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Sunday, 5 August 2018

THE SKULL THRONE


The Book

The Skull Throne by Peter Brett
Book 4 in The Demon Cycle series
Read by Colin Mace
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobook


About The Skull Throne:
The first three novels in New York Times bestselling author Peter V. Brett’s groundbreaking Demon Cycle series -- The Warded Man, The Desert Spear, and The Daylight War -- set a new standard for heroic fantasy. The powerful saga of humans winnowed to the brink of extinction by night-stalking demons, and the survivors who fight back, has kept readers breathless as they eagerly turned the pages. Now the thrilling fourth volume, The Skull Throne, raises the stakes as it carries the action in shocking new directions.

The Skull Throne of Krasia stands empty.

Built from the skulls of fallen generals and demon princes, it is a seat of honor and ancient, powerful magic, keeping the demon corelings at bay. From atop the throne, Ahmann Jardir was meant to conquer the known world, forging its isolated peoples into a unified army to rise up and end the demon war once and for all. But Arlen Bales, the Warded Man, stood against this course, challenging Jardir to a duel he could not in honor refuse. Rather than risk defeat, Arlen cast them both from a precipice, leaving the world without a savior, and opening a struggle for succession that threatens to tear the Free Cities of Thesa apart.

In the south, Inevera, Jardir’s first wife, must find a way to keep their sons from killing each other and plunging their people into civil war as they strive for glory enough to make a claim on the throne.

In the north, Leesha Paper and Rojer Inn struggle to forge an alliance between the duchies of Angiers and Miln against the Krasians before it is too late.

Caught in the crossfire is the duchy of Lakton -- rich and unprotected, ripe for conquest.

All the while, the corelings have been growing stronger, and without Arlen and Jardir there may be none strong enough to stop them. Only Renna Bales may know more about the fate of the missing men, but she, too, has disappeared...
Source: Info in the About The Skull Throne was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13630171-the-skull-throne on 20/03/2016.

Review

My Thoughts:
The world building is nice, but that is not it's most prominent feature. It is woven in such a way that it hooks into your brain sneaky-like and you find yourself craving to read more of the world in odd moments. It encroaches into your real life. It is addictive. So if you are masochistic like that, just plod through Book 2 and Book 3 and you'll get here.

The writing style still has multiple threads but now the author writes them in bigger chunks and therefore is a whole lot less annoying. And I like that very much!

The Skull Throne still ends with a cliffhanger, but then, we already knew that going in. What makes it insidious is that, it seemingly ends in mid-chapter and The Core starts straight where it ends. Starts mid-chapter. Same sentence. Real stealthy! So my advise is, don't start reading The Skull Throne until you have The Core in your hands too.

I actually bought The Skull Throne when it first came out, like a year before The Core, and stopped reading about three quarters into the book because I knew it was going to end in a cliffie. Another incentive for me to stop reading there was that a favourite character died and it took me a good year to grieve him before I could continue on reading in this world again. It was that much of a shock.


Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4.5
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 4
Writing Style = 4
Ending = 3.5
World building = 5
Cover art = 4
Pace = 4
Plot = 3
Narration = 4.5

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 cherries



The Author
Peter V. Brett
Raised on a steady diet of fantasy novels, comic books, and Dungeons & Dragons, Peter V. Brett (“Peat” to his friends) has been writing fantasy stories for as long as he can remember. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and Art History from the University at Buffalo in 1995, and then spent over a decade in pharmaceutical publishing before returning to his bliss. He lives in Brooklyn.


Books in The Demon Cycle series:
Book 1: THE WARDED MAN Book 1.5: BRAYAN'S GOLD Book 1.6: THE GREAT BAZAAR AND OTHER STORIES Book 2: THE DESERT SPEAR Book 3: THE DAYLIGHT WAR Book 3.5: MESSENGER'S LEGACY Book 4: THE SKULL THRONE Book 5: THE CORE



FTC Disclosure:
The copies of these books were purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

Thursday, 12 July 2018

THE DRAGONET PROPHECY (WINGS OF FIRE Book 1)


[Image source: RhynoBullraq]

The Dragonet Prophecy by Tui T. Sutherland
Book 1 of the Wings Of Fire series
Read by Shannon McManus
Genre: YA fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobookAudiobook


About The Dragonet Prophecy:
The seven dragon tribes have been at war for generations, locked in an endless battle over an ancient, lost treasure. A secret movement called the Talons of Peace is determined to bring an end to the fighting, with the help of a prophecy -- a foretelling that calls for great sacrifice.

