Tagged: Part of a Series

The Jinx – Promotion & Excerpt

Thrice Read Books hosts a blog tour stop for THE JINX by Ernest Lancaster, with chapter excerpt
Thrice Read Books is a stop on the blog tour for Ernest Lancaster's debut novel, The Jinx.

About the Book:

The Jinx     By Ernest Lancaster

Series: Memphis M.O. Book 1

Fiery Seas Publishing     July 24, 2018

Suspense / Action

Disaster strikes and innocents die as police sniper Rick Munro is plagued by a first-call jinx. As his career takes off, he must overcome his rookie mistakes, and keep his team members safe.

When Munro returns to TACT as a newly promoted lieutenant, the jinx torments him still. He must contend with team members’ rival agendas around every turn. Munro finds himself in a battle he can’t escape as corruption and death unfold around him.

Who can he trust? Will Munro break the streak or will it destroy everything he believes in?

About the Author:

Ernest Lancaster retired from the Memphis Police Department as a captain after serving as a cop for thirty-three years.

In the early seventies Lancaster spent two years walking a night beat in downtown Memphis, when The Peabody and Beale Street lay boarded up and crumbling and the center city became a dystopian ghost town after dark. He patrolled in ward cars, trooped for three days through a sea of pilgrims to Elvis’s funeral, edited the Memphis Police Association’s newspaper and acted as the association’s vice-president. For twenty-six years he held positions on the TACT Squad.

Lancaster now resides with his wife and Yorkie in the Smoky Mountains, where they love to hike and camp.

Social Media:

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Buy the Book:

This book is available in paperback and Kindle versions at these outlets:

Fiery Seas Pub Bookstore   Amazon   Barnes & Noble    Kobo

Excerpt, Chapter Eleven (reprinted with permission of the author & publisher)

Vickie delivered a plate and silverware, wrapped in a napkin, to the booth. She set a cheeseburger with a generous serving of thick, golden fries, and a pickle spear in front of him.

“More coffee?”

Munro edged his cup over. “Sure.” He turned to Loretta. “Want a burger? The kitchen is about to close.”

“You trying to make me fat?”

“We have a salad left,” Vickie said.

“No, thanks. Coffee’s plenty.”

Munro reached for his wallet. “How much do I owe?”

Vickie jutted out her palm. “It’s on the house. We’re glad to see you pass through at night.”

“How much are they usually?” he asked.

“Four dollars.”

Munro counted out bills from his wallet. “Here, take three. I’ll pay half price with a dollar tip.”

“Suit yourself.” She took the money.

Loretta’s gaze followed Vickie as she made her way back to the counter. “You know she just put your money in her pocket. Now she’s writing in her ledger, ‘one free burger to the police.’”

“Good for her,” he said. “I bet she works hard for her money.”

“Had to pay, huh? You have a guilty conscience?”

Munro opened the bun and sprinkled the meat with pepper. “Who doesn’t?”

“Good question.” She watched him with wary eyes as he dotted his fries with spots of ketchup. “So, you’re only half corrupt?”

He looked up. “Half price doesn’t hurt a business. I’m not a Boy Scout, but it helps keep me from straying over the double-yellow line head-on into stuffing my pockets or my belly at the public’s expense.”

“Are most cops corrupt?”

He shook his head. “No. Only a few are rotten to their core. And their stench tends to float to the surface. But on the streets in the real world, good and bad wear more faces than a diamond.” He took a hungry bite out of his half-price burger. “And beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.”

She touched her finger to her cheek and traced the scar down her face to where it crevassed her lip. “How can you be a cop if you can’t tell the difference between right and wrong?”

“Easy,” he said. “The almighty law is written down in black and white for any moron to read. And I do know the difference. It’s just that I’ve been around the block enough to know if you ride tall on a white horse through the mud all the time, the only thing you do is turn the horse black.”

“What about justice?”

