An Alessandro Review: Behemoth and the Wisp by Linn Edwards

Standard

Rating: 2 stars out of 5

 

The Compound protects the remnants of often horrific human experimentation during World War II. Now a new generation comes of age, some with strange powers and abilities, groomed to be weapons for justice.

Mason and Jordie are young men, each with a special gift and strongly attracted to each other. When they finally reach out and really connect, they must also be careful. Mason can become intangible like a mist, then completely whole and solid again — even during sex. Jordie is a nine foot tall giant, able to leap great distances in a single bound. Together they face challenges in figuring out sex and love.

When a woman in their group at The Compound appears to be kidnapped, Mason and Jordie must put aside their own secrets to help her. But they soon discover everyone secrets, and not everyone in The Compound is who they seem.

 

Mason aka The Wisp and Jordie aka Behemoth are living in a compound founded by the government, they are basically heroes in training. They are told that they would be safe in the compound, but when Mason wants to get some alone time to relieve the sexual tension he has build up because of Jordie, his room-mate, one of their fellow companions gets kidnapped. So Behemoth and The Wisp has to work together to solve the problem that came up. Not only the kidnapping, but other things that seem strange in the compound.

First of all, I really liked the first few pages of this book. Basically it was the only thing I liked about this book.

The first few pages actually explain how those super heroes came to be. Also there was a small side-story about a folks-tale, which was quite interesting. I didn’t know the name of the folks-tale, but apparently it is called “Widows Walk” at least that’s what it’s called what the woman does in said Folks-tale.

It was quite a good beginning and I thought, this is probably relevant to the story in this book, because there is also this woman, who is just named “Madame” in this facility who is basically the “mother figure” of said super heroes in training. But I thought wrong. It wasn’t something I expected.

 The story was really fast paced, after only a few minutes I was already at 15% or something. So I thought to myself, that this is just a super short story, so I lowered my expectations about this book. But even then I couldn’t really find anything to enjoy about this book. Every time a problem came up, it was resolved in a few sentences. There was no story build up at all, there was no struggle at all. I thought this book would involve some action, but there was like minimum to non action. The sex scenes were quite predictable, because every time there was progress in the plot there was a sex scene. Then came another plot scene and another sex scene.

I also struggled with the relationship of the MC. Yes it is said that those MC know each other for some years know, but neither of them exploited their sexual desire or emotions. I just thought there was not a real connection between those two, maybe there was, but we, as readers, didn’t get to read about that. And after one event they’re in love and behave like they were in a relationship for I don’t know how long?

To my next point. I didn’t enjoy the writing either. It was good to some extend, but even I who is not a native English speaker, could see some mistakes in tenses and grammar.

This book is written in third person POV, so I expect, when I’m following more than one person, that in every chapter or section there will be an indication to which person I’m following at the moment. This was the case, to some extent. Often I was confused which person I was following in the moment, so I had to reread some sections of the books, which is quite shocking, because it was such a short story.

I feel like there was such potential in this book. The ideas were great, but the execution was lacking. This story would be okay, if it would be a start of graphic novel or a comic book? But not really in book form. There was just not much to picture here, so I think the author didn’t do a good job in portraying the story she wanted to tell.

 

The cover of “Behemoth and the Wisp” by “Written Ink Designs” was okay. I think it could be used to any book about super heroes to be honest. Although the suits of the characters portrayed in the cover didn’t match the suits of the characters in the book.

 

Sales links:   JMS Books LLC | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook
Published April 22nd 2017 by JMS Books LLC
ISBN139781634863650

 

The Never Ending Winter Whine and the Week Ahead in Reviews

Standard

Winter trees longs

Yes, its still Winter!  White, white everywhere and not a drop of green to be seen.  We have snow, icicles and water in about every frozen variation there is and I am heartedly sick of it.  We finally saw a snow plow late last night.  It had to dodge a Prius and a small sedan of unknown origin whose owners thought their vehicles capable of navigating through over 19 inches of snow.  What were they thinking?  I do know they left their cars where they were stuck, one right in the middle of the street interchange until a neighbor helped them move it to the side of the street.  I do  know what the driver of the plow thought about that as he plowed DSCN4178_2them under a ton of snow last night.  That car was gone this morning and I was happy not to witness the amount of shoveling they had to do to release their  car from that cold embrace.

I have been throwing food out to the birds and wildlife as much as possible and my birdseed reserve is running dry.  Even the snowy owl that stopped in Washington, DC, in search of better weather has had a rough time of it.  She was hit by a Metro bus and ended up at a Wildlife hospital.  She is recovering and so shall we all.  It just doesn’t feel like that right now for either of us.

Hopefully I can get out to the stores tomorrow.  But of course, it has started snowing again.  Big, large fluffy white flakes.  Just the sort I love as a child or even an adult a few, ok more than a few, years back.   So I am beginning to feel like a Grinch these days as the snow mounts instead of melts.  Lasts night my favorite meteorologist forcasted temperatures in the 50’s and maybe even 60’s for next week.

Should I believe him?

Or does he just have a case of snow fever and a sick sense of humor.  Only time and the temperature will tell.

I have some wonderful books for you this week.  There is crippled werewolves, hardened mercenaries, the Fae and an American army vet, a lethal world virus and of course, a revised story from one of my favorite series, Blue Notes.  There are contests and guest author blogs.  Truly something for everyone.  Stay with me all week long.

