This is part two of the post from Sunday. These are the books that I decided wanted to come home with me when I went to pick up the box of books I couldn’t carry on Saturday. This is going to be another long one, so hydrate and fetch your snacks.
First up is The Allegiance of Man by Jane Welch. I figured I had probably just missed that they had book 3 of The Book of Man since these were part of a new shipment that I had been lucky enough to get first dibs at. I had, so I picked it up. Since I’d also discovered that there was a series in between the two I had purchased, I went looking for those. While that shipment didn’t have the series, the bookshop did have book 1, The Lament of Abalone, on the shelf. So I’ll be looking for the other two books at Arty Bees this week.
Chris Bunch is another new-to-me author from the three big boxes of treasure I was sorting through at Atlantis (the booksellers got much amusement out of my enjoyment and exclamations), but I was all for finding new-to-me treasure as well as what I had gone seeking and this one sounded interesting. I don’t pay attention to quotes from other authors on books (and sometimes it can make me less inclined to pick one up), but I rarely see Julian May quoted and seeing that here definitely didn’t hurt.
I managed to get the first two books in The Seer King trilogy.
Numantia is a dying empire, the frontier ruled by outlaws, the provinces by rebels, the citizens by discontent. Ancient forces of dark magic grow everywhere, ignored by the Empire’s rulers. For two people it is a time of immense possibility and infinite danger.
Hotheaded young cavalry officer Damastes and the wizard Tenedos were supposed to die in a mountain ambush. But their enemies underestimated the amazing powers of the seer and the bravery of the soldier. And the friendship that forms between them will change history itself.
As Tenedos and Damastes begin to outwit usurpers and necromancers, word spreads that theirs is a path of destiny. For Damastes, it will lead to glory, and the love of a beautiful, troubled countess. For Tenedos, it points to unimaginable heights of ambition. And for Numantia, it shows the way to a renaissance… in service to the Goddess of Death.
And since The Seer King trilogy sounded good, I thought I’d pick up the omnibus of his Dragon Master trilogy too. This one I know a lot less about, as modern omnibus printings are often pretty sub-par with blurbing the back of the book, and this is no exception.
When the uneasy peace of the three kingdoms is threatened by war, Hal’s dream of riding dragons becomes reality. For this is a conflict like no other. For the first time, wild dragons have become living weapons, ridden by men of cold daring and ruthless ambition. And the greatest of them is Hal Kailas. Dragonmaster.
Joanne Bertin’s The Last Dragonlord has been mentioned as one that people who like Dragonriders of Pern also like, so I thought it worth trying. Together with its sequel Dragon & Phoenix. Plus, who wouldn’t be interested in the idea of people who can shapeshift into dragons.
For centuries the Dragonlords – humans who can become dragons at will through ancient magic – have aided true humans, and sat in judgement on their wars and political wranglings. Now Linden Rathan, youngest of the weredragons and still awaiting his soultwin after six hundred years, is sent to Casna in the land of Cassori. There he must judge a regency dispute, together with two other Dragonlords.
But behind the dispute is a dark magic set to destroy Linden and all the Dragonlords. Just as he believes he has found his true love, Linden must undertake the protection of both himself and his entire race.
Continuing the trend of interesting sounding nineties Fantasy containing dragons, I picked up Ice Mage and Fire Music by Julia Gray.
The remote and wild land of Tiguafaya is on the edge of chaos. The menacing volcanoes that dominate the landscape threaten destruction. Repulsive fireworms, marauding pirates and ancient dragons grow bolder every day. And the corrupt and ineffectual government can do nothing.
The only hope for survival lies with a group of young rebels known as the Firebrands. Led by the lovers Andrin and Ico, and the half-mad musician Vargo, the Firebrands are desperately fighting back. Using the once-revered but now lost arts of magic against overwhelming odds, they are all that stand between Tiguafaya and devastation.
This next series, The Banned and the Banished by James Clemens, is one that could go either way on the very good vs very bad scale. I think I picked up Wit’ch Gate or Wit’ch Star first and read the back and was intrigued. Then realised it was later in a series. When the bookshop has the complete series, what is a girl to do but of course bring them all home. Worst case, I don’t like the first book and I take them all back again.
On a fateful night five centuries ago, three mages made a desperate last stand, sacrificing everything to preserve the only hope of goodness in the beautiful, doomed land of Alasea. Now, on the anniversary of that ominous night, a girl-child ripens into the heritage of lost power. But before she can even comprehend her terrible new gift, the Dark Lord dispatches his winged monsters to capture her and bring him the embryonic magic she embodies.
Fleeing the minions of darkness, Elena is swept toward certain doom – and into the company of unexpected allies. There she forms a band of the hunted and the cursed, the outcasts and the outlaws, to battle the unstoppable forces of evil and rescue a once-glorious empire.
This next series is one I haven’t heard about, but I have heard good things about the author, so I thought it worth the risk to buy books three and four of this series (of unknown name, but I’m guessing it has Neverÿon in it) and hope I can find the first two.
I’ve collected most of the Chanur books by CJ Cherryh and have just the first and last left I think. I decided to pick up this omnibus edition of books 1-3 (even though book 1 is a standalone and books 2-4 are a trilogy) in case I don’t manage to get The Pride of Chanur as a single book. Since I had also collected one of her series, I thought I’d pick up the standalone Wings of Flame by Nancy Springer. And Andre Norton is a good bet, so I picked up Catseye.
The Chanur Saga
No one at Meetpoint Station had ever seen a creature like the Outsider. Naked-hided, blunt-toothed and blunt-fingered, Tully was the sole surviving member of his company – a communicative, spacefaring species hitherto unkown. He had been a prisoner of his discoverers/captors, the sadistic, treacherous kif, until he escaped to the hani ship, The Pride of Chanur.
