I'm Audra, a 30-something married lesbian with a thing for literary fiction and historical novels. But I'm also having a pretty torrid affair with gritty noir and some paranormal /supernatural fiction. I love interesting heroines, gorgeous prose, place as character, and the occasional werewolf.
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Smashwords book reviews by Audra
- Apex Magazine - Issue 10
on July 16, 2010
This was my first time ever reading Apex Magazine and I wasn't sure what to expect. This issue was almost solely dedicated to Mary Robinette Kowal's work, an author I was unfamiliar with -- but I can now say I'm a fan. The three stories are wildly different from each other but each is so well-written was I immediately sucked in.
My favorite has to be "The Bride Replete" which blew me away -- Kowal's world-building is marvelous, and she does it in a way that is effortless, easy, and ... sneaky. I say sneaky because even though the story is set on an alien world with an alien race, I was able to get into the story without feeling lost or confused.
My second favorite story was "Scenting the Dark" -- it had a kind of 'Pitch Black' feel to it, in a fabulous way.
Kowal's other two stories were wonderful, but these were the standouts for me. This issue is definitely worth owning -- I'll be rereading these stories often!
- Apex Magazine - Issue 12
on July 16, 2010
This issue features items from Apex's Dark Faith anthology, which looks interesting -- and if the two stories are an indication of the quality, then I'm all over it.
'City of Refuge' by Jerry Gordon was my hands down favorite -- I'm a sucker for dystopias anyway, never mind ones involving the undead and underground religious movements.
- The Princess Of Egypt Must Die
on Jan. 28, 2013
This is another juicy slice of historical awesomeness from Stephanie Dray. I've fallen hard for Dray's Cleopatra's Daughter series, a kind of magical historical trilogy that is dark, unapologetic, epic, and fun. So when I saw this short story, I did grabby hands and got started.
I know nothing of the historical Arsinoe II, but being aware of Dray's dedication to historical accuracy, I sat back and let the story unfold.
Arsinoe is one of the pharaoh's daughters, sweet and eager to be loved, teased mercilessly by her older, ambitious half-sister. When contracted into marriage to the King of Thrace, she finds some measure of happiness in her new home among her friendly in-laws. But good things rarely happen to royalty, and Arsinoe has some pretty awful things happen.
This is a short story -- which was too bad because I seriously wanted more! This story is more straight-up historical (rather than magical historical or historical fantasy), for those who care, and is a great intro to Stephanie Dray if you're new to her.
Full review can be found at my blog: http://unabridged-expression.blogspot.com/2013/01/the-princess-of-egypt-must-die-by.html