Plenty of action and intrigue!
This is no ordinary paranormal romance with a little mystery thrown in. It’s a story as conflicted as you can get, complicated by secrets, personal agendas, and age-old enmity. There is plenty of action and intrigue to keep the reader in suspense right until the end of the book.
Anna and Charlie are both likeable characters, and having the story told from their alternate points of view enables the reader to develop familiarity with the thoughts and feelings of both. Between them, they have flaws and complications enough, but their backgrounds certainly create nigh-impossible odds for the relationship between them. Even so, throughout the book, one finds oneself hoping that it works out for them, despite having little optimism that it can. The resolution of the story is powerful not only in the way the drama plays out, but also in the realisations that make Anna understand her situation.
The book is really well written, delivering the story with a narration that is energetic and well-paced, keeping the reader guessing and turning those pages to see what happens next.
For all those reasons, this book has been awarded a Gold Acorn.
Find your copy here.
A brilliant YA fantasy adventure!
What a brilliant read! ‘Night’s Gift’ is a highly original and enormously entertaining fantasy adventure story.
The world building is rich in imagery and sensory detail, enabling vivid and lively visualisation as the story is read. The reader is led from one distinct setting to another, and yet another, each time developing a clear picture of the size, dimension and texture of buildings, streetscapes and scenery.
The central characters of Omen and Templar are both likeable, complex and somewhat rogueish hero figures, each with their own flaws but also possessing good qualities which others do not always recognise. My favourite though, is Tormy— it’s impossible to resist his bravery and loyalty, while his perception and encouragement both add additional dimensions to the way in which Omen and Templar fight against the evil that threatens to destroy them.
There is absolutely nothing to dislike about this book. It has all the elements of a compelling fantasy adventure— danger, challenges, deadly creatures, magic, deception, sword fights, and heroism— bound together with friendship and humour. It leaves the reader both satisfied and keen for the next phase of the story.
‘Night’s Gift’ has been awarded a Gold Acorn.
Find your copy here.
Highly original and wickedly brilliant.
This is a marvellous series of three paranormal short story reads. The writing is witty and laced with dark humour, the characters are quite unique and yet seem to belong together in a “shabby chic” kind of way, and the stories are enormously entertaining.
Clepitt writes with a trademark brand of cynical dark humour, and there are some gems of observation about society and people in general embedded in these stories of urban vampires making a life for themselves in 21st century England.
Each story is short enough to read in one sitting, and the overall story arc enjoys good continuity and development of both the characters and the challenges they face from one to the next.
The ‘Lineage’ series has been awarded a Gold Acorn for originality and wickedly brilliant storytelling.
A poignant, powerful story.
This story is not long but it sure packs a punch. It is powerfully emotive, not only in the writing but also in its messages about caring for those we love and maintaining our relationships with family beyond what is merely convenient or, worse still, shallow tokenism.
‘Saving Cecilia’ is the story of Cee Cee and her grandmother, Cecilia, and the love between them that endures despite the ravages of grief, time and Cecilia’s dementia.
I found that I could identify strongly with Cee Cee, having cared for my own mother during her own battle with that soulless disease, and having experienced many of the same anxieties and sorrows that Cee Cee did. Her character was very honestly and thoughtfully developed, particularly through her relationship with Cecilia and her thoughts and responses to the events and other characters of the story.
This is a story that everyone from mid-teens and older should read, because at some time in our life, most people will know a Cecilia or a Cee Cee if they are blessed enough to not actually become them.
‘Saving Cecilia’ Has been awarded a Gold Acorn.
Find your copy here.
A varied and enjoyable collection of short stories.
Excursions to the beach. Excursions on a bus. Excursions of the imagination.
All complex. All expressive and thought-provoking.
Each one will take you somewhere different.
Some of these pieces are fictional, others are more observant reflections on the author’s own experiences. Readers will find them all quite relatable and realistic in their portrayal of the lives of ordinary people. Subtly embedded beneath the surface of many of these stories is a layer of quite incisive social commentary that turns the lens back on the society in which we live.The stories are long enough to explore an interesting idea, and short enough to fit comfortably into a break in a busy day or enrich an evening before bed.
Enjoyable and refreshing in its variety and depth, ‘Tales From The Seaside’ has been awarded a Silver Acorn.
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An interesting and entirely absorbing historical fiction novel.
This historical novel explores the friendship between ‘Prinny’ Prince George and Beau Brummel, the leading men of London fashion during the reign of George III. It is a turbulent story of the crests and troughs of the prince’s personal relationships and social fortunes, written from his point of view, providing very personal insight into the thoughts, feelings and inner conflicts of a man who was obligated to live his life in the public eye.
This novel is very well written. The writing is vivid and lively, effectively evoking the sights and sounds of London society and making almost tangible the sensations of fabrics, textures, and settings. The characters are complex and fascinating, although not necessarily likeable. The skill of the author is such that despite his flaws and selfishness, the reader is still strongly positioned to sympathise with the prince and to almost will him to overcome the adverse situations in which he finds himself.
This book is very interesting and entirely absorbing. I have awarded it a Gold Acorn for excellence.
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Love Gaslamp stories? Read this.
‘The Slaughter Sisters’ is a gaslamp novella set in the same world as the author’s Helena Brandywine mystery series. The Slaughter Sisters are Faith, Grace and Charity, monster hunters extraordinaire.
The writing is lively and vivid, which engages the reader and enhances the dynamic characters. There is diversity and variety in the characters, some of whom are more complex than others. Each with their own strengths and flaws, the main characters are both highly individual and very complementary of each other as a group. One thing I really appreciated while reading is the way in which the author showed a character who had been perceived as a hindrance to be an asset, initiating new awareness and appreciation among the others. In this, the author subtly and cleverly teaches the reader a lesson about their own willingness to be positioned by the opinions of others and to allow that to influence our own acceptance and tolerance.
The plot is interesting, balancing the well-developed mystery and some sombre moments with some lighter moments of humour and irony.
I very much enjoyed this story. It works well as a standalone, but it also makes me keen to read the rest of the author’s books set in this world. ‘The Slaughter Sisters’ has been awarded a Gold Acorn.
Get your copy here.