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review 2017-07-17 01:12
Ashes of the Phoenix (Phoenix Rising #1) by Jess Haines
Ashes of the Phoenix - Jess Haines
Lyra runs a magical book store - despite having no magic herself. Still, she thought she was well protected against most of the tricks wizards can pull
 
Until a man stole one her more valuable books
 
And turned her into a bird. Neither of those are things she’s willing to let go
 
 
This book caught my attention because I haven’t seen a lot of phoenixes in the genre. And a book where the main character spent it entirely as a bird is definitely incredibly different and a completely novel concept. Things like this interest me as it points to an author thinking so far outside of the tropes we’re used to having
 
It’s also really well done - I can see this as the struggles a human would have when forced into such an alien body they don’t know how to pilot.
 
The world setting also is highly promising. Not just phoenixes and demons but a definite range of magic, magical creatures and big differences and implications with which with a clear rich and involved magical world.
 
The concept of the phoenix is also really original and curious - even if it’s only fully realised at the end of the book which is epic and is the main thing about this book that really drew me to wanting to see where this is going. There is a foundation for an absolutely awesome series here - so much can be developed in so many amazing ways
 
I did have an issue though - beyond the complete erasure of POC and LGBTQ people and any other minorities.
 
Unfortunately I kind of feel like a deadline was looming and the author had to get this book to the publisher like yesterday because it feels vaguely unfinished.  I know less is more (except when talking about bacon, of course) but in this case I could have used some more expansion
 
As I said, this book is here to introduce a new world, a new concept and a whole load of new characters. Which is great - and it does a good job of beginning to introduce these people, these concepts and this world (and I’m intrigued) but not enough for me to get fully invested in them (especially the characters). Everything, the world building, the creatures, the monsters, the magic, and the characters (definitely the characters) could use a bit more to get me invested in them

 

 

 

 

Read More

 

 

Source: www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2017/06/ashes-of-phoenix-phoenix-rising-1-by.html
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review 2017-07-08 22:43
Ashes of the Elements by Alys Clare
Ashes of the Elements (Hawkenlye Mystery) - Alys Clare

Series: Hawkenlye #2

 

I was disappointed in this installment. The solution to the mystery involved a lot of new age stuff with twins and mind readers and I just wasn’t impressed. It also wasn’t entirely clear but a point of the plot hinged on missing “undergarments” which, it being 1191, sounds like the author might have been thinking with a modern mindset although perhaps I’m wrong. I’m not giving up on the series though and plan to read the next one.

 

I read this for the booklikes-opoly square Main Street 11 (from the July 4th free move) “Read a book…that was written by an author who was born before 1955". Alys Clare (Elizabeth Harris) was born in 1944. At 265 pages, that’s $6 for my bank, bringing my new total to $190.

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review 2017-06-02 19:58
Ashes to Asheville
Ashes to Asheville - Sarah Dooley

I absolutely loved this novel. It was fun, entertaining, captivating and it was delightful. It was a journey that had me turning the pages so fast, it was over before I knew it.

 

It was fun in the way that sixteen-year-old Zany and twelve-year-old Fella took off with Mama Lacy ashes on a mission to fulfill her last wishes by scattering her remains where she wanted to be. Entertaining because this mission involved many people, where they meet a police officer, where Zany drives a semi-truck, where they go shopping filling up a cart to the top and it didn’t cost them anything, where the conversations are endless and I learned a great deal about these young girls and their lives. It was captivating as I couldn’t put this novel down as the opening pages started with Zany snatching Mama Lacy off the mantel and the girls jumping into Mrs. Madison’s car. Haberdashery is making noise out in the yard and they can’t take him back inside for fear that they will wake up Mrs. Madison and blow their cover, so inside the car he goes, they now have a dog along on their trip. There is talk of a Mama Shannon amongst the girls, this woman I don’t know anything about but as the conversation continues I realize that she is Zany’s mother and that she loved Mama Lacy. Mama Lacy was Fella’s mother and she loved Mama Shannon. The four of them used to live under the same roof but that was before cancer took Mama Lacy away and that was before Mrs. Madison took Fella away from her remaining family. I love listening to the girls and their spunky conversation in the car. Fella is hoping that Zany had a plan when she picked today to start off on this trip and she does have a plan, to get the ashes to Asheville but it all the incidentals along the way that cause the glitches for the girls. It was delightful as it was an enjoyable read: it was exciting, it was comical at times and a very interesting read. What a fantastic novel, a good feel book for me. I highly recommend this novel.

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text 2017-05-31 01:05
Undecided on Paradise Pier 30
World Without End - Ken Follett
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - Stieg Larsson
The A.B.C. Murders (Hercule Poirot, #13) - Agatha Christie
Ashes of the Elements - Alys Clare

Help!

 

As part of my weekend rolls, I landed on Paradise Pier 30. At first I thought the easiest thing would be to read a book that has more than 555 pages, but the one that I was thinking of (that I have a paper copy of) is a thousand page brick to lug around: World Without End by Ken Follett. The others are all ebooks, and although I'm pretty sure they'd all qualify, I'm not sure I want to use them for that square.

 

So I tried paging through books tagged as "suspense" on GR to see if anything was on my to-read shelf and it looks like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson is an option since it's currently available at my library. Most of the other options that were on my shelves I've already read.

 

Most mystery books should probably have a twist but it's a little hard to tell in advance. If it's not too much Poirot in a row, I could try The A.B.C. Murders or I could try another mystery like Ashes of the Elements by Alys Clare.

 

So, would anyone care to weigh in? Should I go for the $10 prize or stick to something a little less weighty?

 

Edit: My other long but less weighty choices:

The Lamp of the Wicked - Phil Rickman  Cibola Burn - James S.A. Corey  Dragonfly Falling - Adrian Tchaikovsky 

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review 2017-05-09 18:11
The Ashes (The Rebecca Underhill Trilogy Book 2) by Vincent Zandri
The Ashes (The Rebecca Underhill Trilogy) (Volume 2) - Vincent Zandri

This is the 2nd book in the Rebecca Underhill trilogy. I did not read the 1st book but will be soon. Even though I had not read the 1st book I had no real problems following this this book as it can be read as a stand alone. Mr Zandri does give you enough of a back story to let you easily follow along. I think if you had read the 1st book the amount of backstory would just give you enough of a refresher but not to much to bore you.

I love horror so this book was right up my alley. There were some blood and gore but not very much so it would be great for someone not into that as well. This is more of a creepy physiological book. It is a real page turner. It kept me on the edge of my seat and in a few places had me looking over my own shoulder. You don't want to read this book in the dark and some may not want to read it while alone either.

This book takes place 8 years after Rebecca's harrowing ordeal in a wooded cabin. Rebecca narrowly escaped a deranged killer then, but now has bigger problems as "The Skinner" is after her.

Rebecca's original boogeyman Joseph William Whalen who is dead, had a cell mate while in prison. Lawrence Frederick Hanover AKA The Skinner. The skinner has escaped prison and is now after Rebecca, but instead of going straight for her he has decided to get her where it really hurts, Her Kids.

Rebecca may be weak in some aspects but when it comes to the dark she is strong. She must save her kids as well as herself.
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