Click the banner for #WyrdAndWonder to find all my lovely posts being featured this 2nd Year of my co-hosted Fantasy event! As I’ve been updating my TBR post with links to each review I’ve been sharing and/or special post interconnected to my readings of Fantasy, Paranormal & Speculative stories this month!
Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “Dragonkyn” direct from the publisher Sweetwater Books (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.
Why I love DRAGONS:
I have had a soft spot in my heart for dragons for a very long time – I haven’t always sought out #dragonfiction to read because I have particular interests in how I am hoping a story about #dragons will go – therefore, when I spied ‘Dragonkyn’ arriving on a blog tour this Winter, I thought I’d take a chance on a new author. My love of #LelandDragons is quite apparent in the twitterverse, as I have extensively spoken about how much I love Jackie Gamber’s Leland Dragons series (see also this Overview post) – the bar was set quite high indeed! What I love the most about stories involving dragons is the heart-center of focus being on dragonkind and if they interact with other species, including humans or creatures similar to humans; as every author has their own vision for where Dragon Fiction can take them visually through world-building.
I even like stories where dragons and humans share DNA – or where there are a new generation of a hybrid species of shapeshifters of whom are part dragon and part human. It simply depends on how the context of the story is told and how the undertone of the narrative is approached which will sway me one way or the other about the presentation of the story. For YA stories directly, I am hoping for an uplift of narrative wherein a hearty adventure and a dramatic story could be inserted to tell a stimulating fantastical story overall. The only time I feel the most disappointed is when the tone of a YA novel turns darker than midnight – where there isn’t as much light flickering through the core of the story’s heart as I’d prefer or if the circumstances turn from dramatic to beyond dire without any hope of turning back round again. In essence, I look for a balance between Epic Fantasy world-building, strong character driven narrative, and a good back-story on the fantastical creatures and the humanoid characters who walk alongside them (and/or any other species selected for supporting cast). When I looked towards ‘Dragonkyn’ I was hoping I might find a new author to follow and see if this might develop into a series I could appreciate reading.
Share what motivates your own bookish heart to dig into #dragonfiction in the threads below! I’d be delighted to hear what draws your eye towards this niche market within Fantasy!
Marc Mondragon is just an average teenager who's always getting in trouble or crushing on the pretty girl in school. When strange things begin happening to him, Marc is thrust into a new world where dragons are no longer just in fairy tales. Suddenly with new friends and new enemies, his very survival depends on his ability to use a new source of power that gives magic to and connects all dragons - the invisible fire within him.
Nathan Smith Jones graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in English Literature. The fourth of eight children, he is the author of the Children’s book, “The Boy Who Ate America,” and several other novels and screenplays. He lives with his wife and five children in Utah.
Acquired Digital Audiobook by: I am a new blog tour hostess with Audiobookworm Promotions wherein I have the opportunity to receive audiobooks for review or adoption (reviews outside of organised blog tours) and host guest features on behalf of authors and narrators alike. I started hosting for Audiobookworm Promotions at the end of  during “The Cryptic Lines” tour wherein I became quite happily surprised how much I am now keen on listening to books in lieu of reading them in print. My journey into audiobooks was prompted by a return of my chronic migraines wherein I want to offset my readings with listening to the audio versions.
I received a complimentary audiobook copy of “Halfway Hunted” via the publicist at Audiobookworm Promotions (of whom was working directly with the author Terry Maggert) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.
On the heart tug of emotional angst stemming out of the cliffhanger from Halfway Bitten:
In case you’ve missed my full ruminations on behalf of the first novel in this wonderfully witchy series, please direct your mouse to Halfway Dead!
When Halfway Bitten concluded – I had mixed emotions. In some ways, I had trouble sorting out my thoughts because I couldn’t quite say I had the same reaction to the second story as I did the first: wicked sweet admiration for the story in whole. No. I honestly had a difficult takeaway, as portions of the story felt ‘off’ to me somehow, something I have sorted out how to explain, if you read the ‘postscript’ on my review.
The hardest part about the ending is how it ends – to be direct, this is the second time I felt overcome by the ending of a novel. The first time was during a read-fest of Lady Darby, of which sadly ended with me unable to resolve my feelings in order to read the adorable pocket sized fifth installment. (see also post) By the time I resolved my emotional angst, I was facing a real-life medical crisis. (see also post) In this particular case, it was simply emotionally gutting – such a sad conclusion and yet, a heroic gesture for someone’s beloved. Wulfric grew on me – as he didn’t warm to me initially – it was through his love for Carlie and the overtures of sincerity he made started me to think about another vampire I liked (ie. Angel; Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Angel series)
Each of the Halfway Witchy stories are progressively moving deeper into the heart of Carlie’s personal growth and the ways in which her life is exponentially complicated through her experiences as a white witch. Maggert threads a hearty threading of realism into the backbone of the series – there are happy moments, sure, but overall, this is a cheeky satire with high octane drama. It’s set in a world just out of the view of our own – if you kept the veil of the supernatural away from your eyes, you could say this is ‘present day, 21st Century’, too. It’s texture of familiarity is enhanced by how Maggert etches into his narrative exchanges of cultural and tradition Americans would readily recognise. This is decidedly American – not just in how he chooses to write his characters’ unique personalities or their delivery of their lines, but rather, how the story is told. You can perceive a lens of grounding out of the author’s own imagination and living memories whilst countered against the unseen and very dangerous supernatural world.
This is why I am so genuinely addicted to this series – you feel like brewing up a warm cuppa and settling in for returning back to a place that feels so much like home. Similar to Stars Hollow if you will. Or any small towne you feel you can cosy up inside and be recognised as a resident rather than as a passing through outsider. This is why despite the cliffhanger giving my heart a lurched out motion of ‘how could this happen!?’ I felt Maggert left in just enough Hope for things to turn around and/or have restitution given down the road a bit in the next installments to where I could handle moving forward. Unlike my feelings on behalf of the recent episode of NCIS: LA (see this thread of a rant of mine) which pushed the envelope too far for me to even consider rational and plausible in regards of ‘where’ a story-line in a family tv series should go.