“Justice? Whose? Movie heroes chase justice.” He stared out onto Madison Avenue. “Real cops, spilling their souls in the streets, are too busy trying to survive to worry about justice. That and clawing to hold onto a bit of their sanity—on a good day.”

She cocked a brow. “Aren’t you supposed to help people?”

“Don’t you see?” he asked. “I help people every day, every chance I get. That’s what I get paid for. And there’s never a shortage of people down and out on their luck needing it. But too many want help screwing someone in the ground to satisfy a grudge or escaping the consequences of their own foolishness.”

He took a slug of coffee like whiskey, and recoiled at its heat. “But if you keep your head down and your antennae up, every once in a while you can climb out of the muck and save some poor schmo who’s buried in disaster. Or make a difference in a kid’s life. Maybe even hammer a predator who deserves it. Those are the things that make it all worthwhile. But most of it is just madness you ride out.”

“Man.” She stared as if he were some offbeat poet ranting in the street. “Your eggs are scrambled.”

Jenn sat down and interviewed Mr. Lancaster about his debut novel, The Jinx, and published the transcript in our newsletter, Between the Lines. You can read the article here.

Reaper’s Return – Review

About the Book

Reaper’s Return, Ren Cummins (Chronicles of

Aesirium, book 1)

Young Adult Fantasy/Steampunk 302 pages

Self-published through CreateSpace March 10, 2011

What if Death wore a pretty black dress?

Everyone in Oldtown had heard talk of the Reapers. Even though nobody had seen one in years, everyone whispered the tales: flying from rooftop to rooftop, stealing the souls of the unwary, letting their undead beasts hunt through the streets for any member of the community too reckless or fearless to heed the nightly curfew … mysterious and terrifying, most feared to even mention them by name, lest they appear and gather your spirit away.

For 11-year-old Romany, her greatest fears were less about the mythological Reapers and more about surviving a miserable life inside of Oldtown’s solitary orphanage. Her stark white hair made her an obvious target for the bullies, and the cruel nickname of “Ratgirl” had followed her for years. But if Rom thought her troubles were behind her, being struck dead by a bolt of lightning would only open the door to an entire life of new ones.

First on the list? Finding out that she herself…is a Reaper.

Reaper’s Return is book one of the Chronicles of Aesirium, a YA Steampunk fantasy adventure series.

About the Author

Sam, Ren Cummins, & YA Author Kiri Callaghan at Westport's Pirate Daze, 2018

(Sam, Ren Cummins, and Kiri Callaghan at this year’s Pirate Daze in Westport, WA. Ren was kind enough to gift a signed copy of this book to Sam when we met him.)

Ren Cummins found his talent with storytelling in high school and has been writing ever since; either music or fiction. With a focus on creating kick-ass female characters in superhero stories for his child, Ren launched into the world of fantasy and sci-fi, where his love of philosophy and the bleeding edge of science returned him to tall tales that seemed fantastic but with an air of familiarity. 

He has authored over eight fantasy novels, beginning with The Chronicles of Aesirium and continuing on with the Tales of the Dead Man.

Ren continues his writing journey in Seattle, where he resides with his wife, their child and their two dogs.

More of this traveler’s journey can be found at www.renwritings.com

Sam’s Review

Introducing, a fun, and amazing book by the name of Reaper’s Return, filled with magic, and some themes of steampunk, which I love. Plus, it had talking animals! Alright!

Rom has a gift for handling animals. And, she’s dead. Kind of. She dies once, and then revives it all over, with the knowledge of what was going to happen. Then she learns that she is the Reaper, a entity that helps creatures move on to death.

But she is being hunted for her ability. It’s a really good thing that Rom has good friends.

I loved this book from beginning to cliffhanger end. That’s right, folks, it had a cliffhanger, sort of. But I loved this book. Rom, Kari, Cousins (gotta read it to find out how that name came to be.), and Mully are an amazing team, and work great together.

In this edition of Sam's Teen Reads Corner, Sam reviews YA Fantasy REAPER'S RETURN by Ren Cummins.

Buy the Book

 This book is available in Kindle (Kindle Unlimited, as well), paperback and audiobook formats from Amazon here. [affiliate link]

The Redeemed – Review

About the Book

The Redeemed by Matthew S Cox (RoadHouse Chronicles)

Adult Sci-Fi Post-Apocalyptic 

Curiosity Quills Press (December 18, 2017)

The worst part about chasing one’s dream is catching it.

Six months ago, Kevin opened a Roadhouse of his own. No longer the idiot braving the dangerous post-nuclear highways of 2073, he thought he’d finally grow old and happy selling bullets, beds, and booze to those still foolish enough to get behind the wheel.

Then, he’d met her.

The white-haired outcast from the xenophobic Enclave crashed into his life, becoming the conscience he never wanted and everything he desired. She couldn’t save the world from the Virus, but she could save Kevin’s dream.

A biker gang calling themselves the Redeemed starts shooting up Roadhouses in flagrant disregard of the Code, shattering the serenity of his humble waystation. When the long-vaunted retribution of Amarillo’s army fails to materialize, Kevin feels more like a sitting duck than he ever did on the road―but it’s not his ‘house he fears losing.

Determined to protect her, he takes it upon himself to enforce the unwritten law of the Roadhouse.

About the Author

Originally from South Amboy NJ, Matthew has been creating science fiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Since 1996, he has developed the “Divergent Fates” world, in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, The Awakened Series, The Harmony Paradox, and the Daughter of Mars series take place.

Matthew is an avid gamer, a recovered WoW addict, Gamemaster for two custom systems, and a fan of anime, British humour, and intellectual science fiction that questions the nature of reality, life, and what happens after it.

He is also fond of cats.

Jenn’s Review

After being pulled away from the series for a bit, I finally finished Matthew S. Cox’s The Redeemed. The story of Kevin and Tris continues and the mysteries surrounding the events after the end of the world deepen.

Kevin finally has his Roadhouse, his life long goal achieved. Except, his dream is starting to turn into a nightmare. The long-respected Code is being ignored, Roadhouse owners are dying, the Virus is spreading in strange circumstances, and Amarillo isn’t all it once seemed.

Tris and Kevin are pulled in opposite directions, as she tries to unravel the growing mysteries surrounding Amarillo and rescue the survivors of an impossible Virus outbreak.

Kevin has to leave his ‘house in the hands of virtual strangers to chase down then who murdered his long-time friend and mentor, only to discover that things are not what they seemed; and he must reconcile what is with the fading satisfaction of finally having a safe, stable life.

MAD MAX meets DIVERGENT in this post-apocalyptic, science fiction thriller with a thread of romance. Book 3 is due out in a few months; so we won’t have to wait long to resolve the bit of cliffhanger readers are left with. I’d toss this book in the New Adult category, along with One More Run, for some sexual content (book two has less than book one). The language is mild, and there is moderate violence.

THE REDEEMED by Matthew S. Cox, book 2 in the Roadhouse Chronicles - Review by Jenn on the Thrice Read Books blog

Buy the Book

 This book is available from Amazon in Kindle edition here. [affiliate link]

Other Books in this Series:

One More Run (Book 1)

Inclement Gods – Review

About the book:

When you live in a world pullulating with gods, can you truly be an atheist? Well, yes…if you know a way to get rid of them. Mysantheos, a fanatic atheist at the head of a powerful lobby/terrorist organization, has created a weapon able to kill gods and his kamikaze army is ready to attack.

As the divine bodies pile up, resentment builds at Gods Incorporated and violent factions start pushing for the extermination of the human race, and the CEO/Queen Louhi is running out of ideas to calm them down. Hopefully, her black ops teams are doing better. But will the Nerds and Richard (a down-on-his-luck private eye), saddled as they are with a group of angry gods, manage to find Mysantheos before all hell breaks loose?

