Posted in book addict, book review, book series, reading, series review

Series Review: The Land By Aleron Kong

I honestly never heard of LitRPG books until a friend of my started talking about writing one. I was full of questions. He ended up suggesting a few series to read in LitRPG. I was hesitant at first, because I do love playing RPG video games, but never considered reading a story that was like a video game. So decided to take the plunge. Wow, what a ride!

I started my adventure with Aleron Kong and his LitRPG series called The Land.

I won’t lie, the first book took me several weeks to finish. It took me awhile to adjust to how LitRPG books work.

One of the major differences of a LitRPG compared to a regular novel is there are regular status updates on the character and “game play”. In this particular series, it happened with tabled charts showing the progression of the characters points, level attributes, upgrades, ect.

At first this was very jarring to me, because I felt liked it halted the story big time. On the other hand, I did like knowing all the progression and upgrades as the story progressed. I think for me, it was just getting used to this kind of new reading style. Once I did, I literally could not put these freaking books down. I felt like I was right there with Richter as he stepped into The Land and began a wild journey of adventure and exploration.

aThe story starts out with a group of real life gamers playing a video game. One of the players ends up finding a hard to reach place in the game that he’s been searching for a long time. He’s expecting epic loot, but ends up finding himself catapulted into a new reality.

Once inside The Land, Richter quickly makes new friends and enemies as well as discovers an old place of power, which he claims and plans to erect a village. He quickly becomes a powerhouse as he racks up points and power, determined to find as much loot as possible and rise to the top.

Right now this book has eight books with a ninth on the way soon. The titles are…

Founding, Forging, Alliances, Catacombs, Swarm, Raiders, Predators, Monsters.

This book is set in a fantasy type setting with swords, dwarfs, elves, magic, monsters, and many more fun and imaginative things. There’s a lot of exploration and learning about this new world. There’s also lots of fighting action with sprites, goblins, demons, banished gods, and hordes of monstrous creatures.

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Posted in book addict, book review, book series, hooked on books, series review

Book Series Review: Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children By Ranson Riggs

I started reading this series after I watched the movie in theaters back in 2016. The movie peaked my interest enough to start reading the books, and I’m so glad, because I really enjoyed the first three books (Home For Peculiar Children, Hollow City, and Library of Souls). Though, I thought that was the end of the series, because the way book three ended, it seemed like a good place to stop things.

A few years later, I was browsing in a library, and was tickled pink when I stumbled across book 4: A Map Of Days. I grabbed it off the shelf and eagerly went home to to read it. And the way book 4 ended, I knew 5 was in the works, because it left the story on a pretty huge cliffhanger. So I waited patiently for Conference of the Birds, which of course was as fantastic as the other books. And then yesterday, I finally finished the series reading book 6: The Desolations of Devil’s Acre.

I have to say there isn’t any feeling quite like the one being hooked on a good series. The anticipation of what will happen next, and the excitement of knowing some of your favorite characters are coming back to dish up a great read. So when I finished Devil’s Acre, I was a little sad that the series was done. But also completely satisfied, because Riggs delivered a very good wrap up for his six book series (man, I love it when that happens!).

Ransom Riggs dished up a fun, exciting, and darkly twisted story that delighted and left me in shocked horror more than once. The best part was the absolute weirdness of his world. Some of the stuff he came up with was absolutely impossible, but he made it believable for his story, and that, I think, was his crowning achievement. He took weird (peculiar) and made it cool, fun, and causing me wish I was a little peculiar too.

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Book Series Review: The Iron Druid Chronicles By Kevin Hearne

It’s been a long time since I’ve done a series review, but I recently finished this series and really wanted to share my thoughts on it.

I have to tell you the Iron Druid books left an impact on me. I can honestly say that this is definitely one of my favorite series, but it’s also one that I dislike as well. But before I get into all of that, let me tell you a little bit about what this series is about.

The Iron Druid Chronicles starts with the book Hounded. A 2,100 year old druid is masquerading as a 21 year-old who owns an occult book store in modern day Arizona. To every one he looks like some stoner college student, but in reality he’s packing a lot of ancient knowledge and power. But don’t tell anyone, because he’s supposed to be hiding out from an Irish god who wants to kill him.

And it just gets better (and more complicated from there). lol…

The story follows Atticus on many and crazy escapades as he tries to hold his own against a bunch of religious pantheons that don’t like him very much. It might be because he’s a little bit snarky and doesn’t really care what anyone might think about him or what he does, he also has a big issue with people (or gods) who harm the earth, because he’s druid, duh. So that can really get him riled up sometimes.

My absolute favorite part of this story is that Atticus has a faithful companion named Oberon who is an Irish wolfhound, and Atticus has taught him how to speak (mentally). So it’s just a lot of fun to watch their awesome conversations play out, and see this deep friendship between hound and human grow over the course of the series.

