Category Archives: Fantasy

Book Review: “Changeling”

51s16DA-aFL

Book Reviews – “Changeling” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Molly Harper (https://www.mollyharper.com/). Ms. Harper has published more than thirty novels. This is the first in her “Sorcery and Society” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘G’. The story is set in an alternate history of sorts where magic is possible. The primary character is 14-year-old Cassandra Reed, aka Sarah Smith.

In this timeline, those with magic have risen up and taken over the world. Those without magic, the Snipes, are ‘taken care of’ by those with magic. Those with magic grow richer and more powerful, while the Snipes simply become servants and tradesman.

Smith is a Snipe and has grown up living in the Warren. She and her family serve the magical and powerful Winters family. Once Smith accidentally demonstrates a magical ability of her own, things change. Snipes are not ever supposed to have the ability to use magic. Smith, has the ability and it is powerful. The Winters change her looks and enroll her as a distant cousin in Miss Castwell’s Institute for the Magical Instruction of Young Ladies.

The Winters foster the coverup as it would be just as devastating to them as to Smith and her family for the truth to get out. Smith struggles at the school having to deal with snobby girls. She finally finds a couple of friends there who are each an outcast in their own way. Her jealous sister threatens their subterfuge and everyone is threatened by a witch that wants to raise the dead and use that army to take over the world.

I enjoyed the 7+ hours I spent reading this 271-page young adult fantasy. The characters were interesting and the plot, while not new, was well implemented. I did think that the end to the story came more quickly that it could have. The final confrontation might have been strung out a little more. Certainly, a firm footing is laid for follow-on novels in the series. The cover art is OK, but a scene from the story would have been better in my opinion. I give this novel a 4.4 (rounded down to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Advertisements

Book Review: “Time’s Children”

51ZYDtlXK8L.jpg

Book Reviews – “Time’s Children” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by D. B. Jackson (http://www.dbjackson-author.com). Mr. Jackson has published six novels. This is the first of his “Islevale Cycle” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Situations. The story is set in another world where magic is possible. The primary character is fifteen-year-old Tobias Doljan.

Doljan is a student of magic with a specialty as a Walker who can travel through time. He is sent to the court of Daerjen. The sovereign of Daerjen, Mearlan IV, asks him to Walk back in time fourteen years, far beyond what is normally allowed. Doljan agrees to take the risk and the burden of aging himself fourteen years in order to stop the war that has been going on.

Doljan survives the trip back in time, but Mearlan and his court are unexpectedly attacked and killed, disrupting the timeline. The only survivor is Doljan and Mearlan’s baby girl. Doljan, though only fifteen in the body of a thirty-year-old man, must find a way to save the princess and evade the invaders.

Doljan’s close friend and love from the magic school, Mara, senses the disruption in time when Mearlan is killed in the past. Though she has forgotten who Doljan is, she knows she must follow him into the past to correct the change in history.

Plots that span time. Magical creatures. Threats from foreign powers. This has the making of a great fantasy series.

I thoroughly enjoyed the nearly 13 hours I spent reading this 528-page fantasy. I liked the plot and the characters. I think the twist of aging those who travel through time adds to the story. I like the cover art. I give this novel a 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Short Story Review: “Sufficient Unto the Day”

Short StoriesReviews – As I sat down to have lunch today I decided to read one of the many on-line short stories I have been accumulating. This one, “Sufficient Unto the Day“, was written by Tim Powers (http://www.theworksoftimpowers.com/) and posted on the Baen Books website.

As it turns out this short story is a tale of Thanksgiving dinner with a very dysfunctional and magical family. If you have had ‘issues’ with your family this past Thanksgiving, read this short story and you will begin to look back at your Thanksgiving dinner more fondly.

The Coldharp/Hoffman family was preparing for their annual Thanksgiving celebration. A few folks were coming from out of town, while others were making an appearance from the ‘other side’. It started out well, but things began to fall apart. You know how it is – plates flying apart, silverware flying and bending, and kids being sucked into a cartoon program on TV.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 32 minutes I spent reading this seasonally appropriate fantasy short story. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

Further book reviews I have written can be accessed at https://johnpurvis.wordpress.com/blog/. 

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Epic Music: Clamavi De Profundis — Song of Durin

I have always really liked Tolkien’s stories of Middle Earth.

This is an original composition of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Song of Durin” by
Clamavi De Profundis and published to YouTube in April of 2017.

If you like Tolkien you will enjoy this!

Aethereal Engineer


~*~ Epic
~*~*~ Music
~*~*~*~ Monday!

I love epic music! For me it is a perfect combination of the classic orchestral scoring, chorales and electronica music that I have enjoyed for decades. This stuff inspires me, and is a great companion as I write away on an exciting piece of fiction.

Discover more Epic Music Mondays.

View original post

Fifty Word Fantasy: Thief

Reading – I thought that this was a great piece of Flash Fiction. It would be a good start to a fantasy novel.

Aethereal Engineer

She pondered the shimmer guarding the bookshelf, then grabbed a thin folio from it and ran.

The wizard appeared, grand and robed. “No ordinary urchin or thief steals from my library.”

The child trembled anticipating his wrath.

“It takes a wizard’s eyes to see my wards. Let me train yours.”

Copyright © 2018 by Jason H. Abbott, All Rights Reserved.

Discover more of my Fifty Word Fantasies.

View original post

Final Trailer for “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald”

Trailers – The final trailer for the next film in the world of Harry Potter is out. The movie “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” will be opening in theaters November 16. The synopsis (per IMDB):

The second installment of the “Fantastic Beasts” series set in J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World featuring the adventures of magizoologist Newt Scamander.

The synopsis doesn’t say much about the film, but the trailers I have seen look very good. I look forward to seeing the film in November.

Review of “The Blue Sky Wolves”

51NBtSNj+NL

Book Reviews – “The Blue Sky Wolves” eBook was published in 2018 (November) and was written by S. M. Stirling (https://smstirling.com). Mr. Stirling has published more than 55 novels. This is the fifth novel in his “Emberverse V Rudi’s Children” series of alternative history novels.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set nearly 50 years after ‘The Change’ with the second generation living on the altered Earth.

Crown Princess Órlaith and Japanese Empress Reiko first lead their forces in the freeing of the Hawaiian islands. Then they lead the armies of Montival and Japan respectively to Korea in a final confrontation with the occult power that was behind the Yellow Raja. Once they have landed in Korea, they meet unexpected allies there, the descendants of Genghis Khan now rising as a force to be reckoned with in Mongolia.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 11 hours I spent reading this 352-page alternative history fantasy. I have read most of the novels in the Emberverse series and have found them all enjoyable. I like the characters of Órlaith, Reiko, and their comrades. I think that Stirling has done a great job both with the plot for this series as well as with creating interesting leaders in a broken world. While this novel was filled with battles between the forces of Montival and her allies, the end seemed too easy and simple for the conclusion of this part of the series.  I do like the cover art selected for this novel. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “The Banished Craft”

51DJ3FWam8L

Book Reviews – “The Banished Craft” eBook was published in 2015 and was written by E. D. E. Bell (https://www.edebell.com). Ms. Bell has published four novels, with this being the first in her “Shkode” trilogy.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Situations. The story is set in a land of fantasy where humans and intelligent dragons exist. They each are having their separate adventures, but a common thread to them is the use of the drug ‘ha’.

There are several characters that the story follows, both human and dragon.

A world has been spit – now there are separate human and dragon worlds. The woman Cor lives in a world where women are not allowed to read or study or have a career. Yet she wants more and discovers when she tries ‘ha’ that she has powers. She is a witch.

Atesh is one of the most brilliant scientists in the dragon kingdom. His avocation is studying the plant that ‘ha’ comes from, but he is tasked by the emperor to create a deadly poison. His world is facing destruction and he is struggling to save it against all odds.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 9.5+ hours I spent reading this 346-page fantasy. I liked the human characters but I struggled with the dragon characters for some reason. The plot was a bit unique, but with it too I had a bit of a hard time. I also felt that the story ended rather abruptly. The cover art is well chosen. I give this novel a 3 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “Foundryside”

51syC6e40+L

Book Reviews – “Foundryside” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Robert Jackson Bennett (http://www.robertjacksonbennett.com). Mr. Bennett has published eight novels.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set in a world where magic exists and is one of the driving forces behind manufacturing. The primary character is Sancia Grado a young woman and a very good thief.

Grado is engaged to steal a box from a safe. Little does she know what having accomplished that will bring her. The artifact contained in the box contains powerful magic. A magic that the powerful Merchant Houses are willing to kill to obtain. She must recruit strong and unusual allies in order to survive.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 13.5 hours I spent reading this 512 page fantasy. I liked the characters and the plot of this novel and I hope to see sequels set in this universe in the future. The cover art is OK, but I can imagine art that ties more closely to the story. I give this novel a 5 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).