Review of Crossing In Time by DL Orton – One to go Time Travelling With. @The_WriteReads #DLOrton #Review #Sci-Fi #dystopia

Crossing In Time
By DL Orton
Rated: 3.5 stars

Thank you to Dave at The Write Reads for inviting me on this blog tour to review the interesting, sci-fi book Crossing In Time. I thank him and the author – DL Orton for an audiobook code, so I could listen to it.

About The Author

DL ORTON, THE BESTSELLING AUTHOR of the BETWEEN TWO EVILS series, lives in the foothills of the Rockies where she and her husband are raising three boys, a golden retriever, two Siberian cats, and an extremely long-lived Triops.♂‍

In her spare time, she’s building a time machine so that someone can go back and do the laundry.

Website: http://www.DLOrton.com.

Amazon link: Amazon Buy Link

Goodreads link: Goodreads reviews link

Crossing in Time cover.png

Blurb

The past isn’t over, it’s an opening. The future isn’t hidden, it’s a trap.
If she ever wants to see him again, she’ll have to take the risk.

Fall into this “Funny, Romantic & Harrowing” (Publishers Weekly Starred Review) dystopian love story and prepare to encounter a finicky time machine, a mysterious seashell, and a very clever dog (some sex, some swearing, some violence, but no vampires and absolutely NO ditzes!)

When offered a one-way trip to the past, Isabel sacrifices everything for a chance to change the rapidly deteriorating present–and see her murdered lover one last time. When she arrives twenty years in the past, buck naked and mortally wounded, she has 24 hours to convince a stunned but enraptured nineteen-year-old to change their future. Definitely easier said than done, as success means losing him to a brainy, smart-mouthed bombshell (her younger self), and that’s a heart breaker, save the world or not.

This offbeat tale is about falling madly in love when one is too cynical for such things, letting go of pessimism when it’s the last life jacket on a sinking ship, and racing against the clock when one doesn’t have the proper footwear. It’s a coming-of-age story for old fogeys, a how-to-make-love guide for diehard celibates, and a laugh-out-loud tragedy with a hopeful twist.

Review

Let the cover lead you into another world. A dystopian world. There are a few twists and turns here and there within this dystopian tale of love. It is fast-paced as it takes readers through a dystopian wasteland as Isabelle tries to survive. She is going through a messy divorce and meets up with an old flame, some time before the world becomes an even darker place to be.
There are some intriguing plotlines, one of the strongest ones being about what happens when Diego gets abducted by the government in a strange time travelling sphere. I like the sounds on the finicky time machine. It is a fascinating concept.
The love aren’t always quite believable, but there are some excellent, strong topics within the relationship and being in danger sense, within this book as well as some strong characters.
I thought it lacked in humour a bit, but the tragic side was definitely well told and is emotional and well-handled. The topics huge and do take for an empathetic reader to perhaps grasp the world, without being argumentative and instead empathetic, to be able to enjoy this story. I will say again, the themes are well-handled.

There is adventure, trepidation and I would go as far as saying, danger, within a hope that doomsday won’t actually happen.

The book sets itself well for another to perhaps follow on from the series.

Is it worth a try? Well, yes it is. There are some ups and downs in the book, but in saying that, it does make for an intriguing story and it does hold attention and the maturity within the story is good, in the way the world is created.

#Review of The Boy Who Dreamed of Dragons @andyjshepherd @PiccadillyPress #TheBoyWhoDreamedOfDragons #childrensbook #middlegrade #kidslit #parents #edutwitter

The Boy Who Dreamed of Dragons
By Andy Shepherd
Illustrated by Sara Ogilvie
Rated5 stars *****

Thank you to my surpise post of The Boy Who Dreamed of Dragons, sent to me by Andy Shepherd, spanning from a quick chat some time ago. So, today, I am delighted to present my review on this great story that is just 263 pages and also has some terrific illustrations throughout, within its vibrant cover. It also, when the book is fully closed, has a special look as the subtle lines going down the pages look rather smart.The Boy Who Dreamed of Dragons cover

Blurb

We dream of dragons. Soaring, roaring, fire-flickering dragons. While we’re tucked up in bed, they light up in our sleep. Sparking, glittering, aglow.

