Mid June Reviews (2023)


Welcome to the Books That Burn Fortnightly Roundup! Releasing every two weeks (one week early for Patrons).

Recent Reviews

Reviews forthcoming for INTO THE RIVERLANDS by Nghi Vo and SPELLBOUND by Allie Therin.

FLIGHT & ANCHOR by Nicole Kornher-Stace, book 0.5 of FIREBREAK is Sci-Fi, with queer character(s), marketed as Adult. 06 and 22 run away from the Corporation in the middle of winter and try to survive by hiding out in an abandoned boxcar. Told in Third Person with an Omniscient Narrator.

THE MYSTERIES OF THORN MANOR by Margaret Rogerson, book 1.5 of Sorcery of Thorns is Fantasy/Romance, with queer character(s), marketed as Young Adult. Elisabeth and Nathaniel must figure out how to appease Thorn Manor when they get magically trapped. Told in Third Person with Dual POVs.

THE BONE SHARD EMPEROR by Andrea Stewart, book 2 of The Drowning Empire is Fantasy, with queer character(s), marketed as Adult. Lin is now the emperor, but her control over the islands is tenuous and it's hard to know who to trust. Told in Third Person with Ensemble POVs.

LOST IN THE MOMENT AND FOUND by Seanan McGuire, book 8 of Wayward Children is Fantasy marketed as Adult. Antsy runs away from abuse at home and finds herself in a shop for lost things which opens on many doors. Told in Third Person with an Omniscient Narrator.

LAST VIOLENT CALL by Chloe Gong, book 3.5 of Secret Shanghai Universe is Historical/Mystery, with queer character(s), marketed as Young Adult. A pair of stories, the first about Roma and Juliette, and the second about Benedikt and Marshall. Told in Third Person with Ensemble POVs.

THE BONE SHARD WAR by Andrea Stewart, book 3 of The Drowning Empire is Fantasy, with queer character(s), marketed as Adult. Lin has lost Jovis and is trying to keep the empire together as prejudice rises and witstone is in short supply. Told in First Person with Ensemble POVs.


Here are the books I tried and pretty quickly put down this fortnight:

  • MONGRELS by Stephen Graham Jones

  • REVELLE by Lyssa Mia Smith

  • CITY OF LIES by Sam Hawke

  • FRACTURED INFINITY by Nathan Tavares

  • THE MIRROR EMPIRE by Kameron Hurley

  • TO SHAPE A DRAGON'S BREATH by Moniquill Blackgoose

I wrote formal DNF reviews for A TOUCH OF DARKNESS by Scarlett St. Clair and THE SECOND REBEL by Linden A. Lewis.

No Review (Nonfiction, Graphic Novels, etc.)

I read several short stories available for free on Tor's website, they include SUPER BASS by Kai Ashante Wilson and ANGEL OF THE BLOCKADE by Alex Wells.

Rereads and Older Reviews

I re-read the entirety of the currently available books in the World of the White Rat by T. Kingfisher:







Current Reads

I'm still reading Dracula Daily, there was a comment on the most recent entry that we're entering a period of several weeks without any entries, so I won't have updates on this for a newsletter or two.

I'm reading SPELLBOUND by Allie Therin, the first book in Magic in Manhattan. I have a lot of complicated reactions to this book and am likely going to write a very long review when I get through it.

I'm dipped into my ARC of FORGED BY BLOOD by Ehigbor Okosun, it's going slowly.

THE BLACK COUNT by Tom Reiss (nonfiction) went back to the library so I'll finish it in a few weeks when I get it back.

In Case You Missed It

This time last year I read FULL FATHOM FIVE by Max Gladstone. This reminds me that I haven't read any more in the Craft Sequence since this book, I should probably change that.

Pluggables and Podcast News

If you're looking for a place to buy any of the books I've reviewed, please consider our Bookshop page (if you use our links to purchase any books we get a small commission). Let us know if there's a category you'd like to see curated and we'll see if we can get some titles together.

The 2023 prompts are now available from the annual reading challenge! It runs from January 1st to December 31st this year. Find info and links here.

As for the podcast, hopefully you're enjoying our most recent episode discussing A STRANGE AND STUBBORN ENDURANCE by Foz Meadows. If you'd like to receive episodes early, as well as bonus content, please consider supporting us on Patreon. Patrons receive this newsletter one week early, as well as a list of upcoming podcast episodes.

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Thanks for reading, the next roundup will be in two weeks!


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