Monday, December 12, 2016

Review: A Bond of Venom and Magic by Karen Tomlinson

A Bond Of Venom and Magic
Karen Tomlinson
(The Goddess and the Guardians #1)
Publication date: October 14th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Rating: 4/5 "I liked it."
The Wraith Lord is hunting; his prize, the key to unleashing darkness and Chaos upon the eight Kingdoms. 
For Diamond Gillon the war raging in the south seems a remote danger until her home is brutally attacked. Having lost everything she holds dear, Diamond is catapulted into a terrifying new world in which legendary beasts arise, magic is condemned and half blood fae, like her, have no rights. Despite her growing feelings for her saviour, Commander Hugo Casimir, he remains a paradox – not only is he a heartless killer, he is owned by the cruel immortal fae queen; a queen who will murder her own people for magic. 
As Diamond’s circumstances become ever more perilous she is drawn deeper into Hugo’s world and discovers the lengths to which he will go to save what he holds dear. Will Hugo become her friend, her protector, or – an enemy not worthy of her trust? 
A Bond of Venom and Magic is a tale of two people bound by magic and secrets, but trapped in the complexities of love and betrayal. It is the beginning of an epic journey, one that will test Diamond’s resolve and determination to battle an evil that threatens not only her world but that of Eternity, the land of The Guardians and The Goddess.
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My Thoughts

I want to start this review by explaining that I had been expected to read this as part of a recent tour. However, winter roads made it difficult for me to post. I never wanted to skip doing my review. This was a fantastic tale and I truly believe that more people need to be familiar with Tomlinson's writing. I apologize for the late review, but I'm glad that I am able to share it with you now.

I was impressed by Tomlinson's ability to perpetuate a story. For example, there were several times when I thought that there was no way for the story to get more interesting. Then, I watched as it did. Every stinking time she had me excited about what was happening in the novel, she added one more layer to bring even more suspense. I felt that this was especially important because it was never the huge things that increased the excitement. It was always the smallest detail. Sometimes, it was as simple as a statement from a character that never appeared again.

Speaking of characters, I LOVED Hugo. I know that Tomlinson's goal was probably for her readers to love him. Kudos to her for being able to do it! He is such a big lug! I felt like he was highly intelligent because he was forced into being an actor constantly. Not only would he have to confuse his queen, he would have to bewilder Diamond and stay on top of his own stories as he did so. It could not have been an easy task!

On the other hand, I felt that Diamond was a relatively weak main character. She knows tat Hugo is forced into this position of trying to save her. However, she can't see past her own paltry ideas about love and undying devotion. How can she be so blind to Hugo's true intentions? After all of the things that Tomlinson did well, I was surprised that she included such a whiny and unintelligent main character.

Despite a weak main character, I definitely suggest reading this book.  There were several times that my toes curled and I was bound into a ball because I was so intrigued by the story and simply HAD to know what was going to happen next.  I cannot wait for Book Two to be released!

Author Bio:
Karen Tomlinson is the author of The Goddess and the Guardians series of Young Adult fantasy books. Book One: A Bond of Venom and Magic will be released October 14th 2016.
Karen has always been an avid reader. Her taste in books is eclectic but she likes nothing better than an exciting fantasy, set in a new and magical world. She lives in Derbyshire, England, with her husband, twin girls and her dalmatian, Poppy. Karen trained as a nurse and currently works as a resuscitation and clinical skills trainer, this involves training a wide variety of health care professionals and medical students in acute patient care. In addition to writing, and reading whenever she can, Karen likes to keep active. She has been training at Shotokan karate since being thirteen, likes walking, mountain biking and (for something completely different) cake decorating. She is currently working on book two in The Goddess and the Guardians series.
About me!
As soon as I could read I spent hours getting lost in the new worlds books could give me. Spending my pocket money had to be done (obviously) but not on sweets, well, not many…I spent my money on books. Back then it was Enid Blyton’s Famous Five which sparked my young mind. I didn’t rest until I had the whole set, then I migrated to the secret seven…(there was no Harry Potter then) As a teenager I would trawl through all my mum and dad’s discarded books. It was probably highly inappropriate for a thirteen year old to be reading swoony Mills and Boon romances followed by Ian Flemming, Alistair Maclean and Wilbur Smith!
Because I read anything and everything I could get my hands on back then, I now have an eclectic taste in books. I will read anything that catches my eye and absolutely love illustrated book covers! In my late teens I discovered fantasy and that genre has stayed my firm favourite. I am and will always remain a complete sucker for a fantasy with kick ass characters and worlds steeped in magic and romance!

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