2022 clean-up.

With 2022 gone here is a clean up with short reviews of the last books that I read in 2022.

Pandora’s Box (The Heirs of Catalcysm, #2).
By Christopher G. Nuttall.
My rating ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ out of 5 stars.

It’s not just a box, it’s an ancient weapon capable of destroying entire cities.

Deep within the badlands, warped and twisted by tainted magic and weirdlings, a box was discovered by archaeologists, secret wisdom lost in the Cataclysm. Those who found it are selling it to the highest bidder. If it falls into the wrong hands, their fragile civilization’s uneasy peace will be shattered once and for all.

John, along with his fellow adventurers, are hired to steal this ancient artifact so it can be safely destroyed. But stealing it is one thing, surviving it is another.

Everyone is after them, and they’re on the run, a bounty on their head so large every mercenary, rogue, and even old friends are willing to risk death to claim it.

And nothing is quite what it seems.

Another good book by Christopher Nuttall. The first book in the series was a five star one. This one did not reach more than four stars. It is obviously still a good book though. I was a bit disappointed with the twist of John’s mentor back at the Academy potentially becoming a bad guy. I also think his team being surprised, beaten up etc. etc. a bit too much. Still, I like the story and hope there will be some magic development, especially for John, in the next installment.

Magi Edge (The Magi Saga, #4).
By Andrew Dobell.
My rating ⭐ ⭐ out of 5 stars.

I’m the chosen one?
Awesome, no one’s going to want to kill me now…. Right?

After the events on the Atoll, and the revelations about who she is, Amanda is left Reeling. Mr Black has gone missing, and someone is spreading rumors about her.

As these rumors spread, she becomes the focus of attention for Magi throughout America and the world. Some just want to meet her, others want to ruin her, but some want her dead.

With all this attention, and her new powers, Amanda struggles to stay humble.
Amanda must overcome her hubris and her enemies before she loses her friends, and maybe her life.

This was a rather substandard book unfortunately. I really like the overall story arc but the implementation is unfortunately littered with unnecessary wet dreams and woke rubbish. Also, stop beating the dead nazi horse. Use some real and present enemies like the communists or other real life enemies of today.

Swamp Spook (A Miss Fortune Mystery, #13).
By Jana Deleon.
My rating ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ out of 5 stars.

When black cats roam, and spooks are seen,
Come celebrate, it’s Halloween.

Sinful, Louisiana, really knows how to throw a party, and it goes all out for Halloween. The weeklong celebration kicks off with a maze of horror in the park built of hay bales. And Fortune has the perfect assignment—the executioner. Her scene comes complete with a head block, a hatchet, and a fake body with removable head. It’s the perfect setup…for a crime.

When Fortune returns from break and realizes the body in her scene is a real one and not the prop, she knows trouble is coming. Before she can shake a broomstick, Celia Arceneaux has raised the alarm and the state police show up to take over the investigation. With Carter on the sidelines and Fortune the prime suspect, Swamp Team 3 sets out to catch a real monster.

This was another fun read in the series. After the first books being a bit unbalanced they have now hit a good balance between mystery and comedy. Fortune is more professional and the on/off rubbish with Carter is done and over with. This Cecilia Arceneaux character is still annoying as hell but at least she is no longer the Mayor. A good read for a change of pace between my normal reading.

A Tempered Warrior (The Milesian Accord, #2).
By Jon R. Osborne.
My rating ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ out of 5 stars.

Centuries ago, the followers of the new gods defeated the old gods, and the folk of legend were banished from the world. With their departure, magic faded from the land. However, the Milesian Accords provided for a new challenge, and its time rapidly approaches.

The descendant of the druid who participated in the original challenge, Liam Knox, must forge the sword for the Champion to wield, and write the next set of Accords. Time is running out, though, and the minions of the new gods will stop at nothing to ensure he fails in his tasks.

The descendent of the legendary hero Cu Chulainn, Erin Donnelly, has gone to Dunos Scaith, a fortress out of time and space, to train for the Challenge to come. Interruptions and distractions abound, though, including the potential for new love…and she is being hunted as well.

Both Druid and Champion are running out of time as the Challenge approaches—a challenge that could end the world as we know it—and neither is likely to be ready in time. They must trust in each other and their friends…but what if that trust is misplaced?

As with the previous book this is a good story but a fairly standard urban fantasy implementation. Overall the characters are good and the writing decent. The behavior of Erin with respect to her love life and Liam is really annoying though. It is a decent enough read but nothing really to write home about. It not for the story itself this one would have ended up on the not-to-be-continued shelf.

Judgement of Mars (Starship’s Mage, #5).
By Glynn Stewart.
My rating ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ out of 5 stars.

A war fought in the shadows
A conspiracy shattered in fire
A moment of weakness…

When politics are played for blood.

The destruction of the secret archive of the Royal Order of Keepers on Mars has left Damien Montgomery, Hand of the Mage-King, with his enemies defeated, his lover dead—and his questions unanswered.

When he seeks out the remaining Keepers for answers, he discovers only violence and death in their strongholds. Someone else is hunting down the survivors to make sure they never answer Damien’s questions—or anyone else’s.

As a wave of murder sweeps Mars and the consequences of the Keepers’ conspiracy sink home, Damien is summoned before the Council of the Protectorate to answer for the deaths of two other Hands. In the political heart of the Protectorate of Mars, he finds he may be forced to choose between honoring the oaths he swore and preserving the survival of the Protectorate itself!

This was not the best installment in the series but it is still a really good book. The main reason I say this one was not the best in the series is that the conspiracy plot from the previous book continues and the author throws in a bunch of dumbass politicians from this Council of the Protectorate. I really did not like that even though they got their political asses kicked in the end. I also did not at all like the events that lead to Damien being (temporarily?) crippled and loosing some of his magic. I almost took a star off for that and I really hope the author corrects this in the next book. Apart from that this is good kick-ass science fiction/fantasy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s