01 Ink & Sigil: Ink & Sigil Series
In this first book of Kevin Hearne's new Ink & Sigil series, patterns and inks have power; hobgoblins are insufferably mischievous but in rare cases redeemable; all manner of creatures coexist in and visit our world, although humans are generally unaware of this; and someone with power and greed is compromising the sacred old ways.
Hearne offers a playful, action-packed, magical, layered modern-day London. Al MacBharrais is a widower who uses unconventional methods to right wrongs, to ferret out those betraying his craft's secrets for nefarious purposes, and to protect
those he is loyal to.
The book takes a turn into real-life, weighty issues such as human trafficking while the characters' banter and affection for each other keeps you rolling right along. Published August 25, 2020.
02 My Lady Jane: The Lady Janies Series
I'd had My Lady Jane on my to-read list for a couple of years, and the only good news resulting from this inexplicable delay is that now all three of the books in the Lady Janies trilogy (each is a stand-alone creative retelling of the story of a famous Jane) are published, so there will be no impatient waiting for the others in the series.
Are you interested in a historical fiction retelling of the story of King Edward, Lady Jane Grey, and Mary Queen of Scots--with an oddball fantasy element in which the life-and-death conflict is not religion, but the rights and very existence of Eðians (those who shape shift into animal form, including the king)?
Yes. Yes, I think you are.
This is funny, and smart, with clever asides, wonderful character development, and fantastic banter. Irresistible. I loved it.
03 Soulless: The Parasol Protectorate Series
This series takes place in 1870s London, and the immensely appealing, practical, fearless character of Alexia Tarabotti navigates danger and helps achieve justice by using her smarts, eschewing societal tradition and limits on women, and demonstrating her ability to neutralize the supernatural abilities of werewolves, vampires, and other creatures.
In Soulless the gruff Lord Maccon is a mesmerizing werewolf who is aware of Alexia's lack of a soul. They drive each other batty and couldn't be a more unlikely pair--or do opposites attract?
I loooved this witty, romantic, action-packed steampunk novel from Gail Carriger. She's written five Parasol Protectorate series books and a short prequel, so if you're up for this one, you've got books and books ready to binge read.
Any new-to-you or longtime favorite oddball series you love?
I read these three books during the same span of time and delighted in each of them.