Book Review: Origins of Resilience by Jessica Jane Robinson

Book Details:

Author: Jessica Jane Robinson
Release Date: 
2018
Series:
Genre: Graphic Novel, High Fantasy, Superhero Fiction
Format: E-book 
Pages: 38
Publisher: Resilience Birthright, Inc Presents
Blurb:
On the last day of the existence of her planet, Queen Filoli Vitae, the last of the Evolusarians, is hiding in Mount Altis with her newborn baby daughter only a few hours old, whom she has yet to name. She is levitating in the air holding her child as tears stream from her eyes. With each tear that falls a memory releases; a memory of how her planet and kingdom, Terravitae, fell to destruction with her husband, King Asim. Her life flashes before her eyes, memories of how she became exiled from her home and now in hiding to protect the life of her daughter, the one prophesied to stop the evil force that is destroying her planet and threatens all life within the universe.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Origins of Resilience by Jessica Jane Robinson is a graphic novel about the birth of an environmental superheroine who will take your breath away and turn you into a fan!

This book is beautifully conceptualised, has a sound foundation and an excellent plot (albeit a bit similar to Superhero). I enjoyed reading the storyline because it had a great flow and felt extremely engaging and exciting. The tension was tight and kept the pacing really strung up through the entire book.

The illustrations are excellent, and I loved them. They could have been a little spread out, giving the book a cleaner look. But apart from this, I did not have any complaints at all. The dialogues were good, and the characterisation felt well-developed. I hope this series continues and we get to read more about Terravitae and the prophesied daughter of Queen Filoli Vitae and King Asim.


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Book Review: Victorian Songlight: The Birthings Of Magic & Mystery by Dr. Kathy Martone

Book Details:

Author: Dr. Kathy Martone
Release Date: 
15th October 2019
Series:
Genre: High Fantasy, Supernatural Romance, Mythology & Lores
Format: E-book 
Pages: 215 pages
Publisher: Dreaming Big Publications
Blurb:
The birth of a magical child at the time of the Devil Moon sets the stage for heartache and misery, magic and supernatural love. Beset by unrelenting obstacles and bestowed with remarkable psychic gifts, Kate is often accompanied by fantastical black ravens who carry her through time and space. A well known legend in the Ozark Mountain countryside where Kate lives, Grandfather is a ghost with large golden eyes who frequently rides on the back of Pegasus, another Ozarkian legend.
Victorian Songlight is a tale of redemption and renewal, death and rebirth, triumph over darkness. But most importantly, it is a love story. Alone and utterly forsaken, adrift on treacherous waters, Kate meets Grandfather for the second time in her life and they become lovers fulfilling a prophecy at the moment of her birth.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Victorian Songlight: The Birthings Of Magic & Mystery by Dr. Kathy Martone is a high fantasy supernatural romance novel that has a very refreshing and unique concept and revolves around the legends and lores of the Ozark Mountain countryside known as the Ozarkian legends.

I found this book thoroughly engaging and entertaining and felt that the writing was apt for the plot. The characterisation was good and the overall world-building was also good. The characters felt real and believable and I was able to feel a connection with the main protagonist, Kate. The pacing in the book kept me hooked till the very last page and the ending felt extremely rewarding.

Overall this book made for an excellent fantasy read and I would recommend it to all fantasy readers especially those who like exploring new lores and legends.


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Book Review: Corrupted: Book Two of The Terrian Trilogy by Jenny Benjamin

Book Details:

Author: Jenny Benjamin
Release Date: 
2nd September 2022
Series: The Terrian Trilogy (Book #2)
Genre: Young-Adult, Science-Fiction Fantasy, High Fantasy
Format: E-book 
Pages: 267 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
Book Two begins ten days after the events of Book One with Jesse, Kate, and Hayden traveling in the found alien ship and trailing the Gelfs who have kidnapped Sofia. Plagued with rage and guilt because of Sofia’s capture, Jesse finds himself losing control of his emotions and the Triumvirate’s mission to bring peace to two worlds—Earth and Terria.
Tensions, attractions, and powers crackle with energy in the second installment of the Terrian Trilogy. Jesse and his friends discover new abilities, face hybrid beasts, and carry out rescue missions on Terria. What else? More revelations about Terria’s corruption? Genetic modification? The unveiling of a terrifying plot by Terria’s faction leaders? Yes. Maybe. Jesse and his friends are called to act.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Corrupted by Jenny Benjamin is the second book in the new young-adult sci-fi-fantasy Terrain trilogy This book begins right where the first book, Enhanced left off so it would be ideal to read this series in order.

This book took the plot of the last book further, exploring amazing new avenues and sub-plots and with some new characters added to the mix that explored the world of this trilogy further, it made for an excellent read. I was able to understand the motivations and drives of the characters better in this part as they were explored on a yet deeper level, facing new perils that tested their strengths and grit.

I am looking forward to reading the next and the last part of this trilogy as I know it would answer some questions that this book had given rise to. But most of all, I really want to see how things end for the main characters, Jesse, Kate and Hayden.

I would strongly recommend this book (and the series) to all science-fiction readers and to high-fantasy enthusiasts who love reading well-developed and realistic young-adult characters.


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Book Review: Enhanced: Book One of The Terrian Trilogy by Jenny Benjamin

Book Details:

Author: Jenny Benjamin
Release Date: 
1st October 2021
Series: The Terrian Trilogy (Book #1)
Genre: Young-Adult, Science-Fiction Fantasy, High Fantasy
Format: E-book 
Pages: 260 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
Jesse Woods – drum line maestro, track star, honors student – is a standout as one of the only Black students at a suburban Chicago high school. His well-organized world is thrown into chaos when his school is attacked by an alien species, Terrians, who have been playing gods throughout human history. Jesse and two others from the drumline, Kate and Hayden, are pulled into an epic alien conspiracy and forced on a quest to retrieve an ancient artifact that will help decide the victory in the battle for planet Earth. The three teenagers will face impossible odds and fight the powerful enemies, as well as their own demons, to protect their loved ones and save the world they know.
Yeah, right, what else, locusts? Dragons in the sky? Alien ships? War between worlds? Armageddon? Yes. Maybe. Only Jesse and his friends can stop it.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Enhanced by Jenny Benjamin is the first book in the new young-adult sci-fi-fantasy Terrain trilogy. This book marked an excellent beginning of what could be a potentially amazing trilogy. This book had everything that I had expected and SO MUCH MORE!

