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QBD Reviews: Skyward by Brandon Sanderson

From Brandon Sanderson, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Reckoners series, Words of Radiance, and the internationally bestselling Mistborn series, comes the first book in an epic new series about a girl who dreams of becoming a pilot in a dangerous world at war for humanity's future.

What Our Readers Thought:

Typically a fantasy author, Sanderson's first sci-fi novel proves his credentials in this genre. Using a combination of mystery, intrigue, action and adversity, Sanderson weaves an exciting and engaging story that will leave you eager for more.

Cameron, Chatswood QBD

Branderson's most ambitious foray into YA yet! This breathtaking sci-fi novel tells the story of the human race clinging desperately to life, featuring a smart-talking sentient spaceship and a whole lot of action, this will leave you desperate for the next intsallment!

Jenna, Plenty Valley QBD

Having already proved his worth as a fantasy author both for his own creations and finishing the Wheel of Time series, Sanderson now proves he can write scifi too. Skyward is a story of following your dreams, overcoming your biases, and stepping out from the shadow of what people expect of you. Combined with masterfully crafted dogfights and his trademark twists, this is a book you cannot miss.

Matthew, Carousel QBD

Explore the world of The Priory of the Orange Tree with Samantha Shannon!

The first book in a new series by Samantha Shannon has hit our shelves and we're in love! With a vibrant world full of dragons, empires and action, it is unputdownable!

We are excited to have Samantha available to take us on a private tour around the world of The Priory of the Orange Tree.

"The Priory of the Orange Tree is set in a world that is both like and unlike ours. One of the books I used to research it was The Time Travellers’ Guide to Elizabethan England by Ian Mortimer. In a similar vein, I’d like to help the unwary traveller orient themselves in the fractured world I’ve spent the last three years building.

In CE 1005, the Kingdom of Hróth is the only country in the region known as the North. Ruled by the House of Hraustr, which triumphed in the War of the Twelve Shields, it is a land of deep forests, magnificent glaciers, and snowbound plains. Among its exports are forest glass and sunstone. If luck is with you, you might catch a glimpse of its famous rainbow lights in the sky.

Sail across the frigid Ashen Sea and you will find the Queendom of Inys, which has been ruled by the House of Berethnet for over a thousand years. Sabran the Ninth sits on its throne. Inys is where the faith of the Virtues of Knighthood was founded, and all other countries in Virtudom owe religious fealty to it. It is said that while the Berethnet bloodline endures, the Nameless One – the enemy of humankind – can never return. Express even a hint of doubt in this belief, and you may be charged with heresy.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon OUT NOW

Inys is the northernmost nation in the West. The other two countries in this region are the Free State of Mentendon and the Kingdom of Yscalin, both situated on the continent of Edin. Mentendon is sworn to Virtudom, but Yscalin has renounced the faith and pledged allegiance to the Nameless One. King Sigoso has not been seen in public for some time, but his daughter, the Donmata Marosa, continues to hold court in the forbidding Palace of Salvation.

Mentendon is ruled by the House of Lievelyn, a relatively young dynasty that took power from the Vatten family. Aubrecht the Second is its High Prince, and its heir apparent is the eldest of his sisters, Princess Ermuna.

Travel further into Edin and you will find yourself in the warm climes of the South. The Domain of Lasia – a land of lush forests and broad, crashing rivers – and is ruled by the House of Onjenyu, the oldest of the royal dynasties. Lasia is well-known for its exquisite sculptures and copper jewellery. Somewhere in the Lasian Basin lies the Priory of the Orange Tree . . . but you will find it on no map. 

East of Lasia is the Ersyr, a desert nation, rich in skystone. Except for the occasional oasis and the Wareda Valley, which abounds with roses, the country is dry. The Tablet of Rumelabar, which contains a riddle that alchemists have endeavoured to solve for centuries, was discovered in the Sarras Mountains. A small river, the Bratar, runs from these mountains and pours into the Sea of Carmentum. Glittering on the seabed are thousands of treasures from the former Republic of Carmentum, which collapsed during the Grief of Ages.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon is available in store & online now.

To see the rest of the world, you’ll need to board a sturdy ship in Ostendeur or Drayasta and cross the dark sea called the Abyss, which teems with all manner of strange creatures. Greatsquid and baleens may bump against your ship in the dead of night. Sometimes, if you listen hard, you may hear a syren calling.

The Sepul Peninsula has been virtually lawless for centuries, with its former capital, Kawontay, overrun by pirates. However, it’s also the only place you’ll be able to disembark in the East without the authorities detaining you. To keep out the Draconic plague, the Empire of the Twelve Lakes and its closest neighbour, Seiiki, have closed their ports to all outsiders. Should you make it into Seiiki, be careful not to go astray in the Forest of the Wounded Bird, or to climb too high into the foothills of the merciless Mount Tego. Instead, consider waiting on the black sands of Cape Hisan until dusk, when thousands of tiny sea creatures light up the shore. 

In the Empire of the Twelve Lakes, prepare to be dazzled by snow-capped mountain ranges, flower-peppered meadows, and of course, the lakes themselves. Stand by one for long enough, and you may see a pair of horns break the surface – a water dragon, unfurling from the depths. "

Immerse yourself in The Priory of the Orange Tree today! Available in stores and online now.

QBD Reviews: Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte 

Four Queens. A divided nation. A ruthless pickpocket. A noble messenger. And the murders that unite them.

