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Book Review: The Potter’s Boy By Tony Mitton
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The Potter's Boy by Tony Mitton

The Potter’s Boy
Hardcover | Kindle
By Tony Mitton
Publisher: David Fickling Books | Scholastic Press
Release date: February 26, 2019

Many years ago, 12-year-old Ryo played the role of dutiful son, learning to ply his future trade as a pottery maker like his father. However, when his small village is raided by brigands and a single stranger steps forward and ends the attack, Ryo changes his mind and wants to become a warrior like the stranger.

After obtaining his father’s blessing and waiting for his 13th birthday, Ryo heads out to find the stranger and train as he did so he can protect those who cannot protect themselves. What he encounters are challenges that he never expected, but is more than willing to face.

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Book Review: Apocalypse 5 By Stacey Rourke
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Apocalypse Five by Stacey Rourke

Apocalypse 5
Archive of the Fives, Book 1
Paperback | Kindle
By Stacey Rourke
Publisher: Black Spot Books
Release date: February 12, 2019

In Apocalypse 5, author Stacey Rourke introduces readers to a team of five early teenaged warriors who train mercilessly to protect the people of the starship AT-1-NS from any and all threats. They run virtual reality simulations nearly daily, but, despite being virtual, these trainings can result in death to the team members if they fail, at which time a new member will be promoted to the A5’s elite ranks.

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Audiobook Review: Star Wars: Pirate’s Price (Flight Of The Falcon)
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Star Wars: Pirate's Price Cover by Lou Anders

Star Wars: Pirate’s Price
“Flight of the Falcon” Series, Book 2
Audiobook | Hardcover | Kindle
Written by Lou Anders
Illustrated by Annie Wu
Audiobook narrated by Jim Cummings
Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Release date: January 8, 2019

Do you remember the pirate Hondo Ohnaka from either the Star Wars: Clone Wars or Star Wars: Rebels animated series? You don’t? That’s a little shocking. Sure, this Weequay was a background character, but he managed to insinuate himself into some pretty unforgettable sequences, both for better and for worse. I was never much of a fan myself. So imagine my dismay when I tuned into Star Wars: Pirate’s Price only to discover he was the front-and-center character driving the plot?

Yeah, I wasn’t happy. But then I started listening and, I’m going to be honest with you, hearing Jim Cummings bring Hondo to life through a mostly first-person accounting of his multiple times aboard the Millennium Falcon made me come around a bit. I actually kinda like the guy now.

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Audiobook Review: Star Wars: Lando’s Luck
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Star Wars: Lando's Luck by Justina Ireland

Star Wars: Lando’s Luck
Star Wars: Flight of the Falcon Series
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
Written by Justina Ireland
Illustrated by Annie Wu
Audiobook narrated by Soneela Nankani
Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Release date: October 2, 2018

Lando Calrissian has always been one of my favorite characters in the Star Wars universe. He’s a gambler, a swindler, a pilot, a warrior, a general, and he’s probably the only person that can make Han Solo blush. From that first moment on Bespin in The Empire Strikes Back when Billy Dee Williams faced off with Harrison Ford, that was it for me. And I have not been disappointed with his portrayals in any subsequent movie or book… and, yes, Donald Glover nailed it.

So, given the opportunity to review Star Wars: Lando’s Luck, a book dedicated to Lando, I jumped at the chance.

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Audiobook Review: Solo: A Star Wars Story (Expanded Edition)
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Solo: A Star Wars Story, Expanded Edition by Mur Lafferty

Solo: A Star Wars Story
Expanded Edition Novelization
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
Written by Mur Lafferty
Audiobook narrated by Marc Thompson
Publisher: Del Rey Books | Random House Audio
Release date: September 4, 2018

A few weeks ago, I reviewed the audiobook for the junior novel for Solo: A Star Wars Story, the first of two novelizations of the film released in conjunction with the Blu-ray Edition. I apologize that it took nearly three weeks to get around to this Expanded Edition, but, yanno, life and other Geeks of Doom reviews.

Much like I explained in the review of the Joe Schreiber junior novelization, Mur Lafferty‘s novelization is just that, a scene-by-scene retelling of the movie. The Junior Novel promised and delivered on a handful of deleted scenes that didn’t make the theatrical cut; the Expanded Edition promises and delivers on that and a whole ton more.

