Amber Drake, an avid reader of everything including cereal boxes, reviews for BSC Reviews and tries to keep track of her life and thoughts on her blog, http://www.dragonashes.com/ (Dragon Ashes). Of the 230 books Amber read this year, she winnowed down her favorites to get five that she enjoyed a great deal but were also for sale at a lower price for those bargain hunters (like her!) out there. What follows are April’s favorites, read in 2011, that are currently priced at below $5.00:
 
Stranger: The Blades of the Rose by Zoe Archer ($4.30) You may remember that last year I chose another Zoe Archer book as a favorite – this is from the same series. She does excellent characterizations that encompass a great many things other authors are afraid to touch on: race relations, beauty as a deficit, intelligence in women…basically she sticks real world people into fun and interesting historical situations, adds a bit of magic and a touch of romance and wham, you’ve got a tasty fireside read.
To get an even better price, The Blades of the Rose Bundle including Warrior, Scoundrel, Rebel, & Stranger is available for only $8.84.
 

A Secret Life by CJ Archer ($2.99) I have no idea if this author is related to Zoe Archer but considering I like both of their writing, it makes no difference to me! This one is a sweet historical romance involving a woman who only wants to write plays but has to hide that the playwright is a woman…and uses a man as her cover. Fun, with a sense of humor and a sweet romance.
Triumff: Her Majesty’s Hero by Dan Abnett ($2.99) I must warn you, this book appeals to my childish side! It is full of high school boy type of bathroom humor that kept me giggling throughout. If you don’t like fart jokes, you probably won’t like this. However, if Monty Python silliness makes you giggle, you might want to give this one a try.
The Black Prism by Brent Weeks ($2.99) This is the first in a new fantasy series, set in a world where color rules. Magic is based upon the colors you can see and control and the more colors you can control, the more power you can have. Lots of action and an intriguing magic system kept the pages turning swiftly.
Wistril Compleat by Frank Tuttle (99 cents) I don’t generally like to count short stories as novels but this is a book full of short stories that involve all the same characters in different situations so it is more like a chopped up novel than an anthology. Each story was complete and interesting and the characters of the wizard Wistril and his apprentice were people I enjoyed following around while they are having adventures; even though they would rather be at home with a mug of ale and a good fire!