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Clockwerk and Mapwerk?

The Watchmaker's Daughter Book Cover The Watchmaker's Daughter
Glass and Steele #1/#2
C.J. Archer
Historical Crime, Thrillers & Mystery,  Romance, Fantasy
C.J. Archer
June 28, 2016
380

DESCRIPTION India Steele is desperate. Her father is dead, her fiancé took her inheritance, and no one will employ her, despite years working for her watchmaker father. Indeed, the other London watchmakers seem frightened of her. Alone, poor, and at the end of her tether, India takes employment with the only person who'll accept her - an enigmatic and mysterious man from America. A man who possesses a strange watch that rejuvenates him when he's ill. Matthew Glass must find a particular watchmaker, but he won't tell India why any old one won't do. Nor will he tell her what he does back home, and how he can afford to stay in a house in one of London's best streets. So when she reads about an American outlaw known as the Dark Rider arriving in England, she suspects Mr. Glass is the fugitive. When danger comes to their door, she's certain of it. But if she notifies the authorities, she'll find herself unemployed and homeless again - and she will have betrayed the man who saved her life. With a cast of quirky characters, an intriguing mystery, and a dash of romance, THE WATCHMAKER'S DAUGHTER is the start of a thrilling new historical fantasy series from the author of the bestselling Ministry of Curiosities, Freak House, and Emily Chambers Spirit Medium books. KEYWORDS: historical mystery, historical fantasy, victorian era, victorian fantasy, steampunk, historical romance, paranormal romance, romantic fantasy, paranormal fantasy, magic, fantasy mystery, wild west, oulaws, victorian romance, alternate reality, magical realism

The Watchmaker’s Daughter/The Map Maker’s Apprentice

Part of the Glass and Steele series #1 and #2

I initially thought that these were Clockwerk Urban/Steampunk novels but realised soon that we were actually talking about the alternate Victorian London where there was magic. So I was slightly disappointed at beginning.

But …. then I liked the stories in these 2 books but agree with some reviewers that the language used was not typical English Victorian, but this didn’t bother me as this was not ‘our’ Victorian world after all.

We did see the typical prejudice of the time against women played out well and hidden beneath it, we finally discover, is the prejudice against craftsmen who have a different and rather special skill – magic.

Book #1 was rather slow at times but I did buy the follow on book – however,  found myself not bothered enough to read any more of this series.  Book 1 was better than book 2 in my opinion. Book 2 was repetitive of book 1 and the theme not as strong.

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Not so godly as it would seem

Orphanage of the Gods Book Cover Orphanage of the Gods
Helena Coggan
sci-fi, horror
Hodder & Stoughton
September 19, 2019
416

 In the glass city of Amareth, on a hill above a river, is an orphanage patrolled by soldiers with guns. Inside are the children left behind by the long-ago war in which humans all but wiped out their gods. Until they grow up, no one will know which are human, and which are not. Children who reveal hidden powers vanish from their beds. The Guardsmen discover every god, in the end. No one has ever escaped - until now. One day Hero, a seventeen-year-old half-god, breaks out of the orphanage and flees north with her brother Joshua. But the murderous Guard are on their tail, and they have something Hero wants desperately: her sister Kestrel, held captive in a towering stone prison in the northern sea. To survive and rescue Kestrel, Hero must outwit more than just the Guard. Lying in wait for them are a ragged band of gods-in-hiding, who promise help in exchange for eternal loyalty. Hero does not want to trust them - but as winter draws in and even Joshua begins to turn against her, her world starts to feel impossibly dangerous . . . ************ Praise for Helena Coggan's 'The Catalyst' 'This year's Divergent' - Sun 'A phenomenal achievement . . . assured, frightening, action-packed' - Observer 'A pulsing, labyrinthine, emotionally visceral plot' - Metro

I tried very hard to read this book as it seemed like a great concept and storyline. However, in my opinion, the actual writing style and complicated plot lines that confused me, made it a difficult read. I abandoned it about 50% of the way through as I felt it was not worth trying to complete.

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A Spell lies under?
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A Spell lies under?

Under Your Spell 
Cajun Demons MC
by Cynthia Rayne
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
 Publication date: December 17th 2018

Chloe
After my grand-mère was murdered, I returned to Bayou Noir to find the killer, because the police won’t do their freaking jobs. And I have just one suspect, Xavier Richelieu. But I forgot just how crazy the folks in my old hometown can be. A voodoo priestess, a supposed vampire, and a grumpy gator are on the loose. I don’t believe in crazy supernatural stuff, but I am worried about seeing my old crush again, Saint. And I should be. Somehow, he’s even more drop dead gorgeous than I remember. 

Saint
I’m a member of the Demons MC, Cajun Chapter and I’ve got better things to do than follow Chloe around who seems bound and determined to get herself killed. But someone needs to watch her back and I don’t see anyone else lining up to do the job. Once upon a time, she was a chubby kid with a school girl crush. Now, she’s a mouthwatering woman, who wants nothing to do with me. One way or the other, I’m gonna help her avenge her grand-mère and sweet talk her into my bed. Maybe not in that order.  

 EXCERPT

 “Now, you have to let me touch you. I’ll take care of you and you don’t have to do a thing.”

Despite myself, my noble intentions started to crumble under the onslaught. I’d be lying, if I said I wasn’t tempted to take him up on his offer—the promise of pleasure, without any strings.

But I didn’t trust him. Saint had an agenda. If I let him touch me, he’d want more. Who are you kidding? You’d want more, too.

“I thought we agreed to be friends earlier.”

“It’s what you wanted, not me. Come on, Little Bit, all you’ve gotta do is say the word. I’ll take care of everything else.” 

Saint? or Demon?

The way he looked at me, set me on fire.  The front door was still open and for a second, I thought about dashing out of it, so I could avoid this discussion.

But I had to shut this down. “I appreciate your impression of Lucifer with the apple, but I’m not an idiot.”

“What do you mean?”

 “Don’t play dumb, Saint. You’re betting I’ll get carried away and let you do anything you want.” And I would. When I got turned on, I’d forget to be upset with him.

“I don’t have a clue what you’re talkin’ about.”  His eyes widened in shock, as though the idea had never occurred to him. “This is all about you. Not me.”

“Well, I know myself. Once we started down this road, I wouldn’t be able to refuse.” 

His expression was wolfish. “Then you should definitely let me make you cum.”

Excerpt 2

“So, is Chloe rentin’ this place out to you?” Saint asked.

“Chloe?” The sound of my own name startled me so much, I dropped the keys.

Saint bent and picked them up, before handing them to me. I glanced up, meeting those startling, swallow-me-whole blue eyes. Somehow, I couldn’t look away.

 Saint cleared his throat. “What was I sayin’? Right. Chloe’s the girl who owns this place. Her grandmother passed a few weeks ago. She must’ve rented it out to you.”

“Oh, uh, um, yes.” The lie clogged my throat, and I had to force the words out.

“What’s wrong?” He studied my face.

“Nothing. I’m fine.”

And then his eyes widened. “Wait a minute. No.”

“What?”

“Holy shit.” Saint stabbed an accusatory finger at me. “You’re her.”

“Who?” I played dumb, desperately clinging to the plan.

“No fuckin’ way.” He backed off. “You’re Chloe!”

“Yes, but—”

“But you’re…Little Bit.” He trailed off.Saint had given me the nickname when I was a kid because I’d been short. Not to mention, round. “No, I can’t do this. It ain’t right.” Saint shook his head as if trying to clear the cobwebs away.“Sorry. I have to go.”

Saint raced back down the path. He straddled his motorcycle and then took off, leaving a cloud of dirt and smoke in his wake.

And I was left on the front porch, watching him leave.

Well, that didn’t go according to plan.

  Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42653926-under-your-spell?ac=1&from_search=truePurchase:Amazon: https://amzn.to/2LcJEkK

AUTHOR BIO:

Cynthia Rayne is a USA TODAY bestselling author of the Black Star Security, Kinky Security, Lone Star Mobster, and the Four Horsemen MC Series. While Cynthia was born and raised a damn Yankee in Ohio, her parents hail from Dixie, and she grew up on homemade buttermilk biscuits and southern wisdom. In her spare time, she enjoys shopping, reading way too many romance novels, and drinking a truly obscene amount of coffee.
Author links: http://www.cynthiarayne.com/https://twitter.com/RayneCynthiahttps://www.facebook.com/cynthiarayneauthor/https://www.facebook.com/groups/122768298075763/https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2030751.Cynthia_Raynehttp://eepurl.com/cKmtIr

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After the Apocalypse of Illness

Of Blood and Bone Book Cover Of Blood and Bone
Chronicles of The One
Nora Roberts
Fantasy, Paranormal, apocalypse, dystopian
Piatkus Books
December 4, 2018
464

Thirteen years ago, a catastrophic pandemic known as The Doom killed billions. For those left behind, it is a chance to build a new world. But The Doom was no ordinary virus. In some survivors, it awoke strange powers - to heal, to harm, even to predict the future. Fallon Swift has no memories of the old world - but she is destined to shape this new one. Growing up with her three brothers on a quiet farm, she has been protected from danger by her mother and stepfather. Now she must leave them, and learn to fight. Because Fallon is not only a powerful 'Uncanny' - she also has a pivotal role to play in the bloody battles ahead. A war between good and evil is brewing, and Fallon - young, tough, headstrong - must be ready. A sequel to the number one bestselling Year One, this breathtaking novel of love, war, family and magic is a gripping and deeply satisfying continuation of an extraordinary new trilogy.

I am reviewing here both Year One and Of Blood and Bone #2 in this series.

This is a new series by Nora roberts, and for me, it combined 2 elements of her writing where I find her strong – after the apocalypse concepts; and magick. 

We are now in a world where by complete accident a virus was released that killed sme 905 or thereabouts, of the world’s population. some people were normal and immune to it, others were immune because the virus released  a magickal element held deep within them.  It may be a ‘good’ magick, but equally it can have been a ‘bad or evil magickal element. some people became faeries, others eleves or witches or shifters or…

And then some of the normal immunes were also bad – it released a really evil streak in some. and those that became so evil, hunted and killed – or in the case of some governments, experimented on, everyone else! So a seriously dangerous place to live.

In these 2 books the background is explained and then we start the fight back against the evil in the second book.

I loved them both and can’t wait for the next books to come out. For me, this is a series that has great potential and that can run and run.

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Faceless and buried altars






Lies Sleeping: Book Cover




Lies Sleeping:




Rivers of London #7





Ben Aaronovitch





urban fantasy, police procedural, contemporary




Gollancz




November 15, 2018




320



Martin Chorley, aka the Faceless Man, wanted for multiple counts of murder, fraud and crimes against humanity, has been unmasked and is on the run. Peter Grant, Detective Constable and apprentice wizard, now plays a key role in an unprecedented joint operation to bring Chorley to justice. But even as the unwieldy might of the Metropolitan Police bears down on its foe, Peter uncovers clues that Chorley, far from being finished, is executing the final stages of a long term plan. A plan that has its roots in London's two thousand bloody years of history, and could literally bring the city to its knees. To save his beloved city Peter's going to need help from his former best friend and colleague - Lesley May - who brutally betrayed him and everything he thought she believed in. And, far worse, he might even have to come to terms with the malevolent supernatural killer and agent of chaos known as Mr Punch . . .

We are back in London for this story and in form. The story takes us back to Lesley and the Faceless Man, what they are planning, and explains why.

Our favourite characters are maturing, as are their magical abilities and the talking foxes make a re-appearance with Abigail, who is proving to be more of a natural magician than anyone could have predicted. And I love the explanation of why the foxes talk – and especially  talk to Abigail.

I always very much like the way the history of London, especially the City, is incorporated into these stories. London was built on many ‘magical’ sites of worship from its early founding, and these places become integral to this modern explanation of London and its byeways, special sites, and hidden mysteries.

Indeed, many pagans and historians believe that London may well have had stone circles and standing stones that are now buried beneath the landscape and buildings, as well as religious sites for many religions, and St Paul’s Cathedral did indeed get built over an earlier pagan temple. So truth provides the foundation for great fantasy.

 

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