The week ahead in reviews:

Monday, Feb. 17, 2014:         Kept Tears by Jana Denardo

Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014:        Lying with Scorpions by Aleksandr Voinov

Wed., Feb. 19, 2014:              Amelia Gormley’s Strain Book Tour and Contest

Thurs., Feb. 20, 2014:          Shira Anthony’s Blue Notes Release Tour and Contest

Friday, Feb. 21, 2014:            Strain by Amelia Gormley

Sat., Feb. 22, 2014:                Pretty Poison by Kari Gregg

Review of Magic’s Muse (Hidden Places #2) by Anne Barwell

Standard

Rating: 4.5 points

Tomas Kemp and Cathal Emerys have finally returned to Tomas’ home after escaping from Naearu, Cathal’s world in an alternative universe.  And while the men hope they are finally safe from Cathal’s cousin, Lady Deryn and the laws governing his world, neither man really believes it.  The cost of their escape is high.  Christian, another of Cathal’s cousins, has lost almost everything he loved and is confined to the shape of a cat for as long as the magic of his punishment holds.  Cathal is also confined within the boundaries of the inn where they now reside, chained by magic to the oak tree that is the portal between the worlds.

Cathal’s nightmares are increasing now that he and Tomas have consummated their relationship and Tomas seems to be acquiring some magic of his own in the interim.  Naearu’s enforcers, The Falcons, are still capable of coming after them, and nightly Lady Deryn whispers threats in Cathal’s mind, promising to kill Tomas if Cathal doesn’t return to their world and marry her. Cathal and Tomas are struggling with their relationship, Cathal is still keeping secrets from Tomas and Tomas is still trying to overcome his self centered impulses and isolated ways to find a way to have an equal relationship with Cathal.  Only when the portal is closed, can both men feel safe to plan for their future.

Magic’s Muse is the second in the Hidden Places series but the first that I have read by Anne Barwell.  The first book, Cat’s Quill, centers around Tomas’s meeting Cathal and their time in Naearu.  It sets out Anne Barwell’s world and myth building that is so important to the events that occur here and introduces us to characters in the continuing storyline of  the Hidden Places.  That said, I am not sure I wish to  go back and read what must be a very bittersweet story.  If I do, it will be because Anne Barwell has such a beautiful way with the English language.  Her sentences flow with a magic all of their own, transporting us easily to places we have never been to meet people not of this world.  Her narrative is rich in its descriptions and the tumultuous emotions of all the characters involved.  From the lyrical passages of the countryside with its fields and  magical oak tree to the  dust motes in the attic of the inn that has been the focal point of time travel, it makes us feel that we are there, listening to the floor boards creak and the branches sigh with the wind.

Her characters are as rich and complex as the story she is telling.  Tomas Kemp is a author of popular books and initially a tough character to invest your affections in.  He comes across as extremely self centered, oblivious sometimes to the feelings of those closest to him. Tomas’ attention is all about his writing, he is consumed with his stories, one of which will bring him into contact with Lord Cathal Emerys of Naearu. We can recognize Tomas as one whose social skills are sadly lacking and whose focus is always somewhere else, even when someone is talking to him. Indeed while Tomas can come off as quite dour, Cathal shimmers with magic and vulnerability.  Cathal easily endears himself to the reader, for Tomas it takes a little longer.  Cathal misses his family even as he recognizes that Tomas’ world is the only place they will be safe and have a future. Cathal is filled with guilt over his role in Christian’s punishment and struggling to find a balance in his relationship with Tomas.  So much is going on in Cathal’s head and heart that sometimes he is feel estranged from the every day moments in the inn. Barwell imbues all of her characters with so much heart, soul, and intelligence that everyone breathes and bleeds across the pages.

And bleed these characters do.  Whether is it actual blood, or their emotions bleeding out of them, there is so much sadness and loss within these story that your heart hurts from reading it.  Christian is an especially tragic figure.  Condemned to being a cat, he was torn away form his wife and  newborn son.  His beloved wife continued to wait for him to return up to her last breath as what is months in one world is years in Tomas’.  And now his son is dying in a nursing home and his grandson needs him badly.  Christian’s wife’s sketches and paintings pop up throughout the story bringing with them the bittersweet memories of their all too short time together.  He too awaits the closing of the portal, the only thing that will restore his human form.  No character is left untouched by regret or sorrow.  Looming over all the events occurring is the threat that the Falcons can reappear to pull one or all of them back to Naearu for judgment and jail.  Over and over we are told their reappearance is eminent and the foreboding builds incrementally. And that brings me to my only quibble with this tale.

We are left with quite a few dangling ends of the saga, so many that I assume that another book will follow this one.  A child is still missing, two characters have just paired up and all agree that Lady Deryn will never give up on her goal of marriage to Cathal and her need to destroy Tomas. With all that hanging over our couple and their friends at the end, I would classify this as a happy for now, not the happy ever after others see it as.  Perhaps I am wrong, but I think not.  That would let Cathal and Tomas off too easily, something I would not expect of Barwell and her saga building. With descriptive passages and a richly enthralling narrative Barwell conjures up a tale of two worlds and a rising rebellion that will effect both.  This story can only be part of a much larger plan.  I look forward to seeing what comes next.

Cover by Anne Cain is one of my absolute favorites.  As rich in detail and evocative in feeling as the book itself, it is one of my best of the year.

Hidden Places series in the order they should be read:

Cat’s Quill (Hidden Places#1) 350 pages

Magic’s Muse (Hidden Places #2)  294 pages