Dive in Review: All Made of Hinges

I know this is an off day for me to be posting on but I needed to let you know about a fun anthology that I just finished listening to on audible.

Cheerful in the face of dark opposition. Innovative to improve a backward world. Industrial as a cure for oppressive conditions. Unyielding beneath all who seek to bind and control them. Faithful until they conquer the fear of death and rise to great acts of heroism and service. Mormons and steampunks are two faces of the same coin.

Twelve authors spin tales of true believers facing impossible odds, risking this life in the hope of gaining something better after. Mormon Battalion soldiers fight an airship, a bounty hunter crosses Porter Rockwell, cultists attempt to reanimate Brigham Young, and missionaries run into Cthulhu. These are just a few of the amazing tales by award winning, bestselling, and premier authors – D. J. Butler, John M. Olsen, Steven L. Peck, Elizabeth Mueller, Scott E. Tarbet, Jay Barnson, Joe Monson, Amanda Hamblin, Christopher McAfee, Jace Killan, John D. Payne, and Lee Allred.

All Made of Hinges is the first installment in the incredible four-part Mormon steampunk series by Immortal Works Press. If you love these stories, look for more in Put Your Shoulder to the Wheel and Press Forward, Saints.

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.com/All-Made-of-Hinges-audiobook/dp/B07R92TBMC

Embeded preview of ebook edition of All Made of Hinges.

If you want a deal, get the ebook edition, and add on the audio for only $7.49. Much cheaper than spending $17 on audiobook alone.

Now I guess this is where I tell you what I thought of it.

Dive in Review: All Made of Hinges.

Steampunk what now?

If you are like me, then you are still hung up on the sub title. A steampunk Mormon anthology? What on Earth is a steampunk Mormon?

Well it turns out that answering that question is easier than expected. These are steampunk stories where at least one character is a Mormon.

And like all anthologies, it’s a sampler of different styles, tones, voices and plots. Most are light hearted with a humorous tone, but one or two are a little intense. The real surprise were the ones that were philosophical without talking about religion at all. Not what I expected from a Mormon anthology.

These stories are all alternative history, so expect historical persons to make cameos and for some historical events to not have happened the way you thought. Some stories are just westerns with airships and others are Clockwork dystopias with zombie hoards.

The steampunk elements were all really well done, and in most stories the Mormon element was barely noticeable. So I wouldn’t let that hold you back from trying this anthology out. In fact if you’re still holding back because of religion, don’t. The characters that have the most faith are machines. And the only story that has angels is theologically incorrect. (If you ever meet two angels that contradict each other, one of them is not an angel. That is just a fact.)

Narrator Benjamin Fife, is one that I’ve heard a lot from. He always brings a unique voice to every book he reads. Nowhere is that more evident than in this anthology, where you can hear his reading style change for each story. Fife is also really good at accents, and these stories give him a wide range of accents to play with. His French and Japanese accents are new ones I got to hear.

If you like steampunk everything then this anthology is sure to delight. Just don’t go in expecting a deeper understanding of what it means to be Mormon. This is not a religious book.

*I was given a code for a review copy of this audio book. The above review is my own honest opinion and is provided willingly.*

Lucid a Dive-in Audiobook Review

So a while ago I let you in on my secret for how I get audiobooks. So I am going to start featuring more audiobooks in addition to the other books I spotlight.

Today I am featuring Lucid by L. E. Fred.

Lucid coverDevon Alexander is a 15 year-old teenager coping with the monotonous reality of his average life. His life receives an interesting reprieve as he has his first realistic dream of a spaceship. The strangest thing about the dream is that he seems to be the only one on board who isn’t in a dream-like trance. Before he can figure out anything about the dream or his strange shipmates, he manages to wake up. The next day, Devon catches a news story about inexplicable comas taking place all over the world. Devon’s life becomes increasingly interesting as he recognizes some of the victims from his spaceship trip.

Devon and an unlikely group of other teens start devising a plan to find out who is behind the strange dreams and the comas. Their plan is not only successful but immerses them in to the fantastical world that only resides in dreams. While in the dream world, the teens learn about the power of teamwork, a new world of culture, and their hidden potential to be heroes.

Suspenseful, funny at the worst times, and just a hint of teenage romance, Lucid takes a group of young adults and throws them into a fantasy world that they only thought could exist in their dreams. In a sense, they’re right.

My Dive in Review:

Lucid by L. E. Fred, asks the question, what if lucid dreaming could transport you to another world?

People all over the world are being trapped in comas. and only Devon knows why. Because every night he dreams of the space ship that is stealing them away. Until one night he meets another Lucid Dreamer.

The build up in this book is amazing, the first half is really good at hyping up the mystery and keeping you guessing at what is really happening. But once you have the answers you realize your only about half way through.

