Genre: Fantasy

School of Deaths by Christopher Mannino

Posted August 31, 2016 by karenbaron in Boarding School, Death, Dragons, Elementals, Fantasy, Fiction, Paranormal, Paranormal People, Review, Series, Teen, Young Adult / 0 Comments

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

School of Deaths by Christopher ManninoSchool of Deaths by Christopher Mannino
Series: The Scythe Wielder's Secret #1
Series Rating: five-stars
Published by Muse it Up Publishing on May 2nd 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Paranormal, Young Adult
Pages: 270
Format: Kindle
five-stars

Can a timid girl from Maryland become the first female Death?
Thirteen-year-old Suzie Sarnio always believed the Grim Reaper was a fairy tale image of a skeleton with a scythe. Now, forced to enter the College of Deaths, she finds herself training to bring souls from the Living World to the Hereafter. The task is demanding enough, but as the only female in the all-male College, she quickly becomes a target. Attacked by both classmates and strangers, Suzie is alone in a world where even her teachers want her to fail.
Caught in the middle of a plot to overthrow the World of Deaths, Suzie must uncover the reason she’s been brought there: the first female Death in a million years.
PRE-ORDER NOW at https://museituppublishing.com/bookst...

My take on this book:              Wow. School of Deaths by Christopher Mannino was awesome and it kept me thinking about Suzie and her friends whenever I put it down to do something else. We follow Susan, Suzie as she likes to be called by her friends, on a sort of regular day for her in our world before she is whisked away by a Death to become a Death herself or to go back to the normal world thanks to an end of year test for the first years.

Suzie is able to make it through most of the first year with some hiccups as she is the only female in an all-male environment and not everyone is happy to see her there. Suzie is able to stand up for herself against some of the other students and even some of the teachers there that aren’t happy to see her there in the World of Deaths.

There is also a bunch of twists and turns that we unravel with Suzie as the book progresses that makes you want to read further and further into it. I was making guesses here and there about what I think is up with Suzie and most of my guesses were right.

Schools of Deaths by Christopher Mannino is different than with what I normally read as Young Adult book but I have to say that it was a good different and it truly kept my interest. I immediately thought that it was like Harry Potter but completely different as Harry was eleven when he was thrust into magic and Suzie is thirteen.

Suzie is a wonderful character with a lot of character development about with what she thought of the World of Deaths. Along  with everything else, that happens to her. She also learns more about the mystery regarding her being picked to go the School of Deaths. She also is able to help some other people out.

Schools of Deaths by Christopher Mannino is a great book. It has a great world developed for it and I love the different species that he added to this world. It’s also one that will keep you wondering about it while you are doing all those boring normal everyday life things. All of that and other things I have mentioned above makes this book for me five star rating. I will totally recommend this book to other people to read as it is a great book for both young adults and adults.

Anyways until the next time enjoy this book review brought to you by

Baroness’ Book Trove.

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About Christopher Mannino

Christopher Mannino’s life is best described as an unending creative outlet. He teaches high school theatre in Greenbelt, Maryland. In addition to his daily drama classes, he runs several after-school performance and production drama groups. He spends his summers writing and singing. Mannino holds a Master of Arts in Theatre Education from Catholic University, and has studied mythology and literature both in America and at Oxford University. His work with youg people helped inspire him to write young adult fantasy, although it was his love of reading that truly brought his writing to life.
Christopher’s debut novel School of Deaths (The Scythe Wielder’s Secret book 1) was published in May 2014 by MuseItUp Publishing. The second book in the trilogy, Sword of Deaths (The Scythe Wielder’s Secret book 2), was published in August 2015. The third book Daughter of Deaths is expected to be released in 2016. His series has received rave reviews and been compared to Harry Potter and The Hunger Games.


