Up until a year or so ago, I admit I didn't even know what Dystopian was, but I'm pleased to say I've been well educated since and it gives me great pleasure to announce the nominees for a Grunter Award for 2016 in the category Dystopian/Science Fiction:
Forged in War by T.E. Hodden is a relatively short novella; at just 95 pages on Kindle, but like all of Hodden's stories I have read to date, it is concise and packed full of an excellent story. Of all Hodden's books I have come across thus far, I would definitely put Forged in War at the top of the list.
The story concerns a soldier, who assists a young girl to escape from her destroyed city, being overrun by the forces of The Legion. Although they were together only briefly, they forged a bond, which would resurface later when the war was finally concluded.
This story is at its core, a romance, built around the questions of war, morality, and duty in a futuristic science fiction/fantasy world. I found the writing compelling and the characters easy to identify with and root for.
This was a very enjoyable read and one I would not hesitate in recommending to anyone who likes their romance a bit spiced up by science fantasy. A great new entry from Hodden.
Forget Indiana Jones or the Da Vinci Code, if you want to read a rollicking tale of an adventurous archeologist, Catholic Church conspiracies and U.S. Government interference then you shouldn't go past Brandt Legg's Cosega Search.
This book grabbed me from the first chapter and never let go. It is a non-stop journey of evasion once archaeologist Ripley Gaines finds what he thinks he has spent his whole career looking for; proof that man is much older than general archeological theories would leave us to believe. What he has actually found is an artifact that will change forever the way we view our world. So powerful is this artifact that the Catholic Church is willing to kill for it, the U.S. Government will do anything to gain access to it.
On the run, with a young female reporter Gaines crisscrosses the country trying to evade the FBI, the Vatican agents and who knows who else, leaving a trail of dead bodies behind them. There is barely time to catch your breath while reading this book.
Cosega Search is the first of a trilogy that follows the further adventures of the artifact, the archeologist, and the journalist. As an introduction to the series and an encouragement to read the rest of the trilogy, Cosega Search does its job extremely well. This is the second Legg book that I have read and I am convinced this author is a real talent and he will be top of my list of favorite authors and books to read from now on. The Cosega Search earned every single one of the five stars I awarded it and some more besides.
I was pleasantly surprised with Almana. It was a well-written story that immediately drew me in and endeared the characters to me. In its essence, Almana is a dystopian, young adult novel from Julayn Adams.
Set following World War III, humanity is struggling to survive in North America, especially on the West Coast and Los Angeles. The city is ruled by an evil overlord, Equis, who commands obedience through fear and terror. Scattered around the surrounding countryside are small enclaves of survivors who are determined to rebuild civilisation and live happy and productive lives despite the horrors that have been bequeathed them.
Into one of these enclaves, the Angel Almana has been sent. Heaven and Angels, it appears, have almost given up on humanity. They tried desperately to stop the conflict before it began, but man's evil nature won out in the end. Almana's specific task is to protect a young girl, Alexa, who is destined to be the one who will save the world and humanity.
The story has the feel of the old west, with good, upright citizens trying their best to live fruitful and productive lives, whilst surrounded by violence and terror. When Almana arrives in this tiny settlement, she meets and falls in love with Alexa's brother. The story is full of the usual issues and petty jealousies that one would find in any small, self-sufficient community. I particularly liked the way the author was able to weave in a real humanity into Almana's character, who is, of course, a supernatural being. The romance, I felt, was especially well done.
I enjoyed this story much more than I expected. As the first book in what is clearly to be a series, I must congratulate the author on hooking the reader to await the next episode of this captivating tale. If dystopian, young adult fiction is your thing, I am confident you will love Almana. An excellent beginning to this new series. Good job!
The Grunter Award for Excellence in Indie Books, in the Dystopian/Science Fiction category for 2016 goes to - Cosega Search (Cosega Sequence Book 1) by Brandt Legg
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