This series includes 9 books and a bunch of novellas and short stories. The short stories and novellas help to bring more depth to the main story, and in many cases, I found the novellas and short stories to be superior in story quality to some of the novels. So I highly recommend them.

I’m not going to list out the whole chronological order of stories, novellas, and novels. You can find that information on Hearne’s website. But here are the 9 books in the series.

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Series Review: The Artifact Hunters

I picked up a book in November that sent me on an exciting reading spree. I did a Book Review: Nefertiti’s Heart By A.W. Exley in November, but after finishing the series decided to contact the author directly. I loved her books so much, I wanted to find out more about them, and her. But before I post her author interview, I wanted to do a post summarizing the five books of her series.

The Artifact Hunters is a series set in the Victorian age with steampunk as the background. The two main characters are Cara Devon and Nathan Lyons. They are two members of the London peerage, but with much different backgrounds. But it’s their fighting spirit and love of adventure that draw these two together.

A series of five books showcase each of their stories, and the their combined story that throw them into some intense situations that will have you on the edge of your seat. Each book also showcases a particular artifact that either needs to be found, or stopped from creating chaos. Here’s a brief summary of each of the books.

Book 1: Nefertiti’s Heart is where the characters Cara and Nathan meet under precarious circumstances. Cara has to decide if she should trust the nefarious Lyons so she can get the money she needs to set herself up for a comfortable life. She also has to deal with her recently departed father and all the ancient artifacts he left behind. You can read more about this book through Book Review: Nefertiti’s Heart By A.W. Exley

Book 2: Hatshepsut’s Collar finds Nathan on Queen Victoria’s bad side. She’s detained Nathan in the Tower of London. Cara must decide how far she will go to help him. And when she discovers that the Queen is wearing a dangerous artifact, Cara must find away to convince the Queen to give it up. In the meantime, Nathan and Cara have a lot of trouble on their heels as they travel by airship to Russia and Siberia.

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Posted in author, author interview, book addict, book review, Indie Author

An Author Interview With Elina Vale

Last month I did a book review on The Charmed Locket by Elina Vale. It is the first book in The Treasure Hunter’s Heart series. Shortly after I did the review, I managed to get a hold of an ARC copy of the second book Hidden Truths.

Elina continues the story where the first book leaves off, and we follow Gina, Philip, Ramon, and Sera, who are in search the third wolf statue. This statue will lead them to where the coveted book of mechanical charms rests. And the Divided are hot on their trail.

A showdown between the Guild and the Divided leads to tragedy. Later, Gina finds herself back in her hometown burdened by what she knows. War is coming, and she’s not sure what to do about it. Who can she tell? Who should she trust? As she tries to find a way forward in ever darkening circumstances, Gina makes some discoveries that helps her realize she’s not quite alone as she thought she was.

The first two books have been a really fun read. I love how this series has captivated my attention. So I decided to contact the author to see what more I could learn about her books, and the author herself. Here is the interview with Elina Vale. Her responses are in bolded text.

Thank you so much, Elina, for taking the time to do this interview! First, I have some questions about your books.  

You are currently writing a series called The Treasure Hunter’s Heart. It is a series based off the idea of charmed mechanics that have what seems like magical powers. These mechanics were supposedly destroyed and many people in the books think them pure legend, except for a few like the main character Gina Mansfred, who is in a desperate search to find out more about them. I think this is an intriguing plot premises. Can you tell us more about these charmed mechanics, and maybe a little about where your original ideas for the mechanics came from? 

Charmed mechanics are different kinds of items, that seem to be just regular objects like necklaces, statues, pens, boxes and so on, but they all have been enchanted. Charms are first built like any object with mechanics (with locks, hatches, moving parts) are, but after that, magic will bring them alive: A box opens with a secret word, a jewel could turn you invisible by twisting a certain piece on it, a statue might come alive when you blow on it a certain number of times… So the charms are a combination of mechanics and magic. 

I guess the idea of regular items being enchanted kind of intrigued me.  

Gina is in a pretty desperate situation where she finds herself between two warring organizations who are searching for the mechanics, and to bring them back from myths of old to everyday usage. She also happens to be romantically stuck between two men that are heading these opposing expeditions. This in itself is creating a lot of tension, conflict, and darkness for Gina personally. Out of all her struggles, what do you perceive to be her biggest hurtle to overcome?  

She has a lot of growing up to do in these books for sure. Her biggest issues in this series will definitely be her trust issues and her fear of losing people.  These will make her do some hazardous things before she learns to trust in others and let go of this fear. She also struggles morally and wants to do the right thing. The problem is that she is not sure what the right thing to do actually is… 

Gina poses as a thief in book one called Lily, who boldly takes from the rich to give the more unfortunate. Will we see a return of “Lily” in future books? 

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