Book Review: The Border Keeper

Hello Everyone,

Title: The Border Keeper

Author: Kerstin Hall

Series: Book 1

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Tor dot com

Page Count: 300

Goodreads Summary:

She lived where the railway tracks met the saltpan, on the Ahri side of the shadowline. In the old days, when people still talked about her, she was known as the end-of-the-line woman.

Vasethe, a man with a troubled past, comes to seek a favor from a woman who is not what she seems, and must enter the nine hundred and ninety-nine realms of Mkalis, the world of spirits, where gods and demons wage endless war.

The Border Keeper spins wonders both epic—the Byzantine bureaucracy of hundreds of demon realms, impossible oceans, hidden fortresses—and devastatingly personal—a spear flung straight, the profound terror and power of motherhood. What Vasethe discovers in Mkalis threatens to bring his own secrets into light and throw both worlds into chaos.

My Thoughts:

Beautifully told, excellent execution. This is a strange, yet lyrical story of demons, gods, and more. Despite that this was less than 300 pages (240 exactly) it still packed a punch. Each chapter was new and interesting. I’m going to ponder this for ages.

Notes:

While I can write the characters names please don’t ask me to pronounce them. I honestly have no clue. I don’t do audiobooks though I may try to figure out how to say Vasethe.

My Review:

Vasethe goes to the Border Keeper for help. Eris, the name that he chooses to call the Border Keeper-for she has many names-is unimpressed with him. This whole book revolves around the pair of them, as Vasethe catches Eris up on current history, culture, people and more. Together the pair work together.

I can’t tell you more about the plot without giving away spoilers. There’s a quest involved, sort of, and more questions than there are answers. There’s a curse, and limited time in searching for that they hunt. There’s betrayals and confusion and lots of near death experiences. Magical and enchanting, I recommend this for fans that like unusual settings and great characters.

My Rating:

⭐ ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Library Book Review: Warrior of the Wild

Hello Everyone,

Title: Warrior of the Wild

Author: Tricia Levenseller

Series: Standalone

Genre: Fiction, Fantasy

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends 

Trigger Warnings: mentions of rape, bullying, favoritism, violence and monster gore

Book Summary:

How do you kill a god?

As her father’s chosen heir, eighteen-year-old Rasmira has trained her whole life to become a warrior and lead her village. But when her coming-of-age trial is sabotaged and she fails the test, her father banishes her to the monster-filled wilderness with an impossible quest: To win back her honor, she must kill the oppressive god who claims tribute from the villages each year—or die trying.

My Thoughts:

This surprised me by how good it was! I went into this completely blind and unaware of much of the plot. Sure, some of it was predictable but it was still enjoyable due to the banter, romance and it’s a standalone so I flew right through it. I liked there was a gay main character in it. I liked they all had happy endings. I was fast paced, with great characters and a believable plot. While I didn’t agree with how certain people got their ending, it was still well handled. The writing was strong and the book itself was fun.

My Rating:

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

So I Read The Belgariad Series: A Review

Hello Everyone,

Such lovely fantasy covers, don’t you think?

Back in my teens, before The Lord of the Rings and The Wheel of Time there was a little lesser known (or so it seems to me) fantasy series titled The Belgariad. I plowed through them all, one by one, and fell in love. There were actually women in here unlike in Lord of the Rings (where there were maybe a tiny handful barely mentioned) and the women were powerful, real, and not all of them magical. The writing was good and the characters were so real, I felt as though I was a part of their world if only for a while. Now granted, it had its flaws. Polgara could drive me insane after a while. Garion could be particularly stupid at times. But it had the atmospheric quest to defeat evil with a traveling company that I loved in Lord of the Rings and it also had powerful magical women that I admired out of Wheel of Time. It was the best of both worlds. And in 2009, I was saddened to learn that the author, David Eddings, had passed away.

Image found through Pinterest.

Now technically I have only read the first half of Belgariad. I’m right now on Guardians of the West and looking forward to plowing through the next half of the series. That’s also not including all of Eddings other books, series, and the like that I still haven’t read but hope to get to soon, when my insane tbr will let me.

I’ve just learned through Pinterest that there’s a prequel too. So fun! I’ll need to buy that, asap. But back to my review. If you liked the previous series that I mentioned (Lord of the Rings & Wheel of Time) and you enjoyed the series Iron Druid by Kevin Hearne, the Princess Bride by William Goldman and you liked Dresden Files by Jim Butcher you’ll probably love these books. There’s all sorts of side quests, a bit of politics down the line, a bit of romance here and there, a kidnapping, and plenty of battles filled with swords and magic both. The evil bad guys are numerous and the primary bad guy vaguely makes me think of the eye from the lord of the rings, but it’s all wonderful and worth investing in these books and reading them one by one. I suggest a fall reading. A cozy fire, and plenty of your favorite tea.

This is exactly the version that I have of the series!

I highly recommend this series it was one of my favorites and still is. If you haven’t yet read it, you definitely need to. Trust me, you’ll love it. It’s fun and entertaining and I hope they make a Netflix series for it one day.

My Rating:

⭐ ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Netgalley Review: Empire of Sand

EmpireofSandARC

Title: Empire of Sand
Author: Tasha Suri
Series: Book 1
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Orbit
Page Count: 500
Type of Book: ARC, Netgalley Read, Kindle Ebook
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars

I think this might be one of my top #5 books of the year. I’m still in awe of this book that I’ve just finished reading. I read a few chapters here and there the past couple of days, but when I reached chapter fifteen, I didn’t stop reading for almost an entire day, and now it’s currently resting at 9pm at night. That’s a lot of attention from one book. I just couldn’t stop. Merh was such a fascinating, empathetic, and completely believable character. The world-building was breathtaking and enormous, and there was just so much going on in each chapter, it was almost bewildering. It was a grand, epic fantasy adventure that I’d been craving since I’d last read The Expanse, or Outlander, or even Harry Potter-but in a completely different and wholly unexpected way.

Merh struck a deep cord in me, with her trying to keep her family safe from the Emperor and his people, while avoiding her mother’s side of the family and striving to be the quiet, obedient daughter of the Governor. She’s strong, however, and likes to test the bounderies of what she can and cannot do. But things begin to backfire, when her mother’s roots begin to show…and she begins to loose control of the peace she’s carefully built for herself over the years. Her stepmother hates her, and wants her away from her sister, while her father is slowly growing away from her, in large parts thanks to her hateful stepmother. Things are taking a dark turn.

And then the story opens up into such a wild and emotional ride with so many things that I didn’t see coming that I can’t help but keep flipping page after page. It’s imaginative, and glorious to read such a tear-jerker and gut-puncher of a story. Prepare to have tissues on hand, I nearly cried a few times, and it takes a lot to make me cry over a book.

Warnings: minor character deaths, suggested rape, attempted annihaliation of a race, forced arranged marriage, characters that you will hate, and scenes that might make you cry…

I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed this book, and deeply thank Orbit for approving me of a copy. I read the description of the book, saw the line on the cover that read “magic is in her blood” and knew that this was going to be one of my all time favorites, and I’m thrilled to say that I was absolutely right. I’m planning on buying this book when it comes out, to add to my top favorites, it’s that good. Needless to say, I’m giving this book 5/5 stars for its beautifully written tale of love, danger, and magic.

Until next time,
Pass Me That Book.

Kindle Ebook Review: Heart of Mist

Heart of Mist

Title: Heart of Mist
Author: Helen Scheuerer
Genre: Fantasy
Series: Book 1 of ?
Publisher: Talem Press
Page Count: 500
Type of Book: Purchased, Kindle Ebook,
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: Why do I wait so long to read such wonderful books? Because I’m an idiot, that’s why!

Warning: one attempted rape scene, an alcoholic character, bullying, murder, slavery, and death feature throughout this story. If you have triggers, then please keep these scenes in mind, as some of them are quite intense.

This book has been getting nothing but excellent reviews, and I am pleased to be one of many adding yet another excellent review to the pile. I really enjoyed this book, though the one thing I didn’t care for was the shifting of characters throughout the chapters. If it had just stuck with two characters, that would have been fine, but it took Game of Thrones theme and introduced us to various different characters, all with their own unique stories and impact.

I loved the main character, Bleak, most of all. While Bleak isn’t her real name, and we discover who she truly is towards the end of the book, Bleak’s a cool character because of the unique ability she has of being a mind-reader…along with so much more power that she has no idea about and isn’t ready to handle. She’s pretty bad-ass, and while she’s also got her faults, that just makes her a much more realistic character. I found it refreshing to have so many unique voices in a fantasy setting, most of those being bad-ass women more than capable of defending themselves.

My other complaint, however, is the cliffhanger ending. While it leaves it hanging wide open for book two, we also discover the name ‘oremere’ is significant in this series. It, as well as the mist, makes me feel like there is a lot more to this story than what we’ve learned in book one.

Needless to say, I’m giving this 4/5 stars. The reason it’s not five stars is because of the shifting character viewpoints, and a couple of characters I just did not identify with at all. Even so, I’m definitely interested in getting book two which is being released (has been released?) quite soon!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Review: The Late Great Wizard

The Last Great Wizard

Title: The Late Great Wizard
Author: Sara Hanover
Series: ?
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: DAW
Page Count: 350/400
Type of Book: ARC, paperback
Review Word Count:
Rated: 5/5 stars!
Notes: Perfect reading for the beginning of fall, complete with a haunting, house fire, and even wizards along with dwarves!

~*~

How can I share how much I love this book? This book bit me hard! I got it in the mail and spent the next three hours reading until I finished it, and wished that I could read it again! It’s lovely, and it’s absolutely the book that broke my reluctance in reading. It’s filled to the brim with magic, mystery, and even a missing person!

Things for those who haven’t read it that might interest them:
-A missing father
-A mysterious house burning
-The Mob
-Magic
-New York City
-College students
-a phoenix
-dwarves
-mysterious evil villains
-even a kidnapped/missing wife

This book instantly shot to the absolute top favorite list of fantasy novels! I loved every bit of it from beginning to end. Tessa is a cool character, Brian is a fascinating one, and there’s plenty of action, mystery, and family drama to be had within this book to make you wanting more.

