Robert Runté Recommends Playground of Lost Toys

PlaygroundLostToys

Playground of Lost Toys
edited by Ursula Pflug and Colleen Anderson

Genre: Speculative Fiction

Quick description:
An anthology of 22 original short stories by a cross section of Canada’s top sf, fantasy and horror writers examines the role that that one special toy plays in our childhoods and/or the impact that has on our adult selves.

Ursula Pflug

Ursula Pflug

Why I recommend this book:
This wasn’t an anthology I thought I’d be interested in, but I really respect the editors, so I ultimately got involved. And then, at a prelaunch party I heard some of the writers read from the anthology and it blew me away! So not the sentimental stories about lost dolls I had half expected. Instead, an incredible array of powerful writing that ranged from funny to moving to chilling.

Colleen Anderson

Colleen Anderson

I may never get some of the imagery out of my head! When I finally got my copy I was struck by how the editors had been able to assemble an indispensable collection of some of the best writing this country has to offer. The thoughtful introductions by the editors, and the afterword by Derek Newman-Stiles, are themselves worth the price of admission. Table of contents is available at the website. Ursula Pflug has been previously featured on Reading Recommendations.

Links for people to buy the book:
Amazon
Chapters/Indigo

runte2 Guest reviewer’s latest title or project:
My latest sale was the short story “The Age of Miracles” to the Strangers Among Us anthology, edited by Lucas Law and Susan Forest, due out in August 2016. The anthology is on the theme of, and a benefit for, mental health. (Robert Runté is a contributor to this anthology and has also been previously featured on Reading Recommendations.)

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Katrina Mountfort

new photoKatrina Mountfort

What is your latest release and what genre is it? Forbidden Alliance is YA speculative fiction. It’s the second book in the Blueprint Trilogy, and since your readers may not have heard of the trilogy, I’ll introduce the first novel, Future Perfect.

Quick description: The Blueprint Trilogy tells of a dystopian future in which UK citizens live comfortable lives in Citidomes where looks are everything, the standard of beauty is tall, thin and androgynous, but personal relationships are forbidden. When a young man and woman become attracted to each other and question their society, they discover a new life outside the Citidomes but struggle to escape their past.

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Brief biography:
Katrina dreamed of being a novelist from childhood but didn’t start writing until she was forty, when the death of a close friend made her realise that she couldn’t put off her dreams forever. Katrina lives in Saffron Walden, England, where she works from home as a freelance medical writer. She spends her free time walking her two black Labradors, listening to music and travelling as often as possible.

Links to buy Katrina’s book:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
iTunes
KOBO
The paperback is also available directly from the publisher, Elsewhen Press.

Katrina’s promo links:
Website
Blog
Facebook
Twitter

What are you working on now?
I’ve always been fascinated by the importance of nurture versus nature and am currently working on the story of a native American girl with miracle healing powers, raised by strangers who knew nothing of her abilities.

Katrina’s reading recommendation:
The best book I’ve read this year is House of York by Terry Tyler, a contemporary family drama with parallels to events in the era of the Wars of the Roses. I’ve read several of this author’s other novels and would recommend them all.

Sue Perry

sueperrySue Perry

What is your latest release and what genre is it? Nica of Los Angeles, a speculative detective novel with dystopian and paranormal elements. This is the first of at least four novels in the FRAMES series.

Quick description: When rookie private eye Nica takes on a mysterious case, she enters a world of multiple dimensions called Frames, where buildings and lawn chairs can be sentient, a stray cat has great powers, books can be killers, and clouds can be spies. At home, Nica tackles missing person cases, while in the larger reality of the Frames she is swept into an escalating battle with stakes that could not be higher.

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Brief biography:
Sue Perry is a seasoned yet new writer who published one novel then went off and did other things. She enjoyed (then stopped enjoying) a variety of careers, from television producer to college professor to disaster scientist, and recently resumed writing novels. She now has four, as varied as her interests. Sue’s books span many genres and perspectives but share key features. They all have smartass dialog, strong female characters, and stories that unfold like mysteries. There will always be a cat, and there will usually be a musician. Although she loves writing – and is proud to be a writer – if Sue could be anything, she would be a musician. She missed her chance at the dawn of punk, when musical ability was optional.

Links to buy Sue’s book:
Smashwords – eBook
Amazon – eBook and paperback
Barnes & Noble – paperback and Nook
iTunes – eBook

Sue’s promo links:
Website
Twitter
Facebook

What are you working on now?
FRAMES, Book 2, Nica of XXX. (location currently embargoed)

Sue’s reading recommendation:
Selected Letters of Raymond Chandler edited by Frank MacShane
The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud (re-read)

’Nathan Burgoine

Nathan Burgoine photo’Nathan Burgoine

What is your latest release and what genre is it? My latest release is Light, and it’s a gay contemporary spec-fic.

Quick description: Kieran Quinn is a bit telepathic, a little psychokinetic, and very gay—three things that have gotten him through life perfectly well so far—but when self-styled prophet Wyatt Jackson arrives during Pride Week, things take a violent turn.

And best of luck, ‘Nathan, as Light has been nominated in the Lambda Awards!! Here’s the news about that in a blog post.

Kieran’s powers are somewhat underwhelming but do have a habit of refracting light into spectacular rainbows for him to hide behind. Even so, it’s not long before Kieran is struggling to maintain his own anonymity while battling wits with a handsome cop, getting some flirting in with a hunky leather man, saving some drag queens, and escaping the worst blind date in history. It’s enough to make a fledgling hero want to give up before he even begins.

One thing’s for sure: saving the day has never been so fabulous.

Light 300 DPI

Brief biography:
’Nathan Burgoine grew up a reader and studied literature in university while making a living as a bookseller—a job he still does, and still loves. He has dozens of short stories published, and one novel, Light.

A cat lover, ‘Nathan managed to fall in love and marry Daniel, who is a confirmed dog person. They recently adopted a husky. They live in Ottawa, Canada, where socialized health care and gay marriage have yet to cause the sky to cave in.

Links to buy ’Nathan’s book:
Bold Strokes Books (Publisher, e-book and trade)
Indiebound (Indiebound, trade)
Kobo – ebook
Amazon – eBook and paperback

’Nathan’s promo links:
Author website/blog
Facebook
Twitter

What are you working on now?
I just finished a novella – my first novella – for a project Jerry L. Wheeler is working on that I’m very excited about. It’s called In Memoriam and it’s just starting its journey in the pipeline for publication. I’m also trying to get back to the world of short stories again, now that Light is out and In Memoriam is done. I love short fiction, and it feels like coming home.

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’Nathan’s reading recommendation:
Jeff Mann’s Cub is a brilliant new YA title that I really hope ends up getting the praise and attention it deserves. The vast majority of small-town gay young adult tales generally involve the city as the goal. In Cub, you don’t find the typical gay kid desperate to escape the farm for the bright lights of the city. Instead, you meet Travis: someone not at all at odds with his rural upbringing, a poet and a passionate young man who isn’t like any youth I’ve read in gay young adult literature before.

’Nathan Burgoine also contributed to the anthology, a family by any other name, published earlier this spring. Both Bruce Gillespie, editor of the book, and Betty Jane Hegerat, another contributor, were previously promoted on Reading Recommendations!