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Book review: The Quest – Karina Kantas (@KarinaKantas )

Thya had left it all behind and had a new life on Earth. Part of her wanted to remain, to reviewstay safe. She wanted to have a life with Alex, to be a great mother, to keep him safe. So when the crystal began to glow, warning a Tsinian had come to Earth, the feared the Senx would be close behind. She knew what she had to do, she had to leave, to ensure her son’s safety and that of her people. If one of them was here, it meant there was trouble. In her return she had expected to meet with danger and conflict, not for the battle to already be lost and her people in hiding. Kovon had conquered her home. In order to liberate her people, she must undertake a perilous journey and discover some truths she had never imagined possible. In order to succeed, she must make some difficult decisions and complete the quest put before her. To fail, is lose everything.

The Quest is the second book in Karina Kantas’ Illusional Reality Series. The plot focuses on the trials and difficulties of Thya, and the strength of will, heart, and bonds she has formed. The Quest is written in a compelling third-person narrative which draws you in from the start and refuses to let go. The plot progresses at a steady pace and, whilst it is book 2 in the series, all the required information is presented to ensure it works perfectly as stand alone. Heartache, difficult choices, and revelations are paramount in this journey of self-discovery as Thya attempts to do what is expected of her by her people. Monsters and magic combine with hardships and action to deliver an enjoyable and engaging fantasy.

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Book review: The Ancient Order – JB Michaels

When thirty legionaries and a priest go missing following a request for information on reviewthe Christian God, and this new religion, what is to be done? Simple, you send Magnus, proven and respected warrior, to investigate. His journey leads him to an unsettling discovery, where an impossible show of brute force is just the start of his unsettling discoveries. With the introduction of the new religion by the Romans there are those who hold the old ways close, so close there is nothing they won’t resort to in order to ensure their ways live, even if that means a brutal killing spree of not only those embracing the new ways, but the innocent as well. Something needs to be done to not only protect those of this time, but to aid the generations who will follow.

The Ancient Order is the prequel to the Bud Hutchins Supernatural Thrillers Series. JB Michaels has created this short novella as a means to explain how the Order referenced and integral to the later books in the series is first formed. It fills in the background history, while providing an interesting adventure you can’t help but be pulled into. Conflict, suspicion, and mistrust fill the air as ancient threats rise and a clash between old ways and new seems the only means to obtain a victory. It was great watching the forming of this union, the foundation of what becomes a cornerstone of supernatural protection in the future. I liked the main characters, who were enhanced by those playing a more supporting role. JB Michaels has certainly added another perspective to his later books in the series, and his writing style continues to hold its audience captive.

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Book review: Candlewicke 13 Curse of the McRavens – Milan Sergent (@MilanSergent)

Valor McRaven had a destiny. He had heard whispers of great deeds, being the Knight of reviewNight, during his latest poison recovery. But no one said anything to him, not that they were given the chance. His parent tried their best to keep him separate, and distant from other children by hiding in the shadows. But this choice was taken from him when his family were found guilty and sent to the sanatorium. Things soon turn from bad to worse when evidence against Valor himself is found at the scene of a crime, and whispers about him being the Grim Warlock begin to spread. Will Valor be able to prove his innocence, find the truth behind the death of his twin, and uncover the truth behind the Great Deception. It is a lot of pressure for a young man to bear, but perhaps his unique abilities will allow him to rise to the challenge. One thing is for certain, if he doesn’t discover the truth a fate worse than death awaits him.

Candlewicke 13 Curse of the McRavens is the first book in Milan Sergent’s Candlewicke 13 fantasy series. This is a highly detailed book with attention paid to not only world and character building, but to providing a vast history, complete with myths, legends, fables, and bestiaries. There are different types and understandings of magic, and the views on them are varied. Vivid characters and a constant sense of foreboding drive the reader forward, searching the text for hints and clues as to who is behind the horrendous acts Victor is being accused of. The insertion of images really enhanced the chapters, and I thought the addition of the maps at the end were a great touch. Humour, drama, questions, uncertainty, and tension erupt in a world of magic where anything seems possible. Follow the trail of clues, and discover more hidden truths than you would dare imagine could be concealed.

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Book review: Vazdrag – Daniel J. Strait (@daniel_strait )

Onward the group proceeds through the black door. Onward in their quest and… around reviewin circles? Surely that can’t be right. But that is exactly what is happening. The latest Black Door seems to be a trap, sealing them within a strange labyrinth. Tempers rise and passions stir as they find themselves trapped. But as with all things, this too is a challenge to be overcome, a way to prove themselves of being worthy to journey onward. The Roarrgs possess a ‘magic’ of the likes this motley crew have never witnessed, strange contraptions, and metal ships capable of flight. They appear gracious hosts, but can they be trusted? These beings suggest they can be of help, but their help has a price, a dangerous price.