The second half is all action and adventure and ancient prophesy. There is so much going on here. There’s not just running and fighting and creating fantastic things from dreams. There is a whole world that exists on the other-side of consciousness. There’s the Nightmares and the Dreamers, and secrets yet to be discovered.

The ending though is unfinished, this is only the first book in a series. While I wouldn’t call it a cliff hanger, that ending leaves me wanting more.

I was surprised the narrator was a woman, as the main characters are all male. The main male character Devon is fifteen so I guess that was the reasoning. After awhile I forgot the narrator’s gender and just got sucked into the story.

Rebecca Roberts does a great job and she uses variation in her voice for different characters, as all good narrators should.

All together Lucid is an entertaining experience and I look forward to checking out further books in the series.

*I was given a copy of this audio-book via Story Origins for the purpose of review. All opinions are my own.*

 

Buy the book on Amazon and check that little box for audio narration here: https://www.amazon.com/Lucid-L-Fred-ebook/dp/B00L96KPNQ/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

LEFredL. E. Fred is a perpetual dreamer who writes about worlds both within and without this realm. With a degree in psychology, she tends to get lost in the mind, the greatest adventure of all. L. E. Fred just returned from a tour of Japan, and hopes to have many more adventures to inspire new tales of dreams and beyond. She currently lives in New Orleans, seated at her messy writing desk with her red furred dog at her feet.

An Irish Tale, Dive in review.

Hello, I hope everyone is surviving the epidemic alright. To get you through your forced isolation I have a book to recommend. And since St. Patrick’s day (Aka, everything is Irish day) is tomorrow, I decided to make it an Irish Tale. This story is a fun fantasy that would be great for kids. But it also has a religious message that I think the real St. Patrick would approve of.

51lII3Cp-4L

From the back cover:

This tale is about a boy named Yipson Minor who ends up on the island of Evolone Hills with his father, mother and sister. He doesn’t originate from there, but was given a push by a divine King for a divine purpose.

As a child, Yipson was under the oppression of a wicked kingdom. But once on the island, he uncovers a secret dictionary from an odd professor which leads him on a chain of events of discovery. Is it Yipson’s wild imagination or have some things unreal become real?

In the meantime, his sister, Caycee, makes her own discovery of a secret cave and a golden dragon named Frolick. But, little do they realize that her life is in danger and nothing but a miracle can save her.

****

You can buy it on Amazon in ebook paperback or audiobook. My review is of the audiobook version.

https://www.amazon.com/Caycees-Cave-An-Irish-Tale/dp/B07CV2DRPR/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?keywords=caycee%27s+Cave+An+Irish+Tale&qid=1584330256&sr=8-1#mediaMatrix_secondary_view_div_1584330266276

My Dive in Review.

Caycee’s Cave: An Irish Tale, is just that. a very Irish Tale.

While the overall book is connected by the same characters and setting, the overall plot is loose. This is very much a fantasy slice of life story recounting various adventures in a young boy’s life. His life contains dragons, guardian cats, angels, and a professor with a very unique dictionary.

I love the dictionary definitions that sprinkle the book. They give the narrative a very Lemony Snicket feel even though I believe these are made up words.

Each chapter felt like a stand alone story, though a loose plot does run through the narrative giving it a sense of continuity.

As for the narrator, Benjamin Fife does a fantastic job. I do not know if the Irish accent is his own or if he is manifesting one for the production, but it adds a great sense of atmosphere and character to this first person narrative.

*I was given a copy of this story for review purposes. The opinions listed above are my own honest evaluation.*

About the author:

81A0BEA5SWL._SY300_

Holly Szurpicki was born in Detroit, Michigan, the car capital of the world. Although she couldn’t drive yet, her imagination had a way of taking her wherever she dreamed to go. Holly wished one day to be a princess, a park ranger, or an entrepreneur. She states, “Two out of three is not too shabby.”

She is passionate about creating stories, screenplays and writing songs. Holly began writing a manuscript in the year 2001 which laid dormant. Holly focused in on raising her two children and when the year 2008 arrived, she teamed up with a virtual animation studio out of New York. That is when the dream came to life, and the Shorty Bean story became her first novel.
Art and individual creativity have tremendously inspired her throughout her career. Holly possesses visual creativity which takes her to places beyond words to live animation in her mind. Being able to envision her characters and their environments is a true gift, and she recognizes this as supernatural. Despite many tragic circumstances she has faced throughout her life, Holly always maintains a positive attitude and loves to encourage others to pursue their God- given dreams.
Her goal for writing children’s books is to create a safe and wholesome environment for imagination. Holly desires for children to DREAM BIG, and never forget that there is nothing impossible with God.  She believes each one of us has a divine destiny and wants others to never be afraid to pursue their dreams. Holly lives in northern Minnesota with her husband and two children and a water dog named Klause.  She loves the outdoors, photography and fishing, to name a few of her passions.
Check out her website:

www.hollykszurpicki.com

%d bloggers like this: