A Weight of Reckoning by C.S. Wachter

A Weight of Reckoning: Sequel to The Seven Words by [C. S. Wachter]

A Weight of Reckoning by C.S. Wachter is the sequel to “The Seven Words” series. This series and sequel are a fantasy series that follows the life of Prince Rayne through many difficulties and hardships even as he serves as the Chosen Light Bringer of the One.

A Weight of Reckoning, as all of the books in this series, is very much a good vs. evil story. In A Weight of Reckoning, Rayne must face evil before his long-awaited wedding can take place. The question is, “will he survive this time?”

As in all of “The Seven Words” series, A Weight of Reckoning grabbed my attention right from the start and held my attention until the very end. The characters have become like friends as I have read this series. When you follow a group of characters through five books, if the author has done their job, you feel like you really know these people and they will have become people you care about. That is what C.S. Wachter has accomplished.

A Weight of Reckoning is also full of adventure and suspense, along with a touch of romance. There are unexpected twists that will surprise you. C.S. Wachter even manages to find a way to include some humor and wit, a welcome reprieve from the struggles Prince Rayne endures.

C.S. Wachter has a way of painting pictures with words, so that the worlds in A Weight of Reckoning, and “The Seven Words” series seem real, and the character descriptions bring the characters to life, not just physically, but their personalities are all distinct as well, making them leap off the page.

I have written reviews for the previous books in the series as well. To find them simply click on the “Categories” arrow in the side bar, select “Book Reviews” and scroll until you find them.

If you enjoy Fantasy stories, good vs. evil stories, and stories with adventure and a bit of romance, you’re sure to enjoy A Weight of Reckoning and the entire “Seven Words” series by C.S. Wachter. This was C.S. Wachter’s debut series and I look forward to more to come.

 

Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater

Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater is a very unique story. It is Fantasy. It is a Regency Faerie Tale with a bit of satire. I have never read another book quite like it. This book was released on March 29, 2020 and is Olivia Atwater’s debut novel.

The story’s main character is Dora, who has been cursed by a faerie and cannot feel fear, embarrassment, or even happiness. This condition gets her into trouble more often than not until she meets Lord Elias Wilder an outspoken magician, whom most people detest but still invite him to their elegant parties and balls.

This book is very well written. The characters and plot line are well developed and interesting. The story held my interest from start to finish. I thoroughly enjoyed Dora’s verbal interactions with the other characters, and her interactions with Lord Wilder were unique and delightful.

I fully enjoyed watching Dora discover things about herself that brought her comfort. It was also touching to watch the effect she had upon the other characters throughout the story. The other character’s reactions to Dora evoked many different feelings as I read as well.

The story had some interesting twists and surprises. At times, I found the story reminiscent of a Charles Dickens tale. The story isn’t just an enjoyable, entertaining read. It made me think about people and the way they think, act, react, and treat each other.

After finishing my reading of Half a Soul, I found and read an interview that Ms. Atwater gave to a blogger. In that interview, Ms. Atwater said, “I think a good story either makes you think or else makes you feel. I think a truly fantastic story makes you do both.”

Based on that statement, I have to say that Half a Soul is a truly fantastic story.

This story will be one of my favorites for a long time to come and I look forward to reading more from Olivia Atwater. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good story, as well as to Fantasy fans, Regency fans, and Dickens’ fans. I rarely take time to reread books because there are always so many new books that keep my To Be Read List always growing, but I think that I should like to revisit this book in the future.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. This review is my honest opinion of the book.

King’s City by Jessica Marinos

   

King’s City is the long-awaited and highly anticipated second book of the “Trimont Trilogy” by Jessica Marinos. I first read the first book of this series, Traiven’s Pass, and wrote a review for it in March of 2019. You can read my review of that book here. I reread Traiven’s Pass before reading King’s City.

This is a debut series for Jessica Marinos and, in my opinion, Jessica is destined to become a great writer. The quality of the writing of both Traiven’s Pass and King’s City is outstanding. The descriptions are rich and the character’s very well developed. In addition, she draws you into the story and keeps you there.

King’s City is the continuing story of the Tavish family who live in Traiven’s Pass and the reign of the Steward King, Lord Breemore, who began his rule when King Cordell vanished twenty-six years ago. Lord Breemore resides in King’s City. Lord Breemore appears to rule with kindness and peace, but rumors of war begin to increase throughout the kingdom.

Lydia Tavish’s father was loyal to King Cordell continued to search for King Cordell throughout the first book of this trilogy. He attempted to turn the people in the kingdom back to the Book of Truth.

As King’s City begins, Lydia is a penniless outcast and is sought after as many in the kingdom seek her punishment for her recent choice. However, Lydia is bold and strong and believes what her father taught her. She faces many challenges and dangers but finds her strength in the truth.

Galen, who left his home in Dresden to participate in a tournament in the King’s City becomes renowned in his sword skills. Then a long kept secret is revealed and it turns Galen’s life upside down. He has much to consider in deciding the course of his life.

