Broadside No. 5 – an author advertisement

Hear ye hear ye me mateys!  I announce an additional broadside to me Captain’s log.  What is a broadside ye ask?  Traditionally:

  1. A broadside is the side of a ship, the battery of cannon on one side of a warship; or their coordinated fire in naval warfare. From the 16th century until the early decades of the steamship, vessels had rows of guns set in each side of the hull. Firing all guns on one side of the ship became known as a “broadside“. source
  2. A broadside is a large sheet of paper printed on one side only. Historically, broadsides were posters, announcing events or proclamations, or simply advertisements. source

What does this mean for me mateys?  Well tomorrow I will publish the fifth edition of me broadside that will highlight a specific favorite author and their work.  Who ye ask?  It’s a surprise . . .


The Captain’s Log – the aware (Glenda Larke)

Ahoy there me mateys!  This book was part of the Maine book haul.  I had never heard of the author or this book.  Apparently this author is Australian.  Hooray for non-US authors!  The lovely cover is what drew me in:

the aware

I mean seriously – a kick-ass woman holding a giant sword and riding on a pearlescent sea creature for only 25¢.  I had to have it.  And I really really liked it.  Interestingly, it was Shortlisted for the Best Fantasy Novel in 2003 at the Aurealis Awards for Fantasy and Science Fiction.

This book is the first of a trilogy called the Isles of Glory.  The main character is a woman named Blaze Halfbreed who is attempting to find a slave woman which will get her closer to her goal of citizenship.  I liked this lady.  From an orphan on the streets with an unusual upbringing to a competent adult who is independent and relies only on herself, Blaze is bad-ass.  I mean, yes she likes to take the easy way out for survival but when push comes to shove she is more than willing to fight back.

Besides the magic in this world which was fun, I also enjoyed watching Blaze makes friends and learn to trust other people.  There are non-humans in the world like ghemphs (awesome!), Fen lurgers, and of course the sea-ponies!  (Side note:  I have a thing for ponies and the term sea-ponies reminds me of a certain childhood movie whose song is now stuck in me head).  I loved the island setting and all the references to the sea.  The side characters of Tor and Flame and Ruarth were wonderful.

There were a couple of downsides of this novel like the use of rape in the plot (not graphic at all but present), some periods of action happening off the page while the main character waited, and some odd/slow plot points that didn’t float me boat.  Oh, and though the bad guy has a reason to be bad, he seemed very two-dimensional.  But overall I liked the book so much that I just ordered the second book to read.  So if ye can find a copy and want a fantasy that is fluffy but fun . . . check this one out.

The author’s website has this to say about the novel:

Imagine what it’s like to be born citizenless in a world where citizenship is everything.

Imagine what it’s like to be abandoned by the parents you can’t remember before you are two years old, in a city that despises you for being a halfbreed.

Imagine what it is like to be able to see magic when others can’t.

Imagine what it’s like to live in the Glory Isles at a time when your archipelago is about to be discovered by another civilization from half a world away. Changes are in the wind

This is the world of The Aware.

‘I almost regretted having Awareness. Without it, I wouldn’t have noticed a thing; I would have been as oblivious to the danger as everyone else.’ Blaze Halfbreed doesn’t like Gorthan Spit, but she’s being paid to find an enslaved Cirkasian woman needed by the Keepers to further their political ambitions. When she sees dunmagic running over the floor in the taproom of The Drunken Plaice, she knows she is in trouble. Her search for the elusive slave takes her deep into the horrors of the Spit, where she discovers a threat to all the Isles of Glory and a more immediate threat to her own life. And perhaps the key to it all could lie somewhere in wild tales of vanished islands.

The Aware has an evocative cover by Australian illustrator Greg Bridges that conjures up a magical island world under scrutiny by those who have come from afar to explore the Isles, and a series of maps have been drawn by West Australian artist, Perdy Phillips.

