The Maker #Bookreview

36642652First paragraph: It starts as a half-moon with a braided cord hanging from the bottom. Wavy strings grow from the cord. Tentacles. Kind of looks like a jellyfish. I add more curvy lines until they’re a thick maze slithering down the page. I close my eyes, focusing on the image in my mind. A lidless eye glares at me from the jellyfish’s back. With a sinking heart, I trace out every creepy detail.

About the story: Nate loves to draw. He gets the passion from his dad, who disappeared without a word six months ago. Before the story opens, Nate had come in possession of a drawing binder. He has no idea how it got to be on his windowsill. Regardless, it doesn’t take long for Nate to begin having strange visions, which he draws inside the binder. To make things even stranger in Nate’s life, strange creatures come in the night to steal the binder and throws Nate into the adventure of a lifetime. Not everything is all fun and games, though. The lives of planets and his parents rest on his shoulders—and he’s only a thirteen-year-old kid.

My thoughts: This was definitely a fun story. I’ve read a lot of books where I need to turn a few pages before I truly get into it, but this one sucked me in right away. The writing was taut, the adventure original and not a single slow paragraph to be found. I was amazed. Truly. This is definitely a story young teens would love; however, I believe any lover—whether teen or adult—of science fiction and fantasy would adore it. I know I did. Reading this book started my new year off on the right note.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Does it interest you? Buy it here!

A little bit about the author: With the launch of my middle grade sci-fi novel The Maker, the release of my new illustrated chapter book Charlie Sparrow and the Book of Flight, and the re-release of Charlie Sparrow and the Secret of Flight, 2017 has been a busy year.

Besides writing, I enjoy spending time with my family, walking in nature, collecting records, reading, and travel (some pictures from my trips to Southeast Asia and Africa are featured on my author website http://www.dfandersonauthor.com).

I live in Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, with my wife, daughter, and tabby cat, Neko.

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Retaliation (The Praegressus Project Book 3) #bookreview

  • Title: Retaliation (The Praegressus Project Book 3)Retaliation (The Praegressus Project Book 3) by [Hodges, Aaron]
  • Author: Aaron Hodges
  • Print Length: 222
  • Publication Date: August 22, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy

You always know you’re reading a good book when you’ve finished it in one sitting without realizing it. Such was the case with me and Retaliation, the third installment of Aaron Hodges’ Praegressus Project series. Chris and his band of renegades are still on the run from the government. As to be expected, they are wary of who to trust, but they know they’re going to have to trust someone sometime if they are going to survive the nightmare they’ve been sucked inside.

It’d been a while since I’ve read Renegades, so I couldn’t remember how it ended, but thankfully, as always, we’re fed everything we need to know throughout this third novel. Piece by piece, I’d begun to recall the events of the previous two books. Book three feeds us a lot of action that keeps you flying across the pages, eager for more.

In my opinion, with every book Hodges’ puts out, he gets better in his writing. I do wonder, though how The Praegressus Project can be stretched into a total of five books before it starts to become too many in a series. However, I do love the premise, the action, and the characters, so I care enough to keep reading and find out. I also find that the Chead is an interesting concept. Scary, too. Even scarier that the government is so corrupt that they will stop at nothing to keep the truth behind the Chead a secret—including murder.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

Aaron Hodges

Aaron Hodges was born in 1989 in the small town of Whakatane, New Zealand. He studied for five years at the University of Auckland, completing a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology and Geography, and a Masters of Environmental Engineering. After working as an environmental consultant for two years, he grew tired of office work and decided to quit his job and see the world. Two years later, his travels have taken him through South East Asia, Canada, the USA, Mexico, Central America, and South America.

Today, his adventures continue…

Who Doesn’t Like Free?

NYT bestselling author Aaron Hodges has an AMAZING deal for his long-time fans, new fans, and soon-to-be fans. If you’re a science fiction/fantasy lover, I encourage you to check out his latest series. After all, he’s giving the first three of his five-part series away for FREE! But hurry! The clock will run out!

In case you haven’t heard about The Pregressus Project series , let us tell you a little bit about it!


From the author:

The United States have fallen. A new power has risen in North America, but now a terrifying virus is spreading across the countryside. Once infected, people change, mutating into superhuman creatures known as the Chead. Wherever they walk, death follows. Desperate to defend its citizens, the government launches the Praegressus Project – an experimental program to enhance the human race.