About the author:

Gabriele Russo

Gabriele Russo was born in Quebec City amidst a family of book lovers – her father had dreamed of being a writer and both of her brothers are published authors. 

Since she earned her Bachelor’s in History, it was no surprise (except to her) that she ended up working in restaurants, eventually owning two, which almost drove her mad. She sold them and was nursed back to pseudo-sanity by Douglas Adams and Terry Pratchett. 

That’s when she answered the family calling and decided to write. Armed with her ideas for the Gods Inc. series she went back to University and got her Master’s in Creative Writing.

She now lives with her husband in Virginia, where she divides her time between painting, teaching French and Creative Writing, playing tennis and, of course, writing more books.

Sam’s Review:

Just to let you guys know ahead of time, this book and it’s predecessor aren’t exactly kid appropriate. Just to let all the people looking for a new book for their little sibling, not appropriate. Sorry guys.

Humans are turning away from the gods and turning to science to explain their world. Thor and the weather gods are trying to get the other gods to kill all humans. God, AKA, the Big G (yes, God’s in this too), is most definitely against this. Just thought I should point this out now.

Not only are humans being, well, humans (no offense), gods are dying. Yes, dying. I know, I know, god’s can’t die. That’s the problem here! And the gods know it! And thus the search begins for how gods can die, and the dumb mortal who can kill them.

Okay, that’s the book in a nutshell, with a sort-of-cliffhanger. Okay, I told you guys that that this series isn’t for young kids? I mean, if letting them read books with cursing and stuff like that works for you, more power to you. I just wouldn’t recommend it.

Okay, this book gets three of five stars because I am just, not feeling this series because, as I have said before, the concept didn’t call out to me. It didn’t really hold my interest, which, if you’re like me and can’t really read a book that doesn’t hold your interest, makes it hard to read. Really, the only thing I look forward to in this series is Louhi, but even then it’s still hard to read when my mind isn’t so into the story that I jump when my timer goes off on my screen.

Sorry to insult any readers of this series. I like stories of gods, but this just doesn’t do it for me. 

Buy the book:

This book is available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback editions here. [affiliate link]

Other books in the series: 

Incompetent Gods

Prince of Wolves – Review

About the Book:

Jaque Pierce was just an ordinary 17 year old girl getting ready to start her senior year in highschool in Coldspring, TX. When a mysterious foreign exchange student from Romania moves in across the street, Jacque and her two best friends Sally and Jen don’t realize the last two weeks of their summer were going to get a lot more interesting. From the moment Jacque sets eyes on Fane she feels and instant connection, a pull like a moth to a flame. Little does she know that the flame she is drawn too is actually a Canis Lupus, werewolf, and she just happens to be his mate, the other half of his soul. The problem is Fane is not the only wolf in Coldspring, TX. Just as Fane and Jacque are getting to know each other, another wolf steps out to try and claim Jacque as his mate. Fane will now have to fight for the right to complete the mating bond, something that is his right by birth but is being denied him by a crazed Alpha. Will the love Fane has for Jacque be enough to give him the strength to defeat his enemy, will Jacque accept that she is Fane’s mate and complete the bond between them?

About the Author:

Quinn is an award winning author who lives in beautiful Western Arkansas with her husband, two sons, Nora the Doberman, and Chewy the Cat who thinks he’s a dog. She is the author of 17 novels, and 2 novellas, including the USA Today bestseller, Fate and Fury. Quinn is beyond thankful that she has been blessed to be able to write full time and hopes the readers know how much all of their support means to her. Some of her hobbies include reading, exercising, crochet, and spending time with family and friends. She gives all credit of her success to God because he gave her the creative spirit and vivid imagination it takes to write.