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Book Review: Resistant By Rachael Sparks
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Resistant book review

Resistant
Paperback | Kindle Edition
By Rachael Sparks
Publisher: SparkPress
Release date: October 16, 2018

Resistant is set in a not-so-distant future in which a large chunk of the world’s population has been decimated by disease, the spread of which was fueled by our long history of over-dependence on antibiotics, the dodgy business dealings of the pharmaceutical industry, and climate change. In the ensuing years, the remainder of the scientific community has been working on discovering a cure, to no avail. However, this effort is tainted. While a government-driven initiative, employing some of the world’s top scientists working against their will, will go to any length to find a cure so it can be privatized and sold to the highest bidder, a counteractive resistance is doing the same but with the aim of saving all of humanity.

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Book Review: Dracul By Dacre Stoker and J.D. Barker
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Dracul review

Dracul
Hardcover | Paperback | Kindle | Audiobook
By Dacre Stoker, J.D. Barker
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons | Penguin Books
Release date: October 2, 2018

It’s been about 125 years so I’m sincerely hoping that, by now, everyone is at least tangentially familiar with the legend of Count Dracula as published by Bram Stoker. Yes? Good. No? For shame!!

Now consider if you were told that the story of the world’s most infamous and influential vampire was based on true events in the life of its author.

Well, I’m not about to tell you that this is the case. However, Bram’s great-grand-nephew Dacre Stoker, along with co-author J.D. Barker, is here to do just that with Dracul, a prequel to the classic Dracula.

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Audiobook Review: Solo: A Star Wars Story Junior Novel By Joe Schreiber
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Solo: A Star Wars Story Junior Novel by Joe Schreiber

Solo: A Star Wars Story Junior Novel
Star Wars Junior Novelizations
Paperback | Kindle | Audiobook
Written Joe Schreiber
Audiobook narrated by Sean Henin Bradford Hastings
Publisher: Del Rey Books | Random House Audio
Audiobook Release date: September 4, 2018

I’d like to preface this by saying that the next week or so is going to be interesting. I just finished the audiobook of Solo: A Star Wars Story Junior Novel (which I will review here in short order) and then I’m embarking on Solo: A Star Wars Story Expanded Edition. Both are novelizations of the same movie, but with different authors and different voice talents on each. I want to liken it to watching the theatrical and director’s cuts of a film, but I don’t think it’s going to be like that at all, to be honest, because the interpretations by the authors should be slightly different and the lead voice will have a different sound entirely. Bear with me, okay?

I began with the Junior Novel audiobook because I knew I could tear through it pretty quickly and because I’m already familiar with author Joe Schreiber‘s work in the Star Wars Universe having read both Death Troopers and Maul: Lockdown. (I’m pretty sure Death Troopers is the final book I purchased before Borders Books & Music shuttered forever).

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Book Review: Not Even Bones By Rebecca Schaeffer
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Not Even Bones Book Cover

Not Even Bones
Hardcover | Kindle
By Rebecca Schaeffer
Publisher: HMH Books For Young Readers
Release date: September 4, 2018

There’s a risk inherent in reading the first published novel by an otherwise new author. There’s additional risk when that first published novel is announced as part of a planned trilogy before the author has even had the opportunity to toe the waters of publishing success. I admit I initially felt this way about reading Rebecca Schaeffer’s Not Even Bones. But the official synopsis won me over and made me overlook my trepidations and dive in.

I am so glad I did!

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Audiobook Review: Star Wars: Thrawn: Alliances By Timothy Zahn
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Star Wars: Thrawn: Alliances

Star Wars: Thrawn: Alliances
Hardcover | Kindle | Audible
Sequel to Star Wars: Thrawn Book 1
Written by Timothy Zahn
Audiobook narrated by Marc Thompson
Publisher: Del Rey Books | Random House Audio
Release Date: July 24, 2018

Ever since the 1991 release of Star Wars: Heir to the Empire, I have maintained that Grand Admiral Thrawn could be the best bad guy to ever grace the Star Wars universe. Even badder than Darth Vader. After author Timothy Zahn closed out the Thrawn trilogy of books – which also includes Dark Force Rising and The Last Command – I have been chomping on the bit for more Thrawn love.

Not only did I get no additional love, I had what I’d grown to love practically ripped out from under me as Thrawn and all the other characters introduced in the Expanded Universe of books and comics were declared non-canon by Lucasfilm. I was heartbroken.

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