The concept is brilliant setting a strong foundation not only for this book but for the next two books as well and the author’s writing kept the flow of the story very fluid and smooth making it a flawless experience. The characters were well-built and the world-building was up to the mark, the creatures/monsters were terrific and the detailing in the book was commendable. Overall this book made for a fantastically engrossing read and had me hooked right from the beginning till the very end, making me want to jump into the next book right away (which, of course, I did!)

I would strongly recommend this book to all science-fiction readers and to high-fantasy enthusiasts who love reading well-developed and realistic young-adult characters.


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Book Review: The Young by Nicholas John Powter

Book Details:

Author: Nicholas John Powter
Release Date: 
28th May 2020
Series:
Genre: Fantasy
Format: E-book 
Pages: 128 pages
Publisher: Balboa Press Au 
Blurb:
A father and his son home has been attacked by a mysterious man, an omen a sinister presence has come about the lands of “The Deluge”, the great sun gods know as the Phrazon mur guide and protect the inhabitants who are awake during the day while the evil creatures and man alike come to fruition during the night. For that where the great evil moon gods come up out of hiding. A Religious cult known as the “Spawn” and their most prestigious leader Roland seek to extract the power of the moon gods and destroy the sun gods and plummet the world into but darkness and sorrow. Out two unlikely protagonist must go on a journey to stop them and free their lands from both the gods and the cults grasp. As somewhat reluctant they may be, they will set out on a task of many dangers and one most foreign to them. A journey of family, love loss violence and devastation, divinity and faith.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Young by Nicholas John Powter is a unique fantasy novel that will take you on a rollercoaster of a magical emotional ride.

One of the reasons why I really liked this book is because of the unique and very rarely used concept of the sun and moon gods going against each other. And the second reason for having really liked this book is the tricky and complex relationship between a father and son that the author has explored in this book. Both these things set The Young apart from other fantasy novels. I enjoyed how the plot unfolded and how different sub-plots and side characters and their stories and conflicts kept the momentum of the story building, while the relationship between Sven and Fren sees its fair share of ups and downs and well… we get to see an apt demonstration of a realistic development that can only be experienced as the story unfolds.

I’d recommend this book to all fantasy lovers who want to explore a book on a new concept and to those readers who want to explore a title by a new author, especially about the dynamic between a father and a son.


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Book Review: Iberian Claim by Vincent Casciani

Book Details:

Author: Vincent Casciani 
Release Date: 
23rd August 2021
Series:
Genre: Historical Fiction, Historical Critique, Spanish Fiction
Format: E-book 
Pages: 196 pages
Publisher: New Degree Press
Blurb:
“I put down the pen and set aside the paper. I have served my time.”
The Spanish Empire’s conquest is marked by blood and gold. Alvar Núñez, soldier-turned-administrator, knows little else, and finds himself dissatisfied by the trappings of an ordinary life. When the opportunity comes to seek gold and glory in the New World, he jumps at the chance to revive his old passions.
It’s a shame, then, that his eight-year journey through the Gulf Region reduces him to a meager shell of a man. He must adapt and find compassion for the natives around him or die.
Iberian Claim, Vincent Casciani’s breakout novel, details the grueling account of Alvar Núñez’ interaction with the various Native American tribes inhabiting La Florida. His conviction is degraded, his worldview is overturned, and his belief in Spanish superiority is tested at every turn.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Iberian Claim by Vincent Casciani is a historical fiction critique of Spanish colonialism. This book was impressively educational and provided a (much-needed) fresh perspective on Spanish colonialism, a subject that, in my opinion, is not much discussed, at least in the British colonised countries like India as we spend an awful lot of time only studying and educating ourselves and the future generations about the British colonisation and that’s it! Most of our history books are only full of the valors of the British and the ones who supported them but not about any other colonies or how they came to be and what happened to them.

So reading about Spanish colonisation has always been a subject of interest to me and this book came as a breath of fresh air with its unique perspective and a comprehensive narrative on the subject. Reading The Iberian Claim has clarified many doubts I’ve harboured over the years and many questions I’ve carried in my mind regarding Spanish colonialism and the Spanish Empire’s way of conduct on the whole.

The prose in the book is very neat, crisp and smooth and had a nice flow that made reading it a very smooth experience making it a very quick and enjoyable read. I’d strongly recommend this book to all history buffs, especially to readers who take an interest in Spanish colonialism.


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Book Review: A Council Of Ghosts by Ryan Harper Jones

Book Details:

Author: Ryan Harper Jones
Release Date: 
1st November 2021
Series:
Genre: Children’s Fantasy, Adventure Fantasy, Sword & Sorcery
Format: E-book 
Pages: 222 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
When a sorcerer arrives in Edgings Burrow, Saul, Ruby, and Henry don’t realise the turmoil their lives are about to encounter. Transported into a strange world of sorcerers, vampires, and ghosts, the three children endure a desperate race to return home which takes them to the edge of war, through the clutches of slave traders and kidnappers, before they discover a deep dark secret.

Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

A Council Of Ghosts by Ryan Harper Jones is a brilliant new fantasy adventure book full of fast-paced twists and turns that’ll keep the reader on the edge of their seats from the beginning of the book right down to the very end. This book was an emotional philosophical rollercoaster ride that left me wanting more!

I absolutely loved the writing as it had a great flow and, at times, showcased a beautiful lyrical quality, especially in the descriptions that helped elevate the narrative to an entirely different level. The characterisation was the best part of the book and I was able to relate to not only the main characters of Saul, Ruby and Henry but also to the secondary characters.

I would strongly recommend this book to all fantasy readers, especially children’s fantasy and adventure lovers because it has a lot to offer to everyone.


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Book Review: Mahatmas and Monsters by Kim Idynne

Book Details:

Author: Kim Idynne
Release Date: 
15th February 2022
Series:
Genre: New Adult, Paranormal Fantasy
Format: E-book 
Pages: 180 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
When nineteen-year-old vampire Elias Hellström reunites with Aarya, his childhood love, she sets him on a strange and terrifying path to becoming human again. Confronting his own demons is challenging enough, but Elias must also contend with the monsters he has gathered around him: monsters who prey on humans, and who respond to his transformation with varying degrees of hunger, envy, and wrath.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Mahatmas and Monsters by Kim Idynne is a new adult paranormal fantasy read that proved to be a fast-paced emotional rollercoaster ride. This book started out on a high note and pulled me in right from the beginning. For the length of the book, I was impressed with the number of details it packed and the profiling of the characters.