Sam’s Review: 

I will be reviewing one of the best werewolf stories that I have ever read. The book is called Prince of Wolves by Quinn Loftis.

There are so many reasons as to why I adore this book. I relate easily to Jacquelyn and her three friends, probably because that’d be me and some of my friends. Another thing, if there’s cursing, symbols are used to take the words’ place. Go Quinn! Oh! And I can’t forget that I haven’t had a good laugh that came from a book in a long time. The “royal butt” scene did it in for me.

Werewolves can shift into a wolf at any time that they want, Jacque has red hair and green eyes, which, by the way, don’t think that I’m stereotypical here, I think go great together. I do wish that Jacque is able to shift, since she’s half werewolf. I mean, just having the ability to communicate through thought-speak with her mate, Fane, has to suck.

As for the plot, well, I’m not revealing anymore spoilers. Nope. Not this girl. Okay! Moving on from the little self motivation thingy that I just did there. If you have read, written, or are currently writing, a book a book that is YA horror, fantasy, historical fiction, or science fiction that you think that I’d be interested in, please, suggest it to me! Seriously. I’m kind of running out of books to read here guys. Don’t send too many in!  

Buy the book:

This book is available from Amazon in Kindle, paperback, audiobook and MP3 CD formats here. [affiliate link]

Beyond Circumstances – Cover Reveal

You know how much we love surprises. Once again, Thrice Read Books is part of a Fiery Seas Publishing cover reveal. This time, it’s for an upcoming romance novel called Beyond Circumstances by Gloria Joynt-Lang.

About the book:

Beyond Circumstances by Gloria Joynt-Lang

Series: Out of the Darkness

Contemporary Romance    Fiery Seas Everlasting

June 12, 2018

Dr. Lexie Draden didn’t want to leave her successful career as a surgeon in Chicago, but she didn’t have a choice. Her family needed to heal, and as long as she was around, it wasn’t going to happen. While adapting to her new community, she meets Zak Tifour, a man as intriguing as he is handsome.

Most of the small-town residents view Zak as a man who likes his privacy, but to a select few, something doesn’t seem right. Long-time resident Cicily McQuay believes she has the key to the man’s odd behavior – a link to terrorism. After all, he just isn’t the type of man who belongs in her community. But to belong, you need to be welcomed; something Cicily has never extended to Zak.

Zak knows plenty of terrorists and has even lived amongst them, but not like Cicily suspects. Escaping from a lifetime of bloodshed and regrets, he attempts to distant himself from the quirky townsfolk; people unable to comprehend boundaries. It appears to be working until he encounters the town’s new attractive doctor. Even though his secrets run deep, she ends up trusting him with her heart. But trust is fragile, and when Zak gets drawn back to his old life, Lexie must decide whether he’s a dangerous man or a broken hero.

About the Author:

Gloria Joynt-Lang

Gloria Joynt-Lang was born in Ars-Laquenexy, France and spent her childhood experiencing the vast landscapes of Canada. A graduate of the University of Alberta with a degree in Criminology, she devoted her career to working in the criminal justice system. She now splits her time living in rural Alberta, Canada as well as Southern California with her husband and their two dogs, a Maltese named YaHoo and Yorkie named Smookie Bijoux. Why the Yorkie has a stripper name shall remain a tight guarded secret. A lifelong nerd, she is most comfortable with a book or laptop close by except when she transforms to cool biker chick, hopping on her motorcycle for a speed limit abiding ride to the nearest bookstore.

Social Media

Website      Facebook     Twitter

Cue Drumroll… here’s the cover you’ve been waiting for!

Cover reveal Beyond Circumstances

Bridge of the Gods – A Generation Chronicles Book – Review

About the book:

Luthor McAlester is a teenage boy living in San Diego, California. His father died when he was a child. Leaving him to become man of the house, living with his mother and younger sister. On his 18th birthday he discovers a power that has been held dormant until now. He is unsure what to do with it in the absence of this father’s guidance. His best friend Gwen, who claims to be oblivious, knows more than she is telling. Can Luther figure out how to use his power and help the Gods like they ask with just the help of his best friend? Or will the lack of guidance from his father prove to be more than young Luthor can handle?

