Tag Archives: Fantasy

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey by Gordon Doherty (@GordonDoherty) – Review

Next up on David’s Book Blurg Is Assassin’s Creed Odyssey by Gordon Doherty.

Here’s the blurb

Greece, 5th century BCE. Kassandra is a mercenary of Spartan blood, sentenced to death by her family, cast out into exile. Now she will embark on an epic journey to become a legendary hero – and uncover the truth about her mysterious lineage.

Review

Gordon Doherty fast became a favourite author of mine while reading his Legionary series. When I heard he was on board with an Assassin’s Creed book I felt two emotions, firstly happiness that Gordon’s work would reach a wider audience and also apprehension… I’m not really a gamer..would I still enjoy the book?

Well I needn’t have worried..Gordon smashed it again!

This tale follows Kassandra who as a child was cast out by her family.. she went against the gods and for that there is no forgiveness…all she cared about was saving little Alexios..her sibling..only for her parents to abandon her.

Years have passed and we find Kassandra using her Spartan skills to get by..she’s a mercenary and for the right price she will sort your problems out for you.

From the off you can tell that while Kassandra needs money..she still has a few morals left. This is confirmed as soon as we meet Phoibe..A little girl Kassandra has decided to take care off..if she doesn’t no one else will. The relationship between these two was a joy to follow.

The plot is well-developed and we have a nice build-up for the character as we see her skills put to use. Tasked with using her talents to obtain a treasure little does she know it’s really just a test and the past won’t stay hidden for long.. it’s going to hit hard.

From one lead to another Kassandra sets out on a path to learn about herself and the fateful night she was lost to her parents.. little does she know that all is not as she first thought.

Gordon Doherty gives us twist after twist and effortlessly paints a picture of Kassandra’s life and the places she visits. This might be an adaptation of a game but Doherty manages to give the written word depth and emotion that no game has been able to give me in the past. It’s written in such a way that young adults and old alike will love it with the perfect amount of detail to keep his diehard fans happy but also suck in new readers without overwhelming them.

I really think Gordon managed to put his own style of writing into an established series which is no mean feat.

Overall Assassin’s Creed Odyssey earns it’s place on my bookshelf..fast paced, exciting and vivid.

I’m always impressed when I read Gordon’s work and he didn’t let me down with Odyssey.. I loved it!

My rating – 5/5 Stars

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads

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Marik’s Way by Nick Brown (@randomrome) – Review

Next up for review is Marik’s Way by Nick Brown.

Here’s the blurb.

Genre – Fantasy

My rating – 5/5 Stars

Stay out of trouble.
Though this is Marik’s mantra, he rarely seems able to follow it. Having escaped a brutal civil war in his native South, the former soldier now roams the distant North, trying to forget his past and forge some kind of future. Marik suspects he is paying the price for the moment of weakness that caused him to flee his comrades and family and everything he knew. Because however hard he tries, intrigue and danger are never far away …
After an unlikely series of events see him employed as a bodyguard, Marik survives a terrifying shipwreck and washes up on a distant shore. He finds himself in the Salka Delta, an isolated region of islands and marshes. Here, a mercenary named Reverrik has enslaved the local people and Marik is soon recruited by a tiny band of rebels. As well as traitors and outlandish creatures, he also faces Hammerhand, a giant enforcer feared by all.
Staying out of trouble is never easy.

Review

I’m familiar with the authors work so when I noticed a new fantasy novel out it was a no-brainer to buy a copy.

Marik’s got a past and that’s exactly where he wants to leave it..the past.

As a former soldier there’s only a few work options open to him but he doesn’t have the best of luck.. trouble seems to find him no matter what.

Some unfortunate events lead Marik to a point where he finally thinks things are starting to look up for him..boy was he wrong..he only goes and get himself shipwrecked..

He survives against the odds .. time to relax you’d think? No chance.

Marik finds himself in a small village.. the more he looks the more he notices the strange looks..people here clearly don’t have much and they seem to be a little on edge at times..but why?

A mercenary named Reverrik has the people scared witless..many have died at his command and others enslaved to do his bidding.

As much as Marik doesn’t want to get involved he just can’t help himself.

From here Marik sets out on a journey to meet up with a known band of rebels.. the plan.. take down Reverrik forever.. but not everyone is on the same side..

