When I started reading ‘The Challenge’ I was aware of any of Cas Peace’s previous work. And I am so sorry about that.
‘The Challenge – Circle of Conspiracy Book One’ is the fourth book in the triple trilogy Artesans of Albia fantasy series. And it is an amazing fantasy book!
It’s well written, well-paced, and full of twists of plot and the reader never gets bored. Cas Peace has done magnificent job creating a fantasy word, described in great details.
The characters reach out and grab your interest, once you start reading, you don’t want to put it down.
I loved Brynne Sullyan, the main female characters. She’s clever, she’s witty, she’s strong and fearless. What an A-female!
Now I know that my Christmas reads will be: the rest of Artesans Of Albia series books!
Friend against friend, lover against lover, ally against ally. Conflict is coming …
Nine months have passed since Brynne Sullyan helped forge an alliance between the realms of Albia and Andaryon. A fragile peace reigns as both sides recover from the events of the previous year. Then mysterious raiders strike Andaryon villages. Attempts are made on the life of Albia’s High King. As Sullyan scrambles to find those responsible, unseen enemies threaten to pull apart everything she has worked for, including her marriage.
The alliance begins to crumble, and Sullyan finds herself caught between two monarchs: the king she’s sworn allegiance to, and the man she loves as a father. To betray either one would break her heart, but if conflict is inevitable, she must make a choice…
Artesans of Albia Series Synopsis
On a foolhardy foray into a foreign realm, Taran Elijah is attacked by a terrible weapon known as the Staff. Killing its wielder, he escapes into Albia, inadvertently carrying the Staff.
Concerned by the vicious raids that follow Taran’s actions, Major Sullyan of the High King’s forces crosses into Andaryon to seek diplomatic resolution to the crisis. She is captured and tortured by Lord Rykan, aspirant to the Andaryon throne.
Slowly dying, Sullyan escapes his clutches. She offers her skills to the Hierarch in defense of his throne, finally confronting Rykan on the field of battle.
Her handsome Captain and lover, Robin Tamsen, embarks on a desperate quest to recover the Staff. But Rykan’s greedy General, Sonten, is two steps ahead of him. If Robin cannot lay hold of the weapon before Sonten does, Sullyan’s life and the lives of all Artesans are forfeit.
The race for the Staff has begun.
About Cas Peace:
Cas Peace was born in Hampshire UK, in 1957, and has lived there most of her life. Her first career was as a horse-riding instructor, and horses remain very close to her heart. She then spent 13 years working for the British Civil Service before leaving the UK to live in Italy for three years, 1991-1994. She speaks passable but by no means perfect Italian, and loves to return to Italy whenever she can.
Cas’s other great loves are anything to do with animals, especially dogs and horses, (she supports many animal charities) and also singing.
Cas loves folk songs and along with her husband, who plays guitar, has performed in many a Southern England folk club. Sometimes they even asked her back! She writes folk songs to accompany her fantasy novels, and offers them as free downloads from her website.
To Buy Link
The Challenge Amazon.com
ARTESANS Series Book Trailer
The Past Never Stays Where it Belongs! In Westwood, California, was where John Francis, the town’s priest re-encountered the beast. To his astonishment, horrifying events began unraveling before him. These unprovoked occurrences soon turned to fright when Sister Teresa’s body was found murdered. When Kathy Riego stepped into the Sister’s shoes she showed him a renewed identification for the word love. John began this new relationship with a masked reality as the horrid beast began showing him a long forgotten past that was supposed to be buried long ago.
Night Crawler by Candy O’Donnell is a beautiful, magical, and slightly terrifying tale. A priest with six-pack abs, a blond bombshell with twinkling blue eyes, a “Dumb-ass redneck”, a red-eyed strange animal, the mysterious death f a nun and a series of incomprehensible events that haunt a small town: what to not be liked?
This is rapid-paced suspenseful story spiced with romance and with a satisfying ending. A great reading for Halloween!
My rate: 4.3*
Candy O’Donnell was born in Carmichael, California.
At the age of twelve, she wrote her first mini book. Filled mostly with what took place with her mother and her long tedious bout with leukemia. It was a short story told as extra credit when she suffered a sprained ankle and had to be out of school for over two months. School officials refused to believe a word of what she had written until her grandmother, her guardian back then, entered the school with the truth. Everything she had written down was exactly what took place. Unfortunately her mother succumbed to the disease.
