Tag: Bloodlines

By Blood We Live by Glen Duncan

Posted March 26, 2014 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Horror, Literary Fiction / 4 Comments

By Blood We Live by Glen DuncanTitle: By Blood We Live (Goodreads)
Author: Glen Duncan
Series: Bloodlines #3
Published: Knopf Doubleday, 2014
Pages: 368
Genres: Horror, Literary Fiction
My Copy: Hardcover

Buy: AmazonBook Depository (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

It’s a sad day for me; Glen Duncan’s Bloodlines trilogy has finally come to an end. This series has been a favourite of mine and I have been desperate to get my hands on By Blood We Live. If you don’t know, this trilogy started off as a bit of a joke for Glen Duncan. One New Year’s Eve party he jokingly claimed that he would write a page-turner with werewolves, and “none of my usual philosophical angst or moral inquiry.” Having recently been dumped from a publisher (he had no best sellers and had won no awards) the move towards literary genre fiction was a recipe for success for Duncan.

In the early planning stages, Glen Duncan had planned to write a “clever narrative with a memorable antihero at its feral, furry heart”. Being disappointed by the recent wave of popular paranormal novels (Twilight, etc) Duncan drew from the horror novels he loved (Frankenstein and Dracula) as well as his favourite werewolf movie (An American Werewolf in London); the end result was The Last Werewolf. It was Duncan’s take on the werewolf novel; remaining true to the mythology, unlike other paranormal novel The Last Werewolf was gritty, violent and over sexed. Jake Marlowe is the last werewolf alive, with the pending extinction of his new race, will he give up? The novel was nothing like other horror novels I read, this was dark and literary.

Then came Talulla Rising, which continued the story, this time from the point of view of Talulla Demetriou; a strong female protagonist that both kick-assed and was full of inner torment (my catnip). Where The Last Werewolf looked at life and loneliness, Talulla Rising forced more on love and family. It has been a two year wait but finally By Blood We Live was finally released to conclude this fantastic trilogy.

In By Blood We Live we follow both Remshi, 20,000-year-old vampire that has been haunted by Talulla in his dreams. Having half the novel from a vampires perspective is an interesting change for fans of the series. This novel focuses on survival and humanity, which are both common elements in a paranormal novel but a nice way to tie this trilogy together. Talulla is been pursued by a Vatican-based Militi Christian group of monster hunters who have taking the place of the now defunct WOCOP (World Organisation for the Control of Occult Phenomena).  Remshi tries to uncover why Talulla haunts him as well as trying to stop the recklessness of a newly turned vampire.

While I wasn’t disappointed by By Blood We Live, I felt like this book wasn’t as great as its predecessors. It did conclude the trilogy and there were some great moments within the novel, I just felt like it had less to say than the first two. The literary wasn’t as prominent, almost like Glen Duncan is moving into the realm of best-selling author. While he does deserve the success, I would hate to see Duncan throw away any sign of the literary in his future novels. Rest assured that the dark and gritty feel to this series is still there. Something I must have looked in the first two novels was the amount of literary and pop culture references have been made; I know they were always in this series but I noticed them so much more in this novel.

I loved this series and I plan to reread them sometime in the near future; I know I’ll need to return to these witty and dark novels. I also have to try some of his other books, I know he said he wasn’t going to add his “usual philosophical angst or moral inquiry”, but I’m so glad he did, it really works for him. I hope Glen Duncan continues on his literary genre fiction journey and I’m eagerly awaiting what he does next. Has anyone else read this series? Or does anyone want to try to predict what genres his next book will cover?


What Books Have Been Trending – April-June 2013

Posted June 28, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Book Trends / 0 Comments

As we head into the middle of the year we are now going to start seeing all the summer (winter here) blockbusters being released. It feels like there is a new book being talked about every week nowadays but once again I thought I would have my fun and look at some of the books I’ve noticed trending for the past three months. Like always this is not accurate, this is judgement plus culling most books so we can cover more genres.

April

Why is crunchy food so appealing? Why is it so hard to find words for flavours and smells? Why doesn’t the stomach digest itself? How much can you eat before your stomach bursts? Can constipation kill you? Did it kill Elvis? In Gulp we meet scientists who tackle the questions no one else thinks of–or has the courage to ask.

 

A guy walks into a bar car and…From here the story could take many turns. When this guy is David Sedaris, the possibilities are endless, but the result is always the same: he will both delight you with twists of humour and intelligence and leave you deeply moved. Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls is David Sedaris humourous collection of essays that cover a range of topics.

Ursula Todd is born in a snowstorm in England in 1910 but dies before she can take her first breath. During that same snowstorm she was born again and lives to tell the tale; again and again. Life after Life tells the story of Ursula’s lives, as with each new life she makes small changes that send her on a completely different path.

 

Summer, Massachusetts. An old Silver Wraith with a frightening history. A story about one serial killer and his lingering, unfinished business. Anyone could be next. NOS4R2 is an old-fashioned horror novel in the best sense. Claustrophobic, gripping and terrifying, this is a story that will have you on the edge of the seat while you read, and leaving the lights on while you sleep.

Nora Eldridge, a 37-year-old elementary school teacher in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is on the verge of disappearing. Having abandoned her desire to be an artist, she has become the “woman upstairs,” a reliable friend and tidy neighbour always on the fringe of others’ achievements. The Woman Upstairs is a masterly told story of America today, of being a woman and of the exhilarations of love.

May

A new novel about how we love, how we take care of one another, and how the choices we make resonate through generations. In And the Mountains Echoed, we follow its characters and the ramifications of their lives and choices and loves around the globe—from Kabul to Paris to San Francisco to the Greek island of Tinos—the story expands gradually outward, becoming more emotionally complex and powerful with each turning page.

One last Sookie Stackhouse adventure; Life has taken her from a waitress in Merlotte’s Bar, Bon Temps, to part owner; from social outcast to the heart of her community; from a vampire’s girlfriend to the wife of one of the most powerful vampires in the state. She has survived earthquakes, revolutions and attempts on her life. Dead Ever After is the final chapter in this much loved series.

In the heart of Italy, Harvard professor of symbology Robert Langdon is drawn into a harrowing world centred on one of history’s most enduring and mysterious literary masterpieces . . . Dante’s Inferno. From the bestselling thriller author that brought us The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demon’s comes the forth book in the Robert Langdon series, Inferno.

The 1st Wave took out half a million people.
The 2nd Wave put that number to shame.
The 3rd Wave lasted a little longer, twelve weeks… four billion dead.
In the 4th Wave, you can’t trust that people are still people.
And The 5th Wave? No one knows. But it’s coming.

Rose Baker seals men’s fates. With a few strokes of the keys that sit before her, she can send a person away for life in prison. She is The Other Typist, an office girl in a New York City Police Department precinct. Confessions are her job. It is 1923, and while she may hear every detail about shootings, knifings, and murders, as soon as she leaves the interrogation room she is once again the weaker sex, best suited for filing and making coffee.

June

From the moment I first met Gideon Cross, I recognized something in him that I needed. Something I couldn’t resist. I saw the dangerous and damaged soul inside–so much like my own. I was drawn to it. I needed him as surely as I needed my heart to beat. Entwined with You is the third book in Sylvia Day’s Crossfire series; Entwined by our secrets, we tried to defy the odds.

College student Devin Jones took the summer job at Joyland hoping to forget the girl who broke his heart. But he wound up facing something far more terrible: the legacy of a vicious murder, the fate of a dying child, and dark truths about life—and what comes after—that would change his world forever.

 

In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims. Gameboard of the Gods, the first installment of Richelle Mead’s Age of X series, will have all the elements that have made her YA Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series such mega successes: sexy, irresistible characters. romantic and mythological intrigue, and relentless action and suspense.

A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. It is a stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly’s wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.

 

The National Book Award-winning author of Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann comes an astonishing new novel, TransAtlantic. Through a series of narratives that span 150 years and two continents comes this magnificent and somewhat ambitious novel. From the first TransAtlantic flight from Newfoundland to the west of Ireland to the American senator crossing the ocean in search for lasting peace in Ireland, this is part fiction part historical literary achievement.

There are some very obvious choices here but that seems to be the books that I have seen being talked about the most. I do cut out a lot of books if I feel like there are too many in the same genre, I want to leave room for books in other genres that people might be interested in. I’ve read a few of these books and have a lot on my TBR already. I would love to hear what you think I’ve missed and what you expect to trend in the next three months.


