Book Review: Magic of Thieves

Magic of Thieves by C. Greenwood

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I’ve given this book four stars simply because it is part of a series, and as it leaves us with a cliffhanger for an ending, I do believe that this book told the story that needed to be told. However, several issues kept me from giving it a 5-star.

One, the title is extremely misleading. For a book called Magic of Thieves, I’m expecting, well, magic. The only amazing amount of magic used in this novel is done by her parents in the very beginning. Yes, Ilan has that magical emotional connection to the thief who took her in, but she never casts a true spell.

Two, I know it is part of a series, so I’m expecting a bit of a cliffhanger ending, but the one we were left with was a bit of a letdown. I feel that the author could have continued for a few more chapters, told the rest of the story, then left a small cliffhanger to make us want to read on to the next book. With the way it was left, I have questions that I would love to continue reading to get the answers to, but the ending was handled in such a way that I really don’t want to read on to get another ending that is just as much of a letdown in the second book.

Three, I feel that Ilan and her priest friend could have been developed so much more. I wanted to see more of them, but every time either of them performed any action, it felt like the same action they did before just rehashed into new words.

If you want to pay for the entire series, I do believe that this story could be an awesome read, but the first book could have been handled a bit better.


Book Review: Left Alive #1

Left Alive #1 by Jeremy Laszlo

My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

First off, this book is one that is a bit outside my preferred reading. Not because of genre–I simply don’t usually read books that are written in the first person point-of-view. When I do read books written in this point-of-view, they have to be tightly written or I find myself putting them down. This one was not as tightly written as I prefer, but I did push through it simply because I’m a writer, too, and I would like to think that people will give my books the same consideration.

A few things I noticed that really made the book seem hum-drum to me was that it really needed a good, thorough editing by someone who does that type of thing for a living. In the first 38% of the book (I read it on the Kindle), the main character essentially thought the same cluster of input about his wife and two daughters about every other paragraph. I almost put the book down, and I’ll be honest, I did close it out on my Kindle and go read some short stories to give myself a break from it.

The other major issue I noticed is that all the trees and plants are dead. With all those people breathing, the world would be full of carbon dioxide pretty quickly without our natural carbon dioxide scrubbers going through photosynthesis. I’m assuming that some survived somewhere, but it would not be enough to sustain an entire planet of people, and there still seem to be a lot of people.

It had great potential for an excellent dystopian novel, and I do believe that if Laszlo had gone through a few more edits, it could have been a 5-star novel. It just needed a bit more polish.


Book Review: Sworn to Conflict

Sworn To Conflict by Terah Edun

My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

I have read the first three books of this series this week, so I will review this book for itself and how it fits in with the entire series.

The writing has gotten much better since the first book. I did not find myself stumbling through sentences and paragraphs anywhere as much as I did on the first novel of this series. There were still grammar errors and sentences that needed some work, but on the whole, it was much better and much easier to read.

Ciardis seemed more likable in this novel. She did not seem as stuck up or as snobbish as she had been in previous novels, and I found myself wanting to know her more. This led to a fault I found with the book. It did not matter how stupid she acted, everyone loved her. It got a bit grating after a while. I wanted someone to reach up and smack her a few times, especially when it came to the relationship between her and Sebastion. They apparently do not know how to talk in this fantasy world. Half of their problems would be solved if they just cleared the air between them. Everyone loving the heroine despite everything she did is one reason why I took a star away on this review. A heroine has to have at least one person hate her. It could be the kitchen grunt for all I care, but someone has to hate her.

The other star was lost due to plot twists. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good plot twist, but I felt like I was on a jerky roller coaster. Every time I would pass a plot twist and almost have myself settled in the story again, another one would hit and I would be yanked upside down. I could not get and keep my bearings most of the time, and it made it quite difficult to stick with the story.

I forced myself through the first three of these to give a budding author the chance, but I think I am done with this series.

Book Review: Wolves

I Bring the Fire: Part I Wolves by C. Gockel

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I love any story that focuses on Loki or Thor, and this one seemed to take a new angle on Loki, so I gave it a shot. It’s a good read. It kept me entertained for an afternoon and I could not put it down for long before I found myself picking it back up again.

I loved the Loki angle. This version of Loki reminds me more of a kender from the Dragonlance series than as some evil-doer like they make him out to be in the movies. When things go wrong, it’s not because he meant for it to happen that way. Everything he touches just falls apart. It’s like he’s cursed with bad luck that spreads. He does something in innocence and goodwill, and it backfires.

I did not like the Amy character though. She’s well-rounded, but not completely believable. Loki loves spewing sexual innuendos at her that she never seems to get, as though she were completely virginal and had never so much as cracked a health book to the sexual education section, but she’s had sex before. No one is that naive. Also, as a reader, I could see what Loki was up to probably before the author wanted me to know, but Amy could not see it when it was staring her straight in the face.

I could not give it five stars because of Amy. She needed more work, and because of that, I found it hard to read the book in one go. I had to put it down and give myself a break from her before I could come back and start reading again. The story is good, and I’ve bought the second in the series in hope that Amy becomes someone better.


Book Review: After the Ending

After The Ending by Lindsey Fairleigh

My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

For the story and it’s concept, this was a good read. Everyone is hit with a killer virus, and for those that survive, it left you a little present–it mutated you. I could get behind that. It was plausible and definitely possible because every virus and bacteria reacts to the human body differently.

What I could not get behind is that even after “The Ending,” there was still power and internet for a really, really long time. Seriously? The virus struck fast, but it did not strike that fast. All of that stuff would have been shut down for public safety reasons long before everyone died out.

And really, it just bugged the crap out of me that Dani’s love of her life is dead in the next room, and yeh, by this point, she should realize that calling an ambulance is not going to do anything for him and he would likely be sitting there for a really long time, but that’s as far as her concern truly goes. She gets a drink of water and parks her behind on the couch to email her best friend. Wait! What? The entire book is like this. They all seem so detached from what is going on around them that I could not get attached to what was happening.

Not once did I really feel scared for the characters because I knew that as soon as it was all over, they were either going to go have sex with the horndog brother of their best friend, or they were going to sit down and text each other all about it. It happened, I was there. I did not need to read a texted recap of it.

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