Ulrik by Wendy L. Anderson

ULRIK

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Welcome to the book tour for Wendy L. Anderson’s latest novel, Ulrik! We have an exclusive excerpt for you and a chance to win a digital copy of the book!

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Ulrik

Rating: 4/5 stars

Genre: Fantasy, Time-Travel Romance

Publication Date: February 24th, 2021

Publisher: Infinity Publishing

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Death was the beginning of their adventure.

Drowning when his ship went down in a vicious storm, Ulrik the Viking thought it was the end. Instead, he awakens on a new and brutal Earth. Believing he was banished to this strange land by the gods as punishment, he faces the mountainous wilderness alone.

Tessa, a lonely and broken-hearted woman, dies in her sleep on her 85th birthday. She too awakens surrounded by the frightful and the unknown. Both are mysteriously thrown into new bodies facing new lives, new hopes, new dangers, and new desires.

Cast through time and other dimensions, fate has given Ulrik and Tessa a second chance at life and love. They must survive on a ruthless new world against a brutal warrior race determined to use them to conquer extinction and enter into the age of metal.  All that stands against them is ULRIK!

Add to Goodreads

Available on Amazon

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Excerpt

Ulrik sat on the bank of a cool stream that ran down the mountain where he usually hunted. He watched as the water trickled over smooth rocks and sprayed the moss-lined bank. Down the mountainside, the stream narrowed and was eventually joined by another river, widening to become a rushing, roaring froth of cold, crystal blue water flowing swiftly over rapids. His gaze followed the stream as it meandered off into the distance and gently widened into a deep slow-moving river. He listened to the different sounds the water made. The roar, as it cascaded down the waterfall further uphill, to the trickle of the stream over moss-covered rocks, and finally the faint pounding of distant rapids. The forest was raucous with sound and full of breath-taking sights.

The forest’s majesty was lost on him today. Ulrik was bored. He reached for a stone and tossed it into the stream then stood, grabbed his spear, and walked up the hill toward the lake at the bottom of the waterfall. He decided he had better find something for his supper and thought fish sounded as good as anything else.

Memories swamped him as he recalled all the times he had fished with his brothers as a young man. Those thoughts led him to contemplate, for the hundred thousandth time, his current solitary situation. By his count, it had been around two years that he lived alone in these mountains in this strange place. Being banished by the Gods he knew, enraged him and his loneliness made him feel like less of a man. Two years without speaking to another soul or without seeing another human’s face made him angry. He cursed, kicking at a stone in his path. The stone shot forward, struck a tree, and fell uselessly to the ground.

“By Odin and all the gods! I wish I had a woman!”

He cursed out loud and continued stomping up the path until he came to his usual fishing spot at the lakeside. He hefted his spear and waded into the lake, not even bothering to remove his boots.

The warm spring wind blew across his face. As he had a hundred times before, Ulrik stood still, slowed his breathing, and searched the deep emerald depths for the flicker of a silvery tail. Quick as lightning he stabbed down and, wrenching his arm back, pulled an impaled fish out of the water. He grasped the wriggling tail, pulled it from the spear blade, and threw it to the bank of the lake where it flopped, struggling to breathe as its life leached away.

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About the Author

Wendy L. Anderson is a Colorado native and mother of two boys. She has an English Degree from Regis University and writes books, short stories and poetry. Wendy is a devout reader of the classics, fantasy, sci-fi and historical fiction. She has decided it is time to write down the fantasies from her own mind. Writing about everything from fantastical worlds to the stuff of her dreams she takes her stories along interesting paths while portraying characters and worlds she sees in her mind’s eye. Her goal is to deviate from common themes, write in original directions and transport her reader to the worlds of her creation.

Wendy L. Anderson | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

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International Giveaway: Win a digital copy of Ulrik in format of choice!