She earned a Bachelor’s degree in History and Culture. After living with her aunt and uncle for over five years she wished to explore her uncle’s Native heritage and did so with vigor. She also has 6 Grad units in Criminal Justice. Someday she might go back and finish her Master’s.
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When I signed up for the Legends and Lore Anthology Blog Tour I asked Becca & Sarah from Loving the Book Launch Party, who are the Tour organisers, to review Charon’s Obol by. R. M. Ridley. I didn’t know what the story was about, or I should say that what I only knew was what the short description says: “Jonathan Alvey didn’t believe in gods, until he helps a lost child find her all-powerful parents.”
But a word was what intrigued me: Charon.
In Greek mythology, Charon (Greek: Χάρων) is the ferryman of Hades who carries souls of the newly deceased across the rivers Styx and Acheron that divided the world of the living from the world of the dead.
So, it was a pleasant surprise to find out that this story, part of the Legends and Lore Anthology, is inspired by Greek Mythology.
As much as I felt a proud Greek, I was even more delighted because what I read was a fast paced, well constructed and beautifully written story. R. M. Ridley’s writing style has many to do with this because the author knows how to engage the audience.
I haven’t read yet the rest of the book, but if tit has the quality Charon’s Obol has, I’m sure it’ll be a great success.
Q&A with R.M.Ridley
How did the idea for this story come to you?
As for every story I write, it starts with an image, or moment of dialogue, that my Muse slaps into my head and I just let it unfurl from there. In this case, it was the image of a little girl standing in door to Alvey’s office.
What makes your main character unique?
He’s almost an anti-hero. He wants nothing more than to sit in his office smoking, drinking, and reading but the universe keeps throwing things in life which he’s just can leave alone because he’s driven by a sense of duty and of guilt.
Is this part of a series?
Yes. This is a short story set in the White Dragon Black series. The first story to see print from this world was in last years paranormal anthology, ‘Shades and Shadows’ and then the full length novel ‘Tomorrow Wendell’ came out in June of this year.
When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?
I have written stories for as long as I can remember. I didn’t want to devote the majority of life to it until about fifteen years ago, however. It wasn’t until the character of Jonathan Alvey came along, four years ago, that I said I need to get this published.
What have you written?
I write urban fantasy / paranormal and horror. I have completed four novels that have never even been submitted anywhere and a stack of short stories. I have had a few of my short stories published, both the paranormal and the horror.
What are you working on?
Currently I am working on the edits of the second White Dragon Black novel, ‘Bindings & Spines, as well as writing the fifth novel in the series. I am also working with Xchyler on a secret project for fans of the White Dragon Black series.
How do you write? Longhand, typewriter, laptop, tablet?
My hand writing is atrocious, I can’t even read it half the time, so I use a laptop. A lap top also makes it easier for me to write in the style that I do, which is non-chronological. I flit from beginning, to end, to middle— all over the place– where ever the inspiration hits, I write that scene and eventually it all gets woven together.
What is your writing zone and how do you get there?
If my Muse is with me, I’m writing. If she steps out for coffee, I’m useless – I can’t write a thing. I’m just a conduit for her idea’s.
What’s the hardest thing about writing?
Not writing. Every moment you are not working with the words, for whatever reason, is the hardest part of writing.
What’s the easiest thing about writing?
When it all suddenly clicks – when the whole picture snaps into place and you understand everyone’s motives, reasons, and, minds, then it just flows out like and open tap.
What are you currently reading?
I’m working my way through the entire collection of Raymond Chandler’s short stories.
Do you prefer reading eBook or paperback?
I have never even tried reading from an eBook, so that probably says something.
What advice do you have for fellow writers?
Learn to love editing. See edits as the flips side of writing – still creative, still full of possibilities – and every aspect, from the first word written, to the first word printed, will be a joy.
R.M. Ridley lives in rural Ontario on a small homestead, raising a menagerie of animals, including a flock of sheep and a swarm of foul. He has been writing stories, both long and short, for three decades, the themes of which range from the gruesome to the fantastical. As an individual who suffers from severe bipolar disorder, R.M. Ridley is a strong believer in being open about mental health issues because myths should be kept to stories.
