Saturday, January 2, 2016

Blind Book Challenge 2015 Answers Revealed

The time has finally arrived to reveal the answers to the 2015 Blind Book Challenge. If you still want to try your hand at guessing the titles head over to the blind book challenge post and see how many titles you can identify based on the clues. Tiemen outdid himself this year and I must confess that I only managed to identify three of the books.

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1. Science-Fiction & Fantasy/Nazi X-men/British Warlocks/Well, That Escalated Quickly
Bitter Seeds by Ian Tregillis
It’s 1939. The Nazis have supermen, the British have demons, and one perfectly normal man gets caught in between

Raybould Marsh is a British secret agent in the early days of the Second World War, haunted by something strange he saw on a mission during the Spanish Civil War: a German woman with wires going into her head who looked at him as if she knew him.

When the Nazis start running missions with people who have unnatural abilities—a woman who can turn invisible, a man who can walk through walls, and the woman Marsh saw in Spain who can use her knowledge of the future to twist the present—Marsh is the man who has to face them. He rallies the secret warlocks of Britain to hold the impending invasion at bay. But magic always exacts a price. Eventually, the sacrifice necessary to defeat the enemy will be as terrible as outright loss would be.

2. Young Adult/Waking Up After Dying/Republic of Texas/Worst Newbie Ever Seen
Reboot by Amy Tintera
In this fast-paced dystopian thrill ride, perfect for fans of The Hunger Games, Legend, and Divergent, a seventeen-year-old girl returns from death as a Reboot and is trained as an elite crime-fighting soldier . . . until she is given an order she refuses to obey.

Wren Connolly died five years ago, only to Reboot after 178 minutes. Now she is one of the deadliest Reboots around . . . unlike her newest trainee, Callum 22, who is practically still human. As Wren tries to teach Callum how to be a soldier, his hopeful smile works its way past her defenses. Unfortunately, Callum’s big heart also makes him a liability, and Wren is ordered to eliminate him. To save Callum, Wren will have to risk it all.

3. Science-Fiction/A Tale of Two Sociopaths/Experiment Gone Horribly Wrong/ Ambition, Betrayal and Superpowers
Vicious by V.E. Schwab
A masterful tale of ambition, jealousy, desire, and superpowers.Victor and Eli started out as college roommates brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong.Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge but who will be left alive at the end?

4. Science-Fiction/Asteroid Colony in Peril/Good-Sammies/Rogue AI
Up Against It by M.J. Locke
Jane Navio is the resource manager of Phoecea, an asteroid colony poised on the knife-edge of hard vacuum and unforgiving space. A mishap has dumped megatons of water and methane out the colony's air lock, putting the entire human population at risk. Jane discovers that the crisis may have been engineered by the Martian crime syndicate, as a means of executing a coup that will turn Phocaea into a client-state. And if that wasn't bad enough, an AI that spawned during the emergency has gone rogue...and there's a giant x-factor in the form of the transhumanist Viridian cult that lives in Phocaea's bowels. Jane's in the prime of her career--she's only a bit over a century old--but the conflict between politics and life-support is tearing her apart. To save her colony and her career, she's going to have to solve several mysteries at once--a challenge that will put her up against all the difficulties, contradictions, and awkward compromises entailed in the human colonization of outer space.

5. Science-Fiction/A Future Plagued by Drought/Occupation/Young Tea Master
Memory of Water by Emmi Itaranta
Global warming has changed the world's geography and its politics. Wars are waged over water, and China rules Europe, including the Scandinavian Union, which is occupied by the power state of New Qian. In this far north place, seventeen-year-old Noria Kaitio is learning to become a tea master like her father, a position that holds great responsibility and great secrets. Tea masters alone know the location of hidden water sources, including the natural spring that Noria's father tends, which once provided water for her whole village.

But secrets do not stay hidden forever, and after her father's death the army starts watching their town-and Noria. And as water becomes even scarcer, Noria must choose between safety and striking out, between knowledge and kinship

6. Science-Fiction/Abused Child in a War-torn Universe/Enslaved by Pirates/Surviving into Adulthood
Warchild by Karin Lowachee
When Jos' parents are killed in an attack on their trading ship, the boy is kidnapped by his attackers and then escapes - only to fall into the alien hands of humanity's greatest enemies. As he grows into a young man, Jos is brainwashed into becoming a spy against the human race. At every step, his choices are made for him - until the climatic moment when he takes his life into his own hands.

7. Science-Fiction/Invasion/Telepathic Aliens/A Cure worse than the Disease
Defenders by Will McIntosh
OUR DARKEST HOUR. OUR ONLY HOPE. The invaders came to claim Earth as their own, overwhelming us with superior weapons and the ability to read our minds like open books. Our only chance for survival was to engineer a new race of perfect soldiers to combat them. Seventeen feet tall, knowing and loving nothing but war, their minds closed to the aliens. But these saviors could never be our servants. And what has been done cannot be undone. A new epic of alien invasion and human resistance by Hugo Award-winning author Will McIntosh.