Astrid Scholte's debut novel is an enthralling fast-paced murder mystery where competing agendas collide with deadly consequences. 

Keralie Corrington is a talented pickpocket. She steals for the black market in her quadrant. Her nation is divided into four regions, each strictly separated from the other. Four queens, one from each quadrant, rule as one.

When Keralie steals a particularly valuable item from a messenger, she discovers she's intercepted instructions to murder the queens. Hoping to find the culprit, Keralie teams up with Varin Bollt. But with Keralie and Varin each keeping secrets, everything is at stake. And no one can be trusted in a world full of ruthless thieves, black markets, a golden palace, daring heists, royal intrigue, noble messengers, forbidden love, four queens - each with a secret, and, of course, murder.

Four Dead Queens is released on March 4th 2019. To pre-order Four Dead Queens click here.

 

What an impressive debut! I was lucky enough to receive an advanced reading copy and upon seeing the cover and synopsis was instantly excited; devouring this wondrous story as fast as my eyes could take me. My imagination worked overtime attempting to create accurate images in my mind of the vastly different quadrants, all the while failing to truly grasp how these sectors are so geographically close together yet feel like they are from completely different worlds. I was taken from period costume with corsets and bonnets and a quadrant with no electricity to dermasuits and comm chips and technology so advanced it blew my mind! I was introduced to characters I immediately wanted to know more about and as the story progressed, was constantly surprised to discover new things about them I wouldn't have guessed.

This was a pretty cruise-y novel to begin with, an easy read that wrapped me up in the stunningly creative world Astrid has created until just past half way when the rugs started ripping out from under me with twists I never saw coming- much praise for an author who can still do that so successfully! I truly loved this book, a standing ovation from me as I (not so) patiently wait for Astrid's next masterpiece (please!)

~ Taegen , QBD Loganholme

Reviewsday: The Survivors by Kate Furnivall

The Survivors was one of the most complex, gripping historical thrillers I have read. This is the first novel I have read of Kate Furnivall's, and I was thoroughly engrossed from the first page.

Following a story line not common of novels set in the Second World War, The Survivors is not a story of concentration camps or war scenes, but the aftermath of war and the long lasting effects on civilians who have lost everything. The shadow of war lingers heavily over the characters of this novel. Klara and her daughter Alicja suffered through a long and almost deathly journey to get to the Graufeld Displaced Persons Camp after being reunited after the war. After losing Klara's hubsand, Alicja's father during the war, their home was bombed, leaving them with nothing. Far from finding the safety and security they expect at the camp, Klara discovers that a mysterious figure from her past has arrived at the camp, and she fears for both her life and her daughters'.
Who is this man, and what events of her past have led her to fear him so much? And what did Klara do to fear his revenge?

The Survivors shows the depths of a mother's love, and the lengths she will go to in order to protect her child. A story of love and loss, of hope and of despair, it will keep you hooked from the first page. It kept me on the edge of my seat through the intense war scenes, the thrilling journey to freedom, and a fight for survival. The twist at the end had tears streaming down my face, and I wanted to read this book all over again.

I highly recommend The Survivors for fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz, The Love That I Have, and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, or just for any fans of well written and researched historical fiction.

~ Coreena, QBD Morayfield

Introducing: Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak

It was in 2005 that Markus Zusak's 'The Book Thief' first hit shelves. Death’s narration of Liesel Meminger’s love affair with books in Nazi Germany remains an international bestseller and modern classic beloved by millions. Now he is back with a new gripping page turner -  Bridge of Clay!

Bridge of Clay is about a boy who is caught in the current – of destroying everything he has, to become all he needs to be. He’s a boy in search of greatness, as a cure for memory and tragedy. Clay Dunbar builds a bridge to save his family, but also to save himself. It’s an attempt to transcend humanness, to make a single, glorious moment: A miracle and nothing less.

Started when he was a teenager, Bridge of Clay has been many years in the making for Markus Zusak ; “Thirteen years is probably long enough between books, and I quit this one so many times …The thing is, I also knew I could never quite give it up completely. People would say, ‘Just write one of your other ideas,’ but that was the thing – there were no other ideas. Everything was going into this. Now I can finally say I love it, but not in a way of thinking it’s good, or great; it isn’t. It’s itself – and if nothing else, I know it’s big-hearted. It’s a boy in search of a miracle, and that’s how I feel about finishing it. Every book we write means something to us, but sometimes a book means everything – and Bridge of Clay, for me is that latter type: the book you have to fight for, but is all the more rewarding.

Bridge of Clay will be published by Pan Macmillan Australia on the 9th of October 2018.

Preorder your copy in store or online here: Bridge Of Clay

Read a sample chapter: Growing Up The Dunbar Way

All quotes and descriptions have been obtained from media releases authored by Pan Macmillan Australia

About the author:

Markus Zusak is the author of five books, including the international bestseller, The Book Thief, which spent more than a decade on the New York Timesbestseller list, and is translated into more than forty languages – establishing Zusak as one of the most successful authors to come out of Australia.

His books have been awarded numerous honours ranging from literary prizes to readers choice awards to prizes voted on by booksellers. In 2013, The Book Thief was adapted to film, starring Academy Award winner Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, and Sophie Nelisse (as Liesel Meminger). 

Zusak’s much-anticipated new novel, Bridge of Clay, is set for release in October 2018 in the USA, the UK and Australia, with foreign translations to follow.

Markus Zusak grew up in Sydney, Australia, and still lives there with his wife and two children.