50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Saturday Reviews

Rebirth of the Gangster #6: Dennis by CJ Standal and Juan Romera (Review)

Saturday Review


Genre: Crime, Comic
Publisher: C.J. Standal Productions
Publication Date: June 26, 2017
Format: PDF
Pages: 24
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About the Book

“Meet the Family”, Rebirth of the Gangster’s first story arc, comes to an explosive close!

Sick of being the victim, Marcus finally decides to take matters into his own hands.

Andrea is getting antsy in her role as a trophy wife.

Linda must deal with the fallout of her relapse from the last issue.

Lorena continues her investigation into Hunter, talking to an unexpected informant.

Dennis, an old friend of Hunter’s, gets out on parole and tries to walk the straight and narrow, but faces a fork in the road when he runs into Hunter again.

And Hunter is about to escalate his plans for revenge: there will be no turning back from his actions as someone pays the ultimate price!

My Rating

5 Stars

My Review

I received this comic from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Well damn, this was an entirely different issue than the first five, for sure.

So it is becoming more obvious that Hunter is very dangerous. Whether he is a criminal or not, that boy has vengeance on the mind.

Although this focused on meeting a particular character, Dennis; what stuck out to me the most was how oblivious Marcus is to his new “friend” Hunter. Despite Marcus’ parent’s trying to prevent him from destruction.

Looking forward to more issues!

Where to Buy

Amazon CAN | Amazon US | B&N

About the Author

I love writing in all sorts of playgrounds: Rebirth of the Gangsters  is my first comic book, and I’ve been published by Slant magazine: https://www.slantnews.com/user/cj.standal

You can also find me on Philip Smith’s site promoting indie authors:
http://www.philipsmith.eu/kindle-ebook/rebirth-gangster-meet-family-marcus

I’m also a high school English teacher: next year I’ll be teaching a graphic novel course; in the past, I’ve taught a hip-hop course; and I educate the youth about other valuable things, like Shakespeare.

Thanks,
CJ.

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50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Saturday Reviews

Titanborn by Rhett C. Bruno (Review)

Saturday Review

 
Genre: 
Science Fiction, Thriller
Publisher: Hydra
Publication Date: June 21, 2016
Pages: 201
Format: Mobi
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About the Book

In this gritty and innovative science-fiction thriller in the vein of Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, turmoil on one of Saturn’s moons rattles Earth’s most powerful citizens—and draws one planet-hopping rogue into a fight he never saw coming.

Malcolm Graves lives by two rules: finish the job, and get paid. After thirty years as a collector, chasing bounties and extinguishing rebellions throughout the solar system, Malcolm does what he’s told, takes what he’s earned, and leaves the questions to someone else—especially when it comes to the affairs of offworlders.

But his latest mission doesn’t afford him that luxury. After a high-profile bombing on Earth, the men who sign Malcolm’s paychecks are clamoring for answers. Before he can object, the corporation teams him up with a strange new partner who’s more interested in statistics than instinct and ships them both off to Titan, the disputed moon where humans have been living for centuries. Their assignment is to hunt down a group of extremists: Titanborn dissidents who will go to any length to free their home from the tyranny of Earth.

Heading into hostile territory, Malcolm will have to use everything he’s learned to stay alive. But he soon realizes that the situation on the ground is much more complex than he anticipated . . . and much more personal. (via Goodreads.)

My Rating

4.85 Stars

4 half stars

My Review

I received this eBook from the author in exchange for an honest review.

This, as a total science fiction nerd, was a wonderful mashup Captain Mal and Jayne from Firefly, BladeRunner and a little of Mad Max mushed in to add interest. Especially with Earthian’s surviving after a meteorite strike.

The one thing made very prominent by the storyline is how much the alien species was displaced on Saturn. Ringers, as they were called. Humans had arrived to build colonies and gather gases from the rings of Saturn. In doing so, Humans displaced the alien species already living there and spread their illnesses to the species. The Ringer’s seemed to have a very low immunity to human illness. Which is what happened when settlers encountered the Native American’s.
But also, with the way that the world is going right now, this also struck a cord. The feelings from the immigrants and from the countries accepting immigrants was seen in this novel as well.
I do always enjoy when current events can ring true and loud involving stories.

Malcolm is truly the anti-hero. He is a true bounty hunter and rarely cared about anyone except doing his job and getting paid. Except maybe his daughter, who is considered illegitimate, because she was born outside of a human colony.