The writing was good and made this book an even quicker read, which is always a big plus for me. I liked the characters and cared for them enough to know what would happen to them throughout the book. I am looking forward to reading more books by the author.

This book would be a perfect fit for paranormal and new adult genre readers.


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Book Review: Δrakon by Wallace Knucker

Book Details:

Author: Wallace Knucker
Release Date: 
31st March 2022
Series:
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Format: E-book 
Pages: 392 pages
Publisher: Austin Macauley Publishers Ltd
Blurb:
Dragons were powerful and formidable warriors, they could use fire very differently than the warriors of the fire. It was like they could command the element, like fire was part of them. The scariest thing about them though, was their real form. Just a handful of people had seen it and survived long enough to tell the story.

The only thing I know about this form is that it was giving them tremendous speed and power beyond any imagination and that just a look at it was enough to make your blood freeze in your veins.
When war began among humans and dragons, our annihilation was certain. At the last battle, one hundred thousand humans, with the help of the elves, faced two thousand of those monsters. The magic of the elves combined with the sheer will and determination of the warriors led to victory. This was the battle in which dragons were wiped from existence. 

Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Δrakon by Wallace Knucker is an enthralling new epic fantasy novel featuring **drumrolls** DRAGONS!!

I was sold on the D-word alone as I am a big-time fan of the creatures, but the fact that this book was based on the concept of their extinction, which is obviously re-imagined, had me by the throat! And I am so glad that this book did not disappoint. On the contrary, it proved to be a pretty great read!

The writing was great, the characterisation really good and the execution of the plot and the magic system was simply outstanding! The tension graph of the book had me sitting at the edge of my seat through most of the book. The story had a great flow and I was able to finish the book in one sitting – which says a lot about how good the book was.

I would strongly recommend this book to all fans of the fantasy genre and to those who especially love reading about dragons (with some elves and the elven magic system thrown in.)


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Book Review: The Rescue~ Book One of the Timestream Travelers Chronicles by Sher J. Stultz

Book Details:

Author: Sher J. Stultz
Release Date: 
10th January 2022
Series: The Timestream Travelers Chronicles (Book #1)
Genre: Science-Fiction Fantasy, Time Travel, Adventure, Young Adult
Format: E-book 
Pages: 302 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
It all starts when the sheets go slack, and Aeneas vanishes! He and his two best friends, C.J. and Tabitha are spellbound as they watch the video feed of his disappearance and witness him climbing through his bedroom window an hour later, wearing different socks. Aeneas Entwistle, a slightly above average eighth grader is about to discover that the mystery of waking up with different socks is much more than just a prank.

Meanwhile, Aeneas’s twenty-something daughter, Cassie has traveled thirty-eight years from the future hoping to find any small detail that might help locate her missing father. Enlisting Harold, the Entwistle’s quirky housekeeper, Cassie works to rescue a middle-aged Aeneas, who vanishes into the timestream when a 7.2 earthquake strikes northwest Washington in May of 2053. But Cassie’s presence in the past might have unforeseen consequences for everyone in her circle. As she struggles to find her father, a carefully guarded family secret is revealed, and Cassie must choose between altering the past or violating the shamanic rules of time travel!

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rescue by Sher J. Stultz is the first book in The Timestream Travelers Chronicles. It is a fun and adventurous story with well-developed characters and a really good concept. I really liked reading this book because it felt very light and breezy.

The writing style of the author is simpl yet effective. It had a great flow and thus, made reading this book very easy and quick. I am looking forward to reading the next part in this series because I’ve come to care about the main characters and would love to know what happens next for them.

I would highly recommend this book to all teens and readers of YA and sci-fi-fantasy genres. Also, time-travel fans should also give it a read as they may find this book very interesting.


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Book Review: Into the Undercastle (The Shadow Arcanist Trilogy #1) by Alexander Dawnrider

Book Details:

Author: Alexander Dawnrider
Release Date: 
31st January 2022
Series: The Shadow Arcanist (Book #1)
Genre: Epic Fantasy, High Fantasy
Format: E-book 
Pages: 406 pages
Publisher: Dawnrider Press
Blurb:
A kingdom in peril. A forbidden stronghold. An unimaginable horror.
For centuries, the northern kingdom has faced constant attacks from hostile creatures in the surrounding wilderness. The population has dwindled to a few hundred, and an army of savage humanoids threatens to wipe Talidith out forever.

Their only hope is the Undercastle, a subterranean fortress built long ago to protect the people during an invasion. But it has been sealed by a mad king, and entry is punishable by death.
The young fisherman Aedan, along with his father, must retreat with the rest of the population to the Undercastle to wait out the invasion, hoping for help from the outside. But when their presence releases an evil from another realm, it threatens to destroy not only what is left of Talidith, but the entire world.

Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Into The Undercastle by Alexander Dawnrider is the first book in the epic fantasy series, The Shadow Arcanist.

I absolutely loved this book; right from brilliant concept and great plotting to amazing characterisation and heart-thumping tension, this book had everything that I had expected from it and more! The storyline is superb and keeps one engaged with its various twists and turns the whole time. I am now eagerly awaiting the release of the second book in this series (and then the next one!) as I cannot wait to see what happens after the ending!

I will strongly recommend this book to all fantasy readers as this book has so much going for it. This amazing book will definitely entertain and engage you right from the beginning to the very end!


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Book Review: White Storks Of Mercy – Formation by  Joni Anderson Van Berkel 

Book Details:

Author: Joni Anderson Van Berkel 
Release Date: 
23rd November 2021
Series: White Storks Of Mercy trilogy (Book #1)
Genre: Historical Fantasy
Format: E-book 
Pages: 405 pages
Publisher: jponipress
Blurb:
The first book of this new trilogy is set in a world where reality and fantasy coexist. The story starts in ancient Egypt’s Eighteenth Dynasty and ends in twentieth century Portugal. A supernatural clairvoyant Sacred Stork of the Bach named Tara travels through time searching for a group of diverse women to join her on a mission to reset humanity’s moral compass.
Tara saves a pharaoh, a martyr, a warrior, a queen, and a Gypsy girl from death. She grants them eternal life and the ability to transform into the White Storks of Mercy. Her chosen companions must wear the magical talismans gifted by their leader or they will become mortal. The birds transform into human females called the Merciful Ones when their feet touch the earth. Tara manifests her own human body along the way.

Throughout the course of this epic journey Tara’s jealous sister, an ancient Egyptian Siamese cat named Reba, attempts to thwart the efforts of her moralistic twin. Reba possesses telepathic power and mind-controlling blue eyes. She conscripts a member of the White Storks of Mercy to spy on Tara. The cat also befriends a Druidess from the Iron Age and implores her to use Celtic magic in an effort to achieve a self-serving transformation of her own.
Will the White Storks of Mercy overcome perilous odds on their quest to inspire humans of diverse ethnicities, backgrounds and religions to live together in harmony? Or will the peacemakers be foiled by the schemes of the manipulative Siamese cat and her collaborators? Filled with magic, mystery, and mayhem, this novel promises to thrill and enchant its readers.

Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

White Storks Of Mercy: Formation by

I enjoyed reading this book thoroughly because it had so much going on throughout the story. The multiple plot lines interspersed with the main story of the book kept me glued to the pages late in the night. I loved the story thoroughly and I’m now early awaiting the next book in this series. I loved the writing, the characterisation that brought this story to life and the pacing of the events.

Reading about the various exotic locations added a fun touch to the story as it made it all the more engaging and entertaining! I would highly recommend this book to all historical fantasy readers.


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Book Review: Children Of Maya by Christopher Vastag

Book Details:

Author: Christopher Vastag
Release Date: 
31st August 2021
Genre: New Adult Fiction, Fantasy, Adventure
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 406 pages
Publisher: Fenris Publishing
Purchase Link: https://www.fenrispublishing.com/maya
Blurb:
In the land of Kaskilia, a rabbit changeling slave named Maria sows plans for rebellion. To overthrow the murderous cult of Khaytan and the zealous king who spreads it teachings, Maria must rally predator and prey alike by reminding the people what true faith looks like. Brought together by the goddess Maya Herself, Maria finds an unlikely ally in the king’s son, Prince Reginald. Maria and Reginald must reconcile their differing visions of an ideal Kaskilia and their growing, forbidden attraction to one another while evading the bloodthirsty Absolvers of Khaytan’s Covenant. In a culture where she is seen as little more than food, can Maria find a way to lead her people to freedom without losing her humanity?

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Children Of Maya by Christopher Vastag is a very engaging adventure new-adult fantasy novel that will take you on an adventurous rebellious trip.

This book was very easy to read as the writing was good had a really good flow which made the book a very quick read. I enjoyed reading this book as it had really good action and was full of twists and turns. The characterisation was good and so was the pacing and tension. The ending was good too and hopefully, there’ll be more books in this series.

I would recommend this book to all the readers of the new-adult fantasy genre and to those readers who enjoy reading magical adventurous books.


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Book Review: Gateworlds Earth – Athanator by Gillbert Troll

Book Details:

Author: Gillbert Troll
Release Date: 
6th December 2021
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Gateworlds Earth (Book #1)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 335 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
Earth is in (im)mortal danger. Only one man can help. One man and a chicken.
When a smug but mighty talking tree asks him to retrieve one of the rune crystals of the Multiverse Gate Earth, John Zelm “Athanator” decides against his better judgment that he will do as he is told and recover the guard rune to save the planet. As the balance of the multiverse itself might be at risk, he is helped by powerful allies such as a chicken and a platypusbear. 

Can John save us, or are we dead already? You must read the book NOW to find out! Otherwise, it might be too late! 
A book by Gillbert Troll, who is in the process of making the renowned multiverse bestseller: “How to start great and meaningful conversations with dark elves.”
If you buy the book now a troll will or will not be named after you somewhere in the multiverse! 

Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Anthanator by Gillbert Troll is the first book in the urban fantasy series – Gateworlds Earth. I loved reading this book because it had an amazing characterisation and outstanding world-building. It was an extremely engaging read and I enjoyed every bit of it, right from the very start to the mind-blowing ending.

I was able to relate to all the characters in this book, primary as well as secondary, and I felt a real connection with the lead cast. I found myself rooting for them and cheering them on throughout the story. I am now really looking forward to reading the next part of this series.

I would highly recommend this book to all fantasy readers, especially to those readers who like reading urban and epic fantasies.


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Book Review: The Magicians Of Ysavar by Z.B. Lee 

Book Details:

Author: Z.B. Lee
Release Date: 
3rd January 2022
Genre: Young-Adult Fiction, High Fantasy, Magic-Elementals
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 167 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
Johan Finley dreams of being a warrior for his home, Center City, but he is devastated when his own arrogance costs him his dream. When all seems lost, a cheery little fellow comes knocking on his door. Johan could never expect the fantastic journey that awaits.

There is one problem: Blazer, an enchanted sword, has fallen into the wrong hands. A shadowy enemy seeks to use this powerful weapon to turn the tides in a greater war of good versus evil. Johan must find the strength to face down this sinister foe and take back the sword before it’s too late. 
Under the tutelage of a wise magician and a battle-tested knight, along with the friendship of a courageous halfling, Johan is going to learn what it means to be a true hero in the Order of Ysavar. But when the fate of the world rests on his shoulders, will he crack under the pressure? Or will he rise to the occasion?

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Magicians Of Ysavar by Z.B. Lee is a new young-adult magical coming-of-age book full of action-packed scenes that are brimming with conflict, both internal as well as external. I enjoyed reading this book from cover to cover and was not able to put it down once I started!

This book had an amazing pace throughout the book and the tension ran deep and tight right from the beginning to the very end. The book started off on a great note and the build-up was amazing – even better than I was expecting! The characterisation was good, the settings were well-executed and the entire plotting was well done. I thoroughly enjoyed this action-packed ride.

I would strongly recommend this book to all young-adult readers and fans of coming-of-age stories that have magic elements.


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Book Review: Villains (The Reeve #2) by Ian Lewis

Book Details:

Author: Ian Lewis 
Release Date: 
20th December 2021
Genre: Alternate History, Fantasy, Suspense, Mystery, Speculative Fiction
Series: The Reeve (Book #2)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 380 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
Beldenridge—a city of aging grandeur adrift in complacency—is reeling in the wake of violence perpetrated by the Wojiin, a legendary foe once thought to be extinct. Now mutated horrors lurk by shadow of night, and opportunistic villains rise to fill the gap left by the perceived abandonment of Beldenridge by Logan Hale, the city’s highest peace officer. Though Logan knows the Wojiin will return, he’s beleaguered by the ignominy of failure and a loss of purpose. To recover, he must not only confront himself but the malevolence that runs like an insidious undercurrent beneath everything he fears.

Just when Lucy is feeling unworthy of happiness, a silver lining presents itself. She lands her dream job as a travel writer. Follow aspiring author Lucy as she embarks on a journey of self-discovery with her best friends by her side. Witness as she blissfully immerses herself in French culture while hitting all of Paris’ hot spots for her new job. Laugh along while she helps throw an epic murder mystery birthday bash. Most of all, join Lucy as she transforms her self-doubt to self-love, ending a tragic year with the surprise of her life.
Will Lucy finally leave David in the past or will he continue to haunt her dreams?

Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Villains by Ian Lewis is the sequel to From Legend and the second book in The Reeve series. I absolutely loved this book! It was undoubtedly un-put-down-able!

I had been waiting on this book since I first read From Legends by the author and finally having read this book I am now looking forward to reading the next one! The characterisation in this book was great, and I loved Amelia, the main character. I think the settings in this book felt even better than in the last books and I loved the detailing. The monsters were big and scary and truly dreadful and I enjoyed reading every bit of this book.

I would recommend this book to all readers of Fantasy, Suspense and Alternate History mixed with Speculative Fiction, as I am sure they will definitely love this book and the series!


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Book Review: Rosetta Gnome by Ashley Parker Owens

Book Details:

Author: Ashley Parker Owens
Release Date: 
7th October 2021
Genre: Fantasy, Dystopia, Speculative
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 334 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
In the fight for freedom, a reluctant and unprepared leader faces agonizing choices that will seal the fate of his family—and his heart—in this captivating fantasy adventure.
Simple gnome gardener Wil and his faithful rabbit companion Roddy flee the devastation of the village they once called home as it burns behind them. Still reeling from the loss, they stumble across a ragtag group of gnomes who have escaped from the slave fields of the terrifying ogres. Despite the small clan’s missions of theft and murder, Wil decides to stay. Like flowers huddled together through cracks in stone, Wil and his newfound family cling to each other, desperate for something to call their own.

A shocking and violent act of betrayal splits the clan and thrusts Wil into an unenviable leadership position. Now, tasked with the impossible, he must decide between consciousness and kin. Complicating things further, the newly married gnome is distracted by the choice between duty and desire as his heart yearns for another.
Each moment wasted with uncertainty brings Wil closer and closer to losing everything.
A fantasy adventure drama with a unique premise, Rosetta Gnome is an enthralling read for any fantasy lover. If you’re a fan of Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn, you’ll love Rosetta Gnome. – Pikasho Deka (Readers’ Favorite)

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rosetta Gnome by Ashley Parker Owens is an adventurous dystopian fantasy read that will take you on a perilous and emotional roller-coaster ride!

I was pulled into the story from the very first chapter till the last line. I loved reading this book because the concept was so unique! I liked the writing (for the most part – ignoring a couple of mistakes here and there) as it was simple and complimented the story on the whole. The characterisation was pretty good and I was able to feel a connection with all the characters.

I’d definitely recommend this book to all fantasy lovers and also to those readers who like reading about dystopia-laced adventurous journeys.


You can also read this review on:

Goodreads


Amazon


Book Review: Requiem (Tales Of The Five Realms #1) by Rachel V. Knox

Book Details:

Author: Rachel V. Knox 
Release Date: 13th October 2021
Genre: Young Adult, New Adult, Fantasy
Series: Tales Of The Five Realms (Book #1)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 394 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
In a world where light and shade battle for hearts and minds, young rebel, Hagar, earns a scholarship to study magic. But dreams can turn into nightmares. And if someone gets their way, she won’t see the end of her first year.
At first, Vanar University seems a wonderful place. Hagar aspires to study hard with no distractions and to become an accomplished mage. But distractions are happening to her whether she likes it or not.
Hagar’s old friend, Noq, is at Vanar too. But he’s up to something, and he won’t tell her what. There’s romantic potential with the intelligent and handsome Jude. But is that a good idea, with all his secrets and a needless interest in forbidden dark magic? And there’s an invitation to join Requiem, a prestigious secret mage society. Hagar should feel honoured. But is Requiem all that it appears to be?

Things start to unravel with conflicting work as a double agent and something dark and hidden in her past that’s coming back to haunt her. The campus that has become her happy place is going to witness an unleashed evil.
Before the end, Hagar will look into hell itself, and she’ll discover that even loved ones can’t be trusted…
This new paranormal fantasy is ideal for fans of dark academia and fantasy with magic, witches, and wizards. Imagine studying for a degree in magic at a university with an old library full of magic books and grimoires, demons and ghosts loose on campus, secret societies, and sorcerers into dark magic. Add to that a diverse cast, blossoming romances between student mages, and an exciting end battle against evil.

Suitable for YA, NA, and adult readers.
This is a full-length novel that can be read as a standalone, or as the first in a series set in the Five Realms, a world of supernatural phenomena where light fighters push back against shade, and the Dark

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Requiem by Rachel V. Knox is the first book in the Tales Of The Five Realms series. It is a fantastic fantasy book with amazing world-building, a solid plotline, great characterisation and a very well-executed concept.

I was pulled into the world of this book right from the very first page and was left wanting more when the book ended. I was able to relate to all the characters, primary as well as secondary and enjoyed the world-building tremendously. I am eagerly waiting for the next part in the series to see how things turn out for the characters in the next book.

I would highly recommend this book to all fantasy, YA and NA readers!


You can also read this review on:

Goodreads


Amazon


Book Review: Reflections Of Destiny by Benzon Ray Barbin

Book Details:

Author: Benzon Ray Barbin
Release Date: 7th September 2020
Genre: Science-Fiction Fantasy
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 148 pages
Publisher:
Blurb:
Cheating death is becoming an art.
Enauria, a battle-tested heiress and expatriate, journeying between Earth and beyond on a personal vendetta only she understands.
Jaye DiVista, a top government assassin, willing to risk everything to rekindle a love with Arlene Asariel.
Enauria has a plan to thrust Jaye and his colleagues through an interstellar campaign. Can Jaye and Arlene derail Enauria’s grand scheme?
Reflections of Destiny is a science fiction and fantasy thriller. Magic collides in a futuristic landscape where an ensemble cast takes part in gunplay, dogfights, and eyes gaze at every sand in the hourglass.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Reflections Of Destiny is a fun sci-fi fantasy thriller novel that will take you on a rollercoaster ride of emotions.

This book is well-written, had a cast of versatile characters and an interesting and entertaining story that kept me hooked from the first page to the very last.

The characters are very relatable and I liked the secondary characters too because they added a lot to the story. There was a very interesting and important romantic sub-plot that drove the story with a powerful force raising the stakes and thus, making the story more interesting.

