Tag Archives: Book Review

Ebba-Viva Fairisles: Immortal Plunder Review

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Blurb from Goodreads:

There are three types of people in the Exosian Realm—males, females, and pirates.

I’m a pirate. One with six overprotective fathers for a crew. And if I’m telling the honest truth, not just the pirate truth, having so many fathers is working pretty well for me so far.

When I’m caught eavesdropping on the pirates of Malice, they retaliate with violence, and my fathers become set on revenge. But simple payback cascades into shattering misfortune.

Unexplainable magical happenings and impossible creatures propel me toward a fate much darker than stealing plunder. A terrible beast drags forth horrible truths of my fathers’ pasts which call my entire life into question. Now, my sheltered upbringing is swelling into a furious storm that I must, for the first time in seventeen years, navigate without my crew.

An intense russet-haired landlubber seeks to help me. A savvy silver-eyed Malice pirate strives to hinder me. But the further I drift, the more I wonder—am I helping or hindering myself?

Can I stand on my own two feet to claim victory?

And if so. . .what will that victory cost?

Prepare to sail into a realm of gritty high-stakes adventure, swashbuckling characters, forgotten magic, and slow-burn romance. A story full of heart, with a large twist of humor, scroll up and one-click to discover this exciting new tale by USA Today Bestselling author, Kelly St Clare, today!

My Review:

Immortal Plunder is an absolutely fantastic read. It has everything one could want when it comes to a novel surrounding pirates. And it’s done in a manner that engulfs you so much that you feel as if you’re actually there with the crew. From the very first page you’re transported into the world created by Kelly St. Clare.

You feel Ebba-Viva’s frustration with other pirates as they belittle her six fathers. You feel her turmoil as things go awry and she must figure out what to do. You feel her stomach churn as she’s trapped in a carriage with a lady that just wants to change her into a ‘proper lady’. The writing is so beautifully done that you feel all the characters emotions with them and want to be by their side as they go on their journey throughout Immortal Plunder.

I highly recommend this novel and series to anyone that loves pirates. It’s absolutely brilliant.

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Review of Please Don’t Tell my Parents I’m a Supervillain

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Blurb:

Penelope Akk wants to be a superhero. She’s got superhero parents. She’s got the ultimate mad science power, filling her life with crazy gadgets even she doesn’t understand. She has two super-powered best friends. In middle school, the line between good and evil looks clear.

In real life, nothing is that clear. All it takes is one hero’s sidekick picking a fight, and Penny and her friends are labeled supervillains. In the process, Penny learns a hard lesson about villainy: She’s good at it.

Criminal masterminds, heroes in power armor, bottles of dragon blood, alien war drones, shapeshifters and ghosts, no matter what the super powered world throws at her, Penny and her friends come out on top. They have to. If she can keep winning, maybe she can clear her name before her mom and dad find out.

My Review:

Five Stars

Please don’t tell my parents I’m a Super Villain by Richard Roberts was a lot more comical than I originally pinned it to be. And I absolutely loved that about this book. There was the right balance of action and comedic relief that you almost forgot it was thirteen year old kids you were reading about. You forgot that it was children who were outsmarting adult super villains and giving them a run-for-their-money. The villain community and hero community had no idea what hit them when the Inscrutable Machine surfaced, and to be honest I don’t think the Inscrutable Machine did either- at first.
In the beginning we watch as Penny yearns to get her super powers, and what kid wouldn’t want to have their super powers. But the real kicker is that in the world that Roberts created the kids grow into their powers and don’t get them until they are a certain age. So in a weird way it sort of works like puberty, and that’s a horrible analogy, but it’s actually rather accurate. Because from what I’ve gathered from reading this novel is that most heroes started gaining their super powers in their teen years, and had unlocked their full potential around their early twenties. So they go through a super power puberty, so to speak.
Penny gets a flash of her abilities and she’s super excited, but than her parents crush her with the news of super hero puberty and that she may not see her full potential for a few more years. Well she isn’t satisfied with this answer, and I’m quite glad for that. Because if she was satisfied with that answer the story wouldn’t have went in the direction that it did and Penny wouldn’t have unlocked her potential as early as she did. Though she may have ended up on the right side of the playing field too.
Through most of the book I was hoping the Inscrutable Machine could turn good and be the super heroes that Penny so desperately wants to be, but I think the group is too good at being bad. And in all honesty, I’d hate to see them turn good. It’s just to fun to watch this group be mischievous and outsmart the adults. They are just too good at it. Which is what makes the book so enjoyable. These kids are brilliant and work so well together, they are like a well-oiled clock that works perfectly and nothing can break its sync. Even when they are faced with trials they don’t know how to face they come out on top, which proves their friendship and wit.
I can’t wait to continue reading more of Penny and her friend’s journey and hope that they stay on the wrong side of things. We have enough good guys to look up to, it’s time for some fun villains for a change.

Review of Steampunk Fairy Tales

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Blurb:

A toyshop owner builds a set of magic clockwork dolls that delight a factory town. A three-inch tall samurai faces a giant iron ogre with only a sewing needle and a coin. A scientist seeks an antidote to his formula gone wrong, with the help of his partner’s beautiful daughter.

All of these stories and more are included in Steampunk Fairy Tales. Written by authors from three different continents, every enchanting tale combines the futuristic Victorian concept of steam and fashion with memorable stories, from the recognizable “Jack and the Beanstalk”, to other popular and unfamiliar works from Germany, France, Italy and Japan.

With steam driven gadgets such as mechanical goggles, hoverboards, and an orchestra of automatons. Steampunk Fairy Tales is a charming and unique collection of works for current lovers of the genre, and those just diving in.

My Review:

Five Stars

I love steampunk and was excited when I found this amazing collection. And the collection held up to being amazing and exactly what I wanted.

Each tale was wonderfully done and left you craving the next. And I absolutely love how at the end each writer described what story there study was derived from because some I wasn’t sure if as I was reading through. I think them telling this at the end was a brilliant idea and I’m glad they did because it allowed the readers to learn about stories they may not have previously known.

I’d say my favorite in this collection is the first story about the toy maker and his magical dolls. The story reminded me a lot of one of my favorite movies, Mr. Moratorium’s Wonder Emporium.

The Water Balloon Gang Book Review

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Blurb:

A liquor store robbery (even if it was accidental) wasn’t mentioned on the list of potential activities when a twelve-year-old John Redstand joined The Water Balloon Gang that hot summer’s morning.

One of the funniest short stories you will ever read! Teetering right on the dividing line between: “Yeah, I can just picture those kids getting into that,” and, “No way in heck did that really happened.”

Take a first person journey in this fictionalized chronicle about a hilarious adventure that takes place during a single, calamitous day in the life of our young protagonist.

My Review:

Five Stars

The Water Balloon Gang is a funny tale of kids making mischief. We’ve all been there a time or two where the older kids want to do something that isn’t right and know that we can get into a lot of trouble if our parents found out what we did. In this stories case the younger kids go along with the older kids on a trip that turns out both funny and slightly illegal.

I can’t say I’ve ever been in the main characters place, but have followed some older kids into doing some pretty weird things; like jumping off of the roof of a house once. So, I can completely sympathize with him on wanting to run with the big kids and hang out with them. I used to be that same twelve year old kid, just wanting to be accepted by the teenagers in my neighborhood.

Even more so I can relate to the water balloon scene. Though, in my youth it wasn’t water balloons it was water guns, and we weren’t doing what they did in the book. Instead, we chased each other through the woods trying to shoot each other, not that that pertains to this book at all because they aren’t throwing the balloons at each other. Instead, they are being really mischievous with the balloons and the situation that proceeds afterwards is quite hilarious.

In the end this short story made me reminisce on childhood memories and the things I was fond of in my youth. The Water Balloon Gang made me realize I wasn’t the only kid that ran with those older than me and sometimes found myself in situations I either didn’t want to be in or ones that turned out to really shape my life and who I am.

It’s a heartfelt story of a twelve year old just having fun, he wants to be around the older kids, but in the end he just wants to be twelve and do things that a twelve year old does. And in the end he went home and did the same thing I would do every day after hanging out with my friends, go home and watch cartoons.

I highly recommend this wonderful short story by John Redstand and look forward to reading more of his heartwarming tales.

