Tag Archive: dark-fantasy



Hell's Hinges (A Fistful of Daggers #3)Hell’s Hinges by S.M. Reine
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I read this a bit ago. I was busy and couldn’t write a review yet. And it wasn’t up to post on yet. So now I can write this.

For anyone who lives in Reno, this is such a fun book! Anyone who has been reading S.M. Reine since Six Moon Summer will love this book. So many old friends come back. Well, not exactly come back. We get to go on another timeline or two and get to visit friends and situations we’ve seen before but new things are done to change things a bit. I love this idea. Let’s not stay on a linear way of life if we are fantasy or sci-fi. Let’s explore every incident and person from many angles. By the way, this doesn’t mean it is all fun. It is exciting and often scary as deities and demons are involved. I hated putting it down so I could get some sleep.

BUT by golly, I love seeing Reno from Ms. Reine’s eyes! Even though I haven’t lived there for three years I still can see the bars and the river and Idywild park. It just makes me happy to see this world.

If you get the chance please read all of Sara’s books!

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The Screwtape LettersThe Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Ralph Cosham was the narrator of the edition I was able to obtain from the Overdrive library. I know it can’t be very interesting reading letters. There were no characters to play or give variety to the story. So I can’t say if he was good at what he did or not. I just found it BORING! Like a guy reading letters.

I read this a million years ago as a teen/young adult. I can sincerely say that it was the C.S. Lewis books that gave me my healthy agonistic views. They still stand, so those of you that praise the man really haven’t read his fiction. These were on my mother’s approved list along with Pilgrim’s Progress. The sci-fi was excellent. And are there, like all sci-fi, to make a person think. This book was clever in its format of letters to tell the advice, though from a negative viewpoint. This may be the Cobert Report of its time. I understand sarcasm but I find it the least effective way to prove a point. I think I liked it more as a young person. Now I just couldn’t get into it or find anything redeeming. Now I was just bored, clever negative letters aside. And it was overwhelmingly male.

It is, on the other hand, a bit of a depiction of World War II and the men who fought it in, like my dad. Much reflected tales he told of his own journeys in war. How easy it is to forget the lessons we learned as children when faced with constant death and killing.

It’s worth the read. Just not a second time.

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Death Scream: A Descent Short (Descent, #0.7)Death Scream: A Descent Short by S.M. Reine

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well, that was a quick read. I guess this is the only way I like short stories. I already know the main characters and how this world works. Instead, this was a fun extra ride. Elise and James in Ireland.

Still, I think it was too short as I wanted to see what happens next.

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Curve of Her ClawCurve of Her Claw by Margaret McGaffey Fisk

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I wish I could give this story more stars. Especially since, so far, I have loved all of my friend, Margaret McGaffey Fisk’s other stories. This is the first story that I had to read in two sittings. I couldn’t continue reading it as a bedtime book, too gruesome!

At the end of the story is the reason it is so dark. This was a part of a dark fantasy anthology. It needed that darkness. It succeeded! I typed that with a shiver up my spine.

As usual, the writing was spectacular! I just didn’t care for the main character, no matter how hard I tried. I wanted the story to take a different path, but it didn’t. I hope I never meet an elf like this one!

For my braver friends, this may be right up your alley! Try it!

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Hotter Than Helltown (Preternatural Affairs, #3)Hotter Than Helltown by S.M. Reine

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Disclosure: I was given this ARC edition, by the author, for an honest review.

For something as gruesome and dark as the name implies, Hotter Than Helltown was a fast, exciting read. And funny! I can’t tell you how often I laughed out loud! And there were places of philosophy to make a person stop and think. I like that in a book. I even had to highlight a phrase or two I thought noteworthy. But I don’t want to ruin anyone else’s read by pointing the gems out. Half the fun in is discovery for yourself.

I have grown to like the self-depreciating detective turned witch, Cesar, for his humanity. Though we see him as quite the hunk, he knows he’s not the catch women might think they want. Despite himself he is the reluctant hero of this particular series, Preternatural Affairs. Though you don’t have to read all the books of the series before it, I like that I have the knowledge of S. M. Reine’s worlds.

For an ARC I see less error than I do in many publications out there today. That just proves what a professional author is capable of. Well done, Sara! I can’t wait to read the next one, already cued up!

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Ethereal Fury
Ethereal Fury by Jessica O’Gorek
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Disclaimer: I was given this Kindle ebook by the author for an honest review.

This book took me longer than it should have to read. It started out with strong pro-Earth promise. I was willing to see what was going to happen to this soul that hurt the planet so deeply. I love the fact that Earth spoke and had her own entity.

Ms. O’Gorek’s writing and characters were awesome! Even the demons seem to have depth. That would have rated five stars. BUT I am not Catholic, nor do I hold to their priests being holy. I think that on a whole religion and particularly the Catholic church has caused more damage than a million demons could. And to watch these main characters put up with the restraint imposed upon them by the church was more than painful. And what does all this have to to with the oil in the other side of the planet? The book never addressed that again. In my mind that lowered the rating to three stars. So I averaged it out in my system to a 3.5 and rounded up.

Oh, and my worst possible complaint: cliffhanger! If it left me with more of a feeling about where the series is going. If it left me with a few tied up loose ends. Either of those would have helped me want to read the next book. A suggestion that might help is the first chapter of the next book or s blurb that entices the reader to look further into this story.

A note: Since I read using my tablet or fire on occasion, I found the font brightness changing from dim to bright and back again. It wasn’t my settings. I was forced to use my 2nd generation Kindle and used text-to-speech to get through. I don’t know if this font this is an issue that can be addressed easily, but for some of us with weaker eyes, that is nearly a deal breaker. Luckily I do use tts a lot so I could still flow with the story.

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