To visit the author’s website go to:

Glenda Larke – Author

To buy the e-book go to:

the aware – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List

Ports for Plunder (me booty haul)

Ahoy there mateys!  I recently sailed on the tides in the ports of Portland, Camden and Boothbay Harbor, Maine.  Land of lobsters, lighthouses and blueberries.  Oh and the Boothbay Harbor Memorial Friends of Library used bookstore.  Where I scored an awesome treasure trove of book booty (17 books!) for only 20 bucks.  Arrrrrr!  So I thought I would share the details of the haul with me crew:

Side Note:  All covers are from Goodreads.  Click on the links to take you to Goodreads.

  1. the aware – glenda larke

2. hexwood – Diana Wynne Jones

3. daughter of venice – Donna Jo Napoli

4. kings in hell – C.J. Cherryh and Janet Morris

(apparently book four of a series.  oops!  thought it was a stand-alone)

5. the quarters novels volume one – Tanya Huff

(two books in one – love omnibus editions!)

6. the red tree – Caitlin R. Kiernan

7. the quick – Lauren Owen

8. circle of cranes – Annette LeBox

9. wench – Dolen Perkins-Valdez

10. the night circus – erin morgenstern

11. the sparrow – Mary Doria Russell

12. calling on dragons – Patricia C. Wrede

(I read this series a long time ago and am adding copies to me collection.  I had book one.  Found book three!)

13. talking to dragons – Patricia C. Wrede

(Same series as 12.  Found book four!  Just need book two now.)

And of course what kind of Captain would I be without books about the sea?

14. the fox and the faith – Dan Parkinson

15. pirates of the levant – Arturo Perez-Reverte

(book 6.  oops!)

16. the high-skies adventures of blue jay the pirate – Scott Nash

One can never have too many books.  Have any of me hearties read books off this list?  If so share yer comments or link to yer reviews.  Happy reading!

x The Captain

Captured Horizons – the dragon round (Stephen S. Power)

Yo ho ho me mateys!  The day is at hand.  Ye can finally get yer grubby mitts on this delightful booty.

the dragon round (Stephen S. Power)

Title: the dragon round

Author: Stephen S. Power

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Publication Date: TODAY!

ISBN: 9781501133206

To read my previous review of the novel click here!

To buy the novel please click here!

Happy reading!

x The Captain

On the Horizon – reliquary (Sarah Fine)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this romance fantasy eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here are me honest musings . . .

reliquary (Sarah Fine)

Title: reliquary

Author: Sarah Fine

Publisher: 47North (47North is the Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror imprint of Amazon Publishing, the full-service publishing arm of Amazon)

Publication Date: June 14, 2016

ISBN:     9781503935259

Source: NetGalley

I do not know how I truly feel about this novel.  I had major major problems with this book.  And yet I want to read the sequel.  It’s a conundrum.  See I read one previous book by Sarah Fine that was fun – of metal and wishes.  NetGalley has her book called splinter which is book two of this series but book one was still available to request so I did.  I normally do not put spoilers in me reviews but this shall have some major spoilers and strong language . . . so read further at ye own peril.

So why do I dislike it and like it despite meself?  Well the two main characters are bad guy who goes good (Asa) and good girl who goes bad (Mattie).  I like Asa in this book.  He is by far the most fun character and basically the only reason why I would read book two.  Plus he has an awesome dog.  Bonus.  Mattie is a bit of an idiot who usually rushes into trouble, is naïve in a way that makes me want to knock sense into her, and she solves problems usually by showing off her cleavage while feeling scandalous and titillated by it.  Ugh.  She is trying to save her fiancée Ben who just happens to be Asa’s brother.

Ben is a major asshole.  Mattie discovers he has been keeping secrets from her like: 1) being over $200,000 dollars in debt (at least), being a drug addict (addicted to pleasure magic), and has used magic on her to control her mind (i.e. if they are in a fight he uses it to get his way and it usually ends in sex.  Ugh.)  So Mattie finds this out and still wants to rescue him.  Hell no.  I would have dumped his ass immediately.  But Mattie doesn’t because she loves him and will save him at all costs because Ben had to have good reasons right?  Grrrrrr!  I could run Ben through with my cutlass for his treatment of women.  He doesn’t love Mattie if that is how he treats her.  He is a self-indulgent narcissistic arrogant prick.  I hate him and wanted him dead.

