Robin’s Review of In the Midst of Magic

In the Midst of Magic

 by Christian Cura

Rating: 5 out of 5.
In the Midst of Magic
by Christian Cura

Meet Kara Hartman, a photojournalist who is hiding her magic from the world. 
Traumatized by her brother's death, she wants nothing more to do with magic. But just when she thought she could neglect her gift, it becomes apparent that the universe has other plans for Kara. When she discovers that an old foe has broken out of prison, hellbent on destroying her new life, Kara has no choice but to embrace the only power that can stop her.
Trigger Warnings: Violence is prevalent throughout the story, and there is occasional profanity. There is an explicit scene between two consenting adults, and references to bullying and cheating.
Robin's Review: This is so many genres combined that I’m not sure what to call it. It has action and adventure. It has magic and sorcery. It has romance and betrayal. It has murder and suspense. Finally, it has thrills and coming of age aspects. It is well written and fast paced with a hint of urgency to see what happens next. And there is always something happening. The world building is rich and descriptive, and the characters are fun and relatable.
All in all, a very good read. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Urban Fantasy reads.
It was my pleasure to receive a free copy of this book but that does not in any way affect my opinions in this review of this entertaining story.

#LGBTQ+ #fantasy #paranormal #urbanfantasy #thriller #suspense

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Robin’s Review of Charlie: Zombie Slayer Book 1

Charlie: YA Zombie Horror Story Zombie Slayer Book 1

by Gayle Katz

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Charlie: Zombie Slayer Book 1                         
by Gayle Katz

A snarky teenager. A new school to navigate. Can Charlie stop a zombie apocalypse in time for finals?
After she moves across the country and out of the hot zone, Charlie hopes to leave hunting behind. She's ready to make some friends at her new high school. But the past she hoped to bury rises again with a fresh, city-wide outbreak.

So much for settling into a normal life...

Desperate to stop the walking dead, Charlie enlists the help of some classmates to find patient zero. But as the scourge spreads, her talents may not be enough to keep them alive.

Will Charlie discover the source of the infection, or will she meet a gruesome end?

Charlie is the first action-packed novel in the Zombie Slayer apocalypse series. If you like sassy heroines, witty banter, and over-the-top zombie brawls, then you’ll love Gayle Katz’s tale of high school angst and flesh-eating walkers.

Zombie slayer or zslayer, Charlie Warner a 11th grade student moves from her hometown of Dallas, Texas giving up slaying to move with her Grandmother to Portland Oregon. Only her mentor, Stewart George follows her with bad news. The zombie leader, zleader bit someone before it died and that “person” came back to Portland and has started infecting others. So she must slay again. Not wanting to reveal her true calling to anyone in the beginning especially her friends Owen and Zan because that would put them in danger. As she searches for the new zleader and tries to figure out the supplier of the new drug, “zrug” she’s just your typical teenager. Yea right! What more could go wrong? Don’t ask just read it for yourself.
Robin's Review: I really loved this story and quickly became addicted. It’s fun and snarky but also, Zombies! The world that Katz has built, is a new and refreshing change from the usual zombie story. I’m a sucker for a strong female character with a kick butt personality and boy does this book have that in bulk. The characters are well written, and the plot was full of action and slaying. It was suspenseful, a real page turner, I was always ready to find out what happens next. The funny quips had me laughing from the get-go. I really, really, enjoyed this book. It was a lot of fun and hugely entertaining. Like some of my previous reviews, I would describe this as a “Cozy Zombie” apocalypse story. I could see myself reading it again and again, of course after I have read the rest of the series. Looks like it’s gonna be a few sleepless nights for me, and I hope for you also. Gayle Katz has authored a fantastic story and now, will be one of my go to authors. Will I read anything she writes? Books? Yes. Novellas? Yup. Cereal boxes? You bet!
Zombie Tips:

A zombie leader could mask as a human, but their eyes would still glow green.

Favorite Lines:

“Nope, this is a new drug. It’s believed that it’s manufactured from zombie blood and has a street name of zrug, at least that’s what I’m told.”

“It’s two grand for a finger,” he replied. “A finger?” she asked. “For real?”

“I’d feel more confident that you had the right equipment, than buying from some questionable Portland occult store for the tourists.”

“They had a peek, and then decided to leave. Wise move. If there were any more zombies here, they’d quickly be avocado toast.”

Next in the Series:

Second Strain: YA Zombie Horror Story (Zombie Slayer Book 2)

Claw: YA Zombie Horror Story (Zombie Slayer Book 3)

Conzpiracy: YA Zombie Horror Story (Zombie Slayer Book 4)

Spell to Hell: YA Zombie Horror Story (Zombie Slayer Book 5)

Good Zombie: YA Zombie Horror Story (Zombie Slayer Book 6)

Exorcizm: YA Zombie Horror Story (Zombie Slayer Book 7)

Thanks so much for a review copy of this book. I am voluntarily leaving a review of my personal opinion.

Young Adult
Science Fiction

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No Bones About It

He’s a skeleton who used to be a cop.

 by Rachel Ford

Rating: 5 out of 5.
No Bones About It (Flint & Co Paranormal Investigations Book 1)
by Rachel Ford

He’s a skeleton who used to be a cop. I’m a Freak who used to be a detective. Together, we’re going to find the woman I love.

Technically, the PD hasn’t fired me yet. But when my girlfriend, the star witness in the biggest embezzlement case in a century, went missing, I stepped on some toes. And maybe busted a senior detective’s nose.

He had it coming. He’s hiding something. I’m going to find out what, and I’m going to find my fiancée. But I can’t do it alone.

In a world of magic and undead beings, Normies avoid Freaks like me like the plague. Our magic terrifies them.

But there’s one place I know I can turn to find the help I need: the undead. So here I am, trusting the fate of my career and the love of my life to the bony hands of a 150-year-old undead investigator.

And that's a recipe for disaster. No bones about it.

My Review:

August 13th, 2030, twelve minutes after nine a meteor hit New Boston. It wasn’t the end of the world. It was just the end of life as we knew it. All over the planet, the dead returned to life, or undeath, or whatever they call it. For the most part, and for most people effected, the impact had been positive: gained abilities, a second life, and so on.

That being said Detective Jill Wallace gifted with clairvoyance and fire magic was investigating her missing fiancée, Natalie Lyons with the help of former cop, private investigator and skeleton “Flinty” Jack. But Chief Anders and Detective Sean O’Donnell believe no crime was committed and Detective Wallace is losing her stuff even though Natalie was set to testify in the Senator Vandermeer son’s embezzlement case.

What a delightfully amusing story full of unusual and fun characters. The world building was fantastic going above and beyond the apocalyptic event. In this dystopian world, we find out how things have changed, meet the brilliantly smart, strong characters, and become immersed in their lives. Fabulous throughout, the story had me wanting more by the end.

This is the first book in the series, and I have to say I can’t wait for next book to see where Rachel Ford goes with the story. 

Favorite lines:

“I’m a rationalist. A man of science. As I exist in the natural world, my state is not an unnatural or supernatural one.”

“As I exist in the natural world, my state is not an unnatural or supernatural one.”

“I mean, uh…well, I can shoot fireballs from my fingertips. I’m not sure what you would call that, except magic?” “A weaponized exothermal chemical process,” he said, with a shrug of his shoulder blades. “Yeah, that really rolls off the tongue.” “An‘ability,’ if you prefer brevity. That seems to be all the rage these days. But I take your meaning: you’re a Freak.”

“I’d learned long ago to sort problems into two very useful categories, and act accordingly: my problems, and someone else’s problems.” “This was a him problem, not a me problem. So, I could feel free to ignore it.”

“Flinty Jack, you sentient Halloween ornament, what the hell are you doing calling me at this ungodly hour?”

“Keep an eye on that bone bag, will you? He’s a real pain in the ass, but I’d be sorry if he got his irritating self-killed.”

“Flesh Sack, Breather, Skin Bag, Freak, Bone Bag, Normies, Undead and Ferals.”

Throw Me a Bone (Flint & Co Paranormal Investigations Book 2)
This title will be released on May 25, 2022.

Urban Fantasy
Science Fiction

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A Collection Of Short Stories From Various Horror Anthologies

 by Sylvester Barzey

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Stitches: A Collection of Short Stories from Various Horror Anthologies
by Sylvester Barzey

Sylvester Barzey has scoured the darkest reaches of his mind and ripped his favorite twisted tales from five anthologies to create this one collection of genre blended horror. Stitches is one collection that won't only get under your skin it will bury itself in your flesh!

The five tales that make up this collection are:

•Blood Note (First Published in Descent into Darkness)
•Lisa (First Published In 7 Sins of The Apocalypse)
•Unfit (First Published in Mad Like Me)
•Adam (First Published in Undead Worlds)
•Shades of Blue (First Published in Voices of Romance)

Go beyond your comfort zone and find out what's really under your skin.

Read "Stitches" today!

My Review

This Collection Contains Subject Matter Such As:
Suicide, Harm to Children, Mental illness, Domestic Violence, Elderly Abuse, Kidnapping, Drugging, Bullying, Cheating, Rape

I received this E-book by winning a contest during a giveaway on July 31st from my favorite Facebook group Horror Writers Ink.

I was saving this read for October but now that I have read it, I’m sorry I waited so long to get to it. These are short stories so I will not give anything away. I loved this book and the stories in it. They were creepy, chilling, and full of terror. I greatly appreciated Sylvester Barzey writing and will read any of his books from now on.

Short Stories

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The Lament of Death: 

My name is Kyara, and I am a banshee.

Children of Chaos Series

 by Maria Vermisoglou

Rating: 5 out of 5.
The Lament of Death: Children of Chaos Series
by Maria Vermisoglou

My name is Kyara, and I am a banshee.

My job? Bringing the dead to the other side.

I expected to become a healer...
…But fate bestowed me with a curse.

Cause, yeah. Being a Banshee is a curse.
I'm hated by my friends and family, and I'm kind of stuck in the Realm of Silver, the last place I want to be. But if I don't accept my job and take souls to their next stop, well, things will get bad fast. The wicked ones will drown the world in darkness, while the rest. I don’t even want to know.

What I really want is to gather the strength I need to become who I want to be.
Is it even possible to do my job with all this pressure from... everybody?

Prepare for an epic adventure!

My Review:
Kyara comes into her powers after turning sixteen. Thinking she was to become a healer, only to find out that she is something else is really hard on her and her relationships. This is really a fantastic coming of age story in a dystopian world setting. I really felt for Kyara as a character. To be different, bullied, and shunned is difficult to say the least. She had amazing growth and maturity that made this story a great read.


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Poems About U

by Sumera Farman

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Poems About U
by Sumera Farman

A collection of poetry which tells the story of a one-sided love affair. It shows the beginnings of a nameless relationship and the ending of a relationship including its devastating emotional and mental effects on the person who is the giver of unrequited love. This book is guaranteed to make you think of your lost loves and there will definitely be a poem or verse that you are able to resonate with. It's a true representation of a breakdown of a relationship.

OMG! This is a book of short, succulent, and powerful poems that take you through the feelings of the author and maybe even you. It depicts the journey of one-sided love. This made me feel so many emotions. This was a soul-stirring journey from start to finish. It was a true and honest take on unrequited love.

Short Story

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 by David Viergutz

Rating: 5 out of 5.
by David Viergutz

They knew there was something waiting, hiding, watching…

The Wendigo craves flesh and will be a slave to its hunger forever.

James Pope and his wife Rebecca share a son...and a marriage crippled by dysfunction. When James's alcoholism culminates to his arrest, Rebecca promptly moves out and files for divorce. To clear her head, she attempts an ill-prepared adventure in the Rocky Mountains with her son.

A day into the trip, James receives a cryptic text with coordinates to a restricted section of the forest near where his estranged wife and son are visiting.

But when all attempts to contact them fail, James assumes the worst. He springs into action to help his family...and hopefully get a second chance with Rebecca.

Soon, his rescue mission becomes a fight for the family's survival against a horrifying creature of legend, the Wendigo. Now, they can all finally agree on something: They aren't alone in the woods.

The story takes place in the Appalachian Mountains in Felton Forest (Fell or Foul Forest) Michigan on a preserve in a restricted zone. It is written from the point of view of each character.
James Pope and his wife Rebecka and son Jr.
Edgar Wiles and Joe Corrinth trackers.
Arnie House forest ranger and supervisor of the park

Aside from the proofreading errors this was an excellent story that I couldn’t and didn’t put down.

The storyline was new and inventive. It was an easy to read suspenseful telling of an urban myth. Extremely fun and entertaining.

The characters were well thought out and cleverly relatable. My favorite was Jr with his coming-of-age test.

My favorite lines from the book are:

“Lime green pinto screaming bitch, because it’s insufferable whine when it’s started up cold and it’s consistent nagging when it’s brakes squeaked. “

“I’ll tune you up”

“Stop and rob”

This title will be released on October 11, 2021.

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Candle Magick for Beginners: A Comprehensive Guide to Spells and Rituals

 by Cassandra Jade

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Candle Magick for Beginners: A Comprehensive Guide to Spells and Rituals by Cassandra Jade

Are you new to the world of Witchcraft? Ready to step into your power and create the life of your dreams? You have come to the right place.

In this guide, you will learn all the foundations of how to perform a spell using candle magick. You'll learn everything from mental work and preparation to what kind of candles to use and when to perform your rituals. Once you have your basic knowledge down, an entire chapter is dedicated to 20+ spells on love, self-confidence, wealth, and more.

In Candle Magick for Beginners, you will learn:
•History on paganism and candle magick
•Shadow work and how it's necessary for manifestation
•Astrology and timing for rituals
•How to choose the shape, size, and color of your candle
•Herbs, oils, and other elements to dress your candle in and enhance your rituals
•How to create your own spells
And much, much more.

Candle Magick for Beginners is your guide to access and enhance the innate power already present within you.

I really loved this book. No matter what or how you practice, you can glean valuable information from this book. Easy to understand and comprehensive. I would recommend this book to any level of practitioner.

#Candles #Magic #Spells #Ritual
#Herbs #Oils #Astrology #Moon Phases

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Marked by an angel. Desired by demons. Desperate to be left alone

Sent: Marked By Angels

by K.C. Bellinger

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Sent: Marked By Angels
by K.C. Bellinger

Marked by an angel. Desired by demons. Desperate to be left alone.

Dustyn Walker has never seen an angel, but the birthmark on her back and the magical abilities she’s suddenly gained are undeniably celestial. After a series of earth-alternating events, a large population of the earth died, and other-worldly creatures roamed freely. When she realized no one else in her town could see them, she retreated to her families’ cabin in the mountains.

Returning to town for a supply run and to visit her friend, Dustyn quickly senses a change in town. Something is amiss with the demon activity. When a master demon returns to check on his descendants, Dustyn gets caught up in the family drama. Can she slip out unharmed and live the life she desperately desires, or will she be forced to aid her merciless enemy?

I really loved this story. It was interesting to read about demons and angels and how they are portrayed in this world.

Science Fiction

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Review: This Too Shall Pass

by Marissa Billions

This Too Shall Pass

by Marisa Billions

Cynical and sardonic Eva Brooks ponders what it would take to be satisfied in life.

She fights against familial expectations, societal constraints, and her own desires. Landing herself in an unsatisfying marriage and conventional life, Eva realizes that she is gloomier than ever.

A reunion with Riley, the woman of her dreams, changes her life forever.

A future of happiness hovers on the horizon, beckoning her, calling her forever forwards.

Then reality strikes and it hits hard.

Doug, Eva’s ex-husband, is not going to let Eva walk away easily. Just when Eva thinks she has it all, he puts their son in the care of his new wife, Lucy, a controlling, abusive and ever angry woman.

After trying unsuccessfully to protect her son via orthodox methods, life, and death, take a twist.

A ghostly turn of events has Eva trying to decide to what lengths she will go to protect her child.

Can Eva use her haunting new ability to help her son?

This is a really good book. As a mother it affected me to the point of tears. It had a riveting plot and characters.


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