Posted in Book Reviews

Lioness of Kell by Paul E. Horsman

Lioness of KellLioness of Kell by Paul E. Horsman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a mixture of high points blended with mediocre points. For a YA reader I would expect high ratings and rave reviews. There is more undesirable language than I’d want in my reads along with a fair bit of hinting at intercourse. The writing is solid and for the most part well formed with only a few minor issues that shouldn’t bother the majority of readers. The world-building is very nicely done. I am not thrilled with the characters in that while they are clearly thought through they are secondary to the events that surround them. This makes it difficult to connect with any of them and makes the read feel more like reading about a game than investing into a tale. The first couple chapters are a bit of a chore to get through but once past all the introductions it does get better. I’m not sure why the author decided to name the book after a female character only to spend more time with the male characters. Some of the demeaning dialogue is over-the-top and feels less developed. Overall this is a great book for those who love to read about characters you might find in an RPG or readers who prefer YA books.

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Secrets of the Lost Caves (Potluck Yarn Trilogy Book #2)


LostCavesSecrets of the Lost Caves
by Cheryl Potter

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Potter continues her well woven tale in this second installment of the trilogy. I advise you to read the first book in the series prior to starting this one although it’s not completely impossible to start with the second and enjoy the read. I like the way knitting is incorporated into the tale and how the magic elements are described. The writing is solid and well composed. The plot is intriguing with several threads to keep track of. Potter handles these threads nicely from start to finish. Clean reading adds to the enjoyment. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.

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Fingers in the Mist by O’Dell Hutchison

Fingers in the MistFingers in the Mist by O’Dell Hutchison

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hutchison does a fine job crafting a creepy tale that will leave many readers sleeping with a light on, or at least reading with an extra one on. The writing is intelligently written with no glaring mistakes to distract the reader. A few moments during my read I felt a hint of familiarity but each time Hutchison took a fresh path making this feel unique. The characters are well fleshed and layered adding to the enjoyment of the read. The plot is well planned and threaded with enough extras blended in to keep the reader both guessing and wanting to read the entire book. Overall I feel this is an entertaining read for a wide age and genre range. I received an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.

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The Lost by Evan Ronan

The LostThe Lost by Evan Ronan
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

An ARC was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. Reviewed by S.F. for BookReviewsAndGiveaways.org This book is an interesting read with a hint of something not quiet ordinary. Normally when an author writes him/her-self into a book the whole thing turns out quirky or worse. This time it worked pretty well although it’s still not a good trait to practice. The story is an easy one to follow and enjoyable to read with interesting characters. Overall we feel this is a good book to curl up with and read. Most readers will enjoy it.

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Seven Seeds of Summer by Chantal Gadoury

Seven Seeds of SummerSeven Seeds of Summer by Chantal Gadoury
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I found this read to be a mixed bag. The writing has a few hitches, oddly worded phrases, misuses of words and other technical issues. The plot is interesting with only a few flow issues. I see potential for a very well done story once the writing aspect is repaired. I believe this will fix the flow and character issues as they seem to be related to the writing and not other issues. I can see this becoming a popular YA book especially with the mythological threads. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.

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The Gathering Darkness by Lisa Collicutt

The Gathering DarknessThe Gathering Darkness by Lisa Collicutt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My best friend read this while I was otherwise detained and away from my books and wouldn’t stop talking about it. She loves the characters and says they are perfectly presented with adorable flaws without going over the top. The writing is good, good enough that she didn’t want to put the book down and lost several hours of sleep. The plot is so well executed it felt natural and has a smooth logical flow. We received an ARC through Curiosity Quills in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected our opinion.

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The Sorcery Code (Book #1) by Dima Zales

The Sorcery Code (The Socery Code, #1)The Sorcery Code by Dima Zales
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

For me this feels like a refreshing blend of clean romance and good fantasy. I’ll admit parts of the magic system reminded me of coding BASIC back in high school. The rest of the magic system feels different (in a good way) than the fantasy books I usually read. For younger or less technologically savvy readers the descriptions might feel unique and quite original. The writing itself is rather good, earning the book that fourth star and making this a fun read. The characters are great for the setting, writing and the plot. While not the deepest or most fleshed out characters, they are well suited for their role. I like how the change of POV is handled as well. The plot has a good flow after a slightly sluggish and eyebrow raising start. Overall this makes for an entertaining read and certainly something I’d like to read more of. I would recommend this more for readers of romance but the fantasy side is interesting enough that some fantasy readers might enjoy it as well. I received an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.

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What Tomorrow May Bring: YA Dystopian Collection by 11 Authors

What Tomorrow May BringWhat Tomorrow May Bring by 11Authors
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

We received this collection in exchange for our honest unpaid opinion. I will start off with this: everyone will find a favorite story. Eleven stories is no small feat and I am impressed with more than one. Of course I found two I was less thrilled to be reading but that’s still great odds. One in particular was very slow getting started and I was not able to connect with the characters at all. So pass over those two and we still have NINE stories I feel are well worth the read. My middle son loves this genre and enjoyed reading each of the books with no complaint. Overall this is a great collection and well worth the purchase and time spent reading.

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Five – Out of the Dark by Holli Anderson

Five - Out of the Dark (Five #1)Five – Out of the Dark by Holli Anderson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Cleanly written and easy to read and enjoy. A few too good to be true instances but nothing too distracting. Just the right amount of backstory and building up for the intended audience. The plot picks up quickly and moves along at just the right pace to keep even easily distracted readers turning pages. Nicely detailed encounters and well handled magical elements. Each character feels thought out and layered. I enjoyed the manner in which they developed and worked together towards a common goal.I received an evaluation copy through the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion, which may not mirror your own. No compensation has been (or will be) accepted beyond the single evaluation copy of her book.

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Cloak of the Light (Wars of the Realm, #1) by Chuck Black

Cloak of the Light (Wars of the Realm, #1)Cloak of the Light by Chuck Black
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

My neighbor and I read through this book over a couple days; mostly her as I found the first 1/3 uninteresting enough for my mind to wander. She agrees the first few chapters could use trimming down or even removal. From there we agree the plot has potential but the book falls short. For me it is the preaching tones and lack of depth. I could only recommend this book to those who enjoy their Christian books this way. For her, it is more the way things are presented and the fact this is supposed to be a YA book. She feels this should be Adult reading. We do agree that certain scenes are well written and the book has potential. We received an evaluation copy through the publisher in exchange for an honest review. These are our opinions and may not mirror your own. We received no compensation beyond the free copy.

Author’s Website

See for yourself how the first chapter reads here.

More about the author here.