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Gambling Spells: Book Review

grimoire - Gambling Spells: Book Review A Grimoire for Gamblers
The Trove Arbitrations Book 1
Amanda Creiglow
Mystery and Thrillers, SciFi and Fantasy
Waldron Lake Books , BooksGoSocial
Pub Date 27 May 2021 | Archive Date 6 Jun 2021 BooksGoSocial
three star - Gambling Spells: Book Review

Magic may be secret, but it’ll kill you anyway.

Small town mayor’s assistant Elizabeth has enough on her plate grieving her father’s suicide. She doesn’t need his stash of magical knowledge in the attic. She doesn’t need the hidden supernatural subculture of monsters it pulls her into. And she certainly doesn’t need hints that her father’s madness might have been a smokescreen for something far darker.

But uncovering her father’s secrets could be the only way Elizabeth can stop a string of suspicious suicides… if the local wizard doesn’t rip the memories out of her mind, first.

Wizards, right?

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What is the definition of a Grimoire I wonder? Certainly, here a ‘Trove’ of papers was found in which a number of spells and ways to undertake magic were written. In many languages, by many hands. It had been collected and was being kept by a person who then died.

Once discovered, many in the magical world wanted this trove as it was rare but the girl finding it was not about to give it up.

This gave rise to a number of accidents, incidents and other magical occurrences. Elizabeth is trying to cope with her father’s suicide and the discovery of his trove and the reason for his suicide hits her hard. She struggles to know who to trust and who can help her understand what happened.

In may respects this is a simple story in the genre of being accidentally magical in adulthood with accompanying issues. The difference mainly being that Elizabeth is not a born witch coming into her powers but rather a mundane using what she finds to join the magical world.

Whilst interesting in its difference, it was not such that I feel compelled to follow up the storyline.

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Theatres in small towns: Book Review

miranda - Theatres in small towns: Book Review Miranda Rewritten
Durango Street Theatre Series, Book 7
by Emily Mims
Women's fiction, Contemporary fiction
Boroughs Publishing Group
Pub Date 29 Jun 2021
four star - Theatres in small towns: Book Review

THE BEST KEPT SECRETS

Durango's production manager, Miranda Jenks is straightforward and honest. She deals with life head-on no matter what it brings, and she's not afraid to speak her mind. But... she's been harboring a soul-destroying secret for years, and when Ross Ellis returns to town to try to clean up his mess, she can't tell him the truth.

Ross has made more mistakes than he can count, and all of them are worse than horrible. The only reason he's bothered to come back to his farm is for his teenage daughter, and he hopes like hell she'll let him make amends.

Miranda is the last person he'd thought would forgive him, and as they spend more time together he finds they fill each other's gaps. Until he uncovers the lies she's been keeping for years.

Two lonely people who understand each other better than most must find a way to heal the breach or they'll never get to the happy they're reaching for.

 This is a small town romance with Miranda being the starring character of the story and also the general manager of the small town theatre company around which the story circulates.

We also have a character who managed to have Covid very severely and so this story was written during the pandemic.

The book covers a wide range of issues that could affect a person, from how alcoholism can affect lives until the nth generation. It is not true, although often said, that alcoholism is a reflection of an addictive personality. It is not. What people have is a Substance Use Disorder, to which genetics can contribute 40-60% of the likelihood of a person acquiring it. But it is not set in stone that will happen. But it is more likely when the person also has a mental health condition which affects them.

The story begins with Miranda pondering the fact that she covered up for her best friend who died in a terrible car accident. At the time her friend was coming back from committing adultery with Miranda’s brother, but she permitting her friend’s husband and the family to believe that instead she had been coming back from a late session with the local amateur dramatic society. Her friend Renee had a daughter who Miranda loved, but also an alcoholic abusive father, who blamed the theatre company for his wife’s death and refused to let his daughter become involved. And who then disappeared so that his daughter had to live with her grandparents.

One reason that Miranda championed Emma was because she had remained a stalwart friend to Miranda’s young son who had dies of childhood cancer.

So the story starts with grief and emotional issues upfront.

Miranda however, as the story proves, is a forgiving soul and likes to help others as it mitigates her sorrow at her son’s death.

We thus have a cast of characters with many faults and issues to deal with. Which are covered empathetically. The style draws you in and the rawness of the emotions keeps you reading. Overall, this book would be good to read if you are in a similar situation to young Emma, as the trauma caused by SUD is covered in such a way that it can be easily understood, and the awareness that this is not an illness that can be cured, but rather one that needs constant attention and work.

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Don’t listen when they scream! Book Review

banshee - Don't listen when they scream! Book Review Banshee Cry: A Steamy Paranormal Fantasy Romance
Jen Katemi
Paranormal Fantasy Romance Sci Fi & Fantasy
Flourish Books
Pub Date 9 Nov 2020 |
four star - Don't listen when they scream! Book Review

This banshee will do anything to save those she loves. Even climb into bed with her enemy. Worthless. Useless. Helpless. That's how I feel. A banshee without a voice. Well, half banshee and half human, and my human side failed my father, Got him killed. But that was a long time ago... Now, there's a sexy vamp on my doorstep wanting me, needing me. He's the hottest being I've ever laid eyes on. His blood sings to mine, in ways I can't explain, and in ways, I am determined to uncover. But with my past, my fear, my pain, I want to stake him--right through his cold, undead heart. If we don't team up, everything I know and love will be gone, Just like before. This time, I will do anything to be heard, With or without that banshee cry.

There are 2 books to be reviewed here – Banshee Cry and Banshee Song, although there is a 3rd in the series, Banshee Power. It is the Blood Fae Chronicles series.

A fantasy novel which takes on a Banshee as a main character which is so different from a witch or a were or…

The thing we all know about Banshees, is that they cry when a death is to happen. Well not so much a cry as a scream. Except that our heroine Banshee has a very soft voice. So not much use as a warning. And she is only part Banshee, the other part is immortal Fae. Which means she has powers.

A good set of fantasy stories. With lots of different Fae and other creatures. Some battles/fights, some power plays, and other normal issues between the various races.

If you like fantasy, then read the 3 books

BLOOD FAE CHRONICLES:
Book 1 – BANSHEE CRY
Book 2 – BANSHEE SONG
Book 3 – BANSHEE POWER

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Hotel Void: Book Review

void - Hotel Void: Book Review A Void of Magic
Kennedy Rain, Book 1
by Sandy Williams
General Fiction (Adult) | New Adult | Sci Fi & Fantasy
Victory Editing
four star - Hotel Void: Book Review

They trusted her to keep the peace between the paranorms. They made a mistake.

Kennedy escaped the family business when she turned eighteen. Now, an ill-timed vacation pulls her back to The Rain Hotel, the only known null zone on the planet. It’s a place where vampires can see the sun rise and werewolves can avoid the lure of the full moon. And it would be the perfect place for a paranormal wedding…if the bride wasn’t the local alpha’s daughter and the groom the scion of a vicious master vampire.

With a sexy werewolf determined to sabotage the wedding and dark forces threatening The Rain, Kennedy’s life is thrown out of balance when she’s forced to confront a past she swore to avoid. Ultimately she must choose: will she maintain the stability of the supernatural world…or will she destroy it.

This is another is the genre of providing an hotel for paranormals. With the difference that in this hotel there was a magical void – that is the magic that made the wolves or vampires into their paranormal selves was missing and thus during their stay they were just ‘normal’ human beings.

This meant that if for instance you had a werewolf that had ‘moon madness’ – a state where they forgot their human side completely, a stay st the hotel restored it. And that vampires could eat ‘human’ food rather than blood.

It was set up by a treaty many hundreds of years past with one family and their descendants eoing the inn-keepers by trade and the wolves and the vampires trading places every week. Other paranormals came to stay also but were not as constrained as these two branches.

Our heroine is trying not to be an inn-keeper – at least not yet. So she was studying at university, but got called back when trouble arose and her parents had gone on holiday. A wolf and a vampire decide to marry and have their wedding at the hotel. This breaks all the treaties as the 2 races were not meant to mingle.

And so the mystery begins and the trouble escalates.

I enjoyed this story as it was nicely written and the characters were well enough drawn. It is of course, the first in a series but book 2 is not out for another year (July 2022).

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Dining Club: Book Review

Willow
The Pepper Lane Club #1
Grace Parks
Pub Date 19 Apr 2019
three star - Dining Club: Book Review

She's the movie. He's the book.

A bubbly personality and a great job in social media doesn't mean that Willow Lawson has it all. Her love life is a distant memory and her social life is only work related. She starts the Pepper Lane Club as a chance to step away from her busy schedule once a month to reconnect with her friends. Thomas Greer, the proprietor of the Pepper Lane Café, annoys her. He’s her complete opposite; unsociable, serious, old-fashioned and dead set against social media. Always game for a challenge, Willow decides to take him on as a client. She’s going to prove to Thomas that he needs her help.

She knew she would be successful, she just didn’t know she would lose her heart along the way. Can Willow fall in love with a man that doesn’t respect her profession? Will Thomas let go of his preconceptions long enough to get to know the real Willow?

Enjoy this sweet romance as Willow finds love and friendship in the first book in the Pepper Lane Series.

So, the Pepper Lane Club is a dining club of women at a pizza café – Pepper Lane. The star of the book is a social media maven and decides she needs to help the owner of he café, and his friend Eric, to get more customers through promotion in social media. And it works. But obviously, also changes the nature of the original establishment. Possible to the good, or not, depending on how much you valued the original atmosphere.
This book will appeal to those who like a contemporary novel set in modern technology terms and how it can change lives.
I was not so keen and thought it rather shallow.

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