It does lead up to a wide-open ending, meaning that there could definitely be a book two, but it doesn’t label it as a series on Goodreads, so I’m unsure if it’s actually a series or not.

I seriously hope there’s going to be a sequel to this book, because it’s built up enough of a backstory to warrant the return of several characters that I want to know more about. This was a book that will be one that I want to buy as it comes out on shelves, and I believe I’ll buy the hardcover, it’s that good! I’m definitely giving it 5/5 stars, and I hope it gets the detention it definitely deserves! I may re-read this for Halloween, because it’s got the perfect atmosphere for such a holiday!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Review: Halls of Law

 

Halls of Law

Title: Halls of Law

Author: V. M. Escalada

Series: Book One

Page Count: 500

Publisher: DAW/TOR/ACE

Type of Book: Arc, Mass Market Paperback

Review Word Count:

Rated: 5/5 stars

Notes: Darnit cliffhangers!!!!
What a cliffhanger. I’m so glad that I have book two ready and waiting, though if book two has as terrible a cliffhanger, I might wait for book three to come out because sheesh, the drama! the Romance! The life and death situations!

In other news, I want a baby griffin please.

Kerida’s story is one that fans of First Green Rider from Kristian Brittian as well as the Valdemar series by Mercedes Lackey fans will definitely enjoy. It’s got some of the same elements-traveling by horseback to survive enemies that are chasing after the main character for reasons unknown except they end with her head beneath that of an ax.

Can I say, I HATE the Hillarians (spelled right?-I don’t have the book with me to check). They’re system of getting rid of women because they’ve been controlling men with their witchcraft in their bodies, and keeping only a few that can be nothing but cattle is utterly ridiculous. I am seriously hoping that Kerida can defeat these arrogant hateful men with their idiotic system.

They are capturing men of high power and brainwashing men with a red jewel that completely changes the mans thoughts, actions, and makes them into an entirely new person that also hates women and witches that Kerida has always known as “Talents”.

It’s a complex, exciting, dramatic filled world-building that I really loved and enjoyed. I read through the book the entire day yesterday because I could not put it down. It was intense, and exactly the kind of thing that I love to read. Adventure, fantasy, a very slow burn kind of romance where both are oblivious of the other loving them kind of plot.

5/5 stars, and I’m off to get book two and start in on it immediately!

{Review also posted on my Goodreads.}

Netgalley Review: Fawkes

 

Fawkes

I was not yet ready to turn to stone. 

Title: Fawkes
Author: Nadine Brandes
Series:
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Page Count: 500
Publishing: Thomas Nelson
Type of Book: ARC, Netgalley Read, Kindle Ebook
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars
Notes: THE HYPE IS DESERVED!

Fawkes starts off with a bang, instantly capturing my attention and having me read a 500 page book in less than a day!

FawkesReviewImage{Look, I did art! For a review!}

Thomas Fawkes is turning to stone, and the only cure to the Stone Plague is to join his father’s plot to assassinate the king of England.

Silent wars leave the most carnage. The wars that are never declared, but are carried out in dark alleys with masks and hidden knives. Wars where color power alters the natural rhythm of 17th century London. And when the king calls for peace, no one listens until he finally calls for death.

But what if death finds him first?

Keepers think the Igniters caused the plague. Igniters think the Keepers did. But all Thomas knows is that the Stone Plague infecting his eye is spreading. And if he doesn’t do something soon, he’ll be a lifeless statue. So when his Keeper father, Guy Fawkes, invites him to join the Gunpowder Plot—claiming it will put an end to the plague—Thomas is in.

The plan: use 36 barrels of gunpowder to blow up the Igniter King.

The problem: Doing so will destroy the family of the girl Thomas loves. But backing out of the plot will send his father and the other plotters to the gallows. To save one, Thomas will lose the other.

No matter Thomas’s choice, one thing is clear: once the decision is made and the color masks have been put on, there’s no turning back.

-As Described on Goodreads

Then I read the first sentence: I was not ready to turn to stone, and I was HOOKED. From the very first sentence, this book was a true treasure to read. Thomas Fawkes was an easily identifiable character, the book was filled with twists and turns that I did not see coming, the world-building was unique and well written. I adore this book, and am putting it on my ‘to-buy-immediately’ list, because it’s well worth sitting on my shelves for when I want a re-read.

This book ripped my emotions apart several times. There’s a violent plague going on in this book, and the main character is affected, but with only one eye so that he wears an eyepatch most of the time. He hopes to get a mask from his father after passing a test in order to make it so that people don’t see his affliction and so that he can have the power to help change things. When his father doesn’t show up as he’s promised to do, Thomas Fawkes takes matters into his own hands and goes out to find him.

This book was a delicious read, from beginning to end, and I can’t give you enough reasons why you should read it, only that it needs to be added to your TBR post-haste! It’s got thieves and spies and London and plagues and magic and….what more could you want?

Giving this book a very well deserved 5/5 stars for it’s beautiful voice and unique world-building skills!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

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