Marik’s Way is a fast paced, action packed fantasy adventure full of twists. The author manages to paint a vivid image of the events that play out, at times bloody and gruesome..it’s an epic ride so perfectly paced you can’t help but get sucked in.

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads

Elji And The Galrass – By Colin Sinclair – Review

Next up for review is Elji and the Galrass book one in the Essence Sagas series by Colin Sinclair.

Here’s the blurb

Pages – 250

Genre -Fantasy/Science Fiction

Elji, a boy from a village outside the city of Mehem discovers a “Galrass” a tool usually wielded only by those who understand its power. Perhaps it was left for him to find or perhaps it was just a random happening?

The Galrass embroils him in a struggle he never expected to be part of or even imagined existed. Dregar, a being from a different planet and galaxy ‘feels’ the boys interruption of the universal essence and takes him under his wing and so his journey begins.

Friendships are made and lost and many lives must be put in danger to usher the civilization into its rightful place among the Universal essence. Will Elji fulfill his potential and help save his world or will it fall into darkness?

Review

Elji is a young boy whose life is about to be turned upside down when he finds a strange stone. This is no ordinary stone though..it’s a Galrass which has unimaginable power.

Dregar senses Elji and his Galrass and takes him under his wing. He’s not the only one who has sensed the presence of the Galrass and we learn of beings, The Four, from far away who watch and influence the development of other worlds to one day see them reach the same enlightenment they have reached. They don’t wish to push a civilization before it’s ready so their influence is subtle and over many years.

We also learn of a dark power that is growing, Framin, once part of The Four now falling…

With one of The Four turned to darkness and one, Ichancha lost years ago this leaves just two to influence pivotal pieces on the chessboard to ensure Framin’s plot doesn’t come to fruition.

These chess pieces turn out to be very specific individuals, influenced slightly at times by the remaining members of The Four, Elgred and Charina. They assemble for one final battle.. or is it?

There’s twists and turns as we learn the true capabilities of The Four and Elji and I found the plot quite riveting at times.

For me the tale is fun and interesting but with the sheer number of characters and the fact the tale is so fast paced there’s a lot to take on board. I would have liked to see the progression of the tale be a little slower at times so more time could be spent on developing the characters so they become ingrained in your mind. I just didn’t feel like I got to know the characters as well as I would have liked.

Overall I enjoyed the book, the characters were interesting, the plot well thought out and those twists when thrown in really did make me go ooo as I dreamt up the possibilities myself. It’s was well written and clear to read so It’s a great start to what could be a fun series if developed well. I’d be interested to see where this goes.

My Raring – 3/5 Stars

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

My thanks go to the author for the chance to read/review their work.

The Druid by Steven A. Mckay (@SA_McKay)- Review

Today i’m reviewing The Druid by author Steven A. Mckay. Here’s the blurb

Genre : Fantasy/Historical
Pages : 290

Northern Britain, AD430

A land in turmoil. A village ablaze. A king’s daughter abducted.

In the aftermath of a surprise attack Dun Buic lies in smoking ruins and many innocent villagers are dead. As the survivors try to make sense of the night’s events the giant warrior-druid, Bellicus, is tasked with hunting down the raiders and thwarting their dark purpose.

With years of training in the old ways, two war-dogs at his side, and unsurpassed skill with a longsword, Bellicus’s quest will take him on a perilous journey through lands still struggling to cope with the departure of the Roman legions.

Meanwhile, amongst her brutal captors the little princess Catia finds an unlikely ally, but even he may not be able to avert the terrible fate King Hengist has in store for her.

This, the first volume in a stunning new series from the bestselling author of Wolf’s Head, explores the rich folklore and culture of post-Roman Britain, where blood-sacrifice, superstition and warfare were as much a part of everyday life as love, laughter and song.

As Saxon invaders and the new Christian religion seek to mould the country for their own ends one man will change the course of Britain’s history forever. . .

. . . THE DRUID.

Review

You should know who Steven A. McKay is..author of the Forest Lord series based around one of the best historical figures ever in my mind Robin Hood..after what seemed like forever the end of the series came hard like a punch to the gut.. I needed more.. but could the author ever live up to the expectations set..well lets see.

The Druid is a brand new tale for the author, this tale follows Bellicus. Religion is changing but Druids still hold some power..and as such when the King’s daughter is taken he sets out to rescue her. What he doesn’t know is that every corner he will be tested to his limits.