But of course the books have a love triangle involving the two brothers and Mattie.  Well Asa is cool but I have no idea why he would fall in love with fluff-head Mattie.  As for Mattie, well I tried to justify how she would want Ben (i.e. battered woman syndrome) which just made me grumpy and disgusted.  Ben wanting Mattie made sense cause she was so controllable in every sense.  Ugh.  As for Mattie having feelings for Asa – well of course anyone is better than fuckwit Ben.  Seriously.

The other issue I had in this book was the BDSM section.  It felt so jarring.  Mattie has to transfer pain magic and where better to do this but in a dungeon.  So Asa takes charge, gives Mattie an alter-ego (Eve), and helps Mattie transfer pain magic and deal with the “bad guilt” of having to do this to save Ben.  I mean we are told in the beginning that good girl Mattie loves sex.  Okay fine with that.  I don’t even have a problem with using BDSM in general, if it works for the story.  But it did not work in this one.  It felt like a stereotype section just to make Mattie seem more “bad” and to add more angst about “cheating” on Ben.  Ugh.

I liked the magic in the world.  There are four types: emotion, manipulation, pleasure, and pain.  The magic was served in drug dens that resembled old opium dens, at clubs, etc. and is used by the wealthy magic/drug gang elite and corporations to manipulate each other.  Mattie is a reliquary which means she can basically store magic inside herself though she cannot use it.  Of course since she is kind of a special snowflake perhaps she can magically use magic later in the series.  Who knows.  The magic concepts were cool but not focused on enough.  Angst and lust took up the focus of this book.  But I want more world building and exploration of the magic concepts!

But the really obnoxious aspect of the book was the ending.  Mattie rescues Ben and chooses to continue with the wedding plans and their future.  Umm what?  Stupid stupid stupid.  And yet despite all that I say in this review and how grumpy the flaws of this book are . . . I am still slightly interested in book two.  Why?  I have no idea.  It’s like not being able to look away when knowing disaster is coming.  I don’t usually find the idea of such things fun.  I don’t normally like urban fantasy or bad romance.  I really don’t like women being used as sexual objects against their will.  I have confused myself.  Will I read the next one?  I guess I will have to wait and see . . .

So lastly . . .

Thank you 47North!

NetGalley had this to say about the novel:

Mattie Carver’s engagement party should have marked the start of her own personal fairy tale. But when her fiancé, Ben, is violently abducted the next morning, her desperate quest to find him rips her away from small-town life and reveals a shattering truth: magic is real—and Ben is hooked. It’s not the stuff of storybooks. It’s wildly addictive, capable of producing everything from hellish anguish to sensual ecstasy almost beyond human endurance.

Determined to find out who took Ben and why, Mattie immerses herself in a shadowy underworld and comes face-to-face with the darkly alluring Asa Ward, a rogue magic dealer, infamous hustler…and her missing fiancé’s estranged brother. Asa has the power to sense magic, and he realizes Mattie is a reliquary, someone with the rare ability to carry magic within her own body, undetected. Asa agrees to help find Ben on one condition: Mattie must use her uncommon talent to assist his smuggling operations. Now, from magic-laced Vegas casinos to the netherworld clubs of Bangkok, Mattie is on a rescue mission. With Asa by her side, she’ll face not only the supernatural forces arrayed against her but the all-too-human temptation that she fears she can’t resist.