Five dragonets are collected to fulfill the prophecy, raised in a hidden cave and enlisted, against their will, to end the terrible war.

But not every dragonet wants a destiny. And when the select five escape their underground captors to look for their original homes, what has been unleashed on the dragon world may be far more than the revolutionary planners intended . . .
Source: Info in the About The Dragonet Prophecy was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13228487-the-dragonet-prophecy on 18/11/2017.

My Thoughts:
Lovely, quick read.

This is my first Shannon McManus audiobook listen and I like the way she reads. The words are clear and distinct. Her voice is not aggravating to the ears. All in all, I would listen to this narrator again.

This book introduces us to the five dragonets and the world of Pyrrhia. I couldn't decide whether this book is YA (young adult) or middle grade (MG). Maybe something in between. So, what do you call that age gap between YA and MG? ...I don't know either. So let's call it the YA-MG Gap (YAMGG). This world is peopled mainly by dragons with humans as edible endangered species. And our heroes and heroines are "old" 6-year-old dragonets. "Old" 6-year-olds, is the key word here. They already have a strong sense of right and wrong. They have a firm grasp of their purpose in life. Me, ...I didn't get to develop that until I was in college!... Anyway, this is a nice little story about dragons. And it ends in a cliffhanger. Of course it did. But I already have a strong suspicion that it would do that seeing that this is the first book in the series. Having said that, I really enjoyed this book and that is why halfway through this book, I already ordered my copy of the next book. I know that the audiobook says that this book is 8 hours long, but it feels like only an hour or so... So this book is a nice, quick read.

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 4.5
Writing Style = 4.5
Ending = 3
World building = 5
Cover art = 4.5
Pace = (8 hrs and 32 mins )
Plot = 3.5
Narration = 5

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 cherries



FTC Disclosure:
This book, in all its formats, was purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

Thursday, 5 July 2018

TEMPTATION TRIALS REVOLUTION & Giveaway


The Book

Temptation Trials Revolution by B. Truly
Genre: Adult, Dystopian, Romance, Urban Fantasy


About Temptation Trials Revolution:
There are always two sides to a story. Can love withstand the ultimate temptation?

A new Regime has arisen from the havoc and destruction of World War III.

Society now has to follow the strict mandates, reign under the dictatorship of His Highest Eminence or suffer the consequences.

Tobias and Kincade are part of a cryptic organization that’s trying to uncover the secrets behind the Regime. Something is suspicious with the new world order—why else would they want to control the most powerful emotion of love? With mandatory arranged marriages at the age of twenty-one, the only way to fight for love is through the Temptation Trials—a government-sponsored reality TV show.

Kincade and Tobias know the rules, but after they meet the women of their dreams, they face a difficult decision. With their impending birthdays around the corner, the guys have to decide if they will bend to the Regime’s will or fight for their relationships.

Lust, mistaken for love, will lead to down a treacherous path. They soon learn that the spirit may be willing, but the flesh is weak.

Can love save their souls, or is lust too tempting?

This book can be read as a stand-alone, before, or after Temptation Trials Part I. Find out the guy’s POV in a new story that unravels through the Trials.
Source: Info in the About Temptation Trials Revolution was from the press kit from the publicity team.

Buy Link(s):


Book Trailer



Meet The Author

About Brandy:
B. Truly has wanted to be an author since she was fifteen years old. She is grateful to have accomplished this dream. B. Truly has very vivid dreams and a wild imagination. She likes to read, watch tons of TV shows, and movies. She’s addicted to romance, and gets a thrill out of action and sci-fi. She writes new adult and adult romance—sci-fi, dystopian, and paranormal genres.

