Cherry Mischievous

for the love of SciFi/Fantasy

A PROMISE OF FIRE

 

A Promise Of Fire by Amanda Bouchet
Book 1 of The Kingmaker Chronicles
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: paperback

 

 

About A Promise Of Fire:

Catalia “Cat” Fisa is a powerful clairvoyant known as the Kingmaker. This smart-mouthed soothsayer has no interest in her powers and would much rather fly under the radar, far from the clutches of her homicidal mother. But when an ambitious warlord captures her, she may not have a choice…

Griffin is intent on bringing peace to his newly conquered realm in the magic-deprived south. When he discovers Cat is the Kingmaker, he abducts her. But Cat will do everything in her power to avoid her dangerous destiny and battle her captor at every turn. Although up for the battle, Griffin would prefer for Cat to help his people willingly, and he’s ready to do whatever it takes to coax her…even if that means falling in love with her.

Source: Info in the About A Promise Of Fire was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27015399-a-promise-of-fire on 06/08/2017.

 

A PROMISE OF FIRE

My Thoughts:

For a minute there I thought I was reading a Harlequin Romance! But no, just a fantastic epic fantasy with a strong romantic bent. This book anyway. I’m not sure if there would be another couple in the next installment. Might or might not be. From the impression I got in this book, this series is about our leading couple and their epic journeys with magic and dragons and evil villains. And, oh… a prophecy. Don’t forget the prophecy! Formulaic… eh?! Its not the formula, it’s how the tale is told, that wins the game! And this one did! Win, I mean. So why not a five, then? That’s because it ended in a cliffhanger. Although I expected that, I was still sour about it. Though the book did end the plotline in the book, it also left a tantalizing beginning of the next book which continues on the main story arc for this series. Which of course how serieses goes. But that don’t mean it’s still not irritating!

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 4
Writing Style = 4
Ending = 4
World building = 4.5
Cover art = 5
Pace = 4.5
Plot = 4.5

 

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 cherries

 

Books In The Kingmaker Chronicles:

 

www.kingmakerchronicles.com

 

About Amanda Bouchet
Amanda Bouchet

Amanda Bouchet grew up in New England where she spent much of her time tromping around in the woods and making up grand adventures in her head. It was inevitable that one day she would start writing them down. Drawing on her Greek heritage for the setting and on her love of all things daring and romantic for the rest, her debut trilogy, The Kingmaker Chronicles, took form. She writes what she loves to read: epic exploits, steamy romance, and characters that make you laugh and cry.

Her first novel, A Promise of Fire, won several Romance Writers of America chapter contests, including the Orange Rose Contest and the paranormal category of the prestigious Golden Pen.

A French master’s graduate and former English teacher, Amanda lives in Paris, France. She met her husband while studying abroad, and the family now includes two bilingual children who will soon be correcting her French.

 


 

Advertisements

05/10/2017 Posted by | 4 cherries, book reivew, book review, Cherry's review, Cherry's reviews, epic fantasy, paperback, review | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

SECRETS IN DEATH

 

SECRETS IN DEATH by JD Robb

Secrets In Death by JD Robb
Book 45 of the In Death series
Narrated by Susan Ericksen
Genre: scifi crime fiction
Format: ebook & audiobookAudible Books

 

 

About Secrets In Death:

The chic Manhattan nightspot Du Vin is not the kind of place Eve Dallas would usually patronize, and it’s not the kind of bar where a lot of blood gets spilled. But that’s exactly what happens one cold February evening.

The mortally wounded woman is Larinda Mars, a self-described “social information reporter,” or as most people would call it, a professional gossip. As it turns out, she was keeping the most shocking stories quiet, for profitable use in her side business as a blackmailer. Setting her sights on rich, prominent marks, she’d find out what they most wanted to keep hidden and then bleed them dry. Now someone’s done the same to her, literally—with a knife to the brachial artery.

Eve didn’t like Larinda Mars. But she likes murder even less. To find justice for this victim, she’ll have to plunge into the dirty little secrets of all the people Larinda Mars victimized herself. But along the way, she may be exposed to some information she really didn’t want to know…

Source: Info in the “About Secrets In Death” was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31824122-secrets-in-death on 30/04/2017.

 

SECRETS IN DEATH by JD Robb (UK)

My Thoughts:

Forty-five books down the line and and I am still buying the In Death series books. Shouldn’t it have waned by now? But the thing is, I still look forward to it every year. I like the way their lives evolved and its like meeting old friends again. Once a year. A lot of the scenes are unrealistic of course, something that would only happen in a book but never in real life, so why is it so easy to suspend disbelief? The only answer I could find to that, is that the author has a way of telling things and weaving a story that makes it easy for readers to believe in it. It’s masterful story telling quality! And that probably also explains the staying power of this series. However, this particular book seems to have a… just slightly…
a tiny tinee… predictable villain. Or maybe I am just reading too many In Death books…

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 5
Story itself = 4
Writing Style = 5
Ending = 5
World building = 5
Cover art = 4
Pace = (13 hrs & 2 mins listening time)
Plot = 4.5
Narration = 4.5

 

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 cherries

 


 

FTC Disclosure:
Ebook and audiobook copies of the book were purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

 

09/09/2017 Posted by | 5 cherries, audible, audible.co.uk, audiobook, audiobook review, audiobooks, book review, Cherry's review, Cherry's reviews, crime fiction, ebook, In Death series, JD Robb, kindle, kindle ebook, Lt. Eve Dallas, review, reviews, Roark, science fiction, Susan Ericksen | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

PRIESTESS OF WAR

 

Priestess Of War by Trevor H. Cooley
Book 10 of The Bowl Of Souls series
Read by James Foster
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobookAudiobook

 

 

About Priestess Of War:

BOOK FIVE OF THE JHARRO GROVE SAGA

Born of war and kept young only by the darkest of magic, the Dark Prophet’s most powerful priestess has returned to the Trafalgan Mountains to take control of the Black Lake’s mindless evil. Now, with a growing army of the infested and dead under her power, she turns her gaze on Dremaldria.

Fist’s chances of helping his former tribe destroy the Black Lake are bleak at best. The combined help of the Academy and the Mage School may not be enough to help him defeat The Priestess of War.

Source: Info in the About Priestess Of War was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33561710-priestess-of-war on 05/08/2017.

 

My Thoughts:

I’ve had a copy of this book in my phone for the longest time and resisting reading because I did not want to read it before Behemoth is released because I would want to dive into the next book as soon as I hit the cliffhanger ending of this book. Ten instalments down the line, I know how the ending of the books in this series goes. But this time around we actually get some sort of a closure! Hurrah!! Some threads in the story arc are still hanging, of course, but we got an ending on one of the major plot lines! And I like that a lot. And the fact that I got to read on with the next book as soon as I hit the cliffhanger ending negated the cliffhanger-ending-syndrome depression. This is the best book yet in the series. But to get here you have to read through the previous books first because it would make more sense than jumping straight into this book without reading the previous books first. Do I love this book? Oh, yeah!! And I got to read a lot about my favourite ogre too! Kudos to this book!! So why does the book still not get a 5 out of 5 then? Because it still ended in a cliffhanger ending.

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 4
Writing Style = 4
Ending = 4.5
World building = 5
Cover art = 3.5
Pace = 3
Plot = 4
Narration = 5

 

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 cherries

 

Books In The Bowl Of Souls Series:
 

Book 1: EYE OF THE MOONRAT   Book: 1.5: HILT'S PRIDE   Book 2: MESSENGER OF THE DARK PROPHET   Book 3: HUNT OF THE BANDHAM   Book 4: THE WAR OF STARDEON   Book 5: MOTHER OF THE MOONRAT   Book 6: TARAH WOODBLADE   Book 7: PROTECTOR OF THE GROVE   Book 8: THE OGRE APPRENTICE   Book 9: THE TROLL KING   Book 10: PRIESTESS OF WAR   Book 11: BEHEMOTH

 

The Author
Trevor H. Cooley

Since putting out his first book: Eye of the Moonrat in May of 2012, Trevor H. Cooley has sold over 200,000 copies of his books in ebook and audio formats.

He was born in South Carolina and has lived all around the United states, including Utah, New Mexico, Michigan and Tennessee.

His love of reading started in the second grade with Lloyd Alexander’s Chronicles of Prydain series. He couldn’t get enough and continued with David Eddings, Tolkein, Robert Jordan, Stephen King, and many others. Since then, all he wanted was to become a published writer.

The characters and concepts that eventually became the Bowl of Souls series started in his teens. He wrote short stories, kept notebooks full of ideas, and generally dreamed about the world constantly. There were several attempts at starting a novel over the years.

Not long after he was married, his wife told him to stop talking about the story and write it down. Many years and rewrites and submissions and rejection letters later, he finally put the books on Amazon. In August of 2013 he quit his day job and started writing full time.

 

The Narrator
James Foster

James Foster was born in Björk’s house in Iceland and grew up on Easter Island, where his parents were giant stone heads. He has the ability to fire beams of tacos out of his hands and he can turn his legs into tigers. On Sundays, James enjoys reading Family Circus and traveling through time. His favorite color is greenish-transparent and his favorite movie is the one you just watched. James is in charge of uploading the staff bios to the website, and no one has checked over his work.

 


 

FTC Disclosure:
This book was purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

 

05/09/2017 Posted by | 4 cherries, audible, audiobook, audiobook review, book review, Cherry's review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, epic fantasy, kindle ebook, review | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

WILDFIRE

Wildfire by Ilona Andrews
Book 3 of the Hidden Legacy series
Read by Renee Raudman
Genre: urban fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobook

 

 

About Wildfire:

Just when Nevada Baylor has finally come to accept the depths of her magical powers, she also realizes she’s fallen in love. Connor “Mad” Rogan is in many ways her equal when it comes to magic, but she’s completely out of her elements when it comes to her feelings for him. To make matters more complicated, an old flame comes back into Rogan’s life…

Rogan knows there’s nothing between him and his ex-fiance, Rynda Sherwood. But as Nevada begins to learn more about her past, her power, and her potential future, he knows she will be faced with choices she never dreamed of and the promise of a life spent without him.