Elizabeth Flores was just a normal girl – until the Chead slaughtered her parents and made her a fugitive. With winter approaching she seeks refuge in the city of Sacramento, but the hunters are waiting. Abducted off the streets, she’s spirited away to a facility deep in the Californian mountains. There, Liz wakes in an iron cage – and she’s not alone.

In the opposite cage, Christopher Sanders stands wrongfully accused of treason. Along with Liz, he has just become a volunteer in the Praegressus Project. Stripped of their rights, they will soon learn there is little separating humanity from the monsters they seek to destroy. The two must work together if they want to survive, but even then, their chances are slim. Of course, only the lucky get to die.

Blending the insane experiments of Stranger Things and the haunting dystopia of the Hunger Games, fans will love this thrilling new series. Discover a future where the powerful rule without mercy, and nothing is ever as it seems. With hints of YA Dystopia, Genetic Scifi, Urban Fantasy and just a touch of Romance, the Praegressus Project truly has something for everyone. Enter a new world with New York Times Bestselling Author Aaron Hodges.


 Here are my reviews for the first two in the series

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Rebirth review
Renegades review

I will be posting the next two installments on this website soon, but don’t wait to get your free copies!

Want more info? Check out these links below! It’ll take you directly to the Amazon website!
——————————————————————————————————————————————-
Free!
———–
Rebirth
Renegades
Retaliation

Not free, but still awesome!
———————————————
Rebellion

Available Dec. 24 (Just in time for Christmas for fantasy fans on your list!)
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Retribution

Unelmoija: The Dreamshifter #bookreview @elleboca

  • Title:  Unelmoija: The DreamshifterUnelmoija: The Dreamshifter (Weeia Book 1) by [Boca, Elle]
  • Author: Elle Boca
  • Print Length: 208
  • Publication Date: November 24, 2014
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction

Amy is Weeia. She doesn’t know much about the Weeia race, only that they are superhuman with special abilities. In Unelmoija: Dreamshifter, Amy is beginning to learn more about her own Weeia ability. As she discovers more about her powers, she learns someone is trying to kill her. To save her life, Amy must rely on a mysterious stranger who both attracts her and repels her, as well as her father she’d never met.

After reading Elle Boca’s Weeia Marshalls series, then reading this book, I can honestly say that she’s grown as a writer. Unelmoija: Dreamshifter is her first novel and also the book that introduces us to the Weeia universe. I liked the idea behind the Unelmoija universe, and I also liked most of the characters. The only thing about Amy that I wasn’t too crazy about was that it seemed as though she was a little too happy-go-lucky. Even in danger, I couldn’t really feel her trepidation. I also felt she struck a friendship with Duncan a little too quickly after deciding that she didn’t trust him. I think it would have been better and more intriguing if Amy and Duncan showed their obvious attraction, but struggled with feelings that were developing.

When I first started Dreamshifter, Amy was acting like normal people do, then the narrative throws in something about a kidnapping of her and her mother, which, as the story progresses, never got fully explained. I had gone back to the very beginning of the book to the table of contents and began to flip through, thinking I may have missed the prologue or something. But, I didn’t, which made me feel as though I was thrown into something I should have already known. Sometimes the way the dialogue was written confused me.

*For example: “I can see your mind is set.” I’d won the first battle. I kept quiet, as the situation was uncertain.*

In that scenario, it’s Duncan who is speaking. Then, in the same paragraph, it jumps into Amy’s first-person narrative. There were a lot of instances about that.

I think this was a decent beginning to the series. It isn’t my favorite, but I did like the premise. And as I said earlier, Elle Boca does grow as a writer. All series needs something to get the ground running, and Dreamshifter does the trick. I would be interested to see where Amy goes now that she’s learned more about Weeia and her powers. Maybe the questions I had in the first book are embellished in the ones after.

Overall Rate: 3 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Smells Like Weeia Spirit #bookreview @elleboca

  • Title: Smells Like Weeia SpiritSmells Like Weeia Spirit (The Weeia Marshals Book 3) by [Boca, Elle]
  • Author: Elle Boca
  • Print Length: 350
  • Publisher: Poyeen Publishing
  • Publication Date: March 24, 2016
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy

Marshal Danni Metreaux is back with handsome Sebastien Poyager and this time they have to uncover several mysteries that intertwine with one another. Beginning with an incident at the Académie Superieur de Goin, Danni and Sebastien soon realize that something deeper is at play when more and more Weeia begins acting strangely.

As always, Danni is independent, snarky, strong-willed, and likable. I found her even more so in this book since she has finally settled into her life as a Weeia marshal in Paris. In the beginning, we see how much of a kind heart she has when she assists a family in need although it goes against regulations. Her independent attitude does change, as it would for many women, the more she becomes involved with her boyfriend, Iaen.  Sebastien is a definite worthy friend to have…he’s smooth talking, handsome and loyal to his family and friends.

If you’re worried about reading the third book in the series, having not read the first two, don’t, because within the dialogue and narrative, all the things you need to know will be explained. However, I found several unnecessary repetitions about what Weeia marshals do, or who a character is…I’d skim over because I’d remember it from earlier in the same story.

My main problem with this book isn’t even the plot point…it was Danni’s relationship with Iaen. They meet in the second novel, Weeia on My Mind, and quickly fall for one another. As I read through the passages including Iaen, I found him too…perfect. It would have been nice to have a little bit of annoyance from Iaen. After all, several times, Danni has to bail on him when he’s planning something special. Sure, it’s her job, but, still. The mysterious Iaen we met in the second book is all smiles and understanding every single time Danni runs off.

Some of the dialogue, or even the narrative, can be a bit cheesy for my tastes and not really fit the characters I’ve come to know, but the story behind it is still an enjoyable read for any fantasy fan.

Overall Rate: 4 out of 5 stars

Biography

Elle Boca

Elle is the author of the Weeia urban fantasy series about superhumans. The Unelmoija series is set in Miami. In the Garden of Weeia, a novella, is set in Portland, Maine, and her newest Marshals Series is set in Paris, France. Growing up the only child of a monkey mother and a rabbit father she learned to keep herself entertained and spend time reading.

Seekers of Earth (The Guardian Knights of Terra Book 1) #bookreview

  • Title: Seekers of the Earth (The Guardian Knights of Terra Book 1)Seekers of Earth (The Guardian Knights of Terra Book 1) by [Pratt, Kyle]
  • Author: Kyle Pratt
  • Print Length: 186
  • Publication Date: March 17, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy, Space Opera

Let me start by saying that Seekers of the Earth is a novella, rather than a full-length novel. It serves as an introduction to its sequel, Recall the Earth.  In just 186 pages, the novella opens with action and does not slow down the pace. Lucas Baldwin is on his first deep space training mission when he encounters a girl that may or may not be crazy. When Lucas learns that the girl is speaking English, a dead language, he finds himself sucked into a web of treason that may get himself, the girl, and others killed. Despite the dangers he is facing, Lucas plans on figuring out what is fact and what is fiction.

Seekers of the Earth was a well-written prequel to the series. There was a lot going on in a short amount of pages, but doesn’t leave you confused as to who was who or what was going on. As I read, my mind was filled with questions which gradually became answered.

Be warned for those who don’t like cliffhangers. This novella does leave you hanging, but fear not…the book is already available on Amazon! I highly recommend this…if you enjoy science fiction and space opera, you won’t be able to put it down.

Overall Rate: 4 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

Kyle Pratt

Kyle Pratt is a bestselling author of speculative fiction. His latest full-length novel, Braving the Storms, is the third book in the Strengthen What Remains series.

Through Many Fires, the first book in the post-apocalyptic series was released in paperback, Kindle and on Audible in August 2013. Within two weeks the novel appeared on the Kindle Science Fiction Post-Apocalyptic list, reaching #10, and reached #1 on the list on December 2, 2014. Through Many Fires has earned its way to the #1 spot on the Kindle Dystopian and Military list, and #39 on the Mystery, Thriller, and Suspense list.

Kyle grew up in the mountains of Colorado and earned an Associate in Arts degree from Mesa State College in Grand Junction. When money for college ran low he enlisted in the United States Navy as a Cryptologic Technician. “I thought I would do four years and then use my veteran’s benefits to go back to college,” he once said.

