A Chaos Moondrawn Review : Tarragon (Rise of the Symbionts #4) by Jo Tannah

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5

This is the fourth book in the series, but it’s a prequel. The first three books mention Tarragon, the first and greatest of the technomage kings of Oryon. He became king at 18. This is the story of how he came to have a symbiont, and planned for the survival of his family, setting the stage for everything in the last three books. Yet, this can also be read as the first book without any problems: the other three must be read in order. Having said that, this ends abruptly leading me to believe this will also be a trilogy about how the symbionts in the first book came about.

Although there is a Council of Kings, the Capricis and Zaruthrans attacked the Dacrons, leading to years of war. Tarragon is the last of his line, becoming king on his eighteenth birthday. While his father insisted that he fight his magic, when they are close to being defeated, he embraces it. Not trained to either be king, or to use his magic, he turns to the mountain mages to help him and learns history of his world that was lost to his kingdom. With his Guardian, Brenn, he finds the will and allies he needs to fight his enemies and save his vassals. He plans to change Oryon so mages are no longer shunned due to fear.

The loss, deaths, and Tarragon psychically comforting his clan in their grief, is heartbreaking. Tarragon and Brenn becoming lovers, while a huge complication, was inevitable. The characters are cast about from one entertaining emergency to another, but that doesn’t hide some of the issues. The broken trust, not once but twice, between him and Brenn is never addressed. The fact that no other king has kept tabs on Kayel, for both their technology and their mages seems astonishing to me. After all, they do sell the technology to other kingdoms. There is never a good explanation for how the magic and technology work together (in any of the four books). The reader is just supposed to accept these things work because they are told they do. I would have liked to avoid the cliche of phrases like “once in every generation” and the idea that Tarragon is the being of a long held prophesy. There are abrupt shifts of mood between scenes on occasion, as well as the emotions and responses of the characters are sometimes uneven. Still, the whole thing is imaginative. There is something about these books or else I wouldn’t keep reading them. I have to know what happens, flaws and all, so I would recommend trying them if you want an easy science fiction romance without too much world-building or hard science.

The cover art by Angela Waters matches the other book covers. It establishes the magical and science fiction nature of the story whilst showing Tarragon how I pictured him except for that strange fur collar.

Sales Links: Extasy Books | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, First, 160 pages
Published April 12th 2019 by Extasy Books
Original TitleTarragon
ISBN139781487424589
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesRise of the Symbionts #4

A Chaos Moondrawn Review :Royal Guardian (Rise of the Symbionts #1) by Jo Tannah

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

Lando is a man genetically bred by machines for security purposes. By the age of 12, he is one of the top 20 security specialists on the planet Oryon based on his intelligence and skill. He is training to be a Royal Guardian assigned to Prince Kallen, a powerful technomage. Prince Kallen was born sickly and is dying. When unknown inhabitants of the planet Nigul sent a distress call to Oryon, they arrive too late to save anyone while the planet is destroyed. Lando finds an egg with a sentient being inside that seems to have empathic abilities. The symbiont, Bobik, attaches itself to the Prince after it hatches, healing him.

There is an eight years age gap between the Prince and Lando. While Lando is in love with his prince, he never thinks anything will come of it. Kallen has other ideas–though he waits until his 18th birthday to make his feelings known. When Kallen names Lando Prince Consort, Lord Commander Militant Cheol, unhappy with the union and the symbiont, resigns his position and leaves with fifteen thousand guardsmen. While Lando hunts Cheol, Kallen leaves for Vespa to study magical protocols for two years. Lando becomes Lord Commander Militant, security and advisor to the King. When the Prince is kidnapped and Bobik is not with him, they fear the worst. Is Cheol involved? Are there other enemies they don’t know about? Many fear the alien Bobik and Kallen is such a powerful technomage already.