B. Truly likes to explore different elements of sci-fi romance, and create various realms of reality. She also loves creating impossible situations for her characters to grow from and try to overcome.

B. Truly has three wonderful children, and a husband who defines the person that she is today. She works full-time as an Ultrasound technologist in Houston, Texas.


Giveaway

$15 Amazon Giveaway:

(1) Winner $15 Amazon gift card

5 Points (Comment on Twitter)
https://twitter.com/BrandyTruly

5 Points (Comment on Facebook)
https://www.facebook.com/BTrulysFantasies

4 Points (Tweet about the give-away)
https://twitter.com/BrandyTruly

3 Points (Add "Temptation Trials Revolution" to your shelf on Goodreads)
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40122743-temptation-trials-revolution

2 Points (Visit Facebook)
https://www.facebook.com/BTrulysFantasies



This contest/giveaway is ran by the author.



Tuesday, 19 June 2018

FALLEN EMPIRE

Fallen Empire by K.N. Lee
Book 1 of the Empire of Dragons Chronicles
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: ebook


About Fallen Empire:
They say the Age of Dragons ended after the War on Magic, but hiding in the forgotten lands remains one clan.

While Kylan hunts firedrakes by day, he prepares for a journey across the Sea of Dreams where mermaids thrive and the key to his people's survival is prophecized to be hidden.

Amalia, a Mage, escaped The Brotherhood, a sect of monks who seek the descendants of the gods once. Now, unable to return to neutral territory where magic-users are safe, she finds herself fighting for survival amongst men who can turn into wolves, firedrakes, and a relentless monk who believes she can restore balance to the entire world.

For Amalia, the gods are not just a memory. They are her ancestors, and before she can learn to control her newfound gift, she will face the keeper of a forgotten empire.

A dragon.

In this sprawling epic fantasy novel with shifting wolf hybrids, dragons, and mermaids, Amalia's first battle is for more than her life. It's for the souls of every being born with magic. Join New York Times bestselling author, K.N. Lee on an adventure perfect for fans of Vikings and Game of Thrones.
Source: Info in the About Fallen Empire was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36560333-fallen-empire on 19/06/2018.

My Thoughts:
What drew me to this book is the fantastic book cover! Now that, I bought without even reading the book synopsis. I know, I'm superficial that way. Book covers matter to me. I have to say, that when it comes to sales pitch, the cover art department or whoever did the cover design, aced it! It sold the book to me! The other thing that got this book read is the fact that it got dragons in it! All hail the dragons!!! And then the world building is just fantastic!! The dragons are good, the elves are distant, the forest is dense, the rivers are cool, there is rugged terrain, violent seas, etc., etc., wonderful!! Additionally, I really like the voice of this author! It has a compelling quality. The character development though is a tinee, tiny effy... as in, the heroine has a tendency to be "too stupid to live" (TSTL). I'm kinda hoping that this will not bloom into a full TSTL in the subsequent books in the series. Now that, would be a real shame... However, it ends in a whooping, huge cliffhanger!! And here's the real kicker, I have a feeling that this author is a cliffie kind of author. So am not sure I'm buying anymore of her books... such a shame though, with that wonderful voice...

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4.5
Character development = 4
Story itself = 4
Writing Style = 4
Ending = 0.5
World building = 4.5
Cover art = 5
Pace = 4
Plot = 3.5

Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 5 cherries


Books In The Empire of Dragons Chronicles:


Meet The Author

About KN Lee:
K.N. Lee is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who resides in Charlotte, North Carolina. When she is not writing twisted tales, fantasy novels, and dark poetry, she does a great deal of traveling and promotes other authors. Wannabe rockstar, foreign language enthusiast, and anime geek, K.N. Lee also enjoys helping others reach their writing and publishing goals. She is a winner of the Elevate Lifestyle Top 30 Under 30 "Future Leaders of Charlotte" award for her success as a writer, business owner, and for community service.

She is signed with Captive Quill Press and Patchwork Press.

K.N. Lee loves hearing from fans and readers. Connect with her!



FTC Disclosure:
This book was purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

BEHEMOTH


Behemoth by Trevor H. Cooley
Book 11 of The Bowl Of Souls series
Read by James Foster
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobookAudiobook


About Behemoth:
THE FINALE OF THE JHARRO GROVE SAGA

The Behemoth was created a thousand years ago, its body stretching for miles under Malaroo’s swamplands turning them into a dangerous and uninhabitable place. Now it has learned to swallow the peoples of Malaroo and transform them into its own army; a twisted mix of troll and man known as the Trollkin. It hungers to consume the power of the Jharro Grove and if it succeeds the world will be plunged into darkness.

Justan and Jhonate, forced to hold off their wedding until the threat is over, find themselves stuck between the two rival factions that are the only hope of defeating the Behemoth and its everlasting hunger.

A Bowl of Souls novel.
Source: Info in the About Behemoth was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34623320-behemoth on 05/08/2017.

My Thoughts:
Reading this book after waiting for so long after the last book was like meeting old friends again! And I am particularly happy to see Fist again, being his lovable ogre self! By now I am an old die hard fan of this series. And this book was a wonderful 5 star read! The down side is, that you have to trudge through previous books first to get here! And that is not an arduous task as it may sound. It has its down sides and upsides. You just have to roll with the bad as with the good. And the series has lots and lots of good reading times!

Sure, some would say that the plot is kind of formulaic, so what? It is the pleasure of reading it that matters! And it is a pleasurable read! At first I was kinda reluctant to read through the book so I only listened to it halfway through. I was reluctant because I knew this book is going to be a cliffhanger simply because every single book in this series is a cliffie. And it is kind of one, but only if you read the epilogue. Even then, it is still kind of not... This book closes 12 books worth of story and it is satisfying! Of course I want more! So the epilogue tells me what to expect next and I very much like that, so those of you who is thinking of following this series, read the epilogue! :) Needless to say that this is the best book in the series!

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 4.5
Writing Style = 5
Ending = 4.5
World building = 5
Cover art = 4
Pace = 4.5
Plot = 4.5
Narration = 5

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 cherries


Books In The Bowl Of Souls Series:
Book 1: EYE OF THE MOONRAT   Book: 1.5: HILT'S PRIDE   Book 2: MESSENGER OF THE DARK PROPHET   Book 3: HUNT OF THE BANDHAM   Book 4: THE WAR OF STARDEON   Book 5: MOTHER OF THE MOONRAT   Book 6: TARAH WOODBLADE   Book 7: PROTECTOR OF THE GROVE   Book 8: THE OGRE APPRENTICE   Book 9: THE TROLL KING   Book 10: PRIESTESS OF WAR   Book 11: BEHEMOTH


 
The Author
Trevor H. Cooley
Since putting out his first book: Eye of the Moonrat in May of 2012, Trevor H. Cooley has sold over 200,000 copies of his books in ebook and audio formats.

He was born in South Carolina and has lived all around the United states, including Utah, New Mexico, Michigan and Tennessee.

His love of reading started in the second grade with Lloyd Alexander’s Chronicles of Prydain series. He couldn’t get enough and continued with David Eddings, Tolkein, Robert Jordan, Stephen King, and many others. Since then, all he wanted was to become a published writer.

The characters and concepts that eventually became the Bowl of Souls series started in his teens. He wrote short stories, kept notebooks full of ideas, and generally dreamed about the world constantly. There were several attempts at starting a novel over the years.

Not long after he was married, his wife told him to stop talking about the story and write it down. Many years and rewrites and submissions and rejection letters later, he finally put the books on Amazon. In August of 2013 he quit his day job and started writing full time.


The Narrator

James Foster
James Foster was born in Bj√∂rk’s house in Iceland and grew up on Easter Island, where his parents were giant stone heads. He has the ability to fire beams of tacos out of his hands and he can turn his legs into tigers. On Sundays, James enjoys reading Family Circus and traveling through time. His favorite color is greenish-transparent and his favorite movie is the one you just watched. James is in charge of uploading the staff bios to the website, and no one has checked over his work.



FTC Disclosure:
This book was purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

 
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