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Archive for January 25th, 2017

Threading the Needle

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Threading the Needle (Erenthrall – 2) by Joshua Palmatier

The Nexus the hub created by the Prime Wielders to harness the magical power of the ley lines for the city of Erenthrall, the Baronial Plains, and the world beyond has Shattered, the resultant pulse cascading through the system and leaving Erenthrall decimated, partially encased in a massive distortion.

The world has fared no better: auroral storms plague the land, transforming people into creatures beyond nightmare; silver-white lights hover over all of the major cities, the harbinger of distortions that could quicken at any moment; and quakes brought on by the unstable ley network threaten to tear the earth apart. The survivors of this apocalypse have banded together in desperate groups, both in the remains of Erenthrall and in small enclaves beyond the city, scrounging for food and resources in an ever more dangerous world.

Having survived the initial Shattering, Wielder Kara Tremain and ex-Dog Allan Garrett have led their small group of refugees to the Hollow, a safe haven in the hills on the edge of the plains. But the ley system is not healing itself. Their only option is to repair the distortion that engulfs Erenthrall and to fix the damaged ley lines themselves. To do that, they’ll have to enter a city controlled by vicious bands of humans and non-humans alike, intent on keeping what little they’ve managed to scavenge together.

But as soon as they enter the streets of Erenthrall, they find themselves caught up in the maelstrom of violence, deception, and betrayal that the city has descended into including the emergence of a mysterious and powerful cult calling themselves the White Cloaks, whose leader is known as Father….

He is the same man who once led the terrorist group called the Kormanley and brought about the Shattering that destroyed the world!”

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Joshua Palmatier

Author’s Bio

Joshua Palmatier was born in Coudersport, PA, but since his father was in the military he moved around. Alot. He’s lived in the states of Pennsylvania (three times), Florida (twice), Washington, California (briefly), Virginia, Texas (twice), and now resides in upstate New York. He has spent the majority of his life so far going to school, earning a Bachelors of Science and a Master of Arts degree in mathematics from the Pennsylvania State University, followed by a PhD in mathematics from Binghamton University. He is currently teaching mathematics (what else) at the State University of New York–Oneonta, taught for two years at Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania, and taught for three years at Bloomsburg University while taking a break between his masters degree and the PhD.

Joshua started writing science fiction and fantasy novels and short stories in the eighth grade, when the teacher assigned a one page Twilight Zone-ish short story. He wrote a story about Atlantis. It was from the perspective of one of the inhabitants as he escaped in a spaceship, watching his world being destroyed by water from one of the viewports of the ship. He got an A. Joshua has never stopped writing since, mainly focusing on novels.

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My Review

4 star

The Nexus has fallen and the ley magic is causing trouble. Sections of Erenthrall are stuck in different times, creatures and humans are fighting and scraping by to survive, and a new cult has risen to power. Kara Tremain is trying to keep her little group alive but is also trying to come up with a plan to restore the Nexus. But this is not an easy task with so much violence around her.

I did not realize that this was the second book in a series. It did take a few minutes for me to catch up but from there I easily followed along. The story revolves around Kara and Allan as they try and gather supplies for them and others in the Hollow. Kara is trying to figure out some way to restore the Nexus but she runs into the White Cloaks. They don’t want the Nexus fixed and have created an unstable version for themselves.

This is a pretty good story. There is a lot of action as people are trying to survive in the collapse of the ley magic. Since this is part of a series, the story is not finished at the end of the book. I am curious to see how this all started and what happens in the next book.

I received Threading the Needle from the publisher free of charge. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

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The People of Broken Neck

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The People of Broken Neck by Silas Dent Zobal

From the woods where he hides with his nearly grown son Clarke and his young daughter King, ex-Army Ranger Dominick Sawyer watches Agent Charlie Basin’s flashlight beam bounce on the walls inside his cabin. Dom’s wife is missing. His post-trauma hallucinations rip at him explosively and bring him to his knees. And a local deputy sheriff is dead. When the FBI agents recede into the night, the Sawyers begin to run, across the country in stolen trucks, leaving a trail of blood behind them. Together with a young girl they pick up on the road, they hope to run until they find a peaceable place in the American Northwest.

But Agent Basin sees his own troubled family reflected in Dom’s haunted existence, and his pursuit is relentless.

All any of them want is to spirit King away to someplace safe.

All she wants is not to be afraid of her father and to find out why her mother disappeared.

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Silas Dent Zobal

Author’s Bio

Silas Dent Zobal was born in Bellingham, Washington in 1973.  He was raised in Rockford, Illinois. He earned a bachelor’s degree from DePaul University, an MFA from the University of Washington, and a PhD from Binghamton University. He has been published in the Missouri Review, Glimmer Train, New Orleans Review, North American Review, Green Mountain Review, Shenandoah, and elsewhere.  He has been awarded a NEA fiction fellowship, won the Glimmer Train Fiction Open, and been a scholar at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference.

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My Review

5 stars

Dominick Sawyer is a former US Army Ranger that has seen his share of war. But his experiences haunt him with a severe case of PTSD leading to arguments with his wife eventually leaving. Dom loves his kids and will do anything for them. After a sheriff is found dead FBI agent Charlie Basin is called in to investigate and learns that Dom has taken his kids on the run. What follows is a game of cat and mouse from Pennsylvania to Maine to Washington. Charlie is determined to catch Dom but at the same times finds himself relating to the father protecting his children.

This is a touching story. Dom is a soldier and suffers horribly from his time in duty. He is trying his best but that doesn’t keep his whole family together. It does mean that he is willing to do whatever it takes to keep his kids safe. Charlie can relates to Dom since he has a daughter of his own. He is having a hard time relating to her but he still would do whatever it takes to protect her too.

It is easy to get drawn into this story with the rich writing and the beautiful imagery throughout the country. Both Dom and Charlie are great characters and the opposite points add depth to the story.

If you are looking for a great thriller, look no further. This is one book that you need to add to your shelves.

I received The People of Broken Neck from Wildbound Literary PR for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

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