As Nevada and Rogan race to discover the whereabouts of Rynda’s kidnapped husband and are forced to confront Nevada’s grandmother, who may or may not have evil motives, these two people must decide if they can trust in each other or allow everything to go up in smoke.

Source: Info in the About Wildfire was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27422533-wildfire on 31/07/2017.

 

My Thoughts:

I’ve read somewhere that the author only signed a three-book contract with this series,
so a trilogy then, however the ending of this book left a few issues hanging in the storyline which indicates that there will be more books coming out. I certainly hope so because I would like to read more about Zeus and Matilda! But I think at this point it is up in the air. So if this happens to be the last book in this world, I would really be pissed off!! Because those issues that were left hanging, were quite major ones.

As usual the authors did not disappoint! Masterful weaving of a tale, compelling story telling quality, and wonderful world building with memorable characters! Looking forward to hearing that the publisher offered another three-book contract with the authors!

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 5
Story itself = 4.5
Writing Style = 5
Ending = 4.5
World building = 5
Cover art = 4
Pace = 4
Plot = 5
Narration = 4.5

 

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 cherries

 

Hidden Legacy Books:

BURN FOR MEBook 2: WHITE HOTBook 3: WILDFIRE




 


 

05/08/2017 Posted by | 5 cherries, audible, audiobook, audiobook review, book review, Cherry's review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, Ilona Andrews, Renée Raudman, review, reviews, urban fantasy | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

WHITE HOT

White Hot by Ilona Andrews
Book 2 of the Hidden Legacy series
Read by Renee Raudman
Genre: urban fantasy
Format: paperback, ebook, & audiobook

 

 

About White Hot:

The Hidden Legacy series by #1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews continues as Nevada and Rogan navigate a world where magic is the norm…and their relationship burns hot

Nevada Baylor has a unique and secret skill — she knows when people are lying—and she’s used that magic (along with plain, hard work) to keep her colorful and close-knit family’s detective agency afloat. But her new case pits her against the shadowy forces that almost destroyed the city of Houston once before, bringing Nevada back into contact with Connor “Mad” Rogan.

Rogan is a billionaire Prime — the highest rank of magic user — and as unreadable as ever, despite Nevada’s “talent.” But there’s no hiding the sparks between them. Now that the stakes are even higher, both professionally and personally, and their foes are unimaginably powerful, Rogan and Nevada will find that nothing burns like ice …

Source: Info in the About White Hot was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22303684-white-hot on 09/06/2017.

 

My Thoughts:

As usual, Ilona Andrews, delivers! But then again I am an old die-hard fan of this author duo, so I am admittedly biased. But having said that, it does not belie the fact that this book is a fantastic read! Being the second book in the series, the world building and
character development has already been established in Book 1. And those masterful world building, character development, and story telling quality are carried on with this book, as expected. Safe to say that this is a 5 out of 5 read! The only down side is that I have to wait for the next book and I am not very patient! 😦   And being Book 2 in the series, I suggest that one read Book 1 first before reading this book. It’ll just make more sense. And, you wouldn’t be cheating yourself out of the wonderful reading experience of reading this series in order rather than out of order.

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 5
Story itself = 4.5
Writing Style = 5
Ending = 4.5
World building = 5
Cover art = 4
Pace = 4
Plot = 5
Narration = 4.5

 

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 cherries

 

Hidden Legacy Books:

BURN FOR ME   Book 2: WHITE HOT   Book 3: WILDFIRE




 


 

05/07/2017 Posted by | 5 cherries, audible, audiobook, audiobook review, book review, Cherry's review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, Ilona Andrews, kindle ebook, Renée Raudman, review, urban fantasy | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

THE BATTLEMAGE (Summoner Book 3)

 

The Battlemage by Taran Matharu
Book 3 of the Summoner series
Read by Dominic Thorburn
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobookAudiobook

 

 

About The Battlemage:

One boy’s ability to summon demons will change the fate of an empire … The epic conclusion to the fantasy trilogy described as ‘Harry Potter meets Lord of the Rings meets Pokemon’.

After the thrilling cliffhanger at the end of book two, we rejoin Fletcher and his friends in the ether, where they must undertake a mortally dangerous quest, all the while avoiding capture by enemies and facing foes more terrifying than anything they have yet encountered.

But this is nothing compared to what truly lies ahead for Fletcher, as his nemesis, albino orc Khan, is on a mission to destroy Hominum and everything and everyone that Fletcher loves.

Epic battles, dramatic revelations and breathtaking drama await in the third and final book in the New York Times bestselling Summoner series.

Source: Info in the About The Battlemage was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31687423-the-battlemage on 09/05/2017.

 

Ignatius

Ignatious

My Thoughts:

I like the story telling quality of this author, the world building is beautiful and the character development is solid. What I do not like is the author’s tendency to have a cliffhanger ending and the good guys don’t necessarily win. However, this being the third in a trilogy, we got a nice ending. Hurray!! Having said that, there is another book in this series, I presume to be the first in another trilogy or so, in this world. I like the thought that this book is not the end of it because I came to like this world so I am very happy to see more books coming out for this series and got an ending with this book at the same time! Kudos for this book!

There are a few issues in the story that I find a little too unrealistic, I had to force myself to turn a blind eye on them so as not to mar the beauty of the book… I mean, like, Zacharrias Forsyth and Inquisitor Rook are not stupid, and they could not immediately see that the staff could broadcast them to the entire nation?! So they condemn themselves and confess to boot, within earshot of the staff!! I mean… WTF! That is not just a weak plot, that is ridiculous! And that is the main reason that this book did not get a 5 out of 5. But despite that, this book did give an enjoyable reading time… you just have to be good at “selective inattention” and ignore weakness in the plot like that. Besides, Ignatious took a front and center role in the story! Who could begrudge that!!

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4.5
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 3.5
Writing Style = 4.5
Ending = 4
World building = 4.5
Cover art = 5
Pace = 4
Plot = 3
Narration = 5

 

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 cherries

 

Books In The Summoner Series
Summoner 0.5: ORIGINSSummoner 0.6: A FINE WELCOME: OTHELLO'S JOURNEYSummoner 1: THE NOVICESummoner 2: THE INQUISITIONSummoner 3: THE BATTLEMAGESummoner 4: THE OUTCAST

 

The Author
Taran Matharu

Taran Matharu is a New York Times bestselling author. He was born in London in 1990 and found a passion for reading at a very early age. His love for stories developed into a desire to create his own during early adolescence, beginning his first book at 9 years old.

Straight after graduating with a First Class degree in Business Administration, Taran was keen to explore a new avenue and get inside the publishing world, landing an internship in Digital Sales at Penguin Random House, from June to September 2013.

Thereafter, while taking time off to travel, Taran began to write ‘Summoner’ in November 2013 at the age of 22, taking part in ‘Nanowrimo 2013’.

Thanks to Wattpad.com and updating daily, its popularity dramatically increased, reaching over 3 million reads in less than six months.

After being featured by NBC News, Taran decided to launch his professional writing career and has never looked back.

His SUMMONER series is published by Hodder Children’s (Hachette) in the UK, Australia and Commonwealth, Feiwel and Friends (Macmillan) in the US and Canada, Hachette Jeunesse in France, Heyne in Germany, Planeta in Spain, Crown in Taiwan, Record in Brazil, EKSMO in Russia, Jaguar in Poland, Ecliptic in Bulgaria, Alpress in the Czech Republic, Ithaki in Turkey and Unieboek in the Netherlands.

 


 

FTC Disclosure:
This book was purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

 

14/05/2017 Posted by | 4 cherries, audiobook, book review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, kindle ebook, review | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

THE INQUISITION (Summoner Book 2)

 

The Inquisition by Taran Matharu
Book 2 of the Summoner series
Read by Dominic Thorburn
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobookAudiobook

 

 

About The Inquisition:

A year has passed since the Tournament.

Fletcher and Ignatius have been locked away in Pelt’s dungeons, but now they must face a trial at the hands of the Inquisition, a powerful institution controlled by those who would delight in Fletcher’s downfall.

The trial is haunted by ghosts from the past with shocking revelations about Fletcher’s origins, but he has little time to dwell on them; the graduating students of Vocans are to be sent deep into the orc jungles to complete a dangerous mission for the king and his council. If they fail, the orcish armies will rise to power beyond anything the Empire has ever seen.

With loyal friends Othello and Sylva by his side, Fletcher must battle his way to the heart of Orcdom and save Hominum from destruction… or die trying.

Source: Info in the About The Inquisition was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25689056-the-inquisition on 14/02/2017.

 

Athena

Image Source: chepren

My Thoughts:

I like the story telling quality of this author, the world building is beautiful and the character development is solid. What I do not like is the author’s tendency to have a cliffhanger ending and the good guys don’t necessarily win. What a bummer!

Annnd… I have a new favourite… Athena! Apparently she’s a Gryphowl.

The down side of reading the second part of the story after a year of reading the first part, is that I have forgotten most of the characters and/or the plot. I struggled to recall who is who for the first two-thirds of the book to keep up with the story. Consequently the flow was not very fast at all.

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4.5
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 3.5
Writing Style = 4
Ending = 1
World building = 4.5
Cover art = 5
Pace = 2.5
Plot = 4
Narration = 4

 

Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 5 cherries

 

Other Books In The Summoner Series
Summoner 0.5: ORIGINSSummoner 0.6: A FINE WELCOME: OTHELLO'S JOURNEYSummoner 1: THE NOVICESummoner 2: THE INQUISITIONSummoner 3: THE BATTLEMAGE

 

The Author
Taran Matharu

Taran Matharu is a New York Times bestselling author. He was born in London in 1990 and found a passion for reading at a very early age. His love for stories developed into a desire to create his own during early adolescence, beginning his first book at 9 years old.

Straight after graduating with a First Class degree in Business Administration, Taran was keen to explore a new avenue and get inside the publishing world, landing an internship in Digital Sales at Penguin Random House, from June to September 2013.

Thereafter, while taking time off to travel, Taran began to write ‘Summoner’ in November 2013 at the age of 22, taking part in ‘Nanowrimo 2013’.

Thanks to Wattpad.com and updating daily, its popularity dramatically increased, reaching over 3 million reads in less than six months.

After being featured by NBC News, Taran decided to launch his professional writing career and has never looked back.

