Waiting on Wednesday – Cave 13 by Jonathan Maberry

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  In my latest Waiting on Wednesday, I dive into one of my most anticipated books for the second half of 2023 with the awesome new thriller by Jonathan Maberry, Cave 13.

Cave 13 Cover


I have made no secret over the last few years that I am a massive fan of talented thriller author Jonathan Maberry who always wows me with some elaborate and over-the-top novels.  I first got into Maberry when I started reading his iconic Joe Ledger series, which follows a paramilitary agency who take out villains with ambitious technological plans.  The Joe Ledger series was so damn cool and featured a range of stories that set the protagonist against zombies, realistic vampires, eldritch horrors, alien spacecraft and insane terrorist groups.  All the books in this series were extremely epic and I loved all of them, including Patient Zero, The Dragon Factory, The King of Plagues, Assassin’s Code, Extinction Machine, Code Zero, Predator One, Kill Switch, Dogs of War and Deep Silence.

Maberry has also dived outside the thriller genre many times and I have had the pleasure of reading several of these books recently.  This includes the fantastic horror novel Ink (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2020) and his recently released Kagen the Damned dark fantasy series.  This series includes the outstanding and brutal novel Kagen the Damned (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2022) and his early 2023 book, Son of the Poison Rose.  I have had a wonderful time with each of these novels, and I honestly expected that the next Maberry novel I would have the opportunity to read would be the third Kagen the Damned book probably coming out next year.  However, it looks like we’re going to be lucky to get two Maberry books this year as there is a very intriguing thriller coming out in a couple of months.

This upcoming book is Cave 13, which will be the third book in Maberry’s ongoing Rogue Team International series.  The Rogue Team International books are a sequel series to the Joe Ledger novels which follows the same protagonists as they engage in more international escapades against some very deadly foes.  This sequel series has proved to be an excellent continuation of the Joe Ledger books and I have had a lot of fun with these new novels, including Rage (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2019) and Relentless (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2021).  I have been waiting for the third book in the series for a while now and I was very excited to discover that Cave 13 is coming out in late August 2023.  I mentioned this book in my Winter TBR list last week, and I thought this would be a good opportunity to highlight it again in a Waiting on Wednesday post.

Plot Synopsis:

Joe Ledger and Rogue Team International plunge into mortal peril as this new and deadly arms race threatens to ignite new wars throughout the Middle East.

After years of searching, a new cave filled with Dead Sea Scrolls is found, and among them are bizarre books of actual magic. Terrorist groups and multinational corporations scramble to acquire these treasures in the hopes that magic is the true WMD of the 21st Century. But everyone who goes near those scrolls goes insane. The fabric of reality is shredding. Is this the result of ancient magic, or is it a new bioweapon that fractures the mind of anyone exposed?

Cave 13 pits Joe Ledger against warring factions of ideological terrorism, corporate greed, and massive international crime syndicates in what might well become a new Age of Miracles.

While the details in this plot synopsis are a tad light, it definitely sounds like Cave 13 is going to be another epic book.  Crazy diseases in an ancient cave filled with the Dead Sea Scrolls is a very intriguing concept, and it is one that I know Maberry can do some amazing things with.  Pitting Joe Ledger and Rogue Team International against a group of deadly arms dealers, terrorists, criminals and corporate types should be pretty damn epic, and I look forward to seeing if any recurring enemies or organisations make an appearance.  Maberry always makes such elaborate plots and conspiracies in his novels, and I am very interested in seeing how he manages to work this archaeological discovery into a world ending narrative.

On top of this awesome sounding story, I also am very keen to see what is happening to the main characters featured in the series.  Maberry always does such a good job of building up his various cast members and dealing with their complex problems, and there are several ongoing storylines that I hope he picks up on again.  I particularly want to see more of protagonist Joe Ledger, who has been going through even more trauma than usual in recent books, including going off the murderous deep end in the last novel.  I am sure that this is something Maberry will dive into in some detail, and I am highly invested in finding out how this character is going and what mental chaos he is experiencing.  It will also be very cool to see what new complex and motivated villain appears in Cave 13, especially after some of the compelling and unique figures Maberry has created in the past.  While I am assuming that Cave 13 will probably feature a new antagonist, there is always the possibility that certain recurring bad guys can reappear here, and I love seeing the author diving into the deadly histories they have with Ledger and his team.  There is one particularly deadly and chaotic villain I would love to see more of, although he might be a bit busy over in the Kagen the Damned universe to make an appearance here.

Look, if I am being honest here, there is absolutely no way in hell that I am not going to have an incredible time with Cave 13 when it comes out.  Maberry’s trademark combination of elaborate storylines, over the top violence, and complex characters never fails to enthral me, and I have very little doubt that he won’t do that again in Cave 13.  I am also already extremely hooked on the Rogue Team International books and any new entry that Maberry produces is going to be epic.  As such, I am predicting that this will be one of my favourite books of the year and I cannot wait to get my hands on a copy as soon as possible, especially in its audiobook format with Ray Porter narrating it.


Waiting on Wednesday – Storming Heaven by Miles Cameron

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  For this week’s Waiting on Wednesday, I check out the epic upcoming fantasy novel, Storming Heaven, the latest book from acclaimed author Miles Cameron.

Storming Heaven Cover


Few of my regularly consumed authors have such a diverse catalogue of books than the very talented Miles Cameron.  The pseudonym of historical fiction author Christian Cameron (who has also released thriller novels with his father Kenneth Cameron under the joint pseudonym Gordon Kent), Cameron has released a huge number of books across the genres in recent years.  While I love some of his historical novels, I have been really getting into his outstanding fantasy and science fiction books.  Not only did he majorly impress me with his epic Master and Mages series, which featured Cold Iron and Dark Forge (one of my favourite novels and audiobooks of 2019), but I loved his first science fiction novel Artifact Space (one of my favourite books of 2021).

