Book Review: Braidy Von Althuis And The Gullible Ghost Hunter by Cassidy Dwelis

Author: Cassidy Dwelis
Release Date: 30th March 2018
Genre: Middle-Grade, Fantasy, Supernatural
Series: Braidy Von Althuis #2
Edition: e-book
Pages: 228
Publisher: Precursor Publishing
Blurb:
“Braidy felt a churning cauldron of fear stirring in his stomach. Uncle Rolo had the habit of destroying good things.” Ten-year-old Braidy von Althuis finally has what he needs: a good friend, Saturday-Morning cartoons, and a loving family. While life has been perfect since Braidy defeated the warlock that attempted to kidnap his father, Braidy knows the quiet will not last. Strangeness creeps through Maple Hills, especially since a ghost hunter moved into town. This ghost hunter has Braidy’s dead Uncle Rolo worried sick, but Braidy’s family thinks the newcomer in town is harmless. Braidy feels otherwise, and to make matters worse, a friend from Uncle Rolo’s past comes to call. Will Uncle Rolo follow the rules and stay safe, or will Braidy watch his uncle tear their family apart? Braidy von Althuis and the Gullible Ghost Hunter is a story about telling the truth, taking responsibility, and what it means to be a family. This book is suitable for children aged 8 – 11.

Review

★★★+1/2

Braidy Von Althuis And The Gullible Ghost Hunter by Cassidy Dwelis is the sequel to Braidy Von Althuis And The Pesky Pest Controller, a book which I heartily enjoyed. This book was a bit shorter than the last one and as a result, for me, did not pack as much punch as I was expecting. Still, overall the series kept progressing nicely through this book and the story in this one tackled another great adventure which was very enjoyable.

The book was good, but I felt that it missed a couple of characters entirely, for example, Blockhead and Kara. Kara at least made occasional appearances, but blockhead was missing entirely from the second half of the book which felt more like a plot hole than a planned event. Even Gran, Aunt Liz and Mrs Althuis were shown very less which affected the characterization in this one (which was really unfortunate as I had huge expectations from this one.)

Nonetheless, the story was exciting in its own way and the plot was, yet again, a winner. I loved the fact that in this book, the story focused on Brady’s uncle, Rolo, and that new characters were introduced in a nice way. I again came across the issue of unpolished dialogues, but the brilliance of the plot again made it up for me.

If you’re looking for a fresh series to explore than I’d highly recommend this series, though I don’t recommend reading this part without having read the first one as the first part, Braidy Von Althuis And The Pesky Pest Controller, gives an intimate knowledge of all the characters and their backgrounds.

this review is also posted on Goodreads and Amazon
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Book Review: Braidy Von Althuis And The Pesky Pest Controller by Cassidy Dwelis

Author: Cassidy Dwelis
Release Date: 10th May 2017
Genre: Middle-Grade, Fantasy, Supernatural
Series: Braidy Von Althuis #1
Edition: e-book
Pages: 323
Publisher: Precursor Publishing
Blurb:
Ten-year-old Braidy von Althuis just wants one thing: to fit in. The other kids at school think he’s weird, and for good reason. Despite his oddities, Braidy wants more than anything for his dad to be able to come to Township Day, a fun-filled event at school, but Mr. von Althuis refuses. “It’s too dangerous,” he says. Things change for Braidy when Mr. von Althuis gets sick, and, even wose, this pesky pest controller won’t leave Braidy alone! Will Braidy be able to get his family to Township Day without his world falling apart? Braidy von Altuis and the Pesky Pest Controller is a tale of frienship, family, magic, and mayhem that takes a look at what it means to be bullied and how to rise above it. This book is suitable for children aged 8 – 11.

Review

★★★★

Braidy Von Althuis And The Pesky Pest Controller by Cassidy Dwelis is an insanely enjoyable middle-grade fantasy book that will definitely warm your heart. This book is about a ten-year-old boy, Braidy, who lives with his odd family in an old palace and faces challenges in school in the form of bullying for being different. But in reality, Braidy is a brave boy who can go to any lengths in order to help his family and loved ones.

This is a beautiful story and I loved it to the core. The characterization is brilliant and the story progression is really, really good. The writing was mostly good but did feel a bit rough around the edges and in all honesty, seems to require a bit of a polish. Even the dialogues felt a bit crude and sometimes out of place, but these are minor flaws which can always be corrected by the author and seem minuscule in front of such a winning plot.

The best part about the book was that it had a lot going on which made the overall plot very interesting as well as very realistic. Each and every character’s internal conflicts were displayed beautifully and I really liked reading about each and every single person and incident.

I’m sure the kids would love to read this book (or listen to it as an elaborate bedtime story.) If you like reading books with honest characterization and concept then go ahead and grab yourself and/or your kids a copy of this amazing book.

this review is also posted on Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: Super Me by Jessica Dazzo

Author: Jessica Dazzo
Release Date: 20th July 2018
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Paranormal
Series: Super Series (Book #1)
Edition: E-book
Pages: 327
Publisher:
Blurb:
What does it mean when your mind goes rogue and starts making stuff up? For example, if you were to hear the radio talk to you—say your name and tell you to do something… that couldn’t be a good sign, right? Or when everyone keeps saying your ex-crush’s name in random conversation when you’re just really trying to get over the jerk because he’s actually terrible? Not good.
Seventeen-year-old Faye Aldright has never quite fit in, but when she starts hearing and seeing things all wrong, it makes life so much harder. Faye knows she’s the cause of all of the intense, awkward, and sometimes explosive misunderstandings with her mom, best friend, and the new boy who she definitely hates. She knows it’s all in her mind and that for some reason, it’s turned against her. It’s trying to ruin her life. She just has to figure out how to fight the crazy in order to get her life back on track–in order to find out what’s really going on in her little town, because something supernatural is definitely going on.
But how do you fight your mind? And what kind of person has their own mind as their nemesis?

Review

★★★★

Super Me by Jessica Dazzo is a refreshing new YA paranormal novel that is hard to put down once you get into the story.

