Thursday, September 29, 2011

Review: "Remedial Magic" by Jenna Black

"Remedial Magic" (Faeriewalker, #0.5)
by Jenna Black

Genre: Fantasy/Faeries
Reading Grade: Young Adult (short story)
Publishing Type: traditional
Publication Date: December 17, 2010
Source: Kindle store (freebie)
Age Rating: 14+

Having a prodigy for an older brother is not so fun…especially one who is magic wiz-kid. But Kimber has a plan to finally step out of his shadow.

My Review

I immediately took a liking to this short story. It's told from the POV of a fifteen-year-old girl named Kimber, who is a wise-cracking genius college student (already). She is a faerie, but is sorely lacking in the magical abilities department, so this is a source of pain and embarrassment for her. To make matters worse, her older brother of two years, named Ethan, is a phenomenally gifted faerie and attracts plenty of female admires, much to Kimber's chagrin. Well, he steals all her friends away because they are female.

So, Kimber gets this idea to have a faerie tutor come to the house while she thinks no one is home to help her develop her abilities. The tutor is a college freshmen, like herself, but she's eighteen, as most college freshman are. Somehow things go horribly wrong and Ethan shows up only to steal yet another potential friend from Kimber.

The YA voice in this story was spot-on and refreshingly hilarious. I could easily hear Kimber's voice in my head. The drawback is that it is far too short to really convey a complete story. It's more like the beginning of a good story, and maybe some of the middle, but none of the end. So, I can't give it as many stars as I'd like for that. Mostly, the preview to the first Faeriewalker book is there, right afterward, demanding to be read.

I had already purchased Glimmerglass (book 1 of Faeriewalker), before I obtained this title, but I now believe I'll enjoy it, although the protagonist is not the same person. Still, I believe in the author's writing and voice, which are both superb. Recommended for those who simply want a taste of the Faeriewalker series before committing to it.

My score: 4 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Future Reads #9: Dark Seeker by Taryn Browning

Today, I'm blogging about a yet-to-be published book that I'm looking forward to reading. This one happens to be one I already have an ARC of...

Dark Seeker (Dark Seeker, #1) 
by Taryn Browning

Publication Date: October 4, 2011

For 17-year-old Seeker, Janie Grey, ridding the Baltimore streets of the undead is an inherited duty passed down from her Cherokee ancestors. Seeker Training Lesson #1: Never trust the undead. After her father’s tragic death, Janie creates her own life lesson: Love isn’t worth the risk. Both lessons are easy to follow until she encounters the flawed Kai Sterdam. At first, she believes he is the hybrid she is trained to hunt. But, when he has human traits, she determines she doesn’t know what he is. As Janie’s intrigue over who Kai is pushes her deeper into his mysterious past, she discovers a shocking truth that is even more harrowing than the evil they are up against. It’s a secret Kai wants to keep hidden, especially from Janie.

I already reviewed the prequel short story to this novel, "Dark Beauty," so you can read that here (I gave it 4 stars). I really liked the main characters in that one. They had a certain rapport with each other that I found amusing. So, now it's time to get more of the story! 

I'll be interviewing Taryn Browning, the author, next Tuesday on the official book launch day of Dark Seeker, so stay tuned for that.... 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Top Ten Books I Want to Reread (TTT #3)

"Top Ten Tuesday" is a weekly book blogger meme hosted by

This week's list topic is...


Alright! This week's topic is really fun! There's definitely a good number of books I want to reread. I'm sure this a list we can all expand on long after number ten...

1. DEATH NOTE by Tsugumi Ohba (a Japanese manga series)   
This one I actually am currently rereading already! This is one of my favorite mangas, and I'll be gushing over it on my blog as I have planned to review all twelve volumes of it. This story is seriously A-mazing!

2. THE GREYFRIAR (VAMPIRE EMPIRE, #1) by Clay and Susan Griffith 
I only just read this book a couple of months ago and I already want to read it again. I just love the characters and how interesting and larger-than-life they are. I also completely adore the Greyfriar, as well as his romance with Adele, the main character. I read books mostly for the characters, and these guys have stolen my heart.