Cameron kept the hits coming last year with the amazing novel, Against All Gods, which served as the beginning of The Age of Bronze series.  This awesome book was set in a dark new fantasy world ruled over by a dark pantheon of gods, who murdered the previous gods of the realm and keep the current inhabitants stuck in a permanent bronze age.  The plot of Against All Gods introduced several desperate heroes who, after annoying the gods, become caught up in the webs of a trickster god with a serious grudge to destroy their all-powerful oppressors.  I deeply enjoyed this outstanding book due to its great story and elaborate new setting, which combined to create quite a gripping read.  Against All Gods was one of my favourite books of 2022 and I have been looking forward for the sequel for some time.

Well, it looks like I won’t have too much longer to wait as Cameron is releasing the second The Age of Bronze novel later this year, Storming HeavenStorming Heaven will see the scattered protagonists from the first book engage in several plans to attack the gods and finally get the justice they deserve, while fighting off cannibals, divine agents, and the pantheon itself.  Based on how epic Against All Gods was, I know that Storming Heaven is going to be pretty damn incredible and I have very high hopes for it.  This is already one of my most anticipated fantasy novels of 2023 and I cannot wait to see how impressive and cool Storming Heaven turns out.

Plot Synopsis:

Before iron helmets and steel swords, when dragons roamed the world, was an age of bronze and stone, when the Gods walked the earth, and people lived in terror.

A scribe, a warlord, a dancer, a mute insect and a child should have no chance against the might of the bickering gods and their cruel games. But the gods themselves are old, addicted to their own games of power, and now their fates may lie in the hands of mere mortals . . .

By divine plan a plague of cannibals has been unleashed across the world, forming an armada which preys on all who cross their path. Meanwhile the people who allied against the gods have been divided, each taking their own path to attack the heavens – if they can survive the tide of war which has been sent against them.

All they need is the right distraction, and the right opportunity, to deal a blow against the gods themselves . . .

An original, visceral epic weaving together the mythologies of a dozen pantheons of gods and heroes to create something new and magical, this tale of the revolt against the tyranny which began in Against All God s is a must read from a master of the fantasy genre.

Waiting on Wednesday – Ripper by Shelley Burr

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  For this latest Waiting on Wednesday, I highlight a great new upcoming Australian crime fiction novel from one of the breakout authors of 2022 with Ripper by Shelley Burr.

Ripper Cover

Last year I had the very great pleasure of reading the fantastic first novel from debuting Australian author Shelley Burr, Wake.  Set in a dying rural town out in the middle of the Australian outback, Wake examined an infamous crime where a young girl disappeared from her house without a trace, never to be seen again.  19 years later, two determined people with their own traumas attempt to find out what happened to the missing girl, including her haunted twin sister and a professional investigator with secret reasons for trying to solve the mystery.  Wake ended up being an outstanding novel and I loved how its compelling and intense mystery unfolded while also expertly showing off the desolate local landscape.  This was such an amazing read and it ended up being one of my top debuts and favourite Australian fiction novels of 2022.

Due to how impressive her first book turned out, I have been eager to see what Burr would come up with next and I was very happy that details about her second book was recently released.  This second book is Ripper, which is currently set for release in August 2023, and will take the reader to a new outback town with a murderous past, this time as the location of a serial killer’s final three murders.

Plot Synopsis:

Gemma Guillory has lived in Rainier her entire life. She knows the tiny town’s ins and outs like the back of her hand, the people like they are her family, their quirks as if they were her own.

She knows her once-charming town is now remembered for one reason, and one reason only. That three innocent people died. That the last stop on the Rainier Ripper’s trail of death seventeen years ago was her innocuous little teashop. She knows that the consequences of catching the Ripper still haunt her police officer husband and their marriage to this day and that some of her neighbours are desperate – desperate enough to welcome a dark tourism company keen to cash in on Rainier’s reputation as the murder town.

 When the tour operator is killed by a Ripper copycat on Gemma’s doorstep, the unease that has lurked quietly in the original killer’s wake turns to foreboding, and she’s drawn into the investigation. Unbeknownst to her, so is a prisoner named Lane Holland.

 Gemma knows her town. She knows her people. Doesn’t she?

sounds like it is going to be quite an awesome book.  I love the idea of returning to another town whose reputation has been tainted by a notorious crime, and the setting of Ripper is pretty cool with its connection to the Rainier Ripper.  Seeing a dark tourist company coming to town, only to be targeted by a copycat at the place of the original killer’s last stand sounds fantastic, especially as it is going to reopen all the wounds the previous killings left open.

I have no doubt that Burr will produce an excellent mystery around that premise, however, the thing that is really interesting to me about Ripper’s plot synopsis is the reference to the prisoner Lane Holland.  Holland was one of the protagonists of Wake, so it looks like Ripper is going to be a direct sequel to Burr’s first book.  I am very interested in seeing Burr continue Holland’s story from Wake, especially as the character’s attempts to stop his terrible father saw him sent to jail, and it will be cool to see how the author brings him into this latest story.  While I was definitely going to seek out Burr’s new book no matter what, the fact that is a sequel is a major selling point to me and Ripper is now one of the books I most excited for in the next few months.  Ripper has a ton of potential and I look forward to seeing how this talented new Australian author follows up her first epic novel.

Waiting on Wednesday – Everyone on This Train is a Suspect by Benjamin Stevenson

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  In this latest Waiting on Wednesday, I highlight a fantastic upcoming novel that is likely to be one of the funniest and most compelling Australian reads of 2023 with Everyone on This Train is a Suspect by Benjamin Stevenson.