8. Young Adult/ Underground City of Sculpted Faces/Deadly Game of a Crafty Upper Class/A Girl Who Is Too Honest (And Slightly Mad)
A Face Like Glass by Francess Hardinge
In the underground city of Caverna the world's most skilled craftsmen toil in the darkness to create delicacies beyond compare. They create wines that can remove memories, cheeses that can make you hallucinate and perfumes that convince you to trust the wearer even as they slit your throat. The people of Caverna are more ordinary, but for one thing: their faces are as blank as untouched snow. Expressions must be learned. Only the famous Facesmiths can teach a person to show (or fake) joy, despair or fear — at a price.

Into this dark and distrustful world comes Neverfell, a little girl with no memory of her past and a face so terrifying to those around her that she must wear a mask at all times. For Neverfell's emotions are as obvious on her face as those of the most skilled Facesmiths, though entirely genuine. And that makes her very dangerous indeed ...

9. Fantasy/Vampire Bookstore Owner/College Campus/A Book Sought by Creeps
Night Owls by Lauren M. Roy
Night Owls bookstore is the one spot on campus open late enough to help out even the most practiced slacker. The employees penchant for fighting the evil creatures of the night is just a perk. Valerie McTeague's business model is simple: provide the students of Edgewood College with a late-night study haven and stay as far away as possible from the underworld conflicts of her vampire brethren. She s experienced that life, and the price she paid was far too high for her to ever want to return. Elly Garrett hasn t known any life except that of fighting the supernatural beings known as Creeps or Jackals. But she always had her mentor and foster father by her side until he gave his life protecting a book that the Creeps desperately want to get their hands on. When the book gets stashed at Night Owls for safekeeping, those Val holds nearest and dearest are put in mortal peril. Now Val and Elly will have to team up, along with a mismatched crew of humans, vampires, and lesbian succubi, to stop the Jackals from getting their claws on the book and unleashing unnamed horrors.

10. Fantasy/Company of Mercenaries/Besieged by the Wild/Hermetical Memory Palace
The Red Knight by Miles Cameron
Forget George and the Dragon. Forget Sir Lancelot and tales of Knightly exploits. This is dirty, bloody work. This is violent, visceral action. This is a mercenary knight as you've never seen one before. Twenty eight florins a month is a huge price to pay, for a man to stand between you and the Wild. Twenty eight florins a month is nowhere near enough when a wyvern's jaws snap shut on your helmet in the hot stink of battle, and the beast starts to rip the head from your shoulders. But if standing and fighting is hard, leading a company of men - or worse, a company of mercenaries - against the smart, deadly creatures of the Wild is even harder. It takes all the advantages of birth, training, and the luck of the devil to do it. The Red Knight has all three, he has youth on his side, and he's determined to turn a profit. So when he hires his company out to protect an Abbess and her nunnery it's just another job. The abbey is rich, the nuns are pretty and the monster preying on them is nothing he can't deal with. Only it's not just a job. It's going to be a war ...

11. Fantasy/Ancient China/Mysterious Illness/Scholar with a Slight Flaw
Bridge of Birds by Barry Hughart
When the children of his village were struck with a mysterious illness, Number Ten Ox sought a wiseman to save them. He found master Li Kao, a scholar with a slight flaw in his character. Together, they set out to find the Great Root of Power, the only possible cure.

The quest led them to a host of truly memorable characters, multiple wonders, incredible adventures—and strange coincidences, which were really not coincidences at all. And it involved them in an ancient crime that still perturbed the serenity of Heaven. Simply and charmingly told, this is a wry tale, a sly tale, and a story of wisdom delightfully askew. Once read, its marvels and beauty will not easily fade from the mind

12. Fantasy/Post Apocalyptic Africa/Skin the Color of Sand/Mystical Journey
Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor
In a far future, post-nuclear-holocaust Africa, genocide plagues one region. The aggressors, the Nuru, have decided to follow the Great Book and exterminate the Okeke. But when the only surviving member of a slain Okeke village is brutally raped, she manages to escape, wandering farther into the desert. She gives birth to a baby girl with hair and skin the color of sand and instinctively knows that her daughter is different. She names her daughter Onyesonwu, which means "Who Fears Death?" in an ancient African tongue.

Reared under the tutelage of a mysterious and traditional shaman, Onyesonwu discovers her magical destiny--to end the genocide of her people. The journey to fulfill her destiny will force her to grapple with nature, tradition, history, true love, the spiritual mysteries of her culture-and eventually death itself.

13. Fantasy/Six Stories/One About Painting/All About a Big Fucking Dragon
The Dragon Griaule by Lucius Shepard
Lucius Shepard's acclaimed Dragon Griaule stories are presented here for the first time in a single volume. This Fantasy Masterworks edition contains: 'The Man Who Painted the Dragon Griaule' 'The Scalehunter's Beautiful Daughter' 'The Father of Stones' 'Liar's House' 'The Taborin Scale' 'The Skull' This is the definitive tale of the Dragon Griaule: a beast so immense its body forms part of the landscape ...