His SUMMONER series is published by Hodder Children’s (Hachette) in the UK, Australia and Commonwealth, Feiwel and Friends (Macmillan) in the US and Canada, Hachette Jeunesse in France, Heyne in Germany, Planeta in Spain, Crown in Taiwan, Record in Brazil, EKSMO in Russia, Jaguar in Poland, Ecliptic in Bulgaria, Alpress in the Czech Republic, Ithaki in Turkey and Unieboek in the Netherlands.

 


 

FTC Disclosure:
This book was purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

 

09/05/2017 Posted by | 4 cherries, audible, audiobook, book review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, epic fantasy, kindle book, review | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A GAME OF GHOSTS

 

A Game Of Ghosts by John Connolly
Read by Jeff Harding
Book 15 of the Charlie Parker series
Genre: crime fiction
Format: kindle ebook & audiobook

 

 

About A Game Of Ghosts:

It is deep winter. The darkness is unending.

The private detective named Jaycob Eklund has vanished, and Charlie Parker is dispatched to track him down. Parker’s employer, Edgar Ross, an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, has his own reasons for wanting Eklund found.

Eklund is no ordinary investigator. He is obsessively tracking a series of homicides and disappearances, each linked to reports of hauntings. Now Parker will be drawn into Eklund’s world, a realm in which the monstrous Mother rules a crumbling criminal empire, in which men strike bargains with angels, and in which the innocent and guilty alike are pawns in a game of ghosts . . .

Source: Info in the About A Game Of Ghosts was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31351922-a-game-of-ghosts on 07/04/2017.

 

Buy Link(s):
    Audible Books

 

My Thoughts:

I was eagerly awaiting this book because I wanted to know how the media, i.e., news & entertainment, are following up on Jerome Burnel‘s media furor… unfortunately, there is nothing about Jerome Burnel in this book. The only part of the Jerome Burnel book that remained is Moxie Castin. It seems he is going to have a long-term role in the series to replace Aimee Price as Charlie‘s lawyer. Not bad for him and for the series. Another plus with this instalment in the Charlie Parker series is that we see more of cute Sam! And Angel & Louise! *yey*!! As if that is not enough goodness, Jeff Harding effected a very realistic Welsh accent for one of the characters! That made me smile! However, I don’t know why John Connolly killed one of the anti-hero, though… I hope that there would be some sort of explanation in the subsequent books. It was just too sad to just let it go like that.

The end was kind of an anti-climactic. But it was still a good read.

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 5
Story itself = 5
Writing Style = 5
Ending = 4
World building = 5
Cover art = 4
Pace = (13 hrs & 9 mins)
Plot = 5
Narration = 5

 

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 cherries

 

Books In The Charlie Parker Series:

                           

 

About John Connolly
John Connolly

John Connolly was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1968 and has, at various points in his life, worked as a journalist, a barman, a local government official, a waiter and a dogsbody at Harrods department store in London. He studied English in Trinity College, Dublin and journalism at Dublin City University, subsequently spending five years working as a freelance journalist for The Irish Times newspaper, to which he continues to contribute.

He is based in Dublin but divides his time between his native city and the United States.

This page is administered by John’s assistant, Clair, on John’s behalf. If you’d like to communicate with John directly, you can do so by writing to contact-at-johnconnollybooks.com, or by following him on Twitter at @JConnollyBooks.

 

About Jeff Harding
Jeff Harding

Jeff Harding is one of the most active American actors based in Britain. He is regularly seen in film and TV but he maintains interest in fringe theatre. He is particularly active in voice-over and radio. Having competed in rowing for many years, he still lives by the Thames and rows regularly – an appropriate sport for the reader of Ben Hur.

 


 

FTC Disclosure:
This book was purchased with private funds.
 

30/04/2017 Posted by | 5 cherries, audiobook, book review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, kindle ebook, reviews | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

THE TROLL KING

 

The Troll King by Trevor H. Cooley
Book 9 of The Bowl Of Souls series
Read by James Foster
Genre: epic fantasy
Format: ebook & audiobookAudiobook

 

 

About The Troll King:

The Jharro Grove Saga: Book Four

He was born a king. Half troll and half man, he crawled from the womb of a god and found himself leader of a deformed but powerful race. As he struggles to lead his people Mellinda slithers into their midst. She wields the Rings of Stardeon and she has her own plans for his people.

A prophet has been taken. A demon army joins the enemies of the grove. Will Justan’s might and Tarah Woodblade’s powers be enough to help Jhonate’s people protect the Jharro Grove? It may all depend on the choices made by The Troll King.

Source: Info in the About The Troll King was taken from GoodReads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26577313-the-troll-king on 13/03/2017.