Everyone on this Train is a Suspect Cover


One of the benefits of living in Australia as I have the great pleasure of receiving and reading multiple Australian novels each year, which has really introduced me to some fantastic writers.  One of the most solid and fun in recent years is Benjamin Stevenson, who has really made his mark on the Australian crime fiction landscape.  Previously known as a comedian with his twin brother, Stevenson made his crime fiction debut back in 2018 with the impressive murder mystery Greenlight.  Released as Trust Me When I Lie and She Lies in the Vines outside of Australia, Greenlight was an excellent novel that followed a guilt-ridden true-crime documentary maker who might have gotten a murderer out of jail.  This was an outstanding read and Stevenson followed it up in 2020 with the sequel book Either Side of Midnight (one of my favourite Australian books of 2020) which saw his protagonist investigate another elaborate murder made to look like a very public suicide.  Both these books were extremely good and I loved the compelling combination of clever mystery and a complex protagonist.

While I enjoyed his original two crime fiction novel, I personally don’t think that Stevenson really hit his stride as an author until last year when he presented his epic read, Everyone in my Family Has Killed SomeoneEveryone in my Family Has Killed Someone was a brilliant and captivating novel that saw the protagonist recount a complex family tale in memoir format of a very complicated family reunion at a ski resort where the guests started ending up murdered.  Of course, everyone in the family is a potential suspect as, like the title of the book suggests, they have all been responsible for someone’s death in the past.  Not only was this a very clever and entertaining story, but Stevenson also loaded the plot with a ton of humour while also making a ton of homages to classic whodunnits and locked room mysteries.  Everyone in my Family Has Killed Someone was an exceptional novel that got an easy five-star rating from me and ended up being one of the best Australian novels of 2022.

I really, really loved Everyone in my Family Has Killed Someone, as it was such a fantastic novel, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Stevenson was planning a sequel to it with the focus of this article, Everyone on This Train is a Suspect, which is set for release in October 2023.  As the name suggests, this new novel will see the protagonist of Everyone in my Family Has Killed Someone get involved in another series of murders, this time aboard a train setting.

Plot Synopsis:

Ernest Cunningham returns in a deliciously witty locked room (train) mystery.

When the Australian Mystery Writers’ Society invited me to their crime-writing festival aboard the Ghan, the famous train between Darwin and Adelaide, I was hoping for some inspiration for my second book. Fiction, this time: I needed a break from real people killing each other. Obviously, that didn’t pan out.

The program is a who’s who of crime writing royalty:

the debut writer (me!)
the forensic science writer
the blockbuster writer
the legal thriller writer
the literary writer
the psychological suspense writer.

But when one of us is murdered, six authors quickly turn into five detectives. Together, we should know how to solve a crime.

Or commit one.

How can you find a killer when all the suspects know how to get away with murder?

Oh dear, now this is going to be pretty damn hilarious.  Look I was already hyped about Stevenson’s new novel well before I knew the plot details, but the above synopsis is so fun.  There are so many layers to this upcoming story, including the clear Murder of the Orient Express homages, the setting aboard the iconic Ghan train, and the fact that every suspect on the train is a mystery writer of some variety.  The idea that one of these authors (which includes the protagonist) is a potential killer and they are using their literary skills to get away with it is brilliant and has a lot of potential from a mystery and narrative perspective.

However, the thing that I am most looking forward to in Everyone on This Train is a Suspect is the way that Stevenson will no doubt lovingly lampoon every single one of these different crime fiction sub-genres in his own fantastic way.  He did such an outstanding job of both satirising and exemplifying the whodunnit novel in his last book, which is what I assume he is planning for the sequel.  Simultaneously examining and making fun of several different crime fiction genres is going to be a big ask from the author, but I honestly have no doubt he can pull it off and turn it into something special for all crime fiction readers.

Look, based on how good Stevenson’s previous novels, especially Everyone in my Family Has Killed Someone, was, there was very little chance that I wouldn’t have grabbed this book later this year.  But the fact that Everyone on This Train is a Suspect is an awesome sequel to his previous fantastic novel which aims to further reference and examine fun crime fiction elements is a major selling point to me.  Stevenson honestly gets better with every book he writes, and this new novel has so much damn potential as a result.  As such, I have no doubts whatsoever that Everyone on This Train is a Suspect is going to be a remarkable read and I am fully expecting it to be one of the absolute best Australian novels of the year.

Waiting on Wednesday – 2023 Warhammer 40,000 Novels

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  For this week’s Waiting on Wednesday I return to one of my favourite franchises, the Warhammer 40,000 universe, and look at four epic upcoming tie-in novels coming out in the next few months that I am extremely eager to get my hands on.

I have been having a particularly good year for Warhammer 40,000 fiction as I dive further and further in the franchise by reading a ton of outstanding books.  There is something about this grim and entertaining franchise that deeply appeals to me, and I have had an exceptional time getting through various books from this universe that feature brilliant authors, elaborate storylines, and a fun mixture of genres and sub-genres.  2023 has been particularly Warhammer intensive for me as I spent a ton of time earlier in the year reading several great books so I could list all my absolute favourite Warhammer 40,000 novels, which turned out extremely well.  Even since then I have been diving even deeper into the franchise, with additional books from the Gaunt’s Ghosts series by Dan Abnett, such as Necropolis, Honour Guard and The Guns of Tanith, filling up my Throwback Thursday posts, while I only just published a review for the cool standalone novel Warboss by Mike Brooks.  However, 2023 is far from over as there are still several epic new Warhammer 40,000 novels set for release.  As such, I thought I would take this opportunity to dive into the four upcoming Warhammer 40,000 novels I am most excited for, all of which are from new-to-me authors and which sound pretty damn incredible.