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ULRIK

Blog Tour Schedule

March 15th

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

Books Rambling and Tea (Guest Post) https://booksramblingsandtea.com/

Phantom of the Library (Review) https://phantomofthelibrary.com/

March 16th

Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com

Nesie’s Place (Spotlight) https://nesiesplace.wordpress.com

Bonnie Reads and Writes (Review) https://bonniereadsandwrites.wordpress.com/

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

March 17th

@brendajeancombs (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/brendajeancombs/

Dark Whimsical Art (Review) https://www.darkwhimsicalart.com/blogs/news

Lunarian Press (Review) https://www.lunarianpress.com/

March 18th

Sophril Reads (Spotlight) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com

The Faerie Review (Spotlight) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

Book Dragons Not Worms (Review) https://bookdragonsnotworms.blogspot.com/?m=1

March 19th

@bookishkelly2020 (Spotlight) https://www.instagram.com/BookishKelly2020/

Inked & Blonde (Review)  https://inkedandblonde.blogspot.com/

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Spotlight) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

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*Spoiler free review*

As a fan of time travel, I appreciate the way that Anderson handled it in this read. Instead of jumping back and forth between times the way many time travel stories (that I’ve personally read) do, Ulrik and Tessa find themselves transported to a new place and time. They need to figure out how to survive in the new world they’ve found themselves in, to make peace with the fact that their lives are forever changed.

This is the first book I’ve read by Anderson, and I’m happy to say that I plan on picking up more in the future. Her characters feel real. They have emotions and motivations, flaws ands strengths. They’re lives have weight to them, they’re not just fluff written to further a plot. And I, for one, absolutely enjoyed reading about them.

That being said, I also enjoyed the plot of this story, and the world that Anderson has created. It can’t be easy to find yourself somewhere new and try to survive in the unknown. I applaud Ulrik for being able to survive as well as he did. Sure he was a warrior before being sent to this new place, but he was a warrior that knew how to deal with his world – not the new world. To be able to adapt and handle a new world with new challenges is impressive.

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Blog Tour Organized By: 

R&R Book Tours

Balance by Lyla Oweds

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Pages: 451

Series: The Grimm Cases, Book 5

Genres: New Adult, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Reverse Harem, (Light) Horror

Publication date: January 19, 2021

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Miles is kind, caring, and sensitive. At least, that’s what Bianca thought until he left with nothing but a note and the days passed by. With his absence, mysteries begin unravelling and new alliances are formed. But there’s still a hole in Bianca’s chest that none of the other guys can fill. As much as they tell her not to worry, she can’t help it.

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“I promise you that it’ll be none of your business when she’s eaten by a dragon,” Brayden muttered through clenched teeth, trying unsuccessfully to drag Bryce along with him.

Bryce’s stern expression fell, and he finally stumbled forward one step. “What?”

“What, you heard me.” Brayden shrugged. “Don’t be such a prude.”

Chapter Twelve, Bianca

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In case I haven’t said it already, this story has me hooked. Being the fifth story in the series, the characters and their relationships are already extremely fleshed out. Except, like a fantastic writer would, Oweds continues to have her characters grow and change. Their relationships with each other as well as themselves are dynamic and keep me wanting more. Watching the characters come to terms with their own strengths and weaknesses makes me want to be a better person myself.

Because this story changes between multiple perspectives as the chapters change, as a reader you’re able to understand each character’s motivations and thought process more in depth. While not every author is great at fleshing out each character as their own personality, I personally believe that Oweds excels at this. I can put down the book in the middle of a chapter, leave it for an hour or two, come back and still easily figure out which character’s perspective I’m reading from.

The world itself also continues to grow and change before the reader’s eyes. Bianca’s past continues to be explained – both the hardships she underwent and the sprinkling of joys that she knew growing up. But even still, the reader is left with more questions than answers in regards to what really happened to Bianca before she got adopted by the Geiers. I adore this as the world continues to expand the more we find out about Bianca and her past, not shrinking into the sole focus of the story. By having more questions about what went on than answers, Oweds has promised the reader enjoyment as the story goes on.

If this wasn’t the most recent story in the series, I would have already picked up and read the next one already. As it is, I sit here waiting (not so) patiently for the next book to come out. I’m not kidding when I say I can’t wait to dive back into this amazing world.

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Nosatsu (Charming) Junkie by Ryoko Fukuyama Vol. 1 – 16

Naka is an aspiring model with a problem: her face tenses up into a terrifying sight whenever she’s nervous. Umi is Naka’s biggest rival and the hottest model at their agency. When Naka discovers Umi’s secret, hilarity ensues behind the camera.

