Category Archives: Speculative Fiction

[Manga Review] Silver Diamond (v.21)

Silver Diamond

(Silver Diamond, #21: Puppet)

Sugiura Shiho

What rating would you give it?
5 of 5 Stars

Give us a summary.

(Synopsis by Publisher)
Believing in their strengths and bonds, Rakan and the others head to the capital. Watch as they gallantly step inside the battleground to save their comrades and the world in the midst of the rain which is believed to be the prelude to the prophesied “storm”!! This is the must-see volume 21, with 5 pages of the extra story “Puppets II” included!!

What did you think of the book?

The plot thickens! And we are pulled right along for the ride~~! There are such great moments in this book between Rakan and Chigusa, like one right at the beginning:

“Rakan. These circuits… They’re the same as mine.”

ASDFGHJKLLJJGFCJFUFUFYDTVJVFD !!! TAT IM DYIN

Also… HAKUBIIIIIIIIIIII and ZAKUROOOO! 😀 😀 😀

So much went down in this book. Easily one of my favourites thus far in the series. I think it also had my favourite “Extra (Story)” which — honest to goodness — I don’t know how I didn’t catch this reveal in the first place. @_____@

Because OMFG KURO FLSNAKFNDLKANDKGNADLNGKAL HOW DID I NOT REALIZE THAT THING WITH HER NAME. HOOOOWWWWWWWWWWW?!???????

SPOILER (HIGHLIGHT TO SEE):

KURO = (ZA)KURO??? Poor babies didn’t realize what was going on until they nearly killed everybody, Hakubi in particular. TAT

sherlockicantfallsover

*EHEM*

Always with my cryptic answers, hur hur~~ :3

Not to mention, pretty much everything that’s been happening to Narushige is breaking my heart. BREAKING IT I SAY! They need to get him back ASAP. This puppet-ing thing is starting to scare me, too. o__o

Any warnings you wish to make for your readers?

None that I could think of.

Does it count towards any reading challenges?

As per usual, so many xD

Would you recommend this book?

kidding

Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, and— oh. Did I mention, YES?!

 

Reviewed by AMS (amomentsilence)

Publisher: Tosuisha
Publication Date: September 2010
Format: electronic, scans
Pages: 164
Genre & Themes: M/M Romance, War,
Love, Twins, Trust, Science Fiction,
Fantasy, Isolation Issues, Psi Abilities,
Alternative Worlds, Telekinetic Powers,
Survivors, Betrayal, Telepathy, Puppets,
Dying World, Plants, Nature, Environment,
Genetically Engineered People & Creatures,
Family, Friendship, Manga, Shounen Ai,
Slashy, Lost Memories
Age: OT / Young Adult
Reviewer: AMS (amomentsilence)
Source: Scanlations by Amato Empire
Challenge:   2015 Good Reads Reading Challenge (30),
52 Books in 52 WeeksEthereal 2015,
You Read How Many Books?105 Reading Challenge
2015 LGBT Reading ChallengeRead A Million Pages,
2015 Graphic Novel and Comic Reading Challenge,
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[Book Review] Re-creation by Dusk Peterson

Re-creation

(Part of The Three Lands universe)

Dusk Peterson

What rating would you give it?
4.5 of 5 Stars

Give us a summary.

(Taken from GoodReads)
“He could not leave this room without his father’s permission. And he could not imagine going to his father and saying, ‘Please let me go gather moss so that my slave can have a proper New Year for once.'”

What can you give a slave who, by law, can own nothing? That is the question faced by Peter, the teenage heir to the throne of an empire. Despite his father’s desire that the imperial heir maintain a formal distance from servants, Peter finds himself drawn in friendship to the younger boy who serves as his slave.

But a shocking revelation on the eve of the New Year forces Peter to confront his own motives for keeping the slave close by. And that in turn will help him understand the deeper meaning of the gift-giving festival.

This coming-of-age novelette on gender and sexual identity is a holiday tale that can be read on its own or as a side story in The Three Lands, a fantasy series on friendship, romance, and betrayal in times of war and peace. The series is inspired by conflicts between nations during the Roman Empire and the Dark Ages.