Driving Grandpa Book Review

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Blurb:

What do you get when you combine a hard-nosed WWII vet, a crazy stray dog, a pickup, and a string of foreclosed houses? The answer is a story that will playfully slam your nose against the proverbial passenger-side window at every unexpected turn. In this fictionalized memoir, author John Redstand takes readers on a rollicking tour of the last few months of his grandfather’s life. It’s an adventure you don’t want to miss.

A contract worker hired to clean out abandoned properties during the housing market crash of 2008, the narrator happily adopts double duty as chauffeur for Grandpa, who (despite his ornery protestations) is not allowed to drive anymore. These two simple tasks collide in a perfect storm of one humorous calamity after another.

Woven between the daily adventures of cleaning up supposedly vacant foreclosures, attempting to renew Grandpa’s license, and pursuing a decades gone by female counterpart, are Grandpa’s amusing and often absurd stories of World War II. An airplane mechanic stationed in Australia and the Pacific during the war, Grandpa fills their commutes with tales of stranded submarines, earthquake bombs, run-ins with Australian wildlife, and a disagreeable commanding officer.

Behind the story’s humor breathes a warm and touching ode to family, patriotism, and the Greatest Generation. Not so much of an elegy as an attempt to see the world through Grandpa’s peculiar and remarkable eyes, Driving Grandpa offers an amusing and endearing slice of life that is sure to bring a smile.

My Review:

Five Stars

Driving Grandpa is the most heart-warming book I’ve read in a really, really long time. The story reminded me so much of spending time with my own grandparent’s and hearing all of their stories about them growing up. Especially, my own grandpa who was in the military. I was always that kid that sat cross-legged on the floor on pins-and-needles as my grandpa told me his old military stories.

The story feels so real and you feel like you’re actually there listening to these conversations, that you’re actually a part of the story. You feel yourself wanting to know the same questions that John asks his grandfather. And maybe that’s because it’s based off of real-life events and situations. It makes you yearn to call up your grandparents and listen to their stories, no matter how many times you’ve heard them already.

Driving Grandpa is written in short chapters and flows perfectly. Each chapter leads you to the next and you aren’t left wondering what’s going on, or confused on a time frame. You know exactly where you are when the chapter picks up and know exactly what is going on.

Driving Grandpa is a beautiful story about a grandpa who is just telling his stories to his grandson. He’s just wanting to spend time with the people he loves and cares for and is just trying to instill wisdom onto them. He doesn’t want to go to the nursing home, which is a lot of our grandparents. He wants to live the rest of his life in his own house going to help his grandson on his odd jobs for the bank.

Then you get to the end and the one thing happens that no one wants to happen. We all want to think that our grandparents are going to live forever and that they are always going to be there for us. And the sad truth is, this isn’t the case. We all pass away sooner or later and we all leave behind loved ones. As soon as I got to the last page my heart broke. I’d grown to love the older gentlemen and portrayed him as my own grandfather in so many scenes and then it happened, and it all came rushing at me like a freight train, the reality we all eventually face.

The story is humorous and very honest at some points. Sometimes you find yourself laughing at certain scenes and other times you find yourself in awe at the honesty. You never know which way a chapter is going to go, and it keeps you on your toes until the very end. You’re left hanging off the edge of your seat as if you’re actually there listening to the old war veteran telling stories of his hay-day.

My condolences to John and his family in losing a brilliant man who was an amazing story-teller. I’m so blessed to read a story about your grandfather and can’t imagine how it feels to lose a grandparent. Thank you for sharing your last few months with your grandpa with us. He sounded like an awesome man and a hoot to be around.

I look forward to more great things from John Redstand.

Insanity (Mad in Wonderland) Book Review

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Blurb:

After accidentally killing everyone in her class, Alice Wonder becomes a patient in the Radcliffe Lunatic Asylum. No one doubts her insanity. All but a hookah-smoking professor named Carter Pillar who believes he can prove her sanity by decoding Lewis Carroll’s paintings, photographs, and finding Wonderland’s real whereabouts.
Professor Caterpillar persuades the asylum that Alice can save lives and catch the Wonderland Monsters now reincarnated in modern day criminals. In order to do so, Alice leads a double life: an Oxford university student by day, a mad girl in an asylum by night. The line between sanity and insanity thins when she meets Jack Diamond, an arrogant college student who believes that nonsense is an actual science.

Larger than life characters, intricate mysteries, engrossing fun, and intriguing historical locations. Insanity will thrill you, makes turns pages, and stay with you forever.
Warning: intended for insane audience only

My Review:

Five Stars

I love everything Alice in Wonderland and was excited when a friend told me that I needed to read this book. And I’m really glad she told me to read it and now I’m hooked on Insanity and Cameron Jace’s Wonderland that he’s painted. He left me craving more of the story and made me feel like I was really transported into his insane world of Wonderland monsters.

I’d never thought to view Alice as an insane person that imagined all of Wonderland. I’d always thought that it was a young girl who really experienced Wonderland and that no one believed her. But in Insanity, Wonderland is a real place that has been sealed up tight by Lewis Carroll. Though some of the Wonderland folks inhabit the real world.

We first meet Alice in the insane asylum and we see her try and escape the asylum to get out into the world. She fails in her escape. This is the first time you’re exposed to the White Rabbit, and it’s where you see Alice battle with whether she’s sane or not. She desperately wants to be sane and to believe that Wonderland isn’t real. But it feels like a part of her really knows that Wonderland is real, but she wants to be free that she’s allowing herself to forget.

We meet the Caterpillar and he’s a serial killer in Insanity. Which is actually fitting for him. He always has his hookah, and it’s his weapon of choice when it comes to fighting the Wonderland monsters.

Then there is the Cheshire cat. The Cheshire cat has always been my favorite character in Alice in Wonderland, but not so much in Insanity. He’s portrayed as something evil, and in Alice in Wonderland he wasn’t too much of a good guy but I never had nightmares that he was chasing me. And if a book can infiltrate my dreams it’s a pretty amazing book.

I can’t wait to read the next book in this series and have recommended it to all of my friends. Jace sure knows how to write an amazing Alice spin-off and he did it flawlessly.

Blade the Destroyer Book Review

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Blade the Destroyer: The Last Bucelarii Book I (Volume 1)
Andy Peloquin

Book Synopsis:

The Hunter of Voramis is the perfect assassin:

Ruthless, Unrelenting, Immortal.

Yet he is haunted by lost memories, bonded to a cursed dagger that feeds him power yet denies him peace of mind. Within him rages an unquenchable need for blood and death.

When he accepts a contract to avenge the stolen innocence of a girl, the Hunter becomes the prey. The death of a seemingly random target sends him hurtling toward destruction, yet could his path also lead to the truth of his buried past?

My Review:
Five Stars

Blade the Destroyer is a gruesome tale of how we all fall into what society makes us out to be. The Hunter was made out to be a vile, murderous being and he fit that description well. But there was always that sense that he was lacking something. That a part of him longed for something more out of the existence he called his life. Like most, The Hunter wasn’t satisfied with the course his life had taken. And for someone that is immortal it’s hard to change something that you’ve always ever known to do.

The Hunter is one of these characters that you find yourself confused about how you feel about him. One minute you absolutely hate him, then you see his humility and you love him, then it goes right back to dislike. My feelings for The Hunter changed often while reading Blade the Destroyer. But in the end I had a newfound love for The Hunter and really hoped he figured it all out. It’s not very fun going through life not knowing who you are and ultimately feeling alone along the way.

I will admit that some parts of Blade the Destroyer really grossed me out. There’s quite a lot of violence that goes on, some vengeful other’s just ruthless killing. The violent scenes are done flawlessly and you can tell that Andy really did his research when it came down to it.

My heart ached for The Hunter in the end when he was in the situation that he was. And so I don’t give anything away I won’t say what that was. But my heart broke for him and this is really when my love for The Hunter came racing back in. Every ounce of me hated The Dark Hierarchs and The Bloody Hand. Every ounce of me was yelling the last few chapters because of what occurred in their brutal pages.

The Hunter may have made a lot of mistakes but in the end it seems he gets a chance to start anew and figure out who/what he really is. He gets a chance to start over and I think his reaction to it all makes him appear more human than animal. He gets a second chance and in the end we all deserve that.

I can’t wait for the next installment of this amazing series. Keep up the brilliant writing Andy.