Then add in the almost cyborg Zhaff (who is actually human) to the mix and you have an interesting team. Especially with Zhaff’s very to the letter way of doing things and annoying everyone in the vincinity. I was pretty sure Malcolm’s eyeballs were going to roll out of his head. It was truly comedic at times.

But that ending! Come on! Now I need to see where the story goes! Sigh.

Where to Buy

Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

About the Author


Rhett is a Sci-fi/Fantasy author currently living in Stamford, Connecticut. He is represented by Dystel & Goderich out of NYC and his published works include books in the Amazon Bestselling CIRCUIT SERIES (Published by Diversion Books) and TITANBORN SERIES (Random House Hydra). He is also one of the founders of the popular science fiction platform, Sci-Fi Bridge.

Rhett has been writing since he can remember, scribbling down what he thought were epic short stories when he was young to show to his friends and family. When he reached high school he decided to take that a step further and write his first novel. After the encouragement of his favorite English teacher, he decided to self-publish the “Isinda Trilogy” so that the people closest to him could enjoy his early work.

While studying architecture at Syracuse University, he continued to write as much as he could, but finding the time during the brutal curriculum proved difficult. It wasn’t until he was a senior that he decided to finally pursue his passion for Science Fiction. After rededicating himself to reading works of the Science Fiction authors he always loved, (Frank Herbert, Timothy Zahn, Heinlein, etc.) he began writing “The Circuit: Executor Rising”, the first part of a space opera series.

Since then he’s been hired by an Architecture firm in South Norwalk, CT. But that hasn’t stopped him from continuing to work on all of the countless stories bouncing around in his head. He’s also recently earned  a Certificate in Screenwriting from the New School in NYC, in the hopes of one day writing for TV or Video Games.

Connect with Rhett

Website | Goodreads | Twitter

 

50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · Book in exchange for honest review · Curiosity Quills Press

Convergence by J.R. Rain and Matthew S. Cox

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 Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication Date: July 31, 2017
Format: ePub
Pages: 258
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About the Book

Solstice Winters has spent most of her life halfway between normal society and the world of her magical parents. However, when getting caught between two worlds becomes more than metaphorical, being able to summon light or open locks might not be enough.

Neither her love life nor her professional life are going anywhere in a hurry. Her boyfriend is successful and handsome, but she constantly has to compete with his job for affection. At thirty-two, she works as a photojournalist for The Spirtualist, a small paper dedicated to magic and the supernatural―that most people regard as a tabloid. Desperate for that ‘one break,’ she’ll do almost anything to get that big story and get into a ‘real’ media outlet.

Years of always not quite fitting in begin to make sense after an error at a particle physics laboratory alters the dimensional alignment of the world, strengthening magic and revealing an unexpected truth to Solstice.

She’s not even human.

In the wake of an event her boss at the paper is calling The Convergence, magical beings are appearing all over the Earth. Solstice doesn’t hesitate, racing to be the first to capture indisputable evidence of mythical beasts. Alas, being a magical creature herself, she soon winds up in the cross-hairs of not only a three-letter government agency, but an ancient sect of mages with dark intentions.

My Rating

4 Stars

Review

I received this eBook from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Solstice Winters walks between two worlds. The normal world and the magical world her parents brought her up in. Little does she know, she is much closer to that magical world than she ever bargained for. Especially when her cat, Mr. Moody, is as snarky as his name.

J.R. Rain and Matthew S. Cox make a really awesome writing team. The writing was seamless. You honestly wouldn’t know there were two different authors. Clearly, they were on the same track.
Solstice is a great lead character as well. She had a well thought out personality and she had some good lines involving her sense of humour. Especially when the cat started to talk and demand food, at regular intervals, haha. The other supporting characters were well balanced and well written as well.
The only problem I found that this story lacks is world building. While it had great conversational aspects to the story, but a little more focus on the surroundings would have been top notch for the story.

However, I do look forward to more by these two authors and more of Mr. Moody and Solstice.

Where to Buy

Amazon CAN | Amazon US | B&N | Alibris | IndieBound

About the Authors


J.R. Rain is the author of thirty-three mystery, supernatural, and romance novels and five short-story collections.

He’s sold over one million books online. Moon Dance, his supernatural mystery, has been translated into four languages, with audio and film productions pending.

