Tag Archives: Supernatural

Haunted Visions #BookReview

  • Title: Haunted VisionsPacific Cove: Haunted Visions (Pacific Cove Short Read Series Book 1) by [Grace, J.E]
  • Print Length: 93 pages
  • Publication Date: August 13, 2016
  • Sold by:Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Format:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Fantasy

A few months after Naomi is devastated when her sister is killed by a car walking to a friend’s house, she graduates college with an art degree and marries the man of her dreams, Jason. They embark on their newly romantic life together in Pacific Cove. However, life is less than happy when Naomi begins experiencing visions that keep her on edge.

Haunted Visions is a very light, quick read. My only issues is that the narrative tend to switch from past to present tense and back again, which can be confusing. The characters were two dimensional and their dialogue can be mediocre at times, but the story itself was very enjoyable. I read it in one sitting, eager to find out what was going to happen.

Haunted Visions is recommended to those who enjoy stories that include faith, love and has supernatural elements entwined. It is one that I wouldn’t mind reading again, and I’d be interested in seeing what other stories Ms. Grace will come up with.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Biography

J.E. Grace

J.E. Grace was born in California and has a background in Retail Management.

She now resides in the Midwest and retired from a career in real estate in 2012 to pursue her passion-writing. Her interests include poetry, painting in traditional oils/pastels, digital art and photography. Her work can be viewed on Society 6, Zazzle, and Fine Art America.

This is her debut science fiction novel. She tries to make her characters interesting and believable so that her readers can relate to them. Her writing has spiritual overtones due to her deep roots in her faith.

She is currently writing a fantasy novel with relationships to Christian values and is in the planning stages for a sequel to “The Zarion-Saving Mankind. Her new Pacific Cove Series Short Reads; Haunted Visions-Book 1 and Testament of Faith-Book 2, are due to be published Aug-Sept. 2016. There will also be a Book 3, entitled, “Love’s Enduring Legacy,” which she is currently working on.

Website: http://jegrace.webs.com

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#Bookreview Demon Road (The Demon Road Trilogy, Book 1) by Derek Landy (@DerekLandy) A road trip, a quest and a coming of age story to hell and back

Demon Road (The Demon Road Trilogy, Book 1) by Derek Landy
Demon Road (The Demon Road Trilogy, Book 1) by Derek Landy

REVIEWS FOR LITERARY WORLD REVIEWS

Title:   Demon Road (The Demon Road Trilogy, Book 1)
Author:   Derek Landy
ISBN13:  978-0008156923
ASIN:  B00UF812T0
Published:  January 1st 2016 Harper Collins
Pages:  512
Genre:  
Teen and YA Horror, Science Fiction and Fantasy, Adventure

Description:

The epic new thriller begins.

The creator of the number one best-selling Skulduggery Pleasant series returns with the story of a girl on the run from everything she loves…and the monsters that await her.

For anyone who ever thought their parents were monster…Amber Lamont is a normal 16-year-old. Smart but insecure, she spends most of her time online, where she can avoid her beautiful, aloof parents and their weird friends.

But when a shocking encounter reveals a horrifying secret, Amber is forced to go on the run. Killer cars, vampires, undead serial killers and red skinned, horned demons – Amber hurtles from one threat to the next, revealing the terror woven into the very fabric of her life. As her parents close in behind her, Amber’s only chance rests with her fellow travellers, who are not at all what they appear to be….

Witty, action-packed and heart stoppingly thrilling, Demon Road will take you on an epic road trip across the supernatural landscape of America. 

Body of review:

A road trip, a quest and a coming of age story to hell and back

Thanks to Net Galley and to Harper Collins Children’s Books for offering me a free copy of the novel in exchange for an unbiased review.

Demon Road is a coming of age novel of sorts. Amber, the protagonist, is sixteen and discovers that her parents, whom she’s always known weren’t exactly ordinary, are demons and so are their friends, and now she’s started turning too. Worse still, they’re determined to eat her to comply with the terms of a deal they made with the Shining Demon in exchange for power (not that they are particularly sorry about that). With the help of one of her parent’s friends, who’s decided the demonic lifestyle is no longer for her, Amber sets off on a journey to try and save herself by making her own deal. She travels in a car that’s not quite what it seems, with Milo, a bodyguard/chauffer that isn’t what he seems either. The novel follows them in their journey through the different stages of their trip, investigating the many clues, trying to find the one individual who might hold the secret to solving her problem.

