Tag: Fantasy

Book & Audiobook Review: Of Sand and Storm by Amber Argyle

Book & Audiobook Review: Of Sand and Storm by Amber Argyle

By law, any child born in Idara is free, even if that child is born in a slave brothel. But as Cinder grows into a beauty that surpasses even that of her mother and grandmother, she realizes that freedom is only a word. Partial synopsis […]

Shares 0
Fairy Tale Friday #3: Fairer-Than-A-Fairy (Plus-Belle-que-fée) by Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force

Fairy Tale Friday #3: Fairer-Than-A-Fairy (Plus-Belle-que-fée) by Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force

Fairer-Than-A-Fairy (PLUS-BELLE-QUE-FÉE) Written by Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force Fairer-Than-A-Fairy (originally published in French under the name Plus-Belle-Que-Fee), was written in 1698 by French author Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force. La Force, a French novelist and poet, was best known for her tale Persinette, which […]

Shares 0
Book Review: Dragons of Kings by Ava Richardson

Book Review: Dragons of Kings by Ava Richardson

On the eve of battle, Bower will have to fulfill a mystical prophecy and become the leader he was born to be, or risk his future kingdom falling apart. Surrounded on all sides by deadly foes, he must face not only the evil king, but his deep doubts about himself.

Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.

dragons of kings

Dragons of Kings

Series: Upon Dragon's Breath #2

Author: Ava Richardson

Publication Date: December 30, 2016

Publisher: Relay Publishing Ltd.

Page Count: 214

Format: ebook

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Cover Artist: Joemel Requeza

My Rating: ★★★

This synopsis may contain spoilers!

Bower, being the rightful heir to the throne, is the bridge between the world of dragons and men. After a slim escape from King Enric, Bower has taken up residence with Saffron among her clutch of dragons. In the time he is there, it is the dragons’ duty to teach him about magic, and what it means to be a king to both humans and dragons. Not understanding much of magic herself, Saffron decides to take Bower to visit the old Hermit. Upon arriving, they find the Hermit mortally wounded, and discover that the king knows the two of them are on the island as they were his attackers. The Hermit instructs them to find the Three-Rivers clans before he succumbs to his injuries.

”Find what I’ve hidden for you, my king. Take back what is yours by right. Get to the clans. Stop Enric. Trust each other.”

Bower and Saffron meet with the dragons to discuss what they are to do about King Enric. Bower, being the rightful heir, must show his worth to the dragons before they are willing to back him up. In order to gain their trust, the dragons send him on a quest to make friends between the dragons and island people–which is not a simple task. There has been a long-spanning dispute between the two races.. The local shaman speaks of messengers from the king arriving on the island, looking for the two of them, then reveals that she plotted to lure them out so they could be captured. Before Bower is able to enlist the people in a peace treaty with the dragons, the islanders are forced to take refuge in Den Mountain with the dragons from a raid the king planned with the shaman.

Bower helps to lead the dragon swarm in a fight against the king’s boats. Defeating them, Bower instructs the villagers and dragons that they need to find a different place to live, now that the king knows where the dragons were residing. He and Saffron then leave the island astride Jaydra, to seek out the Three-Rivers clan of dragon riders. On the way, Saffron uses the opportunity to help Bower develop his riding skills, along with her abilities with magic.

The group finds the Three-Rivers clan, but they aren’t who they imagined. They do not live in harmony with their dragons, and treat them as wild animals. When their leader Ryland learned that Bower is the rightful king of Torvald, he challenged Bower to mount one of their black dragons to prove his dominance. Bower realizes that the dragons are nocturnal, and frees one, trying to make the wild creature realize he’s not trying to hurt it. The dragon, out of anger, knocks Ryland from his dragon and the two dragons escape. Out of fear, Saffron uses her magic to keep Bower safe from the feral dragon, and ends up injuring some and scaring the dragons off.