Initially, it took me a while to get into the story, but once I was in, it was hard not to read and finish it off in one sitting. The story is complex, in a good way, and engaging. The writing is good and makes the book an easy and quick read. The characters believable and the setting fitting to the tone of the overall plotline. So, on the whole, it was a complete package and I enjoyed reading it. But what really set this book apart from the others in the genre is the emotional believability of the protagonist’s internal (as well as external) conflicts. I was able to connect with Faye and felt deeply for her. Other characters were also developed well and, hence, the ending proved to be emotionally exhausting yet rewarding at the same time.

If you’re into paranormal and supernatural fiction, then you must check out this book.

this review is also posted on goodreads and amazon

Book Review: The Blue Curtain by L.G. Metcalf

Author: L G Metcalf
Release Date: 24th May 2017
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal > Vampire, Mystery, Suspense
Edition: e-book
Pages: 
Publisher: Moleyco Press

Blurb:

Devastated by her father’s brutal murder, seventeen-year-old Emily Bliss is determined to find his killers, even after everyone else has given up. As Emily attempts to follow their trail, she encounters a mysterious stranger at a party. Beneath his handsome looks, physical prowess, vast wealth, intimidating presence and hypnotizing eyes, she can sense that he is tormented by demons that she cannot yet fathom. Soon Emily is shocked yet thrilled to realize that she is falling uncontrollably in love with him to the point of obsession and that she is willing say or do anything to make him stay. But an early birthday gift Emily’s father left for her has revealed secrets about her life, buried centuries ago, that will hurl her into a dark underworld that she never dreamed existed and point to a great destiny awaiting her, if only she can survive long
enough to seize it..

Review

★★★

The Blue Curtain by L.G. Metcalf is a paranormal YA romance novel that is quite like the others on the same theme but not too bad to read if you want to read a YA book with a mystery twist.

The writing is good, in fact, it is one of the positives in the book that made me read the entire story. The story was simple but it was made interesting with the use of alternating POVs in two very different timelines. The POV hopping was easy and smooth and made this an interesting read.

The plot was good but predictable and the storyline was not too different from other books in these genres. I liked the characters but wasn’t able to connect with them individually on any level. Though I did like them and cared enough to read about them through the end.

I’d recommend this book to the genre readers and to anyone who likes mystery reads and wouldn’t mind the paranormal or the YA angle.

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Book Review: Stories From The Witch Store by Olga Gutsol

Author: Olga Gutsol
Release Date: 20th August 2017
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal > Magic and Witches, Humour
Edition: e-book
Pages: 114
Publisher:

Blurb:

Funny and imaginative chronicles from the life of a hereditary witch Arelia who, along with her loyal companions Cat and house-ghost Puck, moved to the small town of Burnaville to open the Magic Potions store. Here she falls into a lifetime of boredom. How have her magical powers resulted in this? What is missing from the charming life she has built?

Review

Stories From The Witch Store is a delightful young adult read sprinkled with beautiful and heart-warming illustrations that’ll win your heart!

This book is written in the form of diary entries from the perspective of the main protagonist, Arelia, the town witch. It is a beautiful, beautiful book and I’m sure that it will steal your heart with the author’s clever writing and impressive imagination. It has been so long since I’ve read such a delightful book about witches. The wittiness of Arelia and her seemingly mundane life with Puck, the house spirit, and Cat, her familiar, is outstanding and very, very funny.

Each and every diary entry is a treat to read, whether short or long. Arelia is a very strong protagonist and I was able to connect to her instantly. I liked her from the first diary entry and was in love with her adorable character by the 2nd page itself. Even all the secondary characters are well-crafted and quite relatable, especially that of Puck and Cat – they’re my absolute favourites.

I’d recommend this book to each and everyone who loves reading, especially fantasy and paranormal (magic and witches) readers.

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Book Review: Dream, Recurring by Marc Canniff

Author: Mark Canniff
Release Date: 30th August 2016
Genre: Paranormal Fiction
Edition: E-book
Pages: 288
Publisher: Self Published

Rating: ★★★

Blurb:

Can there be a mystery that goes back over a hundred years, that only the dead can reveal?
Lucy has been having a recurring dream. Night after night she finds herself driving on a winding road with her best friend Sam. She feels lost as this path seems to lead to nowhere. That is until she discovers a house. Curious, she goes up to investigate, discovering that the place is empty.
The mystery of the dream deepens when she realizes that she’s being haunted by an entity. Why is it attached to her?
Both Sam and her uncover a piece of history that only those that have passed on have kept secret. Why is it so important and does it have anything to do with the dark being?
It suddenly becomes a race against time as they grasp that their very lives might be at stake.
Can they uncover what is really going on in time, before it’s too late?
Is there a connection between the house, the uncovered past and the evil entity?

Review

Dream, Recurring by Mark Canniff is a cosy paranormal book with a strong plot that’ll pull you in right from the start.

I liked reading this book most of all for the strong and well built-up plotline. The concept was not only unique but also quite smart. I liked the idea of ghosts and spirits doing something other than avenging.

The writing was good but because of not being an edited version the writing fell flat on its face throughout the book (more on this below.

As for the characters, I didn’t particularly find the lead characters, Lucy and Sam, relatable, but they did manage to make me like them enough to keep on going with the book. The character arc was missing and I wasn’t able to feel an emotional connection with either of the leads. The characterization, for me, is one of the 2 main flaws in this book. The 2nd one being the editing (or the lack of it.)

This book would be a much better read after it gets edited thoroughly. The typos and the grammatical errors were disturbing the flow of the reading to an extent that after a while it started to feel like a burden. I’m sure that if this book would have been editing properly, my rating would have been a clean 4 stars, but unfortunately, that’s not the case.

So all in all, this book is good for anyone who enjoys reading Paranormal Fiction and won’t mind the errors and the mistakes in the writing.

More from the authorAuthor Interview: Mark Canniff

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Novella Review: Nika: A Seychatka Novella by D.H. Gibbs

29380359Author:  D.H. Gibbs 
Release Date: 1st March 2016
Series: –
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Edition: E-book
Pages: 96
Publisher: Sandphics Creations

Rating: ★★★★

Blurb:

Taken off the streets Nika is thrown into an unknown world where she’s held captive. As an orphan, she has been on the run and must find her way out before they discover her secret. But these people held the knowledge of her family and who she is. Will she be able to find out before her secret is revealed? After hundreds of years, Demyan has finally found the rightful ruler of his race. Unfortunately, she doesn’t know who she is and is doing everything in her power to escape him. Time is running out and Demyan has to convince Nika to take her rightful place otherwise the battle will be lost and his race extinguished.


Review

Nika by D.H.Gibbs is a Young-Adult Fantasy read that is sure to capture your attention right from the start till the very end.

This book is a real example of how really powerful novellas can be. This is, of course, the first book in a series, but I definitely loved it and will be keeping an eye out for the other parts in this series.

The main character was likable and relatable and the other secondary characters were also good. I liked the writing of the author as its simplicity made this book a very easy and a quick read.
I liked the basic concept of the story about how Nika was the long lost heir of her family, which she was completely unaware of. And I especially liked how she was made aware of everything and how well she adapted to her new surroundings. I see a lot of potential in this series and can’t wait to read the next part!

I liked this book quite a bit and would recommend it to all the YA and Fantasy lovers.


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Book Review: Esper Files by Egan Brass

32493342Author: Egan Brass  
Release Date: 26 October 2016
Series: Esper Files
Genre: Science Fiction Fantasy, Steampunk, Supernatural, Paranormal
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 
Publisher: Inkitt

Rating: ★★★★

Blurb:

Set in London during the latter part of the 19th century. An experiment goes wrong at The Oxford Academy of Science, giving certain people extraordinary powers which turns them into ‘Espers’. An institute is set up to teach Espers how to control these power, and stop corrupt Espers from abusing theirs. Nathan and James, two agents from the Institute team up with Freya, a young Esper whose brother (gifted with the strange ability to manipulate emotions) is abducted by a ruthless Baron. The group has to fight against a dark threat to protect the fragile peace of Victorian London… And the rest of the world.

Review

Esper Files by Egan Brass is the first book in the series of the same name and is an enjoyable supernatural fantasy read.

I had no idea what to expect from this book when I was first asked to review it, but when I started reading it and was only a few pages in, I knew it for fact that I was in for a fun ride. And as it turned out, I wasn’t wrong.

Even though the entire concept was quite similar to the X-men team – Professor X, Logan, and Magneto, still I was able to enjoy the new take on the whole “being different” thing.

The writing was captivating and the story was really engrossing. The concept was not unique but it was definitely good. The story progression was really good and I really liked reading this book. I was pulled into the story from the very start right till the end. It was a fast-paced read which proved to be a quick one (another plus for me.)

In this book, I liked the story better than the characters. I won’t say the characters were completely one-dimensional because I liked them, but I wasn’t able to feel a striking connection with any one of them. It was one of those books that made me take enough interest in the characters to want to know what happens in the end and also what happens after it. So I’ll be definitely looking forward to reading the sequel (hoping that now that I know the characters well, I might feel a connection with them.)

I’d recommend this book to fantasy lovers and to anyone who is looking for a light and quick supernatural series to read.


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Book Review: Deadraiser – Part 1: Horror In Jordan’s Bank by Stephanie C. Lyons-Keeley & Wayne J. Keeley

31927052Author: Stephanie C. Lyons-Keeley and Wayne J. Keeley
Series: Deadraiser Series
Genre: Horror, Paranormal, Occult
Edition: Ebook (PDF)
Pages: 
Publisher: 

Rating: ★★★★★

Blurb:

Necromancy is an ancient black magic used for the purposes of communing with the dead. It is believed that practitioners of the dark art may harness the ultimate power of life and death and raise the departed for their own nefarious, malevolent purposes. It also is alleged that a true necromancer may realize the ultimate gift of mortality.
DEADRAISER is the tale of a present-day practitioner who achieves what others have been unable to do for centuries — to raise the dead. The problem is that he must sacrifice innocent victims in order to maintain his power.
Enter Fanchon (Frankie) Manning, daughter of the late movie star Erika Manning. She is the ideal sacrificial lamb for the Necromancer’s perverse desires. The only thing that stands between the Necromancer and the girl is Christopher McGuire, a lost soul who long ago has ceased believing in anything. In order to save the child, he must somehow rediscover his faith and summon the courage to take on the darkest, most sinister being imaginable.

REVIEW

Deadraiser by Stephanie C. Lyons-Keeley & Wayne J. Keeley is one smasher of a book!
Staying true to its genre, this book kept me up at nights and gave me the chills.

The plot is really great and I enjoyed reading each and every single chapter. There was a mix of newspaper articles, journal entries, pages from the unpublished manuscripts, etc, and all these things took the plot and the setting of this book to an entirely different level.

The basic concept of the book is so unique that I was really intrigued and scared by it before even starting it. I’ve never read anything that was directly based upon Necromancy, and the fact that this book was entirely based on it really thrilled me. And after reaching the third chapter, I was sure that I was in for one hell of a reading experience.

I like the pacing, and the tension built-up was brilliant too. I also liked the flow of the authors’ writing, especially considering that it is a co-authored book. Right from the brilliant opening to the cliff-hanger of an ending , for me, this book scored a perfect 10 on all the fronts.

The characterization is not extraordinarily great, but considering the genre, it was pretty good. At least it was good enough for me to want to read this story without putting it down even for a second.

I’d recommend this book to all the Horror readers and also to those readers who want to read a nice scary read for Halloween. This is one horror book you wouldn’t want to miss!


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Book Review: Nightlife by Matthew Quinn Martin

17672505Author: Matthew Quinn Martin
Release Date: October 21, 2013
Series: Nightlife
Genre: Horror, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal
Edition: e-book (Kindle)
Pages: 384
Publisher: Pocket Star

Rating: ★★★★★

Blurb:

For centuries an ancient evil has slept beneath the streets of New Harbor. This Halloween, it wakes up.
An action-packed debut horror novel from talented new writer Matthew Quinn Martin, Nightlife pits a feisty bartender and a mysterious loner against bloodthirsty terrors as alluring as they are deadly.

Nightclub bartender and serial heartbreaker Beth Becker might be a cynic. But when her best friend goes missing Halloween night, Beth knows it’s up to her to find out what happened.

Her quest will take her on an odyssey through the crumbling city of New Harbor, Connecticut. Along the way she meets a homeless prophet warning of something he calls the “Night Angel”-a bloodthirsty creature that feeds on the forgotten. And she will form an unlikely bond with a hunted stranger who knows all too well what stalks the streets at night.

REVIEW

I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Nightlife by Mathew Quinn Martin. This book is a real page-turner from start to end. It was literally un-put-down-able!

The best part about this book and also the most impressive one was that this book showed Vampires in completely different light. I guess this is the first time someone has successfully pulled off portraying Vampires as really scary creatures. The concept behind the whole vampire mythology was explored beautifully and I was captivated by the author’s imagination. For the first time in my life, the Vampires actually creeped me out! I’m glad that finally, someone wrote a book that didn’t show vampires as the lovey-dovey pets people want to fall in love with.

Author Mathew Quinn Martin showed them for what they are really are – blood sucking nightmares.

Apart from this, the writing was great too, and the pacing was superb. The alternating POVs kept me on on my toes the entire time and I enjoyed the POV shifts mostly because the transition was really smooth.

The characterisation is also brilliant. I loved all the characters, especially that of Jack and Beth. I even liked Beth’s jackass boyfriend. The reason why I liked Ryan is because all his faults and stupidity made him come out as a really believable character. I was able to connect to all the characters.

The book began with an intriguing prologue which threw me right into the story’s heart and was a complete winner for me. I was so engrossed in it that I wasn’t able to put down this book once I started it.

The ending was good and quite practical. I loved it and thought that it was perfect and in tune with the story.

I’m really looking forward to reading more by the author. I’d recommend this book to all the paranormal and horror lovers and especially to all the Vampires fanatics.


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Book Review: Forever And A Night by Lana Campbell

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Author:  Lana Campbell
Release Date: April 26, 2016
Series: 
Genre: Paranormal Romance > Vampires
Edition: e-book (kindle)
Pages: 398
Publisher: Tate Publishing & Enterprise

Rating: ★★★

Blurb:

Nathan Davenport is being stalked by Isabella Ravini, the feral vampire who stole his human life over a hundred and sixty years ago. She made him her fledging, a slave for her dark, evil purposes-hunting humans. After a few years she released him, and Nathan reluctantly learned to accept the cursed life she’d foisted upon him. Over time he amassed a great fortune, which today has made him famous worldwide. Isabella decides she wants to be a part of this world of fame and fortune Nathan created for himself. She’s determined to marry him, and love has nothing to do with it. His money is her primary target, and the fame and prestige attached to being the wife of one of the richest men in the world wouldn’t be so bad either. In an effort to evade her until he can figure out how to stop her, he hides at a safe house he owns in New Orleans. One Saturday evening in NOLA, he decides to have dinner in the city. He chooses a quiet little Italian bistro, never imagining this night will change his life forever. The human woman who delivers his order isn’t a server, but the restaurant’s sous chef, a beautiful ethnic woman possessing the most delicious blood scent he’s ever encountered. The moment Mia Peebles arrives at his table with his plate, tasting her becomes an obsession. Mia wants nothing to do with him because of Nathan’s reputation as a playboy. So Nathan enchants her, feeds from her, but his lusts for her blood and body play havoc with his thinking. Nathan finds a way to bring her into his life as his personal chef and quickly falls in love with her. The trouble is Mia has no idea he’s a vampire because during the enchanting episodes, Nathan blocked her memories of those sensual encounters. How will Nathan tell her the truth without losing her and keep Isabella from finding him? Or worst yet, will Isabella discover how much Mia has come to mean to him?

REVIEW

Forever And A Night by Lana Campbell is a decent paranormal romance.

I enjoyed reading it because of the writing. Author’s writing was really good; it flowed smoothly and made this book a surprisingly quick read given the total number of pages.

I did like the story too, but at more than a dozen places I found a lot of resemblance to the plots of other Vampire novels. I do enjoy good paranormal romance books, but while reading this book I couldn’t stop myself from comparing to the other books in the genre.

The romantic relationship between Nathan and Mia was believable and engaging. It was dangerously bordering on the borderline of clichéd but somehow managed to not fall off the wall.

What I did find interesting was the fact that the leading lady was the mother of grown up children, a fact that is hard to find in most of the paranormal romance books. That was the biggest redeeming factor for this book, at least for me.

The beginning and ending were good and the story was medium-paced which made it a pleasant read. In spite of the problem I had, I still liked the characterization and the story settings. I liked the concept and enjoyed knowing more about the characters as the story progressed.

This book might not be the best one in the genre, but it didn’t fall short either.

If you’re into vampires and love reading romance novels then this is a book for you, but if you don’t then you might or might not like it.


Goodreads

Book Review: Hearts Unloched by Claire Gem

29916637Author: Claire Gem
Release Date: April 14, 2016
Series: 
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 320
Publisher: Erato Publishing

Rating: ★★★★

Blurb:

AWARD-WINNER! 2016 New York Book Festival Runner-up!
A psychic interior designer reluctantly agrees to renovate a sexy investor’s abandoned hotel on a lake rumored to have once been the mob’s body dumping ground.
Interior designer Kate Bardach loves her single girl’s lifestyle—living in Manhattan and spending weekends at her lake house. She’s passionate about her career, reinventing old buildings. But there are some projects she can’t take on because of the spirits trapped there. Kate is psychic—she sees dead people.
Marco Lareci is one of Wall Street’s most successful investment brokers who’s achieved all of his life’s goals—except for finding his soulmate. His latest project, an abandoned resort on Loch Sheldrake, needs a savvy designer to transform the crumbling complex into a boutique hotel. When Marco meets Kate, he can’t believe his luck. She’s the perfect match for his business and his heart.
Marco’s body excites Kate even more than does his renovation project. But the haunting there, a bonafide poltergeist, affects her on an intensely personal level. Kate’s aunt disappeared from the place fifty years ago.
Will the spirit doom Kate and Marco’s love, or drive them closer together?

Review

This book started out with a brilliant opening and I was dragged into the story right from the very first page. It was a perfect blend of all the emotions one can think of, love and lust being the primary ones. I really enjoyed it and would love to read more books by the author.

The writing is great and had a really good flow to it. The characterization was also brilliant and I was able to connect to both Marco and Kate. And to top it all off, the book really scared the hell out of me. I’m easy to scare and this book hit the bullseye beautifully (at least for me.)

