THE RISING WIND By Ken Floro III

The Rising WindA dull story this is not. With minimal characters, the reader soon dives into the story without a backward glance. The Rising Wind is based on a ship – The Rising Wind, and a remote island, but this is no ordinary island, far from it!

The island is inhabited by trolls, who eat animals and humans. They are not easy to kill for their bulky body, although they are dumb. This brings me to the Imperial Knights – Marcavius (Marc) and Montefax (Monty), who come on board of the ship to travel the seas on their voyage home. With them, come on board a goblin – their guardian, a monk, a thief – Din, a navigator and the only woman – Adrianna.

What begins as a pleasant voyage, turns dangerous when the ship is set off course by a fault – on first glance. They arrive at the island on the navigator’s persistence and so begins a tirade of entering the cursed island and rescues on numerous occasions. This is always led by the brave Imperial Knights of Steelvaeran.

Among the characters, Adrianna has a small role, perhaps significant but I cannot be sure. Nevertheless, she is a breath of fresh air. She is also, very much in love with a certain knight!

Ken Floro III takes the reader through rough undergrowth, frightening trolls, the haunting undead and other paranormal happenings. The book is simply written and easy to follow. Ken Floro III keeps the reader entertained throughout the novel. I liked how the author did not reflect on the character’s past during the telling of the story, as most novels do. This method of writing proved to be quite successful in bringing the story forward and avoided lagging.

Who are my favourite characters? It has to be the Knights for their fabulous witty personalities and bravery, and my worst is Din and the navigator, which, once you have read this book, you will understand why!

Thank you Ken, for this wonderful read!

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About the Book – About the Author – Prizes!!!

About the prizes: Who doesn’t love prizes? You could win one of two $50 Amazon gift cards or an autographed copy of The Rising Wind! Here’s what you need to do…

  1. Enter the Rafflecopter contest
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That’s it! One random commenter during this tour will win the first gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win–the full list of participating bloggers can be found here. The other two prizes will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form linked below or on the official Rising Wind tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!

About the book: After graduating into the Imperial knighthood, Marcavius and his cousin book passage aboard a merchant ship, the Rising Wind, to visit their family estate before reporting to the legions. They know no ship dares tread the heart of the Mennaidran Sea, yet along their voyage a strange fog suddenly sets the Rising Wind adrift in those haunted waters. Fortunately another passenger offers his skill as a navigator to save the day, yet he insists that the ship first detour to a nearby island to replenish its supplies. There the ship’s unlucky passengers soon learn that the monsters and magic of legend are no mere myths! Friends, strangers, and even bitter enemies must work together in order to survive and escape. Yet some of the greatest dangers they’ll face are destined to come from one another. Get The Rising Wind through Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Ken Floro IIIAbout the author: Ken was born and raised in the South side of Saint Louis. After earning a degree in World Literature, followed by a degree in Culinary Arts, Ken soon made the obvious career move and went to work in medicine.

If you’re having any trouble guessing why, then you’ve probably never served time in the literary or culinary fields. A little taste of reality can suddenly turn a healthy paycheck, normal working hours, and long-term job security into sumptuous delicacies. Despite the sudden change in his employment trajectory, Ken never turned away from his dream of writing.

He’d nurtured a lifelong creative ambition, which had gained direction when a funny true story he wrote for a high school English class became so popular with his classmates they traded copies of it in the hall and passed them up and down the bus. Ever since that catalytic moment, Ken has been writing as a hobby and a passion. Thus far, he’s published eight books, along with several other tidbits. Connect with Ken on his website, Facebook, GoodReads, or Twitter.

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THE ENCOUNTER By Chrystalla Thoma

The Encounter, episode one of Boreal and John Grey

Chrsytalla Thoma did not disappoint. Her fast-action, paranormal fantasy captured my attention from the first page andencounter1-300x336 took me through to the end in no time. I was impressed by her excellent story-telling and by how her scenes were so vivid; I truly felt I was there in the action!

Encounter, Episode 1 of Boreal and John Grey, is about Ella, a Paranormal Bureau Agent. What does she do? She fights Shades! The shades are nasty creatures that enter the world through a veil that thins. They are here to KILL – their main objective, but upon whose orders – no one knows. Only a handful of people can see the Shades, such as Ella. Some are able to hear them and they are called Oracles.

Simon, Ella’s Paranormal Agent partner, is missing and so Ella begins her search to find him. Along the way, Ella is saved twice from viscous Shade attacks by a mysterious man, who follows the thinning of the veil. She wants to recruit him but he has put up a barrier. There is more to this man and Ella won’t stop until she knows more about him. But where is Simon? What is happening in this world and how are so many Shades able to enter, to Kill?

A short read it is but Chrystalla Thoma has promised more. I, for one, want to find out who and what John Grey is – a name that keeps cropping up. I want to know what lies beyond the veil. I hope to find out in Episode 2!

Well done Chrystalla on a wonderful start.

A Witch in Winter by Ruth Warburton

Two of the things which enticed me to read this novel was the word ‘witch’ in the title and the other thing was the cover look. These elements made me stop and reach out for the book which spelt out ‘intriguing’, ‘must read’, and ‘paranormal’. I couldn’t resist.   The story starts with Anna arriving in a small town called Winter. She is to start school and make new friends.   Anna makes friends quickly and meets a boy called Seth, who she instantly likes. Seth, however, is already taken and Anna is fine by this. One day, Anna and her friends try a love spell as a joke. Anna thinks of Seth although she never meant to. She didn’t believe in all this hocus pocus anyway and she thought they were all just having fun…until the next day, she realised what she had done!

Anna tries every counter spell to release poor Seth but to no avail. Instead it brings trouble and she finds out that she is a witch!

She is also very powerful.

The story takes us on a roller coaster ride of events. Anna finds out things which she thought was not possible, yet she is to fight these demons to save the town of Winter and to save Seth and her father.   I loved this story so much that I couldn’t put it down. The writing was flawless; there was no confusion and no page was boring. An original tale in it’s own right.   If there was one thing to be picked upon, it’s that I wish there were more magical elements and surprises. Saying that, I look forward to the sequel.

Navarasa by Lotus, by an author Rajiv

When I began to read this quirky collection of short stories, I was apprehensive as I don’t usually read short stories.   Well, I was pleasantly surprised. The collection is made up of nine short stories which are interlinked in plot and character in a sequence of events. The characters are diverse and there are many surprises along the way.

To write a review for a book such as this, I must talk about all nine as without, the review wouldn’t be much of a review.

SEED, is the first story which is about an Indian superstar who is known for his anger, good looks and carismatic personality. The story begins with Rajan (the star) in a fight with an inmate. What happens after is a series of flashbacks. What came to be a surprise was the ending which was totally unexpected!

RAT, the second in line, tones down to three friends who talk about life, smoking, drinking and Rajan the star. What begins as a casual conversation turns defensive. However, the first part and the last part are interlinked and I am glad to see a semi happy ending.

MUTINY. This one failed me. I didn’t relate to it at all. The story is about mosquitos and of thier livelyhood as blood seekers. Their host is one of the three friends we see in RAT. Intriguing as it may be, I failed to see the meaning of the story and skipped to the end to find it. Was there a meaning?

T20. This was one of the my favourites. It is based on a relationship between Teja and Manoj, which is on the rocks. Through Teja’s turmoil and love for Manoj, we see their ‘relationship’ from beginning to the present. Desperately wanting to amend their relationship which we see spiralling down, Teja thinks of how that may be possible. The end of the story doesn’t being us a happy ending but it does make us think ‘what if’.

LOOP. The reader will definitly be in a loop here! If you have seen Groundhog Day (1993), you will understand this short. LOOP is cleverly written, involving a girl called Lucky who thinks she is going mad as events seem to be repeating themselves over several days or weeks? She seeks the help of Dr. Guna who is a phyciatrist. But how was he to know he was in the loop too? These bizarre twists can only be broken by facing the problem!

WISH. Little Chintu is being bullied by his sister, from his classmates as well as the cruel teacher. Chintu is sad and can’t understand why everyone is cruel to him. Then he meets Rajan, the superstar and in a stroke of luck, he see’s a way to gain respect and revenge. We see two mini stories here – one is Chintu’s and one is Rajan’s. We now understand why Rajan was taken to jail and how Chintu gets his revenge.

OFFICE. Rajiv joins a new company in the hope to get his ex-girlfriend back. He realises that everyone is calm in this new office. There are no arguements or fights. He also feels changed as he has stopped smoking, drinking and leering/flirting at other women. Rajiv learns of a strange interference and confronts his boss. Does Rajiv get his girl back? Does he find out what is happening in this place? Yes and no, for in this short, a time machine is involved…

N.H. This is a continuation of OFFICE. I won’t say what happens here for it is wonderful and very entertaining. I, for one, wished I could see more of N.H.

REDEMPTION. Anand is in remorse for what he has done and he wants to show how sorry he is to the parents of the victim. This short summaries all the other eight short stories in one. We understand now and see perhaps, redemption?   So, here we have it. A collection that all readers will enjoy. It will leave you thinking about the stories and their characters long after you have finished reading. It will make you question the motives, the ‘what if’s’ and more.

A good read!