The Rules of the Game – Joseph Lallo

Currently the fourth story in the ‘The Book of Deacon’ series.

When i first read ‘The Book of Deacon’ several years ago, this short story wasn’t available and the difference is very noticeable when you go straight into ‘The Book of Deacon’ from this short: it’s a much better beginning.   So, IMHO, a must read for anyone before starting ‘The Book of Deacon’.

As with ‘The Rise of the Red Shadow’ this story also tells us of one of the ‘Chosen’ prior to the events in the main story.   It also does dragons really well, and any book that does dragons really well is a great book.   We liked this one very much.

There are two ways i know to get a copy, one is to sign up to Joseph’s newsletter and you’ll get it for free, the other is by buying the ‘Lone Wolf Anthology’.

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Currently Reading

The Book of Deacon – Joseph R. Lallo

And it’s onto the fifth book of this enthralling series.

Also available in ‘The Book of Deacon Anthology’ and ‘Quest’

Review to follow.

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Entwell Origins: Ayna – Joseph R. Lallo

A little novella about a fairy named Ayna set in ‘The Book of Deacon’ series.

It covers a few aspects of Entwell that aren’t dealt with in the main story: like how fairies are captured and used as compasses to guide people through ‘The Cave of the Beast’.   Mostly, it does this through a young fairy named Ayna who has different ideas on what a fairy should aspire to once they reach Entwell.

I read the copy in ‘The Book of Deacon Anthology’ and while it’s a nice little story i felt this had a few too many typos which become detracting at times.   Maybe someone needs to go back and correct all these little annoying errors and put out an update.   But, for now, it’s still worth a read to add a bit more to ones knowledge of Entwell and its inhabitants.

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Seeking the Shadow – Joseph R. Lallo

This little short follows on directly after ‘The Rise of the Red Shadow’.   Someone is hunting Lain — again — and is closing in rapidly.

A really good little short.   Not really necessary to enjoy the main series, but absolutely essential if you enjoy the main series.

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The Rise of the Red Shadow – Joseph R. Lallo

At the time of writing this is the very first book in the ‘Book of Deacon’ series, and what a book.

Essentially, it’s just an introduction to one of the series’ main characters, Lain, aka, The Red Shadow.

Lain is a kind of human/fox hybrid creature known as a Malthrope: which is where all his problems begin.   Malthropes are feared, hated, despised, distrusted and hunted to near extinction by almost everyone, and it’s only by pure chance that Lain is not killed when he is captured as a kit after his mother is killed.   But it’s a chance with a slight problem: he’s being kept alive as a slave until he’s big enough for his tail to reach to the required length for his owner to claim the bounty on it.   And if that’s not enough, as a slave he is forced to work with the other slaves who all hate, distrust and despise him and are more than eager to let him know — apart from one old blind slave who seems to have different ideas about him.

Although this is only an introduction to Lain, it’s over 400 pages long and is a complete story in its own right; so if all you want is a taster for the rest of the series, it’s a great book to taste.

Action packed, lots of other great characters coming in and out of the story, twists and turns, engrossing, enjoyable.   Lain is a character you really want to root for.

This book can also be found in ‘The Book of Deacon Anthology’.

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Heartless – Marissa Meyer

Another one for the ‘Alice and Wonderland’ collection.

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Wings of Hope – Pippa Dacosta

A free ebook available when you sign up for Pippa’s mailing list.

As it was free i thought i’d throw it on ‘The Pile’ and give it a go before i decide to collect the rest of the series.   No harm in trying.

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American Gods – Neil Gaiman

I had a quick look at the TV show and very quickly decided that i wanted to read the book instead.   Since then i’ve been wanting this for it to be put on sale and it finally appeared at 99p.   So that’s another great looking book added to ‘The Pile’.

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Hannah Green and Her Unfeasibly Mundane Existence – Michael Marshall Smith

I noticed this book in the ’12 Days of Kindle’ sale that Amazon were having for the 2018 winter hols and it made me think of a friend named Hannah who spends most of her work days in a rather mundane looking cupboard (yes, actually in a cupboard), and the title of this book instantly made me think of her.   And so, with me being hooked on the title, and also suitably impressed by the cover art, i had a quick look at the reviews and they seemed rather positive as well — and at £1.49 one can’t really go wrong.   And so, with all four check boxes (cover, title, reviews and price) ticked, i went ahead and bought the book.

Of course, i had to go and tell Hannah about my fiendishly brilliant book purchase, while she was at work, sat in her cupboard.   I know, i’m bad, but it put a smile and a giggle on Hannah’s face.

So, you’re probably wondering, when’s he gonna get onto talking about the actual story and doing an actual review?   Like, was it any good?   Was it worth £1.49?   Did it come up to the standard of the cover and the title?   Was Hannah’s existence, really, ‘unfeasibly mundane’?

The answer to all the above, is yes. More than yes, actually.

It was brilliant, it was worth more than £1.49, it surpassed its cover and certainly matched its title, as while Hannah starts out with quite a feasibly mundane existence, of which she wasn’t too impressed although she did enjoy some of it, it soon begins to spiral rapidly into complete unfeasibility of mundaneness when Hannah’s parents split up and she goes to stay with her granddad for a couple of weeks and the devil himself turns up at granddad’s house with an accident imp in tow because… well, you’ll just have to read it and find out for yourself.

I know what you’re thining.   You’re thinking it all sounds incredibly silly, ‘the devil himself and an accident imp’?   But it isn’t at all silly, there’s a real underlying serious side to this book.   It’s about the stories of our lives, who gets to write them, who we’re in them with and who we write them with — which would be incredibly dull and tedious if you just wrote a philosophy PHD thesis on the topic, but Michael manages to make the points he wants to make while packaging it all up in an a story that is quite giggle-icious.

I would also add that i think it’s very suitable for both adults (especially parents) and teens alike and, IMHO, speaks incredibly well to each about the other — something for us all to learn.

So yes, at the end of the tale, i can honestly say that it’s a really wonderful book that i’m very glad to have discovered (thank you Hannah and your cupboard ), with a nice easy flowing style that just lets you fall inside the book and enjoy a story about the stories of our lives.

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