What Books Have Been Trending – April-June 2012

Posted June 25, 2012 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Book Trends / 0 Comments

Back in March I did a post where I talked about what books I’ve noticed were trending for the first three months of 2012. I loved doing this post and thought it was really interesting looking at what was popular and what was been talked about. There is no real science to the books I’ve picked for this post, I looked at Goodreads and Twitter and book blogs and just picked the books that seemed to be mentioned. Sure there are probably other books that were trending but the post was just an interesting way to reflect on what was popular. Since this post I’ve had been thinking about trending books more and more and have been keeping an eye on what seems popular so I thought maybe I could do something similar again. In fact maybe I can do this every quarter as a way to look at what’s been happening in book trends. I’d like to have a better system and I hope with practice and help maybe these trending posts will become more accurate and maybe more frequent.

In the last post I tried to predict a book that would be trend in the next few months; my pick was Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway.   While it seemed to do really well, unfortunately the book was outshined by the ever annoying popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey. So let’s look at what I’ve noticed trending for the past three months (minus Fifty Shades) and for the sake of not flooding the post with YA novels I will only pick one or two of the most popular Young Adult book for each month (YA book bloggers might want to focus on these books, I would rather have more of an overview from all genres).

April

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened is a mostly true memoir of one of the most known bloggers of our time; Jenny Lawson, also known as The Bloggess. Her blog averages close to half a million page views a month; now that is the kind of readership I can only dream of.

 

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa looks like it has every key ingredients to make this book a popular YA novel; Vampires, Paranormal Romance and a dystopian world, so it was no surprise this book trended from the very start of publication. The Immortal Rules is a fantastical is the story of Allison who has to face the difficult choice; to die or become one of the monsters (vampire).

The Selection by Kiera Cass is another dystopian young adult romance, but this one seems to be written to be more like a fairy tale. Maybe this book would be more suited as a gateway between YA romance and chick lit, but I’ve not read it so couldn’t tell you. The Selection is about a woman named American hoping to win the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.

May

Book twelve of the ever popular Southern Vampire Mysteries (or should I call it the Sookie Stackhouse series or maybe True Blood), Deadlocked was always going to trend. This time there is trouble and bad timing for a body to show up in Eric Northman’s front yard—especially when the body is of a woman whose blood he just drank.

 

Insurgent by Veronica Roth is book two in the popular dystopian YA; Divergant series. Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

 

Book five in The Mortal Instruments series, City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clair is another paranormal romance YA novel, this one features vampires, angels and demons. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing–but so is the boy she hates, Sebastian, the son of her father Valentine: a son determined to succeed where their father failed, and bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg was released back in February but it wasn’t till May that I seemed to see this Non-Fiction novel being mentioned. This might have something to do with the #fridayreads giveaway of this book. In this book, Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed.

June

Man Booker Prize winner Hilary Mantel is back with the next book in the Wolf Hall series; Bring Up the Bodies. This book continues the Tudor history, but this time focusing mainly on the rise and fall of Anne Boleyn. Read my reveiw of Wolf Hall here.

 

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn seems to be the first mystery/thriller to trend since last year’s Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson. Amy’s disappearance leads to a gripping and chilling book of love, hate and revenge. I’m currently enjoying this book at the moment.

 

The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead is the second book in the Bloodlines series; which is a spinoff of her popular Vampire Academy series. This is another vampire, paranormal YA novel that always seems to be popular and dominate the book trends.

 

Nick Harkaway does make it into the book trends but not with the expected Angelmaker but with is non-fiction book The Blind Giant. The digital age;an age of isolation, warped communication, disintegrating community. Where unfiltered and unregulated information pours relentlessly into our lives, destroying what it means to be human; or an age of marvels.

I did try to cover both fiction and non-fiction book as well as adult and young adult books. I hope I didn’t flood this post with too many YA novels. While I’ve not read any of these books there is a few that look interesting and I’m looking forward to checking out. Like the last post, I feel I should try and predict a book that will trend next quarter (not a YA novel, as they are a little easier to predict. So my pick for next quarter is The Dog Stars by Peter Heller. This Post-Apocalyptic novel follows the story of Hig a pilot that has survived the flu that killed everyone he knows and loves. I’m expecting it to be a book of love, loss, risk, rediscovery and battling against the odds. I would love to know what other thing of the books that have trended, which books did I miss and what should we keep an eye out in the next three months.