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Carnivals are usually noisy not silent

Ven'tarian Silence
(Of Cats And Dragons) #6
by Carol E. Leever (Author), Camilla Ochlan (Author)
Fantasy, Animals, Magic, Adventures
independently published
23 Aug. 2020

Guided by troubling visions and chased by death-dealing horrors, Omen Daenoth and the feisty talking cats find themselves center stage in the city of Ven'taria, a place of uncanny magic and jaw-dropping revelry. But when Omen and his companions -- an eminent Sundragon scholar, the notorious prince of Terizkand, a child prophet, and a paranoid Machelli spy -- unravel the dark source of the Ven'tarian Socerium's incredible powers, a desperate countdown begins.Can our young heroes and their chatty felines break the dreaded Ven'tarian Silence or will they bring on the forbidding reign of endless night?OF CATS AND DRAGONS, where the epic meets the adorable.

The next in the series about the cats and dragons and…

So off the whole crew go in a rather special ship through a wormhole and into their world’s equivalent of Venice. A city built on canals and islands but the canals aren’t smelly (wow – not like Venice in reality then, especially in August) and the city is going to hold its Carnivale – see Venice’s Carnivale – which not only has masked balls but artwork and sculpture and…

And everyone needs a mask – even the cats – and when dusk falls they find out why they not only need the masks but also why they need to have hotel rooms, and not just for the banquet.

Elephant Carnival mask stock image. Image of medieval - 110933327

Adventures befall them all as they try to help the small sprites and ethereal creatures that power the magic that runs the city (and as they realise the ship too). Take down one, take down all. And disaster comes close as there are monsters out there in the night.

A rollicking tale of trial and tribulation and terrors which follows nicely on from previous adventures. And yes, cats can fly too… I’m sure mine would love to as they find climbing fences a lot of effort!

Our own mini Tiger or great ginger cat! Oh, and he is very chatty too, but not in English…

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Medieval Forensics?

Centaur of the Crime Book Cover Centaur of the Crime
Fantasy and Forensics #1
Michael Angel
fantasy, crime, forensics, murder, mystery
Banty Hen Publishing
(17 Jan. 2014)

C.S. Lewis meets CSI...when Michael Angel presents a new series mixing magic, mystery, and forensic science - 'Fantasy & Forensics'!

She's the LAPD's best corpse-kicker. Dayna Chrissie, LAPD's leading Crime Scene Analyst, relishes finding the one clue that can solve a crime. When she finds a golden medallion on a body that's been dumped at a downtown construction site, she doesn't think it's all that unusual. Until that medallion's enchantment brings her to the magical world of Andeluvia.

She must find a killer in time to stop a war. Dayna discovers that she's been summoned to solve the murder of the realm's king before war breaks out between Andeluvia and the Centaur Realm. But no one wants peace when war offers chances for riches and glory. So Dayna ends up with a team of cast-offs: a centaur wizard with father issues, a brash griffin warrior, and the world's unluckiest magical deer.

And the trail leads where she least expects it...back home! When the trail of evidence brings Dayna and her new friends back from Andeluvia to Los Angeles, she must use all of her forensic knowledge in order to solve the case.

The price of failure? A war that will kill millions and devastate Andeluvia.

Hope she works best under pressure.

Books in the 'Fantasy & Forensics' Series:
Centaur of the Crime
The Deer Prince's Murder
Grand Theft Griffin
A Perjury of Owls
Forgery of the Phoenix
Assault in the Wizard Degree
Trafficking in Demons
A Warrant of Wyverns
The Conspiracy of Unicorns
Dragon with a Deadly Weapon

This is a 10 book series – and yes, I did read them all in one great reading splurge…

Important characters:

Dayna – the forensics expert; Grimshaw – a griffin; Liam a type of deer but not; Abbess Thea – an owl; Perrin , Holly and Destiny,

 Not to mention Fitzwilliam, Shelley and Esteban – Dayna’s boyfriend in the police.

A large cast of characters, all of whom manage to speak English, though they may have their own languages as well and also magical or ancient languages. After all, we are not on Earth are we?

Dayna is (accidentally) called into this fantasy land by a gold coin she finds in a cavity in the body she is examining at a crime scene. The coin could have been picked up by anyone, but was aimed at someone with forensics knowledge as the world she was called into was still operating as a Medieval society.  So no mechanical items, no science, but poisons and other mysterious happenings including murder that was difficult for them to find out who-dunnit.

Rather reminiscent of the Cadfael TV series (and Ellis Peters books,) with Derek Jacobi – as the monk who solved murders with medieval herbs and elementary forensics, I immediately saw the TV episodes in my mind, once I started reading these books! I liked both…

If you are going to live in a medieval palace/tower with only a fire to keep you warm and are going to spend a lot of the time riding around in cold weather, she clearly needed to think more practically.

I thought Dayna was being less than practical. Once she discovered that she could take a knapsack to and fro, I would have packed the following for her:

Caffetiere

Metal kettle for a fire

Coffee grounds

Aspirin and ibuprofen

Arnica gel and tablets

Plasters and needles and thread

Other over the counter medicines as suitable including anti-diarrhoea meds,

Other instant / dried drinks eg milk, chocolate etc

Chocolate bars

Protein bars

Apples – fresh plus assorted dried fruit

Packets of soup – instant (and other instant foods)

Lemons and limes

Fleeces

Long Johns and silk underwear

Padded riding knickers and saddle pads (fleece lined and waterproof jodhpurs)

Fleece lined wooly hat.

Thermal socks.

Neck gaiter

Waterproofs and hiking trousers that were fleece lined

Ski wear

and look at these lined riding boots – who wouldn’t want to wear them?

I enjoyed these books and binge read all 10.

5 stars for something new in the fantasy genre.

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What is a group of Gods called?

The Pantheon Prophecy Book Cover The Pantheon Prophecy
Paladin
A. Maureen Burns
Adult, Fantasy
January 20th 2020

We live in a world where demigods , gods, and Ancients from the Pantheon are sworn to protect humanity. So when an exiled member of the Pantheon decides to kill everyone on earth, a demigod knight is given the mission to stop it with the help of a human.

28 year old book store owner, Elspeth, is about to find out she’s a natural born witch when she’s approached by the immortal knight in charge of protecting her.

Luka has been offered ascension into the Pantheon as a god if he completes his mission and stops the moon from colliding with the earth but his charge doesn’t truly know the first thing about her gift of mind-reading or anything about her rightful place within the Pantheon.

Everyone on the planet will die if Elspeth and Luka can’t find a way to trust in their own abilities and work together despite their growing attraction for each other.

With all of her mind focused on the surface of the moon, Elspeth squeezed her eyes shut and felt the separation of her soul from her body. Space and time were nothing to an immortal soul and she found herself on the moon. The weightlessness was difficult to control and Elspeth felt exposed not having Kali there to guide her. It was just her and Luka and he had never daydreamed so far before so it was new to both of them. For a split second the idea of drifting into space tantalized her. Leave all her problems behind and floating away into nothingness. She stared into the void of distant stars. It pulled her as the ink stain on her soul grew a little larger.

Luka tugged her back from the edge. “Focus Elspeth. Stay with me.”

“I don’t know what just happened. The emptiness pulled me, drew me to it.”

They stood before the large rock on the edge of the meteor canyon and stared into the abyss of the tunnel. It occurred to her that it was a large risk she was taking and there were no second chances if the tunnel tore her apart.

Back in the chair, her breathing became shallow and she was squeezing Luka’s hand tight. Though they both hovered next to the tunnel she could still feel him rubbing the back of her hand with his thumb. Together in their minds, and on the surface of the moon, he turned to smile at her.

“I’m right here with you Els.”

They looked back to earth which was much closer than the last time. The haze of smoke completely surrounded earth and sent tendrils into space. The winds seemed to rage and swirl the smoke so that they could see patches of land. The destruction was catastrophic even if they did have success.

Though their bodies were back in the Citadel, they could see each other’s aura, their essence of the soul. Luka’s aura wasn’t as vivid as hers as he blocked her path to the tunnel. It was ripping into the tunnel.

“Are you sure you want to do this Els?”

“Look over my shoulder Luka. This is not about me anymore, if it ever had been. They need us now. I know you think I can’t do this but I have to give it my best shot. Kali thinks I can and I’m counting on it.”

“I don’t doubt your ability Els. I’m just not sure you have the ability to tap into all of your strength yet. We, all of us, grow into our gifts with time.”

She looked back at earth. “Time isn’t something we have a lot of right now, Luka. I must try. I have to trust that the gods chose me for a reason. I’m doing all that I can.”

Their auras floated together for a moment. Luka reached out to her and grabbed where her heart would be. “I’m here with you Els. That’s all I can do. Let’s hope it’s enough.”

Together at the edge of the tunnel both of their auras began to fray apart and get sucked into the darkness. They were pulled in bit by bit. She felt queasy back in her chair but wasn’t sure if it was a physical manifestation of the trip or the idea of getting torn to shreds. Elspeth had thought it would be a roller coaster of a ride in the tunnel with flashing lights but she was wrong. It was wrong. It was like nothing. No ability to tell up from down or left from right. Not a glimmer of light to guide her way. The tunnel had snatched her from the moon and she was alone while time stood still.

A new fear crept into her because she couldn’t even see Luka in her mind’s eye. There was no physical body to rely on and her soul was floating somewhere and going somewhere else and she had no idea. It was difficult to control her thoughts. Is this what a panic attack felt like? Even without her body, she thought her lungs were getting ripped out of her chest. She didn’t even feel an inkling of a connection to her physical body anymore. She was alone.

Then when she was unsure of how much more she could take, the darkness began to fray into a light and she finally saw the dim shimmer of Luka’s aura. It grew and grew and she focused on him until she felt the binds of the tunnel let her go.

They had landed on a different planet.

Author Bio

Maureen is an Air Force vet and world traveler. When she’s not hanging out with family, friends, and a menagerie of family pets, she’s dabbling in photography. Reading and writing have been a part of her life for just over three decades and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. This is great because this world-creator has dozens of souls living in her head that are waiting to be written down and shared with the world.

http://www.amaureenburns.com

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18967722.A_Maureen_Burns

https://www.facebook.com/AMaureenBurns

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCD7qsb1I2zjNeBOx8jumqyA/featured

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Bounce up High!

Trampolining with Dragons
An Urban Fantasy Event:Dragons and Other Mythical Creatures Book #3
Ramy Vance & SW Clarke
Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Myths,
Keep Evolving Studios
(25 Mar. 2020)

What does a girl do when the it turns out the monster who killed her family ISN'T the worst thing out there?

Tara has finally cornered the vampire-bastard who killed her family, only to face a cold hard truth. This monster isn't the only thing that goes bump in the night. There is something far worse out there.

Choose the lesser monster.

There is a great evil - one of the original evils, actually - and it also has Tara's vampire in it's sinful sites. Normally Tara would tell this new evil to get in line ... the vampire is her's to kill. But even she cannot deny that if this new evil gets its way, things would get a lot worse for the world. As in apocalyptically so...

To destroy it, Tara must fight by the vampire's side.

But joining forces with her greatest enemy may prove to be too much to bear, especially when he revenge she craves so deeply is almost within her grasp.

Ch 1 starts ‘every act was a story, and every story should start with a bang.’

And chapter 1 literally started with a bang – explosions – after this statement.

And I really like books that know how they should start. You need to be lured into the story by hook or crook – sometimes subtly, sometimes not so subtly – but each story must find a way to reach into the reader’s brain and make them want to read on.

Think about when you go into a book shop.

Or to Amazon for a book.

The first thing you see is a book cover. Bright or loud or weird or colourful or fun. Attraction 1.

Attraction 2. Comes with the blurb. On the back. Underneath. Inside the front cover. Wherever it is. It must hook you into the next stage.

And then there is the author. Attraction 3.

Attraction 4. Comes with either the opening paras or the final paras depending on which type of reader you are. Or you may already be sold. But then you can be seriously disappointed as I so often am, when I go through at least the first 2 points and then, whether or not I recognised the author, I read the opening paragraphs and/or chapter. you have been sucked in – like so many films where they show you the best bits in the trailers and the rest is nah… blah …

This series is far from that. S Clarke sold the books to me in her style and content and humour as well as her heroine. Writing with Ramy she works well.

I have read the series so far and the next in line is on order. Oh and yes, there is a part when she does go on a trampoline with a Dragon!

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Eggs and more eggs

Justice Unhatched
The Exceptional S. Beaufont #5 of 6 (so far!)
Sarah Noffke and Michael Anderle
fantasy, magic. dragons
LMBPN Publishing
(8 May 2020)

The Dragon Elite are growing more powerful.

But so are their enemies.

Dragon eggs have been stolen, but Sophia isn’t deterred.

She will get them back and make the thieves suffer.

Once she figures out where to look for them…

The stakes are higher than ever as Sophia is sent on mission after mission to help the Dragon Elite, do Subner’s bidding and also save those at the Gullington who are still cursed.

Quiet might be better, but the housekeeper for the Castle is still sick.

Sophia won’t stop until she finds a cure for Ainsley.

But to save the eggs, the housekeeper and her friends it’s going to take harnessing the strongest power in the world. And the most elusive.

Can love save everyone?

It is clear that recent events have been woven into this story – for instance social distancing and the value of toilet rolls – and authors also read in the same, and write in the same, book piles as I do. The chewing gum that makes everyone happy and compliant comes from this pile .

But then is one of the authors – note that he turns up as himself in the book – Michael Anderle – knows Ramy Vance and writes with him – see the Middang3ard books.

But seeing this world – the Middle Ages time locked dragon riders through the eyes of a young modern girl gave great twists and humour to the story, especially the conversations with her dragon. For me the series of Sophia and her dragon are really good four to five Stars.

And I think that Sarah Noffke writes excellent fantasy. I have now read all 12 of the Liv Beaufont books! I just can’t wait to find out next what the writers’ imaginations will come up with. I adore Lunis too.

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