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Dark Roots
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 04/16/2018 18:28:40
Dark Roots Through the centuries, the Reese family fight incomprehensible evil and pass their knowledge to the next generation, to continue their secret work and defend the innocent against such terrors. Three heroic stories, three different eras, and three very different encounters, though all share roots near the very gates of Hell. AD 1611, Essex, England, and Scotsman James Reese investigates a hovel torn asunder by a nameless beast. Infuriated to find that a helpless child was taken, he meets a Moor who knows this creature of old. Twenty years he has given chase, and Penelton knows how nigh-on impossible it may be to end it's voracious killing spree. The story of The Hunters moves as fast as the chase and fighting to follow, tense with the knowledge that more than the life of a child and the soul of a man are at stake. Shamelessly I admit my favorite tale in this volume is The Fox and the Hound, set in 1777 during the American Revolution. The Fox, a blockade-running schooner, captaine...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Steel Ambition
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 04/03/2018 20:45:49
Steel Ambition This strange and mysterious tale made me feel the cold and sense that dismal time in Siberia during the reign of Tsar Nicholas II. We meet Padarovich, a disgraced and exiled Colonel, after a disastrous Japanese offensive defeated the Tsar’s forces in China. The year is 1908, the beginning of a new era, though most don’t yet realize it, though the winds of change are blowing. Russia’s military is demoralized, there is rising unrest in the working class, and a bizarre and disastrous crash, possibly a meteor strike, has been witnessed in the small backwater known as Vanavara. Colonel Padarovich follows the trail north and discovers a technological wonder far beyond his capabilities to understand. Who created it? Not the Tsar, surely, probably not the Chinese, but perhaps the Empire of Japan, so secretive yet possessing great technological prowess. Padarovich does not know for certain, but hopes that acquiring this colossus might change his fortune. Then he meets young Bolshevik Ios...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Their Blood Is the Sea
by FJ R.
Publisher: Skirmisher Publishing
Date Added: 04/02/2018 19:15:15
Their Blood Is the Sea Not truly an avid fan of the genre, but I am a fan of good writing. And this story delivers. I was captured right from the first paragraph, immediately and sympathetically drawn to the old seafarer and the main character, Merevec. And then launched across the deck by a remorseless nightmare of a story that doesn’t let up — not even by the last sentence. The descriptive phrases of sea and battle are precise, tactile, and picturesque. You really feel that you are lurching on that storm-tossed ship. Clint’s knowledge of the era and seafaring really shines through with a brutal realism. You are never left wondering what is going on — you feel the unforgiving environment viscerally so strong is his command of the terminology and his flare for storytelling. Do you want a rousing adventure with a sinister undertow of sorcery and eldritch horror? Then read this story....

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Their Blood Is the Sea
by Tom H.
Publisher: Skirmisher Publishing
Date Added: 04/02/2018 15:03:13
Their Blood Is the Sea Just read this piece of short fantasy/horror fiction. A nicely crafted tale and just long enough. The author's obvious familiarity with the historical period and nautical terminology comes through strongly. It lends a sense of historical authenticity that pervades the story. This helps give an overall sense of verisimilitude to the setting. Having done a limited amount of sailing in my youth, I could clearly visualize the action and events. The story achieves what any author hopes for, it gives the reader all five of the senses and therefore places them at the heart of the events. It also blends two genres very well with some unexpected results; historical fantasy and eldritch horror. For fans of the pulps, all of the essentials are here; a stalwart hero facing seafaring danger and desperate, bloody hand to hand combat in an unforgiving environment as likely to kill as the enemy. Here too you get a mythos style melding of Greek lore and Lovecraft. This is a great piece of debu...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Their Blood Is the Sea
by Christopher C.
Publisher: Skirmisher Publishing
Date Added: 04/02/2018 15:02:42
Their Blood Is the Sea Their Blood Is The Sea is a historical/fantasy by Clint Staples. It is a well written story that exhibits his love not only for fantasy literature but also the deep knowledge he has of history. It is a short story but one full of depth. His descriptive text is spot on and he does an excellent job of creating relatable characters. I thouroughly enjoyed the read and am looking forward to more fiction from Clint in the future.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
KOBOLD Guide to Worldbuilding
by Jim L.
Publisher: Kobold Press
Date Added: 03/29/2018 19:56:10
KOBOLD Guide to Worldbuilding This review is a summarised version. For the full version, head over to [Swords & Stationery](https://swordsandstationery.com/roll-for-insight-
/review-kobold-guide-to-worldbuilding/). When it comes to creating new things, ideas are a dime a dozen. Everyone has an opinion. Yet, it is easier said than done to create something that's logically coherent. Furthermore, the well of ideas tends to run dry too after a while. This is where the KOBOLD Guide to Worldbuilding comes in. While not exactly "meaty", it has plenty of advice covering a wide range of topics. Each topic takes up about 5 pages of information, but it's concise and to the point. If I had to nitpick though, it's that not all the topics are equally well-written, but that's to be expected from having so many contributors. Art in the book is also a little sparse. It would have benefited from having more accompanying visuals....

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: Strange Authorities
by Alessandro M.
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
Date Added: 03/28/2018 05:13:49
Delta Green: Strange Authorities Well written, compelling, never predictable. Read it, You won't regret it!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Russian Apemen from Space
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 03/18/2018 17:39:33
Russian Apemen from Space Decades in stasis, now Russian Officer Lophyya awakens within the spaceship Null, but immediately he knows something isn't right. Alarms blare and that ever-calm computer voice isn't helping his nerves. Instinct and enhanced intelligence spur the apeman to determine where they are, what has gone wrong, if his Captain lives, and their beloved mates. Their ship, crippled, knocked off course, but their mission paramount, to defend Mother Russia, or die. Their ship has crashed deep within the Earth's hollow core, though these genetically modified Russian Apemen don't know that yet. Lophyya succeeds in awakening his Captain Bahznt, just in time to fend off a sudden attack! Approaching the Null is a squadron of mutated Atlantean Warriors, whose mission it is to determine who these interlopers are, what threat they pose, to take their technology, and destroy them. I can easily imagine these mighty ape-men with thick, Russian accents. The quick fighting action throws Lophyya into pure ...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Something Under the Sea is Drooling
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 03/17/2018 21:14:55
Something Under the Sea is Drooling I want to know more about those mighty Mindknaves and what happened with Cthulhu, just before Hal and Cobbs begin their journey across the gray, storm-tossed sea. Hal's got to hold onto his imagos, his magic, his power, any way he can, and his loyal lion-talisman, partner-pal Cobbs has to help him hold onto his cool. The doorstep of R'lyeh is no place to lose it, just as reality itself melts in mind-twisting ways. No, when everything you love is on the line, you have got to keep it together and go for it. Sparks of humor in the face of even the most dire-seeming situations give this story all the heart and kid-like sense of wonder you could ask for, and I was charmed immediately. I found a healthy dose of Douglas Adams in the writing style, and enjoyed the creativity of description, which blended right into the action and kept the whole story vivid. I want more of these likable, imaginative characters and their wild adventures!...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
W20 The Song of Unmaking
by Adrian S. [Featured Reviewer]
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
Date Added: 03/05/2018 22:09:28
W20 The Song of Unmaking I might be a little biased, but when I see a Werewolf: the Apocalypse novel with Bill Bridges name on the front cover, I expect greatness. His previous work has always been excellent, breathing life into the setting, and showing how Garou culture 'works' on a day-to-day basis. This has served as inspiration for RPG sessions, and I take Mr Bridges novels to be just-as-canon (if not more) than source books. 'Song of Unmaking' does not disappoint in any way. The novel provides a masterful cross-over between Werewolf, and Mage: the Ascension in a manner that positions the cross-purposes of both groups in a logical collision course. Favourite characters such as Albrecht, Mari, and Evan return, and a host of other characters new and old all add their individual responses to the looming threat. The depiction of spirits (two in particualr, I shan't ruin it) shows the sometimes erratic nature of these entitites, and demonstrates that spirits are not always 'easy-access fonts of knowledge'...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prelude to Okolona
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 02/26/2018 18:00:44
Prelude to Okolona On the eve of another clash toward the end of the American Civil War, 1864, Confederates gather fireside. The air is thick and heavy with more than humidity as all worry they may be on the losing side, and consider recent defeats, and rampant rumors of Sherman's burning, looting, and worse. War has taken its toll on morale, and these farmers-turned militiamen are no wealthy plantation owners, but God-fearing and family-loyal, here to simply defend their own, their patch of farmland, and the right to live free. Two men hold court and spin tales. Blustering Odell wonders aloud if they could turn the tide if only they had a stronger power on their side. His compatriot, long and lanky Cawlyer, scoffs at Odell's claims and is as chilled to the marrow as the other men, at Odell's casual mention of Mezikers, fearsome beasts bearing the likeness of Ol' Nick, or at least as close as might make most nightmares seem tame. Cawlyer didn't have to like killing the enemy, they are merely men li...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Sketchbook of Scrivenings
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 02/26/2018 17:23:42
Sketchbook of Scrivenings I found inspiration in this collection. Here you will find verses both stark and honest, leaving no hiding place for useless words. Every phrase serves a purpose to the structure of the poem. Most feel adventurous or seem to speak of potential action. Sparse verse does not mean a lack of evocative vision. There is much to draw the daydreamer and celebrate he who has seen both dark nights and bright days. From “River Song”: “Heeded, the words of the river heal The heart and soles of many, And the tears of life its ripples steal, The spirits strengthened there are plenty.” The author obviously enjoys using words to play and say what he is feeling. In this world of tweets and text-speak, it’s refreshing to read words so carefully arranged, sometimes humorously, often played against one another to pull from the reader a feeling, a memory, or share a vision. From “Sunset”: “The sun has set and settled behind the earth’s cold crust To allow his lady to grace the heavens ab...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Guestbook
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 02/26/2018 17:22:13
The Guestbook Fast-paced, multi-faceted storytelling that punches first and doesn't wait for a reaction! Brief description suits this set of cabin-in-the-woods stories, throwing the reader directly into the action. Following the perspectives of each writer's main protagonist, the bizarre happening that swallows its hapless victims is fast-paced and makes you want more. Each writer's style and perspective is nicely showcased and dovetails neatly alongside that of each other author. I'll be watching for more from these talented story weavers....

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Tides of Fate
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 02/26/2018 17:20:23
Tides of Fate There's more than meets the eye when we first meet Erlik on that lonely shore. Without delay, we are thrown into adventure, and learn what we can just as Erlik himself does. Thus the story is fast-paced and interesting, showing us as we go along for the ride, rather than weighing things down with too much description. The point is that Erlik's world is laid out for the reader as we follow him, right in the action with him. I only wish this were longer, that I could discover more of Erlik's back story, so of course to slake that thirst, I eagerly seek more of Erlik's saga and would easily recommend this to Viking enthusiasts and readers of classic pulp adventure stories....

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Weregild
by Jennifer W.
Publisher: Four Fools Press
Date Added: 02/26/2018 17:19:03
Weregild Erlik challenged, must prove himself. As son of the war-leader, Erlik's place is not assured until he earns it, and among the Danes, only blood will tell. Another action-packed tale that does not disappoint, except that it's over so quickly and leaves you wanting more adventure! Worth reading, and re-reading. One on one battle at its best.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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