Review: The Mayan Red Queen

The Mayan Red Queen: Tz'aakb'u Ahau of Palenque (The Mists of Palenque Book 3)The Mayan Red Queen: Tz’aakb’u Ahau of Palenque by Leonide Martin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lovers of all things Maya will enjoy the Mayan Red Queen. Leonide Martin has written a beautifully detailed story that showcases the depths of her knowledge on the subject, bringing to life a time, place, and people that text books only present two dimensionally. I had no trouble picturing the world and the characters as they fought, cried, and loved their way through it. One normally thinks of Medieval Europe, Biblical settings, or perhaps dynastic China when they consider court intrigues and drama, but the Mayan Red Queen proves that the New World could be just as fraught with royal peril. Such is the case when young Lalak is chosen to be the bride of the new ruler of Lankam Ha by his severe and controlling mother. Though Lalak is royalty, she comes from a smaller polity and is untested in big-city politics. Plus, she has been chosen for her lineage, and not her looks. She must rely on her intelligence, wit, and big heart to survive all challenges, external and internal. Will her surprising solution to many of her new home’s problems win the heart of the people, and the indifferent husband she has come to love?

The Mayan Red Queen did start out a bit slow, with very dense text, before I became vested in the characters, and one of the aspects most know and are fascinated by in Mayan culture, human sacrifice, was never really explored. Also, I felt opportunities for further excitement and drama was passed over when major wars or battles were only touched on. All that aside, the legacy of characters and stories in which this book belongs in the series coupled with the authenticity of the world made it an interesting read.

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Review: Most Difficult of Adventures Call for a Strong Female

Faces in the Water (The Shades of Venice, #1)Faces in the Water by Tonya Macalino
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In the near future, reality TV has taken the next step with immersion entertainment brought to you by studios employing nano-teched-out “immersion artists” who can record every sensory experience possible. Everything from the simple taste of coffee to swimming with sharks to tastes which run even more exotic…or erotic.

In this world comes Alyse Bryant, a world famous immersion artist who has recently lost her father to a tragic accident, which leaves her reckless in her mourning. She agrees to take her recording team to a charity ball in the Quarantine Zone of Old Venice. For in this world, all the carriers of a disease which has caused innumerable children the world over to fall into a permanent sleep, have been gathered into this fishbowl of luxury among flooding ruins.

There, Alyse’s recklessness drives her to find solace in the arms of a stranger which in turn leads her to a race for her life through a watery graveyard of old Europe. Those who pursue who are not quite human anymore, yet they may hold all the answers to what has become of her.

Tonya Macalino has presented an erotic and beautifully written story just as tantalizing as any immersion artist could.

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Review: A Tale Born of a Thousand Influences

Deomans of Faerel (World of Faerel)Deomans of Faerel by Ted Fauster
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In Deoman’s of Faerel, those of us who grew up with Dungeons & Dragons will recognize the classic gathering of varied and colorful characters to go on campaign to accomplish great deeds.

Such is the premise behind this story of a group of people, mostly flawed, but also mostly dead or dying, gathered magically from their perspective worlds and given a second chance to do some good in the universe. A “retired” angel is pulling the strings, explaining to them that once upon a time the original laborers and engineers who created Earth at the direction of the Creator made another world, but not entirely sanctioned. This world needs help. Help from heroes, however flawed.

Ted Fauster introduces us to an incredibly imaginative world peopled with creatures Jim Henson would be proud of. Our heroes, upon arrival, take on the forms of these colorful creatures; reborn in the fashion of “River World.” Indeed, Fauster’s influences are evident in not just Philip Jose Farmer, but also in tales as diverse as the Dark Crystal, Dr. Seuss, and ancient mythology.

Though a quick read, a lot is packed into the pages. I found myself distracted by the individual adventures of each hero as they arrived separately, often forgetting who is who among the other characters from both worlds. Despite that, I loved one adventure in particular reminiscent of a sequence from Running Man.

Overall, you won’t be disappointed and a firm foundation has been set for further adventures in Faerel.

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Review: Refreshing Creatures Rule This World

Murder of CrowsMurder of Crows by Athena
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Just like the heroine of Murder of Crows, this story has a duality to it. Two stories in one.

Fable Montgomery has always felt out of place. Not in the sense that she was raised by her aunt and gaggle of “Nana’s” in their Portland, Oregon home, or that her mother died tragically when she was young, or even that her estranged archaeologist father has not figured prominently in her life. But in the sense she doesn’t belong to this world.

She doesn’t know just how right she is until the FBI call her back to Portland away from her unfulfilling journalist job in New York to deal with the aftermath of her aunt’s murder.

