Tag Archives: mystery

The Battle for Trimera: The Ruling Priestess Book 1 by Tanya SM Kennedy (Book Review)

To give in could mean the loss of everything she holds dear but resisting is tearing her apart.

All Pria wants is to protect her family, but as one of only two high priestesses in all of Reia, everyone has an opinion on her life. But as the stories reach her of the peril of Trimera, there is nothing she will not give to return to the only family she has left, her older brother Janu. Emotion is dangerous for a priestess, something she realizes all to keenly when she thinks about her brother’s friend Mian. 

From the day she was born, Mian knew he would die for Pria. But the woman that returns from the Lorien is a pale shadow of the fiery girl he remembers. Still scarred by the loss of his Prince’s advisor, the previous high priestess, he now has to watch his Pria face the same danger. But the more he tries to protect the high strung Pria, the angrier she gets. The only thing he knows for sure is that Trimera would not survive the loss of Pria; that he would not survive the loss of Pria. 

A mysterious being has gained control of the monstrous grinlo and every second that ticks by only serves to confirm that they are after Pria. With the Lorien watching her every move she can’t afford even the hint of weakness. But the longer she spends with Mian the more addled she finds her thoughts. How will she save Trimera when her very emotions could spell ruin?

The Battle for Trimera is the opening to the epic Ruling Priestess medieval fantasy series. If you like compelling characters, epic battles against savage monsters, and a gripping story, then you will love Tanya SM Kennedy’s tale of a priestess struggling against tradition to save her home. 

Pick up your copy of The Battle for Trimera and join the fight to save Trimera today!

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

 

At almost 600 pages, The Battle of Trimera is not only a beast in size, but the story is busting out the seams with blood-thirsty creatures. The grinlo are vicious beasts with sharp, black claws. Many men, women, and children have encountered them, yet survivors are few and far between. Ortid, one lone survivor, witnessed their wickedness firsthand. He stumbled up a very gruesome, gory, unforgettable, and stomach-turning scene. The grinlo’s leader, Neram, might be a man, but he was a monster just the same.  

As you are well aware, you can’t have a villain without a hero or heroes. There’re a check and balances in life, real or imaginary. In this scenario, multiple individuals band together to defend their land from the grinlo: Prince Janu, Lord Mian, Priestess Lana, Priestess Pria, Jaren, Liando, and various other soldiers. 

 

At three hundred page mark, Priestess Pria’s mind is troubled. She’s on the hunt for the person pulling the strings of the grinlo, and she’s trying to keep Mian at a safe distance. She wants to be seen as an adult, a powerful High Priestess; however, he makes her feel like a child again. Up to this point, if Pria looked closely, she would see he doesn’t –not entirely. His attraction to her is becoming more apparent for all to see. 

The sexual tension between Pria and Mian is growing with each page. 

 

The next 150 pages were quite active. There were nasty creatures, big and small, being a pain in the neck (literally and figuratively). Emotions also reached the boiling point, and, instead of throwing barbs at each other, Pria and Main let their true feelings show. No, they didn’t shag, but they had some steamy kisses.  

 

From page 450 until the endThe Battle of Trimera kept the same speed as the pages before it. The pace wasn’t too fast or slow. In actuality, Tanya (the author) balanced everything quite well. Overall, I felt she took ample time to develop characters, their relationship to each other, history, plot, etc. She had death scenes, but they weren’t overly detailed. Sure, they were gross but not horror movie gross (if that makes sense). Basically, what I’m saying, Tanya gave us enough visual stimuli to allow the reader to get the picture but not be overwhelmed.

There were some sections I wanted, craved more embellishment on, but I get why Tanya refrained. As I stated in my opening sentence, The Battle of Trimera was almost 600 pages long. 

To sum up, a great book and definitely worth the price tag attached!

 

 

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

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Tanya SM Kennedy was born in the wilds of West Virginia where she was raised to be strong, independent, and bull-headed. She spends her free time (any she can find) reading, writing, and taking care of her menagerie. She still lives in the wilds of West Virginia with her family enjoying the solitude.

