It’s hard to believe summer is nearly over. It’s been a unique sort of summer here at Towne, the typical back to school season has also evolved as more schools resume with virtual learning. We’ve had a bit of a reading slump among us booksellers as well, so we just have a handful of new releases to share with you for this month.
Ink & Sigil by Kevin Hearne
What a fun book! I’m always looking for interesting books set in Scotland and I couldn’t have lucked out more with Ink & Sigil. I’m new to Kevin Hearne’s Iron Druid world, but I absolutely cannot wait to read more and explore the world and unique characters further!
New York Times bestselling author Kevin Hearne returns to the world of his beloved Iron Druid Chronicles in a spin-off series about an eccentric master of rare magic solving an uncanny mystery in Scotland.
Al MacBharrais is both blessed and cursed. He is blessed with an extraordinary white moustache, an appreciation for craft cocktails—and a most unique magical talent. He can cast spells with magically enchanted ink and he uses his gifts to protect our world from rogue minions of various pantheons, especially the Fae.
But he is also cursed. Anyone who hears his voice will begin to feel an inexplicable hatred for Al, so he can only communicate through the written word or speech apps. And his apprentices keep dying in peculiar freak accidents. As his personal life crumbles around him, he devotes his life to his work, all the while trying to crack the secret of his curse.
But when his latest apprentice, Gordie, turns up dead in his Glasgow flat, Al discovers evidence that Gordie was living a secret life of crime. Now Al is forced to play detective—while avoiding actual detectives who are wondering why death seems to always follow Al. Investigating his apprentice’s death will take him through Scotland’s magical underworld, and he’ll need the help of a mischievous hobgoblin if he’s to survive.
The Daughters of Ys by M. T. Anderson
This book is absolutely wonderful. Seriously, I couldn’t put it down! The beautiful artwork and vivid storytelling made the whole world of Ys come to life. I have always loved any type of folklore and fairy tale retelling, and now I want to know every Breton folktale out there. I completely love this book!
An Atlantis-like city from Celtic legend is the setting of The Daughters of Ys, a mythical graphic novel fantasy from National Book Award winner M. T. Anderson and artist Jo Rioux.
Ys, city of wealth and wonder, has a history of dark secrets. Queen Malgven used magic to raise the great walls that keep Ys safe from the tumultuous sea. But after the queen’s inexplicable death, her daughters drift apart. Rozenn, the heir to the throne, spends her time on the moors communing with wild animals, while Dahut, the youngest, enjoys the splendors of royal life and is eager to take part in palace intrigue.
When Rozenn and Dahut’s bond is irrevocably changed, the fate of Ys is sealed, exposing the monsters that lurk in plain view. M. T. Anderson and Jo Rioux reimagine this classic Breton folktale of love, loss, and rebirth, revealing the secrets that lie beneath the surface.
Where Dreams Descend by Janella Angeles
This book is truly magical in all of the senses. It follows a born magician named Kallia as she leaves all that she has known behind to travel to a formerly forbidden (to her) city. She auditions for a magic show as a chance for her to prove her worth. It won’t be easy for many reasons. One being that she is a woman in a male-dominated world, and magicians who are women are not seen as highly as men. Another reason being that she has spent her whole life with Jack, the master of Hellfire House, and another more powerful magician. Jack is hiding many secrets of his own and we learn them when Kallia does, and little by little through his own narrative. This book was gripping from the start, and really pulled me in immediately. The lush descriptions of everything really paints a unique world. Kallia is truly one of the strongest female characters I have ever read about, and I’m thoroughly excited to see where this series will go. It reminds me of all of the parts I liked about The Night Circus, but with a much more fast-paced plot.
This book is amazing and exquisitely written. With a writing style reminiscent of V.E. Schwab, lush and sensory details are layered throughout bringing each place, each person, each part of the story to vivid vibrant life. Beautifully worded sentences and cleverly constructed similes dot the pages, adding the flair of a live stage performance to every nook and cranny of the book. The story itself is a haunting tale full of magic, mystery, and suspense that keeps you guessing and will have you lusting after the next book in the series. With a full sensory experience, exciting magical moments, and a strange intricate love triangle I am still trying to piece together, Janella Angeles delivers a heart-pounding story that I absolutely need the sequel to.
Where Dreams Descend is the best sort of fantasy – one that immediately pulls you in and makes you want to inhabit the world right along with the characters. With the perfect balance of intrigue and fantastical world building, I wouldn’t hesitate to follow Kallia to the ends of the earth if it meant I could spend more time in the world of this wonderful book!
In a city covered in ice and ruin, a group of magicians face off in a daring game of magical feats to find the next headliner of the Conquering Circus, only to find themselves under the threat of an unseen danger striking behind the scenes.
As each act becomes more and more risky and the number of missing magicians piles up, three are forced to reckon with their secrets before the darkness comes for them next.
The Star: Kallia, a powerful showgirl out to prove she’s the best no matter the cost
The Master: Jack, the enigmatic keeper of the club, and more than one lie told
The Magician: Demarco, the brooding judge with a dark past he can no longer hide
Where Dreams Descend is the startling and romantic first book in Janella Angeles’ debut Kingdom of Cards fantasy duology where magic is both celebrated and feared, and no heart is left unscathed.
Tomorrow we’ll be featuring the Indie Next titles that are new in paperback this month!