Rilloön: Dark Passage by Justin Grimmett is a seafaring sci-fi epic that is sure to leave readers on the edge of their seats. The story follows Rilloön, a young echniodyne living on the island of Chloelle on a diamond-shaped planet called Karoquil. The echniodyne are a scaly humanoid race living under the despotic rule of the cruel lect’veneel after being abandoned by their gods eons ago. After a vision calls into question everything the echniodyne know, Rilloön must make a dangerous journey into forbidden waters in hopes of finding a better life for her people. Along the way, she’ll face up against the deadly leviathans that inhabit her world’s oceans and the secrets and history that have been hidden from the echniodyne for generations.
Though science fiction on its surface, the worldbuilding appears to draw heavily from the fantasy and dystopian genres as well, coming together to form a setting with a little bit of something for everyone. Whether you want a tale of rediscovered lost technology or an action-packed adventure on the high seas, this book will not disappoint. It also features a strong female protagonist, something that can be a bit of a rarity in the genre. The author does a good job of avoiding some of the more negative tropes associated with female characters- while Rilloön is unquestionably competent and fierce, she’s also allowed to be vulnerable and, for lack of a better term, human, in a way that many a “strong female character” is sadly lacking.
While the worldbuilding is incredibly in-depth, I found some of the word choices odd. For example, as it takes place on an alien planet completely disconnected from our own, slang terms like “heebie-jeebies” felt a bit out of place. Other than that, the writing is incredible and readers are able to immerse themselves fully into the world created by Grimmett.
Rilloön: Dark Passage is a gripping sea story adventure novel that science fiction and fantasy novel readers will be able to enjoy as elements from both are present. The unique world the author has created is truly fascinating, and I look forward to spending more time there in future installments.
Pages: 460 | ASIN : B096ZK86JX
Posted in Book Reviews, Five Stars
Tags: adventure, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, dystopian, ebook, fiction, goodreads, indie author, Justin Grimmett, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, Rilloön: Dark Passage, sci fi, science fiction, sea stories, story, writer, writing
Jamey Fallon has lived a sheltered life on his family’s farm until he returns home one day to find his family brutally murdered. Jamey’s journey takes him to meet a young Count’s daughter, who somehow gets him kidnapped and dumped on a ship. Proving himself to be a capable seaman, Jamey earns his own vessel and begins his hunt for revenge. Raptor’s Revenge by Jim Malloy is a classic adventure novel about a young boy looking to avenge the death of his family.
This book reminds me of many old adventure novels like Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson and Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne. Stories that appear like fantastical adventures for young children but with adult themes to appeal to an older audience. This novel has many graphic descriptions and mature content, making it excellent for older young adults and adult readers.
The way the author chose to write this book is something akin to Shakespearean dialogue but blended with bits and pieces of modern English to make it more understandable, immersing the reader into the story.
The story begins with a murder which immediately captivates and shocks the reader. I was instantly intrigued and couldn’t put the book down. The author provides smooth transitions and gives plenty of backstories for the reader to fully understand each character’s motives. However, I was left wondering if the hurt, the hate, and the destruction would continue into the next book. If there is a sequel, I am looking forward to reading it to have my questions answered.
Raptor’s Revenge by Jim Malloy is an exciting action and adventure novel with historical elements that will captivate readers. I highly recommend this suspenseful book to readers looking for a good sea adventure that will take them on a journey of vengeance, romance, and betrayal.
Pages: 576 | ASIN : B09M8FFQGB
Posted in Book Reviews, Five Stars
Tags: Action and Adventure, adventure, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, ebook, fiction, goodreads, historical fiction, indie author, Jim Malloy, kindle, kobo, literature, mystery, nook, novel, Raptor's Revenge, read, reader, reading, romance, Sea Adventures, sea stories, story, writer, writing
A Genuine Curiosity
The Nightmare From World’s End is a science fiction thriller that begins when various people go missing along a river and a mythical squid may be to blame. What was the inspiration behind the idea for this book and how did that change as you were writing?
It was two things, actually. The first was an offhand comment by my wife one day while we were having lunch along the Hudson River. It was something out in the water that I took a grainy photo (zoom lens) and it came out looking like the classic ‘Loch Ness’ hoax photo. She looked at it and said: “Oh, that’s Ossie!”. “Indeed it is,” I replied, and so it started. The second was a massive crate I discovered along the shore of the Hudson after a big storm. It looked like it had been underwater for some time. That’s how it usually works – something I saw here, a comment there.
Along with that was a genuine curiosity about the American Indians that once populated this area, which go back at least 8,000 years. For me it’s a fluid process of researching and letting it inform the story as it develops. For example, I’d had the concept of the ‘Crazy Jack’ character for years, but dismissed the name as a product of me watching too many movies or TV shows. So, I initially wrote a scene where the American Indian anthropologist – Sarah Ramhorne – is saying as much. Then I discovered (to my shock) that in Munsee/Lenape mythology, there really is an enigmatic trickster named ‘Crazy Jack’. The joke was on me.
Native American folklore around the Hudson River area is a relevant theme within the book. What was the inspiration to infuse such rich culture in this novel?
So little is written about it yet aside from local names – Wappinger, Kitchawank, Weckuaesgeek, Sint Sinck – almost nothing remains of it here. It’s like a ghost hiding in plain sight. Many of the local tribes here were wiped out completely within a couple decades of first contact – we don’t even really know what they looked like. That naturally piqued my interest.
Is there anything that readers connect with in your story that surprises you?
People seem to really be into the characters in this one. That and the American Indian history. A frequent comment I get is: “Is all that stuff true?”. As far as I know, yes.
Your story makes mention of the ancient alien theory. Why did you include this in your novel?
Mainly it was by accident. I was at a local Indian pow-wow researching the story when I ran into an American Indian vendor who in a confidential tone started going off about ‘lost technology’, Atlantis and how the Indians ‘really’ got here in spaceships and had forgotten it. I immediately thought “This is too rich, I have to work this into the novel!” Then it became a running joke through the story: what if some real phenomena was going on to one side while everyone in the story is focused on the hoax phenomena happening on the other?
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be published?
Currently writing another novel for Severed Press titled The Lost World of Kharamu. It’s an updated take on Michael Crichton and Arthur Conan Doyle themes. It’s due out later this year – stay tuned.
Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website
In the aftermath of a major hurricane, a massive antique crate washes up on the shore of Raadsel Point. It’s smuggled cargo from the wreck of the Edmund Wood, an unregistered transport returning from a very unusual expedition. . . a ship that went down in the deepest and most dangerous part of the Hudson known as ‘The World’s End’. The nightmare creature it contains is about to unleash havoc on the citizens of the sleepy river village of Wyvern Falls and inadvertently draw to it a predator thought extinct a millennia ago. It will come down to two people to figure out what both these creatures are and how to stop them: expat CID Detective John Easton and American Indian anthropologist Sarah Ramhorne. The two of them will have to unravel local Indian myths, outmaneuver a corrupt mayor, a failing Ancient Astronaut Theorist TV show and an overzealous Green Folk Festival if they are to stand any chance of saving the day.
Posted in Interviews
Tags: action, adventure, amazon, amazon book, amazon books, amazon ebook, author, author interview, book, book review, books, ebook, ebooks, facebook, fantasy, fantasy book review, fiction, fighting, goodreads, horror, hudson river, indian, interview, kindle, kindle book, kindle ebook, literature, loch ness, monster, mystery, mythology, native american, novel, publishing, reading, review, reviews, robert stava, sci fi, science ficiton, science fiction, science fiction book review, sea monster, sea stories, stories, the nightmare from worlds end, thriller, twitter, urban fantasy, writing
Nightmare From World’s End
The Nightmare From World’s End, a science fiction thriller by Robert J. Stava, takes place in Wyvern Falls located along the Hudson River. The action begins when various people begin to go missing along the river. Members of the community are confused about the disappearances until it’s discovered that a giant squid-like creature is wreaking havoc, leaving carnage and even more questions in its wake. That’s not all to the story, however. There isn’t just one creature, there’s two!
A major player in the chaos is John Easton, a private detective, begins to unravel the history around the two creatures. Alongside him is Sarah Ramhorne, a strong-headed Native American archeologist who seems to hold some of the answers. Together they, along with others, try to unravel the story that surrounds these two mysterious creatures and put a stop to the death that has been taking place along the Hudson River.
This book is definitely a thriller that will have readers flipping through the pages wondering what will happen next. The author holds nothing back when he describes each vicious attack committed by the giant squid. Also, the tie-in with Native American culture within the book was handled well. It’s obvious that Robert J. Stava did his research on the tribes in the Hudson Valley area, and while the main purpose of his book was to thrill his readers with the tale of giant, murderous, perhaps ancient sea creatures, a secondary purpose was to provide them with a history of the area and enlighten the reader on Native American history.
Adding to this point, Native American folklore is very present and relevant within the piece. The leading lady, Sarah makes it a point to educate those that she encounters about the injustice done to the tribes within the area. The author doesn’t just place Sarah’s dialogue as disconnected rants within the piece; it all leads up to the climax the unfolds towards the end of the story. This is evident through the actions of Crazy Jack, a homeless Native American (and real folklore character), that contributes to the climax of the story by waking up the second creature that lives on the other end of the river from where the squid is attacking. Throughout the story, Crazy Jack is guided by the voices of his ancestors, telling him what must be done in order to bring an end to the death and carnage unfolding.
This book has a lot going on it in; sea creatures, Native American history and folklore, a private detective with a tragic past, ancient aliens, mind-reading, and even ghosts. You name it, and it’s probably in this book. At times, it was a bit too much, and a little disconnected for the reader. Especially, the bit on ancient aliens. It’s hard to see how Guillamo Del Tesler and his fanatical theories about the river monster being an ancient alien come into play. He’s brought to the area after Jennie Roderick, a half-witted archaeologist student, mails him some doctored petroglyphs that indicate an alien existence within the area. While this part of the plot is an entertaining aside to the major drama going on in the story, it was difficult to discern how it actually contributed to the overall plot, if at all.
Overall, the author tells a good story. The entwinement of sci-fi thriller with Native American folklore is unique and provides a sturdy foundation upon which to base the plot of the entire story. Regardless of a couple smaller story lines falling out of place within the book, it was an entertaining read.
Pages: 249 | ASIN: B01MQLLNM3
Posted in Book Reviews, Four Stars
Tags: action, adventure, alien, amazon, amazon books, ancient aliens, archeology, author, book, book review, books, detective, ebook, ebooks, fantasy, fantasy book review, fiction, fighting, folklore, ghosts, goodreads, horror, hudson river, indian, kindle, literature, mind reading, murder, mystery, native american, nightmare from world's end, novel, publishing, reading, review, reviews, robert stava, sci fi, science ficiton, science fiction, science fiction book review, science fiction thriller, sea stories, stories, thriller, urban fantasy, writing
Sicania Rising by Daniel Buckley is a work of fiction set in the ancient times of sea trade routes and praises to gods for their help in all matters of life. The story features several characters and a depth of detail sure to please any lover of historical fiction, especially of the Mediterranean variety.
One of the great rulers, Seidon, seeks to make headway on the islands of Sicania to further strengthen his hold on the trade routes of the Mediterranean. Meanwhile, his sons are hoping to be elected as the new rulers of the land but seem to have differing views on how to govern. Several other characters have roles to play as the power vacuum of the Mediterranean attracts all interested and worthy seafarers, creating a dynamic and intriguing story for the reader.
Particularly, I enjoyed the descriptions of adventuring and sea warfare. It was interesting to see how wars on the water would have taken place back then, and the author does a good job of putting the reader right in the middle of the battles to soak in all of the details he provides. Language issues do limit some of this, but the strength of the story still shines through the errors, leaving the reader with a solid understanding of what happened in each situation.
It’s unfortunate that the author doesn’t spend more time developing the characters, because they are interesting and beg to be fleshed out. The story has a tendency to jump into a bit of character development and dialogue, only to quickly fast forward through time with more exposition, leaving the reader’s investment in the characters lacking. Otherwise the historical accuracy of this book is the true gem of the story. If you are a fan of historical fiction you will enjoy the depth of detail delivered in this novel.
Sometimes the writing is difficult to follow as it often lacks structure and has inconsistent grammar. It’s a shame because there are glimpses of a great narrative hiding under all of the mistakes.
Overall, Mr. Buckley does a fantastic job of establishing a fictional conflict in a well-documented historical setting. However, his focus on historical facts and neglect of meaningful character development might leave fans of fiction wanting more. For those that enjoy nonfiction, historical sea battles and Mediterranean politics, this story is worth your time.
Pages: 235 | ASIN: B01M3X3YDG
Posted in Book Reviews, Three Stars
Tags: action, adventure, amazon, amazon books, author, book, book review, books, daniel buckley, ebook, ebooks, fantasy, fantasy book review, fiction, fighting, goodreads, historical, historical fiction, history, interview, kindle, literature, love, mediterranean, murder, mystery, novel, pirate, publishing, reading, review, reviews, sea stories, seafarer, ships, sicania rising, stories, thriller, war, writing