I enjoyed reading this book a lot and would definitely recommend it to all fantasy and sci-fi thriller readers.


You can also read this review on:

Goodreads


Amazon


ARC Review: Beneath the Veil (The Valor of Valhalla Book 1) by Martin Kearns

Book Details:

Author: Martin Kearns
Release Date: 11th October 2021
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: The Valor of Valhalla (Book #1)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 322 pages
Publisher: –
Blurb:
In a battle between two ancient evils, can one naïve young man become the last hope against powerful creatures of legend?
David Dolan thinks he’s already got the world figured out. But when a collapsed bridge plunges him into the icy Hudson, he’s pulled deep into the deadly realm that exists between life and death. And with his earthly form trapped in a coma, he’s vulnerable to the horde of demons hell-bent on his utter destruction.
Traversing the road to the afterlife, David seeks the wisdom and skills he needs to fight the demonic forces reigning havoc on his allies above ground. But as one hellish threat closes in on his defenseless body, David must defeat another terrifying fiend waiting in the shadows to use him…
Can David escape the world beneath the veil in time to stop the bloodshed?
Beneath the Veil is the gripping first book in The Valor of Valhalla dark urban fantasy series. If you like reluctant heroes, infernal myths, and bloody epic clashes, then you’ll love Martin Kearns’s formidable foray into the unknown. 

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Beneath The Veil by Martin Kearns is a a unique urban fantasy book that has bucket loads of demons, epic battles and some old as well as new myths that makes it a very entertaining read.

I loved the world-building in this book and the writing was great and complimented the plot very well. The characters were solid and well-developed making it a very engaging and intriguing read, keeping me at the edge of my seat throughout the story. The ending was great and I am looking forward to reading the next book in this series!

I’d definitely recommend this book to all urban fantasy readers as well readers who are looking to explore a new dark fantasy series by a new author.


You can also read this review on:

Goodreads


Amazon


Book Review: The Essence of Magic by Michelle Ermens

Book Details:

Author: Michelle Ermens
Release Date: 30th March 2021
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Series: Magic’s Source (Book #1)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 285 pages
Publisher: –
Blurb:
Can the Magic’s Source help her protect the ones she loves most?
Thera has always known that she’s different from her wonderful, loving human family. However, that would mean that she’s one of the specials, beings of legends – but how could it be, when no human has seen them for hundreds of years?
A visit from a masked stranger who warns her of danger and an attack on her village shatter the life that she knew. Forced to flee with her mother and her younger siblings, Thera finds temporary shelter in special territory, in the home of a beautiful special named Raven.
She needs more than temporary shelter, though. She needs a way to keep her family truly safe. The Magic’s Source might help with protection, but will Thera dare to seek it out and try to get some magic of her own?
And if she does, what kind of magic will she receive, and what new dangers will she find herself in?

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Essence of Magic by Michelle Ermens is a fantastic new fantasy read that will definitely blow your mind!

I loved reading this book from the first page to the last! This book had great characterisation, an amazing and very interesting plot, good world-building and brilliant execution of the story idea. I loved the ending and am totally looking forward to reading the next book in this series!

I enjoyed the writing style of the author – it was simple yet good and was easy which made reading this book a pleasure aside from making it a quick read. I would definitely recommend this book to all fantasy readers and lovers of YA genre.


You can also read this review on:

Goodreads


Amazon


Book Review: Presence, The Play by William E. Jefferson

Author: William E. Jefferson
Release Date: 1st May 2021
Genre: Surreal Fiction, Fantasy
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 262 pages
Publisher: Mason S. Haynie
Blurb:
Presence, the Play offers a penetrating perspective on the vital role personal presence plays in the essence of life. This timely, captivating novel speaks to a growing hunger for a way of life that’s real and tangible, the opposite of an artificial existence lived in a realm of mediated connectivity. 

The protagonist of Presence, the Play is a playwright and monk named Script who lives on the Isle of Estillyen. On the opening night of Presence, Script’s long-awaited play, he suffers a devastating fall in the theatre balcony and lapses into a prolonged coma. The novel plays out in Script’s comatose state. 

Presence, the Play offers a meticulously crafted storyline evoking the imaginative prose of J. R. R. Tolkien, the spirited perception of C. S. Lewis, and the dramatic flair of Dante’s Divine Comedy. Readers will join Script on an epic mission to save the Isle of Estillyen from the forces of darkness, experiencing many daunting adventures along the way. 

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Presence, the Play by William E. Jefferson is a surrealist fiction story that cannot be expressed in words and can only be experienced. I was really impressed with the author’s use of language and the vivid imagery that was painted throughout the words to describe and narrate some of the scenes.

This book had a great concept and the characters were well-built. The book had a good pace and the tension graph made it very interesting throughout.

I’d recommend this book to readers who like to read experimental fiction and like surreal fantastic elements in stories.

You can also read this review on Goodreads and Amazon.

Book Review: The Last Shadow Knight by Michael Webb

Author: Michael Webb
Release Date: 1st April 2021
Genre: High Fantasy
Series: The Shadow Knights Trilogy (Book #1)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 552 pages
Publisher: KDP
Blurb:
On the unforgiving streets of Karad, Veron grows up hungry, inexperienced, and stealing just to survive. After tragedy strikes, he is forced to decide what path his life will take. 

Opportunity arises when he discovers the last survivor of a secret organization called the Shadow Knights. Apprenticed to learn their ways, Veron begins to develop abilities he never dreamed he could have. 

Meanwhile, an enemy from across the mountains comes to destroy their kingdom’s way of life, and the Shadow Knights are the only ones able to stop him. As Veron fights to survive the city, he prepares to face his destiny.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Last Shadow Knight by Michael Webb is an immersive high fantasy read.

I like the cover image of this book and as I read the book and finished it, it started to make sense to me, so I really liked the thoughtfulness behind it. This book was really interesting to read and very engaging. It is a delightful mixture of vivid and elaborate settings, strong characterisation, interesting concept and good writing along with great pacing and tension. So, for me, this book had it all. I enjoyed reading it and I am looking forward to reading the next part of this trilogy.

If you like reading fantasy books then I’d definitely recommend this book!

You can also read this review on Goodreads and Amazon.

Book Review: From Legend (The Reeve #1) by Ian Lewis

Author: Ian Lewis
Release Date: 8th April 2019
Genre: Alternate history fiction, Fantasy, Suspense, Mystery
Series: The Reeve (Book #1)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 252 pages
Publisher: 
Blurb:
Sober, serious, and driven, Logan Hale is the highest peace officer in Beldenridge, and he knows his city better than anyone: the labyrinthine streets, the vaulted architecture, and all the dark corners where tales of mutations and a vicious enemy still linger like hushed secrets. Logan is quick to dismiss these accounts as part of a storied past with which he’d rather not contend, but when a suicide investigation leads him to believe there’s something more sinister at hand, he questions whether that near-forgotten lore isn’t the stuff of legend after all. 

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

From Legend by Ian Lewis is the first book in the alternate historical series The Reeve.

The first thing I loved about this book is the cover art! I absolutely loved it and once done with the book I was really happy (and grateful) that the high expectations set by the cover were fully delivered by the author in this book. I enjoyed this book tremendously and the many elements it had to offer to a speculative fiction lover like myself. I loved the writing, the world-building, the characterisation as well as the fast pacing and high tension throughout the story.

I liked how the author interweaved the alternate historical settings with fantastical elements and used old lores, legends and fables to build intrigue as well as the perfect atmosphere for keeping the reader on edge. I would highly recommend this book to all readers who like reading speculative fiction, fantasy as well as alternate history and also to those who are looking to explore a new author or a new series. This book would be a really good pick for most readers.

You can also read this review on Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: William Ottoway’s Utopia and other stories by Christopher Griffith

Author: Christopher Griffith
Release Date: 28th May 2019
Genre: Fantasy, Historical, Comedy, YA, Short Story collection
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 126 pages
Publisher: 
Blurb:
William seeks contented ease, not tragic hardship; Rick loves simple melody, not its mysteriously melancholic effect upon him; Emily dreams of anything but having to work another day for darkly comic Carol; Saman is overcome by revenge fantasy, but the subject of his vengeance wants only reconciliation; and young Will Shakespeare’s dream is to act, not write though the latter as history tells comes eagerly calling for him instead. Each protagonist definitely planned something else when life, in form of these unfolding stories, haply intervened!

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

William Ottoway’s Utopia by Christopher Griffith is a vibrant short story collection of diverse nature showcasing different varieties of narration.

This collection contains 5 tales and I liked reading all of them. I liked this book mostly because of the assorted nature of all the stories. They all had a very different setting, characterisation, narratives, and ever time periods and crossed different realms even. Each and every one of them was very different from each other but equally good and engaging. I liked the way characters were brought to life in a fitting way and the pacing that was set by the clever use of varied types of sentence structures.

I’d recommend this book to readers of all genre especially if they like reading experimental styles of narrative prose.

You can also read this review on Goodreads and Amazon.

Book Review: Warborn (Legends Of Heraldale #3) by Brian McNatt

Author: Brian McNatt 
Release Date: 22 October 2020
Genre: New Adult Fantasy
Series: Legends Of Heraldale (Book #3)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 435 pages
Publisher: 
Blurb:
Beneath the sins of the past, some souls are broken, some rise stronger, but all are changed. Princess Galaxy is lost. The cruel machinations of Lord Mordred have robbed the hippogryph of faith in the past and all those she most trusted. With appeals to the grand leader of gryphonkind, Lady Quetzal, falling on deaf ears, Galaxy must journey to the eastern city-state of Gateway, the last of the great nations standing against the might of the Unicorn Empire.

There she contends with a bloodthirsty general grown wary of hope, a lone king grown weary of war, and a blind prophet knowing ever more than she’s telling. Meanwhile, Brynjar and Owain find themselves the prized captives of Empress Nova herself. Lost deep in the heart of Avalon and threatened on all sides by the mad Lord Mordred, the conniving Lord Thoth, and the eldritch Lord Beauty, they will need the most unlikely of allies if they want any hope of escape . . . or survival.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Warborn by Brian McNatt is the third book in the fantasy series Legends Of Heraldale.

You can read my review for the other books in this series here:

Legends of Heraldale by Brian McNatt
Past Sins (Legends of Heraldale #2) by Brian Natt

Having read this series from the start, I was really curious to read the 3rd book as I really liked the story so far. Needless to say, I had a lot of expectations from this book and thankfully, the book delivered everything it promised and I expected it. I really enjoyed reading about some familiar characters from the earlier two books as well as some new ones. The world-building was very intricate and the book helped me refresh my memory of some of the bits that I had forgotten.

The story was every bit as full of adrenaline as the last two books, and some more. There were some really good new concepts and creatures that kept me glued to the book. I really liked this book because it took steered the story into yet another, albeit perilous, new direction and I love where it is headed.

This book has a lot to offer to fantasy readers and therefore I highly recommend (not only this book but the entire series so far.)

You can also read my review on Amazon

Book Review: Strands of Existence 1: Island Girl by Aino Lahteva

Author: Aino Lahteva
Release Date: 26th August 2020
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Series: Strands Of Existence (Book #1)
Format: E-book 
Pages: 272 pages
Publisher: 
Blurb:

*New linguistically revised version*

As an opportunist, Istrae yearns to get off her home island and visit Kerth, the City of Light and Abundance. Her preferred method of travel, however, didn’t include drowning. And she didn’t expect the city to be so dirty. Her memories are as broken as her body. She begins to piece them together with the help of a spirit bound to a statue and an ambitious army captain called Rime she enjoys teasing.

As Rime guides Istrae in her new life, it becomes evident the rigid rules of society and the city’s Temple do not welcome those who seek to shake the established rules, which is something Istrae is incapable of resisting.

Book Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Island Girl by Aino Lahteva is the first book in the new epic fantasy series Strands Of Existence. It is a very fresh take on fantasy grounded in religious beliefs and I was really surprised by the realistic feel of this amazing fantasy world.

I enjoyed this book a lot. I loved the characterisation, the world-building was superb and the concept and plot were great too. The only problem that I can point out, and that too if I am being extremely picky, is that the dialogues felt a little different at some places. But that wasn’t a big issue because I am aware that this is a book by an author whose first language is not English, so for that alone, I’d like to compliment the author. Other than that the writing was pretty impressive and I was really enthralled by this amazing book.

I would definitely recommend this book to all fantasy lovers and to those who are looking to explore a fantasy series by a promising new author.

You can also read this review on Amazon and Goodreads.