I really enjoyed how the author explored an abandoned and aged property and associated it with spirits and ghosts. Seriously, how can it not be a perfect setting for a spooky story? And the passionate romance just elevated the plot to a whole new level.

The ending is was good too and one that I thought went perfectly with the story. I’d highly recommend this book to people who enjoy ghost stories and don’t mind passionate romance (or the other way around.)


You can also read this review at Goodreads and Amazon.

Graphic Novel Review: Ghostbusters – Who Ya Gonna Call?

28862488Author: Erik Burnham
Illustrator: Dan Schoening 

Release Date: June 28th, 2016
Series: Earth One
Genre:  Paranormal, Supernatural, Fantasy
Edition: ASCM
Pages: 104
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Distributer: Diamond Comics
Source: NetGalley

Rating: ★★★

Blurb: 

When an upstart paranormal investigation and elimination service calling themselves The Ghost Smashers sets up shop in NYC, the Ghostbusters suddenly find themselves out of work and out of favor. But The Ghost Smashers are messing with some shaky science, and it’s only a matter of time until their incompetence threatens the entire world. Ghostbusters #13-16!

Review

As soon as I saw this one on NetGalley, I immediately requested it, but as it turns out it wasn’t what I was expecting. I picked up this book for two reasons, one was, of course, it was Ghostbusters and the second reason was that I saw a female on the cover donning the typical GB’s attire, so I was really intrigued. in fact, I was hoping that it might be related to their upcoming movie, but to my utter disappointment this book failed to please me.

The story was not that great. 90% of it was good enough, but the last 5% of the book completely bounced off my head as it felt unnecessary, to say the least. I was like, “What the hell is this now?” And then the book ended. So, you see, it was really unnecessary.

The illustrations were good but I had a hard time differentiating between two characters who looked too similar for me to easily tell them apart.

The cover of the book holds absolutely no significance and is misleading to some extent as initially, I was hoping to see the assistant (?) to turn into a ghost buster wearing the uniform she is adorning in the cover, but that never happened.

Overall this book wasn’t that bad, but due to high expectations (given its name), it completely fell short.

Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 12.17.55 am

Screenshot of Ghostbusters.


You can also read this review at Goodreads, NetGalley, and Amazon.

Book Review: Dying To Tell by T.J. O’Conner (Gumshoe Ghost Mystery #3)

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Author: TJ O’Connor 
Release Date: January 8, 2016
Series: Gumshoe Ghost Mystery
Genre: Cozy Mystery, Crime Fiction, Paranormal, Detective Series
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 384
Publisher: Duvinchi Media Group
Source: Author
Buy it here: Amazon

Rating: ★★★★★

Blurb:

Detective Oliver Tucker never knew how perilous the past was until his wife, Angel, is nearly killed and the reclusive banker, William Mendelson, is found murdered in a hidden vault where ancient Egyptian relics and World War II secrets are stashed.
Now those relics are missing. The secrets are coming out. The dead are talking.
Tuck, the detective for the dead, knows there’s more to Mendelson’s murder than haunting family secrets and decades-old skullduggery. With Angel and his detective partners, Tuck’s guided by his long-dead grandfather, World War II OSS Captain Oliver Tucker I. Ollie is still on a mission from 1942 as murderers, thieves, and spies descend on small-town Winchester.
As the case unfolds, Tuck must also confront the growing distance between his death and Angel’s life–and the outcome is a killer of its own.

Review

This book is a real masterpiece. I enjoyed each and every chapter thoroughly and had a great time enjoying the great narration and the amusing twists and turns throughout the story. The steady flow of twists and turns and the odd reveals are perfectly timed and make reading this book a brilliant experience.

I was really impressed with the author’s writing style. It’s fresh, engaging and has a really good flow that makes reading this book one hell of an experience. And the best part of this book was the author’s sense of humor. The witty writing is just out of the world. I was chuckling the entire time whenever Tuck made a witty remark. I even cracked up laughing hard at more than a dozen instances (and my hubby found it rather amusing.)

The characterization is AMAZing and the author has done a fabulous job in creating, what I would call EPIC characters. I’m in love with all the main characters and I feel a sense of close connection with all of them.

The mystery itself was the highlight of the book and the author nailed it right to the very minute details.

This book has everything- a fabulous mystery, perfect characterization, brilliant timings, humor, ghosts, emotional nit-picks, funny one-liners, elements from the past (WWII) and a time-travelling detective. What else can a reader want more! I LOVED this book and I’m going to read all the other parts in this series (each and everyone!)

The small chapters and the alternating POVs kept me completely glued to the book and whenever I had to keep the book aside, you know for everyday life, it really irritated me to no end. I simply wanted to sit and be lost in this amazing story where a dead detective, and that too a stud one, solves the crime with his partner and wife.

I loved the idea of involving stuff from the past in the crime of the present and the entire ghost-family-thing The concept is really unique to me and I must say that I really, really loved it!

Bookstagram:

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Instagram

Other Stuff

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Opening Line: “Dying is as perilous as secrets and lies. Depending, of course, on who is keeping the secrets and who is telling the lies.”

Highlights: Writing and author’s sense of humor.

Lowlights: None.

Memorable Quotes:

When I was alive, I was a hotshot homicide cop. Now, dead, I’m still a hotshot homicide cop- it’s just that my clients are nearly always dead or, at least, connected to someone who is dead.

Sometimes being dead is a pain in the ass.

Memorable Paragraphs:

A tall distinguished man in a heavy wool overcoat stood beside her now. He had one arm around her, speaking slowlyto her – consoling her- and his other arm hung to his side, a black, compact .45semiautomatic handgun in his grasp. He looked like a younger Clooney, but perhaps better looking. I instantly distrusted him.

Final Thoughts: A terrific cozy mystery.


You can also read this review at Goodreads and Amazon.

Book Review: Monsterland

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Author: Michael Phillip Cash 
Release Date: April 6, 2016
Series: None
Genre: YA | Adventure | Urban Fantasy | Post-Apocalyptic | Horror>Zombies |
Paranormal>Vampires | Shapeshifter>Werewolves | Post-Apocalyptic
Edition: Ebook (mobi)
Pages: 336
Publisher: Create Space
Source: NetGalley
Buy it here: Amazon

Blurb

Welcome to Monsterland – the scariest place on Earth. All guests can interact with real vampires in Vampire Village, be chased by an actual werewolf on the River Run, and walk among the dead in Zombieville.
Wyatt Baldwin, a high school student and life-long movie buff is staring bleakly at a future of flipping burgers. Due to a fortuitous circumstance, Wyatt and his friends are invited to the star-studded opening of Monsterland. In a theme park full of real vampires, werewolves and zombies, what could possibly go wrong?

Rating

TRB 5 stars

Review

It was the entrance to the Auschwitz death camp.

The story line of Monsterland is really unique, fresh and, I must admit, quite chilling (esp. the werewolf part.)

It’s not scary in the literal sense as such but it does gives the chills at more than one occasion. The descriptions are wildly realistic and the images they paint is worth all the time and money spent on this book. I felt that I was the one visiting the Monsterland with my friends and not the fictional characters. The story is beautifully crafted and the detailing is commendable. Being a paranormal/shapeshifter/horror storyline, the author successfully captured the character backgrounds and successfully added layers to the overall concept.

I enjoyed the book right from the first line right till the very last one. The overlapping of the paranormal and horror genres is commendable because, despite my initial reservations, the author managed to woo me with his amazing story and its execution. It is a job well done on the author’s part.

I felt a connection with each and every character of this book. What seemed to be pointless discussions of monster-obsessed teenagers in the initial pages of the book, made more and more sense as the story progressed and finally when it reached the last act.

I also enjoyed the last connection that the author made between the characters. It’s a well thought out storyline with 3-dimensional characters and layers and layers of different elements.

All the elements blended perfectly well together (except for one little thing- why was Raoul the vamp scared of the zombies!?!? Well, this crossed my mind only for a second before I got caught in the thrill of the moment and my mind moved on to other characters who were literally fighting for their lives (when the story is as good as this, who cares?)

I love myself some badass zombies but this is the first time I actually saw them sympathetically as “victims” and poor sick people who are not someone to be shot or bashed in the head by any/everyone, but a sad bunch of unfortunate people who caught the plague.

By the starting of the end, I was actually feeling sad for all the three creatures- the zombies, the vamps and the werewolves- but by the end, all the other things faded from my mind and I experienced what I really wanted to (and why I really picked this book in the first place)  – a complete monster massacre.

Other Stuff

Opening Line: The sky was a sparkling, power blue, mosquitoes droned lazily over the tepid water, frogs croaked messages while they sunbathed on waxy lilypads.

Memorable Quotes: 

Wyatt looked back at the main area of the park, feeling uneasy he was being led somewhere he shouldn’t be going.

Memorable Paragraphs: 

Wyatt glanced back in his rearview mirror and shifted uncomfortable in his seat, remembering why the sign unnerved him. It bore a stricking resemblance to a picture he has seen in his history book. The words were in German and read Arbeit Macht Frei– Work Makes You Free. It was the entrance to the Auschwitz death camp.

Highlights: Superb concept and amazing execution of all the elements.

Lowlights: None.

Final Thoughts: A must read for paranormal and post-apocalyptic readers.


You can also read this review at Goodreads, Amazon and NetGalley

 

Book Review: No Rest For The Wicked (Vampires Of London #1)

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Author: Wolfe Cotto
Release Date: February 28, 2015
Series: Vampires Of London
Genre: Paranormal Fiction
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 288
Publisher: Black Crow Publishing Limited 
Source: Publicity Assistant, Sam
Buy it here: Amazon

Blurb

Edward DeVere, 600 and some year old vampire, resident of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, has been taking it easy.
London is home sweet home and Eddy considers himself a Renaissance man; a bit of a modern day ‘flaneur’. Some would say a ‘slacker’ and a bit of a ‘stoner’. Opinions are divided.

Eddy knows the city like the back of his hand. Life is ordered, predictable and boring. Until someone near and dear disappears and he is left with no choice but to find out why.

It should just be a night’s work for such an ‘old timer’.
But things don’t go as planned.
Eddy’s cosy world starts to fall apart.
Nothing is what it seems.
It’s time to wake up, smell the coffee and roll his sleeves up.
It’s a damn nuisance, he’s exhausted and could really do without all this ‘tom tit’.
But it seems, there’s just no rest for the wicked.

Rating

TRB 1 star

Review

DNF’ed at page 170. Though I really liked the witty comments and observations of Edward, the writing style of the author really bothered me. The sentence formation is really complex (and at times really weird, what with 5-6 commas in one single sentence itself.) It really distracted me from the plot, which BTW was a little too uninteresting for my taste. At one point (around page 50 or so,) I was wondering what the hell is really going on.

If I would have had free time at my hands I would have tried to at least complete it, but unfortunately, I don’t have even a second to spare. Certainly not for the books that don’t suck me right into it. from the start. But if you are really patient and don’t mind the blabberings of an extremely talkative vampire, then go ahead and give it a try. You might just like this book.

You can also read this review at:

Goodreads and Amazon

Other Stuff

Opening Line: I wake from a bad dream, except I know it wasn’t just a dream.

My Instagram:

Novella Review: Home Is Where The Start Is (Roseland #1)

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Author: Eric Ugland
Release Date: January 29, 2015 
Series: Roseland Series
Book: Book 1
Genre: Contemporary Detective Fiction | Cozy Mystery | Cozy Paranormal 
Edition: E-Book (mobi) 
Pages: 113
Publisher: Air Quites Publishing 
Source: Author 
Buy it here: Amazon

Blurb

When Ginger Mitchell finds out her mother committed suicide, she packs up her life as a Vegas “dancer” (hey, somebody’s gotta do it) and drives her cherry-red SUV straight home to Portland. Without a disapproving mom to rebel against, what was the point?
But things aren’t what they seem once Ginger gets to the City of Roses. For one, nothing about her mother’s suicide adds up, but no one else even wants to entertain the idea that it could’ve been murder. No one that is, except the ghost of Ginger’s mother, who keeps scaring the crap out of her. It’s probably just a psychotic break because of the grief, right? Sure.
In any case, it’s during one of these visits from Ghost Mom that Ginger decides to solve the murder on her own. She really only ever wanted to be a cop, so maybe she should start a private detective business and see where it takes her. And look, that hippie kid running down the street after a muscle car right now probably needs help. Another case!

Rating

4-stars

Review

Home Is Where The Start Is started off pretty well. I really liked the don’t-give-a-damn attitude of Ginger and most of all the first line that really kick started the book. As I went along it kept on getting more and more interesting. As it’s the first book in Roseland series, it dedicated a good amount of time in setting up the basics (characters, locations, situations, etc.) and honestly, I  enjoyed reading every bit of it.

The writing is exceptional and packs a big dose of humor. I loved the imagery and at more than a dozen occasions it made me laugh out loud.

The book ended on a high note and left me craving for more. I had low expectations from the book considering that it borders on the paranormal realm, but I really enjoyed the ghost angle. Though what I really found strange was Ginger’s mother’s personality. She seemed a little opposite of what was expecting her to be especially  considering her profession. Maybe in the next book it’ll be clearer.

For a novella, this book really packs a punch and is totally worth the time spent on reading it. I’d recommend it to anyone really as it’s a nice cozy mystery to read and enjoy.

You can also read this review at: 
Goodreads and Amazon

Other Stuff

Opening Line: I wish I hadn’t been sucking cock when my mother died, but I was.

Highlights: Storytelling

Lowlights: 

Final Thoughts: A nice and cozy mystery.

Novella Review: Stillwell: A Haunting on Long Island

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Author: Michael Phillip Cash
Release Date:  2013 
Series: None 
Genre: Horror | Paranormal | Suspense 
Edition: Kindle (.mobi)
Pages: 137
Publisher: Red Feather Publishing
Source: NetGalley 
Buy it here: Amazon

Blurb

Paul Russo’s wife just died. While trying to get his family’s life back in order, Paul is being tormented by a demon who is holding his wife’s spirit hostage on the other side. His fate is intertwined with an old haunted mansion on the north shore of Long Island called Stillwell Manor. Paul must find clues dating back hundreds of years to set his wife’s soul free.

Rating

4-stars

Review

 

Story/Plot:

This book has a really unique plot-line and I enjoyed it pretty well. It was a mild read but at times it really gave me the creeps. The concept was really good but I feel that the story could have a little ore better towards the end. Still, I enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone looking for a decent suspense or horror read.

Though I felt that despite of having a great start to the book, the ending was a little week.

Characters:

It took a few chapters to establish a connection with the protagonist, Paul, but once it was done, I was able to enjoy the book without any difficulty. I really felt sorry for the situation he was in – dead wife and three children to care of and then dead wife coming back to ask for help. The other characters were also good but I wasn’t able to connection with anyone else.

Romance:

There was no romance as the lead’s wife dies, but there was a whole book full of love. It was really sweet to read a horror story which was completely driven by only one main emotion – love.

The author did justice to the theme.

Writing:

I’d like to commend the author on the simplicity of the book. The writing was simple yet relatable and I’d like to read more books by the author.

Beginning:

The beginning of the book was probably the best part as it drew me right in. I was able to get the feel of the whole situation and could clearly see where the story was going.

Ending:

The ending, for me, was a bit confusing and week. I felt that with such a great concept the author should have really pulled it off with a great ending (connecting the dots and all) but to my disappointment the story felt quite rushed at the end.

Cover Art:

I like the cover art and it compliments the theme of the book perfectly.

Blurb:

The blurb is quite good and summarises the story perfectly well.

You canals read this review at Goodreads and Amazon.

Other Stuff

Opening Line: Paul turned from the dark window, twitching the drapes back in place.

Highlights: Beginning of the plot.

Lowlights: Ending.

Final Thoughts: A decent read.


Review by:

pics-2 copyHeena Rathore P.

My name is Heena and I’m a freelance writer, blogger and a book-reviewer (and soon-to-be author.) I’m an introvert, thinker, neat freak (cleanliness OCD), hardcore idealist, fitness junkie, music fanatic, compulsive reader, self-assertive, opinionated, dog lover and an atheist.

The Reading Bud is my brain-child and is a huge part of my life. I love reading and reviewing. What started as a hobby has become my passion.

Read more about me here.


Book Review: Demon Dance (A Sundancer Novel #1)

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AuthorBrian Freyermuth
Release Date: November 17, 2013
Series: Sundancer
Genre: Urban Fantasy | Paranormal | Thriller
Edition: mobi
Pages: 4159
Publisher: Middark Press
Source: Author
Buy it here: Amazon

Blurb

Nick St. James was born different. His extraordinary gifts have saved him time and time again, but they couldn’t save the one thing he loved most: his wife.

Now he just wants to forget his old life, but more importantly, he wants to forget the magical underworld that lives beneath the “real” world. A place where a man’s faith can determine the very fabric of reality. Where ancient forgotten gods walk hidden among us, and angels and demons fight for our very souls.

But nothing stays hidden forever. Nick’s peaceful world is ripped apart when a demon slaughters his ex-partner and marks him for death. Now he must use all his gifts to find the one who summoned the nightmarish creature, but more importantly, he needs to find the one thing he lost long ago.

Himself.

Rating

5-stars

Review

Plot/Story:

After the death of Nick’s wife and her sister, nick start to plan and start to realize that he can no longer hide from what he is. This story is one big ups and down and tons of action, with lots of emotions. This book has everything you might want from a book in this genre and much more.

Characters:

Nick is a wonderful and surprising main character. All he really wants is normal life, after all “he’s just a writer” but life always seems to interrupt with his plans. Soon he learns that he can no longer hide from his paranormal world, but he also learns how he fits in the normal world. I loved the inner battles Nick faces and see how he faces them.

Romance/Kills:

The constant battle against demons is not pretty, lol, but the author details of these violent battles are not too revolting (for my taste) but they are not pretty 😉
From bizarre friendships and surprising characters along the way, I loved that this book ends with the best happy ending that can be for Nick, at least for the first book.

Writing:

This is a first person told story and it’s full of sarcastic humor and emotions. The author truly has a great writing style that keeps you flipping those pages fast and wanting to know more. I love how took this wonderful and harsh world of the paranormal and yet still kept our normal world and the humanity more dominant and more important to the story.
There are big, big names in this book that you might already know and Nick and his friends battle them all.

Beginning:

The beginning of the book was very fast pace, exciting to read and the author’s writing of the paranormal really grabs your attention from the start. For the first few lines you get to know the author’s humor and writing style and you are hooked 😉

Ending:

There were a few things, that remained unexplained, but I guess the author leaves some for next book. With that being said, the ending was still very satisfying and I am sure to read the next book.

Cover Art:

I loved the cover art a lot. It’s simple yet very pretty and hints nicely of the book’s plot.

Blurb:

The blurb on Goodreads was really intriguing and I am happy it didn’t disappoint me, as sometime this happens. It’s a short blurb, written with hints and clues and overall very interesting.

You can also read this review at Goodreads and Amazon.

Other Stuff

Opening Line: “Leave it to an ancient god to ruin a perfectly good afternoon.”

Highlights: Everything! I love the characters, the paranormal world and I love Brian’s writing style a lot.

Lowlights: None!

Memorable Quotes:

Leave it to an ancient god to ruin a perfectly good afternoon.

Ann used to say that life is a constant battle between faith and chance. That by giving us free will, the creator also gave us chance.

It will never be you, Nick. The game is in your blood. It’s what made you…you. It’s what Ann fell in love with.

Oh, and Nick?” “Yeah?” “Don’t be so dumb either. You really do have a hard time staying in one piece.

Final Thoughts: This is a bizarre, entertaining and fantastic book to read, I truly enjoyed reading it.


Review contributor:

pics copy 2Galit Balli

I am an avid reader, coffee addict, a writer and a blogger. I am a bit of agoraphobic (people scare me, lol). Me and my hubby love to spend every moment together, we even game together.

I live mostly in my own imaginary world full of dragons, magic and vampires and from time to time I pull myself away to deal with the real world.

Read more about Galit here.


Book Review: Angelfall (Penryn And The End Of Days #1)

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Author: Susan Ee
Release Date: January 1st, 2011
Series: Penryn & The End Of Days
Genre:  Young Adult | Dystopian | Post-Apocalyptic | Fantasy | Paranormal > Angels
Edition: Kindle
Pages: 288
Publisher: Amazon Children's Publishing and Skyscape
Source: NetGalley
Followed By: World After (Penryn & The End Of Days #2)

Continue reading

Book Review: The Bone Treaty (Seal Of Solomon #1)

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Author: T.C. McKee
Release Date: August 1, 2014
Series: Seal Of Solomon
Genre: Fantasy | Paranormal > Angels/Gargoyles | Young Adult | Urban Fantasy
Edition: mobi
Pages: 3853 (kindle pages)
Publisher: BookFish Books
Interest: Requested by Publisher
Source: Author (Thanks a lot Erin and Tammy!)
Buy it here: Amazon

Continue reading

Book Review: Pet Sematary

Pet SemataryAuthor: Stephen King
Release Date: January 1, 1983 
Series: None 
Genre: Thriller | Fiction | Paranormal | Horror | Adult | Fantasy | Zombies | Suspense | Dark-Fiction 
Pages: 465 
ISBN NO.: 978-0-340-95146-0 
Publisher: Hachette India
add to

Blurb

The house looked right, felt right, to Dr. Louis Creed. Rambling, old, unsmart and comfortable. A place where the family could settle; the children grow and play and explore. The rolling hills and meadows of Maine seemed a world away from the fume-choked dangers of Chicago. Continue reading

Book Review: Exotica (Nightshade cases, Ep-2)

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Genre: Crime | Paranormal | Thriller | Episodes

My Rating: 5+1/2 out of 6

Read my review of Exotica at JC’s Book Haven.

You can also read this review at Goodreads.

Blurb:

Bodies wash up on the Silver City beach all the time, but this one is different. Detective Geraldine Meyers is hot on the case, with help from medical examiner Dr. Rachel Hunter and anthropologist Dr. Kinsey DanAllart, uncovering the truth behind deaths at a popular new nightclub. Will they deduce a logical explanation for the murders? Or will the three friends uncover a deeper conspiracy hiding the truth about what’s stalking their city’s streets?

Welcome to The Nightshade Cases, a series of twenty-one episodes in twenty-one weeks. Please note: this episodic series is based on the television show model, with screenwriting notations and shorter formats. There will be a complete mystery each week, with cliffhangers only occurring in the full season story line.

Book Review: Shadow Cursed

Shadow Cursed


Author: Gelo R. Fleisher
Release Date: March 21, 2013
Series: None
Genre: Fantasy | Fiction | Paranormal
Edition: mobi
Pages: 110
Publisher: Self-Published
Interest: Requested by author
Source: Author (Thanks a lot Gelo!)
Buy it here: Amazon

Blurb

Bolen is a thief, plying his trade under the spires of an ancient and sprawling city. Worried that he’s growing too old, Bolen has lined up a risky job, just to prove that he can still pull one off.
Tonight, he’s going to break into a nobleman’s vault and help himself to its contents. What he doesn’t know is that inside is the key to a secret as old as the city itself.
Kings have killed for it, demons have coveted it, priests have prayed for it, and in a few moments it will be in his hands. And when it is, the adventure of his life will begin.

Review

4Positives

Shadow Cursed is a beautiful tale of a thief named Bolen and how he lands in an unexpected situation and ultimately overcomes it. The character of Bolen is developed beautifully and I felt the connection with him almost instantly. The plot is quite simple but it’s simplicity is quite mesmerizing! It might sound weird but this book had an odd satisfying feel to it, the way fairy tales have on children. It made me feel that the world is a good place and that it’s not as wicked as we believe it is. This book made me feel like a child who is just hoping for a good ending throughout the entire read. I wanted to see Bolen happy at the end more than anything.

This book had me under it’s spell and that too a really fine one! It has some really good surprises which makes it a must read for everyone.

Negatives

None.

Conclusion

Shadow Cursed is a powerful short and simple read. I’d recommend it to everyone who loves to read a fine book.

You can also read this review at Goodreads | Leafmarks | Booklikes.

Other Stuff

Opening Line: “All through the city, the first signs of daylight made themselves known.”

Highlights: Simplicity of the plot.

Low-lights: None.

Memorable Quote:

But laying there, looking out over the city, he felt content. He was happy, truly satisfied for the first time that he could remember. He’d done something worthwhile, something that would last after he was dead and gone, and that felt good. “I don’t know what comes next. Maybe it doesn’t matter.”

Final Thoughts: A beautiful story.