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Review: “A Plague of Shadows” by Travis Simmons

“A Plague of Shadows” (Harbingers of Light, Book One) by Travis Simmons

Available from: Amazon
Released on: 14 December 2014
I received this book free in exchange for an honest review, as part of this book’s blog tour.

Description: A shadow plague is creeping through the land of O. The plague ensnares those it infects, and turns them into mindless shadow people called darklings. The darklings have one goal: to pollute all of the nine worlds along the world tree, and bring about oblivion. Fear of these darklings and the magic they possess drives people to kill those that appear different, or go against the holy word of the All Father.

At nineteen Abagail Bauer should be starting a family of her own, but instead she still home, caring for her lame father and their farm. The hard life has made her practical. She has little time for flights of fancy, unlike her sister Leona who insists her doll can predict the future. But that all changes in a single moment. While tending their bees Abagail encounters a blackness spreading through the hive. She knows what it is: the shadow plague. And now she’s been infected.

She doesn’t believe in other worlds outside her homeland of O. But when her father finds she’s contracted the shadow plague, he sends her to live with her Aunt Mattelyn in a world known as Agaranth. Though she’s never met her aunt, she’s the only known person who has contracted the shadow plague and learned to control it. For Abagail, everything she’s ever believed to be myth becomes a staggering reality.

Joined by her neighbor, Rorick Keuper, on a quest of revenge against the darklings who destroyed his home, and her seer sister, Leona, Abagail sets off across the rainbow bridge to Agaranth in hopes of curing herself of the plague. But Abagail finds that her infection is only the beginning of her ill fate. When she arrives in the new world, she’s far from where she needs to be. Braving the winter of this new land, along with the darklings that hunt her, will Abagail be able to find her aunt before the shadow consumes her, or is she destined to become a husk of who she once was and destroy all she holds dear?

Buy A PLAGUE OF SHADOWS today and get lost in the darkness.

Review: I’m still not entirely sure what I think about this book. There wasn’t anything “wrong” with it and I can’t say that I thought it was bad. It may have been my mood while I was reading, because that’s been known to happen, but I couldn’t seem to fully connect with any of the characters and something undefinable just didn’t sit entirely right.

It was a short read, but I didn’t feel like I got to know the characters that well and Abagail did bother me a little, but that may have been her age. (My issues with young female main characters being well documented.) It moved slowly, but the writing was fine. I liked the Norse inspiration as well, which mostly carried me through.

So I liked it well enough for 3 Fireballs.

3 Fireballs

 

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Review: “The High King’s Embalmer” by S. Copperstone

“The High King’s Embalmer” by S. Copperstone

Available from: Amazon
Released on: 4 July 2014
I received this book free in exchange for an honest review.

Description: The royal family’s shape-shifting embalmer is intent on finding those behind the assassination attempts of the family. To further complicate things, he is kidnapped by bounty hunters, escapes, but finds himself hunted by the king’s own men. Can he find the source behind the deaths before the heirs of the family are extinguished?

Review: Did this book have an actual plot? I’m not really sure, and yet strangely, I didn’t mind so much. It would normally bother the hell out of me, but it didn’t in this book.

That being said, it did feel like it needed a bit more beta reading or content editing; someone to catch the repetition (use the term “unusual narcolepsy” again in the same chapter and I’m gonna…) and help smooth timeline transitions. I found myself getting lost in the timeline at several points, which did pull me out of my reading experience.

However, despite this, I liked the book. The world was fascinating, especially as I was obsessed with Egyptian mythology in middle school, although in a story this long, I would have liked to see more put into the actual world-building that we did see and more of the situation explained for the reader. I liked our narrator, too. I really got into him as I read along.

So, it had its share of things I would have liked to see differently, but on the whole, it was an enjoyable book and I think I’ll be looking on to the next one. 4 Fireballs.

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Travis Simmons is Visiting! [Tour Stop]

A Plague of Shadows

“A Plague of Shadows” (A Harbingers of Light Novel) by Travis Simmons

To Be Published on… 20 January 2015
Published as… Mythological Dark Fantasy

About the Book

Enter the world of O, where a plague of shadows creeps through the land, ensnaring those it infects and turning them into soulless shadow people damned to pollute all of the nine worlds along the world tree. Fear of these darklings, and the magic they possess drives people to kill those that appear different or go against the light.

At nineteen Abagail Bauer should be setting off on her own, not still caring for her father and her family home as she’s doing. The hard life has made her practical, and she has little time for flights of fancy, unlike her sister, Leona, who insists her doll can predict the future. That all changes one day. While tending their bees she encounters a blackness spreading through the hive. Abagail knows what it is: the shadow plague, the sickness that will creep into ones soul and make them nothing more than a shadow, a darkling bent on the destruction of all things good. And now she’s caught it. She doesn’t believe in other worlds outside of the land of O, but when her father finds out she’s infected he decides to send her to the one person who can help her learn to control this weird power: her Aunt Mattelyn in a distant world called Agaranth, and for Abagail everything she’s believed to be myth becomes a staggering reality.

Joined by her neighbor, Rorick Keuper, on a quest of revenge against the darklings who destroyed his home, and her seer sister, Leona, Abagail sets off across the rainbow bridge to another world in hopes of curing herself of the plague. But Abagail finds that her infection is only the beginning of her ill fate. When she arrives in the new world, she’s far from where she needs to be. Braving the winter of this new land, along with the darklings that hunt her, will Abagail be able to find her aunt before the shadow consumes her, or is she destined to become a husk of who she once was and kill those she loves?

Pre-order the Book at Amazon

About the Author

Travis Simmons was kicked out of magic school for his refusal to study and his penchant for mundane activities like cooking. While selling his sword he stumbled upon dogs that he wrongly thought were magical and imagined he could commune with them. After a vicious zombie attack in which witches helped him push back the undead horde, Travis found himself apprenticed to a necromancer.

Afraid that winter was coming, Travis tucked into his magical studies, but always chased his dreams of writing tales science fiction tales and fantasy stories where he could explore his wild imagination about life on other planets. Adamant that Travis learn the esoteric ways of the occult his master made his life a horror of practice and studies. But no matter how he tried, he could never conquer Travis’ questing mind.

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Cover Reveal! “Hero, Cursed” by Diantha Jones

Before he knew the Oracle…

Before he knew the Quad…
Before the Great Unknown threatened his world…
He was a hero, cursed forever.
Cover Designed by: Colin F. Barnes
Publication Date: March 18, 2014
Genre: YA Mythology
Series: Mythos: Stories from Olympus #2/Oracle of Delphi #3.5
 
*WARNING* To be read after Prophecy of Solstice’s End (Oracle of Delphi #3)
Contains MAJOR spoilers!
 
Shunned by a family that doesn’t understand him, demigod Lenka Tahile aka “Swindle” is a complete loner and he likes it that way. Then he meets the hero, Ace Remedy, the brother of an infamous demigod Prince, and his life goes from bad to worse. Ace is loud, rude, and disruptive to his peaceful existence in every way. He’s also hilarious and daring, and Swindle ends up finding a friend just when he thought he’d never have another.
 
But little does he know, becoming friends with Ace was all part of the Fates’ plan. Now his past is slowly coming back to haunt him and there’s nothing he can do to stop it. Nothing but try not to bring to light the lost love, the failed hopes, and the cursed existence that he would kill to keep in the dark.
 
Five Facts about Hero, Cursed
 
1. Lenka Tahile is a South African name. The MC was born in South Africa.
2. “Swindle” is Lenka’s celestial name. He is a son of Hermes. Figure it out.
3. The hawk on the cover is not a tattoo. His name is Bill and he’s Swindle’s Fauna Morph, an animal that morphs into a weapon on command.
4. Though it isn’t showcased on the cover, Swindle has extremely curly hair. Out of control, I tell you.
5. Just like Solar, Defeated, this novella switches back and forth between the present and the past, and reveals what life was like for Swindle before the Oracle of Delphi came along.
Mythos: Stories from Olympus #1

 

Diantha Jones was born the day thousands of turkeys sacrificed their lives to fill millions of American bellies on November 22 which also happened to be Thanksgiving Day (Her mother says she owes her a turkey). She is a Journalism graduate who wants to be a career novelist (of books, not Facebook posts). When not writing or working, she is reading on her Nook, being hypnotized by Netflix or on a mission to procure french fries.

The Oracle of Delphi fantasy series is her first series. She is also the author of Mythos: Stories from Olympus, a companion series, and there is another fantasy series in the works. She also writes (new) adult fantasy/paranormal romance under the name A. Star. Invasion (An Alien Romance) is her first title released under this pen name. Future releases under A. Star include, Mythos: Gods and Lovers series, the Love & Steampunk series, the Purr, Inc. stories, and more.

 


Website  |  Twitter  |  Facebook  |  Goodreads  |  Amazon  |  Pinterest  |  DJ’s Book Corner

 

 

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