His first assignment was with a U.S. Navy unit at the Royal Air Force base in Edzell, Scotland. While on leave in Israel he met Lorraine from Plymouth, Devon, England and married her the next year. Together they spent the remainder of his twenty-year naval career traveling across the United States from Virginia to Hawaii and on to Guam, Japan and beyond.

Even before he retired from the service he wrote short stories. In July of 2012 his debut novel, Titan Encounter, a science fiction space adventure, came out on Kindle and later in paperback. His second book, Final Duty – The Speculative Fiction Novelette was released in January of 2013.

Today, Kyle and Lorraine live on a small farm in Western Washington State.

Website: http://www.kyleonkindle.com

In the Company of Wolves (Of Witches and Werewolves Book 2) #BookReview

  • Title: In the Company of Wolves (Of Witches and Werewolves)In the Company of Wolves (Of Witches and Werewolves Book 2) by [Barclay, Cory]
  • Author: Cory Barclay
  • Print Length: 350
  • Publication Date: September 15, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle, Paperback
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Supernatural, Science Fiction, Historical Fiction, Thriller

In the Company of Wolves is aptly named. We return a few years after the events in its predecessor, Devil in the Countryside. We already know a few of the characters and are introduced to a new set of interesting ones. The entirety of the book follows the perspective of four in particular: Rowaine, a female pirate; Gustav, a man in the search of revenge; Sybil, a refuge trying to earn a safe life with her family; and Hugo, Sybil’s younger brother who is trying to find his way in the world. Each character wants something and in order to get something, they must fight for survival, bloodshed and betrayal.

I must say I enjoyed the first book a tad bit more, however, this one still deserves the rating of five stars. It kept a steady pace, and offered a few surprises you don’t see coming. As I did in the first book, I enjoyed Barclay’s way of descriptions. It’s so vivid, it’s as if I’m seeing the scene unfold.

My only issue is that sometimes the obvious tends to be stated through the narrative. Maybe it’s just me, but for example, in the beginning, one of the characters begins stuttering when he speaks. After I read his dialogue, I thought, “OK, he stutters.” Then in the next sentence, the narrative explains the fact that he stutters. There were a few more instances, but it wasn’t so much that it would knock any points off.

As always, the characters were well-developed and I enjoyed learning about most of them, especially Hugo. As a young boy trying to find his place in the world, he goes in a direction that surprises him and he’s unsure about. I’m sure many of us can relate to that in real life.

It’s not needed to read the first book before this one, though I highly recommend it. While, yes, the first one may have its flaws, it was a truly excellent introduction to the series. In the Company of Wolves, however, does give you the background you’ll need to appreciate the story.

Overall Rate: 5 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

Cory Barclay

As far back as he can remember, Cory Barclay has always loved the “big picture” questions. How much knowledge did humanity lose when the Library of Alexandria was burned down? Why has the concept of Heaven remained intact, in one form or another, throughout most of human history and how has it impacted life on Earth?

And even before that, when he first began writing stories in grade school, he’s been fascinated with histories and mysteries. Whether Norse mythology, the Dark Ages, or the conquests of great leaders, Cory’s been that kid who wants to know what’s shaped our world and write about it. Especially the great unsolved mysteries.

So Devil in the Countryside was a natural for him.

Born and raised in San Diego, he graduated from University of California, Santa Cruz, where he studied Creative Writing and Modern Literary Studies. He’s also a songwriter and guitarist, and – no surprise – many of his songs explore the same topics he writes about – the great mysteries of our crazy world.

Devil in the Countryside is his second novel and he’s hard at work on its sequel.

Weeia on My Mind #bookreview @elleboca

  • Title: Weeia on My Mind
  • Author: Elle Boca
  • Print Length: 307
  • Publisher: Poyeen Publishing
  • Publication Date: July 31, 2016
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy

When we first met Danni in Gypsies, Tramps and Weeia, she was in training at the Marshall Academy. Now she’s graduated and has been spending the last seven months in Paris on her first assignment. Her boss doesn’t like that she’s been assigned to work under him. She’s been living in a rodent-infested apartment until she’s given the opportunity to upgrade. And her first encounter with a new recruit, Sebastien, leaves much to be desired if you ask her.

