Posts Tagged ‘fantasy’

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I have lots to share today!  Check out The Chocolatier’s Wife and The Chocolatier’s Ghost.

An excerpt from The Chocolatier’s Wife.

An interview with Author Cindy Lynn Speer.

And a giveaway. Don’t forget to enter!

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Author Cindy Lynn Speer has graciously answered some questions. Enjoy the interview.

Do you have any tattoos?  Where? When did you get it/them? Where are they on your body?

No, but I think of it sometimes, but I am too – I don’t think indecisive is the word, but I would like to be able to change, because I have changed.  When I was a teen, I wanted a rose in a melting block of ice.  Now I think I would like a little fox, somewhere with a sword.

I love the idea of the power of ink on skin.  I’ve used that in Blue Moon, and I suspect I will use it again.

 

Is your life anything like it was two years ago?

Yes, mostly.  I have the same job, the same hobbies.  Some new people in my life.  I think I might be more tired than I used to be, lol.

 

How long have you been writing?

My first book was published in 2005, I think.  I have been writing much longer than that, but don’t want to give away my age!  I started writing in the back of class, in my teens, stupid stories to make my friends happy.  I’ve never really stopped.

 

What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?

Talent is important.  Persistence is essential.  Luck is the thing that makes it all work out.  So, never give up.  Keep working, keep writing, but know that it only comes easy to the very lucky.  Always look for ways to get better, and never stop working on the various things a writer has to do outside of writing.  And forgive yourself when you fail, because you will – life will happen and you will realize you haven’t written on a story or done a blog or social media in weeks.  But then you go, OK.  Let’s start again.  And you keep moving forward.

 

Tell us something about your newest release that is NOT in the blurb.

The Chocolatier’s Wife is in a tenth anniversary, illustrated hardcover edition.  We also edited it again – and yes, we caught minor little things and made tiny improvements that, while, if you have already read the book won’t rock your world, it does make me feel even happier with the book as a whole.  Also, one of my fellow swordsmen drew the maps and he is amazing.

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The Chocolatier’s Wife: ROMANCE, MAGIC, MYSTERY…. AND CHOCOLATE

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Genre: Fantasy / Mystery

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A truly original, spellbinding love story, featuring vivid characters in a highly realistic historical setting.

 

When Tasmin’s bethrothed, William, is accused of murder, she gathers her wind sprites and rushes to his home town to investigate. She doesn’t have a shred of doubt about his innocence. But as she settles in his chocolate shop, she finds more in store than she bargained for. Facing suspicious townsfolk, gossiping neighbors, and William’s own family, who all resent her kind – the sorcerer folk from the North — she must also learn to tell friend from foe, and fast. For the real killer is still on the loose – and he is intent on ruining William’s family at all cost.

 

 

Amazon

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The Chocolatier’s Ghost

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Married to her soul mate, the chocolatier William, Tasmin should not have to worry about anything at all. But when her happily ever after is interrupted by the disappearance of the town’s wise woman, she rushes in to investigate. Faced with dangers, dead bodies, and more mysterious disappearances, Tasmin and William must act fast to save their town and themselves – especially when Tasmin starts to be haunted by a most unwelcome ghost from her past…literally.

 

The Chocolatier’s Ghost is an enchanting sequel to Cindy Lynn Speer’s bestselling romantic mystery, The Chocolatier’s Wife.

Amazon

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Enjoy this excerpt from The Chocolatier’s Wife

Murder. Funny, how the idea of one’s future husband killing someone made headaches go away. It was not that she could not conceive that he was a killer; anyone who read the shipping information at the back of the newspaper, listing, among other things, the manifests of pirate ships that had been taken and destroyed, would know William was quite capable of killing. But, she reasoned, that was hot blooded killing, it was not murder. Poisoning someone with chocolate required coldness and cunning.

She moved at last, only enough to take her hair down. She stared at the pins in her hands. No. She could not believe that William was capable of cunning. He was smart, aye. But practical smart. Not without imagination, of course, you could not accuse a man who wanted to make chocolates of a lack of imagination, but he was also not the sort of man to go around blithely killing people with the very product he hoped to sell. She could not believe it.

