Unnormal Normalcy

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Wishlist Wednesday (21)

Well, this is the final installment of WW for 2011, as crazy as it sounds. And yes, I managed to drag myself away from Skyrim long enough to make this post. Just kidding, though. I got the game for Christmas, and I love it, but I only play it at night when everyone else has gone to bed. I’m not very good at video games in general, so I try to avoid situations where people would laugh at me for attempting to play such a popular game. Plus, my brother is on Christmas Break and hardly stops playing the Xbox during the day. I don’t blame him, though, since our parents just got a new flat screen TV as their Christmas gift to each other. It’s so nice…

Anyway, to the actual point of this post.

The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud

Nathaniel is a boy magician-in-training, sold to the government by his birth parents at the age of five and sent to live as an apprentice to a master. Powerful magicians rule Britain, and its empire, and Nathaniel is told his is the “ultimate sacrifice” for a “noble destiny.”

If leaving his parents and erasing his past life isn’t tough enough, Nathaniel’s master, Arthur Underwood, is a cold, condescending, and cruel middle-ranking magician in the Ministry of Internal Affairs. The boy’s only saving grace is the master’s wife, Martha Underwood, who shows him genuine affection that he rewards with fierce devotion. Nathaniel gets along tolerably well over the years in the Underwood household until the summer before his eleventh birthday. Everything changes when he is publicly humiliated by the ruthless magician Simon Lovelace and betrayed by his cowardly master who does not defend him.

Nathaniel vows revenge. In a Faustian fever, he devours magical texts and hones his magic skills, all the while trying to appear subservient to his master. When he musters the strength to summon the 5,000-year-old djinni Bartimaeus to avenge Lovelace by stealing the powerful Amulet of Samarkand, the boy magician plunges into a situation more dangerous and deadly than anything he could ever imagine.

______________________________

The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett

As darkness falls after sunset, the corelings rise—demons who possess supernatural powers and burn with a consuming hatred of humanity. For hundreds of years the demons have terrorized the night, slowly culling the human herd that shelters behind magical wards—symbols of power whose origins are lost in myth and whose protection is terrifyingly fragile. It was not always this way. Once, men and women battled the corelings on equal terms, but those days are gone. Night by night the demons grow stronger, while human numbers dwindle under their relentless assault. Now, with hope for the future fading, three young survivors of vicious demon attacks will dare the impossible, stepping beyond the crumbling safety of the wards to risk everything in a desperate quest to regain the secrets of the past. Together, they will stand against the night.

______________________________

Mongrel by KZ Snow

Hunzinger’s Mechanical Circus, a rollicking seaside carnival where imagination meets machinery, seems like the only bright spot in the dreary city of Purinton. But a shadow is cast there one day by a tall, cloaked figure striding down the boardwalk and behaving in a most eccentric way — a man with strange eyes and strange ears and a mark at the base of his throat. He’s Fanule Perfidor, commonly known as the Dog King, and he isn’t welcome at the Circus. No resident of Taintwell is. They’re all Branded Mongrels, and they’re officially shunned.

So it’s understandable that Will Marchman, a young patent-medicine salesman, is wary when Perfidor approaches his stand and begins asking questions. Much to his chagrin, Will is beguiled as well. When the two men meet again at a public house in the city’s seediest district, all prejudice falls away. Lust takes over, then affection. An affair is born.

The naive but plucky pitchman soon becomes embroiled in a dangerous quest. Fanule suspects that Alphonse Hunzinger and Purinton’s civic leaders are responsible for the disappearance or incarceration of countless Branded Mongrels. But why? As Will’s passion and regard for his tormented lover grow, he’s determined to help Fanule get answers and prevent any further persecution…or worse.

With the aid of a dead and dismembered witch, a vulgar bounty hunter, and a dapper, voracious vampire, Fan and Will take on a group of ruthless enemies. If only they can stay together and stay alive long enough to see their plan through…

 

 

 

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December 28, 2011 - Posted by | Life, Wishlist Wednesday

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