While training Sebastien, they come across a case where an affluent couple’s necklace and painting were stolen. During their interview with the couple, Danni and Sebastien find that they have a detached attitude toward the theft. Once the items are mysteriously returned, the couple still seems to not care about the whys or whos their possessions were taken.

Aside from all that, Danni reconnects with a former interest and falls head first. He’s what most every girl wants to bring home to Mom and Dad: a bad boy.

I have to say I enjoy the first book in the Weeia Marshals series, Gypsies, Tramps and Weeia, the most. But that’s not to say I didn’t enjoy this one. I did. Weeia on My Mind kept me turning the pages even when I needed to put it aside. I loved the action, the mystery, and romance was a big part of the story as well.

Danni is a character to adore. She’s snarky, witty and fun. She knows her stuff and despite what others think of her, she’s out to prove any haters in her life that she knows her job and that she can do it well. Of course, she has a lot of trouble doing so, but luckily, after an awkward first meet with her new trainee, she found a fellow Weeia who actually doesn’t treat her like she’s weed to destroy.

Weeia on My Mind has just about everything you’d want in a story. Romance, action, intrigue, betrayal…you name it, and it’s there. It has a much darker tone than in the previous book but any fan of urban fantasy is bound to enjoy.

In my opinion, there is no need to read the books in order. But I say if you want to pick up a copy of Elle Boca’s novel, start with Gypsies, Tramps and Weeia, the first in the series. You’ll get to know Danni a little and by the time you read Weeia on My Mind, it’ll be like having a cup of coffee with a friend.

Overall Rate: 4 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

Elle Boca

Elle is the author of the Weeia urban fantasy series about superhumans. The Unelmoija series is set in Miami. In the Garden of Weeia, a novella, is set in Portland, Maine, and her newest Marshals Series is set in Paris, France. Growing up the only child of a monkey mother and a rabbit father she learned to keep herself entertained and spend time reading.

The Sixth Gate (The Gate Trilogy Book 1) #BookReview @ktmunson

  • Title:  The Sixth Gate (The Gate Trilogy Book 1)
  • Author: KT Munson
  • Print Length: 303
  • Publication Date: July 7, 2017
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  •  Language: English
  • Formats:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult, Dark Fantasy

As usual, K.T. Munson does well at creating a brand new world that we can get lost in. She definitely has a knack…it goes without saying…after all, her blog is entitled “Creating Worlds with Words.” Her worlds she creates are characters in itself, which is great in fantasy since the only way we can hope to imagine what we’re reading is to delve into the author’s words. After reading several of K.T. Munson’s novels, she’s never failed at delivering.

I read the prequel and was interested in learning more about the heroine, Elisabeth. Unfortunately, she didn’t show up until several chapters in. Although I knew that the story was primarily about her, I wondered where she was. After I did read several chapters containing her, I found the adult version (in the prequel, she’s a child) of Elisabeth very likable. She’s more grown up, but the curiosity of the child is still evident.

It took halfway through reading before the story really picked up. The most I knew was that something big was going to go down…eventually.  I could only tell that Ki was destined to destroy Elisabeth with his Sin Eater because she was half evil. There were a lot of other plot points to focus on and to remember throughout the course of the novel. I knew eventually everything would come together, whether it would be in this book or the ones following. Knowing that it was going to be a trilogy, I wasn’t sure how it would end. Thankfully, it all was tied together in a nice little bow but had room to grow for the sequels.

The other supporting/main characters were created well and flowed off of each other. I’m looking forward to getting to know them in the coming sequels. While the first book of the series was slow in taking off, I’m hoping to get even more action. I would also like to see fewer plots because this book had so many primary characters and so much going on, it was just hard to pinpoint where they were being led. Of course, I believe that was the purpose. Either way, I can’t wait to find out where K.T. will lead us in the other two books in her new Gate trilogy. But do we really have to wait until 2019, as promised at the end of the book?

Overall Rate: 4 out of 5 stars

*For more book reviews, click here.*

Biography

K.T. Munson

K.T. Munson is a freelance author. First published at 5 years old in the young writers conference, she has pursued writing ever since. She maintains a blog creatingworldswithwords.wordpress.com that is about writing and her novels. She was born and raised in the last frontier, the great state of Alaska.

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