Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Review- Interregnum (Tales of the Empire Book 1) by S.J.A. Turney

Product Details

There are some things that I really enjoyed about the story. The secondary characters were very well written and added a lot of depth to the story. The battle scenes were very vivid and detailed. Velutio was a well written villain. There were some interesting plot twists that I didn't  expect. The military strategies were well executed.

Although the story was enjoyable, there were some small flaws. One problem I had with the story is that certain scenes seemed rushed. I will try to explain without giving any spoilers.  Earlier in the story, there was a character that I thought was an integral part of the story. I was wrong. Quickly fast forward and he is just an afterthought. How quickly the characters recovered from injuries was a bit far fetched. The process of Darius elevating to Emperor occurred rather suddenly. I think the relationship between Darius and Caerdin/Kiva could have been better written. I was left with some unanswered questions about Caerdin and his former life.

I would recommend this story to military fantasy lovers.

Pros: vivid battle scenes,  interesting secondary characters, 
Cons: grammatical errors, typos, character inconsistencies


Friday, June 3, 2016

Review - Thorn (Thorn Saga #1) by Joshua Ingle

I received an e copy from Netgalley containing the first two books in the series. All opinions are my own.
First of all, I love the premise of  angels vs demons and this was an original concept. Unfortunately, I have a few "issues" with the stories. I couldn't connect with any of the characters. They were just so dark and vile that I couldn't relate to them at all. Thorn, the main character was looking for redemption. One moment, he was pure evil and suddenly he wanted to be good again.
I'm all for anti-heroes and I love dark stories, but this was emotionally draining. I saw no light at the end of the tunnel. I know that these are demons and demons do bad things, but geez. Somewhere in between, the suicide whispers, the mass executions and the murder/attempted murders, I lost interest and  was hoping for the end to hurry up. But lo and behold,  I loved the twist at the end of book two and will finish the trilogy just to see how it ends.

I would recommend this series to anyone that likes very dark and twisted tales.

Pros: original concept, very well written
Cons: unlikable characters,  juvenile dialogue from certain characters.

3 out of 5 stars

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Review- In the Blood by R.L. Martinez

Book Blurb:
The Warrior 
The war may have ended, but a new battle begins for disgraced prisoner-of-war, Ottilde Dominax. Dreams of her witchbreed twin are visions of death and betrayal. Driven by their grim 
warning, she escapes her captors and races across nations to save her sister. 

But she may arrive too late… 

The Witch 
Lady Oriabel Dominax has kept her healing magic secret while she cares for her family’s struggling estate. But the arrival of a new lord hiding secrets of his own, the discovery of a dark and addictive magic and threats from a cruel blackmailer push her closer to disaster. 

Through it all, the Witch’s Tree calls

My Review

I received an e ARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

I'm a huge lover of the fantasy genre. I read the blurb for In The Blood and I could not wait to start reading. From the opening sentence, I was entranced. The author did a wonderful job with the main characters. The relationship between the twins Ottilde and Oriabel was well written. Ottilde is an ill-treated prisoner accused of killing the prince heir and Oriabel lives life as a healer, while trying to hide that she is a witch. A crime punishable by death. Although they were separated for a majority of the book, the author showed the strength of their bond through shared memories and visions. l loved the lengths that Ottilde was willing to go, in order to save her sister. Hito is intriguing, but I would have liked a little more of his back story. How did he become the "man" that he is? I can't delve deeper into this without giving spoilers. I enjoyed the relationship between Wilder the prison chief and Ottilde and can't wait to see how it develops. The pacing was great and there were no lull moments. It took me a little over a day to finish the story.

pros: interesting characters, fast paced, a prison escape, magic, wild beasts, twists and turns, evil villains, witchcraft
cons: The character Hito seemed to lack vital background information and the ending felt abrupt. 

I would recommend this story and look forward to reading the next book in The Witchbreed Series.

4/5 Stars

Friday, March 18, 2016

Review- Snakewood by Adrian Selby

Product Details

Blurb  "Once they were a band of mercenaries who shook the pillars of the world through cunning, alchemical brews, and cold steel. Whoever met their price won.
Now, their glory days behind them, scattered to the wind, and their genius leader in hiding, they are being hunted down and eliminated one by one. 
A lifetime of enemies has its own price. 
Adrian Selby brings us into an unforgettable new world filled with magic, mystery, intrigue, bloodshed and betrayal."