About the Author:

Now a little bit about her. RoseAnn Labriola, penning as C.J. Rose.

I was born and raised here in Illinois, not far from Chicago. I am a hairstylist, with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management. I have always loved writing, whether it was poems, song lyrics or stories. I decided it was time to sit down and put my thoughts to paper of a story concept I have played with for long time. In the process, it developed into the full length version that I am proud to call my first published book, Bridge of the Gods – A Generation Son Chronicle. Now I have 3 novels in the series as well as a companion cookbook.

Sam’s Review:

One of the best things about this book is that it is written like it is being told, although the author kind of wrote something that he/she (I don’t know, which really frustrates me.) had already written a paragraph before, in the middle of the sentence. But that’s is okay!

The story was good, and Apollo is not the brightest of the gods, for a sun god. I like that.

Buy the book:

This book is available in Kindle and paperback edition from Amazon here. [Affiliate link]

Author Interview:

We recently sat down with CJ and talked a bit about this book, the series, and writing, and will be publishing our review in an upcoming edition of Between the Pages. You can sign up for our newsletter below, so you don’t miss a beat!

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Distant Memories – New Release Book Review!

About the book:

About to turn sixteen, Jade was looking forward to getting her first car and a little more freedom. Life, however, had a different path in mind. A thirst for blood and newfound fangs exposed a secret world to her… a world hidden from humanity. To leave behind everything she knew and enter The Shadow Realm, she must embark on a fateful journey to uncover the truth about the past, and understand her strange dreams. Daring efforts to unravel her destiny will reveal new powers, new friends, and very real enemies.

About the Author:

JL Keathley YA Author

J.L.Keathley is a self-published author who focuses on YA Fantasy. She lives in Arkansas with her husband and two daughters. She loves animals and has a variety of pets. She has always loved to read and decided to write what she wants to read about. She likes to travel with her family and find adventures.Contact JL:FacebookTwitterInstagramGoodreadsBlogAuthor Spotlight (Authors get featured on her blog weekly)

Jenn’s Review:

Debut novels are always fun to read – it’s a gamble on the part of a book reviewer. Some are downright terrible (I don’t finish these, let alone review them). Others are amazing – well written, beautifully edited, brilliantly plotted and put-together.

J.L. Keathley’s debut novel, Distant Memories, falls somewhere in between the extremes. This book challenged my inner editor – and while the first half of the book was a challenge, the author has a method to her seeming madness.

Distant Memories is told from the point of view of a 16 year old girl. In style, if not in form, this book reads much like my high school journals. Conventional style and comma usage is out the window.

It took me half of the book to realize that this was intentional, and not faulty editing (my interview with J.L. confirmed my suspicions). Once I got my noisy inner editor to go sit in a corner and hush (because the author had a reason for how she wrote this book), this is an awesome plot line. And the best news? There’s more coming.

The final tally: 

This isn’t an easy book to read from a style perspective. If you are someone who must have their novel in the standard, conventional style (each speaker in a conversation gets a new paragraph, commas in the right places) – this isn’t the book for you. If, however, you can approach a novel with an open mind, and enjoy a well-told story, this is an awesome debut for Ms. Keathley.

Update: This blog post went live before I got word that JL will be doing some editing and re-releasing this book. If you would prefer to get the updated version, hop into her Facebook group, linked above, and follow her to find out when it’s been released.

Sam’s Review:

Okay, so Distant Memories is a captivating story about a vampire-witch hybrid who’s trying to find her mom, basically. That’s it. That’s all the information you’re getting.