The literary heir to Robert Parker, his novels feature challenging characters, complicated relationships, and page-turning modernist prose. The gritty realism in his mystery novels comes courtesy of years working as a private eye.

A So-Cal native, Rain relocated to an enigmatic and shadowy island outside Seattle.

Connect with J.R.

Curiosity Quills Press | Website | Twitter | Amazon | Facebook


Originally from South Amboy NJ, Matthew has been creating science fiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Since 1996, he has developed the “Divergent Fates” world, in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, The Awakened Series, and the Daughter of Mars series take place.

More recently, he has forayed into young-adult and middle grade novels.

Matthew is an avid gamer, a recovered WoW addict, Gamemaster for two custom systems (Chronicles of Eldrinaath [Fantasy] and Divergent Fates [Sci Fi], and a fan of anime, British humour, and intellectual science fiction that questions the nature of reality, life, and what happens after it.

He is also fond of cats.

Connect with Matthew

Website | Curiosity Quills Press | Twitter 

Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Book Tour · Book Tour Wednesday · Giveaway

The Smallest Thing Blog Tour

Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Publisher: Steel Rose Press
Publication date: July 18th 2017
Pages: 272
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About the Book

The very last thing 17-year-old Emmott Syddall wants is to turn out like her dad. She’s descended from ten generations who never left their dull English village, and there’s no way she’s going to waste a perfectly good life that way. She’s moving to London and she swears she is never coming back.

But when the unexplained deaths of her neighbors force the government to quarantine the village, Em learns what it truly means to be trapped. Now, she must choose. Will she pursue her desire for freedom, at all costs, or do what’s best for the people she loves: her dad, her best friend Deb, and, to her surprise, the mysterious man in the HAZMAT suit?

Inspired by the historical story of the plague village of Eyam, this contemporary tale of friendship, community, and impossible love weaves the horrors of recent news headlines with the intimate details of how it feels to become an adult—and fall in love—in the midst of tragedy.

My Review

4 half stars
I received this eBook from the Tour Organizer and Author in exchange for an honest review.

I loved this. I’m from a small town, so I know that urge to escape and become more than a repeat of history.

Emmott, what a really unique name too! Like all teenagers, she has this grand dream of wanting to break free and spread her wings, much to the disappointment of her father. But as she builds on this plan of going to London and renting her first flat with her boyfriend, an unexpected quarantine locks her in the very village she is trying to escape and destroys all of that. Although she does try to break the quarantine.

In this, she learns about family secrets, how much she loves and respects her father, betrayal, significant loss but despite all that, she also learns about hope and love where she least expected it.

I prolonged this book because I honestly did not want to end. It was a great story and in it, you see Emmott grow and become wiser than her years. I definitely hope to read more by this author.

Where to Buy

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / iBooks

 

About the Author

Lisa Manterfield is the award-winning author of I’m Taking My Eggs and Going Home: How One Woman Dared to Say No to Motherhood. Her work has appeared in The Saturday Evening Post, Los Angeles Times, and Psychology Today. Originally from northern England, she now lives in Southern California with her husband and over-indulged cat. A Strange Companion is her first novel. Learn more at LisaManterfield.com.

Connect with Lisa

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · ARCs · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Curiosity Quills Press

Blood Rush by Laura Diamond

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Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopia
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication Date: May 9, 2017
Pages: 255
Format: ePub
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About the Book

After escaping the long reach of the immortal Vie, seventeen-year-old Justin and human ex-slave Cara must face new challenges in the wilds outside the city wall. Dotted with pockets of hostile Anemie communities, the wilds are just as dangerous as the city. So when Cara is injured, Justin must seek help from the very group he wants to avoid.

On top of that, Alex—who promised to let Justin back in the city when the time was right to rescue his sister, Sammie—gets killed in the final Anemie raid, all televised and hosted by TV personality Vincent Marks. Footage from the explosion plays in Justin’s mind while he tries to balance keeping Cara safe, befriending sharpshooter Sparrow, and winning over the witch healer, Nauro, all while trying to figure out the Anemie leader, Lawton’s, secrets.

Turns out, there’s much more to the Anemies than Justin ever knew. They’ve found a way to trade their drug-like blood to addicted Vie in return for supplies. But the tenuous relationship shatters when Justin’s secret gets out—his blood can age the immortal Vie. It’s the weapon the Anemies’ leader, Lawton, has been waiting for, and he intends to use every last drop.