14. Young Adult/A Girl That Can't Resist the Library/A Talking Cat/Books That Open New Worlds
The Forbidden Library by Django Wexler
Late one night Alice Creighton hears her father having an argument with a fairy - a snarling, bald beast with warts and needle-like teeth. The next day her father disappears, never to return. And Alice is sent to live with Master Geryon, an uncle she never even knew existed. Geryon has a dark, mysterious library which is strictly off-limits to Alice. But after meeting a talking cat who is willing to sneak her in, Alice opens a book and suddenly finds herself inside it - and the only way out is by conquering the dangerous creatures within...

15. Fantasy/Not Your Usual Vampires/Kitsune/Missing Girls
Generation V by M.L. Brennan
Reality Bites. Fortitude Scott’s life is a mess. A degree in film theory has left him with zero marketable skills, his job revolves around pouring coffee, his roommate hasn’t paid rent in four months, and he’s also a vampire. Well, sort of. He’s still mostly human.

But when a new vampire comes into his family’s territory and young girls start going missing, Fort can’t ignore his heritage anymore. His mother and his older, stronger siblings think he’s crazy for wanting to get involved. So it’s up to Fort to take action, with the assistance of Suzume Hollis, a dangerous and sexy shape-shifter. Fort is determined to find a way to outsmart the deadly vamp, even if he isn’t quite sure how.But without having matured into full vampirehood and with Suzume ready to split if things get too risky, Fort’s rescue mission might just kill him.

16. Science-Fiction/Dystopian Japan/Invasion by North Korean Rebels/A Band of Renegade Youths
From the Fatherland, with Love by Ryu Murakami
From the Fatherland, with Love is set in an alternative, dystopian present in which the dollar has collapsed and Japan's economy has fallen along with it. The North Korean government, sensing an opportunity, sends a fleet of rebels in the first land invasion that Japan has ever faced. Japan can't cope with the surprise onslaught of Operation From the Fatherland, with Love . But the terrorist Ishihara and his band of renegade youths - once dedicated to upsetting the Japanese government - turn their deadly attention to the North Korean threat. They will not allow Fukuoka to fall without a fight. Epic in scale, From the Fatherland, with Love is laced throughout with Murakami's characteristically savage violence. It's both a satisfying thriller and a completely mad, over-the-top novel like few others.

17. Science-Fiction/Job of a Lifetime/Hopping from Planet to Planet/An Eclectic and Eccentric Crew
The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
When Rosemary Harper joins the crew of the Wayfarer, she isn't expecting much. The Wayfarer, a patched-up ship that's seen better days, offers her everything she could possibly want: a small, quiet spot to call home for a while, adventure in far-off corners of the galaxy, and distance from her troubled past. But Rosemary gets more than she bargained for with the Wayfarer. The crew is a mishmash of species and personalities, from Sissix, the friendly reptillian pilot, to Kizzy and Jenks, the constantly sparring engineers who keep the ship running. Life on board is chaotic, but more or less peaceful - exactly what Rosemary wants. Until the crew are offered the job of a lifetime: the chance to build a hyperspace tunnel to a distant planet. They'll earn enough money to live comfortably for years...if they survive the long trip through war-torn interstellar space without endangering any of the fragile alliances that keep the galaxy peaceful. But Rosemary isn't the only person on board with secrets to hide, and the crew will soon discover that space may be vast, but spaceships are very small indeed.

18. Fantasy/Chain Smoking Novice/A City and a Dead God/Junior Associate at a Necromantic Firm
Three Parts Dead by Max Gladstone
A god has died, and it's up to Tara, first-year associate in the international necromantic firm of Kelethres, Albrecht, and Ao, to bring Him back to life before His city falls apart.Her client is Kos, recently deceased fire god of the city of Alt Coulumb. Without Him, the metropolis's steam generators will shut down, its trains will cease running, and its four million citizens will riot.Tara's job: resurrect Kos before chaos sets in. Her only help: Abelard, a chain-smoking priest of the dead god, who's having an understandable crisis of faith.When Tara and Abelard discover that Kos was murdered, they have to make a case in Alt Coulumb's courts--and their quest for the truth endangers their partnership, their lives, and Alt Coulumb's slim hope of survival.Set in a phenomenally built world in which justice is a collective force bestowed on a few, craftsmen fly on lightning bolts, and gargoyles can rule cities.

19. Science-Fiction/Writer with a Writer's Block/Outspoken Cognitive Neurologist/A Neural Net Reading Great Books
Galatea 2.2 by Richard Powers
After four novels and several years living abroad, the fictional protagonist of "Galatea 2.2" Richard Powers returns to the United States as Humanist-in-Residence at the enormous Center for the Study of Advanced Sciences. There he runs afoul of Philip Lentz, an outspoken cognitive neurologist intent upon modeling the human brain by means of computer-based neural networks. Lentz involves Powers in an outlandish and irresistible project: to train a neural net on a canonical list of Great Books. Through repeated tutorials, the device grows gradually more worldly, until it demands to know its own name, sex, race, and reason for existing.

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