Tag Archives: scifi

Queen of Corvids: Raven Crawford by J. C. McKenzie (Book Review)

Raven Crawford Book 3

 

Truth can be ugly and part-time waitress, casual PI investigator, and half-fae shifter, Raven Crawford, can’t deny she owes the Lord of War a favour. If she defaults on her debt, she relinquishes all her power to a man who doesn’t know the meaning of mercy. And she thought her bank loans were bad.

With her new role in the Underworld contending with her debt to a dictator, a budding romance with the Lord of Shadows, and her need to pay the bills, Raven is in serious need of balance. But the moment the dark fae walked into her diner months ago, she’s been off-balance.It’s time for Raven to pull up her big girl socks and prove to everyone she’s no longer the burnt-out waitress with a nifty parlour trick.

She’s the Queen of Corvids.

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

What I loved about Queen of Corvids, using the alphabet as my guide.

It’ll be hard, but I’ll try my best not to reveal spoilers. Heads up, some lines will make sense after reading the story, so I encourage you all to buy/read Queen of Corvids!

Proceed with caution! 

 

Assasins

Bane, a character you’ll love to hate. 

Chad Berkley, aka Tarzan. I hope we see more of this Roller! 

Dungeon has visitors. 

Erebus. I rather liked his interaction with Nyx. He amused me. 

Frey. He wasn’t very good at being bad. 

GOLD!

Hyenas messed with the wrong family. 

Investigations.

Juni. Watch out for her right hook! 

Killing is not always the answer. 

Lord of the Shadows. Cole has more love in his 💖 than most mortal men. 

Marcus. He pulled at my heartstrings. 

Nyx. Her screen time wasn’t long, but she made a lasting impression nonetheless. 

Odin’s shriveled nuggets! 

Pepe the goat, familiar to a well-known magical character. 

Queen’s power is finally in full display. 

Rourke, a sarcastic badass with a huge heart. 

Scythe. Kick ass weapon! 

Troll battle. 

Unofficial Crawford. Read and found out who’s joined the family.

Victims. Multiple deaths! 

“Where’s the rest of it?” (Quote pertains to her court attire.)

Xcellent read. Yeah, I misspelled it on purpose. 🙂

Gododdin. 

Zip to the end for Glossary of Terms.

 

Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score:  ❤1/2

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~~ CHECK OUT BOOK ONE! ~~

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My Book Review!

 

~~ And BOOK TWO! ~~


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J.C. McKenzie is a book-loving, gumboot-wearing, unapologetic science geek. She’s the author of the Carus Series, an urban fantasy five-book saga published by the Wild Rose Press. Born and raised on the West Coast, J. C. sets the majority of her books in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, Canada. She writes urban fantasy and paranormal romance with sassy heroines and brutish, alpha-type men.

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Torch: A Lovelock Novel by Tricia Copeland (Book Showcase)

Lovelock Book 2

 

They can save the human race. To do it, they must take down their own government…

Sixteen-year-old Jema is on the run. Branded a traitor for trying to share a DNA-based cure for a lethal contagion, she and her friends are hunted by forces loyal to her sinister uncle. And unless they force him to release the formula, she fears a worldwide war to claim the antigen.

Forced to fight like soldiers in the desolate desert, Jema learns there could be sympathizers who will support a coup. But with only scavenged food and fading hope, she and her small group of grimly determined teens face a deadly trek across dangerous territory.

Can Jema get the cure in the public domain before the planet descends into bloodshed and chaos?

 

Torch is the second book in the thrilling Lovelock YA dystopian science fiction series. If you like intense action, courage under pressure, and races against time, then you’ll love Tricia Copeland’s fast-paced novel.

Buy Torch to battle for humanity’s survival today!

 

*´¨*)
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(¸.•´ (¸.•`Don’t miss Torch! Now Available $0.99 or Free on KU!

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Excerpt

07 JANUARY 2070

“Okay, I’m officially confused.” Troy cut the radio. “It’s been three weeks. They should at least have something about vaccination centers.”

“Death counts seem to be holding steady which means they’re distributing the anti-viral to those that are sick, right?”

“Who knows what they’re doing. If all that crap we went through was for nothing, I’m going to be majorly pissed.” Troy stomped towards me.

“Hey, pregnant mama here. Calm down.” I held the hare out to him.