Link to the Publisher’s page: http://www.xchylerpublishing.com/site.cfm/Our-Books/Legends-and-Lore.cfm
The Fall by Stephen Cost has a great advantage and a quite important disadvantage. Its main weapon is Mr Cost’s writing. Poetic, elegant and sophisticated makes the reader want to absorb every well described detail and makes this book a pleasant reading experience. It reminded me the great noir novels of the past. And in my opinion, that’s exactly its main problem. It’s not a noir novel, it’s a paranormal one. I believe Mr Cost’s intention was to give a breath of fresh air in paranormal genre, and he would have succeeded if the pace of the first half of the book wasn’t that slow.
There are some scenes like the airport one, that despite the fact they are exceptionally described, they seem to be dropped into the plot for no reason. The real action begins with “the fountain of the four soldiers” incident. Since I got there I didn’t want to put this book down. If only the entire book had the pace the last 30 pages have…
I would like to read more from Stephen Cost. I believe that if he adds more twists of plot in his stories, he’ll make a great neo-noir author.
My rate: 4*
By: Stephen Cost
For thousands of years, Death walked behind the dark veil of the living, waiting to ferry the dead. That is, until the day that Death took a life for pleasure rather than duty. On that day, the first Reaper fell to Earth. Now, Reapers live among us, craving the taste of death, forcing them to kill to satisfy their immortal hunger.
Giles Reid fell more than 300 years ago starving for the taste of death, only to find himself drowning in a sea of the living and blinded by a hunger that forces him to kill. In the centuries since his fall he has tried to be more human, desperate to live a life that makes up for what he is and the wrong he has done. Driven by his guilt over killing, he has chosen to feed only on evil; humans that have never been a threat to him but who are always a danger to others. That is, until the day he tries to feed on a human as strong, fast and cunning as himself; a human who, it turns out, has been hunting him. Now he is being pursued by the very evil he has fed on for centuries, embroiled in a deadly cat-and-mouse game, where friends and other Reapers connected to him are simply pawns on a chessboard waiting to be sacrificed. Giles is left with a choice, save the life of the women he loves, the daughter of his mentor, or betrays her for his own survival.
To save the woman he loves, Giles will have to be the monster he is.
The author has lowered the price of the book just for the tour! If you like a paranormal novel full of suspense with demons and a twist of thriller, grab your copy and make sure you let your friends know too! With a proof of purchase, you will also get 10 extra entries in the Rafflecopter.
Stephen Cost was born in Wexford Ireland and raised in a small seaside town not far from Dublin. From a young age he would spin dark tales and write them down for his own amusement. At the age of 13 he moved from his home in Ireland to America and his love of dark American cinema took root.
He passes his free time, when not writing, by reading horror and fantasy genre novels in addition to watching science fiction and horror movies.
He graduated from University with a degree in Psychology and a minor in Sociology. A computer engineer by trade, he specializes in integrated system services and uses the knowledge gained from his degree to write emotionally captivating urban fiction.
Nobody is perfect, they say. Well, Brook is determined to achieve perfection whatever it takes. Whatever, literally. As Jenifer Ruff did whatever she has to do in order to create a great psychological thriller with a dark finale as chilling as the blizzard that strikes New Hampshire at the end of the book.
Jenifer Ruff’s writing style is exquisite. I didn’t know she’s a debut author until I checked her Amazon page. Everett is her first novel but it’s like been written by an experienced author. All characters are well drawn, with their advantages and disadvantages, which we get to learn gradually. Each scene in the book is well described, that well I felt like I was in the middle of that blizzard trying to find my way through the snow and the wind.
I enjoyed very much reading this book and now I have to wait for the next one to discover what happens next and if justice will be served.
If you like reading psychological thrillers, practicing yoga and eating healthy, this book is highly recommended to you!
My rate: 4,5*
Everett on Amazon
Everett on Goodreads
**I received an ARC from the author for an honest review. **
Debut author Gwendolyn Grace gave us a brilliantly crafted story about true feelings and the importance of second chances.
I immediately connected with the story and characters. I loved the flashbacks on how the love story between the main characters began. All those flashbacks added anticipation to the story as I found myself waiting for something big to happen. The author has a liking to dialogues and the pace of the story was fast. Sometimes I felt like I was reading a movie! But most important True is about real life situations. The readers might recognize a situation they, or someone they know, have been into at some time in their lives.
I’m giving True 4.3 stars and I am looking forward to Gwendolyn Grace’s next book.