October 32 by Larry Rodness

Posted July 13, 2016 by karenbaron in Adult Fiction, Fantasy, Fiction, Ghosts, Mystery, Paranormal People, Review, Rural, Witches / 0 Comments

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

October 32 by Larry RodnessOctober 32 by Larry Rodness
Published by Deer Hawk Publications on October 31st 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery
Pages: 230
Format: Kindle
five-stars

It's October 31, and insurance agent Alexander Malefant is sent to picturesque Elora during its annual Halloween festival. No sooner does Alexander arrive than he witnesses the near-drowning of a boy bobbing for apples. Shortly after that, a group of children are attacked by crows. Later that evening, all the children in the village suddenly disappear. Soon, every person becomes a suspect as residents frantically try to discover what happened to the children. Who or what is behind these disappearances, and can they get the children back before it's too late?

My take on this book:              Wow! October 32 by Larry Rodness was completely different than what I thought it would be. The whole book is written in the point of view of Alexander Malefant as he first enters the outskirts of this town to the very end of the book. Alex is only there to try to get the people there to buy insurance from his insurance agency but everything has gone wrong for him since he arrives there an hour early to the end.

Alex is seeing a little girl around the town that he has no clue who it is and no one really believes him about seeing her since all of the other towns kids are missing. To make it worse it’s really hot and foggy that everyone doesn’t know with why it’s like that. It seems like the towns past and Alex’s past are the ones that are coming forward to get justice.

Alex has heard about this fire that has happened fifty years ago in the town that had killed thirty-two kids and no one really knows the true story about what really happened that night except that it revolves around a trophy. A trophy which they have had for the past fifty years and one that has made it so that the town, Elora, can win.

The ending of this book is something that I completely didn’t think would happen. This book has kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the whole thing as I didn’t even know who killed those kids fifty years ago, or who took the kids, or even more with why all this happened when Alex got into town.

October 32 by Larry Rodness is a great book and one that I am giving five stars too. If anyone asks for a mystery recommendation, I would recommend this book. I will tell them that it is a great book to read especially as it is totally different from with what I imagined it to be from the synopsis.

Anyways until the next time enjoy this book review brought to you by

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About Larry Rodness

Larry Rodness began his entertainment career as a professional singer at the age of 19 and has been performing in Toronto for over 35 years with his wife and singing partner, Jodi, at venues such as The Old Mill, Royal York Hotel, Skyline and Bristol Place Hotel as well as countless corporate and private functions.

In the 80’s Larry studied musical theatre writing with PRO under Broadway conductor Layman Engel, which led him to write for dinner theater. He then moved into the screenplay arena where he has written over a dozen screenplays and has had 3 scripts optioned to date. In the past 2 years he has also become a published novelist.


Catastrophe

Posted July 12, 2016 by karenbaron in Angels, Demons, Dragon Shifters, Elves, Fairies, Fantasy, Jinn, Magic, Paranormal, Paranormal Mystery, Paranormal People, Review, Sekhmet, Series, Supernatural, Vampires, Witches / 0 Comments

CatastropheCatastrophe by Liz Schulte
Series: Sekhmet #1
Series Rating: five-stars
Published by Smashwords Edition on December 15th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal
Format: Kindle
five-stars

I have learned a few things in my life. If you can’t wear clean underwear, don’t wear any at all. Never trust a vampire. Secret ruling councils should generally be avoided. Finally, and this is the most important, very few people are ever what they seem.However, it wasn’t always easy to live by these rules. Like, when said secret ruling council demanded my appearance and then did the worst thing they could possible do and inflamed my curiosity. Asking me to go to New Orleans to investigate a series of werewolf attacks, I couldn’t possibly say no to that.The first problem was werewolves had been eliminated from the Abyss so it was impossible that they were killing anyone. The second fiasco was that more vampires were in this city than ever before, including the one who was intent on ruining my life. And the third complication was I couldn’t tell anyone else about my mission or I would forfeit my freedom to the council.Some missions are easy. Others are a Catastrophe.

My Thoughts:         Curiosity may not kill the cat but…

First I must say that even though this is the first part of the Sekhmet Series, it is a spin off from the world of Liz Schulte. I like that Ms. Schulte doesn’t rehash the previous books and disrupt the story of this one. I have read her other books and thoroughly enjoy the world that she has created.

