Book Review: The Forest House by Tamara Rokicki

The Forest House by Tamara Rokicki
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Warning: Minor Spoilers

The Forest House, Book One of The Ashar Prophecies, is a promising young adult paranormal fantasy from debut author Tamara Rokicki. The book adds a new twist to vampire lore while still keeping  favorite mores alive.

The greatest strength of this novel is its pacing. It’s one of those books where you sit down intending to read one chapter and end up reading six instead. It pulls you brilliantly along with lead character Hera in her journey from anxiety-ridden outcast to high priestess of a sect of vampires she didn’t even know existed. (She didn’t know there were vampires, let alone castes of them!)

The characters, most notably Hera herself, are believable and relatable with strong and unique voices. I was a little worried when I got to the kidnapping part. Kidnapping stories can quickly cross the line to feeling contrived, but with a strong hold on her character and her motivations, Rokicki plays it perfectly.

I feel like we’re still getting to know Aethen, Hera’s love interest, but that’s natural since The Forest House is all from Hera’s point of view. In fact, it makes me want to go grab Rokicki’s short story, “Aethen’s Awakening” to get to know him even better.

the forest house, tamara rokicki, book reviewI am a fiction editor, so I’m kind of nitpicky about these things. I felt the book could have used one more pass for things like the occasional dropped word, wrong word (expect vs. except), and dangling participle. However, these issues were minor and in no way impeded my enjoyment of this story.

It’s a definite page turner. Don’t be surprised when you finish it and are asking for the next one. Write quickly, Rokicki, all right?

Book Review: Cry Wolf by Bridget Essex

Cry Wolf by Bridget Essex
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This lesbian paranormal romance pulled me in first with its quirky and snark main character, Hayley, and second with its excellent pacing. The book kept me turning page after page, even when I should have been doing something else.

Essex does an excellent job creating believable, crackling chemistry between Hayley and her love interest, Kay, even even though there is not even a kiss until the last quarter of the book.

Book Review: The Scribe by Elizabeth Hunter

The Scribe by Elizabeth Hunter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is a mix of romance and supernatural elements. The supernatural concept of this book very intriguing and new to me at least, although it’s origins and inspiration are old.

The initial third or so of the book was superbly done. It pulled me right in. The author takes us into Ava’s world and introduces the supernatural elements of the Irin very well.

Book Review: Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher

Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Like many fans of the Dresden Files, I was a little hesitant to listen to Furies of Calderon. I had started to read the paperback once or twice before and just couldn’t get past the first chapter. I had the same issue with Butcher’s The Aeronaut’s Windlass. However, with both books, audio proved to be the right format for me.

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child



Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts 1 & 2 by John Tiffany
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

 

 

spoiler alert

I am a big fan of the original seven Harry Potter books, so I was eager to read this. As a member of my local community theater, I wasn’t put off by the fact that it was a script either. However, in the end, the story felt disjointed, and I didn’t have a chance to connect with the characters because it moved so fast from time to time and place to place.