Review: Skyeater By J. Alex McCarthy


Publisher: McCarthy

Publishing Date: May 2015

ISBN: 9781511594318

Genre: SciFi

Rating: 3.1/5

Publisher Description: Crippled by a car accident, Los Angeles exercise-fanatic Cole loses his will to live. He tries to end it all with a bottle of pills, but instead wakes up healed, inhumanly strong, and able to create energy in the palm of his hand. Mystified, he experiments with his new abilities and seeks an explanation.  An answer that defies all logic comes when towering humanoid aliens descend from space. When the aliens go on a massacre, Cole employs his newfound powers to thwart the enemy. Convenient. Too convenient. 

Review: This was written in the third person present tense (thanks to Jana for clarifying that), which made for an interesting, albeit, detached point of view. I read the first version but was contacted by the author about my interest in a freshly edited copy as the original was rife with grammatical errors. I waded through the errors on towards a good storyline, solid character development and some crazy SciFi world building.

Cole is in a tragic accident (with alien designs) and has new found super powers that he attributes to his watch. As he recovers and finds that he can’t kill himself he begins to realize that there are bigger events in play than just his myopic take on life. The pace is quick and the author continues to develop his characters along with that intense movement. A tough trick to accomplish for any writer as the emotive is sometimes lost along with any character development.

Towards the end the scenes jump and shift schizophrenically. Logical scene progression takes a back seat to the frenetic action. Aliens blowing kisses and behaving like humans is not really what you expect when it comes to SciFi. 

This author has a lot of talent that needs to be toned down and made cogent.  Embracing creativeness is wonderful but can often times leave the genre shallow if there is not some realistic aspects to the interactions and subsequent story line.  A publishing deal would be great as the author could make use of editors and principally, Beta readers, in order to weave a tighter tale.



Review: The Ables by Jeremy Scott


Publisher: CloverCroft

Publishing Date: May 2015

ISBN: 9781940262659

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 3.1/5

Publisher Description:  Phillip Sallinger’s dad has told him he’s a custodian—a guardian—and his genetically inherited power is telekinesis. He’ll learn to move objects with his mind. Excited to begin superhero high school until he discovers he’s assigned to a “special ed” class for disabled empowered kids, he suddenly feels like an outsider. Bullied, threatened, and betrayed, Phillip struggles, even as he and his friends—calling themselves the Ables—find ways to maximize their powers to overcome their disabilities, and are the first to identify the growing evil threatening humanity. 

Review: This was a pretty good read made for YA crowd. There were quite a few twists and turns at the end that keep you guessing, which tends to lighten an otherwise dark turn of personal events for Phillip. A good 30% of the novel is quite a bit of dialogue filler which tends to drag on a bit prior to the action. A little too much “setting the stage”.

The novel still delivers in the “root for the underdog’ genre and the powers that reside within the world building are creative and somewhat compelling.



Review: Secret Samurai: Book Two by Jill Rutherford


Publisher: Troubador Publishing Ltd

Publishing Date: March 2015

ISBN: 9781784629571

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: DNF

Publisher Description: This is the second book in the Secret Samurai time-slip romantic adventure trilogy. The excitement and intrigue mount as we continue to follow the intermingling lives of Bebe, Kenji, Kai and Yoshi.
Bebe struggles to control her two lives; her own in modern Japan and the other she lives in the mind of Kai Matsuda, a samurai involved in the civil war of the 1860’s which ended the samurai system and gave birth to modern Japan. 

Review: Meh. Great idea, good world building and some great characters until you get to Bebe. She just ruins the whole story line with her whining and insta-love personality. Strange attempt at a romance novel when the main character lacks a backbone.