Lawton forces Justin to join him—or Cara will pay the price. Justin accepts Lawton’s terms, but the move brings Anemies and Vie closer to war.

My Rating

3.85
3 half stars

The Review

I received this eBook from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review.

In Blood Rush, Justin and Cara escape the city with the help of Alex before a mass raid and extermination of Anemie in the city.
Alex encourages them to seek out the freed slave settlement called Prospect, but Justin being Justin, he veers away and refuses to accept his role in the slow downfall of the Vie. This causes him, then, to be captured by Sparrow and her Anemie camp when Cara falls through a trap the camp had set.
This camp is run by an Anemie named Lawton who has grandiose ideas of taking down the Vie. Especially when Lawton finally see’s the video of what Justin’s blood does to the Vie, he is all for taking them down whether Justin wants to or not.

I do feel that the first book was a bit better, however Justin still gets on my nerves. I’m also remarkably surprised, still, that he is only 15! He seems so much more mature than 15. His suspiciousness of Alex certainly ages him.
Although after learning of why Alex is so interested in Sammie and especially in Justin, Justin still managed to get on my nerves. No matter what, trust (even minuscule) goes a long way over consistent paranoia.

Although it was sad, you do find out what happens to Sammie finally. It was one of the best things for the first and second books, to have Sammie being Justin’s main reason for continuing with Alex. There was such an emphasis on the importance of his sister, for both Justin and Alex.

I just hope that Justin, now, begins to trust Alex a bit more in the next book. Although the ending was abrupt and you’re unsure what is going to happen to them all, I do look forward to seeing where Ms. Diamond takes the group.

Where to Buy

Amazon CAN | Amazon US

About the Author

Laura Diamond is a board certified psychiatrist currently specializing in emergency psychiatry. She is also an author of all things young adult—both contemporary and paranormal. An avid fan of sci-fi, fantasy, and anything magical, she thrives on quirk, her lucid dreams, and coffee. When she’s not working or writing, she can be found sniffing books and drinking a latte at the bookstore or at home pondering renovations on her 225 year old fixer upper, all while obeying her feline overlords, of course.

Connect with Laura

Website | Twitter | GoodReads | Facebook

50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Saturday Reviews

Milk Teeth: Stories with Bite by Lizella Prescott

Saturday Review

 
Genre: 
Fantasy, Fairy Tales
Publisher: Hungry Lizard Press
Publication Date: June 7, 2017
Pages: 58
Format: ePub
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2

A sorceress gets married and forgets her powers. A prince fears true love’s kiss. A little mermaid is hungry for something a little strange. A swamp witch takes a messy stand. All of these stories are new takes on classic tales, meandering down unlit paths only fit for monsters, fools, and the brave.

At 58 pages, this collection of 12 bite-sized tales can be consumed in a single sitting. Or read one story each night at bedtime, while you sip a cup of herbal tea.

 

1

5 Stars

my-review

I received this eBook from Book Review 22 in exchange for an honest review. 

I don’t know about you, dear reader, but I absolutely love retellings of fairy tales. Whether they’re full-length retellings or short and … sweet retellings.

The tales in this short book were all familiar tales that we grew up on. Some that have become simple with Disney but others remain in the pages of the more complex Brother’s Grimm Fairy Tales. Either way, they’re familiar. However, they’re not the tales you grew up with. Ms. Prescott gives the Brother’s Grimm a run for their money with her tales of witches planting milk teeth for the future to the Frog Prince who may actually fear True Loves Kiss and a Little Mermaid with interesting tastes. Familiar tales with new twists and incredible imagery!

What I really enjoyed was some of the tales had a more modern spin on them and faced some of the concepts that modern society faces. But at the same time, some stayed within the realms of fantasy.

Definitely try out this book if you are seeking a short read or like the synopsis said, spread it out each night and enjoy the tales.

Where to Buy

Amazon CAN | Amazon US

3


Lizella writes a dark and tasty blend of fantasy, suspense, and experimental short fiction. She’s also partial to epic poetry, Greek mythology, and anything Dystopian. You can read her work here.

When she’s not dreaming up new ways to torture fairy princesses, Lizella writes business journalism under a different pseudonym and tries to keep up with one husband, two kids, and four large dogs.

