Tag Archives: fantasy

Blind the Eyes: A Dystopian-Gothic YA Urban Fantasy by K.A. Wiggins (Book Spotlight)

BLIND THE EYES by K.A. Wiggins

 
​A haunted teen outcast and her snarky ghostly best-frenemy outwit enforcers, monsters, and the scars of the past in a race to take expose a deadly conspiracy and escape a bloody end. A lush, award-winning debut to a captivatingly eerie YA Urban Fantasy trilogy. Discover a labyrinthine, post-climate-collapse dystopian Vancouver overrun by monsters and magic in this intricate and startlingly original journey of discovery, restoration, and revenge.
 
 
It’s hard not to be a little obsessed with survival when your only “friend” is an unruly ghost and the wrong thought could get your soul devoured by eldritch horrors. Haunted 17-year-old outcast Cole wants nothing more than to hide her forbidden fascination with the monster-taken and blend in with the (dreary) scenery. Her plans for a peaceful life take a turn for the deadly when a mesmerizing stranger and his dangerously tempting offer drive her into the middle of a grisly conspiracy.
 
But Cole hasn’t yet uncovered the biggest secret of all, and it might just have something to do with the mysterious threads tugging her into horrifying visions—not to mention the shimmering boy at their dark heart. Uncovering the truth will cost her dearly as she fends off scheming enforcers, dreamjacking ghosts & soul-sucking nightmares in a desperate quest for survival and retribution. Can she escape the scars of her past and expose the lies before she’s the next to die?
 
 
 
Blind the Eyes is the first book in a lush and labyrinthine trilogy of paranormal-meets-gothic-dystopian YA Urban Fantasy filled with glittering underworlds, delicious-and-deceptive strangers, and facing down the voices in your head. This slow-burn fantasy with an edge leads readers on a captivatingly unexpected journey of self-discovery, reclaimed identity, and conflicted sisterhood for those who like a little sparkle with their monsters (it glistens so nicely on all the blood.) Fans of post-climate-collapse dystopias, monsters-and-magic, and genre-bending dark fantasy will love this award-winning series starter in a complete and 100% binge-ready trilogy.
 
 
 
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Meet the Author:
 
Author K.A. Wiggins

 

K.A. Wiggins (Kaie) writes award-winning speculative fiction for young people and adults that explores the tangled webs of society, environment, and identity through intricate, dreamlike tales of monsters and magic.

Her debut novel was a Page Turner Awards 2020 Book Spotlight Prize winner and a Barnes & Noble Press “20 Favorite Indie Books of 2018,” kicking off a celebrated and recently completed YA Urban Fantasy trilogy set in a gothic-dystopian post-climate-collapse Vancouver. Her short fiction has appeared in small press anthologies, genre magazines, and in translation for international audiences.

She’s also the President of the Children’s Writers and Illustrators of British Columbia society, co-founder of marketing and business services consultancy The Creative Collective, and a creative writing coach with the Creative Writing for Children society, and was recognized in the 2021 Arty Awards, taking first place in Literary Arts category.

 

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The Living Christmas Tree by Kristin Sponaugle (Book Review)

THE LIVING CHRISTMAS TREE by Kristin Sponaugle

2021 Family Choice Award Winner

 

During the day, the Miller family’s Christmas tree stands tall in their living room, sparkling with lights and ornaments. Little does the family know that their Christmas tree is anything but ordinary. Each evening, the magic of Christmas brings their tree to life—much to the delight of Hannah and William Miller. Follow along as Hannah and William experience the magic of Christmas in a whole new way.
 
 
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 I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
Christmas is a magical time of year. The days, and especially the night before it, are filled with excitement for young children. They dream about Santa leaving them toys, gobbling up the cookies, and drinking the milk. Kristin Sponaugle made the holiday even more magical by bringing ornaments to life in The Living Christmas Tree. As you know from the success of the Toy Story franchise, kids love when their favorite items become “real” and interactive. 


Every child, young in body or heart, will adore the beautiful ornaments illustrated by Agus Prajogo. We loved every single one! They were cute, fun to watch at play, and brought a smile to our faces. 


My youngest doesn’t believe in Santa anymore, but we agreed you don’t have to believe in Christmas magic to enjoy The Living Christmas Tree


Imagination has no age limit. We sat and discussed what ornaments on our tree we’d like to see come to life. Since my youngest wants superhero ornaments on the tree this year, she picked those to become active at night. 🙂


Great story. 


Beautiful illustrations. 


A marvelous addition to any home, school, or library. 

 
 
Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤

 
 
 
 
 
 
Meet the Author:
Author Kristin Sponaugle

 
Kristin Sponaugle was born in Butler, Pennsylvania. She graduated from Duquesne University, where she received her bachelor’s degree in health sciences and her master’s degree in physician assistant studies. Kristin had always dreamed of becoming an author, and made that dream a reality with her two published children’s books, The Princess Puppy and The Living Christmas Tree. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, cross-stitching, and playing with her Maltese dog, Rosie. Kristin lives with her husband, daughter, and Rosie, and resides wherever the Air Force sends them.
 
 
Connect with the Author: website ~ facebook instagram
 
 

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War of the Staffs by Steve Stephenson and K.M. Tedrick (Book Review)

The goddess Adois brings a powerful vampire warlock named Taza through the void to turn Muiria into a planet of evil using her powerful staff. Needing an army, he turns a race of dark elves into vampires, but Prince Tarquin is born to fulfill a prophecy to stop Taza.

The prince cannot do it alone. The Wizard Celedant sends him to the Borderers, an elite group of dwarves to learn how to fight, while the wizard begins his search for the Staff of Adaman, the only thing capable of thwarting Taza and Adois’ Staff.

War of the Staffs is the search for two pieces of the ancient Staff of Adaman to counter Adois’ plans. The darkness is rising and using the black power of the Staff of Adois and his army of dark elves, giants, and orcs, Taza will begin a reign of terror the planet will not soon forget.

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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

 

There were quite a few elements in War of the Staffs that reminded me of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. However, War of Staffs differed from the popular series (mentioned in the opening sentence) by incorporating vampires and unique magic abilities. Taza (warlock and vamp) used his specially acquired magical skills to infiltrate his enemies and summon beasts of all sizes. The creatures he controlled led us into some pretty epic battle scenes. You’ll witness clashes between dwarves and orcs, wizard versus wizard, powerful beasts descending from above, and those awaiting the heroes in dark caves. There were numerous entanglements, so you won’t have to wait long for action scenes! 

With the number of characters featured in War of the Staffs, this book could have its own trading card set. People would probably love to roleplay the book. However, I would suggest a Glossary of Characters and Terms. 

Heads up: War of the Staffs is book one in a series. 

 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤1/2

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KM Tedrick is a writer and ghostwriter in the fantasy, science fiction, adventure, Christian, and young adult genres with one book that was made into a movie, and over sixteen books published.
 
 
Author Steve Stephenson an admitted bibliophile collects rare fantasy and science fiction media. He obtained a B.A. in history and an M.A. in Library Science. He has written four books including the War of the Staffs trilogy.
 
 
You can connect with Steve Stephenson through his Facebook Link or at Linkedin
 

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Kissed by Death: Trueborn Heirs Series (Book 3) by Nyna Queen (Book Review)

The stunning finale to Nyna Queen’s original Trueborn Heirs Trilogy.

 

A terrible secret. An impossible choice. And a love worth dying for…

After the horrible disaster at the Summerball, Alexis Harper and her allies are running out of time. Not only has the murder messed up all their careful plans, but Alex is also threatened to become the focus of the investigations. In search of the missing pieces in this enigmatic puzzle, she and Darken embark on a perilous journey to an abandoned prison camp deep in the mountains — and make a discovery more shocking than anything they could have imagined. A discovery that, if revealed, will shake the country to its very foundations.

At the same time, the Spider and the Forfeit find themselves at an emotional crossroads. At this point, it’s all or nothing. But just as they reluctantly admit their feelings for each other, events force them apart and suddenly Alex is faced with a terrible choice: to run and safe her own life or to stay and fight for the truth and the man she loves, even if it may cost her life.

As Alex spins a crazy spider’s trap, one thing soon becomes clear—one way or another, she will end up being kissed by Death…

 

Buckle up for witty banter, steam, and plot-twists that will leave you breathless.

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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

 

Kissed by Death by Nina Queen far exceeded my expectations, and the bar was set pretty high after reading By a Thread (book one) and Web of Lies (book 2). 

Kissed by Death had suspense, explosions, life and death missions, mic drop moments, pain and torture, and betrayal. Finally, over a long wait, we had Alex and Darken locking lips and other body parts. 😀

These two, in joined or separate scenes, always kept me on the edge of my seat. When Darken made a person wet themself, I laughed because I knew it would happen. I love being right. (Name withheld to avoid spoilers). During the Master’s hissy fit, I could practically see the spit flying out of his mouth and Alex’s shit-eating grin. 

Every bit of this story was spectacular, and I can’t wait to read Josepha’s story; the summary is located in “What’s Next.”

Final note: I love Alex’s spider senses and her ability to run 30 miles without breaking a sweat. 

 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score:  
❤ 

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About Nyna Queen

Nyna started reading fantasy books at the sweet age of six (in fact, as soon as she could read) and never got out of it. After she finished her law degree, she finally decided to commit herself to a career as an author. When she isn’t reading a book or dreaming up another story, she works as a lawyer, indulges in way too much coffee and enjoys long walks in the sun. If you are looking for Nyna, you’ll likely find her behind her laptop, hitting the keys, writing down her latest novel ideas – careful, if you speak to her now, she might not remember later!