King’s City, the second book in the “Trimont Trilogy” by Jessica Marinos was just as good, if not better, than Traiven’s Pass. These two books are part of my “Favorites” list and Jessica is at the top of my list of “Favorite New Authors”. I excitedly await the third and final book of the series.

If you’d like to learn more about Jessica — her life and her writing, I had the honor of interviewing her last month. You can read that interview here.

If you enjoy books that grab you from the start and keep you turning pages; books with rich descriptions, well-developed characters, and a story line filled with tension, shocking surprises, and a bit of romance, you will not want to miss the “Trimont Trilogy” by Jessica Marinos. If you haven’t read Traiven’s Pass, I suggest you get your copy today, and if you have read it, don’t miss “King’s City”.

The Spirit of Things by Ben McQueeney

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Ben McQueeney’s debut novel will release on Amazon on April 8th. I have had the pleasure of receiving an Advanced Reader Copy in exchange for my honest review.

I have only begun reading more of the Fantasy genre in the past year, but for those of you whose favorite genre is Fantasy, I think you’re going to like “The Spirit of Things”.

“The Spirit of Things” is a unique tale of Fulco, a Hume, living in the Elphen village of Tellusm. He is a young adult who is bullied by the local thug, and who finds it difficult to fit into the Elphen village. He gets into one scrape after another, not all through his own choices.

He feels a bit awkward as he takes an interest in an Elphen girl, but a romance begins to bud between them.

When he attends a sporting event with his brother, an event his mother has tried to keep him from for years, he discovers the power of Sapience. He is fascinated by this power and begins asking questions about it. His brother helps him get a horse and he realizes he has a special way with animals as he makes a special connection with this horse. Could he have Sapience that gives him control over beasts?

Then a stranger comes to town and Fulco’s life begins to change.

Fulco’s story is exciting!

There are also three gods who watch and fight over the land of Tellusm.

Ben McQueeney has created a world that is unusual and fascinating. He has also created some very unique fantastical creatures. His characters are realistic and believable. I found it easy to relate to Fulco, and I believe most readers will find they have something in common with Fulco as well.

“The Spirit of Things” is written for young adults and adults alike. If you enjoy the Fantasy genre or have thought about checking out a Fantasy novel to see why it’s such a popular genre, I recommend you read “The Spirit of Things”. I’m sure you will enjoy it.

“The Spirit of Things” drew me in and kept me turning pages to the very end. The end promises more to come and I eagerly await Ben McQueeney’s next book.

 

The Treasure Map by Tyler Scott Hess

Book Blurb:

Jack is a 10-year-old boy ready for a joyous Christmas vacation, but as punishment for a poor report card, he is tasked with cleaning out his family’s long-forgotten attic. Inside, he finds a chest with a treasure map and a letter that transports him to another time, place, and existence.

Jack finds himself living the life of a young man named Niko, an enemy of the State of Ariel, a martyr of the Faithful, sentenced to die during the Independence Day celebrations. When an earthquake strikes, Niko finds the opportunity to escape, discovers a guide known only as the Elder, and teams up with a group of the Faithful to change history.

My Review:

I agreed to write this honest objective review and received a complimentary pre-release copy to do so. It is the first Tyler Scott Hess book I have read.

The story changes time and place every few chapters, some chapters revealing 10-year-old Jack’s life working on cleaning up the attic while missing out on some of his family’s Christmas activities and being fascinated by the treasure map and letter. Other chapters take us into the time and place of the treasure map and letter where the Faithful are in trouble, in prison. Then an earthquake strikes and Niko finds the opportunity to escape. He discovers a guide known only as the Elder and finds a small group of the Faithful who also escaped during the earthquake. They concoct a plan to change history.

I enjoyed this story. Jack is a delightful, typical 10-year-old boy, and the story of Niko’s struggle is believabe and a little frightening.

The story grabbed my attention from the beginning and kept my attention until the end. Jack learned a lesson and learned more about his family. Tyler Scott Hess did a good job of tying Jack and Niko’s stories together as well.

This would be a great story to read aloud to your children. It’s a good story that is suitable for elementary age children through adult, although there is one murder/death near the end, but it is not dwelt upon and it is not graphic.

I recommend this book to families and to those who enjoy stories that include Christmas. I look forward to reading more of Mr. Hess’s books.

Unraveling by Sara Ella

Unraveling (The Unblemished Trilogy Book 2) by [Ella, Sara]

Unraveling by Sara Ella is the second book in her “Unblemished” series. It is a Fantasy story for Young Adults and Adults.

If you want to read my review of the first book, Unblemished, click here.

Unraveling is an amazing adventure filled with danger and unexpected twists and turns. It kept me turning pages. Near the end, it had me sitting on pins and needles, actually afraid to see how it would end.

Sara Ella’s books are incredibly well written with very few, if any, editing errors. Her characters are well developed, relatable, and realistic. I got so caught up in the lives of these characters. They have become friends I look forward to spending time with.

Sara Ella does a great job of world building as well, and I love how her fantasy world is so similar to New York City in physicality and a few other ways as well. And since New York City is where Eliyana’s journey began, it’s cool to see the parallels between the two places.

I loved Unblemished, and Unraveling certainly didn’t disappoint me. However, those pins and needles and that fear I had as I faced the end, made me question whether or not to continue turning pages. I was so afraid I would hate the ending, but I kept going, and I am happy to say that I didn’t hate the ending.

You see, there are two love interests for Eliyana in the story, Joshua and Ky, and I am strongly routing for one particular man (no, I won’t say who). I fear heartbreak when I reach the end of book three, but I cannot wait to dig into it anyway, with high hopes that my man will win.

So if you love great fantasy stories about realistic characters who face danger and struggles, and that have a strong romantic feature, you’ll love Unblemished and Unraveling.

Flash Fiction Friday: The Soulmate Statue

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Photo by Discovering Film on Unsplash

Hunter and Emma strolled hand-in-hand through the city of Raeledo. Hunter planned to kill a Catoblepas over the weekend to prove he was capable of protecting and providing for a wife. Hunter pulled Emma closer and wrapped his arm around her lower back. Emma smiled up at him. He lowered his head and kissed her lips, soft and slow. Then his lips traveled down her jawline and neck. When his lips brushed the hollow of her collarbone, she pushed away.

“Hunter, we’re in the middle of the street.”

“So what? You know you like when I kiss that spot.” He wiggled his eyebrows at her.

She giggled, took his hand in hers once again, and leaned against him. “Come on. I want to see the statue in the middle of the square.”

“You really believe the legend surrounding that old statue?”

She took a deep breath and released it slowly. “I don’t know, but it’s a wonderfully romantic idea.”

“Don’t you think if the legend was real, something would’ve happened by now?”

Emma shrugged and they kept walking.

They entered the square at twilight, the sky alight with brilliant pinks, purples, and a bit of red. Emma’s eyes fell on the statue. “I didn’t know it would be so beautiful. The rose color enfolding it gives her a lifelike blushed skin tone.”

Hunter raised his eyes from Emma to the four hundred year old statue. It was in mint condition. The Harlequin Transdocrocite the artist had sculpted it from was pristine yellow, and the pink light shining on her face certainly made her appear lifelike. His eyes slid over the contour of her jawline to her full lips, then continued down her slender neck and well-rounded body, down her shapely legs to her bare arched feet. The artist had sculpted her dress to look as though it were being blown backward by a strong wind, causing it to cling and reveal the front of her body. The long pin-curls streamed toward the back of her head, and she reached out with her right hand.

“She’s amazing. It’s so sad. She’s been here lonely and waiting all these years. Hunter … Hunter?”

He jerked his head from the statue. He blinked to clear his vision and found it difficult not to return his gaze to the statue. “What is it Em?”

She pulled her phone cam-puter out of her back pocket. “You’ve got to hold her hand and let me take your picture.”

“Oh, I don’t think that’s a good idea.” Hunter shook his head.

“Why not? Are you afraid you might be her soulmate?”

Hunter emitted a nervous laugh. “Of course not … but what happens to us, if I am?” His eyes locked with Emma’s.

After a minute, Emma slapped him on the arm. “Of all the men that must’ve touched her hand over the past four hundred years, you think you’re the one? Now come                          on, take her hand.”

Hunter looked at the statue again. The pink no longer blushed her cheeks. He slid his sweaty palms down his pants, cleared his throat, and touched his fingertips to the statue’s.

Emma dropped her phone cam-puter and her lower jaw went slack.

Hunter turned to look at the statue. The podium was empty. A shadow fell over him. He looked up just in time to stretch out his arms. Oomph! A woman landed in his arms causing him to bend in half. He managed not to drop her then straighten into an upright position again. He looked into the eyes that had belonged to a statue just moments ago—eyes, confused and startled. Hunter helped her to stand, but she clung to his arm. Her soft touch on his arm caused an electrical current to jolt up his arm and down his back. His heart rate rose. He turned toward the woman and raised his free hand to cup her face.

“The legend is real.” He whispered.

She turned her face into his hand and kissed his palm, then her eyes met his. “I’ve waited such a long time for you.” Her voice fluctuated in pitch and she spoke with a rhythm. It was like a song.

“What’s your name?”

“Donatella. And you are?”

“Hunter … you’re soulmate.” He drew her into a tight embrace, a feeling he’d never known flowing through him; an insatiable craving for this woman and a fierce protectiveness toward her.

The moment was broken by a guttural, ear-splitting sob that came from the depths of the soul. Emma’s soul.

Hunter looked over the shoulder of the woman in his arms. Emma was on her knees, wailing, with tears coursing down her cheeks. He caught her gaze.

He mouthed, “I’m sorry.” Then he lifted Donatella in his arms again and walked away.