Femi is a wonderful character, she has depth, backbone, insecurities and attitude issues. She likes to know the “why” of each bounty not just how it is done. Femi does have a serious commitment issues. I am not sure if it is just a Sekhmet thing or just that she is afraid to lose someone she cares deeply for or she just hasn’t found that special person. Everyone has their own inner demons and reasons for being who they are. Femi is a warrior with tons of emotion and she cares way more than a Sekhmet should. Sekhmet are neutral in nature, but Femi has a hard time not helping the underdog/little guy.

Femi is extremely curious about the Abyss council. When they assign her a bounty in New Orleans, (ok they actually gloated her into taking the job). You know the ole’ greater good angle, either way Femi won’t back down and she can’t have unanswered questions if at all possible. Whenever the greater good plays in there is always a catastrophe on the horizon.

As for the Liz Schulte’s world of the Abyss, I love it. You have the humans who don’t see the other creatures walking among them, and you have the Abyss creatures. The Abyss creatures are wonderful and as with humans some are good, some are bad, and some are a little of both.

I think I truly like the mysteries that Ms. Schulte uses in each story, she keeps me guessing and manages to toss in that little bit to make me question if the one I picked is the bad guy (or should I say main bad guy). You really never know how many angles are being played until the story plays out. However, I like the way she wraps it up, with a kind of happy ending.

She also has that little bit of romance that keeps you coming back. As for Femi and Sy, I like the flirting and the way they protect each other, but I hope that there is a person that is truly for Femi. Someone who will compliment her and become the partner that she truly needs. If Sy is this person than that is great if not, I can’t wait to see who or what Ms. Schulte can imagine.

So, if you haven’t already read Liz Schulte’s Easy Bake Coven series, The Guardian Trilogy, or The Jinn Trilogy, you might want to look into these. She also has a few short stories that go with her world of the Abyss. My rating is 5 stars.

This is a Guest Review for Baroness’ Book Trove. Thank you for the opportunity to review this book for your site. ~Jen

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The Shifter Romances the Writer

Posted June 18, 2016 by karenbaron in Fairies, Gargoyles, Ghosts, Nymphs, Paranormal, Paranormal People, Review, Rooks, Series, Shape Shifters, Supernatural, Valkyrie, Vampires, Werewolves, Witches / 0 Comments

The Shifter Romances the WriterThe Shifter Romances The Writer by Kristen Painter
Series: Nocturne Falls #6
Series Rating: five-stars
on May 24th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Pages: 364
Format: Kindle
five-stars

Welcome to Nocturne Falls, the town that celebrates Halloween 365 days a year.
The tourists think it's all a show: the vampires, the werewolves, the witches, the occasional gargoyle flying through the sky. But the supernaturals populating the town know better.
Living in Nocturne Falls means being yourself. Fangs, fur, and all.
For romance writer Roxy St. James, living in Nocturne Falls also means a fresh start. And as soon as her unbearable ex signs the divorce papers, that new beginning will be a reality. Unfortunately, her ex doesn’t seem ready to let her go and the subtle threats he’s been making leave her no choice but to confide in her oh-so-handsome neighbor, who just happens to be a deputy with the sheriff’s department.
But Officer Alex Cruz isn’t just the law. He’s also a panther shifter, a secret he’s sworn to keep (along with the truth about Nocturne Falls) from the very foxy Roxy. Humans aren’t supposed to know the town is filled with supernaturals. Then she starts seeing things she shouldn’t and thinks she’s losing her mind. His attraction—and concern—for her wars with the promise he’s made.
Will his truth be more than she can handle? Or will it cause her to write him out of her life?

My Thoughts: Holy Black Panthers!

We heard of Roxy St. James as she went to school with Delaney Ellingham. Roxy is a romance writer of the paranormal nature. She is hoping for a fresh start in Nocturne Falls, leaving behind all of the bad (her ex), only bringing the good with her (her corvette, writing and the essentials). She buys a beautiful home next door to one of the sheriff deputies, Alex Cruz. We have also met Alex quite a few times in the past books.

The two of them don’t start out on the best of terms but their attraction quickly turns that around. Alex is always the gentleman and Roxy is sweet, funny and learning to like herself again.

We get to see what the other residents of Nocturne Falls are up to. Delaney’s pregnancy is going forward.  Ivy Merrow is pregnant now, Shanna has hooked up with Alex’s brother Diego, and they moved in together. We also heard from the Valkyrie sisters, got to check in with Pandora. We also met a few other residents, like Agnes the book shop owner.

Kristin Painter really spins a wonderful story. Honestly, if Nocturne Falls were a real place I would move to Georgia to live there. If you haven’t already read this series check it out, it’s fabulous. I can’t praise it enough. My rating is 5 stars.

This is a Guest Review for Baroness’ Book Trove. Thank you for the opportunity to review this book for your site. ~Jen

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About Kristen Painter

About the Author:

Kristen Painter likes to balance her obsessions with shoes and cats by making the lives of her characters miserable and surprising her readers with interesting twists. She currently writes award-winning paranormal romance and urban fantasy. The former college English teacher can often be found on the social media links below where she loves to interact with readers.


Gone With the Witch by Heather Blake

Posted June 15, 2016 by karenbaron in Adult Fiction, Chick Lit, Cozy, Fantasy, Fiction, Magic, Mystery, Paranormal, Paranormal People, Paranormal Romance, Review, Romance, Rural, Series, Witches, Womens Fiction / 0 Comments

Gone With the Witch by Heather BlakeGone With the Witch by Heather Blake
Series: A Wishcraft Mystery #6
Series Rating: five-stars
Published by NAL on May 3rd 2016
Genres: Cozy, Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery, Paranormal
Pages: 336
Format: Kindle
five-stars

The national bestselling author of Some Like It Witchy returns as wish-granting witch Darcy Merriweather is put to the test after murder takes first prize at a pet show. . . .  Darcy and her dog Missy are determined to put their best foot forward at the Enchanted Village’s annual Pawsitively Enchanted pet contest. She’s happy to lend a hand when the show’s organizer hires Darcy to keep an eye on things among growing suspicions that someone is sabotaging the event. But Darcy’s quest for justice is thrown off the scent when her lead suspect is found dead at the competition.   As if a murder weren’t bad enough, someone begins snatching up prize-winning pets right from under their owners’ noses. Darcy is determined to protect the pampered participants at whatever cost. But she’ll have to work fast to sniff out the thief before she becomes the next victim of a killer determined to stop her dead in her tracks...

My take on this book:              Gone With the Witch by Heather Blake was such an awesome book. It had me thinking of who the Elder could be, who murdered Natasha, who was stealing the animals from the contest, and a bunch of other questions.

This book starts off with Darcy taking the job for “As You Wish,” her business now and right off the bat Darcy has a bad feeling about this assignment. From the beginning of this book Darcy has been on a whirlwind of emotions about the case and about everything else around her.

I don’t really want to reveal too much about what happens in this book but it’s really good. I am happy to say that in this book we finally find out who the Elder is. I’m not going to say as the author doesn’t want anything like that to be spoiled for anyone that has yet to read the book. Happy guessing, unless you find the clues like a member of the Mystery, Inc. team.

I love the enchanted village that this series is set in. The town square where most things happen is so picturesque, the small town heart if you know what I mean. The shops and the characters that live there are so great.

I am happy to say that my rating for this book is five stars as it was that glamorous. Ms. Blake also has set up what might happen in the next book, The Witch and the Dead, which will be released in October of this year.  If you can’t wait for the next Wishcraft Mystery, check out Ms. Blake’s other series the Magic Potions Mysteries.

Anyways until the next time enjoy this book review brought to you by

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About Heather Blake

Heather Blake (aka Heather Webber) is the author of more than twenty novels and has been twice nominated for an Agatha Award. She’s a total homebody who loves to be close to her family, read, watch reality TV (especially cooking competition shows), drink too much coffee, crochet, bake (mostly cookies), and occasionally leave the house to travel to the beautiful mountains in the northeast. Heather grew up in a suburb of Boston, but currently she lives in the Cincinnati area with her family and is hard at work on her next book.