 

My Thoughts:

This series has taken on the multiple thread kind of writing style. The book tells the stories of the different protagonists in their own different journeys each in their own thread. The book jumps from thread to thread every couple of chapters or so. Say I have been reading about Fist in the Trafalgar mountains for the last couple of chapters. Then the next chapter talks about Justan in Malaroo. While immersed in my favourite ogre, Fist‘s, story, I have forgotten what had happened to Justan and had to go back and read about Justan‘s thread before I could continue reading the next chapter. This slowed the pace of this book right down to a crawl. Not only that, it disrupts the continuity of the story flow which is really annoying. The previous books in this series had used this kind of writing style before but not as prevalent as in this book. This brought the rating of this book right down despite me being an old fan of this series already. And then of course there is the cliffhanger ending…. Safe to say that I wasn’t very happy with this book… but it gotta be read if I want to continue reading this series…. **pout**

I really didn’t like the way Qenzic treated Lyramoor at the jail cave in the Thunder People territory. Let Qenzic go through what Lyramoor had gone through in his slavery days and see if Qenzic would still be sane! The fact that Lyramoor is still a highly functional individual and loyal to a fault to Qenzic who flipping doesn’t deserve any of that loyalty at all, is a blinking miracle!… So there are issues in this book that I am quite passionate about… or really, really do not like… or riles me up….

I don’t know whether it is the author’s magic that is waning or it is me getting disenchanted… either way, this book is not the best in this series.

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 4
Character development = 4.5
Story itself = 3
Writing Style = 2
Ending = 2
World building = 4
Cover art = 3.5
Pace = 1
Plot = 3
Narration = 5

 

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 cherries

 

Books In The Bowl Of Souls Series:
 

Book 1: EYE OF THE MOONRAT   Book: 1.5: HILT'S PRIDE   Book 2: MESSENGER OF THE DARK PROPHET   Book 3: HUNT OF THE BANDHAM   Book 4: THE WAR OF STARDEON   Book 5: MOTHER OF THE MOONRAT   Book 6: TARAH WOODBLADE   Book 7: PROTECTOR OF THE GROVE   Book 8: THE OGRE APPRENTICE   Book 9: THE TROLL KING   Book 10: PRIESTESS OF WAR   Book 11: BEHEMOTH

 

The Author
Trevor H. Cooley

Since putting out his first book: Eye of the Moonrat in May of 2012, Trevor H. Cooley has sold over 200,000 copies of his books in ebook and audio formats.

He was born in South Carolina and has lived all around the United states, including Utah, New Mexico, Michigan and Tennessee.

His love of reading started in the second grade with Lloyd Alexander’s Chronicles of Prydain series. He couldn’t get enough and continued with David Eddings, Tolkein, Robert Jordan, Stephen King, and many others. Since then, all he wanted was to become a published writer.

The characters and concepts that eventually became the Bowl of Souls series started in his teens. He wrote short stories, kept notebooks full of ideas, and generally dreamed about the world constantly. There were several attempts at starting a novel over the years.

Not long after he was married, his wife told him to stop talking about the story and write it down. Many years and rewrites and submissions and rejection letters later, he finally put the books on Amazon. In August of 2013 he quit his day job and started writing full time.

 

The Narrator
James Foster

James Foster was born in Björk’s house in Iceland and grew up on Easter Island, where his parents were giant stone heads. He has the ability to fire beams of tacos out of his hands and he can turn his legs into tigers. On Sundays, James enjoys reading Family Circus and traveling through time. His favorite color is greenish-transparent and his favorite movie is the one you just watched. James is in charge of uploading the staff bios to the website, and no one has checked over his work.

 


 

FTC Disclosure:
This book was purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

 

15/04/2017 Posted by | 3 cherries, audiobook, book review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, kindle ebook, reviews | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

ETCHED IN BONE

 

The Others #5: ETCHED IN BONE

Etched In Bone by Anne Bishop
Book 5 of The Others series
Read by Alexandra Harris
Genre: urban fantasy
Format: hardback, ebook, & audiobookAudiobook

 

 

About Etched In Bone:

After a human uprising was brutally put down by the Elders — a primitive and lethal form of the Others — the few cities left under human control are far-flung. And the people within them now know to fear the no-man’s-land beyond their borders — and the darkness…

As some communities struggle to rebuild, Lakeside Courtyard has emerged relatively unscathed, though Simon Wolfgard, its wolf shifter leader, and blood prophet Meg Corbyn must work with the human pack to maintain the fragile peace. But all their efforts are threatened when Lieutenant Montgomery’s shady brother arrives, looking for a free ride and easy pickings.

With the humans on guard against one of their own, tensions rise, drawing the attention of the Elders, who are curious about the effect such an insignificant predator can have on a pack. But Meg knows the dangers, for she has seen in the cards how it will all end — with her standing beside a grave…

Source: Info in the About Etched In Bone was taken from http://happyeverafter.usatoday.com/2016/06/23/etched-in-bone-cover-reveal-excerpt-anne-bishop on 25/06/2016.

 

Excerpt :

Windsday, Messis 1

Eager to join his friends for an early morning run, Simon Wolfgard, leader of the Lakeside Courtyard, hurried toward the terra indigene Wolves who were using trees and shrubs for camouflage as they watched the paved road that looped the Courtyard. Actually, they were watching the man who was riding on the road at an easy pace.

[It’s Kowalski,] Blair growled. It was a soft growl, but the human suddenly scanned the area as if his little ears had caught the sound.

[On a bicycle,] Nathan added.

[We gave him permission to ride on the paved roads,] Simon said, a little concerned about their focused attention on a human they knew fairly well.

