Book review: Embellished by Karen Glista

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Travis is a gamer, he and his friends are battling the evil forces plaguing Orian. But their review imagehealer abandons them, leaving them a man down. Desperate for the rare drop Travis turns to his sister, Bekka for aid. Unaware her participation will forever change her life. Bekka rarely leaves her room, suffering form the all-consuming illness which claimed the life of their mother and will soon claim her. But fate has other plans. As the boss falls the small group are being ravished by a storm, then the unexpected happens, they are forced into the  game. But that is not all, each one of them is reset to full health. Bekka relishes in her new lease of life, but soon they come to learn the dangers of this world are as intense as those of the game itself. Without weapons or skill they fall prey to their surroundings, when all seem loss hope arrives, offering salvation. But if Bekka wants to protect those she loves from harm she must pay the price.

Embellished starts with a small group of people being drawn into a fantasy world, and I must say the same was true for me. I was hooked, I found this book difficult to put down and found myself heading to bed earlier and earlier just to have a little extra reading time. It is a tale of fantasy and romance, Bekka must choose between the price who promised her friends safety, and the Vadarc who abducts and claims her as his property. The choice is difficult, should Bekka follow her heart and risk and all consuming war where thousands, maybe millions will die, or does she act in the interest of the people of this strange new world? I loved this book, Those who read my reviews know such is not a phrase I utter lightly, maybe it is the gamer in me, maybe the fantasy/ romance lover, but there was a charm to this book I just couldn’t ignore. Filled with love, suspense, war, epic battles, and difficult choices with characters who both capture your heart and your hatred. Book two is already on my Kindle.

This is a book I would, without hesitation, recommend.

I read this on KU but I have also purchased it along with the next book in the series.

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Book review: Finding Forever by Amanda J Evans

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Liz, had her fair share of problems growing up, events that gnawed at her confidence, review imageleft her questioning her own value. So when she met, and married, Charles, a man intent on loving her, helping her grow, she couldn’t have been happier. But the happily ever after was cut short before it even begins. Washed ashore following a tragic accident, wearing the tattered remains of her wedding dress, Liz as wakens holding the hand of her husband, his cold, lifeless hand. Her world begins to crumble, nothing makes sense. She just needs someone to believe her, but when they do they uncover a horrific truth. Start the clock, because time is running out. Liz must become more than she ever thought she could be if she wishes to discover what really became of Charles, before it is too late.

Brilliant. An engaging and well-written romantic suspense with more than a few twists. It is certainly a book that will keep you turning the pages. Written in alternating first person perspective from Liz and Charles’ viewpoint (with a special devational reward at the end) Amanda J Evans has no difficulty portraying the two unique personalities of her leading characters, as well as using them as tools to give depth and development to the rest of the cast. A brilliant debut novel from a clearly talented author.

I initially read this on KU but picked up a copy to keep as well

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Finding Forever

Book review: Crown of Delusion by Tanor Costa

Forced to flee their kingdom kingdoms​ after Amar the Storm commits regicide, Faulkner, review imageSar, and Eloy are afforded little peace. Sar and Eloy are the nephews of the King, the last living people to bear the Hamen name.  Guided by Faulkner, a fire mage, they are convinced the only course of action is to spur a rebellion. In order to face Amar they must amass an army which would not only surpass, but be able to defeat, the King’s. But Amar already has the alliance of the people, the Phantom islands, not to mention his incredibly powerful generals and King’s Guard, and the heroes have but a name and a once disgraced knight who joins their plight.  Amar, still intending to purge the Hamen line from existence, and turns the accusations of their uncle’s murder towards them Amar will use any means at his disposal to ensure their quest to build an army fails, and he has much, and many, he can exploit.
A tale of war and tragedy,  honour and betrayal. Tanor Costa writes a gripping story. It is a book of war, and there is no shortage of conflict and challenges. The main characters are forced to grow and develop as fate, and Amar’s actions, guide their course. It is no easy journey. Tanor Costa writes fast paced, action packed scenes with skill, and keeps the quest of amassing an army an interesting one. And yet, there is more, within the plot is another story, the tale of something to be.
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Book review: The Cracked Amulet by R B Watkinson

Wefan is a powerful force. It is a thread of energy, and for those with born with Wealdan review imagerunning through their veins a force which can be manipulated. But gifts are not the only thing that come with such power. There is a religious order known as the blood priests who seek the return of Murak, and consuming the blood of those with Wealdan gives them unimaginable strength, bringing them ever closer to their goal of plunging the world into oppression and war.

