Urban fantasy usually lends itself pretty well to the audiobook format, so I expected to have a nice experience with Dark Hope. For the most part, my expectations were met. It’s a good fantasy story that I found enjoyable enough so although I took a couple of breaks from it, I didn’t abandon it and listened till the end. If you’re a UF fan, this could be a series worth getting into.
I guess it gets harder and harder for authors to come up with original paranormal fantasy stories as the genre becomes more saturated. Yet somehow, Christine Amsden manages to whip up an interesting magical fantasy world that combines the already well established tropes in an unusual and appealing way. Powerful magical families struggling for power, vampires hiding in plain sight and wrecking havoc in an otherwise relatively (para)normal town and amidst of it all – Cassie Scot, the ingifted sorcerers’ daughter trying to figure out life without her parents hanging over her shoulder.
Graeme Reynolds has been writing for a few years now (since 2008 to be exact) and has had more than thirty short stories published in various online magazines and anthologies. In 2011 his first novel, High Moor, was published.
What is High Moor about
If you didn’t guess from the cover, High Moor is a book about werewolves. What you get from the blurb doesn’t do the story justice and makes it look like just another urban fantasy/paranormal mind candy novel. The plot is actually fairly complex for a werewolf story and there are some nice twists and turns. Two of the main characters, John Simpson and Steven Wilkinson have to deal with a dangerous werewolf. That much we get even from the book blurb. There’s much more to it, though. This part of the plot unfolds halfway into the book. Before that there’s some solid character building and we see John as a child living through some horrible events and a little younger version of police officer Steven Wilkinson being hit by the reality that werewolves exist. We get to know them quite well and develop a solid relationship with them which makes the final moments of the book even more exciting.
Hounded is the first audiobook in The Iron Druid Chronicles series which is an urban fantasy by the relatively new author Kevin Hearne. We’re presented with a story that follows the magical adventures of the world’s last druid Atticus in modern day Arizona.
Forget about all those silly old men in robes with long white beards. Atticus definitely doesn’t fit in that stereotype, being a 21 year old youngster with red hair, a goatee and the palest skin you’re ever seen. One might think that Arizona won’t be the first choice for a place of residence for someone like him, because you know, it’s constantly sunny and hot and dessert-y. He, however has a few good reasons for choosing the USA South. The Celtic god of love Aenghus Og is after him and not because he has deep feelings for Atticus but because he’s convinced that the druid stole a magical sword that belongs to him. It turns out that Arizona is as far away from the fae gateways to the Old World which makes it difficult for the gods and their minions to catch him by surprise.