Average rating:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Series: Charming Junkie, Vol 1 – 16

Genres: Manga, Romance, Shojo, Young Adult


Volume 1

Length: 192 pages

Publication Date: November 28th, 2006

Nosatsu Junkie was one of the first manga I read in its entirety back when I was in high school. Because of this, I knew that I’d be going into this read with fond memories attached to the story.

Even with that, I genuinely enjoyed rereading this manga. While I’ve never been a model myself – nor do I ever expect to be – I found it interesting to read about young models learning to balance their careers with their schooling.

This is a fun read, though I don’t know how realistic it is. I highly doubt that many people would succeed at or even try to keep the secret that Umi does in the real world. Also, in this day and age, I doubt that it’s something that many people would need to do. The world is more accepting of things now than they were even 10 years ago. Without going into spoilers, I think it’s possible for someone to model the way Umi does in this story without having to keep the same kind of secret.

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Emmitt’s Treasure by Melissa Haag

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Pages: 320

Series: Judgement of the Six Companion Series, Book 2

Genres: Paranormal, Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult, Urban Fantasy, Shapeshifter, Supernatural

Publication date: May 24, 2016

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After six years away from his pack, Emmitt realizes he doesn’t know what he wants from life. His parents want him to lead, the Elders expect him to further integrate his people into human society. Yet these responsibilities weigh on him and make him reluctant to take on the leadership awaiting him.

Finding his mate changes everything. Michelle’s shy and beautiful… and on the run. Helping and protecting her just might be the very thing Emmitt needs to learn that responsibility isn’t always a burden.

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Around midnight, she woke with a gasp. I stayed on the couch, listening. After a moment I heard her get out of bed. She closed every window in her room then went to her brothers’ room and did the same. It wasn’t cool enough outside to warrant closing the windows. That meant she was afraid.

When she stepped out into the hall, she froze.

“Bad dream,” she said quietly.

I sat up and motioned for her to join me. She quietly crossed the room and sat beside me, leaning against my side. I wrapped my arm around her and held her close as she trembled.

“Go to sleep,” I said softly.

She exhaled slowly and laid her head on my shoulder. It was the best feeling on Earth. Not just her physical contact, but her trust. Something had frightened her, but she was willing to sleep if I held her.

The trembling eased, and I kissed the top of her head. Within minutes, she slept. I held her a while before easing us onto the couch. It wasn’t meant for sleeping, let alone sleeping two. The narrow cushions meant some creative cuddling. Not that I minded. I just hoped Michelle wouldn’t either when she woke. With Michelle as my blanket, I closed my eyes.

Emmitt’s Treasure, Chapter 14

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As always I adored reading the story from a second perspective. Getting into Emmitt’s head gives the reader a second take on the events that happen, full of new scenes or takes on the same ones. No two people experience the same event the same way, so getting to see it in different ways helps clarify the situation. Besides, I adore reading about Emmitt’s protective side.

It was hard (and frustrating) for him to try to provide Michelle with a safe place to live when she wouldn’t open up to him. He was doing everything in his power to make her feel safe and like she belonged with him. Yet because she had so many secrets and worries – not that he knew about them for the longest time – his attempts to make her comfortable didn’t hit the way he hoped they would.

I know how frustrating it can be when the communication just isn’t there. It’s hard to get someone to trust you when they’re so scared of everything. Yet Emmitt never gave up. He continued to try his hardest to get Michelle to trust him, and I’m so glad it worked out for him. Not only because of the mate bond that the two have, but because they both clearly make each other better. And that’s truly what a good relationship is – two people making each other better and happier.

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Dreamthief by Tamara Grantham

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Pages: 318

Series: Olive Kennedy, Fairy World M.D., Book 1

Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Fae, Paranormal Romance

Publication date: September 1, 2015

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Visiting Faythander is a nasty business. Forget fairies and good times, people come back with lost memories and mental problems. Just ask Olive Kennedy, the therapist who treats patients suffering from Faythander’s side effects. Despite her empty bank account, she’s never failed to cure a client – until now.

Traveling back the Faythander wasn’t on Olive’s to do list, but she has no choice if she wants to save both Earth and Fairy from the ancient being called the Dreamthief. To complicate matters, she might very well lose her heart to someone who can’t love her in return.

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“You never told me the truth of what happened in Earth Kingdom.”

I swallowed. “I didn’t?” My voice came out as a breathless whisper.

“Whatever happened, it does not matter.”

“Why not?”

He took my hands in his and knelt beside me. “Because I am in love with you.”

I blinked. Did I hear him correctly?

Ch, 40, Olive & Kull

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I found this to be a fun mystery/fae/paranormal read. The world itself intrigues me and while I’d never want to deal with the nasty side effects of travelling from Earth to Faythander, I’d love to be able to experience its beauty and cruelty to myself. That might not sound like the most appealing thing in the world, but what’s beauty if you’ve got nothing to compare it to? Throw in a mind gripping plot, and I look forward to diving back into this world the only way I can.

Olive Kennedy is a therapist that specializes in helping people dealing with the side effects of travelling between Earth and Faythander. Being half-human and half-elf herself, Olive is exceptionally good at it. She’s able to draw people out of their funk and find the thing that’s binding them to the ill feelings. When things happen that prevents her from helping someone she cares about, Olive realizes she’s going to have to work harder than ever to save her loved ones from Faythander and its influence.

As much as I enjoyed this book and the relationships with in it, I do have to admit that this story tells a lot more than it shows the reader. As a reader I enjoy finding and decoding clues within the writing. Unfortunately, Dreamthief doesn’t really give too many clues to the reader to figure things out for themself. There’s a lot of “clues” that are written down in such a way that they were more stated as facts than clues for the reader to put together. For a story that was trying to have a mystery in its plot, the mystery aspect of this story fell flat.

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How to tell if Your Cat is Plotting to Kill You by Matthew Inman (The Oatmeal)

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Pages:

Goodreads: HttiYCiPtKY

Genres: Humor, Graphic Novel, Nonfiction, Comics

Publication date: October 9, 2012

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If your cat is kneading you, it’s not a sign of affection but them checking your internal organs for weakness. If they bring you a dead bird, it’s not a gift. It’s a warning.

This collection of cat comics is cute and delivers exactly what it promises to. Ever wonder if your cat is plotting to kill you? Now you’ll know the signs and what to watch out for!

I truly don’t have much to say about this collection of comics that won’t spoil the individual jokes. If you’re interested in a (mostly) satirical collection of comics about cats and their nefarious was, I’d recommend you check this book out. It’s a cute and quick read and gives the reader exactly what it promises.

Hidden by Lyla Oweds

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Pages: 451

Series: The Grimm Cases, Book 4

Genres: New Adult, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Reverse Harem, (Light) Horror

Publication date: January 24, 2020

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Bianca finally found the place she belonged, only to be ripped away from the only people that every really got her and helped her feel normal. Her greatest fear becomes her reality when she’s once again locked up with people who would call her crazy. Everyone keeps telling her that she’s broken and is there to get help, but this time Bianca isn’t going to roll over and let others decide her truth for her.

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“Bianca cannot be the Xing.”

I moved to stand up, wanting nothing more than to break his neck. “What are you -“

Damen held me back with his hand on my arm. Even now, he didn’t want me to hurt his brother.

“She is,” he said, his voice strained. “We’ve already seen her use her abilities. She has the mark.”

“Hold on!” Hanah moved in between the two of us. “You’re misunderstanding. Finn doesn’t mean she can’t be Mu!”

Chapter Two, Julian

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While I was gifted the first 3 books in this series (in Mu: The Grimm Cases) in exchange for an honest review on it, I jumped at the chance to continue this series as soon as I could. I’m not kidding when I say I couldn’t get enough of this story.

The characters and their situations are truly engaging to me. The decisions they make and the way they think about things is fascinating. While I’ve always had a habit of devouring worlds that I enjoy being in, I can honestly say this is the fastest I’ve flown through a series in a long time. As in, I read the first 5 books – plus the side story Home – in four days total. The only reason I stopped was because I’d caught up to what’s been published.

Bianca and the guys go through a ridiculous amount in this series, but especially in this novel. At almost 500 pages long, that makes sense. But even for a novel this long it’s extremely action packed. A lot of clues are given to the reader, a lot of trickery goes on behind the scenes. If I hadn’t already devoured the next book in the series it would be my next read.