There’s twists and turns as Bellicus deals with the changes in the world around him. He’s been closed off abit in his own little bubble so he taken aback when people don’t give him the respect his station once demanded.. it’s doesn’t help that he’s a giant of a man..only his weapon makes him stand out as the Druid and as soon as people see it you seem them quickly decide to help the man out..for the most part.

He’s hot on the trail from the start but there’s numerous challenges ahead but Bellicus can handle everything..well at least that’s what he thinks..he either wins or will go down fighting.

The plot was good but I just know the author has more to give. It just proves McKay has a natural talent for storytelling, that he’s able to change the focus of his tales after such a well-developed series like The Forest Lord series. He still manages to give us a tale where there’s a clear ending but leaves so much open left to develop if he wishes. An ending like that just has me desperate for more.

Overall I thought it was well written, It flowed well and it seemed effortless..at no point did it feel like the story lost its way or that things didn’t make sense..it just worked.

Being such a fast paced action tale where the heat is on from the start it’s a wonder the author managed to develop the characters at all but he managed it perfectly.. at one point I even started to really like one of the kidnappers..that’s how easy McKay manages to control your thoughts.

Cracking read and a nice change from the authors previous work. Plenty of life left in the tale to see this develop further and I’d love to see how it continues.

5* .. I can’t give it any less.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

From the Shadows of the Owl Queen’s Court by Benedict Patrick (@benedictpaddy)- Review

So next up for review is From the Shadows of the Owl Queen’s Court by Benedict Patrick, here’s the blurb.

Genre – Dark Fantasy
Pages – 329 pages
My Rating – 5/5 Stars

If you value your life, stay out of the forest.

As a captive of the Owl Queen’s Court, Nascha’s life has always been one knife’s edge away from disaster. But when she is threatened for nothing more than the colour of her hair, Nascha attempts the unthinkable: escape through the dreaded Magpie King’s forest.

Hunted by sharp toothed and sharper witted foxfolk, and hated by all for being a witch, Nascha fears herself doomed until she joins forces with a mysterious young man. With him she finds a glimmer of hope, even as her own unpredictable powers flicker into existence.

But hope is fleeting.

The forces arrayed against her are insurmountable, and Nascha soon comes to realise that pursuit of her own freedom will come at a greater cost to the forest. As the darkness closes in around them, Nascha is forced to ask:

At what price is she willing to purchase her life?

How dearly is she willing to sell it?

Review

From the Shadows of the Owl Queen’s Court is the newest book in the Yarnsworld series by Benedict Patrick and it just keeps getting better and better.

What really sets this series apart from others for me is that it’s so unique and the writing style, switching focus from plot to folklore tales chapter to chapter really does keep you hooked. It’s really great to see the folklore tales and the plot merge as the tale unfolds to give you a complete story that blows you away.

In this tale we meet Nascha and Bradan..one way or another their lives will never be the same. Nascha is a slave in the owl court but there’s more to her than meets the eye..more than she knows herself..a hidden secret just waiting to come out.

Bradan..well he’s down on his luck a bit..he’s wants to be a hero..but he’s overshadowed by his father who currently holds the power of the Magpie King..the only problem is he didn’t gain these powers..he took them and as such his mind is slowly being lost to madness. Bradan believes he should continue the line but is he worthy?

The battle of power of the forest is coming when The Lady shows up..she’s been hiding in the shadows for years just waiting to take back what she believes is hers but you can guess the Magpie spirit won’t give up without a fight. As these two forces clash the lives of Bradan and Nascha entwine and things will never be the same again.

I loved the plot, with twists and turns on every page. To say the story gripped me is an understatement. The myths brought to life are so fascinating and that ending just had me focused so much that I could have easily missed my train stop if it hadn’t been the last stop on the line ha.

The characters were strong and developed at a good pace. I liked them and enjoyed reading their story. Each has their own flaws but also inner strength which they must find to overcome the obstacles in their way.

This one is a roller-coaster ride of ups and downs, little connections build..then shatter..build then shatter and you never know where the author will take you..it’s one hell of a ride which I was glad to be on.

Overall this is a dark and vivid tale..it’s like the old fairytales not the Disney style where everything works out in the end..everything has a price..but are you willing to pay the cost?

Another 5* rating from me to Benedict Patrick..these tales hit all the right notes with me!

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

Royalty and Ruin: Modern Magick #5 by Charlotte E. English – Review

Today I’m reviewing book 5 in the Modern Magick series by author Charlotte E. English.

Here’s the blurb

Genre – Fantasy
Pages – 200 pages
My Rating – 5/5 Stars

Fresh from a successful incursion to the Fifth Britain, Ves and Jay are summoned to the Troll Court at Mandridore — and instantly put to work, for Their Majesties have concocted exactly the kind of wild and crazy plan of which Ves approves. Could it, would it, be possible to restore the lost city of Farringale?

Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t, but there’s the tiny problem of how. Who better to dig up the truth than the Society’s most colourful agents? They’re off to Whitmore once more, armed with a long list of questions, two winning smiles (well, three, if you count the Baron’s — and who wouldn’t?) and a certain Dappledok pup. Only, history has a way of being… slippery.

The truth being more complicated than Ves is inclined to hope, the only way to find out what really happened at Farringale is to go back, poke it with a stick, and see what falls out. And try not to die in the process. With her enchanted pipes in tow, a unicorn at her command and three trusty Society allies at her back, what could possibly go wrong?

First of all are you up to date on the series? No? well click the links below to read my reviews for the rest of the series 🙂

The Road to Farringale: Modern Magick, 1

Toil and Trouble: Modern Magick, 2

The Striding Spire: Modern Magick, 3

The Fifth Britain : Modern Magick, 4

Ok so on with the review.

Charlotte E. English for me has always been Queen of the short story. There’s just so much packed into her books and Royalty and Ruin is no different..at 200 pages it’s a quick fun read but it’s such a full tale that it feels like a much longer tale.

We are back with Ves and Jay as they try to protect magic in the world. This time our duo are summoned to the Troll court who require their assistance.

It’s time to head back to Farringale where this adventure started to find out the truth about what happened there. Things still aren’t adding up and Ves is determined to get to the bottom of this one way or another!

Some interesting twists in this one that really starts to tie the books together nicely. Not to give the game away but Ves might just find out why magic is on the decline but can she find a way to save it?

We get more character development during the book and I really enjoyed the growth with the Baron, sometimes he’s just there..you don’t really get much from him..he just keeps himself to himself but in this tale we get to learn more and it does make you think a little differently of him.

A magical fun ride for any fantasy lover. Perfectly paced and with a continually engrossing plot. It just ticks all the boxes for me.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

The Screaming Mummy (Quest Chasers #2) by Thomas & Grace Lockhaven – Review

Title – The Screaming Mummy (Quest Chasers #2)
Author – Grace & Thomas Lockhaven 
Genre – Young Adult/Fantasy
My Rating – 5/5 Stars

Synopsis

The Quest Chasers series, which debuted with the fun, fast, and fantastical Deadly Cavern, returns with the equally enthralling The Screaming Mummy. The evil Ranger has a track record of eliminating children, and he again (along with his creepy sidekicks) has Tommy and Eevie in his sights—this time with greater vengeance.

What sets this series apart from the competition is the loving and humor-laced companionship of Tommy, Eevie, and pal Drew. They rely on each other to solve riddles, wield magic, escape danger, and heal from relentless attacks—physically and emotionally.

The author deftly takes us from warm, quiet moments between friends to harrowing adventures, with the emotional roller coaster ride continuing throughout. Just when you think they’re safe, they’re not, and the closing chapters reveal one stunning twist after the other.

Review

Sometimes I truly believe books written for young adults are just so much better than adult novels. There’s so much freedom with the story as you try to stoke the imagination of your audience.

If you’ve not read The Deadly Cavern yet you should do! it’s fun and fast paced and is very engaging with the reader.

We are back with Tommy & Eevie. They escaped the evil range once but he’s not about to let them get away that easy. Our team grows with the addition of Drew. The three of them need to use all their knowledge to solve the riddles of the past and find a way home.. will they make it out alive this time?

The ending leaves me eagerly awaiting more. The plot is fun, the characters are likable and it’s perfectly written for a young adult who is a fan of fantasy. I dare so it’s perfect for an adult of 33 too :).

Quest Chasers is an intriguing series and I’d love to see how things play out.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon