Okay, here's the latest from the Writer's Desk:
Stargate Atlantis: Halcyon ***
When it comes to the people of the alien world Halcyon, might makes right in every situation. But the government is corrupted and falling apart. Colonel Sheppard is given the green light from Atlantis to run negotiations on his own--but dismantling the planet's monarchy system isn't really what anyone had in mind. To add to the 'weirdness,' on Halcyon, the Wraith aren't feared--they're hunted.
Stargate Atlantis: Casualties of War ****
Colonel Sheppard and his team head to a new world, populated by two peoples: the Nistra, and the Falnori, who are fighting over the Stargate and the mines. Dr. Weir offers to help them negotiate a treaty, but things aren't running very smoothly--and to add to an already-rough day, the Great Hall has been raided--again. Both people suspect each other, but Sheppard and the team have other ideas.
Stargate Atlantis: Blood Ties ***
Sheppard and the team head to the SGC back on Earth for an emergency meeting: the possibility of a Wraith on Earth. Sheppard teams up with FBI agent Rebecca Larance, and SG-1's Dr. Daniel Jackson, and the three of them head to war-torn Iraq to check out a few leads, which lead them to startling and disturbing discoveries.
Stargate Atlantis: Reliquary ***
Major John Sheppard & co. head to a lab--possibly Ancient (gasp!)--and discover a possible Ancient who may be able to help them on Atlantis. But before they leave, strange things begin to happen, and Sheppard's people begin to attack each other. Leaving Sheppard and McKay to rot in the lab, the evil not-so-Ancient takes the brainwashed Lanteans and their 'jumper (puddlejumper, a ship) back to Atlantis. Sheppard and McKay have to get back to Atlantis and rescue the city--preferably before Sheppard drops dead of a DNA-mutating virus Dr. Evil gave him.
Outcast by Michelle Paver ****
[BOOK 4 OF THE 'WOLF BROTHER'/CHRONICLES OF ANCIENT DARKNESS SERIES]
Torak's Soul Eater mark is discovered and he is cast out of Raven Clan, made an outcast and hunted by all the clans. But he has a more pressing problem: the Viper Mage is out to get him and the Fire Opal, and he needs to stop her...at all costs.
Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder ***
Yelena, convicted [and guilty, mind you] of 1st degree murder, is given a choice: execution, or a position as the Commander's food taster in a land of deceit ad treason. She chooses food taster [no, really?!] and is trained by Valek, the Commander's top assassin. Of course, there just has to be romance [of all the genres, why?] but all in all, a good book. Lots of plotting and conspiracy. Warning, though; Yelena's memories and flashbacks are violent/somewhat disturbing.
Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder **
Not as compelling as Poison Study. Yelena goes to Sitia, the land of her birth, to meet her family for the first time and to learn magic. But as she learns, everything is put in danger, and she must be careful not to slip up--or she, and countless others, will lose their lives and be snuffed. (See? Aren't my sumeries fun? I could get a job like this...)
Mangler of Malibu Canyon by Jennifer Colt ***
Twin sisters and PI's Kerry and Terry McAfee are at it again. Their freakish Aunt Reba calls them to inform them that she's found a decapitated body in her Turkish rug, and when the girls show up--along with the police--so does Cousin Robert...with the head belonging to the body and no knowledge of what happened. Language, and a sort-of romance scene at the end.