Sunday, November 22, 2015

The Truthseeker

Free book, blah, blah, blah, yada, yada, yada.

The Truthseeker by Eric Stockwell is an awesome book! It has action, adventure,myth, magic, blood, guts and gore, and dead burnt bodies (remember Alice? No, she's not there but I couldn't resist the reference).

The story is a biographic account of your (my) previous life. My question is: Who told Eric Stockwell our secret? The Truthseeker is a many layered story involving a wicked goddess, demons, magical entities and you(me). It is a quest, a coming of age, and a set-things-right story all at once. It is also extremely funny and irreverent.

The ending has quite the twist, and a question for all of us to ponder. You know I'm not big on message books, but the message here is in that final question, so I can live with it. If it was contained elsewhere in the story I ignored it.

Although Eric Stockwell remains a mystery: no picture, no author blurb, no nothing, He has given us a truly fun read. I highly recommend The Truthseeker. Enjoy!


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Raven of Dusk: Transcendence

Author Anthony Greer provided me a print copy of The Raven of Dusk: Transcendence for review.

This book is an interesting blend of medieval, present, and even futuristic elements. Knights, queens, castles, cell phones, gun blades, and air shuttles.

Plenty of action, and political intrigue.  The Raven of Dusk: Transcendence the first in the The Raven of Dusk series. There are several intertwining story lines to enjoy here. A father and his estranged son, a woman in trouble, a girl whose intelligence separates her from her peers, a man seeking vengeance, and a man living under the weight of his family history.These themes are skillfully woven into a remarkably coherent and easy to follow narrative. Although you know how much I like cliffhangers, the ending of this book was not too abrupt, I was more or less ready for it.

The negative is, once again, proofreading. There were more mistakes than should be found in a print copy. Since there is a barcode and price on the book I surmise (not assume) that this is not a galley or arc. If it is my apologies to the author. But, misusing words like "passed" instead of "past" and the like should not make it into a final version. Fortunately these were not so numerous as to interfere with my enjoyment of the book. But you know me, typos and other errors are a "button" for me and I have to comment.

Errors aside The Raven of Dusk: Transcendence is a very good read that I think you will find entertaining (and isn't that why we read in the first place?). Enjoy!



Thursday, November 12, 2015

Last Bastards Standing

I was offered the e-version of Last Bastards Standing by author Sienna Cassedy for review.

This was a weird experience from start to finish. Most important of course is that I really enjoyed this book. It's like no other book I have ever read, but more on that later.

When author Cassedy sent the mobi file for Last Bastards Standing, it came without a cover or title page and identified as "unknown". The only identification was the copyright date and the authors name. Strange on my e-reader to see the listing; Unknown-hbib. That's how the book lists on my device. Add to that the fact that there was no listing for Last Bastards Standing on Goodreads (there is now, you're welcome) but there was on Amazon.

Anyway, on to the book. As I said, unlike any book I've read before. It is told like a first person report of the goings on of the main character who is either extremely angry, extremely arrogant, or a self defined member of the intelligentsia who believes she is above the mundane mortals of the world. She may just be bat-crap crazy and knows it. It is probably a case of all of the above.

The reader is taken on a bizarre trip through the world Sal occupies, meets an assortment of people who normally go unseen, or at least unacknowledged in society. Sal often (usually) takes her anger/ superiority out on the lesser/ better mortals she encounters (including sometimes, the reader). She is a walking ball of contradictions, self-hate and self-importance.  

This book is not a happily- ever- after kind of book, but it is a funny, irreverent, and at times, touching story. I was somewhat disturbed to find out why I like meat, oh well. The story does end with a cliffhanger (bastard), you'll have to read the book to understand this reference (it's not an insult). There are a lot of cultural references, many involving music and books, most of which I got.

So, if you like edgy, intellectual (or pseudo-intellectual) stories you too will probably enjoy Last Bastards Standing by Sienna Cassedy. Of course it may just be that she is poking fun at all of us. Either way, enjoy!


Monday, November 9, 2015

Fortress of the Demon

Fortress of the Demon by Scott Tomasheski was given to me in exchange for a review.

When I first received my copy of Fortress of the Demon I was quite surprised that Nancy ( the person who sent me the book) included a separate paper listing the errors in the book. I don't expect they will do this for the mass market, but I consider it a class action to provide it for the reviewer.

I really enjoyed this book. It is a wild ride through time, space, technology and adventure. It is part of the Time Defenders series. A lot of fun.

The technology described was mind boggling as was the pace of the story. I really had to pay attention as characters operated in multiple times almost simultaneously. I am not a physicist so I can not speak to the theoretical accuracy of the story, but I don't really care.

The main character, at least she is in my mind, is referred to variously as Bartolomea, Barty, Doamna. and Mrs. A, Atherton. Of course in the flow of the story she appears at several different ages ranging from 28 to 90. At any age, she is an accomplished fighter, tactician and strategist, probably the smartest person in her world and perhaps the deadliest.

The villain, Baron Hookfinger is as dastardly as they come, with apparently  no redeeming social value.

The Time Defenders adventures take them to several wheres and whens around the world. It's easy to root for the good guys and hiss at the bad.

I recommend Fortress of the Demon by Scott Tomasheski to anyone who wants to read a book, not for a message, not for social commentary, but just for fun. Enjoy


Thursday, November 5, 2015

Otto Black

I was given an e-version of Otto Black by Alexandru Parvu in exchange for an honest review.

I did not finish this book, so I will not attempt to give it a full review here. I only write this because it was posted on Goodreads that I was reading the book.


Sunday, November 1, 2015

Loyalist To A Fault

I won a copy of Loyalist to a Fault by Evan Munday in a Goodreads Giveaway.

I fear I may be in trouble here for a couple of reasons; first, author Evan Munday, in the first chapter of Loyalist to a Fault mildly (and good-naturedly) chastises readers who have not read the first two books in The Dead Kid Detective Agency series, and second, the Barnes and Noble website, where I also post reviews when able, lists Loyalist to a Fault as for 8-12 year-old readers, Amazon also lists it as a children's book.

I, sadly, have not read the first two offerings in the series, and I do not fall in the audience target age range.

If this truly destroys the credibility of my review, oh well, because I enjoyed this book immensely. The narrator often speaks directly to the reader making them an insider to the story. I think this is great and makes an already funny story even better. The adventures of our heroine, October Schwartz, are too much fun. Though maybe not to her.

As the series title divulges, our human detective, who is in the ninth grade, is aided in her sleuthing by several non-living entities (ghosts). They of course have many (mis)adventures on the way to resolving their mysteries. Think Scooby-Doo meets Nancy Drew, meets Saved by the Bell, meets Rocky Horror (the narrator).

There are many pop culture references which the target audience is probably too young to get, so author Munday provides a helpful guide explaining those references. Shows how old I am, I understood most of the references without the guide.

I would advise whomever is in charge of such things, to reconsider labeling Loyalist to a Fault as for 8-12 year-olds. I think adults, at least those who still possess a sense of humor, will have fun reading this book. Seeing the book described as a children's book may discourage them from checking it out. This would be sad indeed, we all need a good, clean, fun read from time to time.

Loyalist to a Fault  is not serious (did I get that point across yet?), if you want serious, read War and Peace, if you want light-hearted fun, read Evan Munday's Loyalist to a Fault. Unless you are a full on grinch you'll like it. Enjoy!