Daniel J. Strait’s Vazdrag is the third book in the Silver Tears series. Nakiata, Shadow of Thought master, has already gathered two other members of the prophecy, and only two remain. Vazdrag picks up from the point where book two finishes. During their latest adventure, you see a shift in the bonds already formed between the three main characters, Nakiata, Ka’tia, and Dravone, and building tension between them. Daniel J. Strait possesses a very direct tell-style narrative which favours explanations, and focuses on world and character building. From beginning to end you see the characters grow, develop, and evolve, not only with skills but on more personal levels too. I noticed the most alteration in Nakiata, and it is a development I will watch with interest. The direction of this particular instalment has taken a more science-fiction turn, showing the author’s aptitude for cross-genre writing. Action, adventure, trials, and danger await at every turn, along with the hope of new allies, until once more another adventure awaits.

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Book review: Libby Doyle’s The Vengeance Season

Zan knew loving Rainer was dangerous. She had known it for some time. Every time it reviewwas his turn to fight in The Turning she feared he may not come back, especially now Lucifer, Rainer’s father, had upped his game. Long had his father forsaken Balance and embraced only Destruction. He had made it his own and twisted it to his whims, just as he did with everything he wanted. While the warriors remained engaged in The Turning, in an endless perpetual battle, Lucifer had grown stronger, perfecting his weapons, but now came the most fearful weapon of all, and with it he had access to his son’s weakness, to Zan. Zan knew loving Rainer was dangerous, but little did she know she was about to discover just how dangerous it really was. The time has come for change, no more can the endless battle rage on. It is time to end it forever, to take the war to Lucifer himself. Failure is not an option, not with the stakes being what they are. Can the son finally confront the father who tortured and tormented him, while still keeping himself in balance, out of Destructions corruption? He had vowed to give anything for Zan, and now he will.

This book is amazing! I have loved the covalent series since the very first book, and this has really escalated the plot to a whole new level. Father and son are engaged in epic battle with the highest stakes. No human has ever beheld what Zan has seen, the truth and the horror she has witnessed. I love the Libby Doyle’s creative flair and distinct narrative. The graphically and emotionally fulfilling the plot will have you on the edge of your seat as worlds collide in a way they never should have. I loved the growth and strength shown by Zan, she is strong even in weakness. I just couldn’t put this book down. Tense, fulfilling, vivid, and satisfying this action-packed character-driven tale of love, horror, honour, and despair will keep you glued from the first page to the last. Questions are answered, truths unveiled, and rights wrongs. This series is a must-read for anyone who loves a great plot with string vivid characters presented in a flawless manner that never fails to keep the reader engaged. I whole-heartedly give this series my full recommendation.

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Book review: Daniel J. Strait Zondura (@daniel_strait )

Nakiata was a shadow of thought, or SOT, master. Her birthmark linking her to an reviewancient prophecy had seen she became the only female trained in this arte, and she was skilled indeed. Having located and inserted a key for the Black door she and her ally, Dravone, stepped through, entering a new world, and brought the awaiting race of hunters an enemy they had not seen for a very long time, the Morphan, the species Dravone belonged to. Hunted and pursued they flee the castle grounds, and find themselves on a dangerous adventure, uncovering more about the prophecy they seem destined to fulfil.

Zondura is the second book in Daniel J. Strait’s Silver Tears series. The start of the book provides a brief recap of the events of the first, making it easy to pick up from this point in the adventure. Like any overpowered protagonist Nakiata grows increasingly more brutal and less forgiving as the plot goes on, she cuts a path through anything she perceives as a threat, sometimes her actions are excessive, and even her allies begin to worry about her. The writing style focuses on a tell style so it always clear what is occurring, and things are meticulously described leaving complete images in the reader’s mind as the plot progresses. There are some interesting developments and ideas threaded throughout, and some character growth and development that hints as a complex relationship in the future. Unexpected allies, action, and adventure are found within, with the promise of more to come.

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Book review: Sidney Gray – The Ashen Queen

Sofia’s family had not been noble, but because she was born on a specific day she was to reviewbe their future Queen, and their status has risen. Sofia, born to be queen, didn’t feel she was ready for the role, in fact, she didn’t want it. All she had wanted was a normal life, to embrace the spirit of adventure and exploration that had always tore through her veins. But the closer she came to her 18th birthday the more her freedom was restricted. Betrothed to Alex her estranged childhood friend, and trapped in studies, she longs for the life she would have chosen. Fate works in mysterious ways and an old friend returns, taking her into a place she had always feared in order to escape a worse danger, and warn her something was coming, something it falls to her to stop.