 


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The ‘Trueborn Heirs’ Series by Nyna Queen (2 Book Showcase)

“I’m a spider, sugar. My shaper kind doesn’t bear that name for nothing.”

 

That’s not something Alexis Harper dares to say very often. If she did, it might just get her killed. Not that she is an easy mark, but even fools get lucky once in a while.

In a world where the magically gifted trueborn rule and the magicless halfborn slog away in the slums, half-blood mongrels like Alex are outcasts—feared and shunned. For most of her life, she has lurked in the shadows, trying to keep her true nature a secret. But the secrecy ends abruptly when she saves two trueborn aristo children from a group of hired killers.

Accused of a crime she didn’t commit, Alex suddenly finds herself running from powerful enemies, with no one around to trust. Or what about the mysterious stranger who has been following her? He is one of Death’s Servants, born and bred to kill at the country’s command. Not the most preferable ally, but then, her choices are limited. Soon she has to decide whether she can trust him or not—it’s a gamble she might not survive either way. And before Alex knows what is happening, her life is hanging by a silken thread…

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THE room was long and sterile and reminded Alex too much of a hospital: white tiled floor, metal shelves, slim silver objects glinting dully in the too bright overhead lights, the biting scent of disinfectant … It brought back memories of her sire’s bedroom just before he died, and she instantly felt sick to her stomach. 

Dr. Creevy, a scrawny man with thinning gray hair, in a stained white lab coat, stood waiting beside a naked metal cot with leather shackles attached to all four corners. Alex felt Darken stiffen beside her and quickly put a restraining hand on his arm—just to pull back when a little shock tingled through her fingertips. 

“It’s alright,” she muttered softly, although her stomach churned at the sight of the cot. “I might shape during the process and accidentally hurt someone.” 

Darken’s eyes wandered from the cot to her and back, and slowly widened in understanding. “You’ve done this before.” 

She nodded. And no pleasant memory was linked to the experience. But sometimes there simply was no other choice. Like right now. 

He studied the cot again and she could almost hear the blocks falling into place as he drew the right conclusions. His eyes narrowed and grew darker. Dangerously dark. “And this will hurt you.” It wasn’t really a question. 

Quite quick on the uptake, aren’t we, Mr. Trueborn? 

“I’m afraid that can’t be avoided.” 

Resentment flooded those cavernous brown eyes, liquid red anger churning right below the surface. “Then there has to be another way.” 

Alex blinked. Just like that, huh?

He did sound like he meant it, too.

Why? she wondered. To assume that her pain would matter anything to him, would be foolish. They barely knew each other. And she hadn’t exactly done a great job endearing herself to him in the past day. 

Maybe he didn’t like to be indebted. She certainly didn’t. And a debt of pain wasn’t one easily paid back. 

“Well, I don’t really see another way, sugar. Do you?” Now would be a good moment to mention it. 

He scowled. Yep, that’s what I thought

His gaze went back to the cot and his lips pressed together in obvious discontent. “I don’t like this!” 

She barked a short laugh. “Neither do I, sugar, but if we want this portal, someone will have to bite the bullet. Looks like that someone is going to be me. But don’t worry, it won’t kill me—and if it does”—she raised her arms and batted her lashes at him—“spares you the effort.” 

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Print Purchase LinkBuy Web of Lies: Trueborn Heirs Series Book 2

The witty, action-packed sequel to Nyna Queen’s urban fantasy / paranormal romance debut BY A THREAD. Filled to the brim with treachery, forbidden love, racism, loyalty, and unexpected friendship.

A royal gathering. She isn’t invited. And if they find her, they will kill her… 

Against all odds, Alex Harper survived her deadly wounds and managed to shake off her faceless pursuers. But she is hardly safe. With a death sentence looming over her, she must quickly find out who is pulling the strings in this twisted game she has become a part of – before they catch her. But that means infiltrating the trueborn royal elite; a glamorous world that possesses no love for shaper mongrels such as Alex. One wrong step will be the death of her.

To make things worse, she has to work with Darken again. Now back in trueborn territory, the scorching hot Deathbringer has retreated behind his armor of fire and the class difference between them becomes painfully obvious. Can their feelings for each other survive this growing gulf? Not that it will matter if Alex’s self-control isn’t good enough to pass for a member of the elite, and in the Royal Palace of all places! Caught between dark secrets and political intrigues, Alex soon realizes that she has entangled herself in a deadly web of lies…

 

What readers of the series say …

  • “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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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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The Kelping: Rewind or Die Book 9 by Jan Stinchcomb (Book Review)

Print Length: 68 pages

Doctor Craig Bo has everything: a perfect wife and children, a thriving dermatology practice, and a house in a lovely coastal town. Nobody is surprised when he is chosen to be the Sea King of Beachside in his hometown’s annual festival.

But after the festival Craig’s world turns upside down. Something starts growing on his skin. His son tells him a story about a sinister mermaid who lives in the attic of the local history museum. And his beautiful wife, Penelope, can no longer hide her dark connection to the sea.

As Craig grapples with his own secrets and misdeeds, he finally understands the woman he married and the plans she has for him.

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

 

When you think of mermaids, your mind probably first goes to The Little Mermaid; sweet, singing, happy go lucky, under the sea people. 

Jan (the author) DID NOT write a Disney tale. Instead, she wrote a story that would make the Grimm Brothers proud. 

As a reader, Penelope was throwing up red flags all over the place. Certain phrases in conversations would lead any smart man to run for the hills. Example: Penelope wants him to “worship” only her. 

Craig didn’t see or didn’t want to see the warning signs that something was off about his wife. Heck, if he looked hard enough, I bet he could see she had crazy eyes. That’s the problem, he didn’t stop to look. Craig thought with his little head, and Little Craig got him into a particularly sticky situation. 

I didn’t feel compassion for Craig. I didn’t care about the outcome of anyone besides Dash. 

While I did like the progression of Craig’s inevitable transformation, I wanted more horror, much like we glimpsed in the opening credits. 

No doubt, this was an intriguing short story and one worth reading.

 
Heart rating system:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest)
Score: ❤❤❤1/2
 

 

 

Jan Stinchcomb is the author of The Kelping (Unnerving), The Blood Trail (Red Bird Chapbooks) and Find the Girl (Main Street Rag). Her stories have recently appeared in WigleafHobart and Pithead Chapel. A Pushcart nominee, she is featured in Best Microfiction 2020 and The Best Small Fictions 2018. She lives in Southern California with her family. Visit her at janstinchcomb.com or on Twitter @janstinchcomb.

 

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The Unexpected Inlander by Kellyn Thompson (Book Review)

 

Agent Christopher Rockford has been the best assassin in the agency for eight years, and he loves his job. He loves his solitary lifestyle. He loves keeping the world safe by getting rid of anarchists who threaten their orderly society. He loves his comfortable life as a member of the wealthy Coastal upper class.

But in pursuit of a target, he meets Jenna, a mysterious civilian who belongs to society’s lowest and most shunned group. Meeting her is a life-changing experience. She makes him feel for the first time, and he is instantly captivated.

She boldly stands in the face of everything he has ever known and was taught to believe. He begins to see the world through her eyes, causing him to question his job, his lifestyle, and The Order he so obediently serves. It’s not long before he can’t imagine his life without her.

There’s just one problem: He knows she would leave him if she ever found out about his job. He knows this because he asked her how she felt about assassins in their government, and she was utterly disgusted with the idea, even though she believes their existence is just a myth.

As their relationship grows and intensifies, he knows he cannot keep the truth from her for long.

But Jenna has her own secrets to keep.

Set in an orderly world of near-perfect surveillance, genetically modified humans, and extreme socioeconomic divide, The Unexpected Inlander will take you through Chris’s journey of self-discovery and learning that change begins within.

