Announcing the June Book Cover of the Month!

Announcing the June Book Cover of the Month!

Hello everyone,

We’ve just wrapped up another month. This month was comparatively slow, but things got a bit better late in the game.

We had 2,560 votes this month.

It was close for a few days, but then the winner had a ten-voter surge and never looked back.

The June Book Cover of the Month is…



Alphas and Airships by Melanie Karsak! If you’re curious about how I felt about the book, check out the Facebook post that I posted when this book first landed on the bracket, here.

Let’s look at the stats!

Karsak received 145 total votes.

A Guiding Light by Susan Copperfield came in second, so Copperfield becomes the first author this year to get two second chances. We only saw that happen twice all of last year.

But for now, let’s look at this month’s winner!



With Lionheart as the new alpha, the streets of London are quiet.

But above the realm, mischief is brewing.

While airship pirates are a common plague upon the kingdom, the airship Fenrir proves particularly troublesome–especially on a full moon.

Clemeny must take to the skies before these shape-shifting Vikings kick off a new Ragnarok. Easier said than done now that she’s down one good eye, a partner, and not to mention the fact that she gets motion sick.

On top of that, the new scar across her face makes Clemeny feel like she’ll have better luck intimidating her foes than finding a beau. But Agent Edwin Hunter, recently assigned as head of Clemeny’s division, is proving to be an interesting prospect. Despite her apprehensions, it’s up to Agent Louvel to chase Fenrir across the heavens.

Alphas and Airships
is a retelling of the Red Riding Hood fairy tale set in Melanie Karsak’s bestselling steampunk universe. Alphas and Airships is Book 2 in the Steampunk Red Riding Hood series.


I’ve added Alphas and Airships to my TBR. (For those who are new to the deal, I buy the Book Cover of the Month to read and review in the future. I buy all the winning covers. I’ve already bought MayAprilMarchFebruaryJanuaryDecember’s book.

Here’s Melanie’s Facebook page. Give it a like if you’re curious about her and her work.

I’ll try to find out who did that cover. Truth is interviews are a bit hard to arrange on my end these days.  I’ll try to get back on track, but things are looking a bit busy lately (in a less good way at the moment).

The July Book Cover of the Month is coming along, and that contest will launch Aug. 1.

I will continue to identify and select covers for each day from Amazon’s New Release section for fantasy and science fiction. If you follow and like my Facebook page, you can see what covers will make the bracket.

Thanks for reading


Book Review: For Steam and Country by Jon del Arroz

Book Review: For Steam and Country by Jon del Arroz
This image was taken from for review purposes under Fair Use Doctrine.

First off, before we get to my regular Wednesday review, please let me wish you all a happy Fourth of July. I love my country, which was one of the main reasons I served it for ten years as an active-duty Sailor, and I still serve as a DOD instructor. God bless our country, bless our service members, and may we hold true to the principles under which our great nation was formed.

Spolier Free Summary: For Steam and Country by Jon del Arroz is a story about Zaira’s life is thrown off course when her dead father’s will places her on the deck of the last remaining air-ship in the empire. She’s face with the choice to leave the life she thought she’d have or embrace the life her father led, the same life that took him from her. Her life grows even more difficult when she encounters the Wyranth Empire, the empire behind her father’s death. This was my June Book Cover of the Month winner.

Character:  I’d say this was the strength of this story. There were issues I had with it, but the characters are proactive (for the most part). Zaira does seem to be a pretty standard character for YA novels. She’s the unsure, female on her own fighting to prove she’s tough enough. The trope is more of my problem than the execution of the character. My frustration is that Zaira seems to pretty much go with things.  She does however, start coming to her own in the book, which gives her a pretty decent character arc. Constant reminders of how like her father she is annoyed me as a reader even more than her as a character. I felt like there was a missed opportunity here since her father had been absent for much of her life. Rather than investigate that potential conflict, the book focuses mostly on plot-driven events.

This image of Mr. Arroz was taken from his webiste for review purposes under Fair Use Doctrine. 

Description: Other than the non-stop references to her similarities to her father’s physical traits, the description of this book is, what I feel, good for a steampunk novel like this. As always, I stress I’m not one who loves a lot of detail in description. For steampunk lovers, there might not be enough of those little, minute details the genre loves so much, but I wasn’t bothered at all.  I saw what I needed to, and my imagination took care of the rest.

Thanks for reading,