3. THE IRON KING (IRON FEY, #1) by Julie Kagawa
These next three spots on my queue are going to be dedicated to Julie Kagawa's Iron Fey series, which are so wonderful and magical, I need to keep reading them. I love the characters here, mostly Ash and Puck, and Glitch, too, although he's not in the first book. Again, great characters make the story for me, usually. 

4. THE IRON DAUGHTER (IRON FEY, #2) by Julie Kagawa

5. THE IRON QUEEN (IRON FEY, #3) by Julie Kagawa
This one is particularly epic! Great story and awesome ending...

When do I not want to reread this book? I pretty much always do, as it is one of my favorites. I adore Mr. Darcy (what woman doesn't?) and Mr. Bingley. They are just the most epic fictional men ever, the kind that seem so realistic. Real men could be just like that, right? They totally could, if only they would...

7. FRANKENSTEIN by Mary Shelley
Another huge classic favorite of mine. The detailed description of the monster Victor creates, when he first sees him animated, is some of the best you'll ever read anywhere. It spine-tingling even to this day. I love to hate Victor Frankenstein, so I just can't stop myself from loving this title and needing to reread it.

by Sunao Yoshida
This is a Japanese light novel series. Light novels are not manga, as many people believe. They are actual novels with occasional illustrations here-and-there, but the story doesn't depend on them. This series is my favorite because the characters are simply amazing. You want to hang out with them. The origin story behind the vampires is the most unique I've ever come across, and the main character, Abel Nightroad, is a special type of vampire that feeds off of normal vampire blood. How frickin' cool is that? Love this...

9. "A CHRISTMAS CAROL" by Charles Dickens
Of course, everybody loves this tale, but how many read it? It's something wonderful to read at Christmas time, and not just watch your favorite movie adaptation. Dickens is the best writer to have ever lived, probably. I plan on rereading this story at Christmas time this year.

10. "THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW" by Washington Irving
I haven't read this for quite a long time, so I've been itching to get back to it. I'm excited for the nearing Halloween time of the year, and this is one of the best paranormal stories out there. 

What's on your top ten books you want to reread list?

Monday, September 26, 2011

Review: Beastly by Alex Flinn

by Alex Flinn

Genre: Fairy Tale Re-tellings
Reading Grade: Young Adult
Publishing Type: traditional
Publication Date: December 29, 2009
Source: local library (paperback)
Age Rating: 14+ (for light profanity)

I am a beast. A beast. Not quite wolf or bear, gorilla or dog but a horrible new creature who walks upright—a creature with fangs and claws and hair springing from every pore. I am a monster. 

You think I'm talking fairy tales? No way. The place is New York City. The time is now. It's no deformity, no disease. And I'll stay this way forever—ruined—unless I can break the spell. 

Yes, the spell, the one the witch in my English class cast on me. Why did she turn me into a beast who hides by day and prowls by night? I'll tell you. I'll tell you how I used to be Kyle Kingsbury, the guy you wished you were, with money, perfect looks, and the perfect life. And then, I'll tell you how I became perfectly . . . beastly.

My Review

The book was so much better than the movie! I saw the 2011 film version of the book earlier this year, before reading it, and although the movie was great, the book blew past it by a mile. I suppose doing things in that order had its advantages, in that the characters that remained mostly the same from book to screen adaptation were very easy to envision. But, that only meant I could envision Kyle and Will, maybe Sloane, too. So much was altered and I think that's why the book is superior.

In the book, Kyle turned into an actual bona fide “beast,” not some hairless alien. In fact, having too much hair was one of his biggest problems. I think he was supposed to look similar to the 1992 Disney film version of the Beast. Lindy was not a pretty raven-haired girl who could have any guy she wanted at school. Rather, she was red-haired, freckled, and considered average-looking. And, the truth about Magda, the housekeeper, was one of the best reveals of the story, something that never came up in the film.