The first book I want to highlight in this post is the outstanding new Warhammer Crime novel, The King of the Spoil by Jonathan D. Beer.  The Warhammer Crime sub-franchise of Warhammer 40,000 is a slick and cool series of crime fiction novels that make great use of the franchises background to create some amazing reads.  Set at various points in the vast, lawless city of Varangantua, the Warhammer Crime novels have been some of my favourite books in the franchise, especially as each novels use different crime fiction elements perfectly.  Some of the best examples of this include the crime thriller romps The Wraithbone Phoenix and Dredge Runners by Alec Worley, the noir-inspired Grim Repast by Marc Collins, the intriguing buddy cop read Flesh and Steel by Guy Hayley, and the more classic crime fiction novel Bloodlines by Chris Wraight.  All these Warhammer Crime books have beyond exceptional, and I have been very eager for a new entry, which is why I am particularly excited for The King of the Spoil.

The King of the Spoil Cover


The King of the Spoil, which is currently set for release on 4 July 2023, is another intriguing crime fiction read, set in a whole new area of Varangantua, known as the Spoil.  This novel will see the return of Beer’s protagonist info-broker Melita Voronova, from the short story, Service, which appeared in the Sanction & Sin anthology book, as she is forced to investigate a murder in the most lawless part of the city.

Plot Synopsis:

Delve into the lawless underbelly of the vast city of Varangantua in this fantastic Warhammer Crime novel.

Within the vast sprawl of Varangantua lies the Spoil. It is a broken crossroads, forsaken by the Lex, abandoned by the city’s uncaring masters, where the only choice is a slow death in the manufactories, or a quick one on the street.

And it is in turmoil.

Andreti Sorokin, the gangster king whose vicious rule brought order to the Spoil, is dead, slain in the most brutal fashion.

Melita Voronova, skilled info-broker and reluctant agent of the imperious Valtteri cartel, is tasked with uncovering the mystery of who killed Sorokin, and preventing his fragile alliance of thugs and narco-pushers from collapsing into chaos.

As street-blades clash and gang leaders turn against one another, Melita’s instincts tell her there is a larger conspiracy at work. Someone has created this crisis not merely to disrupt the Spoil, but to overturn the foundations of Varangantua itself.

Unsurprisingly, I love the sound of The King of the Spoil, which has an epic sounding narrative to it.  Watching a complex info-broker character attempting to find out who killed a legendary gangster king should be amazing, and I have no doubt this story will be loaded with twists, betrayals and a full-on gang war.  I have had so much fun with some of the great mysteries in the other Warhammer Crime books, and this unique scenario has so much damn potential for an outstanding story.  While I haven’t read Beer’s previous short story about Melita Voronova, these novels are pretty good at reintroducing the reader to the characters, and I am sure that I will have no problem diving into this one.  Frankly, based on my previous very positive experiences with the Warhammer Crime series, as well as the awesome sounding plot above, I am very confident that The King of the Spoil is going to be one of the more entertaining novels of 2023 and I am so damn excited for it.

The next book I want to highlight is the excellent sounding read, Cypher: Lord of the Fallen by John French which is set for release on 18 July 2023.  French is a well-established Warhammer author who has written several great books in the past, and I am very interested in seeing his take on one of the most compelling characters in the extended canon, Cypher.  Cypher is a mysterious and sinister figure strongly associated with the Fallen, former members of the Dark Angels Space Marines who turned traitor and are now zealously hunted by their former brothers.  Cypher is a figure of intense anarchy whose deeds have haunted the Dark Angels for millennia as they try to hunt him down, and there is some real mystery behind his try identity and intentions.

Cypher - Lord of the Fallen Cover


Cypher: Lord of the Fallen is a very intriguing novel that will provide readers with a personal look at this mysterious figure as he tries to make his way through the most secure location in the universe, the Imperial Palace on Holy Terra.  This is another book with an exceptional plot to it, and I have to admit that I am highly intrigued to see what French pulls off in this book.

Plot Synopsis:

Delve into a great new story featuring the enigmatic Cypher!

As the Great Rift unfolds in the night sky above Terra and daemons walk upon the birth world of mankind, the Primarch Roboute Guilliman returns, heralding a dark new age.

During the breaking storm, Cypher and his band of Fallen escape from the most secure prison in the Imperium. Now loose in the Imperial Palace, they are hunted by warriors of the Dark Angels, forces of the Adeptus Custodes and Imperial Assassins. But what are Cypher’s intentions? Can anything or anyone be trusted?

Told from Cypher’s own, unreliable point of view, this tale of truth, lies and secrets sees one of the Imperium’s most mysterious figures make war at its very heart. But what are the true motivations of the Lord of the Fallen?

This sounds like another particularly cool Warhammer 40,000 novel as it will combine a great character with a fun story in the most iconic setting in the canon.  I love the idea of Cypher causing chaos in the Imperial Palace as everyone tries to hunt him adown and kill him, and it will no doubt result in several particularly intense scenes.  I also look forward to learning more about Cypher, although it sounds like he is going to be an unreliable narrator, which isn’t too surprising when you consider the character this book is focused on.  Thanks to how great this story sounds, I also have a lot of hopes for John French’s new book, and I cannot wait to read Cypher: Lord of the Fallen.  I will probably try to read the recently released novel, The Lion: Son of the Forest by Mike Brooks before I get to Cypher: Lord of the Fallen however, as the new details around the returning Dark Angels Primarch might tie into this book as well.

Longshot Cover


The third fantastic 2023 Warhammer 40,000 novel that I want to highlight is the compelling book Longshot by Rob Young which is part of the Astra Militarum sub-series that focuses on the soldiers of the Imperium of Man.  I have often said that some of the very best Warhammer 40,000 novels are those that focus on the normal, human soldiers who are thrust into some particularly dark and weird situations.  Some of my favourite books focused on these normal humans include the Gaunt’s Ghosts books, Steel Tread by Andy Clark, Outgunned by Denny Flowers, 13th Legion by Gav Thorpe and Catachan Devil by Justin Woolley, all of which have successfully captured these human experiences and produced some exceptional reads.  This is what I am really hoping for from Longshot, which has a deeply epic plot to it.

Plot Synopsis:

Explore the life of a Cadian Sharpshooter in this great Astra Militarum novel from Black Library!

Transplant. Cadian. Sniper. Legend.

Sergeant Darya Nevic is all of these and more… but behind the stories stands a soldier haunted by the unwelcome fame her successes have brought.

During the Cadian 217th’s assault on the manufactorum world of Attruso, Darya finds herself out of her depth in a war that is fought with words as much as with weapons. As a fearsome winter closes in and her men begin to die around her, she will be forced to confront her doubts and make an impossible choice: to become the figurehead her soldiers need, or to believe the unimaginable promises of the mysterious t’au.

With the fate of her regiment in her hands, which path will she choose?

This is another exceptional sounding Warhammer 40,000 novel that I will definitely be reading when it comes out in mid-August 2023.  I love the idea of a sniper novel, especially in the dark Warhammer 40,000 universe, which will no doubt bring out the grittiness and intensity of a sniper war.  However, it sounds like Longshot is going to dive deeply into its main character as she tries to balance being a legend and hero to her comrades, while also trying to survive the nefarious propaganda of the T’au.  I think that Young is trying to replicate a Stalingrad-esque battle, à la Enemy at the Gate in this book, with the sniper battle, propaganda, and cold, cramped city warfare.  I have a feeling that this is going to be one of the more emotionally powerful Warhammer 40,000 books of the year and it is definitely pretty high on my to-read list for the second half of 2023.

Creed-Ashes of Cadia Cover

The final upcoming Warhammer 40,000 book I want to focus on this week is the pretty significant sounding read, Creed: Ashes of Cadia by Jude Reid.  Now, anyone familiar with recent Warhammer 40,000 history will know the names Creed and Cadia, both of which have played major roles in the canon.  As such, any new book that focuses on them is going to be pretty damn important and that makes it very interesting for me.  As such, Creed: Ashes of Cadia, which is set for a later 2023 release, is going to be one of my most anticipated novels of the year.

Plot Synopsis:

What does it mean to be Cadian after the Fall?

Ursula Creed has come to terms with the loss of her home world. For decades she has built a glittering career in the furthest reaches of the Imperium, far from her legendary father’s shadow. But when unexpected orders arrive from the Avening Son himself, Roboute Guilliman, the new lord castellan realises that the past may not be ready to let her go.

Dispatched into shattered remains of Cadia in search of Ursarkar E. Creed’s final battle plans, Ursula finds the planet a hellscape full of deadly secrets. What horrors claim Cadia’s corpse as their domain? What became of those left behind? What orders did Creed leave for Cadia when all was lost? And, most troubling of all, how can she succeed where her illustrious father has already failed?

Now this is a Warhammer 40,000 book that could go some places.  Not only do we get introduced to a new interesting character, one with a connection to the legendary Ursarkar Creed, but we also get to see the destroyed planet of Cadia after the catastrophic destruction of the 13th Black Crusade.  Based on this plot scenario alone, this is probably going to be one of the most important and impressive Warhammer 40,000 novels of the year and I am pretty damn excited for that.  I cannot wait to see what lies behind on Cadia and it’s going to be one of the first major views of it we’ve seen in years.  I am also very curious to see if they’ll dive into the fate of Creed senior, and it will be interesting to see why the man’s final battle plans were so important.  Like the rest of the books, I think that Creed: Ashes of Cadia has some major potential, and this one will probably have a great blend of universe building and character development.

Based on how much I have rambled on over the last few pages, I think it is clear that I am very, very keen on all these upcoming Warhammer 40,000 novels.  All four sound extremely epic and unique in their own way and I have very little doubt that I will love every single I spend with them.  Knowing me, I will probably get these novels as audiobooks, which is my preferred format for Warhammer fiction and I cannot wait to hear how each of these different tales unfolds.

Waiting on Wednesday – The Queen of Days by Greta Kelly

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  In this week’s Waiting on Wednesday, I highlight a very cool upcoming fantasy novel with The Queen of Days by Greta Kelly.

The Queen of Days Cover


I’m always in the mood for epic new fantasy series and books and it looks like there is a very awesome one the horizon with The Queen of Days.  Written by established author Greta Kelly, best known for her Warrior Witch duology, The Queen of Days is an impressive sounding upcoming book currently set for release in late October 2023.

I came across the synopsis for The Queen of Days a few weeks ago and I was instantly intrigued by its awesome and elaborate sounding plot that will see a team of thieves go up against everyone in a fantasy city, including a powerful god in a massive, world-ending adventure.  I love the idea of a cool fantasy heist novel that has some major repercussions for the protagonists, and this sounds particularly good especially with its cast of eccentric and over-the-top characters.  Based on the synopsis alone, I am already very excited about The Queen of Days and I have a feeling that this will end up being on the most enjoyable fantasy novels of 2023.  As such, I am already quite keen to get myself a copy of this awesome book and I look forward to reading and reviewing The Queen of Days later in the year.

Plot Synopsis:

For Balthazar and his family of thieves, stealing a statue during the annual celebration of the god Karanis was just a good bit of fun…or a way to stick it to the governor who murdered his parents. And yeah, the small fortune in reward doesn’t hurt—even if his boss also hired the mysterious Queen of Days to join the crew as “the weapon of last resort…”

Whatever that means.

But Bal doesn’t know the ceremony isn’t simply empty words and dusty tradition; it’s true magic. The kind of magic that rips open a portal for the god himself. Only the idol that Karanis planned on using for a body now lies broken at the Queen of Days’ feet. And half of it is missing.

With the aid of a lovable brawler, a society lady turned bomb maker, a disgraced soldier, and a time-eating demon, Bal must hunt down the missing half of the statue if he has any hope of earning his money, keeping his crew alive…and perhaps even saving all of humanity. But as his journey sends him racing through the city—and across realities—he discovers that doing all this might just doom the city.

The city be damned. It’s time to kill a god.

Waiting on Wednesday – Napoleon’s Spy by Ben Kane

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  For this latest Waiting on Wednesday, I take a look at an awesome upcoming historical fiction epic from one of the leading authors in the genre, with Napoleon’s Spy by Ben Kane.

Napoleon's Spy Cover


As many readers of my blog will be aware, I am a massive fan of the historical fiction genre, and I have reading it for years.  There is something about powerful battles and dances of intrigue in iconic historical settings that has always appealed to me, and it helps that this genre is chock full of talented and exceptional authors who know how to deliver a brilliant and exceptional read.

One of the best of these historical fiction authors is the always impressive Ben Kane.  Kane is a very well-established author who has produced several amazing series over the years with a variety of different historical backings.  The author is probably best known for his awesome Roman historical fiction, which has formed the backbone of his most excting works.  This includes his Forgotten Legion trilogy (which was some of the first historical fiction I ever read), his compelling Hannibal series, and the absolutely brutal Eagles of the Rome series.  Kane has also dived into other intriguing historical periods, including with his last series, The Lionheart books.  As the name suggests, The Lionheart series focused on the life of Richard the Lionheart, and contained some exceptional novels, including Lionheart and Crusader.  All of Kane’s books that I have read have been pretty damn good, and I love his ability to tell an exciting tale while also ramping up the historical detail.

Due to how good some of his previous novels have been, I am always very eager to see what Kane is writing next, and when I found out the details about his upcoming 2023 release, I got pretty damn excited.  That is because his next book, Napoleon’s Spy, will focus on a whole new historical period for Kane, the Napoleonic Wars, and will place the reader right into the heart of Napoleon’s invasion of Russia.

Napoleon’s Spy, which is set for release towards the end of May sounds like a particularly intriguing and outstanding novel.  I am very excited to see Kane’s take on the invasion of Russia and knowing him he will provide a highly detailed examination of the all the key events involved with it.  This, combined with an intriguing spy protagonist makes Napoleon’s Spy very appealing to me and I am exceedingly keen to get my hands on a copy as soon as I can.  This honestly has the potential to be one of the best historical fiction novels of 2023 and I will no doubt enjoy every second of it.

Plot Synopsis:

Russia, 1812. Has France finally met its match?

On the eve of the invasion of Russia, half-French, half-English Matthieu Carrey finds himself in the ranks of Napoleon’s five hundred thousand strong army. With Tsar Alexander seemingly ill-prepared, a French victory seems certain. The Grande Armee will obliterate everything in its path.

Carrey’s purpose is less clear. Blackmailed into becoming a spy in the emperor’s army, he hopes to follow his lover, a French actress who has gone to work in the Moscow theatre.

As supplies grow scarce and temperatures plummet, the Grande Armee begins to crumble. Caught up in the maelstrom of war, Carrey embarks on an epic journey, while the Russians circle like hungry wolves.

Hundreds of miles lie between Carrey and safety.

To reach it seems utterly impossible.

Waiting on Wednesday – Resurrection Walk by Michael Connelly

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  In this latest Waiting on Wednesday article, I check out the new Michael Connelly novel coming out later this year with Resurrection Walk.

Resurrection Walk Cover


Since the very start of my dive into the crime fiction genre, one of my favourite authors is easily the very talented Michael Connelly, who has been a fixture on the scene since the 1990s.  Known for his big, joint crime-fiction universe featuring several very recognisable protagonists, Connelly is a very impressive writer who has continued to produce captivating and enjoyable novels throughout his entire career.  Most crime fiction readers will be very familiar with his Bosch and Mickey Haller novels, as well as the related television adaptations, and Connelly has amassed over 35 highly regarded novels in his career.

I personally have had a great time reading several of his latest books, and I have enjoyed seeing all the different protagonists and crime fiction sub-genres that he utilises.  This includes the great police procedural novels in the Ballard and Bosch series, which sees two of Connelly’s best police protagonists team up to solve several cold cases.  All four of these novels, which include Dark Sacred Night, The Night Fire (one of my favourite books and audiobooks of 2019), The Dark Hours (one of my favourite books of 2021) and Desert Star (one of my favourite books of 2022), were extremely epic, and I really enjoyed the impressive partnership the two characters formed.  In addition, I have also enjoyed that latest Jack McEvoy novel, Fair Warning (one of my favourite books of 2020) and the latest Mickey Haller novel, The Law of Innocence.  Both these outstanding novels really showcased the differing storylines and approaches of their respective protagonists, and I had a wonderful time with both.

Due to how much I have enjoyed his last several books, I am always very keen to grab Connelly’s annual release as soon as it comes out.  So, I was naturally incredibly happy when they released some early details about his next book, Resurrection Walk, which is coming out in early November.  Resurrection Walk will be the 37th overall novel in Connelly’s connected crime fiction universe, as well as being the seventh Mickey Haller/The Lincoln Lawyer novel.