As an aside, Lady Darby’s story-line crushed my soul, NCIS: LA disturbed my heart and disillusioned my loyalty to a series I’ve followed since JAG (ie: all 3x NCIS are spins of the original) and Halfway Witchy dealt with a twist of fate in such a better way. If you’re going to give a reader (or a viewer) a heart-wreck of a cliffhanger or turning of tides, take after Mr Magget. And, yes… I am going to be reading Lady Darby – after you nearly lose your father to a series of TIAs, even a crushed soul can be repaired. Or in my case, a severe case of amnesia occurred because something more important was hitting my reality. NCIS: LA is falling into the category of Castle & Downton Abbey; not everything can be forgiven. Then again, I boycotted Angel after S2 for similar reasons.
Welcome to Halfway; where the waffles are golden, the moon is silver, and magic is just around every corner.
A century old curse is broken, releasing Exit Wainwright, an innocent man trapped alone in time. Lost and in danger, he enlists Carlie, Gran, and their magic to find the warlock who sentenced him to a hundred years of darkness. The hunter becomes the hunted when Carlie's spells awaken a cold-blooded killer intent on adding another pelt to their gruesome collection: hers.
But the killer has never been to Halfway before, where there are three unbreakable rules:
1. Don't complain about the diner's waffles.
2. Don't break the laws of magic.
3. Never threaten a witch on her home turf.
Can Carlie solve an ancient crime, defeat a ruthless killer and save the love of her life from a vampire's curse without burning the waffles?
Come hunt with Carlie, and answer the call of the wild.
Notation on Cover Art Design: charmed by two, indifferent towards a third
Unlike my admiration for the first two covers, the third cover was slightly less inclined to be liked by me due to how ‘blood’ was the prime feature of the artwork. I’m not a girl who likes vampires or werewolves – not generally – I do have my exceptions (all girls do) but if you were to cast a wide net about the stories of the supernatural and/ paranormal suspense in general – I’m just not the kind of reader / viewer who digs a lot of er, blood. Unless it’s a medical drama – not that I can handle watching or reading medical dramas anymore – in my teenage years I could filter real life from fictional; as an adult, I’ve lived too many years with medical crises to care to always be locked into a soul-wretch of a fictional one. I even wanted to share the promo badges attached to this blog tour – as some of the quotes were my personal favourites – but again. The ‘blood’ is just too .. er, ick for me!? I always par down the blood – my imagination is tamer than most and more expansive in other regards – in true essence, I dial down the gore. Not that I would consider Maggert’s fiction ‘gory’ no, it’s still within what I consider ‘Cosy Horror’ or even ‘Horror-Lite’ but.. yes. This cover just didn’t win me over. I sort of wished for the continuity of the marker tattoos. That was something wicked original now discarded.
About Terry Maggert
Left-handed. Father of an apparent nudist. Husband to a half-Norwegian. Herder of cats and dogs. Lover of pie. I write books. I've had an unhealthy fascination with dragons since the age of-- well, for a while. Native Floridian. Current Tennessean. Location subject to change based on insurrection, upheaval, or availability of coffee. Nine books and counting, with no end in sight. You've been warned.
Hallo dear hearts! I am pleased to be a part of the blog tour hosted directly by Month9Books for a new release of #DiverseLit featuring a cross-cultural romance between an Irish bloke and an Indian lass! I’ve had the pleasure of interacting a bit with the author via Twitter leading up to my tour stop – whilst being caught up in the pre-release excitement of having a new book begin it’s travels within the book world. Always an exciting time for authors & readers alike – what drew me into wanting to host this blog tour is the opportunity to talk to the author about her characters, the story-line itself and to help celebrate an author whose writing an #ownvoices release.
I have always read diversely, ever since I was a young girl, however, a lot has changed in publishing in the last several years – where #WeNeedDiverseBooks has become a movement I’ve been a part of since it’s initial Twitter storm of tweets supporting diversity and equality in literature to where we now can celebrate authors like Ms Patel, who are writing narratives from their own cultural heritage and background whilst being celebrated through the #ownvoices movement as well. Literature is quite an exciting time right now – but what moves me to the most to read stories, are the heart and soul centred stories where we truly get to enter into the lives of the characters through an emotional connective thread which gives us entrance into their lives.
As I read the premise behind Soulmated, I felt the author had a wonderful window into telling a story a lot of us could relate too, and would love to read. The fact that it’s a cross-cultural Romance with the added benefit for being inclusive of the Urban Fantasy arc of elements wherein the supernatural bits are interspersed with the lives of the characters, you feel as if your about to enter into an exciting story which has a fast pace of alighting inside your imagination.
Eighteen-year-old Liam Whelan, an Irish royal empath, has been searching for his elusive soulmate. The rare union will cement his family’s standing in empath politics and afford the couple legendary powers, while also making them targets of those seeking to oust them.
Laxshmi Kapadia, an Indian-American high school student from a traditional family, faces her mother’s ultimatum: Graduate early and go to medical school, or commit to an arranged marriage.
When Liam moves next door to Laxshmi, he’s immediately and inexplicably drawn to her. In Liam, Laxshmi envisions a future with the freedom to follow her heart.
Liam’s father isn’t convinced Laxshmi is “The One” and Laxshmi’s mother won’t even let her talk to their handsome new neighbor. Will Liam and Laxshmi defy expectations and embrace a shared destiny? Or is the risk of choosing one’s own fate too great a price for the soulmated?