I already knew that the Beast was going to get his girl in the end and the curse would be broken, but I wasn't sure if I'd believe that the girl would convince me that she truly loved him, despite his hideous features. Re-writing Beauty and the Beast is tough, if anything, for that reason. I wasn't super convinced by the film version, but, the book made it work. It took nearly one full year from the time Kyle made Lindy live with him before any confessions of love were even made, something much more realistic, even for teenagers.

The author, Alex Flinn, did her research and mapped out this story well (and it shows). I think because Lindy was only sixteen-years-old, young and impressionable, she could be persuaded over time to overlook Kyle's physical condition and learn to love him. He mostly made her life better. And, Kyle went from being downright awful, saying things like, “I tried not to look at her crooked teeth. Why didn't she just get braces?” to changing into an insecure loner who feared rejection from everyone, and could see beauty even in the plainest rose.

When characters grow, I find myself loving them and their story ten times more than if they just bumble along mostly unchanged from beginning to end. But, the trick is that the characters have to go through believable transformations in the story, or they lack credibility. Thankfully, Kyle and Lindy's growth was convincing and paid a marvelous modern homage to one of the most beautiful love stories the world has ever known.

My score: 5 out of 5 stars.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Free E-Book Friday! #2 (9/23/11)

Hey, people! Free books are exciting, right? Well, here are a handful of fantasy e-books I discovered this past week that are totally and completely FREE! Two are short stories and the rest are novels. They are linked directly to the Kindle store on, but each might be free on other e-book store fronts, as well, if you are so inclined...

Have a great weekend, y'all!

This first e-book is one I reviewed on my blog only yesterday. I gave it a raving 5-star review!

"Drop Dead: A Lawson Vampire Bonus Story"
by Jon F. Merz

 Meet Lawson. A cynical, wise-cracking vampire charged with protecting the Balance between vampires and humans, he is part cop, part spy, and part commando -- a James Bond with fangs. Lawson mixes shrewd cunning with unmatched lethality to get his job done. He tries his best to dismantle conspiracies, dispatch bad guys, and live long enough to get home.
This time, Lawson has been given an easy assignment, a “dead drop.” That is until an old enemy returns…

From Within
by John M. Dow
Three strangers find themselves drawn to Wakely, a small village in the Scottish Borders, where a centuries-old conflict between two warring Celtic deities is drawing to its gruesome conclusion. A small boy holds the key to their survival, but first they have to find them. And they're not the only ones looking.


The Emerald Talisman (Talisman, #1)
by Brenda Pandos

To be normal, sixteen-year-old Julia Parker would shed her empathic gift in a second. Life has been difficult since her mother's mysterious disappearance ten years earlier - an event she witnessed, but can't remember. Julia's situation becomes more complicated after a near death experience from a blood thirsty stalker. As high school students go missing it is clear there is a connection to her own experience--past and present. Someone has to stop the madness and a chance encounter with a creepy psychic foretells that only Julia is the key to stopping the madness, but it may require the life of the one she loves.

by Jared Southwick 

When accused of witchcraft, John does the only thing he's ever done"Run! That is, until he meets Jane, who lives in the bleak, imprisoned town of Marysvale. As their love grows, the dangers of Marysvale unfold; and for the first time in his life, John discovers there is something worth dying for. Marysvale is an action-packed story filled with monsters and tyrants, heroes and heroines.

by Rachel Higginson

16 year old Eden Matthews has been in and out of private schools for the last two years. Kingsley is her last chance to finish high school and she is determined to simply do that. But when she meets Kiran Kendrick and her world opens to something she thought only existed in fairy tales, she's unsure what her future will hold. Suddenly she is captivated by a boy who seems to be the source of all of her problems and struggling to rescue her best friend from a foreign prison. When attempts are made on Kiran's life, Eden alone must save him. Thrust into a world that is more make-believe than reality, Eden has to find her own destiny without losing those she loves most. Reckless is an intricate story of mystery, adventure, magic and love. Eden Matthews is an unlikely heroine set on a path to save the world and her loved ones before its too late.

by J. Rock

Andie didn’t know what to make of the numbers.
She started seeing them when she got on the bus that morning. She didn't know what they meant...until she saw them run out...

