Sinomia:The World of Dreams – Middle Grade book review

Sinomia: The World of Dreams is a lovely middle age story about a young boy trying to cope with the idea that his parents are getting a divorce, and the mysterious dream world that he finds himself in while she dreams and the people within that help him come to terms with his reality. 

The story of Sinomia is one that is relatable to anyone who comes from a home with parents who have separated, and we all know those numbers are higher than many of them wish they were. I found myself able to relate to the issues of little Scott, though my own parents separated decades ago. And while I do not recall having any nightly adventures, children find interesting ways to cope.

The world of Sinomia is a colorful and creative fantasy world that the author clearly put quite a bit of work in to. The map at the start of the book is a finely detailed creation of world-building excellence, though still simple enough for the middle grade reader to comprehend. Alongside the world, the characters of Sinomia are colorful and creative people and creatures ranging from pirates to dragons.

Sinomia: The World of Dreams is an excellent adventure for any middle grade reader, particularly fitting for those who have come from homes that have divorced parents now. I would suggest picking up this book for your child it is an great read.

The Girl in the Corn – Book Review

The Girl in the Corn by Jason Offutt if a curious combination of fantasy and horror. The story leads two boys through their lives. One a boy who grows in to a man just trying to get by even though he knows there is some strange magic in the world and a monster wants to eat the world. And another boy who is quickly turned in to a demented murderer by the monster and goes through his life murdering in different ways after spending much of his life in a mental hospital.

This is a dark tale, bringing out some of the darker aspects of fae and other folklore. Showing their mischievous and murderous ways and not focusing on the popular, sweet, helpful magical aspects that many people seem to think of. The fae in this story are certainly no Tinker Bell fairies.

The story is exciting and ranges most of the two boys’ lives, showing you how they have interacted with the monster and each other from the time they are small children until their adulthood. The characters are realistic, and their reactions to what goes on around them makes sense. And quiet a bit seems to be going on around them.

Over all The Girl in the Corn is a great book, and I would strongly recommend it to fans of dark fantasy.

Uprising – Book Review

Uprising is the second book in a series by C.R. Dempsey. The book picks up where Bad Blood left off, bringing us right back in to the violent and dangerous life of the main character, with a slight more focus on some side characters than the first book had. Uprising is just as exciting as Bad Blood. There is plenty of adventure and the characters continue to be well thought out.

As with the first book in the series, the history surrounding the world during Uprising was well researched and the lore of the fictional parts of the story fit the setting properly.

Uprising, much like Bad Blood, should be picked up by fans of historical fiction stories!

The Ghosts of Thorwald Place – Book Review

The Ghosts of Thorwald Place is a hauntingly (yes, pun entirely intended) fantastic novel about a woman who is mysteriously killed and forced to haunt the building she was living in. However, she soon finds that she is not the only ghost in the area, and there may be much worse than the person who ended her life looming around Thorwald Place. What is that? Well, you will have to read the novel to find out.

The main character’s ghostly adventures display the ghosts housed in the expensive apartment building are far more than just the obvious. The twisted and dark pasts of the various tenants are put on display for the ghostly wanderer as she tries to figure out who killed her, and how she can prove that. Betrayal, anger and nearly every other dark emotion can be found in the various homes of Thorwald Place.

The Ghosts of Thorwald Place is told from two points of view. One being that of the deceased main character as she tried to figure out who killed her, along side other people reading her journal. The two storylines come together to show you how things really happened, summing up the story in a satisfying ending.

If you are a fan of mystery, horror, or just looking for a good ghost tale, make sure you pick up this novel!

The Lucky Diamond – Book Review

The Lucky Diamond by Valinora Troy is an exciting fantasy adventure that, while aimed at children, is certainly exciting enough for even an adult reader to follow along with. I had a great time following siblings trying to find their uncle in a creative fantasy world will many colorful creators and magical beings. 

The story of The Lucky Diamond is a creative adventure that I found myself getting in to from the beginning. Watching the children live their lives from a drastic beginning to a happy ending was exciting every step of the way. 

The characters are fanciful and well thought out. Even the magical creatures and people feel as if they are grounded in the world and make sense for the setting. Including a flying canoe I found myself particularly fond of.

The Lucky Diamond is a great read, and if you have a children of middle age reading, or you just like to read everything that crosses your path like I do, I would suggest picking this up. You are going to have a whole lot of fun!

Bad Blood – Book Review

If you are a regular reader of my reviews, then you know that historical fiction is one of my top three favorite genres to read. So I was super excited when I was able to get my hands on three C.R. Dempsey books. As of the writing of this I have read Bad Blood with Uprising currently being read. And I have to say, despite honestly having no idea who Dempsey was before picking up this book (as is the fact with most of the books I pick up on sites to review) I inhaled the entire novel in a day. Much to the chagrin of my cats and husband as I forgot to feed them. (Don’t worry they got treats later. The cats, not the husband, he can feed himself.)