One of the things that I liked about this book was that it was captivating. I was drawn into the story from the first page. A couple of the thing that I didn’t like was how we didn’t see much of Legs, the main character’s tarantula, and the unfair cliffhanger at the end. Seriously, you think that there’s more to the book! Grr!

But I love it! Don’t get me wrong, I really, really love the book. It called out to me, in a way. Y’know, that moment when you pick up a book that you’ve never read before and it just calls you to you before you even look at it. Yeah. that kind of calling;

Buy the book: 

 This book is available in Kindle format from Amazon here. [affiliate link]

Bonus:

We sat down and talked to JL about her new release and published the interview in our newsletter. Sign up below to get new author interviews delivered to your email inbox every other week.

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The Princess of Tyrone – Review

About the Book:

Apolline is happy hunting magical creatures on her pirate infested outer-perimeter planet. She is a fantastic shot, and doesn’t flinch at the blood and guts of her kills. Never once did she consider she could be the missing Princess of Tyrone. All her life, she has heard the story of the Princess, cursed to sleep for eternity, unless her betrothed, the Prince of Oran, gave her true love’s kiss.

Although Apolline knows she is betrothed, she thinks her fairy guardians arranged it out of ignorance of human ways. The thought she could be a princess is inconceivable. Then Allard appears. Handsome, charming-but he’s not hers to have. He’s betrothed, too. Her guardians warn her against her new found friendship, but she and Allard meet in secret anyway. Despite her rough exterior, he sees beyond her gun-slinging bravado, and their love blossoms. But the deadline for the sleeping curse is approaching. If Apolline falls in love with the wrong person, she could end up sleeping forever. A quirky, adventurous retelling of Sleeping Beauty, with a less than princess-ly princess!

About the Author:

Born and raised in Australia, Katie’s early years of day dreaming in the “bush”, and having her father tell her wild bedtime stories, inspired her passion for writing.

After graduating High School, she became a foreign exchange student where she met a young man who several years later she married. Now she lives in Arizona with her husband, daughter and their dog.

She has a diploma in travel and tourism which helps inspire her writing.
When her debut novel, Kiya: Hope of the Pharaoh, climbed into bestselling status, she believed she was onto something, and now has a slew of novels now available, and is published through Curiosity Quills Press, Soul Mate Publishing, and REUTS Publishing.

Katie loves to out sing her friends and family, play sports, and be a good wife and mother. She now works as an Acquisitions Editor to help support her family. She loves to write, and takes the few spare moments in her day to work on her novels.

Jenn’s Review:

Young Adult, Science Fiction and Fairy Tales. What could possibly go wrong? The potential for this to be a dull, rehashed fairy tale story is huge here.

Katie Hamstead’s Princess of Tyrone is the first in a series of YA science fiction novels that are based on the old fairy tales most of us have grown up with. A little twisted, but certainly recognizable.

And book 1 was a fabulous read! The story is well told, the heroine is spunky and snarky (my favorite kind!), and the parallels to the old Grimm tales are hard to miss.

Then, we have the star-crossed lovers. Well, they think they are ill-fated, but a fairy godmother is looking out for Apolline and Allard. Even the antagonist, Bryanna has a voice in the story, and for my part, I’d say she’s pitiable, because even when it’s pointed out to her that her situation is the consequence of her own decisions, she insists on blaming others for her plight. Reminds me of a number of people in my own life.

Ms. Hamstead has woven a beautiful world with fun characters and a twisty plot that kept me cheering for the protagonists, even when they insisted on remaining oblivious to the obvious.

This is easily a YA novel that can be read by middle graders. They might find the kissy moments near the end.. well.. mushy. The language and content, however, are clean. Easily a four-star read.

Sam’s Review: 

So, I loved how it told the tale of Sleeping Beauty in another way, whereas the princess (Apolline is the name she grew up with, and that’s the name I’m calling her) is a bright, courageous, and spunky huntress who has fallen for a guy whom she doesn’t know is her betrothed.

Of course two of the three fairies that are raising her hate the idea, yada, yada, yada. But that’s not the point here! I’m getting off track, which I have a tendency to do. Anyways, I, well, can’t find anything about the book that I didn’t like. That’s a new one for me.

Buy the Book:

This book is available from Amazon in paperback and Kindle format here. [affiliate link]

Other books in this series:

Myths of Mish (Hansel and Gretel)

The Dwarves of Calcus (Snow White)

Myths of Mish – Book Review

About the book:

Hansel and Gretel Herrscher survived the witch in the woods, but the experience has made Hansel paranoid for the past ten years. He sees dark magic at every turn. When Gretel has a marriage arranged to a much older man, and Hansel discovers he’s about to be sent halfway across the galaxy, he knows something sinister is afoot.

Wilhelmine Nordon has plenty of experience with Hansel’s quirkier side. So when she catches him and Gretel running away in the middle of the night, she follows to keep them from getting killed. The siblings have never left the capital of Mish on their own, so they need a babysitter. Except when she’s discovered, Hansel gives her his usual cold shoulder, and Gretel secretly begs her to take them back.

The problem is, Hansel’s paranoia turns out to be well founded, and they’re all being hunted.

About the Author:

Born and raised in Australia, Katie’s early years of day dreaming in the “bush,” and having her father tell her wild bedtime stories, inspired her passion for writing. After graduating High School, she became a foreign exchange student where she met a young man who several years later she married. Now she lives in Arizona with her husband, daughter, and their dog. She has a diploma in travel and tourism which helps inspire her writing. She is currently at school studying English and Creative Writing. Katie loves to out sing her friends and family, play sports and be a good wife and mother. She loves to write, and takes the few spare moments in her day to work on her novels.

Jenn’s Review:

Myths wasn’t as good as Princess of Tyrone. 

Yeah, I know I don’t start reviews out like that, but it’s the honest truth. Not that Myths was a bad book; but the hero, Hansel, is a little over the top with the paranoia and his abusive treatment of Minna through almost 3/4 of the story.

And Minna falls in love with him anyway (before he stops acting like an a-hole).

The plot itself is fast paced, and while I could see the plot twists coming, I didn’t accurately predict where they were headed until each was upon me. Gretel tries desperately to play matchmaker between Hansel and Minna (again, why? He’s an absolute jerk to Minna – why would you try to hook your best friend up with someone who treats her like trash?).

Perhaps my issue with the relationship between hero and heroine in this story is my age. This is, of course, a YA sci fi romance, and here I am at 41, a survivor of abuse, trying to wrap my head around a young woman falling in love with an abusive male. Yes, Hansel mostly outgrows his perpetual jerkdom by the end of the book. The evil antagonist is vanguished, everyone gets married and has a happy-ever-after (Gretel meets someone on their adventure… if I tell you more, I’d have to put spoiler alerts all over this post!).

Sam’s reading this book, as well, and I should be adding her review in the near future. My final verdict, though? Mixed review, 3 stars. Great plot and character development; had a hard time accepting the love-the-abuser thing.

Sam’s Review:

Katie Hamstead is back with Myths of Mish, the prequel to Princess of Tyrone. While Princess of Tyrone told the story of Sleeping Beauty, Myths of Mish explained what happened to Hansel and Gretel after they defeated the witch, only with a interstellar twist. This book, along with the other books in the series, is for young adult audiences.

Even though it’s a prequel, the story blends right in to Princess of Tyrone.  I can almost see it happening while Apolline and the rest of the gang from the first book are doing their thing, while at the same time, I know that this is a prequel.

I loved how the characters’ personalities were well defined, and the places were well made. Filled with humor and tension where and when they were needed, I felt like I was part of the action.

Buy the Books:

This book is available in Kindle and paperback editions from Amazon here. [affiliate link]

Other Books in the series:

Princess of Tyrone

Dwarves of Calcus