The Cracked Amulet follows the trials of Coryn and Katleya as they try to fulfil their purposes, without falling prey to those who hunt them. It has some brilliant scenes, drawing a reader’s focus, and the politics and world setting are well explained. The first part of the book is slower paced than the second half, and there are events that will leave you thinking. The two protagonists grow and develop throughout, and there are some interesting twists. It was a good read, obviously a lot of consideration was put into the creation of the world, and the plot itself.
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Book Review: The Shadow Watcher by Roari Benjamin

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Sam had a simple life, dreams, love, passions, and a secret watcher. She had been aware 51LzAofuvpLof him for some time, glimpses of him in the shadows. A strange figure, present from the time of her father’s death, and never aging. He is always there, watching her, protecting her from harm and with just cause. There are people who would seek to use her, to use a knowledge she has not yet even found, to their own gains. Sam is the keeper of the Fountain of Youth, although it doesn’t go by that name. Those who eat its fruit never age, some fear its secret was lost with the death of her father, others know that she is the key to finding it. In the wrong hands this could spell disaster, but without knowledge of this secret life, of friends, foes, and secret societies, how can she know who to trust?
A while ago I picked up the second book in this series and have been promising myself I would backtrack to the first. I’m really glad I did. Here we meet Sam for the first time, gain insight into her life, her thoughts, and the problems she faces. I found it wonderful to reconnect with some of the characters, giving me an appreciation for how they have grown and developed throughout the books I have had the pleasure of reading. It also made me appreciate the depth of intricacies that are woven throughout the first and second books. Roari Benjamin has a wonderful, immersive writing style, and imaginative ideas which she expresses in a fantastic manner. I am looking forward to reading more of her work in the future.
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Book review: The Trojan Project by Eileen Thornton

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Sarah was born and raised in London, she had her pick from men of fine standing, so 51LzAofuvpLwhen Pete, a farmer, swept her off her feet in a whirlwind romance, some people were less than impressed. And some of Pete’s friends were less than pleased with his choice of wife. But none of that matters now. Strange lights and mist heralded a danger never imagined. With her husband is missing, and the terrible aftereffects witnessed, she has no choice but to take her children and flee, praying her husband is safe, but fearing the worst.  Someone wants to cover up the truth. Sarah and her children are forced to flee in fear of their lives. The military are closing in,with one simple instructions, the truth cannot get out. No one can know what happened.

A thrilling and suspenseful tale written in an engrossing narrative. If you’re looking for conspiracy, twists, and dark themes then this book will be sure to grab your attention​ while developing a cast  of interesting characters.
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Book review: More things in Heaven and Earth by E.A. Comiskey

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Simone had struggled to ignore the voices for so long, they had once driven her to the 51LzAofuvpLbrink of madness. If not for Michael, her loving husband, she would have long been lost to the inaudible chattered. He helped her to focus, to push back the deafening noise to a more bearable level. She never would have imagined what she heard to be so important, the herald of a new and coming age. The veil drawn between worlds, for better or worse, is coming down, and Simone has been gifted with the ability to hear those from the other sides. A skill she must embrace if she is to save all the universes.
I don’t read a lot of Christian fiction, but this is what I imagine to be a brilliant example of the genre. Well-written, with a plot that highlights the apathy and sins of man, as well as their potential for good, and the far spanning reaches of this goodness. The author includes figures from other religions, legends, and beliefs in a well-handled manner. It is a book that will make you think, and even reflect on your own attitudes and actions. The author shows great imagination with the alteration of creation myths to encompass multiple planes and realms, each different and unique. The overall message, for me at least, was one of love, and the power even simple actions can generate in an outward ripple effect that touches everything around.
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Book review: The Slave Girl by Jennifer Stone

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Taya, broken, bloody and abused escapes the beating from her master’s wife after being 51LzAofuvpLforced into his bed. With no home, no money, and a sullied reputation, there are few who would lend her aid, and so, she returns to a home she once knew, a temple. They nursed her back to health and sent her on her way. Free for the first time Taya must now journey to find work, but the path before her is anything but easy, and far from what was expected.