To visit the author’s website go to:

Sarah Fine – Author

To buy the novel please visit:

reliquary – Book

On the Horizon – path of fate (Diana Pharoah Francis)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this fantasy eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here are me honest musings . . .

path of fate (Diana Pharoah Francis)

Title: path of fate

Author: Diana Pharoah Francis

Publisher: Open Road Integrated Media

Publication Date: July 12, 2016

ISBN:     9781504037716

Source: NetGalley

When I saw that Diana Pharoah Francis had a book available on NetGalley I got excited.  I thought “oh I love her writing” even though silly me couldn’t remember the name of the book that I had previously read just that I loved it.  As soon as I started reading this novel, I knew I had read it before.  It is likely that I borrowed this from a library back in the day.  Turns out the book is being re-released in eBook format.  As the details in my head were so fuzzy i.e. almost non-existent, I got excited to re-explore this novel.

I loved it all over again.  The story is about Reisil who is a tark (a healer).  Reisil has finished her training and is settling down in the village of Kodu Riik where she feels that she has found her purpose in life.  Only the gods have other plans.  You see there are these people called ahalad-kaaslane who have telepathic bonds with their animal friends.  They serve as guardians of the land.  When a goshawk appears in Kodu Riik and claims Reisil has been chosen, Reisil rebels.  When a kidnapping threatens a truce to end the war between two neighboring lands, Reisil must make a choice.  This book details the choice Reisil makes and its consequences.

I loved Reisil and how she comes to terms with the beginning of her destiny.  Of course having telepathic abilities with animals is awesome.  Ahalad-kaaslane have lynx, lizard, and other companions.  I like that Reisil’s magic bond is not instant or natural.  She has to learn to use her talents.  She of course is smart, loyal, and caring.  I also love that for the most part the light romance aspects of the novel are more realistic.  First loves do not always last.  Neither do second ones.  There was a small unnecessary love triangle in his book which did irk me but overall did not spoil the book for me.  Also the portrayal of the gods in this story was fun.  I rather liked them.

The author’s website describes the trilogy as:

The Path books (PATH OF FATE, PATH OF HONOR, PATH OF BLOOD) are traditional epic fantasy. The first focuses on Reisil and how she has to make a choice to do something she absolutely doesn’t want to do, even though everybody else thinks is a great honor. In the second book, she finds out that not everybody is what they seem to be, and that evil can be really seductive. In the third book, she finally comes into herself and must really embrace who she’s become.

I want to definitely read the rest of the trilogy.

So lastly . . .

Open Road Integrated Media!

The publisher’s website had this to say about the novel:

Unlikely heroine Reisil and her goshawk companion face their unexpected destiny in this captivating first novel of an epic fantasy trilogy.

Orphaned by her mother and passed from family to family in the village of Kallas in the land of Kodu Riik, Reisil feels as if she will never truly belong. But her training as a tark, or healer, offers her the promise of acceptance by the townsfolk, and as her talents emerge, it appears she will finally be able to hold her head high.

But fate has another path in store: A goshawk named Saljane swoops into her life, and Reisil discovers that she is able to communicate telepathically with the animal. This is an undeniable sign that Reisil has been chosen by Lady Amiya, the goddess of Kodu Riik, to become an ahalad-kaaslane—a guardian of the land who must live a life of constant travel and forgo the very bonds of family and community the girl healer so desires.

Though the role of ahalad-kaaslane is a noble one, Reisil cannot bear the thought of losing the ties with society she has worked so hard to form. She rejects the Lady’s appointment, ignoring the goshawk no matter how persistently it follows her. But when a kidnapping plot breaks a treaty with the neighboring country of Patverseme, Reisil realizes the sentient bird of prey is the only creature capable of tracking the traitors down and saving Kodu Riik from the evils of war. Reluctantly, Reisil accepts her destiny as an ahalad-kaaslane, and embarks on a dangerous pursuit of the kidnappers—and a perilous trek of self-discovery—in order to save two kingdoms.

A feminist fantasy of honor and perseverance that features a special soul-to-soul bond with a blessed animal, Path of Fate was nominated for the Mary Roberts Rinehart Award.

To visit the author’s website go to:

Diana Pharoah Francis – Author

To buy the novel please visit:

path of fate – Book