Daily Archives: November 14, 2009

Review – Sorceress

Sorceress – Even Better than Book 1 in the Series!

Rating: 5 of 5, TMBOA Recommended
Author:
David Korinetz

Available: Paperback

After defeating the powerful sorceress Magdalen and stripping her of her power to save their world from the evil Halfling emperor, the small and brave band of Balorian Knights along with the wizard Aldus make their way home to their families.  Unfortunately, the emperor does not give up so easily and soon he regains control of the talisman Aedon they worked so hard to retrieve.  Haunted by his love for the sorceress, Rodney is driven to take his knights once again into harms way to free his once nemesis Magdalen and recover Aedon or all they have worked so hard to obtain will be forever lost.

David Korinetz’s Sorceress is book 2 in the Chronicles of the Daemon Knights.  This offering is even more developed and the action and characters more compelling than in his wonderful debut novel.  In Sorceress Korinetz sets up multiple parallel story arcs – each one which could have been an independent and compelling story unto their own.  He masterfully weaves in each as the tension builds in each arc to its ultimate climax where all arcs eventually join.  I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough.  Korinetz’s writing is further refined and one of my favorite sub stories from the first novel involving the transformation of humans and animals into were-beasts is revisited.  The heros set out to take on the witch Angelina and save their fallen comrade has one wondering how they could possibly take on such a powerful witch and band of powerful were-beasts and come out alive.  This is where Korinetz shines – setting up what should be an impossible scenario involving a rag-tag group of underdogs who must find a way to overcome overwhelming odds.  I’d like to consider myself a fairly creative person but in each and every case where the impossible scenario was setup, I was convinced Korinetz had written himself into a corner leaving no reasonable solution out of the situation.  Not only was I wrong, but I found myself more than satisfied by Korinetz compelling story telling.

My only complaint, is Korinetz ends this book with a huge cliffhanger.  When I finished reading it, I felt the same way I did in my younger years after seeing the end of The Empire Strikes Back in theaters.  I couldn’t wait to see the next movie.  In similar fashion, I have to know what happens next.  The good news is, Korinetz is hard at work on the next chapter of this series.  It’s already on my list…

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Review – And the Devil Laughed

And the Devil Laughed – Murder in a Small Australian Coastal Town

Rating: 4 of 5
Author: Carole Sutton

Available: Paperback

Recovering from the trauma of her own brutal attack and subsequent personal tragedies, detective Hannah Ford attempts to regain her career and life by going undercover to investigate drug trafficking in a small Australian coastal town.  But things quickly become more complicated for Hannah when a local bar maid’s body turns up in a newly excavated grave.  Convinced these events may be connected, Hannah investigates both  crimes in hopes of finding the truth.  Unfortunately, she must battle her past demons haunting her every move while the town’s killer soon stalks her as their next victim.

For those who have ever lived in or visited a small town, there is something special about the way everyone knows everyone else – their families, their past, their desires, and their secrets.  But while the town’s residents are inviting to visitors, being able to be truly taken in and trusted as one of their own is quite a different matter.  Inherent in these small towns is a mistrust of outsiders especially when something untoward such as a murder takes place.  Suddenly everyone clams up concerned that external prying eyes may discover secrets folks would rather have left buried and forgotten.  In And the Devil Laughed, Sutton does a marvelous job at creating such a small town.  Her characters are wonderfully complex, flawed, and filled with intrigue – each one having their own personal hardships, interests – and more often than not – something to hide.  The isolation of this tight knit community further adds to the overall ambiance of this unique mystery.

As in her debut novel, Ferryman, Sutton draws on her sea fairing experience to provide the reader with a sense of realism that can only be achieved by someone having a love and passion for sailing.  In Agatha Christie flair, Sutton introduces us skillfully to an eclectic mix of characters each having their own potential reasons for committing the crime.  I, for one, was left guessing until the very satisfying and action packed ending.

Sutton’s readers will not be disappointed.  And the Devil Laughed is an entertaining and engaging read.

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