Sequels seldom get the same attention and interest as the first film that launched a popular and enduring franchise. Regardless if it is the first film of a series or the tenth, behind each project there are individuals who are passionate about what they are working on, looking to deliver a final product that fans will enjoy. Finally, that perennial “middle child” - the sequel - is getting its day in the new CLASH Books titled Sequelland: A Story of Dreams and Screams from author Jay Slayton-Joslin.
Madeleine Holly-Rosing’s short story, “Here Abide Monsters,” was originally published in the Steampunk anthology, Some Time Later, which I had the pleasure of reviewing a few years ago. Set in the world of Holly-Rosing’s Boston Metaphysical Society, it tells the story of Duncan, a young Irish lad in pre-Civil War United States, attempting to lead Mae, an escaped slave, to freedom and safety.
I have to admit that I bought the first Murderbot novella because Amazon’s algorithms kept forcing it in my face every time I got on the site. It had a bunch of Hugo Awards attached to it. Plus, it sounded pretty cool, so I bought the audio book for when I was at the gym. (Yes, that was the time when we could all go to the gym.) It was funny, irreverent, and had me hooked. It also helped that the actor doing the narration was awesome, so I bought the rest for when I traveled to comic cons. (Miss those, too.) Soon, my husband couldn’t get enough. It was a no-brainer to pick up the novel when it came out.
Freedom and the search for truth are the underlying themes in this sequel to Margaret Atwood’s book, The Handmaid’s Tale, and the show on Hulu. A driving force in many people’s lives and aspirations, this story takes us deep into what it means personally for three women whose lives intertwine in unsuspecting ways.
Veda Adeline thinks she understands her world quite well. As a Basso, her role is keeping her head down to avoid unwanted Dogio attention, carefully following societal rules, and, above all else, never being out before sunrise or after sundown. Her best friend Nico may be a Dogio, but as they’ve grown up, it’s become clear that they live in different worlds. A chance mistake throws Veda’s whole world into chaos, and she quickly learns that the night may not be her biggest fear; the harsh rays of the sun can kill as well as nurture.
We're back one last time with the Young Adventurer's Guide series of Dungeons & Dragons books. At least for now, Dungeons & Dragons: Wizards & Spells will be the last in a series that captured my heart back in July of 2019. If you haven’t been following the series, it began with Warriors & Weapons, followed by Monsters & Creatures, and then Dungeons & Tombs. Now, Wizards & Spells wraps up the ensemble by diving into the magic at the heart of D&D.
Jane Stitch doesn’t know who she is. This isn’t the result of some variety of amnesia or a run-of-the-mill case of existential angst. No, Jane is having an issue with her identity because she is a monster of the “made by Frankenstein” variety. She is literally made up of half a dozen different women, and these women are starting to encroach on what peace of mind Jane has been able to find.
Tales of the Lost: Volume 1 – We all Lose Something! is a themed-anthology from Things in the Well publishing which has established itself as a publisher of such focused short story collections. As the name implies, the theme from Tales of the Lost is the concept of lost things, interpreted by the anthology’s sixteen contributors in a variety of ways. This also means that the majority of stories in Tales of the Lost will lean toward the tragic and solemn side. As with watching Requiem for a Dream or Grave of the Fireflies, the craftsmanship and narratives of the stories within are well executed, but the subject matter can be quite difficult to negotiate emotionally. Sometimes, characters in the stories are seemingly punished for having lost something in their lives, even when circumstances are outside their control.