Paranormal

book review | December with Dracula 5 | The Cambion Cycle by John G. Hartness | Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter 5-8

the cambion cycle quincy harker john g hartness dracember december with draculaAuthor: John G. Hartness
Title: The Cambion Cycle
Series: Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter 5-8
Genre: Urban Fantasy; Vampires
Pages: 394
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

I couldn’t resist. Instantly grabbed The Cambion Cycle: Year Two by John G. Hartness, second book in Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter series. Other series will just have to wait. And no, I regret nothing either.

About the Book: Someone is hunting down people with supernatural blood in their veins, specifically those whose one parent was either an angel, or a demon. They brutally kill them, and leave Harker a message. A message out of blood, guts, and remnants of soul. And, worst of all is that Harker has already seen all this before. Back then having stopped it through sheer luck…

My Opinion: Author has a great, smooth writing style where between high-strung action there’s moments of respite and planning. Characters don’t loiter about, taking more time talking than doing things. Everything’s in very, very good balance, I just can’t stress that enough. Additionally I noticed there’s these… Little repeated things, sentences, jokes. Not repeated per page, but from another book, another story told before. This created a lovely little dynamic, where it almost feels like the reader and the author have inside jokes now. Again, takes balance to get there. Lots of humor, unbelievably colorful epithets and insults, well written action and protagonists. The only thing I had a small issue with were side characters who were not so small as to warrant such template-writing.

A firm 4 out of 5. And how do I resist taking third one right now…

Categories: 4-5, Books of Occult, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Funny!, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, dark fantasy, demons, dracember, Fantasy Books, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, Themes, urban fantasy, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | December with Dracula 4 | Quincy Harker: Year One by John G. Hartness | Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter 1-4

quincy harker demon hunter year one john g harness dracember december with dracula night mode reading nosferatu readsAuthor: John G. Hartness
Title: Quincy Harker: Year One
Series: Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter 1-4
Genre: Urban Fantasy; Vampires
Pages: 384
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter series, written by John G. Hartness, is best read in these omnibuses. Then you’ll be absolutely certain you’re reading them in appropriate, chronological order. Don’t ask why I mention this now, now that I’ve read Quincy Harker: Year One, a 1-4 books omnibus.

About the Book: Quincy’s parents were Mina and Jonathan Harkers who, one way or another, were affected by Vlad Dracula himself. This means that Quincy, while not a vampire, now lives in the age of cell phones and security cameras, and calls Dracula his uncle. He works as a demon hunter, one way or another banishing the things that go bump in the night, bumping them back, as he puts it. But whether it’s because being an anomaly that he is – he attracted attention of said beings, or because they just pissed him off – remains unknown. After all, living this long means he saw the worst humanity has to dish out. And the darkness those acts pull into the world.

In this book Quincy starts officially working with officially nonexistent paranormal activity division. And while at first that sounds like great fun – finally someone to clean the records, the blood, and the bodies – it turns out they’re lacking in the supernatural department. So there he is, as before, against a few of Apocalypse Horsemen, Death itself, Hell’s Lieutenants, and all kinds of other crap. Must be Tuesday.

My Opinion: Great humor, colorful epithets and unmatched vocabulary, incredible fights with creatures from the depths of hell, whose sharp tongues are only matched by their damned swords, Vlad the Impaler himself going medieval or, worse, getting all parental, a guardian angel who can barely keep up with this bad influence of a protagonist, and many other absolutely glorious things. Well written, easy to absorb, and even easier to read. The only minus is that some prominent characters follow a very clear pattern that makes their acts, events around them, answers, and dialogues – overly predictable. Occasional curveball would’ve made this beyond perfect.

A very fine read, solid 4 out of 5.

