book review, review

The Enchantress

After my last dabble in fantasy, I needed a pallet cleanser with a new witch-like woman to bring some magic into my bookshelf. Enter The Enchantress by James Maxwell, The Evermen Saga Book 1.

Heat Level:❤️❤️

Genre: New Adult Fantasy/Adventure

Overall Rating: 4/6 Glass Slippers

Ella and Miro are orphaned siblings, raised in a world governed by runes, a substance that has the power to both kill and create, an an emperor. While Ella goes to school to become an Enchantress and learn how to create the simplest of spells and cast the ones which might win the ever-present war, Miro trains to be a Blade Singer, the protectors of the realm. As they work on their craft, they begin to wonder the truth about their parents and where they came from.

Each country has a lexicon, a book of spells and runes that govern each country, which are almost constantly at war. Some live by fire and rock, others use theirs to create skyscrapers and walls. When the one in Ella’s is stolen, the newly made Enchantress needs to find the book and renew the magic within before the spells in her country fade and her people fall at the mercy of the emperor’s troops. Meanwhile, Miro roses through the ranks as his superiors either fall in battle or are taken over to the dark side.

They separately travel their world, gaining her skills, new allies, and learning more about the runes within the lexicons, and their own pasts…while trying to stay alive. This book was like Game of Thrones Jr. it had the same world building effect, but no dragons as of yet, and had a new kind of rune magic I honestly had never seen in a book before. The magic wasn’t all encompassing, it had time limits and blind spots that made it so no one was an all-powerful Enchanter or Enchantress. Their world was a delicate one that constantly needed to have its magic renewed and the ones on the edge of society that lived entirely without runes were seen as weak, although sometimes they were the strongest of all.

The only flaws I found with this book were that the twists were pretty predictable and both siblings were instant masters of their craft. Like a college student fresh outta class is going to be the president of Apple? Well, that’s what happened to Ella. And is a simple private in the Army gonna be made a General in a matter of months? Miro was. That’s the thing with some YA and NA books. The stars are usually the chosen one, the only person who can save the human race, the hero of the Hunger Games. Still, it was nice to see a male and female duo that weren’t romantically involved in saving the word and got matching word counts from both POVs.

book review, review

Dark Witch

I’be only read a few Nora Roberts books in my life, but the title Dark Witch, book one in The Cousins O’Dwyer Trilogy, caught my eye. I’m a sucker for witchcraft and immediately began reading.

Genre: Contemporary Adventure Romance

Heat Level: ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Overall Rating: 3/6 Glass Slippers

The book opens with the tale of Sorcha, the first dark witch. Her husband is off fighting while she cares for home and hearth in ancient Ireland. She protects her children and forest cabin from an evil sorcerer named Cabhan with the help of magic. He wants her power and as he gets closer to his goal, Sorcha makes the ultimate sacrifice and pours her magic into her three children, knowing that they and their descendants may have to defeat Cabhan once and for all.

Generations later, an Irish-American woman named Iona sells her worldly possessions and moves to Ireland to find herself. She seeks out her distant cousins, who welcome her with open arms. In the span of a few days she gets a home with them, a job at a horse stable that she loves, and the truth about who she is. Iona learns that she tales her grandmother would tell her of magic are true and her cousins help her to hone her powers as Cabhan grows stronger. He knows the three O’Dwyers are once again together and he wants to claim their magic for his own.

On top of learning witchcraft, Iona makes friends and a life for herself in Ireland. She also meets a man, Boyle, who is not only the rugged Irish cowboy she craves, but also her boss. While they fall into each others arms, dating a witch is hard work, even for a man who has been raised with the knowledge that magic is real.

Okay. So, I really wanted to love this book. I immediately loved Sorcha and wanted to know more about her. How did she get her powers? Why did she live in the woods while the people at the castle welcomed her magic? She was vibrant, strong, and I wanted to read her life’s story. But instead, I got Iona.

A self-proclaimed blabbermouth, Iona was a constant over sharer who would meet someone one minute and tell them her sexual history and daddy issues the next. While I assume readers are meant to find her dramatics and inability to listen to such direction as, “meditate and learn to control your powers so you can actually not die when you go exploring in the dangerous places we told you not to go to,” relatable, I found her annoying. At times, I wished Cabhan would just eat her, or whatever he wanted to do, or just scare her a bit more so she would slow her roll and learn how to not be an idiot.

Besides the fact that every other character but Iona was fun, lovable, vivacious, and actually someone I’d want to read about, I thought this book was not not as good as the early Nora Roberts I have read. For example, the plot holes surprised me. The O’Dwyers used their magic and brewed potions openly, but the government hadn’t stepped in to study them in a lab? The fact that no one seemed to care that magic was real made even Harry Potter seem more realistic. And where has Cabhan been all this time? Sitting at home watching reruns of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, waiting for Iona instead of just picking the O’Dwyers off one by one years before. It made the crux of the story seem rushed and ignored.

At some points, I was even reminded of other stories she’s written, as if certain parts were recycled for Iona’s story. Overall, it isn’t something I’d read again and I’d only go on to book two since Iona is not the star. But I’m in no rush to continue the tale of the O’Dwyer cousins and can not recommend this book.