I had high hopes going in reading Dead Spell by Belinda Frisch. I had heard a lot of good about it, and I have to say I was not disappointed! I couldI had high hopes going in reading Dead Spell by Belinda Frisch. I had heard a lot of good about it, and I have to say I was not disappointed! I could not put this book down!
Dead Spell follows teenagers Harmony Wolcott and Brea Miller as they attempt to figure out why a seemingly malicious spirit is haunting them, particularly Harmony. The deeper they go, the more confounding the mystery becomes. As I said, this book sinks its claws in and won’t let go, and it’s exciting to watch this mystery unfold. It always keeps you guessing.
What I have to give this book the most kudos for is how many chances it takes. For example, Harmony is an abusive and manipulative girl, and she easily could’ve been too unlikeable to be a protagonist, but you can’t help but feel for her and want to know what is happening to her. Frisch writes her incredibly well, in general. She isn’t your standard teen protagonist in a YA novel; she’s very real.
In fact, all of the characters in this book are real and relatable. My favorite is Adam, Harmony’s boyfriend. He’s a truly multi-layered character, and it’s really interesting to see him expand as a character throughout the book.
The story itself, however, is the strongest element. Frisch’s tale is well-constructed and quick-paced and will always keep your attention. If you haven’t picked up the book yet, definitely give it a read! ...more
As I was quite fond of Coral Moore’s recent novel, Broods of Fenrir, I knew I had to download this short which takes place in the same universe the moAs I was quite fond of Coral Moore’s recent novel, Broods of Fenrir, I knew I had to download this short which takes place in the same universe the moment I saw it. I had high hopes going in, and I was not disappointed.
This delicious story deepens the relationship between two of my favorite characters in the novel, Erik and Bera and leaves the reader wanting more in all the right ways. It’s very indicative of Moore’s style of writing, and if you’re unsure of whether or not you want to purchase and read Broods of Fenrir, definitely check this story out (though trust me, you DO want to purchase and read Broods of Fenrir). The file also includes the first chapter of the novel.
The story is very short, but its length didn’t bother me in the least. It’s still a complete one-shot. However, while I’ve had over a decade of reading fan fiction—which is often even shorter and much more incomplete—and was not troubled by the length of the piece, I can see where some might be.
Definitely give this story a look if you’re looking for something quick, steamy and decidedly well-written! ...more
One day Claire is a working mom with a deadbeat husband and the next day, she’s a super powerful vampire. It’s quite a change to adjust to4.5/5 Stars!
One day Claire is a working mom with a deadbeat husband and the next day, she’s a super powerful vampire. It’s quite a change to adjust to, but Claire not only manages, she thrives.
Kill Me by Alex Owens is a delightfully fun book that follows Claire as she adjusts to her new existence, but still manages to keep her humanity and dedication to her daughter intact. The book is written in quick and sometimes humorous prose that makes it an absolute joy to read. There are a few lines that are unforgettable (including a brief but hilarious explanation on Claire’s part as to why she hates the term “making love”).
The concept is a fairly original one, and it is nice to see a vampire who is still very human by the end of the book. Claire is an incredibly likeable character, one with whom I think many readers will be able to indentify. She really is the heart and soul of the book—moreso than many protagonists in this genre—and as a character, she drives the story on magnificently. She’s not the only character, though. Owens presents to the reader a cast of well-crafted characters including the sultry and mysterious Bette, the stoic Gregor and Creepy Clive, as Claire calls him.
The book gets a little steamy at times, but Claire’s vampire-sexual escapades are never presented in a trashy manner, and it never negatively affects the movement of the plot in any way.
Definitely give this book a try if you’re in the market for something a little quirky, a little dark and a lot of fun! ...more
As someone who has always been interested in paranormal investigation, real ghost stories really catch my attention. So, when I saw Willow3.5/5 stars.
As someone who has always been interested in paranormal investigation, real ghost stories really catch my attention. So, when I saw Willow Cross’s collection of true spooky tales was free for Kindle, I immediately picked it up.
The stories were both creepy and intriguing. The spirits in these pages are both benevolent and malevolent (or, at the very least, disturbing). Cross’s story of the shadow figure and stringy-haired man in the window in one house in which she’s lived is especially eerie.
The stories themselves—four in all—are definitely worth telling, but the storytelling itself is perhaps a bit too conversational at times. I appreciate the decision to make the stories very conversational since they are personal experiences, but I still would like to have seen the prose a wee bit more polished.
All the same, Haunted is an entertaining and spooky read. Definitely give it a look if you’re into real ghost stories! ...more
I picked up Paul Melhuish’s short story “Necroforms” on a whim last week and read it almost immediately. The story starts out simply enough4.5/5 Stars
I picked up Paul Melhuish’s short story “Necroforms” on a whim last week and read it almost immediately. The story starts out simply enough and could easily have taken a route countless other horror stories have taken. James Guest’s mother has died, and while he is forced to tend to the funeral preparations, odd things start to happen at the old woman’s house.
But Melhuish takes the story in a completely unexpected and eerie direction. I’ll keep this review spoiler-free, but know that this tale is not your standard ghost story!
The language is direct and very easy to read, but still chilling. There is a fantastic sense of atmosphere in the story, which takes place predominantly in a very remote area in the country. Really, my only complaint would be that the story ends too abruptly. The concept, however, is very original and offers a twist that I certainly didn’t see coming.
“Necroforms” is still free to download on Kindle at the moment, and I highly recommend it. It’s a creepy short story that certainly offers its fair share of scares! ...more
The Black Knight boys are back! I’m not sure why it took me so long to pick up the second book in John G. Hartness’s series, but I’m definitely glad IThe Black Knight boys are back! I’m not sure why it took me so long to pick up the second book in John G. Hartness’s series, but I’m definitely glad I finally got around to reading it. It was great to be reunited with the characters from the first book.
This book picks up where Hard Day’s Knight left off and has all the wit and off-the-wall humor of the first installment in the series. This time around, Jimmy and Greg are up against trolls and malicious fairies as they investigate a series of attacks in Charlotte. The case even takes them to Fairy Land where our vampire heroes end up—perish the thought!—sparkling.
While the book loses a bit of its direction in the middle, it picks back up again fairly quickly and brings it all home for a great final battle. It’s quick moving and entertaining, and there are some absolutely fantastic one-liners thrown in there as well. If you’ve read Hard Day’s Knight, definitely give Back in Black a go, and if you haven’t read Hard Day’s Knight, what’s wrong with you? Pick it up now!
Now I just need to see about getting my paws on the next book… ...more
Wow, I haven’t read such an emotionally-gripping book in a long time!
Broods of Fenrir is definitely not your average werewolf story. It’s violent andWow, I haven’t read such an emotionally-gripping book in a long time!
Broods of Fenrir is definitely not your average werewolf story. It’s violent and gritty, but at the same time very passionate. The bonds and rivalries between the characters in the book are so intense, you can’t help but be pulled in. Moore has created an incredibly complex society for her characters. She’s covered everything from brood etiquette to the treatment of females, and it makes for a very rich reading experience.
The story follows Brand Geirson, a werewolf who refuses to take his place as the ruler of the Broods of Fenrir, but then a gruesome murder throws him into conflict. Gripping and fast-paced, the book is a quick read. I couldn’t put it down!
Not only that, this book did something that very few books do: it made me cry. That is a difficult thing to do, let me tell you. I won’t spoil it for anyone, but there is a scene that brought me to tears I was so attached to the characters involved.
Definitely pick this one up if you’re looking for something dark and intense in the paranormal genre. ...more
I picked up Dead(ish) by Naomi Kramer for free on Christmas, and I immediately noticed something about the reviews. Either readers adored2 1/2 stars.
I picked up Dead(ish) by Naomi Kramer for free on Christmas, and I immediately noticed something about the reviews. Either readers adored it or were incredibly critical of it.
As always, I appear to be the odd man out. I’m so ‘middle-of-the-road’ with this short story, that I’m giving it 2.5/5. I didn’t adore it, but I certainly didn’t hate it, either.
The concept of the story is cute, and at times, the tale is laugh out loud funny. Dead(ish) follows a ghost as she attempts to solve the mystery behind her death and introduces the reader to some very memorable and amusing characters along the way. But while the characters themselves are fairly engaging, the plot ends up being a little scatterbrained and thin. The story would’ve benefited from a little more fleshing out. The format was also a little on the rough side, leaping too frequently from one point-of-view to another.
All in all, a cute story, but not without its flaws. ...more
I’m not sure what I was expecting when I picked up Lucifer’s Odyssey by Rex Jameson, but I know what I got was a thousand times better than anything II’m not sure what I was expecting when I picked up Lucifer’s Odyssey by Rex Jameson, but I know what I got was a thousand times better than anything I could’ve been expecting!
From the start of the book, Jameson drops the reader right into the action. We follow Lucifer, the Prince of the universe Chaos, as he returns home from Earth and fights to reclaim his kingdom. By this point, you’ve probably realized that this is NOT your standard Lucifer story. Rather, Jameson uses Christian mythology and modifies it to craft this complex and incredible universe. And when I say complex, I mean really, really complex! I was impressed throughout the entire book at just how much thought obviously went into the world-building for this novel.
The characters are all just as intriguing. My personal favorite was Sariel, Lucifer’s decidedly scuzzy brother. And Lucifer himself is a hero you’ll easily find yourself rooting for. Milton would be proud.
Other than an occasional unevenness in tone, the book is superbly written, sometimes outrageously funny, sometimes action-packed, sometimes even heartbreaking. I highly recommend Lucifer’s Odyssey to anyone looking for a great read that’s not your standard fare. ...more
Outstanding! The Woman in Black is delightfully creepy, and its style and tone are pitch perfect. It's been a long time since I was so drawn in by a bOutstanding! The Woman in Black is delightfully creepy, and its style and tone are pitch perfect. It's been a long time since I was so drawn in by a book. I couldn't put it down! It's a quick and fascinating read. Highly recommended!...more
As if hospitals weren’t scary enough, Matthew Bryan Laube takes it to the next level in Ancient Awakening. This hospital has been taken ov3 1/2 Stars.
As if hospitals weren’t scary enough, Matthew Bryan Laube takes it to the next level in Ancient Awakening. This hospital has been taken over by werewolves and vampires and even the scaliest, nastiest demons I’ve ever seen.
The book follows everyman cop Mike Samson and Ann Melakh, an unstable bio student, as they traverse the hospital and fight these monsters alongside Joseph Miller. Miller has a bit of an advantage, of course. He kills these things for a living.
Ancient Awakening is really fun. It is the book equivalent of a SyFy original movie, and I mean that in the best way possible! It never pretends to be something it’s not. This book is unadulterated demon butt-kicking from start to finish. And to liven up the journey even more, we’re given the incredibly entertaining Joseph Miller to guide us. Miller is a little crazy and a little brilliant, and he’s a real treat to read.
The book’s prose is admittedly a bit rocky at some points, occasionally relying too heavily on telling, rather than showing. It also took me a long time to warm up to the character of Ann. She seemed very whiny and petty at first, but as the book progressed, she grew on me. The crazier she got, the more I liked her!
I’d recommend this book to someone looking for a quick and fun read. It was definitely entertaining, and I’m looking forward to reading the next book with Joseph Miller! ...more
It took me a while to get into this one, but I loved it once a did! Definitely give it a chance if you're on the fence; it picks up. The narrative voiIt took me a while to get into this one, but I loved it once a did! Definitely give it a chance if you're on the fence; it picks up. The narrative voice is very readable, and the characters, though thoroughly unlikeable in the traditional regard, are very engaging! A fascinating read....more