Little did Tully know when he threw himself on the mercy of the crew of The Pride that he put the entire hani species in jeopardy and imperilled the peace of the Compact itself. This seemingly defenceless fugitive held information which could prove the ruin or glory of any species at Meetpoint Station, and whomever Tully allied with would stand to gain power and riches beyond imagining. For with Tully came the key to opening trade with a previously unknown sector of space – a sector of space controlled by a race called “humans”. And what began as a simple rescue attempt would soon blossom into a dangerous game of interstellar politics where today’s ally could become tomorrow’s executioner, and where methane breathers become volatile wild cards playing for stakes no oxy breather could even begin to understand.
Wings of Flame
Bitter enemies, the nations of Deva and Vashti shared no history, no customs, no laws. They all worshipped the horse-god Suth, but the rituals and magics of one people were the heresies of the other.
Two nations that shared only one thing – the curse of the Nameless One A demonic hatred that could destroy the lands of Suth.
Now three people must confront the Nameless One. Prince Kyrem of Deva: a young warrior, master of the great stallion Omber, and a hostage to peace. King Auron of Vashti: last of his line, a pacifist magician and healer bound by his land, trapped by his priesthood. And Seda: an orphan born lower than a slave, with no past, no future, no true name, no hope – but bearer of an unknown legacy, and an unknowable destiny.
To survive, they would have to find the love and magic to challenge the hatred of generations. And to save their world, they would have to find the strength to battle history, heaven, and hell.
Deported to the planet Korwar during a galactic war, Trot Horan is lucky to find work in an exclusive pet shop which imports unusual animals from other planets. To his surprise, he soon discovers that he can understand some of the animals’ thoughts.
But there is something sinister about the pet shop. What is the purpose of these special animals, and who is the unknown agent who dominates their strange powers and terrifies them? And who plotted the murder of Kyger, the owner of the pet shop?
Since I had decided to start collecting Darkover by Marion Zimmer Bradley, I picked up a couple more of these as they were in the $2-3 book section.
And also The Brass Dragon by her as it sounded just strange enough to probably be enjoyable.
Barry Cowan woke up screaming in a hospital room with a nightmare where his memory should have been, and a curious brass figurine in his pocket that made the nightmare seem all too likely to be true. Yet for all the emptiness there was a familiarity about the stranger who appeared, claiming to be his father – a HORRIFYING familiarity, tied somehow to the dreams of another world that invaded his sleep. Where had he been? What had happened to shock his mind so deeply that it refused to remember? Unknown to Barry, his deeper self had been wise in forgetting; if his efforts to call back the lost year of his life should succeed, would he survive?
I’ve been trying to collect the Talents series by Anne McCaffrey ever since I heard they were basically a prequel to The Rowan, so picked up Pegasus in Space when I saw it.
And I have been hearing good things about her The Ship Who Sang series, so picked up the first book of the same name.
The brain was perfect, the tiny, crippled body useless. So technology rescued the brain and put it in an environment that conditioned it to live in a different kind of body – a spaceship. Here the human mind, more subtle, infinitely more complex than any computer ever devised, could be linked to the massive and delicate strengths, the total recall, and the incredible speeds of space. But the brain behind the ship was entirely feminine – a complex, loving, strong, weak, gentle savage – a personality, all-woman, called Helva.
Deathworld 2 by Harry Harrison sounded interesting, so I also picked up Deathworld 3. It was after I saw the latter that I realised this was a series, so I guess I’ll be looking for Deathworld now.
I think I have read 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea many, many years ago, back in my childhood. But I have no recollection, so decided I should get this well-loved copy. Even if it is the abridged version.
And I still haven’t found the L. Sprague de Camp book I’m looking for, but in the meantime, I’m happy to pick up others I find, like The Venom Trees of Songa.
Kirk Salazar, devout intellectual, had quite been looking forward to his field research on Sunga. He aimed to discover how the stump-tailed, semi-arboreal kusis lived without being injured within the venom tree forest. A fascinating topic!
His thesis would have progressed splendidly, save for one thing. A certain lack of financing necessitated that he travel through Sunga with a tour group. Much against his will, he soon became embroiled with a conglomeration of characters even more peculiar than Sunga’s natural wonders.
First there were the hard-core tourists, always pushing and complaining, desperate to glimpse the rare, birdlike zutas. Worse was Cantemir – a man lewd, rude, and dangerous – who had struck a deal with the native Chief to destroy the whole Sunga forest for lumber! But most formidable was Alexis Ritter. She was the high priestess of a Sunga cult dedicated to chastity. But she sure seemed to have a use in mind for Salazar’s body!
Doggedly Salazar pursued his research through ambushes, sex, and even attempted murder. A determined intellectual does not give up easily – even if he has to go to extremes to defend his thesis.
And finally, because when you’re buying this many books, why not throw in a random one at the end, there is The Misbegotten King, which sounded interesting. But now that I am looking at the back, it appears it is book 3 to a trilogy 🤦♀️.
So that’s 29 books purchased in this batch, 31 if you could the Dragonmaster omnibus as three separate books. Added to 46 from Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday (breaking down the MZB omnibus to the three books it contains), that totals 57 books this week from my treasure hunts! No more book buying for me. For a couple of months at least. Except for the book club books I still need to get. And that other book I requested from my local bookshop. And if I find any of the gaps I need to fill in the series I’m trying to collect…
wow fantastic finds!!! you will have to tell me if the The Last Dragonlord and Dragon Master series are any good. saw those on trademe a few times and i was tempted but didn’t commit to buying. And the Chanur series!! i saw a booktuber talking about it awhile back and got me interested, thinking that will probably be hard to find the whole series so i looked for the ebooks instead. thinking about starting book one this week or next week.
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