Thursday, May 30, 2013

Series, sagas and trilogies... and sequels too.

My favorite trilogy was the hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy--maybe the mathematician in me just got hooked on the idea of a trilogy in five--it certainly wasn't my ancient languages side anyway (though I did do Latin in high school--honest I did). But now the world's full of trilogies, series and sagas. I'm still dreaming one of my Hemlock prequels might make it into an anthology, or maybe my Hemlock trilogy, now threatening to grow into an Adamsian five, will find a publisher. D'you suppose actually sending it out would help? Or maybe finishing writing it? Still, my Five-Minute Bible Stories Series is growing healthily and I'm almost ready to send book six (the first New Testament book) to Cape Arago. I hope they'll like it...

And, of course, I'm still reading, though stomach bugs, bushes flattened in the rain, and copious amounts of shopping, cleaning and yardwork have rather held me back.

And, of course, the first book I'm posting a review for today is a trilogy.

The Forbidden Trilogy, by Kimberly Kinrade is reminiscent of X-Men or a darker, older Harry Potter, with gifted children in a school that's meant to train them for life but might turn out to have other plans. Books one and two are fairly short--Forbidden Mind and Forbidden Fire--but book three, Forbidden Life is long and complex with lots of characters and subplots. Enjoy this dark series with a dark 5-star cup of coffee.

Lagrange Point is the next in the Subspecies series by Mike Arsuaga, and there's plenty of future history and vampire lycan mythology to precede it. Family relationships have become singularly complex, as different generations age differently as well as possessing different natures. In this book, same and different species attractions are intriguingly balanced against same and different sex attraction. The sex scenes fit the novel's rating as erotic, but they're intriguingly balanced against thought-provoking questions of nature, nurture, and even free-will and God. Lagrange Point's not my favorite of the series, but it's another intriguing entry, tying up lots of loose ends while building together a host of different plotlines--best enjoyed with a complex 4-star coffee.

Peter and Paul, by Stan I. S. Law retells the Acts of the Apostles through the eyes of Peter and Paul. Tensions arise between men differently called and faith differently perceived. Peter falls back on a curious "nothing is real" refrain, and a kingdom within himself, while Paul strives to build a kingdom in the world. Definitely not preachy, the novel has an authentic sense of history and gives intriguing insights into life and character. Enjoy with a 4-star complex coffee for its somewhat complex themes. Then look for the first book, Yeshua, 'cause, yes, it's a sequel...

E. G. Lewis' At Table With the Lord also provides rich insight into life at the time of Christ, specifically into food and drink. What did gladiators eat? Did the Jews drink beer? What sort of pizza might Caesar have eaten? And what herbs were kept in the kitchen cabinet? Written as a series of essays, it's great fun for dipping into and a great book to enjoy with your lively 2-star coffee (and some ancient Roman snacks). Then look for more essays by E. G. Lewis because this is one of an ongoing series of standalone books from his research.

My review of Whispers at Willow Lake, by Mary Manners, should go live on Nights and Weekends next week. A short book, just the right length for lunch break or a long coffee break, this is an enjoyable tale of two young people meeting after separation and facing the mistakes that pulled them apart. There's a nice balance of romance, mystery, contemporary realities, family drama and a low-key but powerful faith in the tale, making it a thoroughly enjoyable read to go with that well-balanced 3-star coffee. Oh, and it's the start of a series, which takes me back to that issue of series, sagas and trilogies...


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