Tag Archives: Aliens

Dragon Dance by Angela Knight

Overview
Image result for beyond the dark angela knight book cover

Title: Dragon Dance
Author: Angela Knight
In: Beyond the Dark (Lora Leigh, Angela Knight, Emma Holly & Diane Whiteside)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Paranormal romance, Science fiction
Dates read: 4th May 2021
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: Jove
Year: 2007
5th sentence, 74th page: No, I’ll just… I’ll just…

Synopsis

Angela Knight does it… in the psychic realm of a woman attuned to the touch of strangers – and the powerful temptations of a seductive and mysterious protector.

Thoughts

I really, really loved this concept – that random people get powers and are called hypers. And that the source of these powers is aliens… I love how Knight’s novellas are able to take a concept that you kind of expect… and change it into a really unique SciFi spin!

Arial and Josiah are a great couple. I thought that they were seriously cute from the very beginning. And I definitely was routing for them from the very beginning. I also love the way that Josiah is trying to keep celibate (and the reasons for why). And how Arial just steadily and happily makes him give it all up… it’s a fun storyline. Or at least, my happy little brain finds it fun.

But, mostly I love how these characters with superpowers have managed to find a way to coexist and find their happily ever afters. I can completely imagine Arial and Josiah and Psych running off into the future fighting more bad guys and making more sense of the incredibly unique world that Knight has managed to create.

<- Beyond the DarkCaught by the Tides ->

Image source: Amazon

Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Overview
Obsidian (Lux, #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Obsidian
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: Lux #1
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Romance, Science fiction, Young adult
Dates read: 28th July – 17th September 2020
Pace: Medium
Format: Novel
Publisher: Hodder
Year: 2011
5th sentence, 74th page: It wasn’t usually the safest way to travel.

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Synopsis

The unputdownable first novel in the Lux series. Daemon Black will set pulses racing…

There’s an alien next door. And with his looming height and eerie green eyes, he’s hot… until he opens his mouth. He’s infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, he marks me. Turns out he has a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal his abilities and the only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to him until my alien mojo fades. If I don’t kill him first, that is.

When Katy moves to West Virginia right before her senior year, she’s anticipating a whole lot of boring. The last thing on her mind is getting involved with her sexy, exasperating neighbour – and then finding out he’s guarding a mind-blowing secret…

Thoughts

This was a seriously good novel. It took me a little while to read, but mostly because I kept getting distracted by other, shinier books. It was still wonderful and fun. This was a great teenage / young adult book with great world building and a lead female who I could really relate to. Definitely an enjoyable adventure. And, now that I’ve finished it… I can’t wait to read the next one and journey back into Armentrout’s world of the Lux.

This had a pretty typical level of the teen angst that I’m used to looking for in a young adult novel. But it was a little less painful than some of the other young adult books I’ve read – the angst was nicely balanced by the gumption and drive of Kat. I actually really enjoyed the angst that was a part of this story – it wasn’t over the top and painful, and honestly, if I had to deal with Daemon’s attitude like Kat does… I’d be pretty angsty and irritable myself.

I absolutely love the world building that Armentrout does in this series. I enjoyed the prequel Shadows, and that had a nice little introduction into this series. But it didn’t give me a full background into the world of the Lux. This novel most definitely did that. Although, I’m glad I know a little more about Dawson from Shadows. It’s a great world building that I can’t wait to sink my metaphorical teeth into… I just need to save up some money before I buy the next book is all…

Kat and Daemon definitely don’t have a cutesy, sweet relationship. Which I most definitely love. I get a bit fed up with relationships in books (both young adult and adult) which focus on the cutesy, love at first sight angle. That just doesn’t feel overly realistic to me. Instead, Daemon and Kat are constantly niggling at one another and making things somewhat difficult for each other. It’s a lot more similar to the healthy relationships that I see in my life (even if this one isn’t totally healthy).

I absolutely can’t wait to read Oblivion – I’m fascinated to see what all of the moments in Obsidian looked like through Daemon’s eyes. There are some wonderful and fun hints at the end of Obsidian, but I look forward to getting even more insight.

<- ShadowsOblivion ->

Image source: Goodreads

One Small Step… by Amie Kaufman

Overview
Image result for begin, end, begin book cover

Title: One Small Step…
Author: Amie Kaufman
In: Begin, End, Begin (Danielle Binks)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Australian authors, LGBTQI, Science fiction, Young adult
Dates read: 30th June 2020
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Year: 2017
5th sentence, 74th page: Only a few people have ever returned from Mars to Earth, but it’s possible, just very expensive.

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Synopsis

She’s the first born Martian. And rightly famous for it. But what if what she wants isn’t the life that has been mapped out for her? How can she figure out how to take that first, small step into her own future?

Thoughts

This was such an amazingly cute, engaging and brilliant short story. It also perfectly encompassed the theme of “beginning” which is featured in the Begin, End, Begin collection. After all, it is about a girl on the precipice of adulthood, trying to decide what she wants to do with her life and her future. The fact that she was the first person born on Mars and is somewhat of a celebrity just helps to add to the potency of the storyline.

There are two coming-of-age battles that are fought and dwelt upon beautifully in this short story. The first is the decision about whether or not to go to college on earth. What one wants to actually do with their lives in the future. And, ultimately, how much of this decision is based upon your own needs, and how much is based upon the desires of those who love you. I know that it was a battle that I constantly had to fight when I was trying to make decisions about my future.

Secondly, there is the little fact that the lead narrator is actually LGBTQI+. Her constant battle with not knowing how to reveal this fact and desire to do so… it’s kind of precipice-feeling. And so, when she finally makes a decision about her life at the end, you are just so damn happy. It really made my heart swell two more sizes.

This is a fantastic, perfect coming-of-age story that takes you to that precipice of the future. That will either make you think of your own potential future, or those moments like this that feel so important and all powerful… just ready for you too to jump of that cliff and start your own reality.

<- Begin, End, BeginI Can See The Ending ->

Image source: Harper Collins Australia

The Old Slow Man and His Gold Gun From Space by Ben H. Winters

Overview
Image result for dead man's hand book cover

Title: The Old Slow Man and His Gold Gun From Space
Author: Ben H. Winters
In: Dead Man’s Hand (John Joseph Adams)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Urban fantasy, Westerns
Dates read: 13th June 2020
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: Titan Books
Year: 2014
5th sentence, 74th page: The old man snorted.

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Synopsis

Two men are hunting for gold. But a surprise visit from an alien changes everything. Him and his Gold Gun from Space.

Thoughts

When I think about westerns, this is the kind of story that I imagine. Alright, there’s an alien and whatnot. But the backstabbing, guns and gold rush… that’s honestly what I picture when I think about a western. Not convoluted sentences and hard-to-understand story lines. But a story in which there are the rough and tumble cowboys in a lawless world.

I have this weird image of a gold rush in my head. A completely lawless world filled with men in cowboy hats. And a lack of rules. And tiny, dirty little towns that are completely out of the way. It might be a somewhat ridiculous and unrealistic image. But it is one that I really enjoy and like. This story fed into that image of a realm in which everyone is out for themselves. Which is probably why I enjoyed it so much.

One of my favourite parts of this story is that from fairly on, they are told not to pull the trigger. So, of course. You want someone to pull the trigger. Desperately want someone to pull the trigger. Which of course, someone does. Ad then that leads to all kinds of happy thoughts and had me laughing a little. It wasn’t a good result, but I’m twisted, so I loved that this was how the story ends… with the trigger being pulled.

<- The Red-Headed DeadHellfire on the High Frontier ->

Image source: Amazon

Alien Sex edited by Ellen Datlow

Overview
Image result for alien sex book cover

Title: Alien Sex
Author: Ellen Datlow, Leigh Kennedy, Rick Wilber, Harlan Ellison, Scott Baker, Larry Niven, K.W. Jeter, Philip Jose Farmer, Lisa Tuttle, Bruce McAllister, Edward Bryant, Pat Cadigan, Geoff Ryman, Connie Willis, Richard Christian Matheson, Lewis Shiner, Roberta Lannes, James Tiptree, Jr., Michaela Roessner & Pat Murphy
In: Alien Sex (Ellen Datlow)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Science fiction, Short story collections
Dates read: 27th August – 29th December 2019
Pace: Slow
Format: Short story
Publisher: ROC
Year: 1990
5th sentence, 74th page: The front row of pews was reserved for the faculty.

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Synopsis

In these 19 evocative pieces of short fiction, best-selling and award-winning writers tackle such intriguing issues as sex by telepathy, the pick-up scene on other planets, and making love with Superman. Thought-provoking, often shocking, always entertaining, Alien Sex daringly explores those barriers between men and women that can make them seem so “alien” to one another. Probing the current and future state, shape, and complex problems of the human male/female relationship, this fantastic collection will make you think about sex in a whole new way.

Thoughts

This is the single most uncomfortable thing I’ve ever read. Like wow uncomfortable. And not in bits and pieces. But pretty much every single story in this was uncomfortable. Not that that’s bad. But it’s very hard to read a book quickly when you know that things aren’t going to be, well, pleasant. Which makes it incredibly WOW to read. I suggest this to everyone who loves their science fiction.

This collection seriously makes you think about the world around you and how we perceive it. More importantly, it repeatedly makes you question sex, our approaches to sexuality and even how we deal with the opposite gender. And sometimes even questions of gender. By using these insane, far out storylines, it makes you seriously consider this aspect of our lives.

Sex is really weird. I don’t know that anyone can argue that it isn’t. Using science fiction and aliens just helps to highlight that fact. And kind of act as enlightenment for a number of my own practices and beliefs. Definitely an interesting collection…

<- The Marker ReviewHer Furry Face ->
Image source: Amazon

Picture Planes by Michaela Roessner

Overview
Image result for alien sex book cover

Title: Picture Planes
Author: Michaela Roessner
In: Alien Sex (Ellen Datlow)
Rating Out of 5: 3 (On the fence about this one)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Lust, Poetry
Dates read: 29th December 2019
Pace: Slow
Format: Poem
Publisher: ROC
Year: 1990
5th sentence, 74th page: Where two steams of blood

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Synopsis

A poem about sex, lust and the loss of innocence.

Thoughts

I can spend hours staring at one poem, pulling apart each nuance and meaning. It’s something I’m far more likely to do than when there is prose around. This poem made me so uncomfortable that I didn’t do that this time. After all, it’s in the Alien Sex collection, so it’s not going to be a comfortable story.

When I started reading this poem, I thought it was a little more innocent. About sex, sexuality and that loss of innocence that goes along with it.

It’s not.

It’s more about possession and rape and horrible aspects of sexuality. Or at least, that’s what I got out of it.

 <- And I Awoke and Found Me Here on the Cold Hill’s Side ReviewLove and Sex Among the Invertebrates Review ->
Image source: Amazon

And I Awoke and Found Me Here on the Cold Hill’s Side by James Tiptree, Jr.

Overview
Image result for alien sex book cover

Title: And I Awoke and Found Me Here on the Cold Hill’s Side
Author: James Tiptree, Jr.
In: Alien Sex (Ellen Datlow)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Lust
Dates read: 29th December 2019
Pace: Slow
Format: Short story
Publisher: ROC
Year: 1971
5th sentence, 74th page: I turned my holocam to show its big World Media insigne and started my bit about What It Meant to the People Back Home who were paying for it all.

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Synopsis

We always want what we can’t have. But what if what we want spells the end of our species?

Thoughts

I swear it’s the human condition – we always want what we just can’t have. It seems to be the number one thing that leads people to make some incredibly stupid decisions. It also seems to be the thing to that drives people to become greater versions of themselves. A double-edged knife. One that is a great theme to follow throughout this story. And was probably way too relatable at this point in my life.

In the case of this story, what humans desire is aliens. Aliens they actually can’t have sex with. Ones that they desire so severely that they are spelling the end of their species. It’s totally weird. Definitely gross. And made me think about when you want to follow your impulses. Sometimes it’s better to think through what you actually want.

This story is, like many others in the Alien Sex collection, weird and dark. It wasn’t as uncomfortable as the rest of the stories and nowhere near as graphic. But it still made me stop and think.

 <- Saving the World at the New Moon Motel ReviewPicture Planes Review ->
Image source: Amazon

Saving the World at the New Moon Motel by Roberta Lannes

Overview
Image result for alien sex book cover

Title: Saving the World at the New Moon Motel
Author: Roberta Lannes
In: Alien Sex (Ellen Datlow)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Humour, Lust
Dates read: 19th December 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: ROC
Year: 1990
5th sentence, 74th page: He ain’t gonna come, Terri.

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Synopsis

Terri just wants a little bit of revenge after her Old Man walked out on her. So she finds an alien in a little diner. It’s certainly an experience to last a lifetime.

Thoughts

The introduction to this short story highlights that this is one of the authors lighter pieces. However, since this whole collection has been a little twisted and not what I would consider light… I was a little unsure as to whether this would be true. It turns out that this is quite a light-hearted and fun story about alien sex. One that had me laughing throughout quite merrily.

I’m pretty good at imagining images for what I’m reading… I struggled to picture the penises (or is it peni?) in this story. There was just something a little unimaginable about this. It might just be my very (happily) narrow view of the world and people’s bodies. But, I think that the close alignment to a normal body, just with a few extra appendages is what mad it so difficult to imagine.

Unlike literally every single other short story in the Alien Sex collection, this one was fun, light and an easy read. It didn’t leave me feeling uncomfortable when I turned the final page. Rather, I was just smiling and feeling highly amused by the occurrences and characters in this story.

 <- Scales ReviewAnd I Awoke and Found Me Here on the Cold Hill’s Side Review ->
Image source: Amazon

Beauty by Tanith Lee

Overview
Image result for red as blood tanith lee book cover

Title: Beauty
Author: Tanith Lee
In: Red as Blood (Tanith Lee)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Aliens, Fairy tales, Retellings, Science fiction
Dates read: 17th December 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: Wildside
Year: 1983
5th sentence, 74th page: There were no words at all.

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Synopsis

When the rose arrives, the family must give up one of their own. When her time comes, she finds that maybe this new home with an alien being could be exactly what she was missing in her life. A beautiful, science fiction retelling of Beauty and the Beast.

Thoughts

I’ve been enjoying Beauty and the Beast retellings lately. I have never read one which is this intense though. And a SciFi version to boot. And it was just a short story! Beauty is brilliant, fun and gives an entirely new take on an old classic. Unlike most short stories that I fall this in love with though, I actually was happy with the length. I didn’t feel like it had to be expanded and added to. I didn’t think that it actually needed to be longer, it was kind of perfect all on its own.

I love that the “beast” in this story is an alien. Part of a race that is giving, helpful and constantly providing for humanity. But, the cost is that eventually some families have to give up their own child. There is so much mystery to this practice that you spend most of the tale just wondering why this is the case. And when the face of the beast is finally revealed to the young woman, what you believe is entirely wrong. It’s a great mislead and just makes it all that much more impossible to put the story down. This might be why I was happy for it to be short… I don’t know if I could sustain that kind of intensity.

As much as I’ve tried to convey the pure amazingness of this story, I don’t actually think I have the right words. Anywhere. In anyway, shape or form. Which is completely new for me. There is just something about this retelling that left me feeling in awe as the final page was closed. Happy, in awe and just fascinated.

 <- Black as Ink ReviewThe Waters of Sorrow Review ->
Image source: Amazon

Omnisexual by Geoff Ryman

Overview
Image result for alien sex book cover

Title: Omnisexual
Author: Geoff Ryman
In: Alien Sex (Ellen Datlow)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: AliensEroticaScience fiction
Dates read: 30th November 2019
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: ROC
Year: 1990
5th sentence, 74th page: Lying on his back, he could see the stars.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

An incredibly sexual short story filled with intense innuendos and aliens.

Thoughts

I felt so very, very confused while I was reading this. So I figured that it might be a good idea to just share with you the dot points that I wrote as I was reading this. I’m not even sure I can make sense of what I was writing… I’m not sure I made sense of what I was reading… but it was fun regardless!

  • Not sure if this is about sex or birth. Seems gross either way.
  • SHE is giving birth to hummingbirds. And there was something about doves.
  • HE is now pregnant (???)
  • Basically, this story is fucked and I’m only on page 2.
  • Every single sentence in this is super, super, intensely sexual. Like wow.
  • The sexuality is ACTUALLY making me uncomfortable.
  • The child is being rode (or is it ridden?)
  • Alright, I’m THINKING that this short story is about immortality that we achieve in the next generation. I’m gonna think of it like that… this was WAY too weird.
 <- Roadside Rescue ReviewAll My Darling Daughters Review ->
Image source: Amazon