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Review: "Drop Dead" by Jon F. Merz

"Drop Dead: A Lawson Vampire Bonus Story"
by Jon F. Merz 

Genre: Urban Fantasy/Vampires
Reading Grade: Adult (short story)
Publishing Type: traditional
Publication Date: February 15, 2011
Source: Kindle store freebie (still free)
Age Rating: 17+ (violence & some language)
Amazon |

Meet Lawson. A cynical, wise-cracking vampire charged with protecting the Balance between vampires and humans, he is part cop, part spy, and part commando—a James Bond with fangs. Lawson mixes shrewd cunning with unmatched lethality to get his job done. He tries his best to dismantle conspiracies, dispatch bad guys, and live long enough to get home. 

This time, Lawson has been given an easy assignment, a “dead drop.” That is until an old enemy returns… 

My Review 

Why have I taken so long to get into the Lawson Vampire books? This short story is completely dope-sauce! 

First of all, the writing is superb—exactly what a story like this needs to be written like. This is pure urban fantasy, the kind starring an adult male protagonist, and that requires a certain writing that makes you feel like you're truly inside the head of a guy who marches to the beat of his own drummer. An outlier. But, a really cool guy that is so different from everyone else that you just wanna hang out with him because his life is so dangerous and cool. Merz makes it happen. 

This is exactly the kind of urban fantasy I love to read. For me, it has to star a male character who is an agent of some sort of organization (or a mercenary guy on his own). He has to have so much swagger that he creams you with it from a mile away. Here, the swagger mostly comes from the story itself and the epic writing. From what I can tell, Lawson has swagger, but I couldn't tell so much because most of the story takes place during a flashback to the 1960's when he was younger and less confident. 

That part of the story sets up what happens in the present and it's just cool, for lack of a better word. The action is so in-your-face and extreme, it reads sort of like watching The Bourne Identity movie. And, even the villain is epic and truly thinks deeply like a villain. I love me an epic villain. I'm amazed all these elements are packed into such a short story that literally takes a half hour to read from beginning to end. 

Needless to say, I can't wait to read my copy of the Lawson novel that follows, The Kensei. I've finally found my dream urban fantasy novel series. I hope the TV adaptation hits the airwaves soon... 

My score: 5 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Blog Tour: Weaving Destiny Review + Giveaway

Today, I'm happy to be hosting a tour stop for the "Weaving Destiny Blog Tour," in honor of the release of G.P. Ching's sequel to The Soulkeepers, Weaving Destiny. I have a full review of the book ready below, but first there's an opportunity for readers to enter a giveaway hosted by G.P. on her blog for a chance to win your choice of a Kindle, or Nook e-reader!

Just hop on over to her blog (here) and answers the questions in the form and you'll be entered. The giveaway is open to everyone until Monday, September 26th. Good luck to you all, and enjoy  The Soulkeepers series!

Weaving Destiny (The Soulkeepers, #2)
by G.P. Ching

Genre: Fantasy
Reading Grade: Young Adult
Publishing Type: self-published
Publication Date: September 6, 2011
Source: eARC from author
Age Rating: 15+ (for some profanity)

Malini Gupta thought Jacob Lau was her destiny. But after months of failing to decipher how she fits into the Soulkeepers, frustration threatens to tear their relationship apart. And it doesn't help that a new Soulkeeper named Mara is ready to stop time itself to earn Jacob's love.

When Malini faces her worst fears, and even death, she learns a funny thing about destiny. Fate is a tapestry of choices, and she has the power to weave hers.

My Review

First off, if you haven't already read my review for the first The Soulkeepers book in this series, feel free to do so now (by clicking here). Compared to the first book, Weaving Destiny is definitely an evolution. I always felt like there was one unidentifiable, gnawing thing missing from the first, but it is rectified in Weaving Destiny. The writing is much better, the story-telling even more intricate and clever, and the characters seem even more realistic and likable.