Categories: 4-5, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, demons, dracember, ghosts, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, Themes, urban fantasy, vampires, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | The Bookshop from Hell by David Haynes

bookshop from hell y david haynes book review read like a villain horror night mode reading nosferatu readsAuthor: David Haynes
Title: The Bookshop from Hell
Series: –
Genre: Horror; Paranormal
Pages: 227
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

Forget what I was looking for originally when I discovered The Bookshop from Hell by David Haynes, and won’t likely ever remember now. But this one sounded too intriguing to pass.

About the Book: A new bookshop opens in a small, relatively peaceful town, where a door left unlocked wasn’t a safety hazard. Strange one, with an older gentleman running it, seemingly no electricity, and rarely even open. Yet, despite all that, soon townspeople find themselves with a book in their hands, gifted to them, one they cannot put down, for it’s a tale tailored just for them, a tale that has all the answers…

My Opinion: It’s a very classic kind of a tale: some kind of paranormal thing rolls into a very tidy town, and starts pulling and twisting the darkest strings, causing mass hysteria, mayhem, murder. While it might feel dull reading it, there’s value in the books that aren’t boring, books where you can just sit down and relax, simply read, not thinking what’s ahead, not keeping tabs, or trying to connect the pieces together. So, all in all, pretty good for what it is.

A firm 4 out of 5

Categories: 4-5, Books of Occult, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Other Fiction, Books: Supernatural, Dark Books, Mystery Books, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, Thriller Books, urban fantasy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Bridge of Souls by V.E. Schwab | Cassidy Blake 3

cassidy blake bridge of souls victoria schwab v.e. schwab book review knygos apzvalgaAuthor: V.E. Schwab
Title: Bridge of Souls
Series: Cassidy Blake
Genre: Urban Fantasy; Paranormal
Pages: 304
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

It’s almost October, the only month in Autumn that I do enjoy. When every corner of the internet floods with reviews of all things spooky, pumpkin, horror, and gloom. And since the vibe’s already there, I think I’ll call the start of it today, with Bridge of Souls by V.E. Schwab, third book in Cassidy Blake series.

About the Book: Cassidy’s family takes their show on paranormal activities to New Orleans, where they’ll seek supernatural. Sadly for Cassidy, she doesn’t need to seek them. They find her. Sometimes they need her help. Other times they just want to do their things, and she’s the one who gets in the way, with the unasked for, but definitely needed help. But this time one found her to exert a punishment for something the girl stole from beyond…

My Opinion: It took two books and half a world for some dark spirit to figure out Cassidy owes them one. Accountants in the beyond aren’t great, I guess. Additionally, upon finding her, they lose her to a point where girl and her friend had to try pretty hard to get their attention on themselves again. Felt a bit like an accidental plot hole, or not a fully thought through idea. I would’ve rather read New Orleans related lore, a place famous for Voodoo magic, vampires, and other things. 

So far this is the weakest in the series, gets a 3 out of 5 from me.

victoria schwab bridge of souls book review night mode reading

Categories: 3-5, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, ghosts, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, urban fantasy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

kapiniu knyga the graveyard book neil gaiman knygos apzvalga book reviewAuthor: Neil Gaiman
Title: The Graveyard Book
Series: –
Genre: Urban Fantasy; Paranormal
Pages: 312
Rate: 5/5 | Goodreads

Great are the days when reading is so easy. Finished The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, a wonder and incredibly unique piece of entertainment.

About the Book: Jack of all trades has made a mistake. He has hunted down a family, murdered them before they even realized they’re dying, but their littlest babe has slipped away from the trap, and disappeared. The only consolation Jack has is that the child was likely helped by powers greater and older than those he is serving. Powers who took the babe in, adopted him, named him Nobody to protect, and began doing their best raising a living, breathing person in a graveyard full of strangest inhabitants.

My Opinion: A slightly scary and deeply captivating book. Reads like a string of short stories, as Nobody goes through all kinds of adventures: from learning his letters by reading tombstones, to escaping ghoul realm; from going on an adventure to explore the oldest burial mound in the vicinity, place no one ever left, to going to high school. It’s intense, and so incredibly well written that reading the entirety of it was a breeze. I highly recommend it.

Great book, especially with October at hand. Solid 5 out of 5.

neil gaiman graveyard book kapiniu knyga night mode reading

Categories: 5-5, Books of Occult, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, ghosts, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, urban fantasy, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Clan Novel: Gangrel by Gherbod Fleming | Vampire The Masquerade: Clan Novel 3

clan novel gangrel gherbod fleming book reviewAuthor: Gherbod Fleming
Title: Clan Novel: Gangrel
Series: Vampire the Masquerade: Clan Novel 3
Genre: Urban Fantasy; Vampires
Pages: 270
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

Finished Clan Novel: Gangrel by Gherbod Fleming, third book in Vampire the Masquerade: Clan Novel series, and the last one I own in a physical copy. Gangrels aren’t my favorite clan, but they aren’t my least favorite either. For better or worse, this book didn’t change my opinion either way.

About the Book: Ramona and her two friends barely escape with their unlives, just to end up in a city thriving with life, where death yet again breathes down their necks. From their own kind, to even worse of their kind, the Sabbat. Not least of their problems is Ramona herself, as she soon finds herself obsessing over a mortal teenage girl that is like a highway to absolute hell, and she’s taking more than just herself for a ride on it.

My Opinion: Saying someone needs to earn your respect implies your respect is worth earning. I, personally, believe one can only ever lose respect. And so, Ramona’s arrogance rubbed me the wrong way from the start. Slight to mediocre spoilers ahead, no major plot twists, even though I feel like there weren’t any to begin with: She, and sometimes the other clan-kin of hers, treated one another, friends, acquaintances, like trash, acting respectfully to a degree only towards those whom they deemed in a position to help, and quickly turned their attitude if that proved to be wrong. She’d ask a question, and tell you to shup up before you finished answering, all while not only contributing nothing useful to the overall topic, but additionally misleading her kin with, yet again, arrogant assumption she knew what she was saying, despite having evidence to the contrary, or omitting the truth outright, which likely was the main contributor to majority of deaths. All due to obsession over a mortal teenage girl she and another vampire vied over to a point where they broke her family and her too, for no apparent reason at all. No, really, at the end it was stated the girl really didn’t mean anything.

This plot hole that drove majority of the plot isn’t the only one. Writing, in general, was poor, with a lot of empty descriptors that added nothing to otherwise action-based story-telling. My favorite of this action, though, was the villain’s, just sitting for two or three nights in an empty cave, doing absolutely nothing until they all prepared for a visitation.

So, all in all, a 2 out of 5, for both the writing, and level of story. Strange are the people who think their way of life is the correct one.

gangrel vampyru maskaradas vampire the masquerade

Categories: 2-5, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: LGBT, Books: Supernatural, LGBTQ+ Books, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, urban fantasy, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | A Matter of Taste by Fred Saberhagen | Dracula 6

Fred Saberhagen a matter of taste dracula book reviewAuthor: Fred Saberhagen
Title: A Matter of Taste
Series: Dracula 6
Genre: Vampires; Dracula
Pages: 288
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

The last book of Dracember, and this year. “A Matter of Taste” by Fred Saberhagen, sixth in his Dracula series. Decent, as series went, so far.

About the Book: Vengeance driven past darkens Vlad Dracula’s door, in a form of a once slighted Borgias, and their poisons. He has survived them once. Will he be able to survive them again, all while protecting his guests, and neighbors?…

My Opinion: Okay, so at least the story wasn’t a complete random mix of events. We got some more of Vlad Dracula’s past, specifically how he died, what he did after, and how he ended up before the Borgias. It’s not the best, so the greatest praise I can give it – not as bad as the previous two or three books in the series. Some motives keep maddeningly repeating, other times it’s so dull it gets hard to read.

Well, ending a year with a mediocre note is better than a low one anyway, right? A 3 out of 5.

Categories: 3-5, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, urban fantasy, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Dominion by Fred Saberhagen | Dracula 5

dominion fred saberhagen book reviewAuthor: Fred Saberhagen
Title: Dominion
Series: Dracula 5
Genre: Vampires; Dracula
Pages: 320
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

Finished “Dominion” by Fred Saberhagen, fifth book in the Dracula series. So far these books seem to be the most random, dull events, with Dracula solving issues in the sidelines.

About the Book: There was once a powerful sword, one we might know best as the Excalibur. But it was hidden away. And now it’s the time to find it, now there’s power enough, there’s knowledge enough… A whole horde of supernaturals scurry in attempts to find it, Vlad Dracula among them.

My Opinion: Time traveling Dracula who works with a cop, and searches for the Arthurian Legend, all while some wicked woman breeds humans together to create a more powerful being. Or at least have victims at hand. Every more interesting topic was dropped, instead you get to read about some perverts with their cousins or sisters. There’s nothing to even say about character writing.

I really hope I can suffer through whole series if it continues like this. A 2 out of 5.

Categories: 2-5, Books of Occult, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, urban fantasy, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | An Old Friend of the Family by Fred Saberhagen | Dracula 3

an old friend of the family fred saberhagen book reviewAuthor: Fred Saberhagen
Title: An Old Friend of the Family
Series: Dracula 3
Genre: Vampire books; Paranormal literature
Pages: 208
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

Alright. Read “An Old Friend of the Family” by Fred Saberhagen, third book in his Dracula Tape series. It’s a bit concerning how quickly these are getting worse…

About the Book: Family of Mina’s descendants has a book, a spell, a summoning of sorts, promising a help of a friend. It changes hands with a promise to never use it unless the need is truly immeasurable, up until Southerland family gets haunted by tragedy. Their eldest daughter dies, their youngest son – disappears… The only question is whether the help that’ll come will be worth the trouble family will sink into.

My Opinion: A very weak story. Powerful vampire wants to destroy Dracula’s rule, his laws, have vampires live freely, feed however they please. After chapters and chapters of her trying to paint Dracula as a villain, while her, and her little gang of lackeys behave like scum themselves, she just goes and accepts a possibility of good but improbable news. Meantime all the elder vampires, the council, seem to cower and grovel under anyone who raises their voice at them, for no logical reason. Characters were awfully two-dimensional, and, often – even less. Story fell short, lacked consistency, reason.

The best I can give this book is a 3 out of 5, for the few okay-er paragraphs.

Categories: 3-5, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, dark fantasy, Dracula: General, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, urban fantasy, vampires, Vlad Dracula III | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | The Dracula Tape by Fred Saberhagen | Dracula 1

fred saberhagen the dracula tape book reviewAuthor: Fred Saberhagen
Title: The Dracula Tape
Series: Dracula 1
Genre: Dracula; Vampires
Pages: 288
Rate: 5/5 | Goodreads

What a fun little book! I’m starting Dracember (Dracula + December) with “The Dracula Tape” by Fred Saberhagen, Stoker’s Dracula retold from Dracula’s perspective.

About the Book: Not all that was told in “Dracula“, given to us through letters, journals, and diaries, has happened the way people there have claimed it to happen. So, Dracula’s here to sling some dirt back, after he has been wrongfully painted as women-stalking monster, and tell his side of the tale.

My Opinion: It’s a very amusing book. Dracula is clearly very annoyed by the false story, and I can almost imagine him rolling his eyes at Harker, live or on the pages, reading the story of a bunch of righteous men chasing down a vampire. It’s well written, easy to read, and at times even historically accurate.

A good start. Solid 5 out of 5.

Categories: 5-5, Books of Occult, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Horror, Books: Supernatural, Dracula: General, Nosferatu Books, Paranormal, vampires, Vlad Dracula III | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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