After a while, the surprise wearing off, she tried to imagine the two paths her life might take. She thought of being at the university. She had trained there, and so she had friends as well as colleagues among the staff. Eventually she would have the seniority to teach only the advanced students, perhaps even ascend to the Circle, as her mother hoped. A life of teaching and learning how to use herbs, divining the secret meanings hidden in the wind, the rain, and the veins of leaves was hers. She was no master wizard, but she was very, very good, and she knew her life was mapped out for her here, a scholarly life of respect and decent wages and wanting for nothing. It was, clearly, a good life, which was why her family wanted it for her.

Then there was William. She tried to imagine him, blurry in her mind, by her side. A life of children, shop-keeping. It did not seem as glamorous or interesting, though she trusted she would be able to continue her studies and believed that William would provide for her, but her fame would be as his wife alone. No one would remember her save their children.  Still, it was not without its appeal, the idea of having someone who was all yours, someone to curl up against in the winter. It was harder to imagine the future, here, for she knew so little in comparison. The unknown could hold pain as well as joy.

She sighed, and went to bed, in a restless attempt at sleep for what remained of the night.

When she came down the next day she had two cases in her hands, and she was wearing her best traveling clothes. Her family looked up at her from their breakfast, as she put the heavier of the two down, her hands switching the other bag back and forth, nervous and moist on the hard, wooden handle. “You see,” she said by way of good-morning-and-here’s-my-explanation, “the problem is that I rather like him.”

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Author Cindy Lynn Speer

ChocolatiersWife author

Cindy Lynn Speer has been writing since she was 13.  She has Blue Moon and Unbalanced published by Zumaya.  Her other works, including The Chocolatier’s Wife (recently out in an illustrated hardcover to celebrate its 10th anniversary) and the Chocolatier’s Ghost, as well as the short story anthology Wishes and Sorrows.  When she is not writing she is either practicing historical swordsmanship, sewing, or pretending she can garden.  She also loves road trips and seeing nature.  Her secret side hobby is to write really boring bios about herself.  You can find out more about her at www.cindylynnspeer.com, or look for her on Facebook (Cindy Lynn Speer) and Twitter (cindylynnspeer).

Amazon Author Page

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Click on the banner below to follow the tour and comment.

The more you comment, the more chances to win!

Goddess Fish Promotions

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways go HERE

Welcome to The Friday 56 hosted by Freda’s Voice.

 

This is a really fun meme!

The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader and find a sentence or a few (no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

Then go over to Freda’s Voice and leave your link so we can visit your 56!

My 56 for this week is from:

Pulse

The Forever Man #1

  by Craig Zerf

The Forever Man 1 - Dystopian Apocalypse Adventure: Book 1: Pulse by [Zerf, Craig]

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Genre: Dystopian / Apocalyptic / Fantasy

My 56 from the eBook

Why hadn’t they come to the rescue? Where were the troops? Where were the helicopters? The fifth fleet?

Sobbing, she undid the lanyard and pulled the Stars and Stripes down from the flagpole. She unclipped it and wrapped it around her like a shawl.

Behind her the door burst open and a gaggle of lunatics scurried in.

I enjoy stories like this. And the author has such a fascinating bio. Click on the Goodreads badge to be taken to the page.

It sounds good and it’s free right now on Amazon.

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Read on if you want to know more.

Synopsis

The world, as we know it, has ended.

One man stands resolute. A man who has been trained in the savage arts of war. A man who lives his life according to a creed. A simple man who wants none of the power thrust upon him. This man is Marine Sergeant Nathaniel Hogan, seconded to the American Embassy in London and, although he does not know it, he is – The Forever Man.

The first pulse occurred in the old calendar year of 2022. A sequence of gigantic solar flares created a series of massive electromagnetic pulses that stopped the heart of our modern world and returned us to the DARK AGES.

Tens of thousands died within the first few hours as airplanes fell from the skies, hospitals ceased to work and every form of modern transportation ground to a halt.

Within days the death toll had reached the hundreds of thousands. Fires raged unchecked through the cities, water supplies ran out and survivors turn on each other as mob rule surpassed all else.

And Nathaniel finds that he has been changed by the huge amounts of Gamma radiation in the solar flares. They have enhanced his natural abilities, giving him increased speed, strength and healing. Indefinitely extended his life span and enabling him to be able to draw on the power of the solar flares to create magik.

But even The Forever Man was not prepared for what happened next, as the ongoing flares tore a hole in time and space, creating a gateway through which ‘they’ appeared. From the realms of fantasy came the orcs, the goblins and, leading them all – the Fair Folk.

Were they here to help – or to conquer?

Amazon

The cover displayed is the one I own. There are some different ones on Goodreads.

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Leave your link and I’ll drop by your 56.

Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

You can find a list of my reviews HERE.

For a list of free eBooks go HERE

To see all of my giveaways go HERE

It’s time for some Hump Day Reviews.

Got a couple of good ones for you.

Check out Behold! and Iced

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Behold! Oddities, Curiosities and Undefinable Wonders

edited by Doug Murano

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Genre: horror / fantasy/ Short Story Collection

My Review

The moment I got my greedy little hands on this book I was giddy with glee. I love the strange, unusual and creepy and this had it all.

The story has three parts, Oddities, Curiosities and Undefinable Wonders. Not wanting to risk spoilers, I’d say that sums it up nicely. Creepy gardens, gnomes, clowns, mysterious whatevers and more all await your curiosity.

There is just too much awesomeness in this collection to single out any favorites. Some of these talented authors are old friends and some are new to me. All of them are in top form, entertaining me with their various tales.

Make sure you don’t skip past the foreword. It’s a smart piece of work in itself, explaining what awaits you when you get to the meat of the book. As R.L. Stine says, “Beware. You’re in for a scare.”

Loved every bit of this book. I bet you will too. Try it and see. And remember to breathe.

5 Stars

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 I received my ARC copy of BEHOLD! from Crystal Lake Publishing. Thanks so much and thank you to these amazing authors.

Synopsis

Crystal Lake Publishing and Doug Murano, the Bram Stoker Award-nominated editor of GUTTED: BEAUTIFUL HORROR STORIES, are proud to present BEHOLD! ODDITIES, CURIOSITIES AND UNDEFINABLE WONDERS.

Slide into the spaces between the ordinary. Embrace the odd. Indulge your curiosity. Surrender to wonder. Witness as the finest talents of our time bring you tales of the strangeness at the edges of existence.

Featuring:

Clive Barker, John Langan, Neil Gaiman, Ramsey Campbell, Lisa Morton, Brian Kirk, Hal Bodner, Stephanie M. Wytovich, Erinn Kemper, John F.D. Taff, Patrick Freivald, Lucy Snyder, Brian Hodge, Kristi DeMeester, Christopher Coake, Sarah Read, and Richard Thomas.

With a foreword by Josh Malerman.

Pre-order on Amazon

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Iced

A Resort To Murder Mystery  #1

by Avery Daniels

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Genre: Mystery

 My Review

I have a fondness for cozy mysteries. They have such quirky titles and colorful covers. And there are so many themes. Food, pets, sewing, clothing and more. The theme for this book is new to me.

It’s never a dull moment for Julienne. She works at a luxurious resort as an event planner. Everything must run smoothly and last minute changes will be accommodated. Except when it’s a dead body. Somebody killed the beloved Pastor Tom. Ran him through with an ice sculpture.

Julienne had an earlier incident with the pastor so she’s suspect number one in the eyes of Detective Lawrence. If it was up to him, they need look no further for the killer.

She knows she didn’t kill the pastor and Julienne enlists the help of some friends and the sexy new neighbor to sort things out and bring the killer to justice.

Quite the mystery. There was no clear suspect. My radar pinged on one, but then I didn’t read about that person again until way further in the story. And I was wrong.

I enjoyed reading about Julienne’s personal life as much as I did the mystery. She’s fighting for her independence. Her dad thinks she should get married and have babies. And her boyfriend seems to have her future all mapped out for her. When she’s finally had enough and puts her foot down, or rather stamps it, I applauded her. I like strong female protagonists and I was with her all the way as she carved out her own life.

You don’t have to be a cozy fan to enjoy this book. It’s got lots of colorful characters, fun dialogue, and an ending that comes out of left field. It’s good clean fun.

4 Stars

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Synopsis

Julienne has her ideal job as an event planner at a prestigious resort. During a luncheon event she coordinated, a renowned celebrity pastor is killed next to the buffet. All eyes turn to her as the suspect. If she wants to stay out of jail or even keep her job, Julienne needs all the help she can get to solve the crime.

She has her work cut out for her with a vengeful high school rival now reporter, the public demanding she be fired, plus family who knows what’s best for her, and a boyfriend who doesn’t understand her. She turns to friends and a new ally to uncover who wanted to put the pastor on ice.

Julienne goes undercover and investigates a local swingers group as she follows the trail of clues before they go cold. Can she gather enough suspects and motives to convince the police to widen their investigation? Can she do it before the killer sets his murderous sights on her? Will her personal life ever be as simple as unveiling a murderer?

Amazon

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

You can find a list of my reviews HERE.

For a list of free eBooks go HERE

To see all of my giveaways go HERE

Welcome to The Friday 56 hosted by Freda’s Voice.

 

This is a really fun meme!

The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader and find a sentence or a few (no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

Then go over to Freda’s Voice and leave your link so we can visit your 56!

My 56 for this week is from: Behold! Oddities, Curiosities and Undefinable Wonders

edited by Doug Murano

Print

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Genre: horror / fantasy/ Short Story Collection

The excerpt is from the second section: Curiosities

In Amelia’s Wake

by Erinn L. Kemper

My 56

Edward shrugged. “It’s like those explorers. They went out in boats, people said they were crazy, but they needed to see it … the world. Understand the mystery.”

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Read on if you want to know more.

 I just received my ARC copy of BEHOLD! from Crystal Lake Publishing! I can’t wait to read this anthology. So many awesome authors!

Synopsis

Crystal Lake Publishing and Doug Murano, the Bram Stoker Award-nominated editor of GUTTED: BEAUTIFUL HORROR STORIES, are proud to present BEHOLD! ODDITIES, CURIOSITIES AND UNDEFINABLE WONDERS.

Slide into the spaces between the ordinary. Embrace the odd. Indulge your curiosity. Surrender to wonder. Witness as the finest talents of our time bring you tales of the strangeness at the edges of existence.

Featuring:

Clive Barker, John Langan, Neil Gaiman, Ramsey Campbell, Lisa Morton, Brian Kirk, Hal Bodner, Stephanie M. Wytovich, Erinn Kemper, John F.D. Taff, Patrick Freivald, Lucy Snyder, Brian Hodge, Kristi DeMeester, Christopher Coake, Sarah Read, and Richard Thomas.

With a foreword by Josh Malerman.

Pre-order on Amazon

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Leave your link and I’ll drop by your 56.

Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

You can find a list of my reviews HERE.

For a list of free eBooks go HERE

To see all of my giveaways go HERE

I loved Laura’s Hallowed Ones, Anya Kalinczyk, and Dark Alchemy Series so you can bet I’ll be reading her newest one, The Dragon’s Playlist.

Check it out!

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The Dragon’s Playlist

by Laura Bickle

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ISBN: 9781537891965

Genre: Contemporary Fantasy

 

From the author of THE HALLOWED ONES and NINE OF STARS comes a new novel blending the magical and the real…

 

“This is war,” the dragon said. And she believed him.

 

Di fled rural West Virginia to study music and pursue a bright future as a violinist. But when a mining accident nearly kills her father, she is summoned back home to support her family. Old ghosts and an old flame emerge from the past. When Di gets a job as a bookkeeper at the same mine where her father worked, she is drawn into a conflict pitting neighbor against neighbor as the mine plans an expansion to an untouched mountain.

If the mining company’s operation goes forward, there will be more at stake than livelihoods or the pollution of the land: Di has discovered a dragon lives deep within Sawtooth Mountain, and he is not happy with this encroachment upon his lair. When catastrophe strikes, Di must choose between her family’s best interests and protecting the dragon – the last surviving bit of magic in Di’s shrinking world.

 

In every fight, sides are chosen. And there can be no yearning for what has been left behind.

 

Read 2 New Chapters Free Each Week Starting June 1

at

Wattpad

and

https://www.facebook.com/Author.Laura.Bickle

 

Full eBook Available at Pronoun

Amazon      BN      iBooks      Kobo      Google Play

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About Laura Bickle

Laura Bickle

Laura Bickle grew up in rural Ohio, reading entirely too many comic books out loud to her favorite Wonder Woman doll. After graduating with an MA in Sociology-Criminology from Ohio State University and an MLIS in Library Science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, she patrolled the stacks at the public library and worked with data systems in criminal justice. She now dreams up stories about the monsters under the stairs. Her work has been included in the ALA’s Amelia Bloomer Project 2013 reading list and the State Library of Ohio’s Choose to Read Ohio reading list for 2015-2016.

 

More information about Laura’s work can be found at:

Website / Twitter / Facebook

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways go HERE

Welcome to Teaser Tuesday hosted by Ambrosia  @ The Purple Booker.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read.
• Open to a random page.
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

 

My Teaser for this week is from

Of Beast And Beauty

by Stacey Jay

 

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Genre: Fantasy / Romance

 My teaser from page in the Paperback.

The roses are tired of being teased with a drop or two of what they crave; they grow eager for a proper feeding.

“It isn’t time,” I whisper as I pass them by.

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Read on if you want to know more.

Synopsis

For Cinder fans, a fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast with a flipped script in which the Beauty becomes the Beast . . .

It’s pointless. Hopeless. Even if she weren’t afraid of me, we’ll always be enemies at the core. . . .

In the city of Yuan, the blind Princess Isra is raised to be a human sacrifice. Her death will ensure her city’s vitality.

In the desert, a mutant beast named Gem fights to save his people, known as the Monstrous, from starvation.

Neither dreams that, together, they can return balance to their worlds.
When Gem is captured for trying to steal Yuan’s enchanted roses, he becomes a prisoner of the city. Isra enlists his help, and soon begins to care for him—and to question everything she has been brought up to believe. . . .
 
She’s a queen; I’m her prisoner. I am her monster and she is mine. . . .

Amazon

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How about you? Got a tease? Tell me!

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways go HERE

Welcome to my Saturday Screams.

I couldn’t resist this book. The title. The cover. The blurb. The hippos! Oh My!

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River Of Teeth

by Sarah Gailey

 

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Genre: Alternative History / Fantasy / Science Fiction

My Review

Being a southern gal, I’m always looking for stories set in my neck of the woods.  The author did a superb job describing the bayous and the muddy Mississippi. I heard the rising shrill of the cicadas, the buzz of the annoying mosquitoes, and the grunt of alligators. Caught a glimpse of huge alligator gars as they rolled on the surface, while being lulled by the back and forth swaying on top my hippo. Yes, I said hippo.

The US Government came up with the idea of importing hippos into Louisiana for a much needed food supply. Sounded like a good idea, but didn’t happen. Except, in this book it did. And now the hippos are feral and eating everything, including humans, making the river a dangerous place. A ragtag group of hippo wranglers enter the swamp to round them up. All is not as it seems.

I read somewhere that in Africa more people die from hippo attacks than any other animal. They hide under the water, move at tremendous speeds, and their teeth are gigantic. In this book you have hippos that the wranglers bond with from birth, making them safe to ride, most of the time. Then there’s the feral ones. No one wants to encounter them. When some of these characters come across a feral, it’s bloody mayhem.

The characters you meet are varied and odd. One of my favorites is Winslow Houndstooth. He’s usually somber and withdrawn, until you shake his hornets nest. Then he’d as easily kill ya as step on an ant. He’s a charmer and I loved how he could make men preen and blush from his attentions.

The writing is haunting, powerful, and visual. Such a superb job for this author’s debut.  The good guys aren’t all good and some bad guys aren’t all bad. Action, intrigue, and betrayal keep you glued to the story. And the hippos, I just couldn’t get enough of them.

Do I recommend this book? Most definitely. Will I be reading the second book? Hell yes!

   5  Stars

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 Synopsis

Sarah Gailey’s wildfire debut River of Teeth is a rollicking alternate history adventure that Charlie Jane Anders calls “preposterously fun.”

In the early 20th Century, the United States government concocted a plan to import hippopotamuses into the marshlands of Louisiana to be bred and slaughtered as an alternative meat source. This is true.

Other true things about hippos: they are savage, they are fast, and their jaws can snap a man in two.

This was a terrible plan.

Contained within this volume is an 1890s America that might have been: a bayou overrun by feral hippos and mercenary hippo wranglers from around the globe. It is the story of Winslow Houndstooth and his crew. It is the story of their fortunes. It is the story of his revenge.

Amazon

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways go HERE