Tag Archives: fantasy books

Clearwater Dawn by Scott Fitzgerald Gray

Review: “For lovers of fantasy, there is a lot to like about Clearwater Dawn, especially if you like a firmly “front and center” main character whose perspective the story is solely written from. It is a complex tale of both intrigue and “coming of age” for a hero with a past that heavily influences, often frustratingly so, his choices in the present. It took me a couple of tries to pick up and finish this work, however, for the style of telling rather than showing through actions or behaviors, made for a lot of background information to read through. For me, it also inhibited flow and pacing.

Though it was understandable in the case of Chriani, the main character, considering his age and that background, some of the choices he made left me rather exasperated so I was unable to feel much empathy or connection to him. That being said, there is lots of action and scenes that are quite descriptive, and I found myself liking some of the secondary/supporting characters better than him, perhaps because I was presented less about them, which is unusual for me. Although, I couldn’t classify “Clearwater Dawn” as a favorite of mine, I thought it had great potential, an intriguing description, and several good points those who enjoy fantasy might appreciate.”

Description: An apprentice guard in the royal household of Brandishear, Chriani is a capable young warrior held back from attaining his full potential by a lifetime of dark anger. Lauresa is a princess about to be set aside as heir and married off for the sake of treaty — and the only woman Chriani has ever loved. When his mentor is murdered preventing an assassination attempt within the palace, Chriani is forced to become Lauresa’s protector — the two reconciling a forbidden passion even as they find themselves caught up in a maelstrom of political intrigue, ancient racial hatred, a society living in mortal fear of sorcery, and a decades-old plot to plunge five nations into genocidal war.

  • ebook, 332 pages
  • Published May 9th 2011
  • Publisher: Insane Angel Studios
  • ISBN13: 9780986828805
  • Source: Author

Author Bio

Scott Fitzgerald Gray is a specially constructed biogenetic simulacrum built around an array of experimental consciousness-sharing techniques — a product of the finest minds of Canadian science until the grant money ran out. Accidentally set loose during an unauthorized midnight rave at the lab, the S.F. Gray entity is currently at large amongst an unsuspecting populace, where his work as an author, screenwriter, editor, RPG designer, and story editor for feature film keeps him off the streets.

More info on Scott and his work (some of it even occasionally truthful) can be found by reading between the lines at insaneangel.com.

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Demon Trackers (The Anointed, Book One) by C.C. James

Review: Well, having worked in a similar though (mostly) non-paranormal profession that involved hunting down bad guys, with a book like this I tend to look toward action scenes to see if they fit what really can happen in the field. Descriptions were good and are easily visualized for those who may never have been in such situations before, but when you have been, however, details such as presented in “Demon Trackers” slow down what passes in milliseconds. You just don’t get all of that, but then how many of the readers of this genre might have been out at three in the morning tracking an escaped felon?

At times, the dialogue seemed abrupt and awkward to me and since that did comprise a lot of the story, I felt the flow of the tale was interrupted. I would have appreciated more of a balance between it and narrative where background or crucial information might have been explained or shown instead of being told. Considering the main characters age, they are well represented, though I questioned why they were so young but maybe there is a reason that will be answered later in the series. Overall, The Anointed and its Demon Trackers are an interesting premise that leaves plenty of room for expansion.

Description: “Being half human isn’t so bad for demon tracker brothers Jake and Cal, especially when their job is keeping unknowing humans safe from every monster and evil thing that crawls out of Hell. So what if the full-blooded Anointed don’t think they’re up for the task? Jake and Cal have lives to save and beasties to kill and lack of sleep, lack of weapons, and lack of trust from the haughty Anointed demon slayers won’t keep them from it. ”

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Publisher: Red Rover Books; First Edition edition (June 22, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0057PHJQ6
  • Source: Author

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Tower of Parlen Min by Matt Xell

Review: “Tower of Parlen Min” was full of potential, but sentence and paragraph structure were problematic for me. There is so much information and descriptions presented, I felt major streamlining of the characters, plot and ideas, or possible rearrangement would have made for easier understanding and reading. The main character Ves Asirin just didn’t engage my interest enough for me to want to really know who he was so I could empathize with him and root him on in his endeavors. We are given some of his backstory, but it’s not enough to justify or explain his response to some of the other characters, which over time made it hard for me to like him.

Tons of terrific and creative ideas were included, a very ambitious aim, yet especially since it looks to be a series, a cameo of some of them might have been included in this volume, then expanded upon in subsequent books. The author’s enthusiasm is unfailing however, as well as their eagerness to do their very best writing in the fantasy realm. I believe that will improve, and one of the best ways to do so is by reading good fantasy epics by authors having proved their characterization and plotting skills. As a plus addition, I thought the cover art was quite outstanding, and it immediately drew the eye and approval of my fourteen year old son.


Description: Ves Asirin wins a trip to the Tower of Parlen Min. There, with 19 other children, he competes in the Sword Challenge; a series of puzzles and tasks, for $12 million. As fantastic and glorious as the tower seems to be, Ves finds that it keeps a dark and secret history that he has been connected to for over 150 years, a secret that will define his destiny … if he can escape ‘The shadow’.

Published: July 23, 2010 by Matt Xell

ISBN: 001109608X (ISBN13: 2940011096082)
Source: Author
Genre: Youth adult, fantasy

The Tower of Parlen Min Virtual Book Tour 4450718 date: July 24, 2011 12:00AM
location: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Tower-of-Parlen-Min/128829820527242?sk=wall , Zambia
Description: This summer,I, Matt Xell, and the XLA invite you all to the 1st anniversary celebration of the The Narrow Escapes of Ves Asirin and the first installment in the series, Tower of Parlen Min with a massive Virtual Book Tour.

From the 24th of July to the 31st of October, follow the links provided on the Tower of Parlen Min Facebook page to:

+ Read the reviews of Tower of Parlen Min
+ Read the interviews and guestposts of Matt Xell
+ Watch the chapter commentaries
+ Take part in the live chat Q&A


Filed under Child/YA Fiction, Fantasy, Reviews

Globe Hurler by Robinson Mason

Review: The story of “Globe Hurler” is engaging, and the settings and landscapes are very imaginative and realized as the author presented a strong vision of their world creation, Hadanum. It’s fairly fast moving, action packed and detailed as we follow Balon, a young watchware searching for his exiled father sensing that the self-serving and overbearing judgements of the hierarchs wrongly sent him and others away to their likely deaths.

The hierarchs supposedly guard the tribe of Jana people by regulating all aspects of their lives including marriage and procreation, but they have a secret they are struggling to contain, which if revealed, will tear the fabric of their society apart and end their rule. Balon and his friends are the very ones trying to find out what mystery their leaders are hiding so the people can be free to love, live and survive as they can.

I did have some issues with the characterization, as I always like to find someone I can really believe in and root for. Sometimes I felt that for Balon, but other times his errors and outbursts, like his friends, were so exasperating, I felt they deserved the punishment they received. The characters felt more like some modern day young adults in their aims and occasionally petulant behaviors than survivors who’d grown up on a harsh planet and should have instinctively developed certain skills of survival, both social and environment.

Overall, I thought Globe Hurler was a good sci-fi/fantasy read, as it combines elements of both, though I thought the prologue and epilogue could simply have been included in the main narrative for they were part of the story anyway. It ended in such a way, by giving the reason for the title later in the book and introducing a certain character, suggesting it might have a sequel, which I would be quite interested to read, if so. Quite ambitious in a good way, Globe Hurler is a worthy read.

Description: On the savage planet of Hadanum, the last reengineered remnants of humanity struggle for survival. Thallsen, home to the Jana, is surrounded by massive megas, organisms that cover the land and sea, hosts to smaller, but no less terrible creatures.

The Jana have relied on ancient machines from Dead Earth to protect themselves for generations, but their dependence is about to be tested. In search of his father, Watchware Balon has instead found something that will send the Jana hurtling into a conflict for which they are not prepared. On a journey that takes him far from the security of home, he will discover that his people can and must find the strength within themselves to throw off the shackles of their past, or be wiped out forever.

Published: April 3, 2011

ISBN13: 2940011273872

Source: Author

Available at Smashwords, Amazon Kindle, Sony EReader StoreDiesel,

and in print at Blurb.com.


Filed under Fantasy, Reviews, Science Fiction

The Dinosaur Games by Christopher Gordon

Review: Book One in the Tyrannosaur Series. The Dinosaur Games has an interesting and rather unique story concept and plot which reminded me of animation series from the 1980’s. There were plenty of Saturday morning cartoons with story lines featuring good vs. evil in fantasy worlds or fictional settings. In this case, it’s young people forced to battle dinosaurs directed by diabolical people with a secret, nefarious plan to perhaps rule the world, or at least their part of it. Think “Dungeons & Dragons” with dinosaurs set in an alternative or futuristic Texas.

There’s lots of action and a fast moving pace, with terms and phrasing that young adults would identify with, and the author obviously has a strong idea and direction in which they wish to take this series. For me, the drawback was structuring and style, as the narrative is almost entirely in present tense, a screenplay-like mode. We’re always being told or described scenes and events with little or no transition, and this came off as rather disjointed. If you read the description, it reflects “The Dinosaur Games” style (available below). As I had an ARC copy, perhaps paragraph structure and formatting is different in the official released edition. Overall a unique premise, but I would be curious if the same style continues in Book 2 “The Revenge of the Gladiator,” which has recently been released. Dependent upon that, I would consider continuing an adventure among dinosaurs.


One week ago they took Jack’s neighbours.
Six days ago his parents.
Five days ago his brother.
Four days ago the girl he loves.
Three days ago he surrendered to them.
Two days ago Jack rode his first T-Rex.
Yesterday they made him a Gladiator.

Today he’ll save the girl he loves even if it means his own death.

Tomorrow they’ll wish they never let Jack Reaper enter the Dinosaur Games.

Publication Date: February 5th 2011

Publisher: Christopher Gordon

Buy Link: Smashwords

Source: Author

Author Bio:

Author of sci-fi/Fantasy thrillers for YA and adults with an emphasis on high adrenalin action and nerve jangling tension.

Books that both kids and adults can enjoy.

Website: http://www.Read-Chris.Blogspot.com

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Filed under Child/YA Fiction, Fantasy, Reviews