Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Isle of Stars

Bookworm's Ranking - 4 Worms
Storyline - Cat and Ann are about to be married. At least, they were engaged but the author never wrote the wedding, which has Kaylie Keaton, a Dreamtreader, upset. While wishing she could read more of their adventure, Kaylie suddenly finds herself aboard the Robert Bruce, with no idea how she got there or how to get home. The good news is, the wedding is not far away. The bad news, they are currently chasing a mad pirate who is in search of the Isle of Stars, an island filled with glowing gems said to be the last corner of Eden untouched by man. Not only is Kaylie now involved in a story she loves, but it might just cost her life as the danger mounts.

Author - Wayne Thomas Batson

Publisher - Spear Head Books

Age Group - 13 and up
Content - *May Contain Spoilers* Fights and skirmishes ensure between the pirates but no gory details. A man it tortured but the there are only screams. Kaylie is willing to risk her life to help her friends and save others. Forgiveness and willing to change is also a theme.

Personal Opinion - We returned to the Robert Bruce. Yay! This was short read but fun to see another enlightening adventure with these pirates on the high season. One interesting part was that is wasn't completely just a Isle Chronicles story but also a Dreamtreaders (another novel series by Batson) story too. In fact, the story was short enough and had both these characters in them that the book could be considered a 0.5 story in both books' series. Most of the story was from the view point of Kaylie, a  Dreamtreader, who somehow ended up with the crew on board their ship. It made for an interesting reading experience and the reader got to see characters from both series and a few quick walk-ons from other books (I didn't identify them all but I enjoy when authors write those cameos). While this was fun, I could see a couple negatives (experienced one of them) form this. One, I didn't get to see as much of Ann and Cat or their perspectives and thoughts as much as I wanted to (but the book ended making me think that there might possibly be another full length story someday so here's hoping [I know, the author finally writes another pirate story and, after finishing it, I'm asking for another. I guess I can't be satisfied]). Second, if the reader hadn't read the Dreamtreaders series before this, they might not appreciate it as much (maybe even lost). Still, it was a fun little adventure with an interesting and deep lesson inside it. Anyone who has read the The Isle Chronicles will want to read this and anyone who has read the Isle Chronicles and Dreamtreaders will really enjoy it.

Buy - Amazon, Barnes and Noble,

Other Reviews for this Author

The Berinfell Prophesies - Review
The Dark Sea Annals: Sword in the Stars and The Errant King - Review
Dreamtreaders: Search for the Shadow Key and War for the Waking World - Review
The Isle Chronicles: Isle of Swords - Review

To read or comment on this and other reviews, stop by Bookworm
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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Space Kitties 2

"Searching the Cosmos"
(Picture Copied from Amazon)
Bookworm's Ranking - 4 Worms
Storyline - The cats are off again into space with Hearth Books newest anthology, Space Kitties 2. In this collection, cats fight aliens, fly spaceships, and save their world from various dangers. A puuurrrfect lazy read for the beach (or curled up on the couch in a blanket once the snow hits) for cat and space readers.

Editor - E. Kaiser Writes

Authors - A.J. Bakke, Lesa McKee, H.L. Burke, Faith Blum, Rachel Ann Michael Harris (That's me!), Jamie Mortensen,

Publisher - Hearth Books

Age Group - All Ages

Personal Opinion - This was a charming read. Some had me smiling, some in an adventure, and some just enjoying cats in space. I think this anthology is almost better than last year's (no, I'm not being biased), not to say last years wasn't good, but I engaged with this year's stories better. Some of my favorites is the Operation Space Cats book 2 story and the one that is reminiscent of Star Trek and the beautiful poem at the beginning. If you want a simple, quick read or just to get a full story in short snippets of time, this is fun, charming, and full of various types of cats.

Buy - Amazon

Interview - Here is an interview I had with the author Lesa McKee who wrote Operation Space Cats. 

Disclaimer - I am the author of Star Hopper Engineer, published in this anthology, and such this review is based upon the other stories not mine.

To read or comment on this and other reviews, stop by Bookworm
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Friday, August 5, 2016

Books Released in June and July

Hey Bookworms,

So, June and July past without much from me. Not even on update or what books were releasing. Sorry about that. Life just got away. Anyways, I'm working on getting some reviews up and I thought, since I didn't see any books releasing in August that I was excited about (that I know of, at least) I would share the ones the released in June and July that I missed announcing. Enjoy.

The Marked Girl

What got my interest for this book was the cover at first. But the story has kept me interested. I like books where characters from our world travels to a new one but this book does it in reverse, people from another world travel to ours. And, of course, it is fantasy so I will probably check it out.

Release Date: June 7

Dragons: Defenders of Berk Vol. 2: Snowmageddon

It the Dragon graphic novel series. I don't even need to know what it is about. I have just been enjoying the series and the continued, new adventures of Hiccup, Toothless, and the other Vikings. I already have this book on pre-order so I just have to wait for the release date and read it.

Release Date: June 21

The Enemy Above

Last by not least. Michael P. Spradlin is a great author and I've checked out his new books after reading his Youngest Templar series a few years back. I was really excited to hear about this book, a WWII novel. He is a great writer and this looks like its going to be a great adventure so it is another one I will have to get when it releases.

Release Date: June 28th

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

You probably already heard about this book, might have even attended a midnight release but wanted to share. Reading this now and am enjoying it. I will have to post a review once I've finished. It picks up where the last book left off, nineteen years later. If you are a Harry Potter fan, you might be interested to know also that the script for Fantastic Beasts will also be available to buy and read after the movie comes out. According to J.K. Rowling's website, more Wizarding World stuff will be published from now into 2019. Check out the post titled Exciting New Publishing to come from J.K. Rowling's Wizarding World.

Note: Keep in mind this is a script book which means it will be written differently than a novel.

Release Date: July 31st

Some great stuff. What about you? Any of these also look interesting? Making note of a book you are interested in? Share and everyone else know about a new possible good read.
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Wednesday, August 3, 2016

King's Folly

"Their Battle for the Throne has just Begun.
But Will it Matter if the World They Rule
Collapses into the Sea?"
Bookworm's Ranking - 4 Worms

Storyline - The world is falling apart; cliffs fall into the sea, a town is swallowed by water, a thriving city sinks into the ground. The king believes more human sacrifices will save them. His son, Wilek, believes other wise. But this is just the beginning. The five kingdoms are raging with their own problems, beliefs, and wars. Yet, they might soon all face a devastating disaster if something doesn't change.

Author - Jill Williamson

Publisher - Bethany House

Age Group - 17 and up

Content - *May Contain Spoilers* Sex, at least for the first third, was mentioned every few pages whether is was about concubines, teasing about being with a female (this was done by the males), being (or fear of) taken advantage of, or who was with who, it was everywhere. There is also a scene at the beginning were a man is sacrificed to a god and also a short history of past sacrifices. Magic with the use of contacting spirits and doing rituals. Now, none of what has been listed so far is suggested in anyway as a good thing to the reader. The characters, in their own opinions on certain items, don't see the issue but it is clear to the reader. A lot of the characters do want to do right, love others, and fight to help someone in need, all while doing something listed above. They are real people struggling in this world on a journey to the truth.

Personal Opinion - If I had to choose one word to describe King's Folly, it would be intense. At least, that is how I felt. There are numerous characters of all different personalities (some are more likeable than others) and the darkness in the world is very much the same as the trials and dangers of our world. The story, while having a very Biblical feel to the story, almost a retelling from on of its books, and the situations the characters face, I couldn't help but make comparisons to our current world and times. Themes also of sexuality and its use were very prevalent in the story and made me think of how people see and use it today. How much sex was focused on really bothered me. Yes, I will give that it isn't supposed to be a positive thing the characters are doing even though they don't know that yet, but I found it stressful and irritating to be running into it so much. It felt over emphasized when the human sacrificing or other issues could have been discussed too to see the peoples' sinfulness that is leading to the destruction of their world. It has a part in the story and the message it is sending but I had a hard time dealing with it. It got to the point that I would see whose point of view I was heading for and would dread it, wanting instead to jump to a character I was more interested in instead.

Actually, that was some of the redeeming qualities I found in the book, the characters I liked so much that I couldn't wait to get back to them and their interactions and struggles. I personally loved the characters Mielle, Trevn, Onika and her cat, Kal, and Grayson. I know I'm forgetting some because their were so many in this highly developed world. Strangely enough, while the plethora of characters expanded the story and brought it to life, there were also times I didn't like it because there were too many points of view and also made the book seem long and more drawn out than it need to. This had two affects on me. One was the too many characters, over whelming aspect, and the second was a world believable and come to life, breathing into it something not always caught in stories.

If I had one more thing that I didn't like (yet worked in an interesting, almost teaching way) was that I had no idea who was supposed to represent God in this story for over half the book because their were so many different gods the characters followed. Being a Christian book, I thought it would be clear and I would get this right away. In the end, while I still wished I had known sooner, I think it taught something interesting in my not pinning it down so fast. In life, we get distracted by so many things, our wants and desires, and the various voices of the world, that we lose track of God and not always sure where to turn. Also, someone who isn't Christian, might think He sounds so much like all the other religions that it is just another in the pot. It made me think on how others might see the world and see God and religion.

In short, this book deals with some dark and serious matters yet the characters are understandable, relatable, and connectable where the reader wants them to change or become better or their circumstances to become better in a world that is terrifyingly like our own. It is a book that makes you think, especially when you start linking it to our world. It was a book which I had a hard time liking it but would recommend to anyone who like high fantasy and loves these types of stories. I also apologize for my novel length review but a book this size and this much depth requires more.

Video - This is a song inspired by the book and is beautiful.

Buy - Amazon, Barnes and Noble, ChristianBook, Publisher,

Other Reviews for this Author -

Disclaimer - In exchange for an honest review, I received this book for free from the publisher through Bethany House Bloggers.

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