“Fine, but I’m definitely going to need an extra-long run tonight.”

“Does the answer to all your anxiety have to be to run?” I lowered the mother rabbit into its pen.

“Maybe there’ll be some eggs. If I have to eat rabbit another day, I think I might kill myself.”

“You could always eat one of the MREs. With the crops and animals, we’re going to have enough food for fifty people soon.” Cleaning my hands, I followed him to the bird coops.

Troy opened the pen, and the road runners scattered. “The meal kits are for emergency use only. We have to be self-sufficient.”

“Is that why I’m hurting my brain to learn electronics, fluids, and mechanics?”

Reaching in a nest, he produced two eggs. “Hey, I stroked a rabbit’s belly to feel for a pea-sized mass that’s supposed to be a baby rabbit. You can learn to hack a computer. Besides if something happens to one of us—”

“Stop, now you sound like my dad. I can fend for myself.”

He kissed my cheek. “We take care of each other, right?”

Leaving the eggs in the kitchen, we weaved through a tunnel to our hidden exit. I loved the feel of the cool air on my skin and the calming effect the darkness had on me. My shoulders relaxed, and I took a deep breath. Traipsing to the road, we stretched and started to run. At the half-hour mark, we looped around.

Cresting a hill, Troy grabbed my arm and pulled me to the ground. Hear that? he signed to me.

Holding my breath, I listened but shook my head. With his super senses, it didn’t mean anything that I couldn’t detect the sound. If he had, we needed to be wary. Staying low, we cut away from the road, stopping every fifty feet to listen.

Vehicle engine, he signed.

We slowed our pace. The highway passed eighteen miles northwest of us, and I wondered if he could hear a motor from that distance. Maybe many vehicles? But what would a convoy be doing this far from the border? My heart raced. Looking for us was the answer.

At our next stop, I heard it, a low roar of an engine in the distance, the crackle of tires on asphalt, rocks pelting the hard desert floor in their wake.

How many? How far away are they? Can you see lights?

Troy nodded. They’re slowing down.

 

*´¨*)
¸.•*´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•`Don’t miss Torch! Now Available $0.99 or Free on KU!

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Haven’t started this explosive series yet?
Find the first book, Lovelock Ones on Amazon!

A naturally immune girl. A genetically modified boy. A search for a cure that may cost them everything…
FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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An avid runner and Georgia native, Tricia now lives with her family and four-legged friends in Colorado. She believes that magic infuses every aspect of our lives, whether it is the magic of falling in love, discovering a new passion, a beautiful sunset, or a book that transports us to another world. You can find all her titles from contemporary romance and fantasy, to dystopian fiction at www.triciacopeland.com.

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Lovelock Ones by Tricia Copeland (Book Showcase)

A naturally immune girl. A genetically modified boy. A search for a cure that may cost them everything…

Fifteen-year-old Jema Walker would do anything to protect her sibling. But she never imagined they’d be facing another global flu pandemic. Sent to a remote desert location for safety, Jema is horrified when her sister contracts the deadly virus.

Caught in a conflict of impossible choices, Jema teams up with a specially bred eighteen-year-old boy to find a remedy. But when they’re forced to go rogue and abandon their community, she fears the ruling adults only want them for their uniquely protected DNA.

Can the duo hunt down an antidote before they fall victim to ruthless experiments?

Lovelock Ones is the first book in the action-packed Lovelock YA dystopian science fiction series. If you like bold heroines, strong heroes, and post-apocalyptic settings, then you’ll love Tricia Copeland’s thrilling fight for survival.

Buy Lovelock Ones to battle an unforgiving authority today!

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Part Two: Bred One

Chapter 1 – Troy

“I’m never going to get this.” I let the bow fall to my side.

“Mark.” Jema used my Lovelock name. “I’ve been doing this for ten years. You’re not going to be perfect in a couple of months. It’s muscle memory, just like with football. You’ll get it.”

We’d been practicing for almost three months, both shooting and adapting to our community names. I called her Cleo about sixty percent of the time and hit the center target only one in ten.

“But for you it’s like breathing, Cleo.” I forced out her new name, trying to make the switch in my psyche. She would always be Jema to me.

“Have you never had to work at anything?”

“Yeah, this.” I held up the bow and arrow.

She kicked at the sand under her feet. “Maybe I’m not a good teacher. I just remember how my dad taught me. Think about it like throwing a football. You aim and then release, right?” Cocking her arm back, she faked a throw.

I dropped the bow. “If you put your arms around me like this.” I took her hands and wound them around my waist, so our lips were inches apart. Even in the dim light, I could see her cheeks flush. I loved feeling the warmth from her face. One day I would get up the courage to kiss her again.

Backing away, I lifted the bow and drew the string and arrow to my ear. “Twenty more and then we’ll run.”

“Might help if you use your night goggles like the rest of us.” Her voice trailed off as she walked away.

Swish. I let the arrow fly and fitted another on the string until my quiver emptied. I jogged to collect the arrows and turned to scan the area for Jema. I grabbed a bag and headed to her. “Commander Butler will be happy.” I held the open sac out to her.

“It’s a big one. It will have to hold him till we’re back.”

“You’d think he’d get tired of these.” I synched the bag closed.

“He loves rabbit.”

We walked to the blacktop, and I set the bow on top of her catch. Bumping her shoulder, I faced into the wind. “You ready for this?”

“You beating me again? Never.”

“No, tomorrow.” I pumped my knees up and down in place a few times.

“Yep.” She started a slow jog beside me.

“Not nervous?”

“Always nervous. I hate that it has to be a different place every time.”

“Yeah, and this is the farthest west we’ve been since our marrow run.” I shook my head, clearing the image of the dead soldiers from my brain.

“I do not like that the rendezvous is half an hour from the border.”

“Butler says they’re tightening security.”

Beside me, Jema’s shoulders trembled. “I feel like General Zhou is waiting for us at Port Orford.”

“Yeah, I can see him sitting at your kitchen table, wondering where you went.” I elbowed her, and she jumped to stay in stride.

“Fine. Whatever. Make fun of my nightmares.”

“At least you don’t dream about punching the commander every night.”

Hitting the one-mile mark, my body slid into the familiar rhythm. I watched Jema out of the corner of my eye. She’d become comfortable with our pace after three months of training. Thinking back to our first days in exile, I chuckled at how I pushed her to run. After our rogue mission, we switched to a night work schedule with the rest of the security and supply teams. Waking at 1600 every evening, we ate supper with the community and started our workday. The acquisitions training included physical conditioning, weapons drills, tactical maneuver and psychological warfare study.

Even though the other supply teams switched out, Cmdr. Butler sent Jema and me on each of the last two monthly restocking runs. The next supply run was scheduled for the next day, and we were, again, on the roster. I think Butler tried to keep us busy, so we didn’t plan any tangent missions. Besides being hungry all the time and the lack of friends, cave life wasn’t too horrible, considering marshal law had been issued in the states. At least they’d upped our food portions after we each lost four pounds the first month. Still, it’d taken another month to get my body to stop signaling the need for food.

At the three-mile point, I swirled my finger in the air, and we looped around to head back to the cavern. In addition to the team training, Jema and I ran just before dawn each morning. Then, we showered, and went to sleep just as the rest of the community members started their workday. Mom didn’t like seeing me for only an hour a day, but I appreciated the space from her. Jema and I roomed with the security team, and we had bunks beside each other. This arrangement counted as another plus in my head. Rooming with your mom at eighteen just wasn’t cool.

Nearing the cave we slowed our pace and walked to cool down. Taking in the last few breaths of open air, I snagged the bag with the rabbit and caught Jema’s hand. She smiled and squeezed my fingers, and I wondered if she wanted to kiss me too. But it might’ve made things weird if I pushed beyond our friendship, so I stayed my course.

Inside we dropped the night’s catch in the kitchen, showered, and joined the rest of the community for breakfast. Then, Cmdr. Butler briefed us in the command room, and we made our way to our darkened dorm.

“You ready, Mark?” One of our supply run leads, Garrison, caught up with me in the washroom.

I stood up straight. “Yes, sir.”

“Better not let that brunette mess with your head. I need you sharp tomorrow.” Chuck, the other team leader, pointed at me.

“Cleo? We’re not together. You know that.”

Chuck shook his head. “Commander wants you guys focused.”

I turned to face him. “We are. We’re just friends. We make a good team.”

“It’s more than just your life out there.” Chuck pushed his finger into my shoulder.

I straightened my spine and leaned towards him. “I know, dude.”

“Hey.” Garrison slapped my arm and turned to face Chuck. “Mark and Cleo are solid. They know what they’re doing.”

“Okay, if you say so.” Chuck swung his towel over his shoulder and walked away.

I held my hand out to Garrison. “Thanks, man.”

He clenched my palm. “I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t been on the past two runs with you.”

I hated people doubting my skills. “Well, keep spreading the word. Mark and Cleo are the real deal.”

 

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Devon’s Island by SI Clarke (Book Review)

Other stories will take you to Mars. This one will take you inside the boardroom, the pub, and the bedroom with the people planning the mission.

Gurdeep is an engineer and a soldier. Georgie’s a food scientist. One is pragmatic with a tough outer shell; the other’s an optimist, a person of ideas and compassion. Together, they’re humanity’s last hope for survival.

In the span of a single afternoon, the couple find themselves in charge of planning and establishing a self-sustained colony on Mars. They have 160 slots to fill with experts from all over the world as they set about designing an all-new society with its own government, economy, and culture – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

With 1,114 days until the launch, excitement and tensions run high. Earth’s second chance hangs in the balance. Between strict genetic requirements and the dangers of the dystopian almost-present, will everyone make it to the final countdown?

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

 

Devon’s Island is divided into three Acts; therefore, I will discuss each Act separately. 

 

Act One: This section was mainly dedicated to the recruitment of individuals who’ll be beneficial to the starting process of colonizing Mars. It was more scientific-based. SI Clarke discussed how much air, food, and water humans consume. Clarke also pointed out scientists needed to combat the issue of bone loss in space. Spoiler’s alert! It all had to do with stopping the body’s production of TSG-6. Whether you’re a science geek or not, I think you’ll like Act One.

 

Act Two: This portion of the story dealt with how many people would be needed to populate Mars. It was suggested no men would go, but that idea was promptly shut done. Instead, everyone agreed 160 people would go. (144-150 women and 10-16 men)

They would also take 25,000 genetic material. 

When you are starting a new civilization, life is essential. People die, so babies must be born to continue the preservation of the human race. How the people in charge went about ensuring it was a bit extreme. 

*no one over 36

*sexual orientation meeting

*must sign over reproductive rights

Every step the powers that be took had a purpose. Earth was becoming less habitable, so we must adapt. Goodbye Earth…Hello Mars. 

 

Act Three: And we have liftoff! It takes about a year to travel to Mars. As you would assume, space travel is no life on the beach. I’ve never been to space, but I suspect Chapter 27/Devon depicts life in a spacecraft quite accurately: overwhelming smells and lights, no privacy, always too hot or too cold. 

This portion of Devon’s Island was my favorite. I was fascinated by how much the initial crew was able to accomplish. They had bees, apple trees, and daisies. Heck, they also had coffee plants. You wait, in a few years, I bet the first Starbucks will be opening its doors. 🙂

But in all seriousness, Act Three was the darkest section of the three. Human life on Earth was in chaos. As with Act One & Two, SI Clarke touched upon real-life happenings: mass shootings, hate crimes, terrorism. Clarke was correct, “The world was getting darker by the day.”

Currently, we are working on getting the human race to Mars. However, will we get there before the world implodes, before we turn on each other, kill each other off?

After reading Devon’s Island, I DID NOT wonder if technology would allow us to create a colony on Mars and thrive there. No, I wondered if the human race will survive long enough on Earth to make the trek. Times are becoming more combustible by the hour… how long do we actually have on this planet? Days? Weeks? Years? Or how about hours?

 

And on that note…

Good job, SI Clarke! Love the story and the section titled –> It’s Science, Bitches. 

 

Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score: ❤❤❤❤

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A Crown in Time by Jennifer Macaire (Book Showcase)

Introducing TEMPUS U, the brand new time-slip series from Jennifer Macaire. From the far future to the distant past, A CROWN IN TIME is the perfect, action-packed read for fans of Jodi Taylor.
 
Since it was perfected in 2900, time travel has been reserved for an elite, highly trained few. However, on certain occasions, a Corrector is needed to rectify a mistake in the past.
Do your job well, and you’ll go down in history. Fail, and you will be erased from Time . . .

 

The first in an exciting new time-slip series, from the author of the action-packed Time for Alexander series, Jennifer Macaire. A CROWN IN TIME will have you on the edge of your seat from the very first page . . .
 
