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Audiobook Review: Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – Black Spire By Delilah S. Dawson
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Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge - Black Spire by Delilah S. Dawson

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – Black Spire
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
Galaxy’s Edge – Book 2
Written by Delilah S. Dawson
Narrated by January LaVoy
Publisher: Del Rey | Random House Audio
Release date: August 27, 2019

In the second book of Disney’s new Star Wars series related to the Galaxy’s Edge theme park, Black Spire focuses on spy Vi Moradi’s attempts to resuscitate a flagging Resistance in the days immediately following the eighth film, The Last Jedi. With the New Republic’s central government destroyed by Starkiller Base and their forces all but defeated, Vi is sent by her mentor, General Leia Organa, to seek promising new worlds on which to re-kickstart the Resistance. To help her, Leia sends along Archex, a man with an intimate knowledge of the First Order. You see, he was not only a former Stormtrooper Captain known as Cardinal, but he and Moradi have a history all their own… Cardinal tortured Moradi after capturing her. During their torture sessions, though, Moradi discovered a weakness in Cardinal/Archex and exploited it. This allowed her to not only escape the clutches of the First Order, but also rescue a Stormtrooper was now able to see the error of his ways.

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Book Review: Stranger Things: Suspicious Minds By Gwenda Bond
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Stranger Things: Suspicious Minds by Gwenda Bond

Stranger Things: Suspicious Minds
Hardcover | Kindle | Paperback | Audiobook
Stranger Things, Book 1
Written by Gwenda Bond
Publisher: Del Rey
Release date: February 5, 2019

Stranger Things: Suspicious Minds is the first official book to be published that’s set in the fictional world of early 1980s Hawkins, Indiana, from Netflix’s Stranger Things and features some of the characters we have come to know and love from the three seasons of the hit streaming series.

But for this story, we travel a bit further back. To 1969, in fact. This is when Dr. Martin Brenner (Matthew Modine’s character) and his young ward, Kali (or “008” as we’ve come to know her), arrive at Hawkins National Laboratory to expand upon his experiments on the human mind. To aid in his tests, he recruits four college-aged kids chosen because of promising capabilities they’ve displayed.

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Audiobook Review: Star Wars: Thrawn: Treason By Timothy Zahn
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Thrawn: Treason by Timothy Zahn

Star Wars: Thrawn: Treason
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
Star Wars: Thrawn, Book 3
Written by Timothy Zahn
Narrated by Marc Thompson
Publisher: Del Rey Books | Random House Audio
Release date: July 23, 2019

Timothy Zahn returns with his denouement in his new canon trilogy of tales about Imperial Grand Admiral Thrawn titled Star Wars: Thrawn: Treason.

In it, Grand Admiral Thrawn butts heads with Director Orson Krennic over project funding. Thrawn believes the future of the Empire, at least in the years leading up to Episode IV: A New Hope, is his TIE Defender project. Krennic, on the other hand, is certain the Empire can only hope to survive if his Stardust* project even if it has been delayed and run a bit over budget.

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Audiobook Review: Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron by Alexander Freed
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Star Wars Alphabet Squadron by Alexander Freed

Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
Alphabet Squadron Trilogy, Book 1
Written by Alexander Freed
Narrated by Saskia Maarleveld
Publisher: Del Rey Books | Random House Audio
Release date: June 11, 2019

Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron is the first in a promised trilogy of books focusing on Navy pilots in the years following the Battle of Endor, after the Rebellion transitions into being the New Republic. The reason for the naming is because the squadron consists of pilots flying practically every letter-designated ship we’ve ever seen in the Star Wars saga — X-Wing, A-Wing, B-Wing, Y-Wing, and even Rogue One‘s U-Wing.

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Book Review: Alpha and Omega By Harry Turtledove
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Waerloga69   |  @   |  
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Alpha and Omega review

Alpha and Omega
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
By Harry Turtledove
Publisher: Del Rey, an imprint of Random House Books
Release Date: July 2, 2019

Harry Turtledove is renowned for his alternative historical tales. Oftentimes, one small change is all it takes to create an entirely different possible outcome. And, to be fair, I have enjoyed all of his prior stories that I have read. Therefore, I was slightly surprised to find that Alpha and Omega was less about a historical event and more about the present and, to some extent, the future. I was no less entranced, to be sure. In fact, it caused me some serious introspection when I put the book down. Curious? Then keep reading for more about this wonderful book.

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Book Review: The Women’s War
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The Women's War by Jenna Glass header

The Women’s War
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
By Jenna Glass
Publisher: Del Rey, an imprint of Random House Books
Release Date: March 6, 2019

To say that this book is a work of feminist fantasy is a lot like saying the ocean is wet. The Women’s War is a definitive work of raising women up in a patriarchal society, of that there can be no question. However, there is so much more to the story that it defies simplistic characterizations. This tale strives, and often succeeds, to ring the bell of resistance in an otherwise bleak world devoid of equality.

The best part of this novel is, hands down, the depth of character that author Jenna Glass brings to her work. So much time and paper is devoted to all of the characters that the setting seems to suffer quite often. As the reader connects quickly and strongly with the protagonist Alysoon, so do they empathetically bond with the women who are subjugated at every turn. This is a man’s world and not many are apt to forget it; even the magic of this world is divided. But it is through this division that something new has arisen. Something that will not just equalize but enable the women to turn the tables on any who would oppress them.

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Book Review: The Point By John Dixon
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The Point By John Dixon Cover

The Point
Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook
By John Dixon
Publisher: Del Rey
Release Date: August 7, 2018

Authors of superhero novels have a unique opportunity to showcase their characters in a way that many comic books and movies could never pull off. Due to the sheer length of prose fiction, authors are not only able to tell the story of a hero who “saves the day” from the next big threat, but they’re given the freedom to create and explore dynamic characters with layered emotions, whose lives are not simply defined by the costume they wear or the power they possess, but by how their actions – at all times – affect their dual existence. The Point by John Dixon is a story that, based on its premise, has so much potential; however, the length of time without a “real threat,” the general pacing of the novel, and low-stakes deaths all contribute to The Point truly missing “the point.”

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Countdown to Clone Wars: X-Wing – Wraith Squadron
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Clone Wars

Star Wars: X-Wing - Wraith SquadronStar Wars: X-Wing
Written by Aaron Allston
Book 5: Wraith Squadron
Book 6: Iron Fist
Book 7: Solo Command
Del Rey Books

The second part of the X-Wing series of Star Wars novels, and the second last set of books from which I’ll be reviewing, we are introduced to Wedge Antilles’ idea of a flying-commando group. While Rogue Squadron turned out to be fliers who might be able to do other things, Wedge wanted a group of specialist commando’s who, just probably, could fly.

And thus, Wraith Squadron was born, and with it some of the greatest characters you could ever hope for.

Only Wedge is brought over from the first four books for Wraith Squadron, and he is joined by Wes Janson, a character that appears very briefly in Empire Strikes Back. Together, they choose a bunch of misfits and outcasts, most on their last chance in the New Republic military, but that have specific skills, to join their new Wraith Squadron (Wes is Wedge’s number 2).

...continue reading »
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