Demon Road is also a road trip. The protagonist and her team (Milo and Glen, another character who’s also made a rather stupid deal and has ended up lumbered with a death mark) travel through the Demon Road of the title, a supernatural route linking strange beings, places and happenings, where everybody knows more than they say and people are never who they seem to be. The adventures Amber and her friends/associates (the relationships are open to interpretation) get into are fascinating and varied, going from towns haunted by supernatural serial killers, others with vampires gone out of control, a witch in love in the depths of a forest, winged creatures in New York, and lots of hiding and fighting. Any of the adventures they get involved in would make a great story in its own right and they ensure the plot keeps moving along at a good pace and never gets boring.

Demon Road is a quest. Amber makes a deal which results in her having to look for the only person who’s ever managed to trick the Shining Demon. Every stage of her quest brings her in contact with people, both human and supernatural beings, which have an impact on her and how she sees the world. She also has to come to terms with her new self and not all she learns is positive. As a hero (or heroine) she’s flawed. She can be compassionate and human, and the next minute act on impulse and hurt somebody. She can be quite clever at times and make stupid mistakes at others. She’s easy to anger and lacking in self-confidence but she can be magnificent. She’s not an immediately likeable character although her sense of humour and her capacity for self-reflection make her interesting. Like in all quests, the main character’s search becomes a search for her true self.

Because of all these things, and although the overall pace of the book is reasonably fast, it can feel uneven. It is composed of a number of set pieces interconnected by the trip resulting in a fair amount of telling rather than showing, as they always come upon places or events that have to be explained and grasped, and things slow down at that point and then accelerate when the action comes. Some of those episodes feel more rushed than others (for me the episode with the witch didn’t seem to quite fit in with the time allocated to it, and the bonding between the women and Amber seemed too fast, considering the amount of time they were together. On the other hand I loved the idea and the concept of that story) as if the clock counting down Amber’s time to complete her mission would speed up and slow down. Although it’s true that time is relative and the story is told from a subjective perspective…

The book is written in the third person although it follows Amber’s character and we get her insights and point of view. The writing is dynamic and easy and despite its length, the novel is a quick read.

We have very little information about most of the characters, although that’s in keeping with Amber’s point of view, and it helps us share her feelings, emotions, confusion and attempts at making sense of what’s going on. Milo and his relationship with his car is very intriguing and, at least for me, one of the big successes of the novel. We get some hints of his story but I get the feeling there’s much more to come. Glen might be a divisive one that some readers might love and others hate. I found him at times annoying but at others endearing.  Although there are some characters that don’t seem to have any redeeming qualities, most of them are grey rather than black or white, and I thought that added to the complexity of the book and gave it a touch of realism.

There isn’t a love story (at least not so far) and although that might put some readers of the genre off, I didn’t mind so much. The ending is both an ending and it sets off the stage for the next chapter in the story.

In sum this is a novel that packs a lot of stories into a single book, with characters that are interesting if not immediately likeable, and although not perfect, it’s a great read. I’m looking forward to the next book.

Ratings:
Realistic Characterization: 4/ 5
Made Me Think: 3.5/5
Overall enjoyment: 4.5/5
Readability: 4 /5
Recommended: 4.5/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
 

Buy it at:  
Format & Pricing:
Paperback:  $ 6.23 

Kindle: $6.84

Audiobook: $ 18.55

Hardcover: $ 9.21  

Olga Núñez Miret

@OlgaNM7

http://www.authortranslatorolga.com

http://www.OlgaNM.com

 

The Legacy of Fear Q&A with Vanessa A. Ryan @vryan333

RW: I’m reading The Legacy of Fear now and enjoying it. The entire idea is right up my alley. How do you come up with the titles of your books?

VANESSA: Sometimes the title just comes to me. Other times, I ask my family, friends, the publisher, or even strangers I might see on the street to help me choose the best wording of a preliminary title. They’ll all haHorrorAtTheLakebooksve different opinions, and then the hard part is making the final decision.

RW: I am getting the whole the feel of, well, spooky, are you a sunshine weather writer or rainy day type?

VANESSA: I like overcast days. In fact, I love overcast weather. I feel more creative when the sky is gray and the atmosphere is a little foggy. Sunny days are just for enjoying the warmth of the sun, smiling a lot and not thinking much.

RW: Tell us about how writing regime, if you have one that is?

VANESSA: My writing schedule is to write at least a thousand words a day, seven days a week, for the first draft. Most of that happens late at night, when the phone is least likely to ring. I may stay up until two in the morning to get in those thousand words, especially when I’ve had a busy day doing something else. I know if I don’t persevere, I won’t get that first draft written. As for revisions and rewrites, I like those the best. The hard work is already done. Cutting, revising and adding is the fun part.

RW: Do you jump out of bed with coffee in hand or are you an afternoon writer?

I never jump out of bed for anything, unless the house is on fire––which has happened to me. I like coffee and breakfast in the morning, and reading the Los Angeles Times. Three days a week I read it online, and four days a week I get it delivered. It’s an important part of my daily routine. I never turn on the TV or radio for the news in the morning. I’m the type who wakes up slowly. I like to know what’s going on in the world, but without someone barking at me. If I can, I will write in the afternoon for a while. I might finish what I started writing in the afternoon later that night, if I didn’t get enough done.

RW: What do you have to avoid when writing a book?

VANESSA: I have to avoid too many other activities, or cut the time I devote to them. And since I’ve always got ideas in my head for new stories, I have to stop thinking of them so I can write the book I’ve already started.

RW: Do you ever get burned out?

VANESSA: Sure. Writing is work. It’s putting in the time. Since December, I have been taking a break. But the holidays are over, and tomorrow, I will begin looking at the edits of the last book in my trilogy, Horror At The Lake, A Vampire Tale. However, even when I’m not writing, I’m thinking of my next book or series of books.

RW: How do you start to write a book? What is the first step?V.Ryan

VANESSA: The first step is to decide which book floating around in my head I am going to commit to writing down. I usually know who the main character is and whether I’m going to write in the first person or in the third, but I will have to rough out the secondary characters. The next most important thing is to figure out the ending. The challenge then, is how to get from the beginning to the end. Sometimes I write plot points on three by five cards, and sometimes I just wing it and start writing. I try to write chapters that are about ten pages long, and I read over what I wrote yesterday, before I begin writing again.

RW: What books have most influenced your life most?

VANESSA: I think the books of Carlos Castaneda, Curt Vonnegut, Jerzy Kosinsky, and the mystery writers of the twentieth century, such Agatha Christie and Ross MacDonald. Also the noir writers, such as Cornell Woolrich, Charles Willeford and Dorothy B. Hughes. But one of the most important influences in my life was meeting Ray Bradbury after a lecture he gave. I had read Death Is A Lonely Business, and although not one of his most famous books, it is set in Venice, CA, where I once lived. It inspired me to write my paranormal novel A Blue Moon, which also takes place in Venice, CA. It was thrilling to meet the writer who inspired me to write the book.

RW: Recently one of our Team here on LWI wrote an article about being a writer versus being an author. Do you see writing as a career?

VANESSA: I do see writing as a career. Of course, every writer hopes to have a best seller, but regardless, I will keep at it as long as I have stories I feel impelled to write.

RW: Do you recall how your interest in writing first came to life?

VANESSA: I started writing in the third grade. My teacher allotted a portion of her lessons to creative writing every week. In the sixth grade, we put on a school play and I wrote the script.

RW: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

VANESSA: No. I’ll just write another book.

RW: What are you working on now?

palette-for-murderVANESSA: I am currently working on another traditional mystery, the second in the Lana Davis series, titled A Date For Murder. The first, A Palette For Murder, will be released this May by Five Star Publishing.

RW: How do you de-stress from those moments of word overload or word weary?

VANESSA: I don’t know that I get tired of looking at words, but I do need to take time off. I love walking in a park near my house, watching my favorite TV shows, traveling and socializing with friends.

RW: Book covers are more important than people think. I mean an author knows but I like how yours in a series almost brand the series. What’s the book cover process for you?

VANESSA: The publishers of my books have designers and they create covers from settings in the books that I describe to them.

RW: What was the hardest part of writing your book?

VANESSA: That first draft is always the hardest part.

RW: I agree with you there. Although my gazillionth draft seems to be hard too. Now what did you learn during the writing of The Legacy of Fear and really any book you write?

VANESSA: I have learned to be more forgiving. All my characters have flaws, some worse than others, but they have some redeeming or humanizing characteristics as well.

RW: What is one piece of advice you would give another writer?

VANESSA: Talk less and listen more. I get many of my ideas for stories from what people say.

RW: And now, what last thought for our friends today?

VANESSA: I hope you enjoy my books and the journeys they take you on.

 

Vanessa A. Ryan is the author of:

Horror At The Lake, A Vampire Tale (mystery trilogy):

Book 1, The Legacy Of Fear: http://vanessaaryan.com/TheLegacyOfFear.html#buy

Book 2, The Trail Of Terrorhttp://vanessaaryan.com/TheTrailofTerror.html#buy

Book 3, The Blood Of Redemptioncoming in April
A Palette For Murder pre-order now: http://vanessaaryan.com/APaletteForMurder.html#buycoming in April

 

Follow Vanessa A. Ryan at:
https://twitter.com/vryan333
http://vanessaryanwriter.blogspot.com
https://www.facebook.com/VanessaRyan33

http://www.amazon.com/author/vryan
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2543030

 There you have readers. By the way, you’ve seen Vanessa before. You may not realize it but I know many of you have. Snoop around and you’ll discover from where. By her books. I’m enjoying The Legacy of Fear now.~@RonovanWrites

 

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Q&A Kent Whittington To Whom Shall You Enquire? @KentWhittington

To Whom Shall You Enquire?

Kent Whittington

 Sometimes you just come across someone who you find interesting. It might be their name, an image, just anything. My guest today was interesting to me for all those reasons and once we communicated about a possible interview I wanted to know more. Then came his answers to my questions. We have a few things in common. Meet . . .

 

 Kent Whittington

Kent_W

RW: Where are you from?

KW: I was born in Montrose, Colorado and spent my youth betweenin Anchorage, Alaska, Ogden, and Pleasantview (Utah), and Sacramento, Davis, and Courtland (California) before finally settling down (for now) in Orangevale, California. Oh! I also spent some time in New Jersey, but the less said about that the better!

RW: Who are your favorite authors?

KW: I used to manage a small chain bookstore, so I had access to a myriad of books and authors from all genres, so it’s hard to nail down just a few. If you were to ask which authors have inspired me, Stephen King, Jim Butcher, Diana Rowland, and Kevin J. Anderson come to mind. King has a mind that I love to play in from time to time. I love his character development as much as the plots.  Both are important factors in any writing. You have to have both for a story to mesh and he is a master! Jim Butcher’s style of Urban fantasy/horror in his “Dresden Files” books match my style very well and I adore each and every one of his characters (even the villains!).  As for Ms. Rowland and Mr. Anderson, I enjoy their tongue-in-cheek approach to their stories. The quirkier, the better!

RW: What is your favorite beverage to drink, any kind?

KW: I’m a soda nut.  It’s not good for me, I know.  I try and stay away from the caffeinated drinks though, and limit myself mostly to a root beer when I’m out dining. I’m not a drinker, but on special occasions, I have been known to down a wine cooler or two. What can I say, I’m a wild man!

 

RW: What is your escape from writing when you are at that about to explode point?

KW: I have been heavily into the arts ever since I was a kid and I currently create graphic art in the form of T-shirt designs. Much of my current work can be seen at my freelance webpage (freelanced.com/kentwhittington) and some of my work is currently available at Redbubble (redbubble.com/people/foxfeather). When I get to the exploding point for this, I usually watch some television or catch a movie, maybe even read a book.

 Kent_Eleventh_Hour_Dr.Who Kent_Game_of_Empires Kent_Standoff

 

RW: What is your favorite word?

KW: Defenestrate. Have you ever wanted to defenestrate something before? It can be very satisfying!

RW: What is your background in writing, what makes you a writer?

KW: The funny thing is, I hated writing when I was a kid. All I ever wanted to do was draw. It wasn’t until my teens that I even thought about writing. Back then I was doing both when I created my own graphic novel.  The writing was horrible, but I did discover that it could be fun to put words to my comics and characters. This lead to attempts at fantasy fiction novels and plays.  I even tried my hand at poetry (for the ladies, y’know?) and did pretty well. Once I discovered RPGs like Dungeons and Dragons, the floodgates opened and I was writing all of the time.  I had discovered my muse and his name was Gygax! I wrote scenarios for games that were epic in nature. The next thing I knew I was writing for the sheer enjoyment of writing!

RW: What is the title of your story and why did you choose that name?

KW: My story, “To Whom Shall You Enquire?” was my first attempt at steampunk fiction. Of course, I love the supernatural and steampunk is one of that genre’s natural playgrounds so the incorporation was easy. The characters in the story are basically Victorian ghostbusters so the title is a play on the phrase, “Who you gonna call?”.

RW: What genre does your story fall into?

KW: Steampunk and supernatural with a little urban fantasy thrown in for good measure.

RW: Why do you write in the genre that you do?

KW: I love the supernatural, always have!  Urban horror puts it in the here and now and allows the “what if?” to shine through.  For me, a story isn’t complete unless you throw a monster into the mix.

RW: Tell us a little about your story.

KW: “To Whom Shall You Enquire?” tells the story of a young doctor in Victorian London who finds himself under attack by a supernatural force. While he doesn’t believe in the supernatural, the events leave him no choice but to take a friend’s advice and call upon the assistance of a pair of spiritual eviction experts (a.k.a. ghostbusters).

RW: What inspired the story?

KW: It was borrowed from a novel I am working on. The organization the characters belong to is the same as in the novel, just set back for Victorian times and given a steampunk flavor.

RW: Tell us about your main character(s) and what you think will connect them to readers.

KW Tough question. The main characters are two “spectral exterminators” named Johannes Abraham and Isabella Stanton. They are both expatriates from their home countries who have come together over the mutual loss of their spouses. Both joined the organization they work for in an effort to contact their loved ones in the afterlife and have become companions to one another due to their shared loss. Johannes is an inventor who creates devices for their work, while Isabella is a sensitive who can see spirits. Think of them as Victorian ghostbusters.

I think that their bond through their mutual loss makes them very relatable characters and, while they both share a fondness for one another, it is that loss that prevents them from having more than simply a working relationship. The loss is still very fresh for both of them, yet they are their own small support group.

RW: Who would play your main character(s) in a movie?

KW:  Ashley Green from the Twilight Saga would make a wonderful Isabella, while my choice for Joannes would be Sleepy Hollow’s Tom Mison.

Tom_MisonAshley_Greene

RW: What message do you think your story delivers to the reader?

KW: I’m not certain. I’m sure that there is probably a message there, likely that there are bonds beyond death and loss, but I like to think that I wrote the story purely for enjoyment’s sake.

RW: What did you learn about yourself from writing this story?

KW: I realized through the completion of the story that I really am a writer, and have what it takes to weave a good tale.  I am gratified that others get to learn this about me as well.

RW: Describe your story in one word.

KW: Entertaining. That’s all anyone really wants their books to be, right?

RW: Where can we get your story now?

KW: My story is available in an anthology called “Of Hexes and Hauntings: Tales From the Other Side” through Witty Bard Publishing.  It can be found on Amazon.com currently in eBook format.

Hexes

RW: What other work do you have to share with us and can you tell us a little about them?

KW: This is my second published work. The first is a little story called “The Huntress” which is about a vampire who works as an assassin for the Vatican. She has been redeemed by the church and now hunts the evil denizens in our supernatural world. In the story, she is in Paris hunting an undead creature haunting the Paris Underground. This is also a free publication available at www.sendyourscript.com/novels-short-stories/c1219 in PDF format. I invite all of your readers to enjoy it.

RW: How do people connect with you through all forms of social media?

KW: I can be found at the following links:
Facebook

About me.com/kentwhittington

RW: Do you currently have representation? If so who, and if not describe what qualities you would like in an agent and what you would bring to the relationship.

KW: No, I don’t have an agent yet. I would probably want a friendly, motivational person who is an editing monster and who wants my success for me as much as themselves. I would seek out an agent who meshes with my personality; a fellow geek.

I would bring friendship and a commitment to writing that would benefit us both. After all, we both want to get paid.

RW: What are you working on right now?

KW: I have two novels in the works right now. The first is called “Crimson Cove,” about a small town in Northern California besieged by evil and the one man who can stop it. Then there is “The Beastly Arms” about a young woman who moves into a condo and finds the tenants are creatures from legend and myth in disguise.

RW: What book are you reading at this time?

KW: Nothing yet, but I’m going to pick up a copy of Jim Butcher’s “Skin Game” in the morning.

RW: What is your biggest tip for someone to getting published?

KW: Write, and write often. Do whatever you can to get published, be it free publications, contests, submissions to publishers or even self publishing. Get others to discover your work.

RW: If you could have written any book that exists, other than your own, what would it be and why?

KW: Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files series because his stories so closely resemble my own.

 

What do Kent and I have in common? We both love Jim Butcher. I’m not certain if he would be jealous to discover I had a long conversation with Jim at Dragoncon in Atlanta one time, or got him to sign one of his books for me. Probably not. This was during the first round of Dresden books. If Kent can capture that early Dresden Files magic, we will be hearing about him for a long time. Check on the free work he mentioned and buy this book as well.

Remember to write a review when you read a book.

Much Respect

Ronovan

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