But dreams are only the beginning of an even greater story.

Because the truth is, our dragons don’t just visit us in our dreams…

Review

At some point, lots of children (including me when I was a child) have dreamt about flying on a dragon’s back, swooping and soaring through the sky.

Dragon races, friendships, sock puppets, a wormhole in a fridge, a jungle family, humour, warmth, a super hero squad, illustrations, this book has it all in only 263 pages that is  amazingly adventurous, fast-paced and sparky.
This book captures imaginations perfectly. Every page has something to make you smile.

Did you know dragons grow on trees? No? Enter this enchanting tale to find out about them and meet the beautifully coloured dragons called Flicker and Sunny. There’s a race with a difference – it’s a dragon race. It’s also used as a clever way of introducing the characters, such as Thomas and his Lolli, who have the most terrific fun with their games. There’s also great friendships within the characters.

Not everyone knows about dragons, but endearing and very fun grandad does. Grandad hasn’t been too well and had a hospital stay, but back on his feet, he’s as positive as ever with his grandchildren helping out with his vegetable patch and just having fun. I like the positivity around this part of the story.

This book is funny, heartwarming and is just perfect for sparking the imaginations of children and for reading for pleasure. It is also perfect for nature-lovers too, or just lovers of humour. On a deeper level, there is plenty about the world around you to have fun with. There’s also themes of having to move on as Thomas’s mum hears of a new job, meaning the family have to move. The emotion of having to leave what was known and loved behind is captured so naturally as it plays out and Flicker, the dragon also leaves. It’s another big theme for children, but handled so well and not completely negatively, which is thoughtful of Andy.

At school, secrets are inadvertently blurted out by Thomas himself to the new girl – Aura who proudly proclaims herself to be a dragon expert, which really throws Thomas into confusion as his emotions really take over and a chain of further events happen.

This book is great for schools, libraries and within homes. Children can have so much fun with it and within schools, there are subjects within the themes that can be discussed or used creatively within activities, as well as generally being good for reading for pleasure.

Review of Sons of Secrets By N.J. Simmonds #fantasy #blogtour #Review #NewBook

Sons of Secrets
By
Rated: 4 stars ****

After an early morning conversation with the author, I was invited to read Son’s of Secrets and then I was subsequently invited onto her blog tour. It was a very fruitful and interesting conversation that led me decide to lend my support. Thankfully the book actually turns out to be a pretty good and entertaining fantasy book. I thank the author for giving me this opportunity and for also sending me an e-book version of her book to review from. This is an author that is worthwhile giving a chance.

SoS

About the Author

Sons of Secrets Nat_PR_0253I, Natali, write dark fantasy books full of magic, drama, suspense, a bit of history and lots of kissing.

Being an author is all I’ve ever wanted to be. At the age of 5 I used to sit at the dining table while my dad drew me pictures and I’d write stories to go with them. Ever since, my tales have been filled with fantastical worlds and strong girls going on big adventures.

Originally from North London with Spanish parentage, I’ve lived all over the world including Australia, Spain and the Netherlands. That’s probably why my characters never keep still – and why London features so heavily in my work.

When I’m not writing, I’m a public speaker and guest lecturer, as well as run my own brand consultancy business. I’ve written articles for various publications and in 2015 I co-founded online magazine The Glass House Girls.

I live with my family in The Netherlands, where I spend my time apologizing that I still can’t speak Dutch or ride a bicycle very well – although my heart will always remain in sunny Spain, and my soul forever in those wondrous, grimy, magical streets of London. 

Son of Secrets cover.jpg

Blurb

In A  fight against destiny – who will win?

Ella has been waiting for Zac for three years. She’s convinced he’ll return for her, but fate has other plans. When Josh is thrown back into her life, Ella has a choice: step back on to her rightful path, or wait for the one who dared her to rebel.

But Ella’s not the only one missing Zac. Luci has been searching for her blue-eyed boy over two millennia and will stop at nothing to get him back. Even if that means hunting down the only girl he ever loved.

From Tuscany 5BC to 17th century witch hunts, Ella, Zac, Luci and Sebastian’s lives have been forever intertwined. The time has finally come to complete the circle.

Review

The book is so beautifully written and with some humour, lovely scenery. There are some dark bits, but mostly it is an entertaining read as it weaves the real world and fantastical characters together to create The Indigo Chronicles World.

The author has painted a good picture of realism and fantasy. There’s romance, adventure, action, great locations like Highgate and Gibraltar, there are pure angels, dark angels, trepidation, intriguing lives as well as deaths and emotion, magic powers; and all isn’t always what it first seems, which all makes a pleasurable and fun read that spans across millenia.

Meet Ella and Zac and Josh in a place where the Mediteranean and Atlantic Ocean meet. Pizza and wine, it’s a wonderful combination and yet Ella just doesn’t know quite what she is doing with Josh.

Zac is no ordinary person, readers will discover. Not anymore as he finds himself in Highgate Cemetery.  His mission? To find and be with Ella with use of his powers. Powers enough to make you shudder. It’s a bit creepy when you’re a woman reading about a guy who lived 2000 years ago who can sense every part of you. In saying that, it’s fantastic for this fantasy book as I found myself wanting to find out more as this book gets more and more interesting and very quickly so. He meets up with Ylva as they reminisce about a party and discuss Ella.

Fantasy is a genre I can take it or leave it, but this book is good in the way the real world and fantasy elements all collide. It’s grounded in a good way. It has good, strong themes and likeable characters. There’s a bit of a will they, won’t they going on with Josh and Ella and revelations of Ella’s step-brother and the effect he has on how he hurt Ella. Josh is a film star and a bit of a flirt.

Zac is fun as he discovers tattoos because apparently his appearance hasn’t changed in 2000 years and he has now decided to alter it a bit. It’s intersting how Zac is perceived and there’s a wonderful written paragraph that is essentially the butterfly effect. He’s full of dark, creepy intrigue.

There are secrets as to how the characters are connected and who they really are, that are revealed as Arabella, the narrator of this story tells as she’s heard of demons and of the shadows before and she’s on the run over the city walls and it is intriguing to see what she is up to as she comes across Zadkiel. Later on, back home, Arabella, back home is then left by her mother, with Sabinous, a soldier, and knew she needed to follow her destiny…

The feminism notes that are there can be a bit overly strong at times, as much as the passion does come across.

The author’s note is an interesting one about the author’s one experiences and says about the book being a tribute to those who have been hunted and hurt and struggles. This does come through in the book, but written in a creative way.

SON OF SECRETS blog (1)

 

The Cauldron of Life by Caroline Logan @bearpuffbooks @cranachanbooks #Lovebookstours @lovebooksgroup #CoverReveal #BlogTour

The Cauldron of Life
by Caroline Logan

Today is an exciting Cover Reveal Day for Scottish author Caroline Logan’s young adult book – The Cauldron of Life, published by Cranachan Books.
In my opinion it looks magical and full of mystique, from the font to the wolf. It’s certanly eye-catching. Take a further look to see the cover for this new book in full and also for further details about the blurb, the publishing date and about Caroline Logan.
Thank you for the invite to be part of the blog tour.

The Cauldron of Life Ebook Cover (1)

Blurb

Join the journey; discover your destiny.

Harris has been captured by the Faerie Queen and Ailsa must journey once again into the heart of Eilanmòr to rescue him.

But Ailsa is struggling with her newfound magic and the revelations about her real identity. Is the Faerie Queen Ailsa’s mother? Is everything she believed about her past a lie?

Meanwhile, a war is brewing between Heaven and Hell, with the world as the battleground. The lines between good and evil are blurring, and Ailsa must decide where she stands.

Publication date: 1st October 2020

978-1-911279-52-5 The Cauldron of Life Paperback
978-1-911279-53-2 The Cauldron of Life ebook

About the Author

The Cauldron of Life author picCaroline is a high school biology teacher who lives in the Cairngorms National Park in Scotland, with her fiancé. Before moving there, she lived and worked in Spain, Tenerife, Sri Lanka and other places in Scotland. She graduated from The University of Glasgow with a bachelor’s degree in Marine and Freshwater Biology. In her spare time, she tries to ski and paddleboard, though she is happiest with a good book and a cup of tea.

Caroline Logan is a writer of Young Adult Fantasy. Her debut novel, The Stone of Destiny, is the first in The Four Treasures series, and the much-anticipated, The Cauldron of Life, will be the second.

Instagram: @bearpuffbooks

Twitter:     @bearpuffbooks

 

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#Review of The Coronation by Justin Newland – 4 star historical and fantasy #JustinNewland @matadorbooks @LoveBooksGroup #BlogTour #fantasy #history

The Coronation
by Justin Newland
Rated: 4 Stars ****

With thanks to Kelly at LoveBooksGroup for inviting me on the blog tour for The Coronation by Justin Newland. After reading The Old Dragon’s Head and reviewing it last year, I thought I would give this one a try.


About the Author

The Coronation Justin Newland Author Photo 071018 (1).jpgAfter a long career in I.T., Justin’s love of literature finally seduced him and, in 2006, he found his way to the creative keyboard to write his first novel.

Justin writes secret histories in which historical events and people are guided and motivated by numinous and supernatural forces.

His debut novel, The Genes of Isis, is a tale of love, destruction, and ephemeral power set under the skies of Ancient Egypt, and which tells the secret history of the human race, Homo Sapiens Sapiens.

His second is The Old Dragon’s Head, a historical fantasy and supernatural thriller set during the Ming Dynasty and played out in the shadows the Great Wall of China. It explores the secret history of the influences that shaped the beginnings of our times.  

He is currently working on a novel set in East Prussia during the Enlightenment in the 18th Century which reveals the secret history of perhaps the single most important event of the modern world – The Industrial Revolution.

Justin does books signings and gives author talks in libraries in South West England. He has appeared at many Literary Festivals, including Bristol, Weston-super-mare and Exeter. He regularly gives interviews on BBC local radio and local FM radio stations.

The Coronation Front Cover (1)

Blurb

It is 1761. Prussia is at war with Russia and Austria. As the Russian army occupies East Prussia, King Frederick the Great and his men fight hard to win back their homeland.

In Ludwigshain, a Junker estate in East Prussia, Countess Marion von Adler celebrates an exceptional harvest. But this is soon requisitioned by Russian troops. When Marion tries to stop them, a Russian Captain strikes her. His Lieutenant, Ian Fermor, defends Marion’s honour, but is stabbed for his insubordination. Abandoned by the Russians, Fermor becomes a divisive figure on the estate.

Close to death, Fermor dreams of the Adler, a numinous eagle entity, whose territory extends across the lands of Northern Europe and which is mysteriously connected to the Enlightenment. What happens next will change the course of human history…

 

Review

The book is set in 1761 and takes readers back to a time long since past of Prussia and their king and countess and invasions from Russia. The book mixes history with fantasy pretty well to tell a mysterious tale of a numinous eagle and the Great Enlightenment. It is an interesting read that takes readers into times long since gone. 

The mix with earthly things and places and fantasy is good with very good characterisation. This seems to be what Justin Newland specialises in and does it rather well, having read both The Old Dragon’s Head and now, The Coronation.

The chapters are nice and short as the world between what was real and what is fantasy is created.

As the war goes on, there is also Marion Grafin- Von Adler’s life that is written about as her life goes on in parallel, which is where the fantasy and a spiritual journey is. It makes for pretty good reading. There are also some subplots that keeps the story moving along and to keep readers engaged. There are also good, references to Glasgow in Scotland and people such as James Watt, who were important during the Enlightenment period of time and indeed, their achievements are still with us today in some form or another. So, this, although is a fantasy, does have a grounding in reality too.

If fantasy and/or history is your thing, then give The Coronation a read. It would certainly appeal to readers of those genres.

The Coronation blog tour

 

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Review of The Nexus Mirror @nemichaelbooks #NexusMirror #Fantasy #Sci-Fi #Review #YA #NewBook

The Nexus Mirror
By N.E. Michael
Rated: 3.5 stars

It is with thanks to the author – Noah Michael for getting in touch with me via my blog asking if I could review his fantasy/sci-fi book. So today, I am pleased to be now publishing my review of this book that will take you through a world and time of many creatures and also one that highlights some contemporary issues too, even though this is set far in the distant future.

About the Author

Noah Michael, is the author of the Chronicles of the Enlai series. He has two undergraduate degrees in bio-medical engineering and the medical sciences, and is currently a student in medical school. He is all about following dreams, and so despite his busy schedule, he never gave up my hobbies which include writing, music, and traveling. Aside from his current series, he has two other worlds in his head just waiting to be built, and can’t wait to share them with you! Please don’t hesitate to reach out and share your dreams with me as well, and I hope you enjoy reading mine!

Social media links:

Twitter handle: @nemichaelbooks

Nexus Mirror cover

Blurb


Thirteen tribes. Two hundred years of war. One girl, with the key to ending it all.

Ever since his father’s mysterious murder, Raiden has been having visions of beings with extraordinary powers which he sketched into comics. The man responsible for the murder, billionaire Jimmy Roko, controls the world from his lofty, impenetrable Silver Tower. Compared to Roko’s vast army of robotic creatures and soldiers, Raiden is helpless. At least he was, until the magical heroes from his comics came knocking at his doorstep…

Forced away from everything he’d ever known, Raiden is thrown into a war filled with mystical beasts and terrible demons, super-powered heroes and futuristic battle-drones, ancient portals and daring new worlds. The fate of the universe rests in Raiden’s hands as he fights against Jimmy Roko and the Chief of Shadows to protect a young girl named Sarah, the last surviving Surger, who possesses the key to the ultimate weapon.

Review

There are topical subjects, fights, a student to protect and war wounds amongst this book of humans and other creatures, some whom are almost human.

Enter a world some time in the future. Not everyone is human!
There are a whole array of other creatures. Raidens, being one type. Raiden Williams, who is a teacher and one with a bit of an attitude at times, one that some guys have with their smirking. It’s a pity as can’t immediately decide whether I like him or not.
Sarah is one of his brightest pupils. Alia and Bella are orphans trying to get by, which makes for an interesting story with some of the social aspects surrounding that.

The book covers bullying, the devastating consequences and the impact. The tone of Alia and those who are the bullies is just right as is the raw emotion. This is a book that would perhaps inspire young adult readers to think about actions having consequences. It’s good and thoughtful.

Alia is a detective, seeking answers as to what happened to Hunter, whether it was murder or suicide.

Hospitals is also a theme within this book as Bella suffers a stroke. The hospital is well described as being very futuristic.

Meet the Enlai. A tribe of people who are almost human and who learn to try to master their emotions and are Readers. There are topical elements to them too as they are asked about changing their DNA to extend their lives and the consequences to this.

What is real and what is in Alia’s subconscious is something that readers have to work out, as does this brave character.

Marcus is the most powerful Reader, which makes for interesting characterisation.

There is enough in the book to know just where you are in the time frames and as different magical and fantastical characters are met, such as shifters, zombies and super-powered pirates. There is a war to be fought and what was great was that the effects of war is also written about. Even so far into the future, war is not straight forward and there are still consequences that are felt.

There is an unexpected ending, which is touching and also in a sentence, the story is left open for the next book – The Legend of Solis.

There is certainly enough going on in this fantasy world that the N.E. Michael has created for the YA fantasy/sci-fi readers to be engaged in. The book does get off to an interesting start and good pace, then seems to slow down somewhat, before really getting into it and seems to jump a bit and could be a bit tighter in places. It is however worth sticking with because when you do that, you really get stuck into this futuristic world and all that lives there and the pace does pick up, so do give it a really good chance. You may find yourself enjoying it, like I did and wanting to find out how it ends. After all, the premise is good and for a new writer, fans of fantasy will do well in trying Noah’s books out.

I thank the author N.E. Michael for contacting me on my blog and for sending me his book. It’s always such a pleasure and honour to be asked to review.