Book Review: Blackthorne – Clayton W. Snyder

Hello!

Today I am delighted to be reviewing an arc of Blackthorne by Clayton W. Snyder which is out in the world TODAY!! Blackthorne is a bloody fantastic book that I have been chewing over for the last few weeks, and despite the length of this review, I still don’t feel I have done it justice. All I can say is that you should absolutely pick this one up and give it a go, because it really is an experience!

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

Orphan. Conman. Conscript. Inmate. Haunted by the ghosts of his past, Mattias Temple, a failed cadre necromancer, is mauled by fate. When a rogue military squad kidnaps the governor and threatens the city with a magical plague, he has a shot to redeem a lifetime of mistakes and be the one thing he never thought possible: A hero.

Freed from prison, paired with Bridget, a Blackthorne operative, he sets out to right the one crime that truly haunts him.

As the body count rises Mattias finds himself neck-deep in trouble and drowning in ghosts. Hunted by the mercenary company he betrayed and facing the horrors of feral witchcraft, the question remains: who is Mattias Temple, and what does he want? Revenge, or something more?

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Blog Tour (Book Review): Shield Breaker (The Wolf of Kings #2)- Richard Cullen

Hello!

Much later than intended thanks to a chaotic week and a poorly dog, but today I am joining the blog tour for Shield Breaker by Richard Cullen. This is the second book in The Wolf of Kings series, and after reading the first book Oath Bound out of interest last year I was delighted to be invited to read and review book two.

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

Styrkar the warrior sails to dangerous lands in this thrilling new historical adventure from Richard Cullen. The sequel to Oath Bound, longlisted for the Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize 2022.

England, 1068: a land gripped in the iron fist of Frankish invaders. But the Conqueror does not sit easily on his fledgling throne. Rebellion is rife, and the flames of uprising have been ignited in every corner of the kingdom.

Thrown back into this crucible is Styrkar the Dane, former housecarl of the slain King Harold. Forced to travel to Ireland by his deadliest enemy, he must risk the fates of his brothers-in-arms in order to protect the one thing he loves.

So begins a journey that will take Styrkar to the royal court of Dublin, and the frigid climes of the north of England, for loyalty, love and vengeance. He will be tested, beaten and broken, but can any man keep the Red Wolf chained for long?

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Blog Tour (Book Review): Sherpa: Stories of Life and Death from the Forgotten Guardians of Everest – Pradeep Bashyal & Ankit Babu Adhikari

Hello!

Today I am delighted to be joining the Random Things Tours blog tour for Sherpa: Stories of Life and Death from the Forgotten Guardians of Everest by Pradeep Bashyal & Ankit Babu Adhikari. It’s become rarer for me to venture out of SFF these days, but there was no way I could pass on the opportunity to read this one, because not only do I really enjoy non-fiction, but reading about mountaineering and adventure is one of my favourite categories to get lost in. I was already aware of Sherpas because of this, but they are rarely the focus so I couldn’t wait to read a book that focused on them, and this book did not disappoint.

Please do check out the rest of the stops on the tour!

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

Changing the narrative of mountaineering books, Sherpa focuses on the people who live and work on the roof of the world.

Amid all the foreign adventurers that throng to Nepal to scale the world’s highest peaks there exists a small community of mountain people at the foothills of Himalayas. Sherpa tells their story. It’s the story of endeavour and survival at the roof of the world. It dives into their culture and tells of their existence at the edge of life and death. Written by Ankit Babu Adhikari – a writer, social science researcher and musician – and Pradeep Bashyal – a journalist with the BBC based in Nepal – Sherpa traces their story pre- and post-mountaineering revolution, their evolution as climbing crusaders with previously unpublished stories from the most notable and incredible Sherpas of the last 50 years.

This is the story of the Sherpas.

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Book Review: Strange Cargo (Mennik Thorne #3) – Patrick Samphire

Hello!

Today I am delighted to be reviewing Strange Cargo by Patrick Samphire. This is the third book in the fantastic Mennik Thorne series, and will be out on the 29th July (so you still have time to read the first two books!!!). A massive thank you to the author for the opportunity to return to one of my favourite series and characters early!

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

What do a smuggling gang, a curse that won’t go away, and a frequently lost dog have to do with each other?

Answer: they’re all here to disrupt Mennik Thorn’s hard-earned peace and quiet.

As the sole freelance mage in the city of Agatos, Mennik is used to some odd clients and awful jobs. But this time, one of his clients isn’t giving him a choice. Mennik might have forgotten about the smugglers whose operations he disrupted, but they haven’t forgotten about him. Now he is faced with a simple ultimatum: help them smuggle in an unknown, dangerous cargo or flee the city he loves forever.

Time is running out for Mennik to find an answer, and things are about to get completely out of control.

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Blog Tour (Book Review): The Moon’s Eye (The Relics of War #1) – A.J. Calvin

Hello!

Today I am belatedly joining the Escapists Tours blog tour for The Moon’s Eye by A.J. Calvin, the first book in The Relics of War series.

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

Chosen for advanced training by the god of war himself, Vardak is considered a paragon amongst his people, the Scorpion Men. Yet his position and training come with a cost: He must serve the whims of the god, with no questions asked. Only days after his training is complete, he is sent far away from his desert homeland in order to act as the protector of the Fire Maiden’s mortal daughter, Janna.

Janna has been tasked with the recovery of a magical relic known as The Moon’s Eye, but she has little worldly experience to guide her. The Immortals deem the relic’s recovery imperative, for it alone can combat the rise of the Soulless—those sworn to the fallen, nameless god of death. The Soulless are ruthless and powerful, and eager to wage war upon the land in order to appease the god they serve.

Though Vardak is skilled in battle, he must lead Janna through several perilous areas in order to reach the relic she seeks, pushing his abilities to the limit. Unbeknownst to the pair, the Soulless raise an army and begin their conquest, leaving a path of destruction in their wake. Will they secure The Moon’s Eye before all is lost, or will the relic itself prove to be their undoing?

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Blog Tour (Book Review): Whispers of Stone (The Last Gift #2) – Allegra Pescatore

Hello!

Here is the second review for today, as it is my stop on the Escapists Tours blog tour for Whispers of Stone by Allegra Pescatore, the second book in the Last Gift Series. You can find my review for book one here, and I hope that you will check out the other blogs involved with this tour. There is also a chance to win a copy for yourself at the end of this post.

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

A God is Dead. A Queen is Missing. Secrets are Unraveling.

On trial for the murder of the King, Elenor and Gabriel must become allies if they want to survive. His magic is spiraling out of control, awakening a mystery hidden in the very walls of the palace. She has one month to pass her Water Rite and find a way out of the marriage her parents set up. But things are about to get much more complicated.

Between sadistic family members intent on taking Elenor’s throne, Tirit Mindel breathing down Gabriel’s neck, and a Golden Dragon appearing in the sky above the Mondaer Desert with an ominous warning, more than the Kingdom of Lirin is at stake.

If that weren’t bad enough, time is ticking down for Fedrik and Fay as well. With the desert turning against them and Daemon as a questionable new ally, figuring out how to control Fedrik’s Gift has become a matter of life and death.

Picking up in the fallout of Where Shadows Lie, Whispers of Stone is the long-awaited and non-stop second installment of The Last Gift. Dive back into the world of Dracona and hold onto your hats. Things are about to get… salty.

——-

Author’s Note: While the Last Gift may be read as a stand-alone series, it is meant to be read alongside the other books of Project Ao. The Suggested Reading Order is:

Where Shadows Lie

NACL: Eye of the Storm

Whispers of Stone

These Gossamer Strings

NACL: Storm Surge (Forthcoming)

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Book Review: Where Shadows Lie (The Last Gift #1) – Allegra Pescatore

Hello!

This is the first of two reviews today, as it is my stop on the blog tour for the second book in this series – and so I wanted to share this review of book one first. Where Shadows Lie is the first book in The Last Gift series, and a book that had been on my TBR for a while, and which time did not allow me to do justice to before it’s tour so I am hopefully making up for that now

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

The Chosen One is Dead.

Disabled since childhood, his little sister never expected the weight of a crown. Now, she might lose it before ever sitting on the throne. Beset by rebels, scheming politicians, and cutthroat bankers, Elenor must choose between accepting her father’s despotic rule or risking everything for her late brother’s lofty ideals.

Meanwhile, from the rainy streets of Lirin to the scorching dunes of the Mondaer Desert, the ripples of her actions have inadvertently broken a chain of events five centuries in the making. Ancient forces move in the shadows, calling in debts and striking deals. A monster with a thousand faces fingers his knife, ready to kill, and a pair of fugitives run for their lives, unaware of the danger they carry with them. 

Where Shadows Lie is a non-stop epic fantasy ride, featuring an lgbtq+ and disabled protagonist and filled with court intrigue, sizzling romance, and adorable baby dragons. Dive in and get swept away!

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Blog Tour (Book Review): A King’s Radiance (Bonds of Kin #1)- L.R. Schulz

Hello!

A little later than planned because it did not dawn on me that it was thursday until rather late this evening (my sense of time is all over the place after the last couple of years), but here is my stop on the Escapists Tours blog tour for A King’s Radiance by L.R. Schulz. This is the first book in the Bonds of Kin series, and the author’s debut, as well as entrant in this years SPFBO competition.

Please do check out the other blogs involved with the tour!

Disclaimer – I received a copy in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Book Summary:

Three siblings… a rebel, a prince, a prisoner

The sun’s light shines bright over the land of Zapour, and only a select few can harness its power. But all power comes with a cost, and the world is not kind to those who refuse to pay it.

Raiz Glaive, a strong shine wielder, was born into royalty, though even royals have to answer to someone. When the King-Radiant sends one of his precious underlings to the Kingdom of Trost, Raiz quickly learns who holds the true power in the realm. After his sister is taken prisoner simply for having the violet eyes of a mystic, Raiz swears vengeance. But when an unwilling father stands in his way, Raiz promises to take revenge into his own hands.

Dazen Glaive remains heir to the throne of Trost, and a sworn defender of the King-Radiant, but he has not forgotten what happened to his sister, and will not forgive their cruelty.

Forced to be the centerpiece of her “master’s” twisted human art gallery, Isha remains a prisoner. Though she has not lost hope. Finding friends among fellow captives, she begins to formulate a plan for escape. Though what she discovers has a much more sinister bearing on the fate of all of Zapour.

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