The town is raided by the Iron Guard. Saffron discovers that Ryland doesn’t have any other dragons as they are all feral and unrideable. Saffron, Bower, and Jaydra do what they can to hold the Iron Guard back, but when the king’s magic stops them and tries to call Saffron back to him. In desperate need of aid, Bower sends out a call to all dragons. The brood from Den Mountain, along with dragons from several other surrounding locations hear him, and come to help. As Saffron fights the king with magic, Bower focuses on guiding the dragon warriors.

Exhausted after the magic battle with the Iron Guard, Bower and Saffron are held and watched by the Three Rivers Clan. The red dragons that came to Bower’s aid confronted them, but were unable to share their thoughts with humans. Ysix and the rest of Jaydra’s brood arrive and show both the red dragons and the Three Rivers clan that dragons and humans have an ancient bond, and acknowledge Bower as the rightful king. Ysix is able to help repair relations between the humans and some of the black dragons. On the same side, the dragons choose their riders, and they learn how to work together through training.

One evening, Saffron is acting strange and turns in early. Bower, worried about her strange reactions, goes to check on her. He finds her in a nightmarish state, and is dragged into the depths of her dream, where Enric infiltrates her mind and tries to persuade Saffron again to join him. She is able to break from his grasps with the help of Jaydra, but now the king knows their location.

A massive battle ensues between the dragons and the king’s Iron Guard. King Enric tries to force Saffron to come to him. In her anger, she recklessly uses her magic and creates a massive storm. With the distraction of the storm, and the valiant sacrifice by Ryland, they are able to escape the king’s clutches.

Dragons of Kings (Upon Dragon's Breath, #2)Dragons of Kings by Ava Richardson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

1) Dragons of Wild: ★★★½

Initially, I was slow to get back into this series, and remembering all of the details. I let far too much time pass from when I read Dragons of Wild, which is a shame. What I found when I jumped back into this world, however, was how much I appreciated this series. It’s clean, it has straight-forward intentions, the characters are wholesome, and it is a refreshing deviation from the typical YA fantasy read.

World Building

Dragons of Kings is set in the surrounding lands of Torvald. While there is detail given of the land, it is not in depth, and somewhat difficult to follow where the characters actually are. More of the world building comes into play when the reader is introduced to the Three-Rivers Clan, and see some of their perspectives, especially towards dragons.

Pacing & Readability

The pacing is moderate but remains consistent throughout the entire book. While this book is easy to read, I had a difficult time staying engaged with it as not a lot happened. The distance between “point A” to “point B” could be summed up in just a few sentences.

Point-of-View & Characters

The point-of-view remains the same as Dragons of Wild, and shifts between Saffron and Bower. The reader is privy to moderately deeper ruminations of the characters this time around. I felt that I got a better picture of Bower’s character overall.

“I had been raised with books, not with battles.”

For the first time, Bower is challenged by the dragons to see if he is worthy enough to be the dragon king. He knows he is the true heir to the throne, but struggles immensely with the responsibility that comes with it.

Saffron’s character was rather flat in this sequel. While she has a few challenges thrown her way, her character didn’t react as much as I would have expected in the situations. If it wasn’t for Jaydra helping her along, I fear Saffron would be nearly unremarkable.

We are introduced to a few new characters (both dragons and humans) in this installment, but these too are barely explored. Ryland, the leader of the Three-Rivers clan is briefly introduced, then made into a petty criminal with his acts towards the black dragons. (view spoiler)

King Enric, the antagonist of the series, is probably the most consistent character of all. I felt that as the villain, he delivered what was expected of him.

Major Themes

⇒ Good vs. Evil:

The battle between good and evil is the central theme through this series. Saffron and Bower, the representatives of good, fight against King Enric, an evil sorcerer king who has tried (and mostly succeeded) in wiping everyone’s minds clean of dragons and history in general. As I stated in my review for Dragons of Wild, this series parallels Fahrenheit 451, in the idea that knowledge (books) are dangerous. This is exactly the world that King Enric is trying to enforce and control, which truly is a terrifying goal for an antagonist.

This theme is also applicable for Saffron as she battles with her Maddox magic.

“If it is magic for human and dragons to share a mind, is it magic that also breaks our ties? Or is it the lack of magic? And if there is a place where Jaydra and Saffron are one thing in our hearts and minds, is there also a place where Saffron and Enric are one?”

Unsure of its functioning, Saffron doesn’t know if the magic is good, or evil like that of King Enric’s. It causes a rift between her and Jaydra, and Jaydra must protect herself from being influenced by the king when Saffron uses her magic. There wasn’t a conclusion to this issue, and assume it will be made clear in the sequel, Dragons of Dark.

⇒ Coming of age:

This story was largely centered around Bower, and him coming to terms with the fact that he is the rightful heir to the throne. Not only that, he has the ability to unite the dragons and humans once again. Throughout the entire story, he is seeking his worth, understanding, ability, and influence. Being one that loved to hit the books, he hadn’t had any experience with leading others. It was a trait that he had to learn and develop for his own.

⇒ Unity/Coming Together:

Another underlying theme was bringing unity between the dragons and humans in order to fight King Enric. After a long time of having little-to-no ties, Bower must word in tandem with the dragons to gain their respect and trust, as well as be a good advocate for them to the humans.

Overall Feelings

Things that I liked:

⇒ The dragons and humans learning to work together.
⇒ The diversity of the dragons. This is more of a personal point, but I loved learning about all of the variations of dragons, and how different they are!
⇒ How clean of a read this is!

Things that I didn’t like:

⇒ The plot pacing was a bit slow. I found myself having to reread areas because I became distracted and didn’t pay enough attention.
⇒ I still had some difficulty really engaging myself in the characters’ stories. I felt that they and several other aspects of the plot needed more depth.

While I really wanted to like this series more, I feel like there’s an outstretched hand, halting my progression in immerse myself further. I’d like to get further into this world, but need more depth in the characters in order to do so. I’m hoping Dragons of Dark will fulfill my hopes for this series because I think it really has potential to be great!

Vulgarity: None.
Sexual content: None.
Violence: While there are several fight scenes, there is no gore.

View all my reviews

My Favorite Bookish Friendships

My Favorite Bookish Friendships

Have you ever read a book that had a friendship that gave you all of the feels? I can honestly say that I haven’t read many books that actually have made me feel much towards the characters. I’ve read a decent number of books, but perhaps […]

Shares 0
Barnes & Noble Birthday Book Haul

Barnes & Noble Birthday Book Haul

It’s been a long time since I’ve done a book haul post! It’s literally been months since I last did one, which means I’ve been successfully sticking to my book-buying ban! I must admit, I’m doing this ban a bit begrudgingly because they’re books. I want […]

Shares 0
eARC Review: Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman

eARC Review: Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman

Release day February 27, 2018!

Tess, stubbornly, is a troublemaker. You can't make a scene at your sister's wedding and break a relative's nose with one punch (no matter how pompous he is) and not suffer the consequences. As her family plans to send her to a nunnery, Tess yanks on her boots and sets out on a journey across the Southlands, alone and pretending to be a boy.

Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads. 

Book: Tess of the Road

Author: Rachel Hartman

Publication Date: February 27, 2018

Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers

Page Count: 544

Format: eARC

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Cover Artist:

My Rating: No Rating – DNF

Tess of the RoadTess of the Road by Rachel Hartman

I received a copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

DNFing at 30%

”If Tess pretended she was married hard enough, could she fool herself into having a baby?”

I can confidently say that I have given Rachel Hartman a second chance with reading this book, hoping for the best. I read Seraphina in 2017 and ended up DNFing it. Unfortunately, I’m finding myself in the same boat with Tess of the Road. While the writing is well-composed and encompassing, I just didn’t like the main character Tessie, or the way in which the plot was headed.

