Review: Once A Princess

Once a Princess by Sherwood Smith is the first of two novels in the rather laboriously named Sasharia en Garde! duology. I thought at first that this was from Net Galley, but now I’m beginning to think it might have been a kindle freebie on Amazon. I’m not familiar with the author – this is, as far as I know, the first of Smith’s books I’ve read, (though I’ve heard the name more than once recently…) but according to the author’s website, Sasharia en Garde! is actually one story split into two parts, set in Sartorias-deles, a world featured in many of the author’s other works. This background information makes a lot of sense of some points that bothered me about Once a Princess.

But we’ll get to that part in a bit. [Read more…]

Review: Raven’s Strike

Raven’s Strike is the second book in Patricia Briggs‘ rather wonderful Raven Duology.  I reviewed the first book, Raven’s Shadow, here.

Raven’s Strike picks up soon after the end of Raven’s Shadow: Tier, Seraph, Jes, Lehl, and Hennea have collected Rinnie and returned to the farm near Redern following the events of Raven’s Shadow. Their hard-earned peace is soon interrupted by the arrival of Phoran, a friend of Tier’s and an ally from Raven’s Shadow, with some bad news. Another Epic Quest™ ensues, this time with the whole family along for the ride. And anyone else they pick up along the way, or so it seems. [Read more…]

Review: The Sevenfold Spell

Cover of The Sevenfold SpellGrand adventure and romance always works out so well in fairy tales, but not every girl is a princess…

In an utterly unique and charming turn on the traditional fairy tale, Tia Nevitt takes us “behind the scenes” in the story of Sleeping Beauty, where plain spinster Talia loses her livelihood – and prospective bridegroom – when the kingdom’s spinning wheels are destroyed by royal edict.

The harsh realities of life, disastrous attempts at learning to weave, and an ever-dwindling supply of money soon result in Talia and her mother making the risky decision to try to build their own spinning wheel despite the ban – and with no money to spare, Talia has to find some way to pay in kind for the skills and materials they need…

An extremely enjoyable light read, The Sevenfold Spell appealed to both my love of fairy tales, and my far-too-infrequently-indulged liking for non-traditional romance. Talia is far from a pure, sheltered maiden, and her knight in shining armour is neither lordly, gallant – or even present for most of the book!

For those who enjoy an alternate take on a traditional tale, or who are just looking for some enjoyable spring reading, The Sevenfold Spell is highly recommended.

Note: This review first appeared here on my blog Fumbling Towards Nirvana.

Review: Not Your Typical, Scantily-Clad Virgin Sacrifice

Not Your Typical, Scantily-Clad Virgin Sacrifice is a hilariously-named collection of short stories by H. Jonas Rhynedahll. I picked up an .epub version from an author giveaway after the title attracted my interest. [Read more…]

Review: Raven’s Shadow

Raven’s Shadow is the first book in Patricia BriggsRaven Duology. The books are a Quest tale set in the (as far as I can tell) unnamed Empire, a typical high fantasy medieval world with horses, palaces, and men who wander around with swords.

And magic, of course. [Read more…]