Counterfeit Magic, by Kelley Armstrong


Once upon a time I went through all the Women of the Underworld books that Kelley Armstrong wrote. That was back when there were only eight plus a novella. Um. I think she’s up to eleven novels in that series, with a twelfth to be released later this year. There are also two short-story collections and four novellas, one of which is this one, published by Subterranean Press some time last year. Also another series, the first of which will be reviewed shortly. She’s still Canadian. I checked.

Anyway, Counterfeit Magic is narrated by Paige Winterbourne, the main character of Dime Store Magic and Industrial Magic. It features her and Savannah Levine, the daughter of Eve Levine, narrator and star of both Haunted and Angelic (the latter also a Sub Press book). Savannah is also the narrator of books 11-13 of the series, apparently. Paige and her husband run a private investigation business, and Savannah works for them as well. They receive an invitation to investigate a case that involves the existence of underground supernatural fight clubs, and Paige and Savannah have to infiltrate them. Continue reading Counterfeit Magic, by Kelley Armstrong

Fledgling, by Octavia Butler

Octavia Butler–described by Vibe as “do[ing] for people of color” what William Gibson did for “young, disaffected white” speculative fiction fans–unfortunately passed away in 2006. But before she did that, she wrote a dozen or so novels and a couple collections of short stories, primarily science fiction. She described herself as primarily a novelist at one point, although she started as so many authors do with a short story publication in the early 1970s. Over her career, she won a handful of major awards, including Hugos, Nebulas, and a MacArthur Genius Grant. She is primarily known for tackling social issues unflinchingly through her works, and Fledgling, a solo novel published about a year before her death, is no exception.

Fledgling is Ms. Butler’s foray into the vampire-novel genre. The main character–also the narrator–is Shori, a young vampire who survived a vicious attack on her family that left her very much injured and suffering from amnesia. The rest of the story details her fight to save her family, and her re-learning of what exactly she lost by not remembering the rest of her life. Continue reading Fledgling, by Octavia Butler