What did you think of the book?

Huh.

This is yet another unexpectedly awesome read by Dusk Peterson. I think, moreso than the themes he likes to write about, it’s the way in which he tells stories, the characters, the… the real meat of the message being told that I like—that I LOVE.

I found this particular story very… endearing. Most probably because the characters were so young and yet so “wise beyond their years;” in particular Andrew, who most assuredly grew up far too soon during his harsh time as a slave. I found this a very thoughtful and critical piece, something that can easily be turned into a prequel or starter for a series.

If there are more books being made (or have already been made) I would very much want to read them.

NOW.

I am unabashedly curious as to where their complex relationship will take them, and furthermore to the reform and possible deconstruction of unjust and cruel societal hierarchies, magistrates, and laws that could occur once Peter (the other boy) becomes the new Chara.

Or might not.

One thing I would like to make very clear… is that this book is in no way considered M/M romance, but more M/M friendship. I don’t know if in the rest of the series (ya know, when they’re actually older) if they ever become more than “just friends,” but even if they do not… the relationship between the two is truly enthralling to watch unfold.

I think that in today’s more – ehem –”accepting” society, far too many people are far too quick to jump to the conclusion that just because the story revolves around two guys who are close, that they must be banging each other. This story could certainly disprove this belief, yet show that a friendship story is just as captivating and endearing as any M/M romance.

Any warnings you wish to make for your readers?

I get the impression that if there are other stories in this universe, those might be a bit graphic and violent… but this story was without anything too remarkably disturbing. At least in graphic detail, at any rate.

Is it available to read for free? Where can I purchase it?

It’s actually a free ebook, so you can download it from any of these sources here:

Gumroad | AR | Smashwords | Amazon Kindle

Does it count towards any reading challenges?

Yup! A whole bunch. xD

Would you recommend this book?

anigif_enhanced-buzz-21297-1366320393-0

I’d think so. Even to those unfamilar with the rest of the series. I mean, I really enjoyed it, and I didn’t have the slightest idea it was part of a series. The story works well as a stand-alone, and I think the story behind these two young boys would definitely make the reader want to pick up the rest of the series to read what happens to them as they get older (and what already happened to them to lead them to the point where they meet in Re-creation).

Reviewed by AMS (amomentsilence)

Publisher: Love in Dark Settings Press
Publication Date: December 2013
Format: ebook
Pages: est. 58
Genre / Themes: Romance, Gender
Study, QUILTBAG / LGBTQUI, Coming
of Age, Historical Fiction, Sex, Nudity,
Friendship (Male Friendship), Gender & Sexual
Identity & Study, Fantasy, Betrayal, War,
Peace, Warring Nations, Holiday Short,
Holiday Celebration, Master And Slave (non-
sexual), Social Injustice, Social Hierarchy,
POC (Person/People of Color)
Age: Young Adult (I think…)
Reviewer: AMS (amomentsilence)
Source: Index From Author’s Website
Challenge2015 Good Reads Reading Challenge (18),
52 Books in 52 WeeksYou Read How Many Books?,
2015 New To You Reading Challenge,
Read A Million Pages105 Reading Challenge,
Readathon Day 2015, 2015 LGBT Reading Challenge,

[Book Review] Mercy’s Prisoner

mercysprisoner6x9Mercy’s Prisoner

(Life Prison, Volume 1)

Dusk Peterson

What rating would you give it?
4.5 of 5 Stars

Where can you buy or borrow the book?

[Amazon] [Gumroad] [All Romance]
[Smashwords]

Borrow the ebook: [Scribd]

 

Give us a summary.
(Provided by Author)

“‘You have committed a vile and savage act, one that any other nation would punish with death. Our punishment, on the other hand, will only be to give you what you want. You have sought to live in a world without boundaries of civilization, and such a world shall henceforth be your dwelling place.'”

A cold-hearted murderer. A vicious abuser. A young man hiding a shameful secret. A bewildered immigrant. A pure-minded spy.

All of these men have found their appointed places at Mercy Life Prison, where it is easy to tell who your enemies are. But a new visitor to Mercy is about to challenge decades-old customs. Now these men’s worst enemies may be hiding behind masks… and so may their closest allies.

A runner-up in the Rainbow Awards 2014, the book bundle “Mercy’s Prisoner” can be read on its own or as the first volume in the Life Prison series. Friendship, desire between men, and the costs of corruption and integrity are examined in this multicultural speculative fiction series, which is inspired by prison life at the end of the nineteenth century.

What did you think of the book?

Alright. So, I may have gotten a little over-excited reading this book.

I'm_Just_Sayin_Misha

Also, just FYI, this volume is a collection of five novellas/short stories all taking place with the Life Prisoner series. A second volume (possibly also a collection) is said to be published in the summer. Do not confuse this title with the novella Life Prison (as it is just first story/novella in this collection).

I was SO unsure of it originally… hoping beyond hope that it would blow my socks off, or at least not be a complete flop. I even had hopes of another Under Grand Hotel situation going on –which it wasn’t, by the way, but still. No UGH, but I might have just gotten something even better. (Or at least on par.)

This historical speculative fiction novel easily captures the minds of any reader, even those who might not think this to be “their thing,” with its dark setting and even darker themes. But there is a point to all this seemingly unnecessary suffering and pain. Reformation is at hand and with it comes a serious call to action, to the re-examination one’s own sense of morality and of right and wrong. Believe you-me, this book makes you THINK – about topics of discussion most would prefer never to think about or take into account. To consider the circumstances of those everyone prefers to not even think of. To ponder the basic human rights denied to those who violate others’ rights with their actions and deeds.

To consider that a murderer is also a human being too… and does that not mean they, too, deserve to be treated as such with basic human rights?

There’s a lot of philosophy and activism going on in here, a lot of moral discussion that doesn’t really have easy answers. I can’t say I believe prisoners – especially those that have done truly horrible things for selfish or unthinkable reasons – should be allowed to go free or be treated kindly, but I do believe they have the right to be treated with some decency and the basic human rights that no one should be denied.

This book makes you think about the hard questions no one wants to ask or bring to light in discussion, and I AB-SO-LUTELY LOVE IT.

I cannot wait to read the next book in the series!

Any warnings you wish to make for your readers?

The stories are dark. I think I explained that already, so expect DARK THINGS. XD Other than that, the third of the five stories in the volume showcases some BDSM. It’s not too intense, as it is more of master/slave story than anything else. Other things that occur either in passing (not detailed) or minorly: non-con, rape, blood, some torture, lots of punishment, sickness & illness, and otherwise horrible living conditions.

Does it count towards any reading challenges?

Yep! A whole bunch~

Would you recommend this book?

ReadHunny

Hell YEAH! Though, of course, I would absolutely warn whoever I recommend it to about just how dark and violent this book can be at times. It’s not alarmingly graphic, detailing every vicious act… but it IS still disarming and poignant in a way that might leave the reader who is more inclined to the visually graphic quite disturbed, so it might be best to read it, knowing full well how disturbing some imaginary within can be.

Reviewed by AMS (amomentsilence)

Publisher: Love in Dark Settings Press
Publication Date: August 2014, reissue December 2014
Format: eBook, ARC
Pages: 229
Genre: Historical Speculative Fiction,
Crime Fiction, M/M “Romance,”
Prison / Prison Life, BDSM, Master/Slave,
Reformation, Penal Code, Love Mates,
Punishment, Whipping, Non-con, Torture,
Consumption, Fair Treatment, QUILTBAG
/ LGBTQUIA, Friendship, Corruption,
Morality, Integrity, Nineteenth Century Fiction
Age: Adult
Reviewer: AMS (amomentsilence)
Source: Provided by Author in exchange for an honest review
Award(s): Runner-up, Gay Fantasy category, in the Rainbow
Awards 2014. Honorable Mention in the Rainbow Awards 2014.
Challenge2015 Good Reads Reading Challenge (9),
52 Books in 52 WeeksYou Read How Many Books?,
2015 LGBT Reading Challenge, Read A Million Pages,
105 Reading ChallengeNew To You