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review 2020-06-29 14:53
Class war and magic
Gilded Cage - Vic James

Gilded Cage is a bit like Animal Farm with magic. It's told from the perspective of seven characters, and set in an alternate Britain where the ruling class are called Equals and have magical powers, while the non-magical populous must submit to a decade of slavery.

 

It's the first book in a series and while most of the threads are neatly concluded by the end a couple remain. The characters are varied, although most represent a type rather than a fully realised individual, however that seems to work in the depths of this them versus us narrative.

 

I enjoyed it and will probably pick up other books in the series at some point. Vic James is particularly talented when it comes to describing settings, all of which feel very real in spite of their strangeness.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2020-06-19 04:44
Book Review : Red queen Victoria Aveyard
Red Queen - Victoria Aveyard

May 27-June 18

Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with common, Red blood serve the Silver-blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. There, before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.



To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess, and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard—a growing Red rebellion—even as her heart tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays the only certainty is betrayal.



This sweeping story of palace intrigue, class hierarchy, and deception will keep readers hurtling along, desperate to find out Mare’s fate. Her honesty and determination, quick wit, and no-holds-barred attitude will surely make readers fall in love with her.


Review : This book was so good this is set in a dystopian world where you're blood defines you're worth Red is below the silvers . Mare is close to turning 18 and her best friend kilorne is going to have have to go into the war she's trying to find a way to stop it from happening so she has her sister help her go into silver world . A terrorist group called the Scarlet Guard are trying to take over and when leaving the Silver world gisa pickpockets a silver and she gets her hand smashed . When out again Mare pickpockets someone name Cal and he gets her a job at a silver palace but then something happens Mare finds out she has powers lightning powers .Mare finds out Cal is the prince and to hide her the queen fakes her as some lost princess and she is to be engaged to Cal brother Maven who is find to be an interesting character his father doesn't think Maven is not a good as Cal who is a soldier. Mare is able to visit her family with the help of Cal who hears one of her brothers is dead . Mare starts getting trained by Julian who is the brother of the former queen . Mare joins the Scarlet Guard and we find out Maven is also in the guard and they help Farley with giving her names . But at a party Maven and Mare are set to get certain people killed an explosion happens the guard is taken in . Mare has Julian help her get them released. They are traveling away from the Silver castle and Julian gave mare a note there were others like Mare some dead some still alive and she gives the names to Farley . With their plan executed Mare tries to convince Cal but it doesn't work and Cal brings Mare and Maven in but then we learn the queen and Maven have been working together and they kill the king and now Maven is the king because the put the blame on Cal . They are to be executed and put in to fight but then the Scarlet Guard comes to save them and we learn Mare brother is still alive.

Quotes
“The gods rule us still. They have come down from the stars. And they are no longer kind.”


“I will never make the mistake of loving you ever again."
"So you choose him?"
That's all this ever was. Jealousy. Rivalry. All so shadow could defeat the flame.”

“I'll make the other scream for you, Mare, every last one. Not just your parents. Not just your siblings. But every single one like you. I'm going to find them, and they will die with you in their thoughts, knowing this is the fate you have brought them. I am the king and you could've been my Red Queen. Now you are nothing.”


The truth is what I make it. I could set this world on fire and call it rain.”

 

 

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review 2020-06-07 13:28
The Woman Who Killed Donald Trump
The Woman Who Killed Donald Trump - Sam Bower

by Sam Bower

 

There's so much wrong with the idea of writing this, but it was going for free and morbid curiosity made me look.

 

It's a short story involving government agencies who people already believe perform assassinations for 'the good of the country' and is surprisingly well written. If the names were fictional, it would actually be a very good political intrigue story. The twist at the end was excellent.

 

As real names were used, it does fit public perceptions of the characters. Who can tell how accurate those might or might not be? I'm sure that writing it served as catharsis for the author, though I think it might have been wiser to at least change the names to fictional ones. Anyone who reads it would recognize who it's meant to be anyway.

 

I'm going to ignore that aspect and give it a high rating for good writing. If the secret service hauls this person away, well, that's nothing to do with me. All I did was read it and enjoy it, perhaps a little too much.

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review 2020-06-02 08:59
Glad I read the lot!
What Tomorrow May Bring - Deborah Rix,Shelbi Wescott,Joseph A. Turkot,David J. Normoyle,Cary Caffrey,Samantha Durante,Megan Thomason,Jenni Merritt,David Estes,Susan Kaye Quinn,Tony Bertauski

So, I've been reading this book for over 3 years... but that's because it contains 10 novels within its covers. Each of the stories are laid out below with their individual ratings and links to their reviews.

Overall, however I felt the book contains some very good books, and some not so good books, but the collection left me feeling mostly glad to have read the whole lot.

My favourite of the collection would definitely have to be The Narrowing Path closely followed by Stitch. This appears to no longer be available to buy from Amazon so if you're interested in any of these books you'll likely need to purchase them separately.

Open Minds by Susan Kaye Quinn ★★★★ https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

The Moon Dwellers, by David Estes ★★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Prison Nation, by Jenni Merritt★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Daynight, by Megan Thomason★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Stitch, by Samantha Durante ★★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

The Annihilation of Foreverland, by Tony Bertauski ★★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

The Girls from Alcyone, by Cary Caffrey ★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

The Narrowing Path, by David Normoyle ★★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

The Rain, by Joseph Turkot ★★★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Virulent: The Release, by Shelbi Wescott ★★
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

**Note: I received an electronic copy of this book in return for an honest review**

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review 2020-06-01 14:19
The Handmaids Tale
The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood

by Margaret Atwood

 

My first impression of this book was that it reminded me of Anne Frank's diary, writing in journal form about an oppressive situation in which the person writing must survive. Considering it was first released in 1985, the present tense writing that continued caught me off guard. It was unusual before the self-pub explosion in 2010.

 

The tale shows a future society where the freedoms we take for granted have been removed and women in particular are assigned roles and expected to conform to them, including providing babies for couples in more privileged positions but unable to produce their own. Citizens spy on each other and dissention makes people disappear.

 

We are never given the main character's real name because women are referred to by their captain's name; Offred, Ofwarren, etc. She has flashbacks to how life was 'before' that identify this as a society that took over what we would recognise as modern Western life. She misses a lover whose fate she does not know and a child they had together who was taken from her. There is occasional mention of a war, but details are slow to be revealed.

 

I found the story continually depressing. Obviously the whole point is that no one would want to live in such an oppressive world and it was interesting to see how some women managed to adapt, though many didn't. The change is still first generation and those in charge insist the next generation will find the new society perfectly natural, as they've never known anything else.

 

I saw some parallels with American black slavery in that children were taken away from parents with no sympathy for the mother's sense of loss. Also in that deviating from what was considered accepted behaviour resulted in physical punishment or even death.

 

What I found most interesting is that the men weren't enjoying the restrictions on themselves either. Human nature was never meant to be regimented.

 

I found the ending... tedious. An attempt by the author to be clever that fell flat and some essential unanswered questions. I'm glad I've read this now, but even more glad that I don't have to read it again.

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