Connect with Lizella

Medium | GoodReads

 

 

 

50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Curiosity Quills Press · Saturday Reviews

Dawn of the Vie by Laura Diamond

Saturday Review

 
Genre: 
Young Adult, Science Fiction, Fantasy
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication Date: October 3, 2016
Format: ePub
Pages: 276
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1

4 Stars

2

Since their Arrival, immortal alien Vie rule the planet. Enslaved humans are their servants, entertainment, and food. Anemies—humans with various types of anemia—are exterminated. Their nutritionally deficient blood is useless to the Vie. Or so it’s thought…

Alex, an Elite Vie, is part scientist, part Raid Specialist, and part drug addict. He knows Anemie blood is valuable—as a drug. Rather than blindly carrying out his boss’s kill order, he spares a few Anemies, not only for study, but also for his own private stock.

The more Anemie blood Alex drinks, the more he slips into delusion, and the more his double life threatens to crumble. But quitting Anemie blood is not an option. There’s no rehab for his condition.

When Alex tastes Justin’s blood, his hallucinations bleed into reality…

Anemie Justin knows he’s living past his expiration date. It becomes a guarantee when he’s bitten by Alex during a raid and infected with the Vie’s toxin. Alex adds insult to injury by promising Justin a second chance—a cure if he agrees to be a lab rat. And a mule…of his own blood.

The only leverage Justin has is a stake and a serious lack of self-preservation.

GAME ON.

my-review

I received this eBook from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. 

What if vampiric aliens came to Earth, enslaved the healthy human’s and cast out unhealthy humans to the slums? Well if that was to happen, then the future would be this book.

The Vie control everything, including free will and right down to feeding what the author calls “Anemies.”
Healthy humans are the slaves to the Vie. They are their food source and they take care of their homes. The Anemies are humans who have varying degrees of anemia. Clearly the Vie prefer the hemoglobin in the blood of the humans, so the lack of isn’t as appetizing to them.

In comes Justin, an Anemie, and his little sister Sammie who is also an Anemie. They’re hiding in a building to sleep when the Vie conduct a raid and we’re introduce to Alex, an Elite Vie with a taste for Anemie blood. It is a drug to their kind. It becomes obvious why the Vie then raid the Anemie slums, to replenish their drug habits.

Alex takes Justin’s little sister Sammie, after he bites her and challenges Justin to find him. To which Justin happily does and thus finds out that Alex has more of a hand in the care for Anemie and that he has motives for Justin.

What I enjoyed the most about this book was that it was told in a masculine voice. Although Justin is supposed to be 15, I found that his voice was that of someone much older. I would say 18 or 19.
I actually found Justin to be a little grating on the nerves with his constant paranoia. While I understand that the Anemie’s fear the Vie and Justin has a reason to hate Alex, it was just grating how paranoid he was.

Now Alex is the fascinating character. For someone who has everything they could wish for, he develops a guilty conscience. However, what ever his motives are, they remain pretty much unknown. Especially involving Justin’s sister, Sammie.
Sammie remains something that Alex can hold over Justin, so it does make Alex a little iffy.

Sara, Alex’s human slave, became a love interest for Justin. She seemed to be a background character more, at least until the end of the novel. She was mostly just the pretty slave girl. Her personality didn’t really develop until later on. A lot of that was probably because the Vie have the ability to trance their slaves, so that took away their free will to be themselves.

My only wish is that there had been more focus on the scenery. The world building, involving the Vie and the Anemies had been great, but the scenery didn’t really match it. Of course they were building this biodome over the city to block out UV lights, but the city itself wasn’t really described. It would have been nice to see the city itself as well.

However, it will be interesting to see where Justin, Sara and Alex go from here.

where-to-buy

Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Chapters | Barnes & Noble | Alibris | Indie Bound

3

Laura Diamond is a board certified psychiatrist currently specializing in emergency psychiatry. She is also an author of all things young adult—both contemporary and paranormal. An avid fan of sci-fi, fantasy, and anything magical, she thrives on quirk, her lucid dreams, and coffee. When she’s not working or writing, she can be found sniffing books and drinking a latte at the bookstore or at home pondering renovations on her 225 year old fixer upper, all while obeying her feline overlords, of course.

Connect with Laura

Website | Good Reads | Twitter | Facebook

50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · ARCs · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews

ARC Review: Broken Branches by M. Jonathan Lee

ARCReview

 
Genre: 
Gothic Horror, Mystery
Publisher: Hideaway Fall
Expected Publication: July 27, 2017
Format: Paperbook
Pages: 294
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1

4.50 Stars

4 half stars

2

‘Family curses don’t exist. Sure, some families seem to suffer more pain than others, but a curse? An actual curse? I don’t think so.’