This volume focuses on Malini Gupta, the title character, Jacob Lau's, girlfriend. I always liked Malini from book one, but I really didn't get the chance to come to love her as much as I do now, after getting inside her head and heart. What a neat girl she is! She has so much thrust upon her and simply doesn't feel like all the other Soulkeepers, that she's ready to do battle. She's not. It's a feeling so easy to relate to because, who would feel ready for that kind of life, being a normal person?

One of the pervasive themes of the story, I suppose for the entire series—but here it's really upfront—is the concept of 'destiny.' Obviously, its title is appropriate, because Malini begins the story believing, like so many young people do (I know I did!), that destiny is made for you by some cosmic force in the universe, and no one can do anything about it. We have to hope for the best and that's that.

But, what inevitably comes with age, maturity, and life experience is what Malini discovers through her trials: that she is, in fact, subject to destiny, but she is, in fact, the weaver of that destiny. I love how this theme is interwoven throughout, and her understanding of this concept is gradually obtained. She realizes she always had the power to shape her own future, and that pertains to everyone who's reading about her, too.

Read this if you want a sophisticated story with complex, real-world themes wrapped up in beautiful fantasy elements that is sure to entertain you. Think of it as the most delicious, wholesome, home-cooked meal prepared for you by a seasoned expert: savory, satisfying, and nourishing all at the same time.

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

My score: 5 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Top Ten Books Everyone Has Read But Me (TTT #2)

"Top Ten Tuesday" is a weekly book blogger meme hosted by

This week's list topic is 


Well, this one is super appropriate for me, since I constantly feel like I'm failing to keep up with the Book-Jones's. Here it goes...

Yep... I'm the only schmoe on this planet who has yet to read a single Harry Potter book. I was in college when the first book came out, so I can hardly say I just simply read them when I was a child. I didn't have any interest in reading a book for kids. But, I plan on reading it soon enough, anyway. 

Again, I'm sure I'm alone in this category, too, in that I've never read a single word written by the legendary Stephen King. And, I'm not sure I want to. Never been a fan of pure horror fiction, but I hear he writes other genres these days...


More children's books for people of all ages, but rarely do I love children's books that were written after I already left behind my childhood. But, everybody's reading these books, even if they have gray hair.

4. ERAGON (INHERITANCE, #1) by Christopher Paolini 
I actually bought this book in hardcover right after it came out how ever many years ago that was (I forget). I read the first few chapters, then just put it down. Then, some time later, I sold it off to get rid of it. It didn't end up appealing to me, although I probably should have given it another chance, I admit.

5. 1984 by George Orwell
I have never read this classic dystopian novel, I'm ashamed to say. It never ended up on a syllabus of a class I took in school and I just never sat down to read it on my own. I feel rather silly for that now, since everyone has read this at least once. 

6. ENDER'S GAME (ENDER'S SAGA, #1) by Orson Scott Card
Here's one I really wish to read soon because I haven't ever read it before. I've never read any of Card's novels, but I'm not a big sci-fi buff, anyway. 

This book series is now a popular American TV series, of which I've never watched before, either. I do love vampires, but does that mean I have to read this series? I don't even like Twilight.

I'm not sure I really want to read this book. I love vampires, but mix it with too much teen angst and I'm likely to want to exchange the book for a textbook on astrophysics just to bleach it of all emotions. Vampire Academy... do I even want to go there?

I actually bought this book on an impulse while shopping at Walmart one evening, but I wonder if I should have. I'm not into thrillers too much, but since it's such a popular adult title right now, I thought I'd see what all the hype is about.

I ordered this last September right after it came out, but have yet to read it (although, I plan to start it next week!). It has become pretty popular since then, and I have read City of Bones, but I really hope I like this other Cassie Clare series better. Her writing has improved since then, right?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Review: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1)
by Cassandra Clare 

Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal
Reading Grade: Young Adult
Publishing Type: traditional
Publication Date: March 27, 2007
Source: local library (Audio CD)
Age Rating: 14+ (for some profanity)

When 15-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder -- much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing -- not even a smear of blood -- to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy? 

This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother?And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know...

My Review

I had been meaning to read the first book in this series for quite a while now, but was afraid I wouldn't like it. I finally decided to check it out in Audio CD format from my local public library. That way, there would be no commitment to a bothersome read, nor any money wasted. But, I ended up liking this book, regardless.

The characters (most of them, actually) are very interesting, and I think what makes this book successful has something to do with how the characters interact with each other. Never a dull moment. It's like watching a houseful of people who can't stop being brutally honest every time they open their mouths to speak to one another! That does create plenty of conflict so, as the observer, you just wanna kick back, pop some popcorn, and watch the kiddies have at each other.

Also, the world of The Mortal Instruments is really interesting, if not downright cool. Clare's description is very detailed, making it easy to conjure up images of the New York gothic cathedrals and abandoned buildings bricked up everywhere. Without needing to overdo it, she even manages to get you to see exactly what the paranormal characters are wearing and how different the style is from just normal everyday human attire.

I don't feel the technical writing is very good, though. Too many adverbs that make some passages clunky and lazy, at best. But, everything else about the writing shines, particularly the use of description. Best of all, the young adult voice sings loud and clear. It does seem like something not particularly sophisticated as a piece of literature, but this is part of what makes it work in portraying a proper teen voice. I think this is why actual teen readers are reading these books like they're going out of style (which they are not). They don't have to read something hard for them to mentally process, because most teenagers would rather play video games, or watch YouTube than read a book.

This is great fiction for middle-to-older aged teens who want to read something that, yes, is long, but will immerse them in a fascinating world, and keep them engaged from beginning to end without having to strain their brains for something only meant to be entertaining.

My score: 3.5 stars ouf of 5.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Free E-Book Friday! #1 (9/16/11)

I've decided to do a post of the free e-books I've been able to find and point them out to my followers, just in case you all might want to download them for yourselves. I might actually be able to do this every Friday, but I can't be sure about that, yet.

These are fantasy/paranormal novels, or short stories, that I might not have read, but they are of interest to me. I probably will only post about the free e-books that I'm interested in reading...

The Soulkeepers (The Soulkeepers, #1)
by G.P. Ching
This is still free over at

When fifteen-year-old Jacob Lau is pulled from the crumpled remains of his mother's car, no one can explain why he was driving or why the police can't find his mother's body. Made a ward of his uncle and thousands of miles from home, a beautiful and mysterious neighbor offers to use her unique abilities to help him find his mom. In exchange, she requires Jacob to train as a Soulkeeper, a warrior charged with protecting human souls.

He agrees to her demands, desperate for any clue to the mystery of his mother's disappearance. But soon Jacob finds himself trapped in a web of half-truths, and questions her motives for helping him.

Demon Girl (The Rae Wilder Wilder Novels, #1)
by Penelope Fletcher

Rae Wilder has problems.... Supernatural creatures swarm the earth, and humanity is on the brink of extinction. Stalked by a handsome fairy who claims she is like him, demonkind, Rae thinks maybe it was a mistake breaking the rules by going over the Wall into demon territory. Plunged into a world of dark magics, fierce creatures, and ritual sacrifice, she is charged with a guarding a magical amulet. The changes to her mind and body are startling, but rather than accept her purpose she struggles against who she is destined to be. Throw in a big lust for a vampire who can't keep his hands off her, and life starts to get complicated. Rae is forced to make the ultimate choice: to live and die human, or embrace her birth-right and wield magics that could turn her into something wicked, a force of nature nothing can control.

Into the Shadows (Into the Shadows, #1)
by Karly Kirkpatrick 

Paivi Anderson has it all: friends, a spot on the varsity basketball team, wonderful parents, and quite possibly, her first boyfriend. It was everything a freshman in high school could ask for. 

Her perfect life begins to crumble when she discovers her name on a list distributed by a power-hungry presidential candidate. How could anyone think of Paivi as an Enemy of the State? Could it be because of her special powers? No one was supposed to know about them, but the mysterious messages in her tater tots say otherwise. 

In Into the Shadows, Paivi quickly learns who her friends are and is forced into a reality she didn't see coming.

Rumpel, a retelling of the Brother's Grimm Rumpelstiltskin
by Eileen Cruz Coleman 

RUMPEL is the dark and quirky retelling of the Brothers Grimm Rumpelstiltskin. When foreigners arrive on an island beach in search of a lost spinning wheel which they believe rightfully belongs to them and on which their very existence depends, the island inhabitants—spirits, trolls, mermaids, fallen angels and humans—are thrust into a course of events during which some will become allies and others will turn against their own and seventeen-year-old Elizabeth Miller must defend her unborn child from a vengeful troll, Rumpel, while also struggling to accept that she is the reason why eighteen-year-old Prince Alarick, a fallen angel, chose to give up a chance at redemption.

"Mutiny" (Mystyx, #2.5)
by Artist Arthur 

What did I do to end up in this nightmare?

One minute Franklin Bryant is a normal teenager in school with his girlfriend, Krystal. The next, a reaper leaves him in Trance, the place between worlds where his destiny will be decided. Franklin has been summoned by the demon Charon to help destroy the Mystyx, a group of classmates including Krystal, with supernatural powers that can defeat Charon. 

Franklin loves Krystal, but he faces an impossible choice: join Charon and be rewarded with powers beyond his dreams, or refuse and die....

Amazon often has promos available for ebooks.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Review: "Flash Gold" by Lindsay Buroker

"Flash Gold" (The Flash Gold Chronicles, #1)
by Lindsay Buroker

Genre: Steampunk
Reading Grade: Adult (short story/novella)
Publishing Type: self-published
Publication Date: March 29, 2011
Source: freebie
Age Rating: 14+

Eighteen-year-old Kali McAlister enters her steam-powered "dogless sled" in a race, intending to win the thousand-dollar prize and escape remote Moose Hollow forever. The problem? Fortune seekers and airship pirates are after her for the secret to flash gold, her late father's alchemical masterpiece.

With her modified rifle and a pocketful of home-made smoke bombs, Kali wouldn't normally hide from a confrontation, but taking on a whole airship single-handedly is a daunting task. Unfortunately, the other racers won't assist her—they're too busy scheming ways to sabotage her unorthodox sled.

When a sword-slinging stranger shows up, wanting to hire on as her protector, she's sure he has ulterior motives, but he's the only one interested in helping her. The question is...why? 

My Review

This series is not exactly fantasy, as it is more true-blue “steampunk,” a sub-genre of science fiction. But, I decided to make an exception for Lindsay Buroker's Flash Gold series because I genuinely love the amazing characters, fabulous writing, and awesome story-telling. For the record, I read and review steampunk here regularly, any way (but, it usually has fantasy elements).

This short story is awesome! I completely loved it. It's a great steampunk read, as my interests in that genre are growing more and more these days. "Flash Gold" has such an endearing quality going for it, I couldn't help but love it. Although a bit light on the details of the steampunk technology, it is so strong on story and character, you just don't really miss it.

The plot is perfectly paced and there is plenty of dangerous action going on. But, the best thing about the story is its amazing characters. They are so funny and unique. Kali, the main character is my favorite and she's a little spitfire. I love how stern and independent she is at only 18-years-old (but, she is living in the 19th century, so...). Because she's kind of odd, she's easy for me to relate to. Cedar, the sexy, uber-manly, mysterious stranger that tags along with her on her race, is a great contrast to her, being one to talk less and do more. They make a great team and butt heads a lot in the most endearing way.

I couldn't help but think of True Grit as I got into this story, as Kali kind of reminds me of Mattie a little bit. I definitely want more of this story and of Kali and Cedar, since the story is left with a brand new adventure about to begin for Kali. I want to know what's going to happen next. Luckily, “Flash Gold” has a sequel titled, “Hunted,” and it's already out in ebook format. This novella easily gets five stars from me!

My score: 5 out of 5 stars.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...