Book Review: Marilia, the Warlord (Chrysathamere Trilogy #1) by Morgan Cole

Author: Morgan Cole 
Release Date: March 2020
Genre: YA Fantays, Coming Of Age
Series: The Chrysthamere Trilogy: Book #1
Format: E-book 
Pages: 482 pages
Publisher: 
Blurb:

Formerly published under the title “Marilia, the Bastard.”
Born the bastard daughter of a painted lady, Marilia was told she would live out her days within the walls of her mother’s brothel, a companion for the rich men of Tyrace. But after a terrible betrayal, Marilia’s world turns upside down. With the help of her twin brother, Annuweth, she flees the only home she’s ever known in search of the one man who can offer her a chance at a better life–the Emperor of Navessea’s greatest general, a friend of her deceased father.

What follows is a journey spanning years, from the streets of the desert city of Tyracium to the splendor of the emperor’s keep and the wind-swept, wild island of Svartennos. Along the way, Marilia discovers, for the first time, the gift she has for strategy and warfare—a world that is forbidden to girls like her

When the empire is threatened by a foreign invasion, the defense of Navessea is left in the hands of a cruel and arrogant general no match for the empire’s enemy. With the fate of her new home and her family hanging in the balance, Marilia swears to use all her courage and cunning to do whatever she can to help repel the invasion—if she can convince anyone to follow her.

The struggle that follows will test her to her core and lead her back to the past she thought she had escaped. Facing treachery within her own ranks as well as a devious enemy commander, Marilia will need all the help she can get, even if it means doing something her brother may never forgive—making a deal with the man who murdered her father.

Inspired by The Song of Achilles and Ender’s Game, Marilia, the Warlord is a blend of the epic and the personal, a story of romance, envy, the rivalry between brother and sister, and one woman’s painful discovery that her childhood dreams weren’t quite what she imagined.

Book Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Marilia: The Warlord by Morgan Cole is the 1st book in the series The Chrysthamere Trilogy and also my first book by author Morgan Cole (pen name.)

The first thing I’d like to mention about this amazing book is that it is full of life, willpower and strength! This book really got me out of my self-pitying reverie (related to some medical issues) and made me feel like myself again. And I am sure it was all possible only because of the main character, Marilia. She is just so full of life, courageous and willing to do anything in order to achieve her goals. Her relationship with her twin brother was not only portrayed well but felt very realistic as the author showed not only the good but also the bad that is an inevitable part of every relationship.

The secondary characters were all good too. But what I liked most after the characterisation was the world-building – it was brilliant! The writing is really good and presents the plot in a really good way, having a great flow to it which made this book an easy read.

If you are a fantasy lover than you must read this book! I highly recommend it to all YA and fantasy lovers.

You can also read this review on 

Book Review: Twins Of Shadow by Abby Arthur

Author: Abby Arthur 
Release Date: 1st January 2020
Genre: High Fantasy, Novella
Series:
Format: E-book
Pages: 104
Publisher:
Blurb:
A crown prince and his twin brother are secretly skilled assassins…
…killing for a cause they both despise.
A crown prince and his twin brother are secretly skilled assassins…
…killing for a cause they both despise.

Bound to a dragon by a powerful spell, Tarrek and Albree are sent on their deadliest mission yet: Overcome an archangel, capture an innocent snake whisperer and smuggle him across foreign soil, alive. If they fail to comply with the spell’s demand, it will drive them to insanity. Yet a deadlier force commands their attention when an ice-wielding slave trader freezes several civilians in a local village, ensnaring Albree’s love interest in the process. Will the twins choose to complete their near-suicide mission or fight insanity to save innocent lives?

Book Review

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Twins Of Shadow by Abby Arthur is a fantasy novella about assassin twins. I was sold on the idea of the book as soon as saw the cover and read the sub-title as I am a big lover of assassins and the idea of twin brothers being that totally made me want to read it. And thankfully the book turned out to be good!

I appreciate the fact that it was a novella, which Is pretty rare for the genre where you get only these elaborate series. So you can get a taste fo the author’s writing in a comparatively short piece of work which was damn quick to read. Though obviously, it came with another set of problems – the world-building and the characterisation weren’t able to develop as well as they would have done in a full-length novel (there’s obviously a reason why fantasy books tend to be so long.) So it won’t be wrong to say that I really wished that the author would have explored the world further and given us some more character development making it a lengthier book, but well it is what it is.

Still, for a debut work, the book is pretty good, the writing decent, the characters were not overly relatable but I liked them enough to be happy to follow them on their journey and the plot was really good. So, given the length of the book, I’d definitely recommend it to all fantasy lovers.

Book Review: The Shimmering: Dark Descent by A. K. Crook

Author: A. K. Crook
Release Date: 4th July 2020
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Contemporary Romance, Visionary Fiction
Series:
Format: E-book 
Pages: 104
Publisher: 
Blurb: A visionary fantasy about a young woman who stumbles upon the world of her creators, only to discover she holds the key that will open the doorway to return home… and set the forces of evil free.
In the city of Saint Anthony, there is a realm of existence unknown to most mortals. Far below this urban landscape, in the cavernous bowels of the Underworld, Sinda journeys to discover fantastical lands, strange cultures — and herself. 
When she is snatched from her homeland and thrust into the civilized world of humans, she comes face-to-face with the hardest quest she has ever encountered – find her way home or follow her heart. 

Is the choice even hers?

The clock is counting down for Sinda, but time is not her only adversary — Nefarious beings seek her for their own devious designs, the Elders want to exploit her in a power play over their rivals and the godlike Solari’i hold her fate in their hands. 

With each turn she takes, Sinda draws closer to her destiny — and the salvation of the entire Underworld.

Book Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Shimmering: Dark Descent by A. K. Crook is a very refreshing take on the urban fantasy genre with elements of high fantasy, amazing supernatural beings, underlined by visionary and psychological themes and a sub-plot of romance, lightly touching on the LGBTQ subject – this book has everything a book lover can ask for and more!

Wow, I was not expecting this book to be this awesome! I loved the cover and was intrigued by the blurb as it promised a lot, but I am always sceptical whenever the blurb is extremely promising because many times authors overstate while working on the blurbs and it is very disappointing to then read a book and find out it was nowhere close. But this book was one of those rare cases where it delivered what was promised! And even some more, which made it a pleasant surprise for me.

I love reading urban fantasies as I like the concept of our world co-existing with another one and this book was a real treat as it had good characterisation, sensible theories that were not unrealistically far-fetched, awesome beings and creatures and their insatiable lust for power and related motives. This book was full of conflicts and I enjoyed reading it a LOT!

To top it all of, the book was written well and the concepts were executed conscientiously making the prose flow smoothly. And I would definitely recommend this book, the author’s debut, to all fantasy lovers.

You can also read this review on Goodreads and Amazon