Soon Fable is thrust into the adventures of two worlds…the film noir murder mystery of this world, and the Narnia-esque salvation of another. The latter being where she discovers she had made a mind-bending sacrifice that is just as troubling as her slowly returning memory. Even more troubling is the fact those who love her most refuse to help her recover her memory.

In a book market clogged with vampires, werewolves, and zombies, it is refreshing that Athena has painted us a new world where (winged) extraordinary creatures rule.

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Review: Hollywood Cowboys: Kiss of the Traitor

Kiss of the TraitorKiss of the Traitor by Mike Chinakos
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Kiss of the Traitor picks up right where Hollywood Cowboys left off with the supernatural fighting 80’s metal band racing to find a cure for their friend before he fully “turns” to a vampire.

In doing so, they attract the attention of an ancient vengeful being who plans on picking up where the last Cowboy-vanquished bad-guy left off: Assembling the pieces of a talisman that will open the Hell Gate which will, you guessed it, bring Hell on Earth.

To stop her and save their friend, the Cowboys will travel to the Land of the Rising Sun, Japan, to fight their way to an invisible island frozen in time.

Chinakos brings us great fun and adventure again with this second outing which plays like an R-rated episode of Scooby Doo (and I mean that in the coolest way possible). But, just like the 80’s action genre which inspired this romp, a definite tongue-in-cheek suspension of belief must be taken when considering that a full on gun battle in the industrial section of Portland Oregon goes entirely unnoticed by the police, among other things.

Rock’n’roll figures less prominently in this story, replaced by a nod to martial arts action flicks and an introduction to the evils of tech corporations with a nemesis worthy of the Umbrella Corporation from Resident Evil.

You won’t be disappointed.

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Echoes of Avalon #1 in Historical Fantasy and #10 in Epic Fantasy!

Echoes of Avalon has jumped in the Free Kindle Store rankings on its first day of promotion!

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Echoes of Avalon ebook FREE during Holiday Weekend

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Echoes of Avalon will be free in the Kindle store during the Thanksgiving weekend, starting Wednesday November 25th, and ending Sunday November 29th. Ripples in the Chalice will be discounted during this period as well, starting at $0.99. Various wonderful ebook reviewer sites and blogs will be promoting Echoes of Avalon; a different website almost each day. Even if you’re not up for downloading my books, I’d seriously check these reviewer sites out as they have amazing deals going on all the time. You could conceivably spend the rest of your reading-life without having to buy another book. And don’t forget, there is also a Goodreads giveaway for the paperback of Ripples in the Chalice going on right now through the 29th as well.

Echoes of Avalon will be featured on these sites on these dates:

Wednesday, November 25th — Free Kindle Books and Tips at http://wp.me/p6txNL-7xV

Friday, November 27th — Ebook Hounds (under Bailey’s Daily Deals) at http://www.ebookhounds.com

Friday, November 27th — Ereader News Today at http://ereadernewstoday.com/tag/fantasy/

Saturday, November 28th — The Choosy Bookworm at www.choosybookworm.com

 

 

 

Events Featuring “Tales of Avalon” Series

The next couple of months are full of events where I will be promoting “Echoes of Avalon” and “Ripples in the Chalice,” and raising awareness on some great topics as well.

November through the 29th: Goodreads paperback giveaway for Ripples in the Chalice.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ripples in the Chalice by Adam Copeland

Ripples in the Chalice

by Adam Copeland

Giveaway ends November 29, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

 

November 14th, 1-4PM, Authorama

At Salem Public Library. A celebration of local authors and talent of the Willamette Valley.

Authorama November 14 Small

November 20-22, Orycon, all day

Tales of Avalon will be available for purchase in the dealers room of this staple of Oregon SciFi and Fantasy convention held this year at downtown Portland’s Marriot Hotel.

November 25th-29th, Free Kindle and Discounted ebooks:

Through the Black Friday weekend “Echoes of Avalon” and the Tower will be free as kindle ebooks, and starting Wednesday the 25th “Ripples in the Chalice” will start out at $0.99 and slowly increase to its full price by the end of Sunday the 29th.

December 3rd, Barnes & Noble reading, 6PM, Clackamas B&N

I’ll be the first featured author of the evening to read from his novel for the joint venture between Willamette Writers and Barnes & Noble for their “Books for Kids” program.

December 12th, Brian Tashima’s Launch Party for his Spectraland Saga and Benefit for Autism Empowerment, 8PM-1AM, Tardis Room

MOTM Launch Party Poster - TARDIS Room v2

Goodreads Giveaway for Historical Fantasy “Ripples in the Chalice”

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ripples in the Chalice by Adam Copeland

Ripples in the Chalice

by Adam Copeland

Giveaway ends November 29, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

The End is Near; Here is a Teaser Image for You.

Soon, very soon my friends….

Final RIC Back Blurb image

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