Monday, October 2, 2023

"Double Double Royal Trouble"
by Trixie Silvertale

After the witch who makes the cursed candies that trap magical creatures, causing them to remain bound to the Renaissance Faire is found dead, it seems that things are happening quite at a rapid pace and great changes are in store for everyone. Not only does this murder need to be solved, but there has been a dragon spotted flying at night, and no one knows who it is. Also, there is a possibility that the curse could actually be broken, which would allow everyone to stay or go if they chose. But not everyone is sure they want the curse to be ended. Many of them have been trapped in the Faire for centuries and no longer know how to survive outside of it. Could one of them be the murderer? And can the curse actually be broken or are they all doomed to remain trapped there forever?

I received a review copy of this book. It was the final book in this multi-author, combined-world series. And it was a fantastic way to end the series, though I personally would love to read about what some of the characters will do next. This book was fast paced and the type of book you just don't want to put down. I really enjoyed reading it, as well as all the previous books in the series. The characters have been fun to read about, and I am only sorry to see this series end, even knowing that it had to eventually.

If you've read the previous books, have visited a Renaissance Faire, or enjoy reading cozy mysteries with a paranormal twist, then I believe you will enjoy this book. While I know that I’ve not said much about the story itself here, I am trying to be very careful about not giving away too much and spoiling the ending, which makes it very difficult to say much of anything that doesn’t include spoilers. The main character is Coriander, the recently crowned queen of the fairies, but all of the characters that I've come to love also play a large part in this story. And that only makes it even better. As I said above, it's a great ending to a very fun series.

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Friday, September 29, 2023

"Over the Falls with Gabby and Maddox"
by Steve Altier

Gabby and Maddox are siblings. Maddox is on a baseball team and Gabby is in dance classes. Secretly though, she yearns to play baseball like her younger brother does, while at the same time not wanting to hurt her mother's feelings by telling her she'd rather play baseball than dance. Then one day their parents surprise them with a vacation trip to Niagara Falls, and the family goes on their adventurous vacation to New York.

This was a sweet chapter book meant for young readers. Gabby and Maddox get to explore Niagara Falls, learn some of the fun and interesting history of the great landmark, and make some new friends along the way. This was a very sweet story that shows and teaches some history of the falls in a fun way as well as shows that girls can do anything that boys can do.

I received an Advance Review Copy of this book and enjoyed reading it. My daughter is currently too old for this book, but I think she would have enjoyed it when she was still young enough for it.

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Monday, September 25, 2023

"So we Stay Hidden" by Nick Savage

Vampires, Werewolves, and more. In West Haven, it seems that they secretly live among the humans. But the reason behind why they keep their true natures hidden isn't because they are evil. In fact, other than having a medical condition that makes them what they are, most people don't know that they aren't human. And just like anyone else, their lives are just as difficult at times, with the same highs and lows as anyone else. They may be different, but they are not the monsters some think they are.

I am going to start off by recommending you begin this series with book 1, "Us of Legendary Gods" as I believe a new reader might feel a little lost if they don't. That said, this book was just as enthralling as the previous one. Someone is hunting the Legends, but why seems to be the question. 

If you enjoyed the first book in this series, you'll want to read this one. The twists and turns will keep you wanting to know more. Parts of this story are as heartbreaking as the previous book was. This one doesn't end on as much of a cliffhanger as the first book, but it will leave you wanting to read the next one. 

One thing hasn't seemed to change though, and that is that people, whether what one might consider "normal", human, or monster, really aren't all that different from each other. But more often than not, all most of them seem to see are the differences rather than the similarities.

If you like stories involving Vampires, Werewolves, or other beings, and that are as much about who they are as the story is about what they are, then give this series a try. I don't think you'll regret it.

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Friday, September 22, 2023

"Brigid of Ireland" by Cindy Thomson

Born the daughter of a slave, and separated at a very young age from her mother, Brigid was herself a slave in her father's household. But her life would take her beyond what she was born as, and her faith and kindness would help bring many into the Christian faith in Ireland.

This was a historical fiction novel about the life of a woman who would come to be known as Saint Brigid. It's an interesting tale and one that I enjoyed reading. It gives great insight into the life of a Christian woman living in what was at the time still as much a pagan country as it was becoming more and more Christian. 

I enjoyed reading this, and I think anyone curious about Saint Brigid or what life was like for Christians in a pagan country long ago would enjoy this book. Be aware that religion is, of necessity, a very large part of this book. (You can't really separate religion from the life of someone who was declared a Saint, now can you?) So if you do not enjoy books that are heavy on religion then this book may not be for you. But if you enjoy historical fiction, or books involving someone with a strong religious faith, then you will likely enjoy this book.

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Monday, September 18, 2023

"The Wizard if Menace" by Erin Johnson

When a singer at the Faire is murder by Excalibur, the sword belonging to King Arthur, Laidey's cat familiar, Mort, is soon blamed for the murder, and if she can't find the actual killer, it's almost certain that he will be executed. And at the same time, it seems that if they can find a way to summon an unknown descendant of the person who had cast the curse that had doomed all of them to remain trapped in the Renaissance Faire, it may be possible to end the curse, freeing them all.

This was a fun cozy mystery. The link to the  Arthurian legend, made me smile. (I've always been partial to King Arthur stories.) There were several interesting twists along the way in this story that kept me trying to solve both the main part of the story, as well as the secondary story, both of which intertwined beautifully.

I received a review copy of this book and have enjoyed not only this one, but all of the previous books in this multi-author, shared-world series. If you have enjoyed any of the previous books in this series, enjoy cozy mysteries with a paranormal twist, or Renaissance Faire themed tales, then you will enjoy this book. I'm looking forward to seeing if, in the next book, the residents of the Faire can break the curse and go their separate ways, or if they will remain trapped for the remainder of their days.

This book may also be available through the following:

Friday, September 15, 2023

"Novantis" by Megan Mackie

Veronica, crown princess & heir to the Emperor of Novantis, had secretly signed a marriage contract with Nicholas, the Duc de Montreaux. Their two houses have long been rivals, but the two of them hope to unite and end the hostilities between their families.

However when after a ball, there is an unexpected pirate attack on the Palace that kills the emperor and kidnaps Veronica, the airship she is on is struck by lightning. She and everyone else on board are presumed dead. Thus making her betrothed, Nicolas, the Prince Regent. But as she isn't dead, she soon is led to believe he set her up so that he could steal her throne. The pirates who had attacked the Palace were, after all, led by a member of his family.

I read an Advance Review Copy of this book. This steampunk story captured and held my interest from beginning to end. It is full of everything you might expect from an adventurous tale: love, betrayal, intrigue, pirates, treachery, and secrets.  What more could anyone hope to find in such a complex, well written story? I know that I really enjoyed reading this one and will be keeping my eyes open for book 2 in the series.

This book is being released as a web exclusive story on the Yonder app. If you enjoy well-written steampunk  stories, you won't want to miss this one. Ms. Mackie is an excellent storyteller, and I am looking forward to getting to read what happens next in this series. I'll definitely be keeping my eyes open for other books by this author as well. (If this book were available through Amazon, I would give it one of my rare 5-stars on its review.)

You can find this book on Yonder by following this link:

Monday, September 11, 2023

"BloodLaw" by Blaise Ramsey

Alastair Maddox is the Chicago ADA during a time when crime is running rampant. There are turf wars between Capone & other rival Mob bosses, and never mind the cops, lawyers, and judges who are on their payrolls. Prohibition Chicago was a rough time, but Alastair is determined to help clean up his city. He is not, however, prepared for Alexandra DeLane, a woman who seems to wrap most everyone around her finger with no real effort. And despite being accused of several violent killings, she somehow escapes from custody, though she seems to become more than a little obsessed with Alastair. A fact that will only cause quite a number of problems for many people. DeLane, it seems, is a vampire.

This was a book that fascinated me with its historical setting as well as its supernatural twist. One can only imagine what might happen in a book where the forces of "good" and "evil" are battling for Mob territory as well as both for and against the law. I enjoyed this story a great deal. 

As can be expected in a book involving the Mafia as well as vampires, there is more than a little violence in this book. (It was an unfortunate reality of the time period in which this book is set and would necessarily be included, even had vampires not been involved.)

I received a review copy of this book. If you enjoy historical fiction set in the 1920s prohibition era, vampire novels, or ones that involve the mafia, then I think you'll want to check this book out. I enjoyed reading it and I think you would as well.

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"Double Double Royal Trouble" <br>by Trixie Silvertale

After the witch who makes the cursed candies that trap magical creatures, causing them to remain bound to the Renaissance Faire is fo...