I don't know if you noticed, but Goodreads, a pretty cool book-lovers' blog site, occasionally sponsors giveaways. Recently, they sponsored a Tor contest, and since Tor publishes some of my currently favorite authors, I figured "what the heck". Best of all, all you had to do was sign up. No entry fee to pay, no series of questions to answer, no 500-word essay to write, no race to run. My kind of contest. (Well, not really. Actually, I like the ones where they ask you a series of questions, so you can show off how much trivia you have at your command, except they always start asking really obscure questions that no one in their right mind would know the answers to, sort of like how a spelling bee gets harder and harder until they're using outrageously esoteric words that probably aren't even English but we can't know that because nobody ever uses them in real life).
Since it was so easy and since so little was required, I entered the contest. And then, with a little sigh, I thought, "It doesn't matter. Except for that record back in the sixth grade, I never win anything."
Well, now I can finally say that I've won something besides the Greatest Hits of Ferrante and Teicher. Yes, friends, I and 79 other people are winners of copies of a book from Tor!
Here's the prize:
I'm familiar with David Weber, a sci-fi writer, from his Honor Harrington series (a sort of female Horatio Hornblower, but in space - and there the similarities end). Weber excels at military-type science fiction stories. It's not exactly my favorite genre, but I made an exception for Honor Harrington. Anyhow, Out of the Dark tells how the Hegemony, a group of galactic conquerors, once did a flyby of earth a long time ago and happened to observe Henry V's English troops mopping up the fields of Agincourt with the French; on that basis, they decide earthlings are bloodthirsty twits and therefore expendable. So they come back in the 21st century to conquer earth and wipe out the human race.
All right, let me get this straight: one group of humans wipes out another group of humans, so the aliens wipe out all the humans?! How, then, are they any different from us? And is some technologically superior life form going to see those aliens wiping us out and proceed to wipe them out? This could go on forever!
And yet the Hegemony, like any evil foe, does not count on the humans' fighting spirit and will to survive. Nevertheless, and in spite of those admirable traits, the humans find themselves few in number and doomed to extinction, until they discover they are not alone in this fight. No, they are aided by . . . vampires! Vampires naturally have a stake (no pun intended. Oh wait, yes it is) in human survival, because it's their food supply we're talking about.
Out of the Dark is chock full of action and suspense, so if you like alien invasion/military/survivalist/vampire stories - and who doesn't? - then I recommend David Weber's new book. It's possible this volume will be the first in a series, which [spoiler alert!] lets you know that the aliens don't win at the end.