Piercing the Fold by Venessa Kimball (reviewed by Karmin)

Piercing the Fold

Book 1 of Piercing the Fold series *

Venessa Kimball

Reviewed by Karmin

Book description (amazon.com):

“I’m Jesca. I have intense nightmares nightly and hallucinations of dark auras closing in on me daily. Strangers’ faces distort before my eyes and I hear voices in my head. All symptoms of insanity, ‘illusions in reality’, right? Wrong. This is my reality and it has been set askew.”

Jesca Gershon Sera discovers that she is part of a legacy and a fellowship of guardians destined to protect the human race from a galactic event that will invade and evolve our world.

*The Piercing the Fold series is intended for Mature Young Adult and Adult readers due to the the paranormal and unorthodox scientific concepts addressed throughout. This series contains a rich mixture of the paranormal, science fiction, romance, adventure, and suspense. *

Review:

I had trouble with this book. I wanted to love it, but I couldn’t. I’m not a huge fan of in-the-moment- first-person, so that is entirely personal opinion, but Kimball did switch between that and in-the-moment-third-person from time to time and it threw me off a bit. Another thing that messed with me are the physics principles she put into this book. Kimball obviously did her research, but some of the things just resonated as “wrong” (for lack of a better term) with my brain (this is not because I didn’t know what she was talking about, but rather because I DID know what she was trying to say), but I do think that had she been a bit more vague on the scientific detail, it would have worked better.

As for the story itself, it’s a cool one. You have your kickass powers, psychic-style dreaming, good vs evil, and inter-world travels. Toss in some love the characters refuse to acknowledge and possible alien invasion and it makes it fun. In all honesty, it’s NOT a TERRIBLE book whatsoever, just the few things that I personally didn’t like about it made it difficult for me to enjoy. If I were rating this book, I would give it a 4/10.

 

**Edited to add links

Before reading this book, here are a few theories to read up on (even if they are on Wiki) to help understand what the author is trying to put across (These are an afterthought of the review, and may help get a better grasp on the theories she puts forth).

Alcubierre drive http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alcubierre_drive

Einstein-Rosen Bridge http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wormhole#Schwarzschild_wormholes

Negative mass http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negative_mass

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The Timeless One by Lexy Wolfe (review by Louise)

The Timeless One

Book three of The Sundered Lands Saga by Lexy Wolfe

Review by Louise Ryan

 

Book Overview (blurb) by Amazon

 

After nearly dying with the effort to return the Timeless One’s dying Sentinel to the Fortress of Time, Illaini Magus Ash Avarian and Githalin Swordanzen Storm il’Thandar find themselves in the isolated domain of the Guardians of Time. Having faced and overcome their own prejudices, they and their companions discover that bigotry and racial prejudices have not escaped the mortal servants of the goddess of time. As they struggle to overcome traditions older than memory earn the right to be called Guardians of Time as well, they discover a malevolent evil that seeks to upset the great balance, and a tragic secret that stretches back thousands of years that could not only destroy them but the world itself.

 

Review:

 

Being the third book in the series this book has well established characters and you think you have gotten to grips with the story. Suddenly, Things change. The characters expand and change at a rate that is as shocking as it awe inspiring. The twists in the story that have been somewhat, hinted at, through the other two books, creep up on you and hit you with a bang. 

 

I really LOVE these books but the pace of this book is so fast that it left me dizzy. I found myself having to re-read certain paragraphs to make sure I had fully understood what was being said. Don’t get me wrong, this is in no way detrimental to the story but after the more sedate pace of the second book it occasionally felt hard to keep up. 

 

The story never slows and you simply cannot turn the pages fast enough. Yelling in frustration, as the characters do, at the only subtle hints and whispers of an enemy that is never clearly defined. Yet no less evil for it. 

 

I love the change in dynamics to the group that this part of the story brought with it and the new players in the game. In all honesty I cannot wait for the next book to come out. I will devour it with every bit of relish as I did with this one. 

 

If you like epic stories with myth, magic, intrigue and adventure? Seriously, GO AND BUY THESE BOOKS! This is story telling on a level I have not come across for a long time.