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Kissed by Death: Trueborn Heirs Series (Book 3) by Nyna Queen (Book Showcase)

The stunning finale to Nyna Queen’s original Trueborn Heirs Trilogy.

 

A terrible secret. An impossible choice. And a love worth dying for…

After the horrible disaster at the Summerball, Alexis Harper and her allies are running out of time. Not only has the murder messed up all their careful plans, but Alex is also threatened to become the focus of the investigations. In search of the missing pieces in this enigmatic puzzle, she and Darken embark on a perilous journey to an abandoned prison camp deep in the mountains — and make a discovery more shocking than anything they could have imagined. A discovery that, if revealed, will shake the country to its very foundations.

At the same time, the Spider and the Forfeit find themselves at an emotional crossroads. At this point, it’s all or nothing. But just as they reluctantly admit their feelings for each other, events force them apart and suddenly Alex is faced with a terrible choice: to run and safe her own life or to stay and fight for the truth and the man she loves, even if it may cost her life.

As Alex spins a crazy spider’s trap, one thing soon becomes clear—one way or another, she will end up being kissed by Death…

 

 

Buckle up for witty banter, steam, and plot-twists that will leave you breathless.

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  • WOW! This Book is EXACTLY why I fell in LOVE with the Paranormal/Urban Fantasy Genre!” — Read Between the Lines

  • “I absolutely loved this book! Once started, I just didn’t want to stop reading.” — Elbcrout

  • “After just a few pages you immediately feel like a part of the world, as you are observing from within, watching the events unfold.” — the_survivor

  • “Nyna Queen does an exceptional job diving deep into the minds of her characters, and her imagery and use of metaphors are at the expert level.” — T&S M

  • “I’ve put Nyna Queen on my author watch list. This is superb storytelling.”Tiella150

  • Ms. Queen has positioned herself as one of the best new authors I have ever read. Excellent work.” — Colleen

  • “I couldn’t put this book down. It has a really unique group of characters and a fresh story.” — Amazon Customer

  • “The story is brought together with seamless writing and world-building. The author brings familiar together with the unfamiliar to where everything seems normal. If you want a book with a mystery interwoven with suspense and a sprinkling of a romance then this book is for you.” — Tabby

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A beam of moonlight broke through the drifting clouds, reflecting from solid black eyes not five feet from him.

Darken’s hand jerked toward his sword, pulling it halfway out of its scabbard before he realized it was Alex.

Mother’s mercy and Jester’s grace! And the Blind Child’s cursed eyes in the dark! If the moon hadn’t chosen to blink through the cloud cover at that moment, he might never have known she was there.

Alex let out a soft, silvery laugh as she stepped from the shadows between the trees, her pale face and blond braid seemingly floating bodiless in the darkness around her.

“Jumpy, aren’t we? Expecting an attack, Forfeit?”

The wind carried over her scent, a floral note of jasmine from the perfume she’d worn this afternoon mixed with a hint of feminine sweat from the run, and something so specifically Alex—both sweet and sharp and slightly musky—it unleashed a stream of lava into his blood, burning through his veins and setting his loins on fire. Need almost swept him off his feet.

Darken clenched his jaw and curled his hands into fists. They were on a mission, for heaven’s sake!

Moving with iron control, Darken sheathed his sword and forced himself to relax back against the wall of the shelter, crossing one foot over the other.

“Actually, I was getting worried about you. What took you so long? I thought you might have gotten lost.”

A sharp smile parted Alex’s lips like the flash of a knife’s blade. She rocked forward on her toes. “Lies! I’m almost half an hour before our scheduled meeting time.”

Darken lifted a surprised eyebrow. “How do you know?”

“Shaper, remember?” She tapped her temple with one finger. “We have an extremely good sense of time, like an internal clock, especially with the help of the sun and moon. Speaking of which”—she nodded up at the sky which was a ragged puzzle of clouds and blinking stars—“we only have a few short hours until dawn. If I want to be back at the Canterbury Estate before sunrise, we should get moving.”

Darken cocked his head to the side. “You seem quite eager for someone who just ran over thirty miles.”

“Oh, that! Phst!” Alex waved a hand. “Not worth mentioning. Please, don’t make any concessions on my behalf, I’m all good to go. Unless, of course, you need some more time to rest your royal footsies from your journey?” 

A honey pie would have wilted in comparison to the sweetness in her voice.

Darken locked his teeth and performed a slightly stiff bow. “I’ve only been waiting for you, milady.”

 

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Buy book 1 and 2 today!


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About Nyna Queen

Nyna started reading fantasy books at the sweet age of six (in fact, as soon as she could read) and never got out of it. After she finished her law degree, she finally decided to commit herself to a career as an author. When she isn’t reading a book or dreaming up another story, she works as a lawyer, indulges in way too much coffee and enjoys long walks in the sun. If you are looking for Nyna, you’ll likely find her behind her laptop, hitting the keys, writing down her latest novel ideas – careful, if you speak to her now, she might not remember later!

 
 

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