The Mickey Haller/Lincoln Lawyer novels follow the titular protagonist, unconventional defence attorney Mickey Haller, who is better known as the Lincoln Lawyer due to his tendency to practice the law out of the back of his Lincoln Town Car.  The Mickey Haller books have all been fun and exciting reads, and I really enjoy the legal thriller focused storylines which are interesting alternatives to more typical murder mystery novels he is known for.  Several adaptations of his work have also been done, including The Lincoln Lawyer film and the recent The Lincoln Lawyer television series, which is due a second season later this year.  I am very interested to see what new case Connelly has planned with Resurrection Walk, and it sounds like it is going to be another fun read.

Plot Synopsis:

Defence attorney Mickey Haller is back, taking the long shot cases, where the chances of winning are one in a million. He agrees to represent a woman in prison for killing her husband, a sheriff’s deputy. Despite her conviction four years earlier, she still maintains her innocence. Haller enlists his half brother, retired LAPD Detective Harry Bosch, as investigator. Reviewing the case, Bosch sees something that doesn’t add up, and a sheriff’s department intent on bringing a quick search for justice in the killing of one of its own.

The path to justice for both the lawyer and his investigator is fraught with danger from those who don’t want the case reopened. And they will stop at nothing to keep the Haller-Bosch dream team from uncovering what the deputy’s killing was really about.

Resurrection Walk
is shaping up to be another pretty cool Connelly novel, especially with the focus on the Lincoln Lawyer and his impossible defence cases.  Seeing Mickey attempt to free a potentially innocent women from prison is going to be really awesome, and I have a lot of love for the fun and unconventional courtroom scenes that this series is known for.  The focus on a deputy’s wife who was put away by her murdered husband’s colleagues is also a great scenario that opens so many intriguing story avenues, whether it be corrupt cops, incompetence or just plain old vengeance, that is going to add some awesome elements to the plot that I can’t wait to see.  Plus, it looks like there is the good old storyline of the police, and other interested parties, trying to sabotage Haller’s case before he can uncover anything damaging.

While the above all sounds cool, one of the most intriguing elements of Resurrection Walk is in the inclusion of Harry Bosch as a supporting character.  Bosch is Connelly’s longest running and most iconic protagonist for a reason and is always good to see this grizzled cop in action, especially after the revelations from the previous novel about his health.  Bosch has a very complicated relationship with Haller, his half-brother, and watching them team up always results in some great and emotionally charged scenes.  This is going to be in overdrive in Resurrection Walk as Bosch is dying of cancer and doesn’t have too much longer to live.  Resurrection Walk could possibly be Bosch’s last book and it wouldn’t surprise me if he ended up dying at some point in the story, either after some emotional goodbye to his brother or some heroic sacrifice.  This ensures that Resurrection Walk is a particularly interesting Connelly novel to check out, and if something big happens I want to find out pretty damn soon.

Overall, I have to say I am very excited to get my hands on the next upcoming Michael Connelly book.  Resurrection Walk sounds like it is going to be an outstanding read and I always love the exceedingly entertaining Lincoln Lawyer plots.  Resurrection Walk’s story sounds particularly interesting and I cannot wait to see how everything unfolds, especially if this is the book where Bosch finally dies.  This is easily one of my most anticipated reads of 2023 and I look forward to diving into it the second I get my hands on a copy.

Waiting on Wednesday – The Last Devil to Die by Richard Osman

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  In my latest Waiting on Wednesday I highlight the next epic entry in one of my favourite series at the moment with the upcoming fourth Thursday Murder Club novel by Richard Osman, The Last Devil to Die.

The Last Devil to Die Cover


Over few years, me, and many other book reviewers, have fallen in love with one of the most addictive, funniest, and heartfelt murder mystery series out there, the Thursday Murder Club books by British comedian Richard Osman.  I have been in love with the series since it first came out, and Osman’s debut novel, The Thursday Murder Club, was an exceptional five-star read.  This unique series follows four complex and entertaining retirees living in an English retirement village, who entertain themselves by solving murders, known as the Thursday Murder Club.  This first awesome novel had absolutely everything, including a brilliant mystery, amazing characters, and great British humour, all brought together by some dark and emotionally powerful moments.  This first novel ended up being one of my favourite books, debuts, and audiobooks of 2020, and I cannot recommend it enough.

After having so much fun with The Thursday Murder Club, there was absolutely no way I wasn’t going to follow it up and luckily Osman made sure to release a cool sequel in 2021 with The Man Who Died Twice.  This was an outstanding follow-up to the first book that did a good job of continuing several of the storylines and character arcs, while also introducing another great mystery.  This ended up being another amazing novel, and it was one of my top books and audiobooks of 2021.  The series continued to gain a ton of steam last year with the third exceptional novel, The Bullet That Missed.  This third book was just as good, if not better, than the original The Thursday Murder Club, and I once again fell in love with the epic writing and loveable characters.  As such, I had no choice but to give it another five-star rating and it was easily one of the best books and audiobooks I enjoyed in 2022.

Naturally, after having so many amazing experiences with this series, continuing it is a major reading priority for me.  I have kept a close eye out for details about the next entry, and I they just released the cover and a basic plot synopsis for the upcoming fourth book, The Last Devil to Die.  Set for release in September 2023, The Last Devil to Die, sounds really awesome (especially that title) and I am very excited to get my hands on it.

Plot synopsis:

You’d think you would be allowed to relax over Christmas, but not in the world of the Thursday Murder Club.

On Boxing Day, a dangerous package is smuggled across the English coast. When it goes missing, chaos is unleashed. The body count starts to rise – including someone close to the Thursday Murder Club – as our gang face an impossible search and their most deadly opponents yet.

