April begins and ends with a new book in two series I’m reading and loving. Today The Voyage of the Basilisk by Marie Brennan is released. It’s volume three in her Lady Trent series, which looks at dragons from a natural history perspective (the first book of the series is A Natural History of Dragons) set in a quasi-Victorian time period. Today’s book is over halfway through the series (which I think will be a 5 book series). If you like Victorian novels, natural history, memoirs, and adventure novels these books are all that and more. (Must type faster so I can start reading! I’ve made a big pot of strong tea and am ready to set sail!)
April ends with the publication of the fifth and final book in Mary Robinette Kowal’s Glamourist histories series. The elevator pitch for the series, as she has often said, is “Jane Austen with magic” but that scarcely does the series justice. For one thing, this is far better done than most other Austenesque novels. And for another, there’s more action than in Jane Austen’s novels. The first book Shades of Milk and Honey, is about as pure Austen as you can get, but in subsequent books our protagonists get into more trouble, all the while not breaking with the novel of manners and mores that Austen wrote. One book has a plot inspired by Emma and the upcoming final novel uses a little bit from Mansfield Park as its jumping off point. The authors are doing a book tour together. I saw them last year and highly recommend it. You can read a recent interview with each author (no spoilers): Sleeps with Monsters (Marie Brennan) and Mary Robinette Kowal On Saying Goodbye to the Glamourist Histories.