Although this was slow to get going, I actually enjoyed this. The love scene is strange as Bobik is involved. Part two will undoubtedly take up the search for Cheol. Lando also found a new egg as part of a mission assigned him by the King. I expect this is how the rise of the symbionts (the subtitle) will happen. I would have preferred this to be a long novel rather than having the story broken up into three novellas. Now I have to know what happens. This was an easy enjoyable read with likeable characters, low angst, and palace intrigue.

I like the cover art by Angela Waters, which communicates the story is science fiction and shows Lando.

Sales Links:       Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 76 pages
Published March 31st 2017 by eXtasy Books Inc
ISBN 1487412029 (ISBN13: 9781487412029)
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesRise of the Symbionts #1

An Alisa Review: Kaleidoscope (CyNapse Security, Inc. #1) by Jo Tannah

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Julian Davis has no time for love—everything must be under control. He steers clear of messy emotions or out-of-control passions. This attitude is the key to his success as the VP of CyNapse, one of the world’s leading technology companies. When Tarek Kettner is assigned as his lead bodyguard, Julian’s life is turned upside down. The baby-faced bodyguard had always been Julian’s secret weakness. After one intimate encounter with Tarek, Julian begins to question his life decisions.

Tarek is one of the deadliest bodyguards working for CyNapse Security, Inc. He also wants to show Julian what it would be like to have a meaningful, loving, and trusting relationship instead of one based on physical passion and lust.

Can Julian let go of his apprehensions and embrace Tarek’s offer of love when his life is in danger?

I enjoyed this story, it apparently connects with a previously released story from Jo but it didn’t take away from this one even though I hadn’t read it.  Julian has spent his life keeping most at arm’s length and not getting into any relationships.  Tarek has been able to keep his thoughts about Julian at bay until he finds him at a gay bar one night when Julian has once again slipped form his protection detail.

Tarek and Julian seemed to kinds jump head first into their relationship and they weren’t on the same page.  You could see how they both wanted more but didn’t voice it until much later.  There were a few times throughout the book where a topic seemed to be talked about and resolved but would come back up a few times and I’m not sure if that was due to the characters actually feeling like it wasn’t resolved or if it just wasn’t caught in editing.  I liked these guys but can’t say I was fully invested in their relationship either.  I am interested to see the mystery come full circle so I look forward to other books in the series.

The cover art by Angela Waters is great but doesn’t seem to match either of the characters.

Sales Links: Extasy Books | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 153 pages

Published: March 9, 2018 by Extasy Books

Edition Language: English

Series: CyNapse Security, Inc. #1

Can Love Heal? Find Out with ‘The Way You Look Tonight’ by Jo Tannah‏ (excerpt and giveaway)

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The Way You Look Tonight Banner
Title: The Way You Look Tonight
Author: Jo Tannah
Genre:  Gay Romance, Contemporary, May-December Romance
Series: Standards Series, Book Two
Length: Novella
Publisher: Wayward Ink Publishing

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Jo Tannah here today to share her inspiration and thoughts behind her latest story, The Way You Look Tonight.  Welcome, Jo.

First of all, thank you so much, Melanie, for having me here today and for joining my first ever blog tour. You sent me specific questions about The Way You Look Tonight. I will try to answer them as best I could so do forgive me if I ramble on a bit.

The Inspiration

The Way You Look Tonight was inspired by the lyrics of a Standard song of the same title. In fact, both books in the series and the ones in the near future, will hold the titles to these songs.

The first, What A Difference A Day Makes, tells of how one man’s life changed in twenty four hours after meeting the love of his life. The story came to me while I was driving one day and was listening to Gloria Estefan’s CD titled (you got it) The Standards. The song is the third track on that album and I just loved the way she sang it. Something clicked inside me and the men came to life. I was in the middle of the highway and was distracted throughout the three hour drive. What a drive that was. You can find it in Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/What-Difference-Day-Makes-Standards-ebook/dp/B00U6DZKS8

The Jump Start

In this second instalment, The Way You Look Tonight,  Jamie looks at his lover, Miles, and sees the real man behind the coat, the frowns, the stern countenance. Their story came to me during a time when I wanted to relax and put on a Fred Astaire/ Ginger Rogers movie. There is a scene where Fred begins singing and Ginger’s face is covered in face cream and I laughed at how silly the scene played out. Then Miles’ face came to mind, and then a karaoke microphone.

