Tag: Fantasy

Book Review: Time’s Convert by Deborah Harkness

Time’s Convert
Series: All Souls #4
Author: Deborah Harkness
Published: June 25, 2019

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: February 20-March 1, 2022
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars     

Book Description:

On the battlefields of the American Revolution, Matthew de Clermont meets Marcus MacNeil, a young surgeon from Massachusetts, during a moment of political awakening when it seems that the world is on the brink of a brighter future. When Matthew offers him a chance at immortality and a new life free from the restraints of his puritanical upbringing, Marcus seizes the opportunity to become a vampire. But his transformation is not an easy one and the ancient traditions and responsibilities of the de Clermont family clash with Marcus’s deeply held beliefs in liberty, equality, and brotherhood.

Fast-forward to contemporary Paris, where Phoebe Taylor–the young employee at Sotheby’s whom Marcus has fallen for–is about to embark on her own journey to immortality. Though the modernized version of the process at first seems uncomplicated, the couple discovers that the challenges facing a human who wishes to be a vampire are no less formidable than they were in the eighteenth century. The shadows that Marcus believed he’d escaped centuries ago may return to haunt them both–forever.

A passionate love story and a fascinating exploration of the power of tradition and the possibilities not just for change but for revolution, Time’s Convert channels the supernatural world-building and slow-burning romance that made the All Souls Trilogy instant bestsellers to illuminate a new and vital moment in history, and a love affair that will bridge centuries.

Jessica’s Review:

I have not read the previous novels in the series, but I just finished the show Discovery of Witches which I enjoyed.  I’m not a huge fan of Matthew, but I was a big fan of Marcus and Phoebe in the show and I saw the fourth novel was Marcus’ backstory and Phoebe’s transition to vampirism… so I had to grab the audiobook!  I know I missed some things by not reading the previous books, but I was ok with that since I knew the story through the show.

As I mentioned, we get Marcus’ backstory in Time’s Convert along with present day events. Diana is also our narrator and we are updated with her and Matthew’s story along with their twins.  I really enjoyed hearing Marcus backstory, especially with what happened in New Orleans which was referenced on the show.  Seeing Phoebe going through her transformation as a modern woman was intriguing as she went along with ancient customs.  There are also some funny situations that occur. 

We also have more of Miriam in this novel as she has a certain importance in this novel.  I also liked Miriam in the show though she was just a minor character. We see more of who she is in Times Convert.

I still am not a fan of Matthew, who just comes off as an older version of Edward Cullen.  I just don’t see what made Diana fall for Matthew. On the show she goes from not liking him at all to an intense ‘insta-love’. I guess some women just ‘smell’ irresistible…

I do hope that Harkness chooses to continue the story of the de Clermont family as there is still so much story to tell! I personally want to see more with Marcus and Phoebe actually together.  And the continuing story doesn’t even begin to include the Congregation and all of those politics!

Times Convert is recommended. 

Kim has read the entire series and her reviews are here.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Novella Review: Prosper’s Demon by K.J. Parker

Prosper’s Demon
Series: Prospero’s Demon #1
Author: K.J. Parker
Published: January 28, 2020
112 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 3 stars

Book Description:

In a botched demonic extraction, they say the demon feels it ten times worse than the man. But they don’t die, and we do. Equilibrium.

The unnamed and morally questionable narrator is an exorcist with great follow-through and few doubts. His methods aren’t delicate but they’re undeniably effective: he’ll get the demon out — he just doesn’t particularly care what happens to the person.

Prosper of Schanz is a man of science, determined to raise the world’s first philosopher-king, reared according to the purest principles. Too bad he’s demonically possessed.

Kim’s Review:

This was an odd one. Once again, I felt like I was thrown into a story right in the middle and not told anything about what’s going on. I’d really like another book all about the history of these “exorcists” and why the demons do what they do, etc. But once I kinda, sorta had a sense of what was going on, the story was relatively clear. This book was definitely more character development driven as opposed to plot. It’s a simple story that got a little mired in complicated writing. It wasn’t the easiest book to read, but it’s also short. The overarching message of the book is actually easy to understand and appreciate, it just felt like a lot of work to get there. Overall, I’m glad I read it and I adore the cover!!!!!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK


Book Review: Lakesedge by Lyndall Clipstone

Series: World at the Lake’s Edge #1

Author: Lyndall Clipstone
Published: September 28, 2021
384 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

There are monsters in the world.

When Violeta Graceling arrives at haunted Lakesedge estate, she expects to find a monster. She knows the terrifying rumors about Rowan Sylvanan, who drowned his entire family when he was a boy. But neither the estate nor the monster are what they seem.

There are monsters in the woods.

As Leta falls for Rowan, she discovers he is bound to the Lord Under, the sinister death god lurking in the black waters of the lake. A creature to whom Leta is inexplicably drawn…

There’s a monster in the shadows, and now it knows my name.

Now, to save Rowan—and herself—Leta must confront the darkness in her past, including unraveling the mystery of her connection to the Lord Under.

Kim’s Review:

This book has been on my list for a while … I mean, that cover. Thankfully, the story does indeed live up to such a beautiful cover! While there are some flaws, the good outweighs them all. I think this would have made a better story if it were not actually YA. A lot of Leta’s and even Rowan’s problems could be chalked up to their ages. Teens are just stupid; we all know this. They don’t use their brains to work through problems, they simply let their emotions carry them into further complicating situations. That’s my main issue with this book. But other than that, I really enjoyed it!

Lakesedge is a gorgeous, rambling mansion that would fit into any gothic tale. Magic is weaved through in a way that makes me want to learn more and dive further into this world that Clipstone has created. But of course, as with my life, it ended on a cliffhanger and the next book doesn’t come out until September … so I’ll simply clench my teeth and wait until then so hopefully I can get the full picture!! Overall, this is a good one for any fan of gothic fantasy!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK