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Book Recommendations September 2023

fantasy science fiction mystery Book Recommendations September 2023

As I start to share all these science fiction, fantasy, mystery and romance book recommendations in blog post form, I have to admit it’s great to revisit some old book recommendations about some of my favourite books. These book recommendations are important to read because before writers become writers, they are readers. Therefore, please enjoy these fantasy and science fiction book recommendations from September 2023.

Heads Up By Dean Wesley Smith

After over 18,000 steps and spending 4 hours today on the train as I travelled from Newcastle to Kent after a little trip, I am really looking forward to recommending a mystery book I've been reading this past week. Therefore, this week I am very happy to recommend "Heads Up" by Dean Wesley Smith. This book follows the story of retired detectives Cavanaugh and Bonnie on their first case together as they try to solve the disappearance of a woman from over a decade ago. I really liked this mystery book for a number of reasons. Firstly, I liked it because it features my two favourite retired detectives as "Ring Game" was the first Cold Poker Gang novel I ever read and it features them. In fact it is the next book. So it was great to see how these two characters met, fell in love and solved their first case together. It's been a lot of fun from that perspective. Also, the plot is brilliant and twisted like all Cold Poker Gang novels are. The mystery plot is gripping, unexpected and it is a hell of a ride all the way to the end. That is what makes this book so much fun to read and this is why I like the series so much. Despite from the fact you'll pick up a fun, gripping puzzle mystery book, you never know what you'll get in these books. Finally, I really like this mystery book because it's an unputdownable. From the book's characters that you just want to follow along to the end, to the twisted plot, to the way the characters form a great team around them. There is just no way to escape this great story and that is why I am happily recommending this book this week. Overall, if you want a fun, gripping mystery book then definitely check out "Heads Up" by Dean Wesley Smith.

Cold Blue Eternity By R. W. Wallace

Whilst my reading was relatively shot to pieces last week for various reasons, there's one short story I certainly want to recommend this week and that is the brilliant mystery/ fantasy short story "Cold Blue Eternity" by a personal favourite R.W. Wallace. Now this mystery story follows the journey of Emma as she sets out to investigate a series of accidents being done by suddenly "crazy" people. This story I really liked reading this for a few reasons. Mainly because the plot was great, clever and it was fascinating to see how Emma goes about solving the mystery. From climbing up glaciers, to uncovering family secrets, to its tense near-death experiences in-between. This story has everything you could ever hope for in a short story so the plot certainly makes it fun. Also, considering how much US-centric fiction I read, I seriously love well-written European stories. This mystery is set in wonderful France and the coldness of the mountains, the sense of community and even the generation divide about tourism comes through in the story. It really makes you feel like you're in the Alps for a brief moment and that is a really nice change of setting for me. I would love to go back to Paris and explore the rest of France at some point. Finally, something I won't go into too much depth about because I risk ruining the story for you. Yet the reason why I keep coming back to Wallace's short stories (and her novels when I get round to them) is because she flat out doesn't care about genre. She writes the brilliant story she wants to write and whether it ends up being a mystery, fantasy, a mixture of the two or not. She always delivers a strong, enjoyable short story that I can devour. That is how you know you have a good writer to follow. So if you want a fun mystery short story to enjoy this week, certainly check out "Cold Blue Eternity" by R. W. Wallace. Available at all major booksellers.

Card Sharp Silver By Dean Wesley Smith

Whilst I was struggling to find a book to recommend this week, I was flat out amazed when I searched my history to find that I had never ever recommended this great book before. Therefore, this week I am very happy to recommend this science fiction fantasy mystery book called "Card Sharp Silver" by Dean Wesley Smith. The mystery book follows the story of Annie who falls through a portal in the early 1900s to the present day and the Sheriff she falls in love with as he tries to help her. I read this mystery quite a while back but I still remember this great story. I like it because it is a classic twisted, weird Dean Wesley Smith type of story where it is basically original and you would never have anything like it before. Dean's stories are always worth a read for that reason alone. Also, I really like it because the characters are refreshing, likeable and you love seeing them fall in love along the way. They're really fun to be around and you really don't want the book to end because the characters are so much fun to read about. As well as I have to admit I was really impressed with how Annie's character was done because she's from the 1900s and Dean manages to perfectly make her seem comfortable enough to make you keep reading but he still acknowledges the weirdness of the new world to her. That was a great learning experience as a writer. Finally, the plot is just a lot of fun. It is certainly the characters I remember more than the plot but that really doesn't make the book any less worth a read. It is just pure escapism and I loved this mystery book. So if you want to enjoy a great, enthralling mystery book this week, then look no further than Card Sharp Silver. You won't regret it.

A Sentient Surprise by Kari Kilgore

As I just finished spending a session finishing on my new Kickstarter that I am ambitiously hoping to launch next Tuesday, I remembered that I haven't done this week's book recommendation. Truth be told, I did actually have to panic at the weekend and find something to recommend so I went on Kobo, raided my Wishlist and came across this beautiful little short story called "A Sentient Surprise" by one of my favourite authors Kari Kilgore. The story follows a woman who is still adjusting to waking up after a long sleep on a colony ship in deep space, but she quickly realises something is very, very wrong with the ship. Personally, I have to call this a beautiful short story because I don't think you can get anything more up my street. Combining science fiction and fantasy elements is very hard and I love this sort of stuff, it is a massive shame that I can't always find it. So when I learnt one of my favourite writers was combining science fiction and fairies, I knew I wasn't going to be able to resist for long. Also, it is actually just a really nice story about the goodness of humanity and how humans meaning other creatures doesn't always have to end in bloodshed. This isn't a first contact story but... just read the story and find out. And the setting is rich, thick and you do feel like you're living and breathing in a space ship. The setting is that good and it is the setting and the character that brings the story alive. So if you want a great science fiction and fantasy short story to enjoy this week that is pure escapism, look no further than "A Sentient Surprise" by Kari Kilgore. You won't be sorry you read it. I know I certainly wasn't.

I hope you enjoyed these book recommendations and if you want to see some of my own fantasy, science fiction, mystery and romance books. Then please click the hyperlink on the genre you want to explore. You won’t regret exploring these great books.

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