The Knowing One by Lexy Wolfe (Reviewed by Louise)

The Knowing One

Book Two of The Sundered Lands Saga by Lexy Wolfe

Review by Louise Ryan

Book Overview (blurb) by Amazon

After two thousand years, the Desanti god known as the Raging One had been freed from his imprisonment, releasing the Sundered Lands from chains that had been slowly tearing the fabric of reality apart.

But that hard won freedom came with a heavy price. At over 500 years old, Almek, the oldest wandering Guardian of Time, had already been feeling the weight of time. The journey and final battle served to accelerate the normal degradation of time on his body. That degradation could only be stopped with his return to Fortress, the home of the goddess of time, and returned to her embrace.

For all the power of Almek’s students, none could alter the natural course of the seasons, and the onset of winter made travel impossible. Without telling his students of the threat to him, Almek insisted they wait for the emissaries from Desantiva to recover from their near deaths. But their hard won victory could be lost if the children of Forenta and Desantiva, enemies since before the Second Sundering, cannot discover a way to bridge the chasm between their cultures in time to save their friend and master.

Review:

This book is no less greater than the first. This is story telling at it’s finest and most epic.

I couldn’t wait to find out what had happened after the end of the last book and dived into it with relish. I was not disappointed.

This book was more heart wrenching than the first. We truly see, in this book, the difficulty of a person displaced from their own place in the world. The trauma each of the different students go through, is very easy to understand and you cannot help but silently plea for them to make it through. All of us, at some time in our lives have been in a place where we felt we did not belong, and that is at the very heart of what you pulls you in here. You become as frustrated as the characters in the book when either they cannot understand something new or someone else refuses to understand them because they are different. The characters, already well rounded in the first book, become very much more alive in this one. You become closer to each of them because of it. The pace has slowed down here but that is in fitting with the story and it feels right but it is no less exciting for it.

I am so glad I found these books. If you enjoyed the first one you will not be disappointed in this part. If you didn’t read the first one? What are you doing here? Go and read it, now! It’s awesome.

The Raging One by Lexy Wolfe (Review by Louise)

The Raging One

Book One of The Sundered Lands Saga by Lexy Wolfe

Review by Louise Ryan

 

Book Overview (Blurb) by Amazon

 

Still reeling from an ancient war, the world has begun showing signs of unraveling. To save their world, a select group of the most gifted elite must form an alliance and find a solution before it is too late. But, can these historically incompatible members of the remaining nations cooperate despite their ancestral biases and distrust? Or will shadows consume them before they can succeed?

 

Review:

 

This book is one EPIC story in the making. It tells a tale of ancient history in a world torn apart by a Great War and Sibling Gods who keep the lands apart through mistrust of each other and their Human offspring. I was mesmerised from the beginning. The story jumps in head first and whisks you along for a few chapters at break neck speed. At first, the titles are slightly confusing but the author brilliantly slips in explanations to the narrative without it feeling forced. From the outset you are totally involved with these characters. You understand their confusion, their exasperation and their desperation perfectly. In a world where magic users are held in high regard and expected to keep all things in balance, they become unsure of the things happening.

 

You can’t help but be on their side. You want them to succeed. You are willing them along with everything you have. I LOVED this book! I couldn’t read it fast enough. So much so I drained my Kindle! I really felt for the characters. And adored them each in their own way. I loved the well thought out Hierarchy system in each of the lands and the beliefs that were well thought out and explained in a simple and non tedious way. At no point, did this book ever feel like “work”. It was simply epic. I cannot wait to read the next one.

 

In short, If you like fantasy books, with myth, magic, epic story telling, a dash of romance and the odd dragon? Then you simply MUST read this book!

Darrion a Tale of Tir Athair by Marissa Ames

Darrion, a tale of Tir Athair

Marissa Ames

reviewed by Karmin

 

Book description (amazon.com)

A short story set in the world of Tir Athair. The first time Darrion struck her, Lana loaded her wagon and left Cynegil. Two-year-olds should not hit like that. She draped the windows of her cottage with dense cloth and worked by a single candle. If she timed her flight well, she could pass through the market during changing of the guard. In another era, under another king’s reign, Lana would have rejoiced that Darrion had inherited his father’s gift. Now, if Lana does not present her son to the king, she could lose her head.

 

Review

A short story of a mother’s struggle to keep her mage-gifted son safe, Ames quickly sucks you into the sadness that is covering the land. The story bounces between past and present seamlessly and you quickly come to love the characters within and it is a great lead-up to Ames’ newly released novel Minstrel (to be reviewed within the next month!). If you’re looking for a story that will give you a glimmer of hope, this is definitely worth the $1!

 

http://www.amazon.com/Darrion-Marissa-Ames-ebook/dp/B00FPOSXV4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1384981272&sr=8-1&keywords=Darrion

Kojiki by Keith Yatsuashi (reviewed by Karmin)

Book description (amazon.com)

When eighteen-year-old Keiko Yamada’s father dies unexpectedly, he leaves behind a one way ticket to Japan, an unintelligible death poem about powerful Japanese spirits and their gigantic, beast-like Guardians, and the cryptic words: “Go to Japan in my place. Find the Gate. My camera will show you the way.”

Alone and afraid, Keiko travels to Tokyo, determined to fulfill her father’s dying wish. There, beneath glittering neon signs, her father’s death poem comes to life. Ancient spirits spring from the shadows. Chaos envelops the city, and as Keiko flees its burning streets, her guide, the beautiful Yui Akiko, makes a stunning confession–that she, Yui, is one of a handful of spirits left behind to defend the world against the most powerful among them: a once noble spirit now insane. Keiko must decide if she will honor her father’s heritage and take her rightful place among the gods.

Review:

Kojiki is a fast-paced story, filled with multiple points of view and colorful characters. Gripping in just the right spots with plenty of action for this kind of story. Keiko is confused by her father’s last wish and takes off to Japan to discern his meaning, setting off events that could mean the end of our world. It’s a non-stop rush to defeat the long-awaited Lon-Shan and Vissyus. Yatsuhashi takes you on a ride filled with Spirits and Guardians, Light and Dark with plenty of twists to keep you on the edge of your seat. Well written and beautifully described scenes give you the sense you are right there with the characters. I love books that throw a twist to accepted mythologies and real places, and Kojiki has done that. Yatsuhashi does a wonderful job of catching your full attention when you least expect it. I began this book thinking that it would take quite a while, at least 3 chapters, for Keiko to find the gate (and really start the story) her father sent her to find, yet half-way through the first chapter, BOOM! There it is! There’s plenty to keep you interested and I  recommend Kojiki to anime and fantasy lovers looking for something new.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Kojiki-Keith-Yatsuhashi-ebook/dp/B00CF6317Q/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1384230892&sr=8-3&keywords=Kojiki

Tears of War by A.D. Trosper (reviewed by Karmin)

I absolutely loved Embers at Galdrilene, and was excited (but apprehensive) for Tears of War, Trosper proved my apprehension wrong with this book! She takes you more in-depth with the characters (both the naughty ones and our heroes), and introduces new characters that simply make it hard to choose a favorite! Trosper has a very unique writing style that makes you turn the page, no matter how early in the morning it is, you simply can’t stop reading. With such a great story, most people would think that it would be hard to remember every character in each point of view, but Trosper writes in such a way that every person’s actions are burned into your memory.

Tears was most definitely worth waiting for. The world Trosper has created is inviting, terrifying, and fantastical. The Shadow Riders and their dragons are terrible, the malevolence of some just twist your stomach and truly make you feel that you are in their presence. The Gaurdians and their dragons fill you with such love and caring it can nearly bring you to tears.

Tears of War is a WONDERFUL book, in my opinion even better than Embers! With the characters trying to save (or, in the case of the baddies, destroy & control) the world, there’s plenty of love, loyalty, betrayal, surprise, and of course with any book with a title of “war”, fighting, Tears has something for all fantasy readers. I highly recommend it for the lost fantasy-novel lover.