The past month has brought the release of some great urban fantasy.
Carniepunk. An anthology of short stories that all feature the magical and beglittered, sometimes dark and creepy, setting of a carnival. Includes some bestselling urban fantasy authors like favorites Kevin Hearne, author of the Iron Druid series; Seanan McGuire, author of the InCryptid series; Rachel Caine, author of the Weather Warden books; and Jennifer Estep, author of the Elemental Assassin series.
Affliction by Laurell K. Hamilton. The latest installment in the Anita Blake series is much more focused on Anita and her relationships than recent books. Micah, one of Anita’s lovers, learns that his estranged father has been infected with a zombie disease. As a necromancer/expert on zombies, Anita travels with him, hoping to help. While there are the usual “Who has the bigger gun” contests with local authorities, this book felt less focused on Anita’s physical relationships and more on emotional ties to her lovers, Micah’s family, even her relationship with Edward (still can’t quite believe that Death is getting married!).
Fifth Grave Past the Light by Darynda Jones. In this latest book in the series, Charlie’s used to seeing ghosts; after all, she’s a grim reaper. But not usually dozens at a time and not usually spirits so traumatized that they’re unable to communicate. In her effort to find the serial killer and stop him before any more of his victims haunt her, Charlie has to make a deal with the devil. Or at least his sexy son, Reyes.
Magic Rises by Ilona Andrews. This series is set in a world where magic has returned, bringing with it sorcerers, shifters, and vampires. Former mercenary Kate and her mate, Curran the Beast Lord leave their stronghold in Atlanta for a mission that seems doomed to fail in Europe but the lives of their followers depend on their success. Fast paced action and lots of the snappy dialog between Kate and Curran that fans of the series enjoy.