The Radhost Complector shows its bearer the way to other world realms and planes of existence. Etched inside you will find many dead ends and oubliettes tempting you to stray from the paths that lead to Avalon, Atlantis, Asgard, Midgard, Helheim and tir N
The Sultan’s Elephant is a show, specifically a piece of marionette street theater featuring a giant mechanical elephant. It was created in 2004 by the French theater company Royal de Luxe
I quite enjoyed this odd story running beneath an explicit beginning. The book is compelling and encourages the exploration of deep concepts. It teased me with hints of the bigger picture that were so intriguing I kept going in the hopes of understanding the whole. Obviously, had I started with part 1, I might have known more of the set-up, but if so, you’re still left with a tense conflict between the needs of the many and the desires of the few, namely Haithem and Angelina. They don’t make…
The characters, whether historical figure cameos or members of the Chase family, felt rich with specifics and opinions. The friendship that grows between Kendra (Colin’s little sister) and Amy is wonderful, with both emotional and humorous moments. Then there’s Colin’s love of history and how he makes the damaged castles come to life as another example where many more remain.
The story is strong in both the characters and the tale it tells. There’s trouble on personal and greater levels, but everything is offered in a personal way so we get the ground floor view. Alanna never supports a value by station perspective, and the story reveals the costs of becoming separate from the populace in many small ways.
This is not a simple world with a simple conflict. You take all the magical beings on Earth, transport them into a pocket world (Portiside) at the time of the great flood, leave these very different cultures to stew for generations, then give us the viewpoint of a police force mired in shifter rules, vampire guidelines, fae, and other rule sets. In terms of cultural clash and conspiracy, this is a world ripe with possibility and has a storyteller capable of making both the people and the…
Ultimately, By Fire Above is a solid sequel to the first, offering a look at prejudice and bias from several perspectives, and not always the ones you’d expect, either. The story is strong, the underlying themes are incorporated well, and the characters are delightful and annoying in turn, just as they should be.
Ultimately, I enjoyed the story. It is fun in a campy way, offering a sometimes light tale mixed with a tangle of conspiracies and less risk than you might expect despite appearances. It manages to bring up deeper issues in context, but doesn’t require the reader to think hard in order to enjoy the story. This makes it a more complex read in reflection than it felt when swept up in the moment.
Gutshot is more of a survival story than a disaster one despite starting in the middle of a huge crisis they later realize is planet-wide. In keeping with the author’s style, it is seen from the point of view (POV) of the little people. Cities are washing away, mountains become islands, and surely somewhere, world leaders are attempting to figure out a path to recovery, but unlike a disaster movie, they are irrelevant.
Lightweight is anything but light in everything it touches on. It has the traditional romance beats, and when things fall apart, it’s huge. There are many light, fun, and encouraging moments, too. At points, it read as a women’s fiction because of the close focus on Isla, the main character, along with her cousin Grace. The first person narrative is where a lot of the deeper issues come in, but if anything, they made the book more well-rounded.
It’s a silly little story with a silly ending, but at the same time, it’s a moving tale of fears and relationships, and of laying claim to your place in the world instead of accepting what you believe is true. I very much enjoyed the time I spent in this world and with these characters.
The writing is rich. It’s full of body language and descriptive details that bring the characters to life. This makes their motivations grounded in a way speech alone might not have been able to do. A simple comparison of the experiences visible in two people’s eyes reveals their character more than stating it outright. The culture, or I should say cultures, is well drawn, while there is a real difference between the members of the different cultures in their attitudes and approaches. For…