Anyway, back to the book. Bad Blood is a historical fiction novel taking place in late 1500s Ireland. While the story and characters are fictional, as with many a historical fiction, the setting and the general timeline going on around the characters, who are doing their best to survive it, if rooted in history. The main character Eunan is a trouble young man who we meet at a young age as he does his best to deal with parents who hate him so much that he wishes to be away, but honor keeps him bound. Now I could guess why his parents hated him to some level. Despite this, I was not disappointed by how the story turned out.

Beyond the story, the characters are fitting for the century they take place in as are their struggles and bonds. 

I would strongly suggest Bad Blood to fans of historical fiction, you will likely inhale this story as quickly as I did.

Broken Volume 1 – After the Plague Book Review

Broken Volume 1 After the Plague by Imogen Keeper is a fascinating tale of disease and survival that is painfully relatable in today’s ‘new normal’ world. While people die around her the main character does her best to ignore what is going on around her, sadly when someone close to her passes away she has no other choice but to start to act. The main characters desire to try and hide from the pain going on around her is very realistic and relatable.

Expanding from the character mention above the others are all well written and interesting. They also act appropriately to the age of the character, which makes them even more enjoyable. It can often be difficult to write a proper child character, as its been a long time since the average writer was a five years old. However, the author has made each character believable.

Moving on to the story, as mentioned before, it is painfully relatable in our current COVID world. Though the disease in this story has a different origin and is twice as deadly, it is something all of us can relate to in our lives now, that at one point we could have only guessed at.

One thing to note, if you are easily offended, the characters in this book talk like actual people. There are curses used and a sex scene. These are not excessive and fit to the style and setting of the story.

Final thoughts on the book? You should pick it up, its a fantastic book!

I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

The Man with the Golden Mind – Book Review

The Man with the Golden Mind is another fantastic novel Detective Maier series by Tom Vater, who is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. Maier is on another case, dragged in by a woman who comes seeking his help. Despite still recovering from the issues brought on by his previous case, he ends up taking in. In the process he runs in to old friends, and family he never expected to ever see.

Like the previous Maier book, The Man with the Golden Mind is a thrilling adventure taking place in Asia. This second book, at least in my not so humble opinion, is better than the first. Maier feels more fleshed out, and he was already a great character and the traumatic things he goes through make you feel even more for the protagonist of this series.

As with all of his work, Vater paints us the rough uncomfortable aspects of the lands his characters visit and the beauty of the areas, giving us a colorful and exciting view of the world he writes so passionately about.

Another fantastic Vater book, that any fan of fiction should pick up and add to their collection.

Surrogate Colony – Book Review

Surrogate Colony by Boshra Rasti is a dystopian novel following a young woman and her love interest as they try to come to terms with the fact that they seem to be very strange in a world full of people who are doing what is expected of them, and where everyone future is laid down for them by a supercomputer and its algorithms.

The characters are interesting. As the main characters are young adults, they have a number of emotional issues that should be addressed by the cocktail of various medication that the government expects them to take regularly. Sadly, the medications do not seem to work perfectly for our main character, leaving her in an uncomfortable position.

The story itself was good. However, there were a few plot gaps that had me wondering. The main characters seemed to jump to some conclusions before things were explained. And the villain, while yes, a villain, seems to have no particular reason to do what is happening. However, despite these issues, Surrogate Colony is a dark and entertaining dystopian story that I found myself inhaling rather quickly. I honestly hope a sequel is written as the story ended on a note one would be perfect for as well as hoping some more questions are answered.

Enemy – Book Review

I have always enjoyed a good dystopian book. There is something relatable about reading how people have systematically voted their own rights away or had them ripped from them. How every horrible aspect of history that we believe we have learned from shown to be nothing. I am now adding Enemy to my collection of dystopian novels that I will reread when I feel as though I need to escape what I tell myself is a stressful reality. Someone certainly has it worse.

Enemy follower several characters as they attempt to plot and kill their way to the top, or to assume freedom. They kill, they steal, they like and they sneak. Both the clear bad guys and the assumed good guys. People will do what they need to survive in the horrible world that they now live in. 

Enemy jumped between various characters, telling you their stories as it goes. The characters are realistic. They fit well in the dystopian world, and are so well written that you want to learn about them, even the ones who appear the villains. Each one has their reasons for doing what they do, selfish, or assumed greater good.

The story itself is a classic dystopian post ‘end of war’ setting that while done multiple times by other novels is handled well, my the author and does not feel like a tired cliche but a well formed and built dystopian world.

Pick up this novel, you will not regret it.

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