Tessie Dombegh is the main character. At a young age, her curiosity got her into rough waters with her mother. Holding onto her past mistakes, she becomes rather spiteful towards others, making her a very unlikeable character to follow.

”I don’t envy you, if that’s what you’re worried about,” said Tess, not lying exactly. It wasn’t envy so much as self-pity. Did that make her “all right” or not?

When her twin sister Jean is proposed to, Tess tries to hide her jealousy of her sister’s position. However, her true feelings bubbling beneath the surface pour out at her sister’s wedding, when out of her drunkenness, she starts a fight.

From this point on, I simply lacked interest in the plot. With the main character being so unlikeable, I fail to see a reason to move on.

Another point to mention is that there is a lot of focus on sex, in a very tactless way.

”Is it true what they say, that the saar are slow to warm up, but once they get going they burn hot as the sun?”

Sorry, but I don’t think this is a necessary addition to a YA novel. If anything, this book reads more like an adult fantasy novel due to its content. This is where the book crossed a line for me. Tess’ obsession with the topic was just off-putting.

Vulgarity: While there wasn’t a lot, (I counted six up until the point of stopping) the overall mannerisms of the characters were vulgar.
Sexual content: There isn’t anything explicit, but this topic is constantly being discussed between characters.
Violence: Minimal.

Since this is a DNF read, I will not be assigning a star-review.

View all my reviews

Nine While Nine Cover Reveal!

Nine While Nine Cover Reveal!

Nine While Nine Publisher: Parliament House Press For fans of This Savage Song! Find Out About Other Books by Stasia Morineax at http://stasiamorineaux.wixsite.com/stasiamorineaux Isabeau Finne’s perfect world utterly unravels when she meets Death’s right-hand man one fateful night, spiraling her life into a world of […]

Shares 0
Book Review: The Fire Queen by Emily R. King

Book Review: The Fire Queen by Emily R. King

Though the tyrant rajah she was forced to marry is dead, Kalinda’s troubles are far from over. A warlord has invaded the imperial city, and now she’s in exile. But she isn’t alone. Kalinda has the allegiance of Captain Deven Naik, her guard and beloved, […]

Shares 0
eARC Review: Keeper by Kim Chance

eARC Review: Keeper by Kim Chance

When a 200-year-old witch attacks her, sixteen-year-old bookworm Lainey Styles is determined to find a logical explanation. Even with the impossible staring her in the face, Lainey refuses to believe it—until she finds a photograph linking the witch to her dead mother.

Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Book: Keeper

Author: Kim Chance

Publication Date: January 30, 2018

Publisher: Flux Books/North Star Editions

Page Count: 408

Format: ebook

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal

Cover Artist: Jake Slavik

My Review: ★★★

KeeperKeeper by Kim Chance
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

All great wars are fought over power.

While I really wanted to love this book, I just couldn’t find it in me to rate it any higher than three stars. The first 20% sucked me in. Lainey is the typical, everyday girl that is completely unsuspecting. Her observant but sassy character was refreshing and captivating to begin with. Then, the weird and rather creepy encounter between her and the witch takes place, and the plot’s individuality and pacing goes downhill from there.

One of the biggest issues I had with this book was that Lainey persistently believed that she needed to handle these supernatural situations alone–when she lives with her uncle and his obviously “witchy” girlfriend. (view spoiler) If you live with someone who speaks about your energy regularly, and practices rituals religiously, I’d think that would be a great resource to confide in after an experience like Lainey had with encountering the dead woman. I get that some people might think you are crazy for saying these things, but that’s not the case here. It’s simply too obvious of a solution.

As Lainey continues to deny the fact that she’s seeing a ghost that is trying to communicate with her, the plot drags on for the first half of the book. Lainey meets a mysterious character named Ty, who is of the tall, dark, and handsome sorts. He instantly becomes a love-interest for Lainey, although she tries to deny that as well. Lucky for her, Ty knows more about this world she is encountering than she.

As Lainey uncovers the secret behind these odd encounters with the woman, she realizes she’s very unprepared to deal with the responsibility that has been set in her lap. Too many times these types of characters become overly-capable in an unrealistic time-frame. A crash course in self-defense turns people into super-heroes, which is what happened here. I would have liked to see more of a progression in Lainey’s abilities rather than the instantaneous progression that happened.

Despite its short-comings, this was an entertaining read. It wasn’t as in-depth, or original as I was hoping. However, its characters were likable, had some depth, and the main topic was unique. It simply needed more focus on its uniqueness in order to help it gain some distinguishability.

These numbers may not be 100% accurate, but I counted each word I came across.

Sexual Content: Minimal.
Violence: Moderate.

View all my reviews

“You can’t control what happens to you, only how you react to it.”

“Actions define character, not circumstances.”

“All great wars are fought over power.”

eARC Review: Shadowsong by S. Jae-Jones

eARC Review: Shadowsong by S. Jae-Jones

Released today, February 6, 2018! When troubling signs arise that the barrier between worlds is crumbling, Liesl must return to the Underground to unravel the mystery of life, death, and the Goblin King—who he was, who he is, and who he will be. Partial synopsis […]

Shares 0
Hidden Gems In My Favorite Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Hidden Gems In My Favorite Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

There’s no denying that YA Fantasy is a common genre read among book lovers. Many books in this genre have become powerhouses of attention. No wonder why it’s so difficult to get to all of these books because there are just so many! While there […]

Shares 0
Book Review: The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

Book Review: The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

Release day January 30, 2018!

Alice has long steered clear of her grandmother’s cultish fans. But now she has no choice but to ally with classmate Ellery Finch, a Hinterland superfan who may have his own reasons for wanting to help her. To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother's tales began―and where she might find out how her own story went so wrong.

Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Book: The Hazel Wood

Series: The Hazel Wood #1

Author: Melissa Albert

Publication Date: January 30, 2018

Publisher: Macmillan USA

Page Count: 368

Format: Paperback

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Horror, Fairy Tale, Mystery

Cover Artist: Anna Gorovoy

My Rating: No Rating – DNF

The Hazel WoodThe Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

I received an ARC of this book via Goodreads giveaway. Thank you!

DNFing at page 185.

Hold on to your hats, kitties, because this review is about to get strange. Stranger than this book? Probably not.

What I mean is, the reason why I DNF’d this book is because…I get creeped out too easily.

It’s not that this book is horrendously terrifying. It’s because this book is such a slow burn with plot revelation that it allows time for your mind to wander. I think this is my main problem. Key points aren’t revealed fast enough, so my brain thinks up numerous alternatives…which end up being way worse than the actual ending! This is why I can’t handle horror anything. My mind is overactive enough on a daily basis–I don’t need anything creepy to prompt that type of thinking at all.

This is a perfect case of, “it’s me, not you, book with a beautiful cover and fantastic plot.” Seriously though, if it wasn’t for my ineptness with reading scary stories, this would probably be one of my favorites for this year.

I know, I’m screaming inside too.

The writing is matter-of-fact, with creativity scoring off the charts! Melissa Albert’s writing style may not be for everyone, but I thoroughly enjoyed how she depicted her characters, and slowly introduced the secrets of the Hazel Wood, also commonly known as the Hinterland.

This tale is unlike anything I’ve picked up before, to the point of where the possibilities feel endless. However, I must listen to my conscious as well, because, I have to live with it. I don’t want to be jumpy for the next few weeks (or more) because I’m always thinking about how this book creeped me out.

To be honest, some people may find this to not be creepy at all. Good for you! I’m not saying it is the creepiest book in the world–I had a similar reaction (for different reasons) when I tried to read The Raven Boys. Despite the fact that it was such a thorough piece of literature, I couldn’t stick with it.

I’m really hoping I’ll be able to change my mind and complete this book at some point. Alas, for now, I must put it down and move on to something less stimulating.

NOTE: These were my accounts up until the point of where I abandoned the book. This is not observing the entire book. 

Vulgarity: There were 85 words counted up until about the halfway mark. My assumption is that there would be a lot more in the second half of the book.
Sexual content: Minimal, if any.
Violence: Moderate to prevalent. The fairy tales being told are often gruesome and without cause. They make for a twisted read.

View all my reviews

No-star rating is to be assigned to this read as it is a DNF.

Book Review: Betrothed by Wanda Wiltshire

Book Review: Betrothed by Wanda Wiltshire

When Amy starts having strange dreams, everything changes. Night after night, she becomes trapped in a shroud of black – a void of silence but for a male voice calling for a girl named ‘Marla’. Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads. Book: Betrothed Series: Betrothed #1 […]

Shares 0
Books I Disliked But Love To Discuss!

Books I Disliked But Love To Discuss!

Andddd we’re back with another Top 5 Wednesday! And this one may be filled with a little bit of… Regret? Remorse? Ridicule? I guess we’ll find out… Let’s be honest here, folks, we’re all here to have a little fun and discuss some books! (What’s […]

Shares 0
Book Review: A Brush with the Beast by Richard Sones

Book Review: A Brush with the Beast by Richard Sones

You will laugh, cry, and cling to the edge of your seat as you follow this thrilling, international adventure, and epic battle between the ultimate good set against the ultimate evil.

Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.

Book Title: A Brush with the Beast

Series: Untitled #1

Author: Richard Sones

Publisher: Richard Sones

Publication Date: June 20, 2017

Page Count: 292

Format: Paperback

Genre: Christian Fiction, Fantasy

Cover Artist:

My Rating: ★★★½

A Brush with the BeastA Brush with the Beast by Richard Sones
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

What an introduction to a new end-times series. I mean that in a good, yet horrified way (if that’s even possible to do.) This plot orchestrates a complex, and plausible timeline for Biblical end-times events and how they take place. For these characters, the book of Revelations is no myth, it’s reality.

It’s truly difficult to find a book along these lines as “likable.” I don’t think I’d ever say to someone that this is my favorite book, just because of the nature of its contents. It’s horrifying to think of these things happening. If you know anything about how Revelations dictates the second-coming of Jesus Christ, then they would know that the only good to come of it will be the fact that Jesus is returning for his followers. Everything else, this world, people, everything as we known it, will completely diminish. (It made me think how insignificant so many of the “must do’s” and “must haves” in life are.)

Despite its frightful story-line, this book also has a lot of hope to offer its characters and readers alike. For those who know and follow God, the terror that occurs with these events isn’t so influential and doesn’t sway them from following their beliefs.

“It is absolutely true that God promised to take care of use. But that doesn’t mean that all of his children are wealthy and comfortable all the time. He takes care of us beyond the way the world is able. He takes care of us in a way that nothing else in the world can. Through him we have hope when everything looks hopeless. Through him we have peace when our world is crumbling around us. He drives fear out of our hearts. He brings us to the top of the brightest mountain when we are in the bottom of the darkest valley. There are no bitter circumstances or fleshly pains able to take what we have from God. Jesus demonstrated firsthand that suffering and even death was worth enduring to bring to us life and peace.”

While this read is not an easy one, I found myself often appreciating the lengths in which it took to highlight the fact that Jesus Christ, and the unparalleled act of sacrifice he made for all of mankind, cannot be trumped.

The reader gets to experience viewpoints from several different influential characters with very different purposes. Nick Gooseberry, Sarah Johnson, and Fanak (the Fox) are the main three, with several other minor characters peppering the scenes. Nick, a successful IT businessman, allows a physical plight to drive him into taking extreme measures in order to no longer feel pain. His choices have major consequences and drive him down a dark, and unfathomable path. Sarah, an unsuspecting middle-aged woman, works to make ends meet, but also to fund a toxic addiction which winds her up in jail. However, she discovers that even in bad situations, good and growth can come from them. Fanak, a young Palestinian man, grew up knowing a life of turmoil. Driven by his hate, he coordinates several attacks on his enemies in order to bring them to their knees.

“Never trust an evil man.”

The first 20 pages or so took me forever to get into. I don’t know if it took me more time getting used to the writing style, or to the fact that Nick Gooseberry’s character was so unlikable from the get-go. I couldn’t place him in my head, or figure out what he “was playing at.” It was such an odd introduction to the story that I didn’t know what to think. Once I got past that point and met some of the other characters, I was able to delve into the story.

Reflecting on Nick’s character specifically, I believe he required (and still requires) the most work. (view spoiler) I found that he was rather inconsistent with his character traits, despite his candor, and transformed from one being to the next without much thought. Seeing how there is a sequel to come, I hope there will be some snippets from the past revealing more of his change than what was provided here.

Similar to Nick, I think Sarah could have used a little more delineation in her reactions to what was happening in her life. She sort of floated from one incident and interaction to the next, without much reaction. While we did get to witness more of her transformation, I felt that her humanity was left behind at times.

Fanak was probably the most consistent character of the three. Never deviating from his purpose, he always knew what his end-goal was.

“Sometimes we are called upon to make great sacrifices for a great cause. The greatest sacrifices are often made by the greatest people.”

Clash is a major theme visible throughout all aspects of this plot. Conflicts between morality, religions, beliefs, power, and prestige are all driving factors behind the major issue. This evident theme makes up for the incongruity of the story-telling itself. The way the story was told, and how it jumped from character to character resulted in gaps of time without much explanation of what happened between. It made the plot somewhat choppy, and at times, hard to follow. However, with the knowledge that certain forces, people, and purposes were working against one another, it helped to tie things together enough for me to retain an idea as to what all was going on that wasn’t being explained up front.

Something I appreciate about this book (which is undoubtedly unpleasant for most, if not all readers), is how well it reveals the evil of sin. I remember having the same reaction when watching the Noah movie that came out in 2014. Biblical accuracy set aside, that movie ensnared just how evil humankind was in that period to prompt God to wipe out the entire race except for Noah’s family. There were many times that I second guessed what I was reading in A Brush with the Beast, due to language, pagan practices, and just the overall “yuck factor” I felt at different times. Then I realized, this is probably the point. As Christians, it’s easy to want to look for the good in life, the good we do, and how good God is. Yet, we cannot (as sinners) recognize the good there is without recognizing just how disgusting sin is. It’s an abomination to God, yet, all believers and non-believers alike, are riddled with it. The author did a great job at capturing this crucial element that makes the end-times so tumultuous.

I gave the rating that I did not for this book’s likability, but for its believable construct. There are many factors within that make it a difficult read. Equally, there are many factors that make it an encouraging read. There were multiple times when I was caught completely off-guard with the way the plot turned and was not expecting. I didn’t want to go into too much detail to not give anything away! If you enjoy end-times reads, with little lead-in information, and lots of unexpected twists and turns, this may be one you’ll like to check out. Just make sure you are aware of the content before diving it! (Included at the beginning of this review.)

Vulgarity: Quite a bit. Mainly by one of the main characters, Nick.
Sexual content: Some, although nothing explicit. There is a discussion of a man wanting to marry his grandson, as well as a pagan practice that ends up with sexual exploitation.
Violence: Quite a bit, including infant sacrifice and other pagan rituals.

View all my reviews

“I can’t change what’s happening to me, so I might as well be happy.”

“Those of us who belong to Jesus are never caught in any circumstance.”

“God uses the difficulties and conflicts that come our way to transform us. We gain a deeper understanding of people who are in pain by experiencing pain for ourselves.”

“The Lord is not opposed to our having troubles. He uses troubles to strengthen our character and cultivate our patience and compassion. Without troubles we would be shallow and insensitive.”


Get the latest posts delivered to your mailbox:

%d bloggers like this: