Book Review: The Land of the Beasts by S.F. Claymore

“Psykoria is on the brink of civil war. King Breetor knows he must do something to appease the unrest. He decides that the only way he can win peace is by impressing the other lords with a feat so grand it will win their undying respect.

There is a legend of a land where the greatest beasts in the continent reside. In a war past, men bore witness as dragons appeared in their realm to help end the conflicts. Breetor has decided to follow their trail and find this land. If he can bring back proof of its existence, perhaps he can end the unrest in his realm once and for all…”

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My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

King Breetor decides that he is going to go to a faraway land to defeat a dragon and bring proof back to his people. There is growing unrest and he thinks that they will respect him if he shows them how brave he is.

What an adventure! Breetor and his men battle the sea and actually find the Land of the Beasts. Not only are there dragons but there are many dangerous beasts. The people who live in this land are welcoming, but when they find out that Breetor wants to kill a dragon, they’re not happy because they believe it will cause a war with the dragons.

Breetor’s adventure turns out to be very different from what he’d envisioned. He learns a lot about dragons as well as the Land of the Beasts. Will he be able to accomplish his goal of proving his bravery?

The Land of the Beasts is a fun adventure for readers around middle school age. For me it was a quick read that was good but it would have been better if I could have connected with the character.

About the Author

Born and raised in the UK, I have a technology-based education, but my passion has always been in creating stories, worlds, characters, and doing anything that allows me to use my imagination.

I’ve had the privilege of being able to travel many parts of the world in such a small number of years, learning of different cultures and histories. Everywhere I go, I’m always absorbing new knowledge, and when one has so many ideas bursting in their mind, there is no greater joy than allowing them to materialise.

Review: Bound Together & Newly Released Boxed Set by Stormy Smith

There’s a good chance you’ve seen posts about the Bound series before. It’s clean, new adult fantasy and series that’s been downloaded more than 100,000 times since the first book came out in July of 2014!

For the first time, Stormy Smith is offering the Bound series in a boxed set! You can get three full-length novels plus her bonus holiday novella for just $6.99! That’s a STEAL!

 

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Bound by Duty, book one in the Bound series:

Amelia grew up in a world of half-truths. She knows she’s an Elder, but has no idea what that means. Her father reminds her daily that she must maintain control, but he refuses to explain why. Even worse, she’s betrothed to the prince of the Immortals and doesn’t even know his name.

Finally breaking free to live a few normal years at a community college, the last thing Amelia expects is to find her best friend in a cheeky southern girl, or fall for a self-assured human who sees her for who she is, not what she will become.

As she learns more about herself, Amelia realizes the line between love and duty is a thin one. As her power continues to increase exponentially and her questions are slowly answered, Amelia must make the ultimate choice. The question is, will her head win the battle, or her heart?

Continue Amelia’s story in Bound by Spells and Bound by Prophecy. Then, enjoy the bonus novella, Bound Together.

 

My Review of Bound Together

I received a free ecopy of this novella from the author for an honest review.

I have enjoyed the entire Bound series and was thrilled to hear that Stormy Smith had written a novella about Amelia and Aidan. What is nice about Bound Together is that it’s about them spending Christmas together and their life is almost normal. They have been through so much, it was refreshing to read about them being able to enjoy life together.

I definitely recommend Bound Together but absolutely not until you’ve read the first 3 books!

My reviews of the series: Bound by Duty, Bound by Spells, Bound by Prophecy.

 

 

Here’s where to get your copy:

Amazon

iBooks

Nook

Kobo

 

About the author

HeadshotA word nerd from the very beginning, Stormy Smith has always had her nose in a book or a pen in her hand. From a journalism degree to a public relations career, manipulating words has always been her forte. She never expected her love of stories to translate into writing them, but one day the words were there and couldn’t be stopped.

Stormy lives in Iowa’s capital with her husband and two crazy cats. When she isn’t working on, or thinking about, her books, Stormy’s favorite places include bar patios, live music shows, her yoga mat or anywhere she can relax with her husband or girlfriends.

Website: www.stormysmith.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/authorstormysmith

Twitter: @stormysmith

GoodReads: www.goodreads.com/stormysmith

Book Review: The Hoard by Neil Grimmett

23820209 (1)Title: The Hoard

Author: Neil Grimmett

Genre: Mystery, Suspense

Publication Date: August 5, 2014

About the Book

(from Goodreads)

The Hoard is a thriller set in the secretive, dangerous world of a Royal Ordnance Factory; a vast, surreal place full of some of the most volatile elements on the planet.
Thirty years before the main story, the nitration house at the ROF in Bridgwater exploded in a fireball that could be seen for miles around. The entire crew was killed, and the source of the explosion was never found; authorities claimed that the charge in the nitrator had gone critical and that the chargehand was unable to stop a lethal cook-off. But Gunner Wade, the man the nitration crew sent for help that day knows differently: they were murdered; and he was branded a coward.
Now Byron, the son of one of the victims, enters the sprawling Gormenghast-like compound of the top secret factory to discover the truth about his father’s death. But what he finds in the dark heart of this world is a hidden hoard of super-high explosives; illegally produced and drenched in the blood of those killed to conceal its existence. As the threat of discovery mounts, Byron finds himself at the centre of a struggle between good and evil; both to prevent a destructive force from being unleashed again and to bring the sadistic mass murderers who killed his father to justice. He is aided by an unlikely alliance of helpers, including the beautiful widow of a murdered chemist and Gunner Wade. Against them are the original perpetrators and their new legion of evil acolytes.
Inspired by a massive explosion that killed six men at the real-world ROF Bridgwater facility in 1951 – no cause was ever found – The Hoard is a gripping, grim novel that offers a glimpse into a self-contained apocalyptic landscape scarred both by the birthing of the materiel that fuels war, and the hearts of evil men who would do anything for greed.

My Review

I received a free ecopy of this book from the author for an honest review.

I had read The Threshing Circle by Neil Grimmett and I liked it so I was looking forward to reading this book. It is fiction based on an actual unexplained explosion at an ordinance factory in 1951 and is full of mystery, suspense and surprises.

Neil Grimmett’s writing flows well and is easy to follow. It did get a little more detailed than I prefer about the explosives factory at times, but that is a personal preference.

The characters are unique and interesting. Byron is the son of one of the men killed in the explosion years ago and he goes to work undercover at the factory to see if he can find out exactly what happened to his father. He finds an unlikely ally, a widow whose husband was recently murdered. He also meets many employees who worked at the facility when the explosion occurred but he doesn’t know who he can trust, if anyone.

I enjoyed The Hoard with all of its mystery, twists and suspense. And it had a great ending. 

Purchase on Amazon.

 

About the Author

(from Goodreads)

1469354Neil Grimmett has had over eighty five short stories published. In the UK by among others: London Magazine, Stand, Panurge, Iron, Ambit, Postscripts Magazine, Pretext etc. Australia, Quadrant, South Africa, New Contrast. Plus stories in the leading journals of Singapore, India, France, Canada, and the USA, where he has appeared in Fiction, The Yale Review, DoubleTake, The southern Humanities Review, Green Mountains Review, Descant, The Southern Review, West Branch and Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. He has appeared online in Blackbird, Plum Ruby Review, Tatlin’s Tower, Web Del Sol, In Posse Review, m.a.g., Word Riot, Blue Moon Review, 3AM, Gangway, Eclectica, The Cortland Review, Segue, The Dublin Quarterly , Ducts, Sugar Mule, Mysterical E, Thuglit and over thirty others. His stories have also appeared in the anthologies: ENGLAND CALLING, BOOK OF VOICES and Italy’s ISBN’s Top International Stories. He has made the storySouth Million Writers Notable Short Story list for the last three years. In addition, he has won the Write On poetry award, 7 Oppenheim John Downes Awards, 5 major British Arts Council Awards, a Royal Society of Authors award and was just awarded a major grant from the Royal Literary Fund. He has been signed over the last ten years by twelve of the leading literary agents in both the UK and USA. 

Book Review: The Worlds Traveler by M.L. Roble

25842630Title: The Worlds Traveler

Author: M.L. Roble

Publication Date: November 11, 2015

Recommended Ages: 10+

Summary

Life on the run from madman Martin Reimer gets in the way of everything.

For fourteen-year-old Phillip, it has meant having to stay hidden, unable to use his gift of moving through maps to search for his missing father. But the arrival of a stranger named Delroy brings unexpected opportunity, for Delroy is a man with the ability to travel worlds hidden within our own and he was sent by Phillip’s father. Now Phillip will do everything he can to find his dad, even if it means tricking Delroy into helping him or a quest through those hidden worlds.

Even if leaving home means Martin can now find him…

Follow in the adventures of Phillip Stone and Natalie Bristol from the award-winning book The Magician’s Doll!

My Review

I received a free ecopy of this book for an honest review.

I really enjoyed The Magician’s Dollthe first book in this series so I was excited to read The Worlds Traveler. It’s the story of Natalie and Phillip who have gifts, as do the members of their families. There is a madman who is trying to take all of the gifts of their kind and he especially wants Natalie’s gift. Their parents have used their gifts to shield and protect the neighborhood that they live in so that no one can find them. Phillip wants to find his father, who is missing, and when he meets the Worlds Traveler he knows he has found a way.

The Worlds Traveler is easy to read and is written well. It’s full of drama, suspense, and adventure. There are also a couple surprises along the way. Natalie and Phillip continue to develop their gifts and to learn more about the world(s) around them. 

I definitely recommend The Worlds Traveler for readers of all ages. I liked it even more than The Magician’s Doll!

Purchase the Book on Amazon.

About the Author

M.L. RobleM. L. Roble’s desire to write a children’s novel stems from the nostalgia of her own middle grade reading years where she first experienced books like “The Chronicles of Narnia” and “The Shattered Stone”. There have been different books and genres since, but those years fueled an enchantment for story that continues to this day.

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Book Review: The Victor’s Heritage by Anthony Caplan

27073904Title: The Victor’s Heritage

Author: Anthony Caplan

Genre: Science Fiction

Publication Date: October 10, 2015

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Description

(from Goodreads)

Corrag is a Democravian teenager, smart, funny and bold. Maybe too bold. It is 2045. America has been shattered into two countries. Democravia and the Republican Homeland. Peace between the two continental rivals is always fragile. An ill-fated escapade with her boyfriend launches Corrag on a journey of revolutionary impact, driving her to exile in the Nenkaja from which there is no escape. Will she ever find a place for herself in a society dominated by the Augment? The Victor’s Heritage, Book Two of the Jonah Trilogy, is a science-fiction thriller, a roller coaster of a book.

Review

I received a free ecopy of this book for an honest review.

I  had read Savior, the first book in the Jonah trilogy, and when the author asked if I wanted to review the second book, I was happy to do so. Although this is the second book in the trilogy, it is a stand alone book. It’s about the daughter/granddaughter of the main characters in Savior.

In this futuristic world, there is no longer a United States. There is Democravia and the Republican Homeland, each with its good and bad points but in both, the negatives outweigh the positives. 

Corrag is a teenage girl who lives in Democravia and she is supposed to be Augmented soon. Although she doesn’t know exactly what the entails, she does know that the emotions and actions of the Augmented are monitored and controlled. She also knows that she doesn’t want to do that, at least for now. She doesn’t know what she wants and she’s bold enough to fight for herself. She’s an interesting character because she’s a lost teen who doesn’t know what her goals are, but she ends up in some crazy situations and usually knows the right thing to do.

There is a lot of action in The Victor’s Heritage along with some twists. You never know where Corrag is going to end up next. I liked the ending and look forward to reading the next book. 

Available on Amazon.

About the Author

(from Goodreads)

633215Anthony Caplan is an independent writer, teacher and homesteader in northern New England. He has worked at various times as a shrimp fisherman, environmental activist, journalist, taxi-driver, builder, window-washer, and telemarketer, (the last for only a month, but one week he did win a four tape set of the greatest hits of George Jones for selling the most copies of Time-Life’s The Loggers.) Currently, Caplan is working on restoring a 150 year old farmstead where he and his family tend sheep and chickens, grow most of their own vegetables, and have started a small apple orchard from scratch His road novels, BIRDMAN and FRENCH POND ROAD, trace the meanderings of one Billy Kagan, a footloose soul striving after sanity and love in the last years of the last century. His latest fiction effort, LATITUDES – A Story of Coming Home, to be released on Kindle, Nook and Smashwords and paperback in the summer of 2012, is a young boy’s transformative journey overcoming dysfunction, dislocation and distance.

Book Review: A Catfish Tale by Whitney Stewart

 

18378821Title: A Catfish Tale
Author: Whitney Stewart
Publisher: Albert Whitman
Pages: 32
Genre: Children’s Picture Book
Format: Hardcover/Kindle

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About the Book

Deep in the bayou, a Cajun fisherman named Jack catches a magic fish that offers to grant wishes in exchange for being set free. Jack doesn’t have a lot of wishes, but his wife Jolie sure does–for a mansion, a paddleboat, fame and fortune! With each wish, all the fish says is “Ah, tooloulou–if that ain’t the easiest thing to do.” But when Jolie wants to be crowned Mardi Gras queen, have things gone too far?

Available on Amazon
 

 

My Review

I received a free copy of this book for an honest review. I had agreed to read and review Meditation is an Open Sky and Whitney Stewart sent this book also.

A Catfish Tale is a children’s book that teaches children about greed. Jack finds a magic catfish that can grant wishes. Although Jack is happy and doesn’t want anything, his wife, Jolie, keeps sending him back to ask for more and more. As things progress, it’s easy for children to see who is happier, Jack or Jolie.

At the end of the book, is a page that has a Bayou Glossary with key words from the bayou area as well as a recipe for Seafood Gumbo. What a great idea!

I think this is a book that any child would enjoy. It has a fun story with vibrant pictures. 

 

 

About the Author

Whitney StewartWhitney Stewart grew up in New England and graduated from Brown University. She published her first award-winning, young adult biography after interviewing the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet, the subject of two of her books. She trekked with Sir Edmund Hillary in the Everest region of Nepal; interviewed Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi in Rangoon, Burma; and traveled extensively in Asia to research the lives of Deng Xiaoping, Mao Zedong, and Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha. She is the author of three middle-grade novels and multiple middle-grade nonfiction books, including an unknown tale of Abraham Lincoln and artist Francis Bicknell Carpenter. Her newest picture books include A Catfish Tale, a bayou retelling of the Grimm brothers’ Fisherman and his Wife, and Meditation is an Open Sky: Mindfulness for Kids.

 

For More Information

Book Review: Ollie the Orca by Laura Maw

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Genre: Children
Date Published: October 2014
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About the Book

Ollie the OrcaCome along and join Bubba the Bottlenose dolphin as he makes a new buddy while sharing a day they won’t soon forget. Grade 1-2 Reading Level.

Bubba is out on one of his undersea adventures when he finds a frightened Orca trapped by a fishing net! In this attention gripping yet comical tale, Bubba works with his buddy Sammy the Seagull to free Ollie. Come along and join Bubba the Bottlenose dolphin as he makes a new buddy while sharing a day they won’t soon forget.

My Review

I received a free ecopy of this book for an honest review.

This is a cute children’s book with colorful pictures and it is easy to read. It’s for grades 1-2 but would also be a good book to read aloud.

Not only is it a cute story, but Ollie the Orca teaches the importance of teamwork. Bubba couldn’t have gotten Ollie out of the fishing net by himself but he called his friend, Sammy the Seagull, and they were able to work together to free Ollie. And, best of all, Bubba has found a new friend!

This is a book that will keep the interest of young children.

 

About the Author

Ollie the Orca authorWhen Laura Maw was a child, her favorite activities were going to the ocean and picking out another stack of books from the library. She loved reading from a very young age and could never seem to satisfy her craving for another new adventure, another new imagination landscape. Writing is a passion that seemed to come naturally with her love of reading. She too wanted to be able to help someone through a bad day, or to have a unique and thrilling experience on a good day, through the written communication of a story. She has a very vivid imagination that often takes her on wondrous adventures in her dreams. In fact, the idea for Bubba’s Balloon came to her in the form of a very funny dream. She woke up laughing and felt that it was a story that must be shared with others. The character of Ollie was even developed through daydreaming about Bubba’s adventures.