With the clock ticking down and a killer heading to Cooper’s Chase, has their luck finally run out? And who will be ‘The Last Devil To Die’?

So, if my rant above wasn’t clear, I am going to get The Last Devil to Die come hell or high water, but it is always fun to find out some plot details in advance.  While the synopsis above isn’t too detailed, it does have some intriguing points that is making me even more excited for this upcoming book.  Firstly, I like the sound of a Christmas theme for this latest novel, and I imagine that is going to fit the fun British aesthetic of the series extremely well.  Next, the idea of a mysterious package arriving and leading to several murders, is pretty cool, and it will be interesting to see how that unfolds, especially with how it connects to the main characters.  Finally, the revelation that someone close to them is possibly going to die is pretty concerning, especially as Osman has done such a good job of building up an enjoyable supporting cast over the last three books.  As such, I am even more eager for The Last Devil to Die than I was before seeing this synopsis, which I didn’t think would be possible.

In addition to some of the details contained in the synopsis above, there are a lot of other cool things that I am very excited to see in The Last Devil to Die.  I am particularly keen for the unique and captivating main characters, especially as Osman writes all four of these hilarious retirees perfectly, and they serve as an excellent and funny bunch of narrators.  I love the way these four play off each other, and it will be great to see more of their specific character arcs, especially as some of them can be quite emotional or tragic at times.  It will be interesting to see who gets more of a focus in this novel, although I assume with the mysterious international package it will probably be another Elizabeth-heavy book, which I’m honestly fine with.  I also cannot wait to get more of Osman’s dry, British, and hilarious comedy, which as really made the last three books stand out.  I have such an amusing time reading through them, and it is particularly fun when the older characters manage to confound the younger characters who are constantly underestimating them.  If Osman brings all this, and more, into his next book, than I know I am going to absolutely love The Last Devil to Die.

Look, I don’t think I can be any clearer with the fact that I am deeply excited for this next Thursday Murder Club book.  Richard Osman can frankly do no wrong in my opinion, and I already know that The Last Devil to Die is going to top all my best-of lists for 2023.  I cannot wait till September to get The Last Devil to Die and I am very, very keen to see how the entire elaborate story unfolds.  I will probably try and get the audiobook version The Last Devil to Die, as the other Thursday Murder Club have been pretty exceptional in this format, and it will be interesting to see who the get as a narrator this time.  Overall, this is easily one my most anticipated books of 2023 and it is going to be magical.


Waiting on Wednesday – The Last True Templar by Boyd and Beth Morrison

Welcome to my weekly segment, Waiting on Wednesday, where I look at upcoming books that I am planning to order and review in the next few months and which I think I will really enjoy.  I run this segment in conjunction with the Can’t-Wait Wednesday meme that is currently running at Wishful Endings.  Stay tuned to see reviews of these books when I get a copy of them.  For this week’s Waiting on Wednesday, I take a look at an awesome upcoming historical fiction adventure with The Last True Templar by the fantastic writing team of Boyd and Beth Morrison.

The Last True Templar Cover


Last year I was lucky enough to receive a copy of the excellent novel, The Lawless Land, which, thanks to its exciting and compelling sounding story I eagerly started reading the moment I could.  Written by thriller author Boyd Morrison and historian Beth Morrison, The Lawless Land was an outstanding historical epic that saw an excommunicated knight and a runaway noblewoman team up to face off against a corrupt French cardinal, determined to become pope by any means necessary.  I really got pulled into this amazing read, which was loaded with cool historical detail, political intrigue, action, chase sequences, jousts, epic escapes, heists and even a full-on judicial dual to the death.  All this, and more, ensured that The Lawless Land was a pretty exceptional read, and it ended up being one of my favourite books of 2022.

As such, I have been eager to see if the authors were planning to provide some form of sequel or follow up to The Lawless Land, and it looks like my prayers have been answered.  That is because the Morrisons have a second entry in their Tales of the Lawless Land series, coming out later this year with The Last True Templar.  Set for release in September 2023, The Last True Templar will continue the story started in The Lawless Land and follow the first book’s protagonists as they travel through war-torn, plague ravished Europe in the 13th century.  The new adventure will see the two lost protagonists get involved in a deadly battle for control of a lost treasure, one that is connected to the infamous Knights Templar.

I love the sound of this cool upcoming book, although frankly I was going to grab this novel no matter what the plot contained, the first book was that much fun.  However, seeing the characters caught up in a hunt for another treasured relic is going to be awesome, and I assume that’s going to be a recurring theme of the series.  The Knights Templar and their hidden treasures are always a great inclusion and it will be interesting to see a more historical focused adventure, rather than a thriller set in modern times.  As such, I am extremely keen to get my hands on a copy of The Last True Templar and based on how much I enjoyed The Lawless Land, this is a must-read book for me.  I have a strong feeling that The Last True Templar is going to be one of the more entertaining and awesome historical reads of 2023, and it should be pretty damn epic.

Plot Synopsis:

A Perilous Quest. A Deadly Legacy.

Italy, 1351. English knight Gerard Fox and the resourceful Willa have come through a death-defying journey across war-torn Europe. Now looking towards their future together, they must first find a way to reconcile with their difficult pasts.

In a small village between Florence and Siena, Fox and Willa are caught up in a deadly ambush. After rescuing the enigmatic woman who is the target of the attack, they take refuge in her opulent villa and learn her heartbreaking story – a tale of loss, deception… and a burning desire for freedom.

Soon, Fox and Willa are involved in a perilous quest to save her family’s legacy… and to do so, they will have to solve a mystery that points the way to the fabled lost treasure of the Knights Templar.