I began thinking about how this song gets sung regularly wherever there is a Karaoke around. It doesn’t matter how bad one sings it, or who does, it gets sung, period. It is a Standard after all and where I come from, karaoke is practically a national pastime.

Jamie’s character is based on several people, his situation based on a real one:  a scandal that broke out here in the country more than a decade ago. It ruined many lives, including some friends and family. It was and continues to be a depressing affair, one that is unfortunately still unresolved. Truth is, even the tragedy that strikes Jamie, how he gets the news, his reaction, they’re all based on real life events.

Laughing at Fred and Ginger made me think of two men who looked past the facades and their story began. In fact, if one were to pay close attention, scattered everywhere in books one and two, the reader would be able to spot reworded lyrics of the Standard song which set the pace to the stories. It would be fun to hear from readers when they do find those hidden words and lyrics.

The Whys

This is difficult to answer. Why do I write? Writing is like reading and I have been a bookworm since as far back as a seven year old. I wrote a blog post for Divine Magazine which is also a part of this tour. There, I wrote as much as I could reveal the whys of writing and how it is such a big part of my life. If you’re curious, hop on there as I pasting the post here would take up most of this blog page and more.

Synopsis

As a member of a wealthy and influential family, Jaime “Jamie” Abello had his life mapped out. Being shipped off to LA with an insurance scam linked to his name was not part of his plan.

It had seemed so simple: pass the Philippines Medical Board Exam;practice in the family-owned and -controlled hospital; join the Board by age forty; and find a partner with whom he could settle down and be himself.

Instead, his father supplies him with a surfeit of money and dangerous secrets and sends him to a strange country.

The Pediatric Residency Program Jamie applies for brings him face to face with untouchable Program Director, Miles Kwon, whom Jamie soon finds to be a man of integrity and vision.

When tragedy strikes, Jamie finds himself falling deeper into depression. Unexpectedly, it’s Miles who helps him work through his pain.

Will Jamie ever experience a life with a loving partner, or will his father’s secrets cause him to lose everything he’s gained?
The Way You Look Tonight Cover

Buy Links

Don’t miss the Valentine’s Day Sale (February 11-22) 50% off on WIP’s website and 40% off on ARe!

WIP: http://www.waywardinkpublishing.com/product/the-way-you-look-tonight-by-jo-tannah/
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01BDTO4U8/
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01BDTO4U8/
Amazon AU: http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B01BDTO4U8/
Amazon DE: http://www.amazon.de/dp/B01BDTO4U8/
ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-thewayyoulooktonight-1974943-149.html

Video Trailer

Giveaway

Prizes: $4.99 WIP Gift Card and ebook copy of What A Difference A Day Makes by Jo Tannah.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

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The Way You Look Tonight 3Drender

About the author

JO TANNAH is a wife, mother, and blogger by day, writer by night. It can be difficult to say the least but it is a challenge that keeps her on her toes.

She grew up listening to folktales her father and nannies spun to either entertain the children or send home a message. These narratives stayed with Jo until she finally decided to write them down in a journal way back when she kept one. Years later, going through junk led to finding a long forgotten box and nestled within it was the journal. Reading over the stories of romance, science fiction, and horror that she had taken time to put to paper all those years before brought to light the realization that they were tales she’d never come across in her readings.

The tales Jo write are fictional but all of them are based on what she grew up with and still dreams about. That they have an M/M twist is simply for her pleasure. And she hopes, yours as well.

Jo Tannah can be found at:

Website: http://www.jotannah.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jotannahauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jotannah