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The Secret Girl by C.M. Stunich

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Pages: 420

Series: Adamson All-Boys Academy, Book 1

Genres: Reverse Harem, Romance, Contemporary, Young Adult, Mystery, Suspense, Dark, Bullying Romance (sub genre)

Publication date: May 24, 2019

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Chuck/Charlie/Charlotte has a secret. One that she’ll do just about anything to keep. Being picked on for being the headmaster’s child is one thing, but being the only girl in a previously all boys school is another thing altogether. Charlotte might be their only female student, but she refuses to be their guinea pig – hence her dressing like a guy, cutting her hair short, forgoing the makeup she’s used to wearing, and dropping the contacts in favour for her glasses. But when there’s a secret at the school that nobody is talking about, Charlotte has bigger things to worry about than being a guinea pig.

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Dear Eve,

You don’t belong here.

Last time was a warning.

Next time, I’m not giving you a head start.

Love, Adam

Chapter Two

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This story is pretty much everything it promises to be. A secret girl at an all boys school, a bullying romance novel, and a reverse harlem teenage story all in one. If that’s what you’re looking for, chances are you’ll enjoy this read. While I found it repetitive at times, as the same information keeps getting thrown at the reader, I’ll admit that I read this entire book in one sitting.

Right when I got to about the 40% mark, I’d planned on putting this story down for the night… but then it started to get good (to me at least). Instead of finishing the chapter I was reading and going to bed, I ended up staying up until about 3 in the morning to finish this story.

I’ll admit that the first 40ish percent of the story was not my cup of tea. I’m not a big fan of the “bullying turned lovers” storyline that happens in some novels. If I’d read the description of this book or looked at any of the spoiler free reviews of it, I probably wouldn’t have picked it up. However, I stuck that first part of the story out and I’m glad that I did. Once the bullying calms down a little bit, it began to transition to one of my favourite tropes/sub genres that can be found in a romance novel – the reverse harem.

If you look at the books that I’ve read over the last year or so, you’ll see that I’ve read a bunch of reverse harem novels. It’s something that I’ve recently discovered I adore in a romance novel. Personally I’m happy with the one person I’m with and I couldn’t imaging wanting anyone else to mix things up. I’m happily a one guy kind of girl. That being said, I really do reading about these kinds of romances/relationships. The Secret Girl showing hints of a reverse harem beginning to form was exactly what I needed to catch my attention and draw me into the story.

While this is certainly not the best story I’ve ever read, I will admit that I picked up the next story basically right away to see where the cliffhanger in this book would go.

Though I do have to ask – why choose to go by Chuck when you can go by Charlie instead? While Charlie is typically more of a guys name, it could also be considered the short form of Charlotte. It’s just a natural progression in my mind, and an easier name to remember to answer to.

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(Mis)fortune by Melissa Haag

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Pages: 358

Series: Judgement of the Six, Book 2

Genres: Paranormal, Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult, Urban Fantasy, Shapeshifter, Supernatural

Publication Date: April 29, 2013

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Michelle, another woman with unexplainable gifts, finds herself surrounded by werewolf society. Kept prisoner for years by the predictions that torture her, she meekly follows orders not knowing if she’ll ever be able to run. When her stepfather dies, Michelle takes the opportunity to run. But she needs to find a safe place – somewhere someone will listen to her predictions and not use them against her. It also needs to be somewhere safe, with someone just like her captor to protect her from him.

Part of the fur wearing faction wants to use her, and another part strives to keep her safe. Will Michelle discover enough to keep those she loves safe from the emerging evil?

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I felt a blush creep into my face as I stared into the room. My stomach dropped. The king sized bed with a white feather down comforter dominated the room. Two towels folded into the shape of swans facing each other to form a heart with their heads and necks sat on the bed. A black, white, and brown abstract painting hang on the wall above the bed. To the left, long black and brown patterned curtains dominated the wall.

This was the room from the vision…

(Mis)fortune, Chapter 15

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Michelle is quite the interesting character to be in the mind of. Her predictions have always been her weakness, but at least she knew what to expect with them. Yet when even that changed for her, it’s easy to see that she didn’t know what to think about what was going on around her. On top of that, knowing that she’s got others to protects makes her a more serious main character than Gabby. Hard to believe if you’ve read Gabby’s tale (the first book in the series), but true nonetheless.

I also really enjoyed the romance within this story. Michelle’s already gone through a crazy amount in her short lifetime, so it’s great to see her come out of her shell and fall in love. She manages to find a fantastic mate – someone who’s willing to protect her from the craziness of her own life, who cherishes her for herself, not what she can do for him.

As much as I adore reading about the Compound that’s the werewolf home base, it’s also great to read about them expanding. For too many years they’d been on the edges of society and slowly dwindling in numbers. Now, finally, they’re starting to increase in number enough to need a second base to call their home. To know that Michelle – one of the compatible females – is part of the motivation to get this second base of operations ready was great to see.

If you’re looking for a cute and mostly lighthearted romance read, and don’t mind a fascinating werewolf spin to it, you might enjoy this story. Each of these novels tell the story of a different couple throughout the overarching storyline tying the tales together. Each story has its own twists and supernatural elements to make the story unique and eye catching. I, for one, love it.

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A Conventicle of Magpies by LMR Clarke (Spoiler Review)

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Pages: 184

Series: The Bloodskills Duology, Book 1

Genres: Gaslamp Fantasy, Adventure, Steampunk

Publication Date: January 6th, 2021

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Rook is a thief, and entirely unapologetic about it as she’s determined to do anything to ensure her mother and siblings survive the squalid and dangerous streets of Stamchester.

Rook slips in and out of the homes of the ruling elite of Stamchester, the Avanish,like a shadow taking what she needs without regret.

Why should she? Had the Avanish not stolen her own people, the Saouiasei, from their own homes years before and transported them across the ocean to Stamchester to work as virtual slaves?

And, now the Avanish had no more use for Rook and her people, where they not determined to dispose of them?

The Avanish had already laid waste to a swathe of Saouiasei homes, a region which had become known as ‘The Scar’, in an attempt to drive them out?

However, Rook was not the only person hiding in the shadows. A far more dangerous figure was haunting the filthy streets of Stamchester striking fear into Avanish and Saouiasei alike; Billy Drainer, a serial killer who not only murdered his victims but drained them of every ounce of their precious, life giving blood.

For within blood was a highly sought after commodity, the ability to enhance a person’s natural abilities through the art of Bloodskill. To be faster and stronger than a normal person was something those with money were willing to pay handsomely for.

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Rook suppressed a grin. Avanish wealth complemented Avanish arrogance in a way that gave Rook a comfortable existence.

A Conventicle of Magpies, Chapter One

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As a whole, this story captured my attention from the get go. Coming off of a pretty serious months long reading slump, this was the perfect story for me to pick up. The characters are gripping, the world is fascinating, the premise is unique, and the problems almost tangible. I dove right into the story and didn’t want to put it down as soon as I’d started. I can’t wait to continue on in this world as soon as more exists. If that’s not a fantastic end to a reading slump, I don’t know what is.

This story is such an interesting concept. I adore learning more about the Bloodskills and the way different people are able to harness the powers. It’s extremely clever to use blood typing the way they did in this story. It helps make the story seem more real, more plausible even though magic doesn’t exist that way in the real world. Adding blood sickness to the lore of this world is a really clever touch, something that gives the story even more depth.

Rook herself is such an enjoyable main character to read about. Being the top of her field, it’s easy to see the skill through which she does things. Yet she’s by no means perfect. She’s got a tempter to her that’s enjoyable to read about. (Okay, enjoyable might not be right right word for it. I don’t think you’re supposed to “enjoy” someone having a temper…) Of course, she’s pretty good at keeping this temper in check when she needs to. But it’s always there, just below the surface.

In general, I adore reading about outlaws, thieves, etc. Being someone who always tries to follow the rules and the laws of society, it’s a great escape for me to slip into a life like this. I wish I had the bravery and conviction that Rook has in everything she does. I wish I had the tenacity to go out and do what needs to be done… even when there’s a serial killer on the loose.

The political unrest that’s in this series is a very loud undertone throughout everyone’s actions and decisions. It’s clear just how deep the hatred lies on both sides. Heck, it’s even clear in the ways that Billy Drainer selects his victims. While political reads aren’t necessarily my favourite, this story covers the politics behind slavery and racism in a way that helps drive the story forward. It doesn’t detract anything from the actions of the characters – instead it enhances them. It’s sickening the fact that parallels can be made between A Conventicle of Magpies and the world around us, but to me that just helped make this story even more powerful.

If you’re looking for a fun, fast paced Steampunk story, you can’t go wrong by picking up A Conventicle of Magpies.

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