Fall of a Kingdom

Fall of a Kingdom (Book 1) By Hilari Bell- Farsala is a mythological country long ago with a wise king; but the country has a caste system.  The King and his followers, the deghans are the upper caste; while the peasants make up the remainder.  Unfortunately, in part 1, the deghans and their honor almost destroy them as the enemy approaching the borders decimates the deghan cavalry thrown against them.  The enemy are the Hrum (think Romans) – who have conquered much of the world by superior battle strategy.  If they cannot conquer a country in one year; they will make the country an ally rather than spend their soldiers and resources uselessly.  All the peasants of Farsala have to do is hold out for one year.  Stories tell of a hero that the God Azura will provide when the country is in need, the reincarnation of a long ago hero, Sorahb. The enemies of the King require that the king’s beloved daughter Soraya be sacrificed.  She is hidden away in a farm way below her station; but escapes to the desert to live with the Suud who take her in and teach her a new way to live.  The king’s unacknowledged young son, Jiaan hides and gets a resistance together.  The peddler, Kavi, who was to keep the king apprised of his daughter’s well being turns traitor due to abuse of one of the deghan class.  The Hrum are now at a standstill at a city, Mazad, under siege and hoping to hold out for the required year with the aid of the resistance.

This trilogy has everything – loyalty, honor, betrayal, bad guys, good guys and redemption.  The adventure is never ending, keeping the interest going to the very end.  There is great diversity of the peoples involved.  The Hrum, except for their treacherous commander, are good rulers and fighting to a standstill to become an ally is a desired end due to the benefits involved, fair taxation and good roads being only a part of it.  Highly entertaining.

Thanks for your review Nancy!

Mid-June Bestsellers

Here are our bestsellers for the middle of June:

1  Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

2  Smokin’ Seventeen by Janet Evanovich

3  Heaven is For Real by Todd Burpo with Lynn Vincent

4  Seal Team Six by Howard E. Wasdin

5  A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin

6  The Help by Kathryn Stockett

7  10th Anniversary by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro

8  Dreams of Joy by Lisa See

9   Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson

10  Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz

Legend of the Jade Dragon

If you are looking for a nice cozy mystery, try Yasmine Galenorn’s Chintz’n China series.  The characters are warm and entertaining, and the mystery has enough suspense to keep you interested.  This series does have some paranormal aspects, but really just a touch here and there.  If I am craving a mystery, this is always the series I turn to first.  I love the homey feel that Galenorn creates in her stories as well as the mystery that takes me all around her small town, and at times Washington.

Legend of the Jade Dragon is the second book in the series.  It seems like Emerald has had nothing but bad luck after she witnesses a hit-and-run  that resulted in the death of a mysterious customer who gave her a jade dragon statue.  In order to keep her family safe, Emerald must get to the bottom of the mystery and find out how the dragon plays into her bad luck streak.

Trivia Question

Here is your end of the week trivia question:

“Renowned curator Jacques Sauniere staggered through the vaulted archway of the museum’s grand gallery.”

Identify the title an author from the passage above.  Leave your answer as a comment and check back on Sunday to see if you were correct.

New Releases

Here are a few of the new releases:

Smokin’ Seventeen by Janet Evanovich (This is the latest in the Stephanie Plum series)

The Devil Colony by James Rollins (This is the latest in the Sigma Force series)

The Witches of East End by Melissa de La Cruz

Carte Blanch:  The New James Bond Novel by Jeffery Deaver

One Summer by David Baldacci

Should I Share My Ice Cream?  (An Elephant and Piggie Book) by Mo Willems

Stop in the store to pick-up your copy or order online from mostlybooksaz.com.

The Fairy-Tale Detectives

The Fairy-Tale Detectives by Michael Buckley is the first book in the Sisters Grimm series, and it was terrific.  The story is about two sisters, Daphne and Sabrina, who learn that they are in-fact family members of the famous Grimm brothers.  To make things even more interesting, the girls discover that the brothers’ fairy tales are actually cases that they were working on.  It is now up to the sisters to take over monitoring the magical realm that is outside of town, which of course leads to all kinds of magical adventures.  This was a really cute story and is perfect for grades third through fifth.  The story has enough mystery to keep your young reader’s interest, but nothing too terrible scary.   The end is sure to leave you wanting more, so don’t be surprised if your reader wants book two right away.

Witches of East End

Witches of East End is Melissa de La Cruz’s first adult paranormal romance novel.  Previously, we have known and loved her young adult series such as Blue Bloods and Au Pairs, and now we can continue to love another series.  In this novel we meet Joanna and her two daughters Ingrid and Freya.  All three are immortal beings with magical gifts who, unfortunately, have been banned from using their talents in the human world.  Of course, things are starting to change and the women are growing restless after centuries without their magic.  Before long, all three are using their magic in the small town of North Hampton and hoping that the higher-ups don’t smite them.  Problems arise when a man is murdered and a young girl goes missing.  Soon, all of the townspeople  are looking at the three women who seem to be helping people but may in fact be witches practicing black magic.

Overall I enjoyed this book, especially the last 80 pages when all of the action and plot started to come together.    De La Cruz always does an amazing job of leading up to the next book; I always finish her books wanting to know more about the story.  Her mythology was a nice twist  and I am hoping the other books look at the women’s pasts a bit more.  Another stregngth of De La Cruz, is her talent to weave the characters’ past lives slowly into their current lives.  My one complaint is that I wanted more interaction in the beginning between the three characters.  Each one went about their own life completely separate from their family members.  At times, I felt like I was reading three different books.  Towards the end the three women started coming together and I am hopeful that the next book will have them solving problems together, or least have more daily interactions.  And needless to say, I do plan to read the next one as soon as she has finished writing it.

We were luck enough to get an advance copy of this book while we were at the book expo in May, but don’t worry it will be out June 21st-get your pre-order in now.

Trivia Answer

Answer:  Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.  This is the first line in one of her most famous works.  We have a wonderful  red leather bound collectors edition that contains four of Jane Austen’s novels for sale in the store for only $19.98 (plus tax).  The novels included are:  Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Emma, and Northanger Abbey.  Stop in the store or call for your copy.

The Devil Colony

The Devil Colony by James Rollins was great!  I have loved all of Rollins’s books, and this one was no exception.  This is the latest novel in the Sigma Six series (it helps to read them in order but isn’t necessary), and right from the first page, the action never stops.  Moving from Washington DC to Iceland to Tennessee, the characters are on the move and always in danger.  Rollins does a fabulous job of weaving the  history we all know with little known facts to create a nonstop thriller. We were lucky enough to get an advanced copy of this book to review, but don’t worry it is coming out June 21st.  Get your pre-order in now!