A family tragedy was the catalyst for Ian Perkins to return to the isolated cottage with his wife and young son. But now they are back, it seems yet more grief might befall the family.

There is still time to act, but that means Ian must face the uncomfortable truth about his past. And in doing so, he must uncover the truth behind the supposed family curse.

my-review

I received this ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. 

The entire atmosphere of the story, especially involving the tree in the front yard was very creepy. Especially involving that tree in the front yard. It seemed like it had a lot to do with the family’s history but it wasn’t really portrayed that way much. Just that sense. Kind of like in Poltergeist where Robbie was terrified of the tree outside his window. This tree, in the beginning, just seemed to be a large ominous object.

There are two story lines in this tale. It follows Ian Perkins in the present and in his past. This does create a slight disjointed flow but not terribly. Some people struggle with past and present stories, but this worked out to explain Ian’s mother, father and brother as well as Ian’s present story.

While this had elements of horror in it, this was definitely more befitting of a Gothic Horror. It had that lovely sense of suspense and mystery. Especially with Ian.
It was incredibly surreal to participate in the total break down of the main character’s mind. The obvious loss of Ian’s grip on reality. At first you are sympathetic to his feeling of loss with his wife Rachel, but eventually the story reveals that there is more going on here than Rachel just being distant with Ian.

My only major qualm was that the house clearly had a lot of tragedy in the past and it should have been a lot more creepy for that. The curse should have been played up a little more and the ending as well.

Available July 27, 2017

Amazon CAN | Amazon US

3

M. Jonathan Lee is an award winning English author. His debut novel, “The Radio” was nationally shortlisted in The Novel Prize 2012. His second novel, “The Page” went on to become the Amazon #5 most downloaded thriller. His third novel, the critically acclaimed “A Tiny Feeling of Fear” was released in September 2015. “Broken Branches”, his fourth novel, will be released by Hideaway Fall in Spring 2017.

 

Contact M. Jonathan Lee

Website | Facebook | Good Reads | Twitter

 

50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Saturday Reviews

The Reflections of Queen Snow White by David Meredith

Saturday Review

 
Genre: 
Fantasy, Romance, Retelling
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: October 2, 2013
Format: ePub
Pages: 155
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Buy on: AmazonAmazon US

1

3.85 Stars

3 half stars

2

What happens when “happily ever after” has come and gone?

On the eve of her only daughter, Princess Raven’s wedding, an aging Snow White finds it impossible to share in the joyous spirit of the occasion. The ceremony itself promises to be the most glamorous social event of the decade. Snow White’s castle has been meticulously scrubbed, polished and opulently decorated for the celebration. It is already nearly bursting with jubilant guests and merry well-wishers. Prince Edel, Raven’s fiancé, is a fine man from a neighboring kingdom and Snow White’s own domain is prosperous and at peace. Things could not be better, in fact, except for one thing:

The king is dead.

The queen has been in a moribund state of hopeless depression for over a year with no end in sight. It is only when, in a fit of bitter despair, she seeks solitude in the vastness of her own sprawling castle and climbs a long disused and forgotten tower stair that she comes face to face with herself in the very same magic mirror used by her stepmother of old.

It promises her respite in its shimmering depths, but can Snow White trust a device that was so precious to a woman who sought to cause her such irreparable harm? Can she confront the demons of her own difficult past to discover a better future for herself and her family? And finally, can she release her soul-crushing grief and suffocating loneliness to once again discover what “happily ever after” really means?

Only time will tell as she wrestles with her past and is forced to confront The Reflections of Queen Snow White.

my-review

I received this eBook from the author in exchange for an honest review.

You know, I was always one of those kids who wondered what happened AFTER the fairy tale was finished. Did they really live happily ever after? What problems did they encounter in their future? How many kids did they have and so on. I’m really glad when authors take the chance to write a retelling of a fairy tale and add their own spin on it. I enjoyed Queen Snow White from David Meredith’s point of view.

This story definitely tugged on the heart strings though. No shame, lots of feels. I definitely cried with Snow White when she was sifting through her grief with the mirror.

This Snow White was more feminine and naive. She had to learn to be a wife, a Queen and eventually a mother. She had many hiccups and clearly struggled with her title, despite her bringing down her step-mother to attain that title.

I do warn you, this Snow White is in a very deep state of grieving. Despite it being a year since her Prince Charming passed away, she stills mourns his loss. Her grief is overwhelming which might make her seem like a simpering, whiny woman. But from the reflections of her past with her Prince, he was her only stability after her step-mother. That loss of stability can be devastating and understandably so. It is important to try to see it from that aspect as well. Everyone grieves differently.

What shocks me, though, is that this won an award and it had so many grammatical errors. I hope the finished copy is more polished than the one I received. It made it difficult for me to rate this because of that. Especially because I enjoyed the story and grieved along with Snow White when she talked about her past with her husband. I also grieved for the small Princess that suffered so greatly at the hands of her step-mother. That people did nothing to help her, much of that was because they couldn’t. It is definitely a heart string tugging story. I just wish a little more finesse was put into it.

Either way, it was a good story. If you enjoy a good retelling of a fairy tale and enjoy seeing the conclusion of what happens to the Fairy Tale princesses, this is definitely the story for you.

3


David Meredith is a writer and educator originally from Knoxville, Tennessee. He received both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts from East Tennessee State University, in Johnson City, Tennessee as well as a Tennessee State Teaching license. He is currently a doctoral student in Educational Leadership. On and off, he spent nearly a decade, from 1999-2010 teaching English in Northern Japan, but currently lives with his wife and three children in the Nashville Area where he continues to write and teach English.

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50 Books 2017 · 50 Books in a Year · Book in exchange for honest review · Book Reviews · Curiosity Quills Press · Thursday Book Reviews

Dragon Redeemer by Amy Bearce

thursday


Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication Date: May 23, 2017
Format: ePub
Pages: 220
Add to Good Reads

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5 Stars

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Four years have passed since a fairy swarm released the voice of prophecy in Nell Brennan. In that painful moment, a skilled warrior became a reluctant leader and defender of Aluvia’s magic. Now a new enemy threatens their still-fragile lands, one Nell feels powerless to stop even with help from the voice within her.

A mysterious dark alchemist from the Ice-Locked Lands is rising to power on the strength of his sword arm and an ice-breathing dragon obedient to his command. He promises unlimited magic to his followers and death to those who defy him. If he takes over the ports, his corrupt elixirs will disrupt the delicate balance of peace between Aluvia’s people and all magical creatures.

The voice of prophecy sends Nell and her friends to their enemy’s treacherous domain to find a sword of legend. Only the sword’s magic can prevent a return to a world of dying fairies and caged merfolk. But Nell’s up against the toughest foe she’s ever faced. In order to defeat him, she must master the unimaginable power of the sword―and the unwanted magic inside herself.

my-review

I received this eBook from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I have to say, out of all the three books of the world of Aluvia, this is possibly my most favourite.
At first, I wasn’t too keen on Nell, when I read about her in Fairy Keeper. But she really grew up in this book. She embodies everything people look for in a strong heroine. She is strength, determination and while she is a tom-boy by our Earthly standards, her connection with Corbin was lovely to watch.

I love books that go on grand adventures. Instead of the two sister’s this round, it is Nell who has to follow the prophetic voice inside her head to the Ice-Locked Lands in order to save Aluvia from someone trying to steal the land’s magic. This someone is eerily familiar to Nell as well. A reminder of her past where she delved into organized crime to provide for her family.

This is a great trilogy for your kids to grow up with. Especially those who are in middle grade starting with Fairy Keeper. As Sierra, Phoebe and Nell all grow up and learn their paths in life, find their life partners. It is a great timeline for that and each girl is an inspiration.

where-to-buy

Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Barnes & Noble | Indie Bound

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Amy Bearce writes fantasy stories for tweens and teens. Her debut, FAIRY KEEPER, is an upper-middle grade fantasy and is the first book in the World of Aluvia series. MER-CHARMER (World of Aluvia, Book Two) released May 9, 2016. Book Three, Dragon Redeemer, is scheduled for release May 23, 2017. She is a former reading teacher who now has her Masters in Library Science. As an Army kid, she moved eight times before she was eighteen, so she feels especially fortunate to be married to her high school sweetheart. Together they’re raising two daughters and are currently living in Germany, though they’ll be heading home to Texas this summer.

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