The Gods are angry, their worship shunned for centuries by the removal of their tales until but two God’s remain in thought. All is not well in their realm, Galia has had enough, it is time to act, humanity will either redeem itself or be destroyed. It appears Taya may be the key, the prophesied orphan who could bring about salvation or damnation. But there are those who would oppose her, wishing her to fail for the sake of their own power.
I really enjoyed The Slave girl. Jennifer Stone creates a strong and developed protagonist impossible not to sympathise with, and a deep and interesting world. Written in the third personal narrative, description and world building are done in  such a manner that the reader can build their own image from the descriptions given. Friendship, betrayal, ancient prophecies, and angered gods, this is one story you can’t help but become invested in. I look forward to book two.
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Book Review: Ancient Evil by Brent J. Griffiths

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Ancient Evil by Brent J. Griffiths is very unique is design, it could be viewed as three 51LzAofuvpLseparate stories if not for the fact they are woven together and integral to the larger picture.

Hael shows a promise beyond those of his peers, even those older, and more experienced, than him. For this reason this member of the Guest, the people who owe an un-payable Debt to the Host, is being watched. They believe he is the one they seek in order to ensure their plans fall into place. His power of compulsion is beyond that of even some of the Hosts, a feat thought impossible. He is destined for greatness, but the more he sees, the more he is made to question. His people, the Guest, have been fighting a war against the Ferals for over five-thousand years presided over by the Host, and they have been using any means at the disposal, even the converting of Guest criminals to forced enslavement, stripping them of will and self, before seding them forefront in battle alongside the Guest who work towards paying off The Debt.
Finn, is what some would call a genius, entering university at thirteen, and obtaining multiple degrees. He has studied Maths, Physics, and now finds himself drawn to Parapsychology and, for the first time, a girl, Rebecca. He helps conduct studies aimed at proving psychic abilities exist, but while doing so he stumbled upon a conspiracy, one which will shape the path of both their futures.
I really enjoyed reading Ancient Evil, the plot is divided into the focal of three characters across different times in their life. If I were to favor a time, it would be that of Hael, but only because I really enjoy well-written high fantasy. The other aspects are just as brilliant, but occur in a modern day setting. The combination was well-done, and the meshing of the plots was well-executed. As a reader you will find twists aplenty, real and fallible characters, and an engrossing, involving read packed with action, mystery, and intrigue. I look forward to reading the second book in this series Brent J Griffith’s has written a strong debut novel for this series, and I can see myself becoming hooked.
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Book review: Snarkey & Putts: Paranormal Attorneys-At-Law by Joe Eliseon

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Jack Snarkey and Andrew Putts are law firm partners. Putts the down trodden partner, is 51LzAofuvpLin kept in place by the constant threat of the operating agreement, which he has never actually seen. He fights his battles, and always comes out the underdog when compared to the massive income of Snarkey, but things are about to change. He has a six figure account, and the arbitrator is just about to call judgement. Or he was. Poor Putts seems flat out of luck, and probably broke to boot. The arbitrator dies before revealing his final judgement. But Snarkey has a plan, a way to cash in without starting the drawn out process again. To settle this account he convinces Putts he must, under encouragement and manipulation, reach into realms unseen in the world of law, pierce the veil and deliver the intended will of the one whose will has been contested. But unbeknown to any of them, there is more to this than a simple ruse, and Putts unlocks a potential he never knew slept within him.

I really enjoyed reading Snarkey and Putts, the characters are entertaining, and the plot is well delivered. This is certainly a strong book in what I anticipate will become an ongoing series. It brings a lighter side to the law, and presents characters so contrasting to each other it creates for a great, and tense, environment. I will certainly be keeping my eye out for the next installment. I can’t wait to see how this will pan out, will Putts finally take his place as an equal partner, rather than his partner’s doormat? We’ll just have to wait and see.

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Snarkey & Putts: Paranormal Attorneys-At-Law