Blog Tour (Book Review): A Shade of Madness (The Ashes of Avarin #2) – Thiago Abdalla

Hello!

Today it’s my pleasure to be joining the Escapists Books blog tour for A Shade of Madness by Thiago Abdalla, the second book in the Ashes of Avarin series and sequel to the SPFBO finalist A Touch of Light. You can find my review for book one HERE, and 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:

Avarin tumbles into madness through the shattered ruin of a centuries-old peace.

As griffin riders clash against airships above and hordes of madmen below, Lynn finds herself surrounded by enemies. Ones that will test the limits of her faith. To defeat them, she must risk everything… including her sanity.

Adrian has lost the Legion, but new magics on foreign shores might be the answer he needs to rebuild his army. His return to the Domain will bring vengeance, and the hope that he will finally prove himself to his father.

Nasha’s curse has taken on a new, terrifying shape. She dreads it could be just what the dead goddess needs to escape from Her prison within the Silent Earth. Will she be strong enough to resist, or will Nasha’s curse give rise to the monster she fears to become?

Madness is spreading and it cares not for the borders of men.

A Shade of Madness is the second book in the Ashes of Avarin series, picking up straight after the exciting conclusion of A Touch of Light.

Continue reading “Blog Tour (Book Review): A Shade of Madness (The Ashes of Avarin #2) – Thiago Abdalla”

Blog Tour (Book Review): Wisdom Lost (Pandemonium Rising #2) – Michael Sliter

Hello!

Belatedly (due to writing the wrong date in my diary) I am delighted to be joining the Escapist Tours blog tour for Wisdom Lost by Michael Sliter, with a review for both this book and book one Solace Lost. This is a series I had been meaning to pick up for a while, so I am glad to have had the chance to get into it.

Please do check out the other stops on the tour!

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

Book Summary:

During times of war, no one goes unscathed. By Ultner, even in times of peace, few can escape suffering. Ardia is on the brink of civil war, though most citizens are woefully unaware of this fact.

Fenrir de Trenton, a disgraced guardsman-turned-ineffective-criminal, is accustomed to taking orders. So much so that, despite the danger, he finds himself neck-deep in the politicking of his current superiors as well as the rulers of the country. The fact that Fenrir’s father would rather see him dead doesn’t help matters.

Emma Dram, a handmaiden of the great Lady Escamilla, hates Fenrir with a fiery passion and with good reason: he lopped off most of her hand. Nonetheless, she finds herself in close proximity to her former lover as she seeks to serve her lady liege in fomenting her own rebellion.

Hafgan Iwan is a Wasmer, a race reviled by humans, who serves the same masters as Fenrir. His efforts to assimilate with human culture only earn him the derision of his own race, and he seeks to find belonging amidst the escalating conflict.

Meanwhile, Merigold Hinter, a serving girl with an unusual power, lives a simple existence, hoping for love, adventure, and to see the world. Her life should be untouched by political maneuvering and war. However, her world becomes a crucible—how much can one woman bear before breaking?

A story of love lost and family destroyed, of bigotry and belonging, of suffering and strength, and of religion and magic, SOLACE LOST grows from a character-driven tale to something grand in scale, perhaps even involving the gods, themselves.

Book Summary:

Ardia is fractured, torn apart by civil war initiated by deceit. Florens has fallen, and the rebel army of Lady Escamilla has been scattered by the Feral. Little stands in the way of the Rostanians and their ruthless rulers seizing the entire country. Amidst this rising conflict, four people seek to stem this tide. Or, to simply survive.

Fenrir, also called the Bull, Coldbreaker, Dukeslayer, and sometimes bastard, has the worst kind of luck. Instead of being dead, pierced by a dozen swords, he finds himself under the control of the most horrible person he knows: his father. And an unwelcome family reunion is made more unpleasant as clandestine and legitimate powers vie for the rule of Rostane.

Meanwhile, Hafgan Iwan breaks an oath to himself—that he would never return home. The hallowed Wasmer city of Hackeneth is not welcoming, particularly as a new god has usurped the old ways. Hafgan is torn between the world he once knew and the one he has created for himself.

Leading the exhausted and haphazard remnants of a rebel army, Lady Emma Breen seeks allies across the border, in the crumbling city of Farrow’s Hold. But when faith clashes with politics, can a faithless former handmaiden hold them all together?

And Merigold Hinter travels across oceans to the fabled Agricorinor with a wish and a warning. The wish? That she may understand her powers and take revenge. The warning? The Feral are coming, and they will tear out the throat of the world.

Continue reading “Blog Tour (Book Review): Wisdom Lost (Pandemonium Rising #2) – Michael Sliter”

Blog Tour (Extract & Book Review): A Cup of Tea at the Mouth of Hell (Or, An Account of Catastrophe by Stoudemire McCloud, Demon) – Luke Tarzian

Hello!

Attempt two at this as the train wifi and wordpress ate the first one. Today I am delighted to be joining the Escapists Tours blog tour for A Cup of Tea at the Mouth of Hell by Luke Tarzian. This was my book of the year for 2022. I was honoured to be a beta reader and arc reader for this book, and I have read it countless times since. I ADORE this book, so I am glad to be able to shout about it again. Below you will find an extract to whet your appetite, as well as my review, with a few new comments in (brackets) as I’ve revisited the book this week.

There is also currently a chance to win a copy of this fantastic book for yourself over on my twitter (this is not linked to the blog tour)

Please do check out the rest of the posts from tour.

Book Summary:

BRIEFLY, A WORD ABOUT ORDER

Order is the focal point around which existence revolves. Without order there is only chaos. And in the halls of Damnation (pronounced Dam-NAWT-ion, thank you kindly) the first sign of impending chaos is a cup of tea made without the water having first been well and properly boiled in a kettle.

Why is this relevant, O nameless narrator, you ask? Who cares about the preparatory order of tea in the fires of Hell?

Lucifer, dear reader. After all, how does one expect to properly greet the newcomers to Hell without having first had a hot cup of tea to bulwark the cold?

Behold The Morning Star, frantic on the annual Morning of Souls, the arrival of Damnation’s newest recruits.

Someone has misplaced the kettle.

Continue reading “Blog Tour (Extract & Book Review): A Cup of Tea at the Mouth of Hell (Or, An Account of Catastrophe by Stoudemire McCloud, Demon) – Luke Tarzian”

Blog Tour (Book Review): A Bond of Thread (The Mountain Fell #1) – Allegra Pescatore & J.P. Burnison

Hello!

I’m kicking off today with my very belated stop on the Escapists Tours blog tour for A Bond of Thread by Allegra Pescatore & J.P. Burnison, the first book in the Moutain Fell series. Please do check out the other blogs that participated in the tour to see their thoughts on this book.

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

Book Summary:

Enter the Nine Lands of the Mountain Fell.

Skye has only ever known pain and solitude since waking up with neither memories or magic. Hunted for being a Ruler in a time when they are scarce, she has survived in the wilds near the Rim, always on the run from the rest of her kind. Only starvation could draw her close to a village, but when a chance encounter and a bit of bad luck launch her into the arms of a man whose soul is bonded to hers, hiding who she is may no longer be possible.

Ilyas is a hunted man. Wanted for killing the last High Queen of Vine, he is plagued by his past of wholesale slaughter. He never wanted another Queen, and certainly not a half-feral, distrustful girl who gave up on the Fae a long time ago. Unfortunately, Soulbonds are not so easily walked away from, no matter how hard they both may want to, especially when trapped together in a cave with a pack of Feral Fae right outside.

With long-held enmities breaking out between the besieged villagers and all their lives on the line, Ilyas and Skye must learn to work together and trust each other if they want to survive.

Continue reading “Blog Tour (Book Review): A Bond of Thread (The Mountain Fell #1) – Allegra Pescatore & J.P. Burnison”

Blog Tour (Book Spotlight): Warrior of Light – William Heinzen

Hello!

Today I am belatedly joining the Escapists Tour for Warrior of Light by William Heinzen with an extract to whet your appetite and a chance to win a copy for yourself. I will also have a full review up on the blog as soon as life gets a bit more settled because I really enjoyed this one!

Please do check out the other stops on the tour.

Book Summary:

Tim Matthias has only ever known the peace of the South, but that peace is shattered when a group of mysterious creatures destroys his home. In search of answers, Tim discovers the poisoned wastelands of the North, where the Dark Lord Zadinn Kanas rules over all. It is here that Tim joins forces with a band of freedom fighters on a quest to find the Army of Kah’lash, a mythical force destined to serve those in need. At the same time, Tim must learn to use the magic of the Lifesource, for he is the Warrior of Light. As Tim struggles to accept his destiny, those around him must battle their way across the North, seeking a means to wage one last, desperate stand against Zadinn and his armies…

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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?

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

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.

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

Blog Tour (Book Review): At the Threshold of the Universe (The Song of Kamaria) – T.A. Bruno

Hello!

Belatedly, as yesterday was a wee bit of a disaster, culminating in me managing to lose three documents at once including this review (save all your files kids), but I am delighted to be joining The Escapist Tours blog tour for At The Threshold of the Universe by T.A. Bruno. This is the third and final book in the The Song of Kamaria trilogy. It’s been my pleasure to be involved with tours for the previous two books as well, and it’s a little bittersweet to have reached the end – but what an end!

You can find my reviews for book one and current SPSFC finalist In the Orbit of Sirens and book two On the Wind of Quasars.

Please do check out the rest of the tour, as well as the giveaway at the end of the post (US only).

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

Book Summary:

THE EPIC CONCLUSION TO THE SONG OF KAMARIA TRILOGY.

ALL SONGS END.

War ravages Kamaria as an old enemy resurfaces from the depths of the ocean. Offering no support in the coming battles, the Auk’nai isolate themselves in their tightly guarded Nest. Outgunned and outmatched, humanity once again trembles on the edge of obliteration.

The Castus family is torn apart. Denton fights on the front lines, hoping to free Cade from a nightmarish foe. Meanwhile, Eliana and Nella set out on a path that will change everything they understand about the Sirens. The Song will end, but who will remain to hear its final verse?

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Blog Tour (Book Review): Perception Check (The Mages of Velmyra Saga #1) – Astrid Knight

Hello!

Today I am delighted to be joining the Escapists Tours blog tour for Perception Check by Astrid Knight. I was super excited to read this one as a keen D&D player (although usually the words ‘perception check’ are a cause for concern and rolling dice), and I had a lot of fun with this book and can’t wait to continue the series.

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

Book Summary:

Her favorite tabletop roleplaying game is real, and her kidnapped childhood best friend is trapped in a far off land. Will she be able to save her? Let’s roll initiative!

Violet Spence wants nothing more than to have a normal life. After witnessing her childhood best friend get abducted by monsters, that’s easier said than done. At twenty-three years old, Violet cannot seem to move past that fateful night ten years ago. Her only solace is Mages of Velmyra, a tabletop roleplaying game filled with goblins, fairies, and all-powerful magicians. But of course, that’s all fantasy.

Or so she thought. As it turns out, the land of Velmyra is very real and the home of the monsters that took her best friend.

With the help of her friends (and the creator of the game itself), Violet must navigate the once-fictional creatures and powerful mages of Velmyra to retrieve a set of ancient relics—all in the hopes that the journey will lead her back to her friend. But for Violet, fighting monsters and magic workers doesn’t seem nearly as terrifying as confronting her own demons. And she’ll soon realize fighting the battle within herself can be just as tough as those fought against demigods.

Perception Check is the magical first installment of the Mages of Velmyra Saga, great for fans of Dungeons and Dragons, Critical Role, and The Magicians. With endearing and hilarious characters, an exploration of mental health and trauma, LGBTQ+ representation, gut-wrenching twists, and a whirlwind of an ending, you will never want to leave the world of Velmyra.

Continue reading “Blog Tour (Book Review): Perception Check (The Mages of Velmyra Saga #1) – Astrid Knight”

Blog Tour (Book Spotlight): Where Shadows Lie (The Last Gift #1) – Allegra Pescatore

Hello!

Today I am delighted to be joining the Escapists Tours blog tour for Where Shadows Lie by Allegra Pescatore. I do have a review coming for this book, which is one I’d been wanting to read for ages but unfortunately I’ve been struck down with a nasty bug of some kind and as I want to do the book justice, I’m waiting until I feel less dead. So today I have a spotlight, complete with an extract and a chance to win this fantastic book for yourself.

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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