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Tag Archives: ARC

the reaverTitle: The Reaver
Author: Richard Lee Byers
Pages: 352 (Ebook)
Rating: 4/5

THE REAVER came out February 4th! I received an ebook copy from Netgalley for review.

In the 4th book of the multi-author Sundering series, Richard Lee Byers introduces Anton Marivaldi—a renowned reaver with an insatiable thirst for bounty and a moral compass that always leads him toward the evil he’s never tried.

Endless, pounding rain afflict the Sea of Fallen Stars and the coastal regions surrounding it. Harvests are failing, travel and trade are disrupted, and civilized forces are giving way to the deluges caused by the storms. In panic and despair, many have turned to the goddess Umberlee, Queen of the Deeps, offering her sacrifices with hope that they will be spared the inevitable reckoning of her perpetual tempest.

Evendur Highcastle, undead pirate captain, risen from the depths to assume the mantle of Umberlee’s Chosen, takes advantage of the people’s desperation to strike for both spiritual and temporal power in her name.

Vying with Highcastle for the hearts and minds of the people is Stedd Whitehorn, a little boy and the chosen of a god thought lost to time: Lathander, the Morninglord. In a time of such upheaval, Stedd’s message of renewal and hope runs in stark contrast to the savage ethos of Highcastle and his waveservants.

When Anton captures the boy in order to collect Highcastle’s considerable bounty, the reaver is quickly caught in the riptide caused by the sundering of worlds.

Start out with a fight scene. Check. Pirates and ships and magic and awesome powers. Check. Keep me interested. Yep, check. Wow, this book blew me away. I loved reading this! I had no trouble picking up where I left off whenever I had to put it down and I enjoyed Anton Marivaldi’s adventure with Stedd and Umara. I love reading from the bad guy’s perspective which made it even better when I got to read from Stedd’s point because it was so refreshingly different. Anton had me swaying between liking him and thinking some of his “kind” acts a bit out of character but I grew fond of him as the story progressed, especially as he teamed up with Umara.

One of my favorite parts were the lions and what happened after Stedd got to his destination. Won’t elaborate more than that. I loved the fight scenes too! Always a new factor to throw in and keep things interesting. Umara definitely brought things to a whole new level of interesting with her wizardry. The events of the Sundering are coming together spectacularly and I’m sure that any long time Forgotten Realms fan is going to enjoy this story as much as I did. Even new fans can pick these books up and dive in without a problem.

Byers brought an excellent tale to the table, one that made me forget about anything but the sea and the not so romantic antics of pirates and their battle for domain and power. There was almost nothing for me to pick at so I say, pick this up! The ending was perfect for Anton and Umara, two not so pure characters and I was really happy for Stedd. Not a heavy tale, it has my praise for being captivating and reaver worthy.

Happy Reading
~Tally


ophelia and the marvelous boyTitle: Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy
Author: Karen Foxlee
Pages: 240 (Ebook)
Rating: 3/5

I received a copy from Netgalley for review. This book is coming out on January 28th, so you can pick it up quite soon too!

Unlikely heroine Ophelia Jane Worthington-Whittard doesn’t believe in anything that can’t be proven by science. She and her sister Alice are still grieving for their dead mother when their father takes a job in a strange museum in a city where it always snows. On her very first day in the museum Ophelia discovers a boy locked away in a long forgotten room. He is a prisoner of Her Majesty the Snow Queen. And he has been waiting for Ophelia’s help.

As Ophelia embarks on an incredible journey to rescue the boy everything that she believes will be tested. Along the way she learns more and more about the boy’s own remarkable journey to reach her and save the world.

A story within a story, this a modern day fairytale is about the power of friendship, courage and love, and never ever giving up.

Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy is a truly remarkable adventure that I for the most part enjoyed. I love museum settings and think that this is a story that both boys and girls can enjoy, especially as a read-out loud to a class story. In fact, I started out reading it out loud to a friend but ended up falling quiet and reading it to myself. Oops.

Ophelia was interesting, more so than the Marvelous Boy who I refuse to speak about for spoilerish reasons (also because I might end up yelling about a specific thing again. Which is a good thing, that means the author did good!). She meets him and refuses to believe in his fantastical stories about wizards and keys and the end of the world. I nearly wanted to smack him myself after he kept making Ophelia go after keys, it got a bit tedious. My favorite scene would have been Ophelia and the ghosts, that struck as the Snow Queen’s evilest of deeds. More so than the misery birds or the wolves, or that she wanted to kill a boy. The misery birds were pretty neat and scary, wish I could have seen more of them in the story.

It was a great read though I felt like the ending and the fight with the Snow Queen was rushed and slightly anticlimactic. The Snow Queen gave me the chills and I loved the flashbacks of Ophelia and her mother, but the other characters seemed to lack some character building. The ending came at a satisfying point even though I wanted it to continue for just a bit longer so I could get a few remaining questions answered! Overall though, I was happy to have picked this up and would definitely recommend it to any youngster or young of heart.

Stay warm!
~Tally


The CompanionsTitle: The Companions
Author: R.A. Salvatore
Pages: 384 (Ebook)
Rating: 4.5/5

I recieved an ARC ebook copy from Netgalley, thank you!

The Companions is the first book, of a five-book series that unfolds the changes occurring across the Forgotten Realms and it revolves around the hero, dark elf Drizzt Do’Urden and his companions. It takes the reader back a few years from where The Last Threshold left off to recount the adventures of some long lost companions. All leading up to reuniting twenty-one years later if they can outlast their new enemies and trials to go to the aid of Drizzt. Old readers will be quick to guess who these companions are but new readers will be brought in with welcoming hands as new adventures unfold with promising new roads on every horizon.

This book tore me apart on so many levels. I was a sobbing mess at the beginning, a mess at the end, and just torn watching these characters. Its so hard to write a nonspoilerish review, especially about a series and characters that span over 25 years of works. If you’ve ever wanted to pick up R.A. Salvatore’s books, don’t do it with this one. Perhaps Salvatore means to bring in new fans but my advice, start at the beginning.

These characters, got a new chance to be reborn, to start a new life without forgetting their previous identities and for one dwarf in particular, it’s hard, too hard, to have to restart all the successes and be someone less than he was. The dwarf sums it up nicely, “beardless.” A certain halfling gets the chance to, this time around not just be a sidekick but make a difference. I absolutely loved him, though he reminded me very much of another of Salvatore’s character from another series. And then there’s her. Her. Come back as Ruqiah. If she was a bad-ass character before, then she’s just unbelievable now. I would like to see her back with her bow and arrows though^.^

The ending was perfect with a surprise thrown in for good measure and I get teary-eyed every time I reread it. My feelings are still conflicted over this book. I look back at the past books and the pain Drizzt went to and wonder if it was worth it. Granted he wouldn’t know the blessing that was being prepared for him but still. I have conflicts with reincarnation(the only reason why I don’t five star this book). It such a simple way to get characters back in the game but then again, I’m more than excited to see the Companions of the Hall gathered together. For one last major battle? What roads does Drizzt still have yet to walk?

Brilliant book, I rather felt like it was a bridge to greater things but I still had fun following the adventures and painful trials of these three companions of Drizzt Do’Urden. If you’re a high fantasy fan, you don’t want to miss this book. Or rather, I still suggest going back to the earlier books but that is of course, up to you.

Happy, Happy Reading!

~Tally