Reviews by Vanessa

Review

Kill the Farm Boy

Posted: July 12, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Love Tags: Delilah S. Dawson, Fantasy, Humor, Kevin Hearne
Kill the Farm Boy

Take every fantasy trope, every dungeon crawl, every fairytale stereotype and put them in a bag, smash the bag with a hammer, then dump out the pieces and you get KILL THE FARM BOY. It’s a romp of a book, with clever turns of phrase, goofy characters, a quest they don’t realize they’re on, all while poking fun at every fantasy book you’ve ever read. Terry Pratchett would be proud.
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Review

Terror Is Our Business

Posted: June 26, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Love Tags: Horror, Joe Lansdale, Kasey Lansdale
Terror Is Our Business

I have a confession to make. I’ve never read any Lansdale before. I know, I know. Withhold the tomatoes. I blame Steve for always taking them when I was a newbie here at EBR. Now I realize what I was missing and will quickly remedy this failing.

Because if you love horror, mysteries, thrillers…. heck, anything well written, you should be reading Lansdale.
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Review

By Fire Above

Posted: June 13, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Robyn Bennis, Steampunk
By Fire Above

Josette is the captain of the airship Mistral, and after the events of THE GUNS ABOVE (EBR review), she’s made enough of a name for herself that she doesn’t have to worry about the powers-that-be of taking her ship away from her. But the war with the Vins continues to rage, and making a name for oneself means that her and her crew are thrown once again into the fray to fight for Garnia.

But the scariest thing Josette will do is navigate the Garnian royal court.
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Review

A Secret History of Witches

Posted: June 7, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Fantasy, Louisa Morgan
A Secret History of Witches

The book begins in 1821, when a small group of Romani (gypsies) are escaping immanent death by leaving France for England. And the only reason they escape is through the efforts of the group’s matriarch and the magic she’s inherited from her witch ancestresses. The OrchiĆ©re women have used their magic for hundreds of years, the magic following their daughters from generation to generation. A SECRET HISTORY OF WITCHES follows their genealogy from 1821 to World War II, showcasing a line of vibrant women connected tightly to their family’s past and future.
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Review

The Tombs

The Tombs

Teenage Avery’s life changed the day her mother was committed to the Tombs, a ‘hospital’ for the insane. In an effort to hide their disgrace–and out of necessity as their middle-class standing is ruined–Avery and her father change their names and move to a less desirable part of town, where her father opens a clockwork shop and she begins working as a welder at a local factory. It’s not the life she lived before, where she went to school, wore nice clothes, and was friends with girls her age–and when her father didn’t drink himself into a stupor every night. But not everything is bleak. She has her peregrine “Seraphine”, best friend Khan, and welding work that she realizes she has a knack for.

Everything changes again when new abilities begin to manifest and she realizes that her mother was hospitalized for being crazy when in reality she has empathic powers.
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Review

Seventh Decimate

Posted: May 2, 2018 by Vanessa in Books that are Mediocre Tags: Fantasy, Stephen R. Donaldson
Seventh Decimate

It’s probably been fifteen years since I last read any Stephen Donaldson. It started with LORD FOUL’S BANE then the two sequels in that trilogy (which ultimately became 10 books) and, honestly, they weren’t my favorite. The main character was more anti-hero than I’d encountered before, and any reader could see that Tolkien had an influence on Donaldson’s worldbuilding. But Donaldson has a following, so I thought I’d try again with his most recent offering, SEVENTH DECIMATE, which as far as I could tell would be different than the series that introduced me to the author.

Turns out, my first impressions of Donaldson were only reinforced.
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Review

Sorcery for Beginners

Posted: April 18, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Fantasy, Middle Grade
Sorcery for Beginners

Owen is your average Middle Schooler: he’s ok at sports, he passes his classes, and he has a couple friends. But when his mom leaves to work in Sumatra and dad takes him to live in Las Vegas, Owen is sure life will never be the same.

Even then, he didn’t account for finding the Codex Arcanum bookstore and buying SORCERY FOR BEGINNERS. Now his life is *really* going to change.

SORCERY FOR BEGINNERS claims it’s what the title says: that this book will teach you, via story and real-life examples, how to become a sorcerer. You’ll follow Owen’s story as he buys the book after being promised the “Spell to Rewrite History” which Owen plans to use to revert to the time before his mom left.
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Review

Seriously Hexed

Posted: March 14, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Tina Connolly, Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Seriously Hexed

Cam is your typical teenager. She’s got friends, wonders how her awesome boyfriend could like such an awkward girl as her, and is frantically studying for her American History test. The only exception is that she’s a witch. However, it’s that extra complication that makes her high school years less than typical.

For example, most teenagers don’t have to deal with their mother disappearing during a coven meeting.
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Review

Burn Bright

Posted: March 6, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Like Tags: Patricia Briggs, Urban Fantasy
Burn Bright

Bran is out of town, leaving Charles in charge of the Marrok’s pack. But the situation is a little strange because he isn’t answering his phone when Charles calls. And he mentioned visiting Africa? Charles and Anna aren’t sure what’s going on, but they’re doing their best to hold down the fort until Bran decides to return… whenever that will be.

But they get a call from the mate of one of the “wildings”–which are unstable (usually old or traumatized) wolves that live in the Marrok’s territory, but are removed enough physically for the safety of the rest of the pack. Jonesy’s cryptic call leaves Charles concerned and confused, and with Anna decides to investigate.

They discover something much more than they expected.
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Review

Silence Fallen

Posted: February 9, 2018 by Vanessa in Books We Love Tags: Patricia Briggs, Urban Fantasy
Silence Fallen

A master vampire of Europe, Iacopo Bonarata, is told that Mercy is the most powerful person in the territory protected by the Columbia Basin Pack.

So, of course, he kidnaps her.
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