Karl Kowalski was one of the human police officers who worked directly with the terra indigene to minimize conflicts between humans and Others. Because of that, he had been labeled a Wolf lover and had had his share of conflicts with other humans. The latest incident happened last week when a car “accidentally” swerved and almost hit Kowalski while he was taking a bicycle ride before work. Because the terra indigene viewed that as a threat to a member of their human pack, Simon, Vladimir Sanguinati, and Henry Beargard—members of the Courtyard’s Business Association—decided to allow the human pack to ride on the Courtyard’s paved roads.

Simon had thought all the Wolves had been told about the Business Association’s decision—especially Nathan, who was the watch Wolf at the Liaison’s Office, and Blair, who was the Courtyard’s dominant enforcer—but this was the first time any of the humans had ventured to ride on a road that still had “Trespassers Will Be Eaten” signs posted as a warning.

[Bicycle, Simon,] Blair’s growl wasn’t as soft this time.

Must have been loud enough for human ears because Kowalski started to pedal a little faster.

Oh. Bicycle. Now Simon understood the real focus of the Wolves’ attention and excitement. Humans had ridden bicycles up to the Green Complex as well as a few other places in the Courtyard, and the Wolves had been intrigued by the two-wheeled vehicles. But those instances had been about transportation to or from a task. This could be something else.

[A game of chase?] Jane, the Wolfgard bodywalker, asked hopefully.

[Kowalski could be play-prey,] Nathan said.

[Does he know how to play chase?] Blair asked.

[He’s a police officer,] Nathan replied. [He chases other humans all the time.]

[Doesn’t mean he understands our game.] Simon thought Nathan’s opinion of police work was skewed more toward hopeful than accurate. Still, they could offer to play. If Kowalski didn’t accept, they would just enjoy a run. But…bicycle. Simon really wanted to chase one. [Let’s find out.]

The Wolves charged up the road, Simon and Blair in the lead as they swiftly closed the distance between the pack and their play-prey. But would they have a game?

Kowalski looked back. His eyes widened—and he pedaled faster.

Yes!

[We don’t catch, only chase,] Simon said.

[He’s fast!] Jane surged ahead of the males, pulling up alongside the bicycle’s back wheel in seconds.

[Don’t grab the wheels,] Nathan said. [If you catch a tooth in the spokes you could break your jaw or worse.]

[I was listening when Officer Karl told the puppies about the dangers of biting wheels,] Jane snapped, clearly offended by Nathan’s unwanted warning. She moved up a little more, now in position to play-bite Kowalski’s calf.

Kowalski glanced at Jane and pedaled faster. Instead of going over the bridge that would take them into the Hawkgard section—and commit the human to the big loop within the Courtyard’s three hundred acres—Kowalski turned onto the road that ran alongside the Elementals’ lake, heading back toward the Green Complex.

The Wolves ran, maintaining their distance even when Kowalski slowed down while going up a rise. They took turns pacing the bicycle and pushing their prey to run and run. Or pedal and pedal. As they reached the intersection with the Courtyard’s main road, Kowalski swung left toward the Green Complex instead of turning right toward the Market Square.

Most of the pack, having slowed to a trot as their prey tired, circled back toward the Wolfgard complex. Nathan headed for the Market Square and the Liaison’s Office where he would keep track of the deliverymen and guard Meg Corbyn, the Courtyard’s Human Liaison. Simon and Blair followed Kowalski until they reached the Green Complex. Then Blair continued on to the Utilities Complex while Simon dashed for the water trough in the common area that formed the open center of the Courtyard’s only multispecies complex. He lapped water, then shifted to his human form and dunked his head, flinging water as he stood up and tossed his dark hair away from his face. He splashed his arms and chest, then grinned when Kowalski parked the bicycle and approached the trough warily.

“That was a great game of chase!” Simon said happily. “You understand how to be play-prey.”

“I do?”

“Yes.” Simon cocked his head, puzzled by the human’s wariness. Hadn’t they just played, had fun? “Want some water?”

“Thanks.” Kowalski splashed water on his face and neck, then on his arms. But he didn’t drink.

Simon pondered the not drinking for a moment. Humans were clever, invasive predators who had recently shown the terra indigene once again why they could never be fully trusted—not even by each other. But physically they were so much weaker than other kinds of predators. This not drinking, for example. Nothing wrong with the water in the trough. Someone had already drained yesterday’s water, using it on the potted tree and other plants in the open area, and refilled the trough with fresh water for drinking and splashing. Humans would drink water pumped from the well if it was in a glass or a bucket or some other small container but couldn’t drink the same water from a shared outdoor container?

It made him wonder how they had survived as a species long enough to become such a problem.

“So who doesn’t understand about play-prey?” Kowalski asked, rubbing a hand over his face.

“The female pack. Every time we invited them to play, they stopped riding their bicycles and asked if they could help.” Simon spread his arms in a what’s that all about? gesture. Then he pointed at Kowalski. “But you invited us to play, and we all had a good run.”

Kowalski snorted a soft laugh. “Well, I sure had a good run.”

“Since the females can’t pedal as far or as fast as you, maybe they could play chase with the puppies.” The pups would learn how to run as a pack without the risk of being kicked by real prey.

Simon studied Kowalski, who studied him in turn.

“I’ll talk to Ruthie,” Kowalski finally said.

They both heard the clink of glassware and looked toward the screened summer room below Meg Corbyn’s apartment.

“Must be later than I realized,” Kowalski said. “I’d better go home and get cleaned up for work.”

Simon watched the man walk toward the bicycle—and the summer room. For a moment, it looked like Kowalski was going to go in and talk to Meg, and Simon felt his teeth lengthen to Wolf size as his lips pulled back in a silent snarl. But Kowalski just raised a hand in greeting, said, “Morning, Meg,” and rode away.

Simon walked around the trough, then stopped suddenly when he realized he was naked in his human form. It had never mattered until Meg came to live in the Courtyard. But humans reacted in various ways to seeing each other without clothing, even when clothing wasn’t needed for protection or warmth. Meg had adjusted pretty well to friends shifting to human form to give her a message or answer a question before shifting back to their preferred furred or feathered form, but it was different with him—maybe because their friendship was different from any other she had with humans or terra indigene.

Most nights, he slept with her in his Wolf form. They had their own apartments, but those places were connected by the summer room and a back upstairs hallway, and more and more it was becoming one den instead of two. But they weren’t mates in the same way Kowalski and Ruthie were mates. Then again, terra indigene Wolves only mated once a year when females came into season. Meg did the bleeding typical of human females but she hadn’t shown any physical interest in having a mate. Except…

She’d asked him to go skinny-dipping with her a couple of weeks ago. Both of them naked, in human form. She’d been nervous about being in the water with him, and she seemed scared after he’d kissed the scar along the right side of her jaw—a scar made by the cut that had saved the Wolfgard in Lakeside as well as many other Wolves throughout the Northeast Region and even beyond.

He’d kissed her before—on the forehead once or twice. But when he’d kissed that scar, he’d felt a flutter of change inside him, and in the days that followed he began to understand on some instinctive level that he wasn’t quite the same as the rest of the Lakeside Wolfgard. Not anymore.

Maybe it wasn’t just for Meg’s sake that, after the kiss, he’d invited her to play a Wolf game despite their both looking human. Then she wasn’t afraid anymore. And since then… Well, it wasn’t lost on him that, in summer weather like this, human males wore next to nothing in and around their own dens and no one thought anything of it.

“It’s hot upstairs,” Meg said, not raising her voice because she didn’t need to. His ears might look human, but he was still a Wolf and could hear her just fine. “I brought some food down here for breakfast.”

“I’ll take a quick shower and join you.”

He hurried inside and up the stairs to the bathroom in his apartment. Washing his hair and body didn’t take long, but he stood under the shower, enjoying the cool water falling over him as he thought about the complication that was Meg Corbyn.

He had brought her into the Courtyard, offering her the job of Human Liaison before discovering that she was a blood prophet, a cassandra sangue—a breed of human females who saw visions of the future when their skin was cut. She had escaped from the man who had owned her and used her, and Simon and the rest of the terra indigene in Lakeside had taken her in.

That sounded simple but it wasn’t. Nothing about Meg was simple. She was the pebble dropped in a pond that was the Lakeside Courtyard, and the ripples of her presence had changed so many things, including the terra indigene who had befriended her. Because of Meg, the Courtyard’s residents interacted with humans in ways that were unprecedented—or, at least, hadn’t been considered in centuries. Because of Meg, the terra indigene throughout Thaisia had tried to save the rest of the blood prophets who had been tossed out like unwanted puppies by the humans who had owned them. Because of Meg, the Lakeside Courtyard had a human pack that provided an additional learning experience for terra indigene who had a human-centric education and needed to practice those skills with humans who wouldn’t take advantage of mistakes.

Because of Meg, he had the uncomfortable feeling that a little bit of being human had become attached and inseparable from his Wolf form.

 

The Others #5: ETCHED IN BONE audio

My Thoughts:

In the world of The Others series, the names of the continents of their world sounds much like our own world, i.e., Afrikah, Brittania, Australis… but, what the heck is Felidae?! Sounds to me like a land full of cats…??

I am not quite sure why this book is titled Etched In Bone, though. A theme which is starting to plague this series lately. Titles that don’t really relate to the book! Whats that all about??! What in the world??…

I used to whinge about the narration of these books, and I still do, however this being book 5 in the series, I have already gotten used to it…. eventually. So that is probably why it is no longer as annoying as it used to be… probably…

 

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 5
Story itself = 5
Writing Style = 5
Ending = 5
World building = 5
Cover art = 5
Pace = 5
Plot = 5
Narration = 3.5

 

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 cherries

 

Books In The Others Series:
 

         

 

The Author
Anne Bishop

Anne Bishop lives in upstate New York where she enjoys gardening, music, and writing dark, romantic stories. She is the author of fourteen novels, including the award-winning Black Jewels Trilogy. Her most recent novel, Twilight’s Dawn, made the New York Times bestseller list. She is currently working on a new series, which is an urban dark fantasy with a bit of a twist.

Crawford Award (2000)

 


 

FTC Disclosure:
This book, in all its formats, were purchased with private funds.
No money received for this review.

 

14/03/2017 Posted by | 5 cherries, audiobook, book review, Cherry's reviews, ebook, kindle ebook, review, urban fantasy | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment