Review: The Portal Prophesies A Halloween Curse

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A Halloween Curse is the second book in the Portal Prophecy series by C.A. King. This is a fantasy series for YA/NA readers.

This is an action packed story with decent pacing and interesting characters. The story is quite twisty and the characters are complex, even the bad guys.

There is a large cast of characters of varying magical abilities from a variety of worlds or dimensions. Sometimes it is hard to keep track of who they are and what they can do because you often go several chapters without hearing from someone.

The descriptions are good, and the imagery and detail is fantastic. The author has put a lot of thought into the double meanings and vague possibilities of all her prophesies, curses, and warnings.

I worry that some of her characters are becoming over-powered and that it may cause plot-failings later in the series but for now the team continues to grow in strength and numbers while the problems facing them grow in complexity. Also, there is tension between the members of the group and quite often the girls are frustrated by people not taking them seriously.

Over all I’m impressed with the series and the scope of this fictional world.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

World of Azglen Book Review

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World of Azglen is the first book in the Full Moon Series written by Patricia Mattern and JC Estall. Here is the book’s description from Amazon.

Charley Rabbit is a mentally disabled young man who lives quietly with his widowed mother Mitzi in the American Midwest-but not for long! Charley develops a rapid intellectual growth spurt after being bitten by a vampire. Fressenda and her fraternal twin brothers Cass (Castor) and Lux (Pollux) take an interest in Charley and Mitzi and become part of their extended family, but Mitzi is wary and senses that the changes in Charley may be part of something mysterious,dark and sinister. In the meantime she is offered something she didn’t believe was possible-a clandestine relationship with a younger , and incidentally immortal, male.

The ensuing connection that Charley and his mom develop with V-net vampires (,a brilliantly organized organization that has piggybacked on the existing infrastructure in the U.S), an ancient family history and a dangerous and wily adversary, the Vampire Lord Adrastos puts both their lives and their new relationships at risk and takes them to some of the most remote locales on the planet.

I found this to be a very quick read and overall the book felt like an extended introduction to characters, politics, and the vampire rules/powers of this author’s unique universe. As this is book one in a series that’s understandable. There were some twists I really enjoyed – like how flying was possible by impractical because of modern technology, the portal system, and Charley’s “rapid intellectual growth spurt”. I also enjoyed the main cast of characters: Mitzi, Charley, Fress, Cass, and Lux. I think my favourite though was the minor character, Byron.

The main struggle that is supposed to drive this book is hinted at in the brilliantly written prologue but I found the execution of the build-up and climax to be weak. No, that’s being too harsh. Let me explain a little.

When Mitzi undergoes her traumatic experience she reacts in unexpected ways and the author only suggests that “Mitzi felt that she had been hypnotized somehow, maybe” (to paraphrase). I was really hoping for more on this, a detail about how she had been drugged by the wet nurse, or how Adrastos hypnotizes her, or something.

I was VERY impressed with the outcome of the fight scene, even if the action felt a little choppy. The way Charley wins is unique and a wonderful twist. This is a traditional underdog learns to fight too quickly and too well sort of story – Charley struggles, a lot, in this fight and I liked that since he was the newer vampire and the weaker fighter.

While Byron was my favourite, the other men are hot and sexy and come across as genuine. I found the other back-up characters hard to distinguish (but I did read this novel with a head cold) but the main cast was fully realized and easy to tell apart.

The numbers don’t lie and based on the Full Moon Series’ fan base and status on Amazon’s sell lists Patricia Mattern has hit on a success with this series. She’s producing something that a lot of people like. So I will highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a light, quick, paranormal romance.

Look her up on Facebook and Amazon. There are a lot of books in this series and I’m looking forward to reading and reviewing all of them.

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