In the far future, a convicted criminal is given a chance at redemption. The Corrector Program at Tempus University is sending Isobel back in time, to the year 1270, to rewrite history.

Her mission? To save the crown of France.

If she follows the Corrector’s Handbook everything should run smoothly. But soon, Isobel finds herself accompanying a hot-headed young noble on his way to fight the infidel in Tunis: a battle Isobel knows is fated to be lost.

Isobel must fulfil her duty, knowing she can never return to her time, knowing one wrong move can doom the future, or doom her to be burned as a witch . . .

Praise for Jennifer Macaire’s Alexander series:
‘Fascinating . . . jam-packed with adventure and colour.’ Jodi Taylor
 

 
 
 
 
~~Excerpt ~~

 
Jean was already perched on the railing, his feet drumming excitedly on the wood, his eyes glowing. ‘Look!’ he cried, pointing toward shore. ‘The Saracens have arrived!’

In the indistinct light of dawn, I could make out a huge crowd of men and horses milling on the beach. I looked to the right. Another small army was camped on the bluff overlooking the harbour. On the left, tents were scattered across the land, and I could clearly see the glitter of light on the metal spearheads.

My head swam and I gripped the wooden railing until splinters dug into my palms. Unexpectedly, my stomach heaved, and I retched over the side of the ship.

‘Are you all right?’ Jean hopped off his perch and put his arm over my shoulders.

‘It’s just nerves.’ I wiped my mouth with a shaking hand. A shiver of fatigue washed through me, so I sat down on the deck.

‘There’s a whole shipload of sick people,’ said Jean conversationally. ‘They’ve all got swamp fever.’

‘Oh great,’ I said. ‘Malaria. That’s just what we need. I suppose King Louis is going to attack the Saracens?’

‘He’s planning to do that, yes.’ Jean’s face fell. ‘Our ship won’t be fighting, though. We’re going to retreat a way back and keep the king’s ship covered.’

‘That sounds like a sensible idea, don’t you think?’

‘The knights have been getting ready. I can hear the clanging of armour coming over the water. The sound carries well in the early morning. The horses have been kicking the sides of the ships.’

The noise of iron-shod hooves striking the wooden planks was distinct. The knights must be the first ones off. The ship crews, protected from arrows by large wooden panels, manoeuvred the ships backwards towards the beach. The ships carrying the mounted soldiers were simply hollow vessels that the horses surged out of in a tight group down two enormous gangplanks. There were thirteen of these ships, one having sunk on the way to Sardinia.

Our fleet boasted ten of another type of ship, designed for the archers with towers and shields. These, including the king’s own archers on their own special ship, would cover the cavalry’s flanks. The ships holding foot soldiers bobbed around the edges of the battle, searching for an opening to land.

The full force of the king’s army landed that afternoon and drove the Saracens out of the harbour without much trouble. The knights galloped their heavy chargers out of the bowels of the ships onto dry land, the archers rained arrows on the hillside and the foot soldiers charged gamely up the beach.

The Saracens retreated toward Carthage, their fiery horses galloping with their tails held high in the air like flowing flags.

Jean, Charles, and I cheered.
 
‘What happens next?’ asked Charles, his face pink with excitement.

‘We set up camp.’ Jean sounded morose, disappointed to have missed the action.

‘There will be other battles,’ I said, just as gloomily.

‘We’d best get our things in order if we’re leaving the ship,’ said Charles, ever practical.

I looked out over the water, toward the king’s ship floating so close to ours. All the flags waved jauntily in the hot breeze, and the king sat under his awning and waved his thin white hand at the soldiers on shore. His face was serene, joyful with the painless victory. However, it wasn’t a victory, really. The Saracens had simply wanted to see exactly what kind of an army the French king had brought. Now they knew.

 
 
 
 
Jennifer Macaire lives in France with her husband, three children, & various dogs & horses. She loves cooking, eating French chocolate, growing herbs and flowering plants on her balcony, and playing golf. She grew up in upstate New York, Samoa, and the Virgin Islands. She graduated from St. Peter and Paul high school in St. Thomas and moved to NYC where she modeled for five years for Elite. She went to France and met her husband at the polo club. All that is true. But she mostly likes to make up stories. 
 

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