The Ashen Queen by Sidney Gray is a gripping fantasy exploring many themes ranging from magic, misunderstandings, fate, and friendship. Sofia, the story’s protagonist is a well developed character with very real emotions, personality, and appropriate reactions and concerns. The characters are vivid and realistic, in fact, there were times I wanted to reach in the pages and slap her mother, she, and some of the other characters, are so well written and explored you will find yourself feeling genuine emotion towards them. This is a slow paced story which focuses on characters and world building before introducing the reader to the main focus of the story, the truth about the banishing and the Ashen, and the coming darkness. It is certainly a good foundation to what looks to be an interesting series.

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book review: Nicholas Rem – Exodus in Blush (@thewritingremmy )

It had only been four years since the Hummingbird’s last slaughter, and now rumours of reviewhis return are circling, cutting through the communities just as his own Blush does through those he wishes to destroy. There was another rumour too, one that states the Hummingbird mutated a select few, turning them into Cardinals, but this is not a rumour everyone agrees with. Just as ‘the truth’ is to be revealed news spreads of the Hummingbird’s return, a return marked by a massacre. Davlacé had been almost peaceful, until the accusation of the Cardinal origin emerges, then one turns rouge massacring all in his path, and starting a change in the people’s view on these gifted ones, that, in line with the Hummingbird return spells trouble, and people will need to unite, even if their short-term objectives differ, they need to uncover the truth, and it may not be what it seems.

Exodus in Blush is Nicholas Rem’s epic fantasy, perhaps with a touch of anime inspiration. It is filled with manipulation, questions, subplots as well as world and character building. It is easy to lose yourself in the world created, where detail is paid to things from commerce to social status and fickle minded opinions. Colourful writing with vivid details help you envision every scene as they unfold and you’ll find yourself eager to unravel the truth behind everything. There are characters you’ll love, motives you’ll question, surprising twists, and enough intrigue to keep you turning the pages. There are many layers and much depth to the book making it bound to satisfy lovers of the genre.

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Book review: Savannah Jezowski – After (@SavannahJez )

Conrad Ellis the Third, or Eli as he was known, was a spook. Spooks assisted the Royal reviewGuard by turning the creepers loose in the Neverway and keeping them outside the city. But Eli had an uncanny sense when it came to them, he could smell the, sense them coming long before anyone else could. He was happy to earn his keep and support his stepfather and brothers. Long had he given up hope on his twin, Roman, obtaining a marker for any of them so they could live a better life deeper in the city. Eli had enough on his plate with supporting the family and hiding the fact he was afflicted, but when the same brother who had abandoned them came calling for a favour he knew he was in trouble. Roman was on assignment but a new injury left him unable to see it through. Failure would mean more than loss of status for Roman, it could cost him his life. How could Eli refuse? but with the hand he had already been dealt, perhaps he should think twice before accepting his brother’s burden too.

After is the first book in Savannah Jezowski’s The Neverway Chronicles series. Within this gripping tale you will find pages of rich and vivid descriptions, and wonderful scene setting. You really start to get a feel for the city and the Neverway, a place filled with creepers who were once the loved ones of those within the city. The characters are not only well developed as individuals, but their relationships have been given due thought and attention making it a real pleasure to read as you get to know about the characters, with small aspects and history revealed through such interactions. There is a very fleshed out feel to the world, and it is a growth I expect would continue in subsequent books. Pick this up of you want to lose yourself in a heart-wrenching tale where things seem to progress from bad to worse, but where glimmers of hope can sometimes light the darkness.

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Book review: C. Wain, A Prayer for the Necromancer

Kaze had been sentenced to death, but his foes, including the High Mage King himself reviewand the resources at his disposal, had greatly underestimated his abilities. Dark magic had been banished from the kingdom along with any who had once practised it, and Kaze’s crime was returning, or at least that was the reason presented. You would think after all he had done a debt would be owed, instead the king has a secret to hide, and seeks to further his own ambitions. Kaze will not forgive the treachery, and vows to expose him, and his dark agenda. There is more to the king and his desires than meets the eye, and the very fate of the land is in jeopardy. A quest so large starts with a mission so simple, to save a life.

The first thing that sprung to mind when reading A Prayer for the Necromancer is that C. Wain has to be a fan of anime, or perhaps has been inspired by some along the way. There is just an air of anime about this book. C. Wain writes in a simple, easy to follow style and introduces enough mystery and subtleties you want to keep exploring the pages. If magic, the supernatural, gods, adversaries, grudges and secrets, presented in an anime-like fashion is what your looking for then this book may be right up your alley. As the first book in the series it does set some good scenes and the characters, whilst sometimes generic, have their own little spark that keeps them interesting.

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