Four Urban Fantasy & Space Opera Reads for Escaping the Commute

I’ve been reading a lot lately–almost as much as I did in college as a literature major!–and have developed many, many, many opinions. And what do we do with opinions? Share them! Right? 

I agree. 

So basically, I’m throwing out four great reads that really slay it in any of the following places: on the bus, on the train, poolside, or on a long flight. 

I’m about to go on a long flight, myself, so I’ll probably come back with even MORE great reads, and I guarantee I’ll be reading books in these series or by these authors (+ more!). 

Let’s get started! 

Should it be PNR? I don’t know, and I’m on book 8, so…

What I do know is you should read it if you enjoy any of the following shows and the tension between the leads: Warehouse 13, Bones, and probably Buffy the Vampire Slayer (I’ve never watched it, but I hear that the banter and tension resembles what’s in that show). There’s globe-trotting, vampires, epic fight scenes, and hunting for answers that are usually just out of reach.

Point is, this series is damn fun. The main POV is that of Kane Arkwright who is funny as hell. I don’t remember which book it’s in, but I’ll never forget this one line where Kane drops onto the back of a flying vampire like “a really good-looking anvil.” 

An anvil! I don’t know, it just made me laugh out loud.  

Kane’s easy to love though arrogant, and he looks out for his friends and nurses a crush on his partner, Rebel, and so there’s basically nothing I want more for Kane than for him to ONE DAY LAND Rebel. 

I know that sounds not very romantic, and maybe a bit shoddy of me, but they’re just the facts. I have this sneaking suspicion that the author will never let that happen…

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This one comes out of the gates of hell at full speed. But also, at this nice, emotionally fulfilling pace. The main protagonist quickly brings us into her world, which is not ours–but rather a version of the underworld where succubi and other sundry creatures live and compete for supremacy.

Logsdon’s writing is sleek and to the point, with well wrought scenes that keep both halves of your psyche engaged–we get the emotional sphere of the female lead as well as her no-nonsense action. She’s never overpowered and knows what she’s up against, but her wits keep her alive, which benefits all of us. 

Also, it’s hilarious.

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You’ll just have to. I didn’t want to, I’ll be honest. I was hoping to stick to one POV in this superb entry point into the Star Kingdom universe, but unfortunately Buroker is a master and I ended up loving both POV characters.

Both the aging (and full of aches and old war-wounds) scrappy female smuggler, and the mild-mannered robotics engineer are excellent characters. I just have to say, damn.

As I think about how this one worked me over again, surprise, I’m smitten once more. Buroker is skilled at starting at two points and setting up the entire story to work perfectly as the two seemingly unrelated storylines come together.

I may have given away too much already, but I really dug the world building in this and the galactic tension she’s set up. I have no idea where it’s going to go, but I’ve got book 2 queued up and can’t wait to dive in.

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…with no hope on the horizon. Oh wait, getting out of jail when she expected at least five more years, that’s kind of hopeful.

Ok, so yes, I’m recommending my own book. I know. It’s very classy. That’s how I live. This series is space opera, but it’s also the origin of a found-family. Holly Drake is basically starting from scratch. She needs a new career, new friends, and maybe someday a new lover (will she, won’t she…hmm, what will it be?!).

A job that could help her falls in her lap, but now she’s got to put together a crew to run a heist. How the hell does one pull off a heist? She’s about to learn.

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Check them out! And look, if you choose any from this list, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

There are entire universes out there, waiting to be discovered. Is that why we read? Escape? To learn how others see the world? To vicariously experience more than we could ever conceivably live in just one lifetime?

For me, there are so many reasons. One is to fall in love, to explore the mind of another, and in doing that learn more about myself. It is the ultimate exploration, a journey of the interior. Why do YOU read? 

If you’ve tried out any of these books, do let me know in the comments! And leave your recommendations for me there, if you’ve got something you think I should check out!

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