My review:

I received this book from Orbit and Netgalley  in exchange for an honest review. All opinions
are my own.

I read the blurb and saw the cover for Snakewood and I could not wait to read this story.  I will admit, that the beginning was slow 
going for me and I debated whether or not I should continue. By the time I reached the third chapter, I was very happy that I kept reading. 
There are high's and low's in this story and I will break them down the best way that I can.

- The sentence structure does take some getting use to, especially the first two chapters and I  imagine that it will pose a problem for many readers. 
But this was most predominant in the chapters told by the character Gant. He has a very unusual dialect and it is a bit distracting, but I did grow accustomed to it.

Some examples:
I looked around the boys I'd shared skins and pipes with under the moon those last few weeks.
It was then I took the arrow that'll do for me.
- The story seemed disjointed at times. The flow was interrupted by the different flashbacks.
- There were words used that needed explanations or a better context. I had to read some sentences several times to try and figure out the meaning. A glossary would
  have really came in handy.
- The story is dark and very violent. Some might have a problem with this.
- Multiple POV's. you either like this style of writing or not. I just wanted to let readers know that the story is told by several characters.

- The author created a unique world. The use of plants to make brews, poisons and antidotes was interesting. I liked the different colors of the skin and side effects that occurred
  over time from their usage.
- Multiple POV's. I happen to like this and think it enhanced the story
- The characters of "Kailen's Twenty" were very well written and I enjoyed their background      stories. 
- The battle scenes were very vivid and detailed.  
- It was intriguing reading about the fightbrews that the mercenaries used to aid them in battle. Battles could be won or lost based on who has the better fightbrews.
- The story is dark. I listed this as a "Con" as well. I happen to be a huge fan of dark tales and don't have a problem with the darkness and violence.
- The mystery of the assassin killing off "Kailen's Twenty" was very well done.
- I will not give a spoiler, but there were some twists in the story that I definitely did not see coming. They increased my interest in the story.

I would recommend this story to fantasy lovers who are interested in a unique tale and will read more from this author. I would also caution that the person considering this story
realize that even though the story starts out slow and that the style of writing is not typical, the story gets so much better. I can truly say that with a little patience Snakewood will be worth the read.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Review- Steel, Blood & Fire by Allan Batchelder

I'm not going to write a long review for this story. I will be brief and to the point. This story is amazing! I can't say enough about Tarmun Vykers. I have yet to read about a character of his ilk before. Arune is the perfect sidekick albeit a different kind. The author did a great job with their chemistry. "The End of All Things" is a true villain. He's about as evil as they come. The secondary characters are very well written and greatly enhanced the story. The story started out strong and never lost steam. By the end, I couldn't wait to get the next book in the series.

Pros: well-written characters, magic, mayhem, dark humor, action, an epic battle
Cons: can't think of a single one

Steel, Blood & Fire is one of my new favorite books and I would HIGHLY recommend it.


Monday, February 29, 2016

Review- the Lyre Thief by Jennifer Fallon

I received an e copy from Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

I read this without reading the previous series and I had no problems following along. This story is very well-written and the author does a great job using multiple POV's.  I was very much invested in the characters, especially Charisee and Kiam. The story flowed very well. The scenery is very vivid and detailed.  Political intrigue, a Princess and mother who will do anything to protect her past and her daughters  future, an assassin with a heart of gold, sorcery, demons, switched identities and hints of magic are just some of the interesting themes peppered throughout the pages. 

I would highly recommend The Lyre Thief and will definitely purchase a print copy and look forward to reading more of this authors work.

4.5/5 Stars

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Review- Greylady by Peter Morwood

I received an ecopy of Greylady from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions
are my own.

First, the author created a diverse world and the magical elements are intriguing. The hero and
heroine Bayrd and Eskra are fascinating characters. One minor problem I had was the out-of-nowhere instant relationship between the two. It was a bit distracting. The secondary characters enhanced the story.

Overall, there were highs and lows in the story and moments when I struggled to continue, but by the end of the book, I was invested in the story. I will read the next book in the series because i'm interested in seeing the growth and development of the hero Bayrd ar'Talvlyn.  

Pros: a uniquely created fantasy world, vivid scenery, swords, sorcery and magic
Cons: slow in places and took awhile to build up momentum

3 1/2 stars out of 5 (I would give the first half of Greylady 3 stars and the second half a solid 4 stars.)