentence. But nope, not here. The critical part of me (Huge) was overwhelmed by the part of me that just likes to be entertained by a damn good story.
Four out of five, kiddies. Read this book.
Also, stay tuned for an interview with Dean later today.

Book review: The Facebook Diet by Gemini Adams


The Facebook Diet by Gemini Adams
Release date: January 30, 2013
Publisher: Living Consciously Publishing
Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for this review.
Also note that this review is being posted on both Apocalypse Mama and In Case of Survival.
Blurb:

There are now 1 billion people on Facebook. That’s 1 in every 7 people on the planet. And 34% of all users check their account before brushing their teeth or hair in the mornings!  
Everyone can confess to an addictive Facebook habit, whether it’s stalking an ex, faking bathroom breaks to read news, checking-in wherever they go, or art-directing photo’s for the perfect profile pic.
The Facebook Diet (the first in The Unplug Series) takes a tongue-in-cheek look at this love for social media, featuring 50 hilarious cartoons that pinpoint the more idiotic, embarrassing and cringe-worthy behaviors of this modern approach to communication.   It’s the ideal gift for Facebook junkies everywhere. Helping them find light-relief and the ability to laugh at this tech-takeover, which may inspire them to occasionally unplug with a tech-detox.

 
What I liked:

  • The humorous look at the Facebook addiction
  • The illustrations

What I didn’t like:

  • The length (it was awfully short)
  • While it was funny, I have to admit there were parts I didn’t enjoy as much

The review:
So this is a cute little book. It’s a humorous take on people’s addiction to Facebook (which some people doubtless have). There are illustrations for each of the points the author makes; in my opinion, the illustrations are the best part of the book. And really, this book could be about anyone with a tech addiction, be it online gaming, Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, Twitter, or whatever else is out there on the Interwebs.
From my understanding, the point the author is trying to make is not that we’re all addicted and at the mercy of Mark Zuckerberg (that may just be a side effect). Rather, Gemini Adams’ point is that we should all take the time every now and again to just unplug. Turn off the computer. Put the phone down. Go see a movie, watch TV, read a book. Or heck, go talk to that other adult living in your house. You know, the one standing next to you in that picture on your wall — that picture, the big one, the one people say is of you on your wedding day.
I laughed at many of the points because it describes me on a lot of days, albeit with Twitter, not Facebook. (Not gonna lie, Twitter is my mind-crack. Sorry, Mr. Zuckerberg.) However, that being said, some of the humor just didn’t resonate with me. Humor is a very subjective thing, though; while I didn’t find much of the book funny, you might.
In any case, anyone who’s ever used Facebook should give this one a flip-through. The illustrations are great.
Rating: 3 out of 5

Book review: Existence by David Brin

Existence book cover

Existence by David Brin

Release date: June 2012

Publisher: Tor

Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher.

Amazon blurb:

Bestselling, award-winning futurist David Brin returns to globe-spanning, high concept SF with Existence. 

Gerald Livingston is an orbital garbage collector. For a hundred years, people have been abandoning things in space, and someone has to clean it up. But there’s something spinning a little bit higher than he expects, something that isn’t on the decades’ old orbital maps. An hour after he grabs it and brings it in, rumors fill Earth’s infomesh about an “alien artifact.” 
Thrown into the maelstrom of worldwide shared experience, the Artifact is a game-changer. A message in a bottle; an alien capsule that wants to communicate. The world reacts as humans always do: with fear and hope and selfishness and love and violence. And insatiable curiosity.

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