 

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

 

When I was asked to read The Unexpected Inlander, I checked out the cover and the book summary. The cover was simple, but the book summary alluded the story would be anything but ordinary. 

Chris is a man dedicated to his job, that being the job of a government assassin. He’s never once questioned his assignments. That is until the assignment becomes personal.  

Chris is not a stone-cold killer, void of any emotion. He’s sweet, considerate, good with his hands, and loving. He’s also a badass with weaponry and taking out his targets… so I guess you can say he’s a well-rounded individual. 😀 

Jenna, she was just meh. She didn’t stand out to me, like Chris. She felt more like a supporting actress than the main star. 

Plot summation: The plot wasn’t hard to figure out, but the road to closing the Robertson’s case was very entertaining. 

Recommend? 

YES! 

Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score:  

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A few things about me:

  • Yes, Kellyn Thompson is a pen name. Why? Because I write non-fiction science articles and am into SciComm, for which I use my given name. I thought it would be best to keep my fiction writing separate from the non-fiction science writing, ergo I used a different name when I decided to write fiction.
  • I do love writing (hence my first blog post, titled, “Why I love writing“), but I hate writing about myself. Maybe this blog will help me on that front. But I much prefer the solace I find in the objectivity of science or the dreamy unreality of fiction.
  • I reside in the great Pacific Northwest in the United States.
  • I have a dark sense of humor. My whole family does.
  • I need at least two cups of coffee to get going in the morning. It’s not a good idea for me to try to do anything substantial before finishing that second cup.
  • I love animals and biology and the magic (er…science) of life in general and, of course, books and cats.
  • I loooooooove being dramatic in my fiction writing, haaaaate being dramatic in real life.
  • And, finally, in case it’s not obvious, I am very new to blogging–Thank you for your patience! and any tips you have 🙂

 

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Ghost Moon by Kathryn Knight (Book Review)

When Lark Cavanaugh’s life in New York City falls apart, she’s left reeling from a staggering betrayal. She escapes to Cape Cod, where a distant relative has left her an old house with a tragic past. Rumors of a haunting presence plague the abandoned home, but Lark doesn’t believe in ghosts…until she has no choice.

After completing his military duty, veterinarian Jesse Holt returns to his small hometown to take over his father’s practice. He soon finds himself drawn to the alluring redhead now living next door, but she has made her intentions clear—she’s moving back to the city as soon as possible. When frightening events threaten her safety, though, he can’t deny his protective instincts.

Unable to fight their feelings, they give in to desire…but another battle looms. Lark’s arrival has awakened a decades-old mystery, and the truth of what happened at Holloway House will only be revealed when it claims yet another life.

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

 

Without a doubt, Lark is a much braver woman than I. Even before her bags were unpacked, the house felt off to her. Preston, her cat, felt a disturbance in the force as well.

I understand money is tight, and options seem scarce, but I don’t think I’d move into a house that’s a hotspot for paranormal activity. 

Moans. 

Loud Crashes.

Apparitions.

Eerie sounds (lullaby tune).

Flickering lights.

Brrr, who turned down the heat?!

 

And that’s just what Lark is facing in her waking hours. Don’t get me started on her sleepy time horrors. I mean, I could, but I don’t want to give too much away. I want people to read Ghost Moon. It was spooky, but it also contained the right amount of romance. No, Lark didn’t get it on with a ghost. She fell for a military vet who was also a veterinarian. 

If you like paranormal (supernatural) stories that have a mixture of suspense, mystery, romance, and spookiness, then I encourage you to BUY GHOST MOON. 

 

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

 

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USA TODAY Bestselling Author Kathryn Knight writes books filled with steamy romance, dangerous secrets, and haunting mysteries. Her novels are award-winning #1 Amazon and B&N Bestsellers and RomCon Reader-Rated picks. When she’s not reading or writing, Kathryn spends her time exploring abandoned places and searching for ghosts. She lives on beautiful Cape Cod with her husband, their two sons, and a number of rescued pets.

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