Showing posts with label debut. Show all posts
Showing posts with label debut. Show all posts

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Book Review: Dead by Morning by Kayla Krantz



Obsession is deadly. No one learns that better than Luna Ketz, a pessimistic high school senior. She wishes more than anything to graduate but things don’t always go as planned. Luna quickly finds herself trapped in a web of lies and murders, spun by the least suspected person in her hometown. It’s not long before she realizes she’s being targeted by the person she despises most in the world. When Luna figures out who is behind the killings, things make a turn for the bizarre when she is contacted by a friend she has not heard from in years. It is then Luna realizes she is very much in danger, but although she can avoid the killer in reality, she cannot avoid him in her dreams.


What a brilliant introduction to the series Dead By Morning makes. Here’s a horror story with heart – but it’s of the pulsating, thrilling kind.

Luna and Chance are the main characters, but readers will enjoy the interplay and realism between Luna and her father. This is a well written coming of age story that seems to be going one place before Chance decides to take things into his own hands – literally.

"It is almost like we are inside Luna’s head, just a nano-second before things just happen to her."

The horror genre has been done to death, but there are shades of great originality within the pages, and though it is a long story, it does pull you along.

I didn’t know what to make of Chance – and in the first third of the book, I bet readers won’t either. It works because we are not spoon-fed information before it happens. It is almost like we are inside Luna’s head, just a nano-second before things just happen to her.

This is a strong debut that cannot be dismissed as yet another YA story. There are more in the series so I would like to see where this goes.

Luna may not be a character one instantly warms to, but she is drawn out of realism, and I actually prefer a girl with flaws than some honey-dewed Mary Sue. It was the braver decision by the author to create her this way, and the story is all the more powerful for it.

One of the best blood-curling stories I have read for a long time.

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Book Review: Gates of Heaven by Pamita Rao


An empire ruled by evil and fear; a king obsessed with greed for greater power and desire to conquer other realms.
Alaira has just stood up against the tyranny and committed the most serious crime in the kingdom. If captured, she will face brutal punishment. With the King’s men on her back and his dark magic against her fate, she is on the run in a race against time.
With no place left to hide, her only hope is to escape through the Gates of Heaven, a mythical portal to other realms. But there is a problem. To reach the Gates of Heaven one must cross the enchanted forest and no one has ever survived it before.
Will Alaira find the Gates of Heaven? Will she be able to escape Creed or will she meet the dreaded fate of every criminal in Myrth?


It is so difficult for any writer of fantasy to come up with something new. I have read and am in the process of writing two reviews of debut novels by fantasy authors, and I needed the break inbetween to read other genres so as to review and critique them fairly.

New author Pamita Rao brings a freshness to a jaded genre with a detailed, interesting world of Myrth, which has its own qualms and quirks. In an early scene, a man is forced to drink the liquor he has brought for the king, and in doing proves - or otherwise - that it is not poisoned. It's done well as a scene, and there are numerous scenes like this throughout the book. It is extremely well written, with great characters in this detailed, magical world.

"It's such a pleasure to read a new author voice." 

I must give a special mention to the cover art, which is outstanding and really pulls you in.

Gates of Heaven is ultimately about young buck heroine Alaira coming of age. The evil Creed threatens the security and safety of the world, and it seems our young girl has her work cut out to defeat him. On her introduction, I wasn't sure if she was up for the task (the ultimate task, as it happens at the Gates of Heaven in the book's closing chapter).

The story works because you really are swept along at great speed. The story starts brightly and keeps up the pace throughout. It's such a pleasure to read a new author voice. And I look forward to reading more from this new and exciting author.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Book Review: The Revenge of the Pumpkins by Lacey Lane

The Revenge of the Pumpkins
Who says short stories cannot pack a punch? I listen to a lot of Radio horror serials, some short, some long, some too long - and in general, I enjoy them all. With Revenge of the Pumpkins by Lacey Lane, I was not sure what I would discover amongst its pages, but readers of this tale will read a delightfully concocted tale that happens over just one night of Halloween. 

Who would have thought pumpkins could feel something, but in this tale, you'll feel every cut! I was grinning and grimacing as the tale reached its conclusion. I'm all for reading highly detailed and crafted horror anthologies, but Revenge of the Pumpkins, in its few pages, hit harder than many I have read. 

Lacey Lane is a talented author with a Tarantino type style of wickedness in her storytelling. But you'll smile and enjoy every word as I did.

Probably not for kids, it is too gruesome. But later teens to adults will love it.