Book Review: Last Call At The Nightshade Lounge

Another book crushed during the NEWTS! I know that it is now September but I am just getting around to writing the reviews for the NEWTS books now because I was so busy trying to read them all before August was over. This one was called Last Call At The Nightshade Lounge by Paul Krueger.

Synopsis: College grad Bailey Chen has a few demons: no job, no parental support, and a rocky relationship with Zane, the only friend who’s around when she moves back home. But when Zane introduces Bailey to his cadre of monster-fighting bartenders, her demons get a lot more literal. Like, soul-sucking hell-beast literal. Soon, it’s up to Bailey and the ragtag band of magical mixologists to take on whatever—or whoever—is behind the mysterious rash of gruesome deaths in Chicago, and complete the lost recipes of an ancient tome of cocktail lore.

This book was so good! When I heard about it through a booktuber named “Drums Of Autumn”, I knew I needed to have it. The concept of mixing drinks that enable the person to have superpowers alone is fascinating and I was instantly intrigued.

And then I start reading and find out that it is a diverse book with a mixed-race main character named Bailey and I love it even more. It is really enriching to see more diverse sets of characters in strong leading roles. There is also a Canadian character that I absolutely loved because they didn’t exactly show a stereotypical Canadian person with the “Sorry’s” and the “I love maple syrup” but gave them a multilayered personality that was just a joy to experience.

The book would end some chapters with drink recipes explaining what powers this drink gave you and the magical history behind how it was discovered among the bartenders and mixers. They had drawings of the drinks in an old victorian sketching style.

I normally don’t gravitate towards a book with historical elements (not a fan of historical fiction) but I would love to learn all about the mixing lore and the discovery of magical drinks.

There is a lot of action, some romance and a take on superpowers that I have never experienced before. It was very easy to get through and I found myself having a hard time putting this book down! I would recommend this book to anyone that wants a fun urban fantasy book that is very well-paced and honestly should be a series….hint hint….Paul, make another book like this!

Book Rating: 5/5

You can buy this book on Amazon and find it on Goodreads!

Disclaimer: I was given this book as a gift and I read it because I wanted to. I was in no way compensated to give it an honest review.


It is finally September and I completed my NEWTS TBR but until I make that video, here is my September TBR where I talk about the books I will be reading this month and announce my giveaway winner!

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Book Spotlight: Wild, Dark Times

WDTimes Digital coverWild, Dark Times

Expected Publication Date:July 23rd, 2019

Genre: Urban Fantasy/ Paranormal

It’s the summer of 2012 and Elizabeth Megalos is a disillusioned art-school grad getting by as a bank teller in St. Louis. One evening, she’s attacked by a possessed coworker and saved by a mysterious, wise-cracking sorcerer named Eddy. He drags Elizabeth and Hugh—a skeptical scholar of the occult—to Europe, where he introduces them to his three magical celebrity friends. Once there, Eddy explains the group’s mission: preventing a Demiurge—a creature out of Gnostic Christian mythology—from fulfilling the visions of doom in the Book of Revelation. The Demiurge has been drawing power from the misguided beliefs in the Mayan apocalypse and is set to start the destruction on Dec. 21st, 2012. Through ritual magic and a series of psychedelic experiences, the group learns that Elizabeth is the key to taking down the Demiurge, though she can’t imagine how she will be the one to stop Armageddon.

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Excerpt

“OK. Seriously. Please. Tell me exactly who you are, what you’re doing, how you made my phone fly into your hand, and why the fuck my co-worker just assaulted me,” said Elizabeth, the last of her patience dwindling.

“You can call me Eddy,” he said. “The milk is for the protection spirit I called to keep us safe for now. As for your coworker… well, she’s possessed by a qlippoth, which is pretty much a vampiric assemblage of cravings, guilt, self-loathing, and a whole other mess of nasty emotional energies. Most are made when the sad and pathetic losers of the world jerk off to some of the sickest porn the bowels of the Internet can shit out. Obviously, there’s a fair number of these icky beasties around. This particular one’s been coalescing around your back alley. Probably feeding off of your used tampons or something. They like those. Used condoms and jerk-off rags too. Genital fluids are like bonbons for these things. And sometimes they’re able to possess people with very little emotional control and/or intelligence during certain astronomical phases. My guess is your coworker wasn’t exactly a shining example of emotional stability. As for the phone: involving the cops would just complicate things, so I used a little arcane prestidigitation to take it from you for the moment.”

“What the fuck are you talking about?” asked Elizabeth.

“OK, we need to skip past the whole ‘Spirits? Magic? Are you crazy?’ shit because we’ve got a hungry, demon-possessed hippie trying to break in and drink our nether juices, and I for one don’t want that chick anywhere near my junk.”

Available on Amazon

About the Author

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Austin Case received a Master’s Degree from the University of Amsterdam in Western Esotericism and Mysticism. His academic knowledge of the occult and other peripheral phenomena has given him a unique take on fantasy and speculative fiction.

Austin Case | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


WildDarkTimes

Blog Tour Schedule

August 26th

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

Entertainingly Nerdy (Spotlight) https://www.entertaininglynerdy.com

I Smell Sheep (Spotlight) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/

August 27th

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com

Touch My Spine Book Reviews (Spotlight) https://touchmyspinebookreviews.com

August 28th

My Bookish Bliss (Review) http://mybookishbliss.com

Didi Oviatt (Spotlight) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com

Shalini’s Books and Reviews (Spotlight) https://bookreviewsbyshalini.com/

August 29th

Inked and Blonde (Review) http://www.inkedandblondeonline.co.uk

Just 4 My Books (Spotlight) http://www.just4mybooks.wordpress.com

Scarlett Readz & Runz (Spotlight) https://scarlettreadzandrunz.com/

August 30th

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

J Bronder Book Reviews (Spotlight) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/

Blog Tour Organized By:

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R&R Book Tours


Rapid Fire Book Tag you say? I tried to answer these questions on the fly! Thanks to Dominic from Reading Fandom for tagging me to do this.

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Book Spotlight: Awakening

If you loved The Starlight Chronicles, then this graphic novel version of Awakening: A Christmas Episode, will make a really fun addition to your collection. You can also try an win yourself a copy below!

awakening

Awakening: A Christmas Episode

Illustrator: Eko Bambang

Publication Date: April 25th, 2019

Genre: Graphic Novel/ Urban Fantasy

Length: 72 Pages

Christmas is a time for miracles, but miracles have always bothered Hamilton Dinger.

This Christmas Eve, he has only two reasons to be cheerful: Rachel’s Café is open late, and he has a special present for Gwen Kessler. So even if he has to sit through a session of Grandpa Odd’s ramblings, he knows he’ll have some holiday mocha and a chance at finally telling Gwen how he feels about her. His fledgling hope is lost the moment when a new demon monster begins attacking the Star of Hope. Now, not only does Hamilton have to transform into his city superhero self to fight it, he has to deal with Starry Knight, too. Can Hamilton find a new reason for hope this holiday, or is it too much to ask for one more Christmas miracle?

Find out in this short story set between the Book 1 and Book 2 of the Starlight Chronicles from C. S. Johnson, now with illustrations by comics artist Eko Bambang.

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For your chance to win a copy of this graphic novel, click the link below!

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About the Author

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C. S. Johnson is the award-winning, genre-hopping author of several novels, including young adult sci-fi and fantasy adventures such as the Starlight Chronicles, the Once Upon a Princess saga, and the Divine Space Pirates trilogy. With a gift for sarcasm and an apologetic heart, she currently lives in Atlanta with her family. Find out more at http://www.csjohnson.me

CS Johnson | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

Blog Tour Organized By:

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I know I said I was on a book buying ban but here are all the books I got for my birthday!

Also for all you fantasy lovers out there, my friend Moud Adel (author of the War Remnants which I reviewed in July) has created this new game called Majority Rules where you get to decide what happens in his fantasy story. You will read the story and then vote in a poll for what you want the next scene to be. YOU take control and YOU make the decisions. Every Thursday, there will be new scene options so it is a continuous game! Check it out by clicking on the image below!

Join the game:

https://mastoperia.com/majority-rules/

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Book Review: The Wizard Heir

What up reader fam? Hey Hi Hello. Any guesses what this is? These are the intros to popular booktuber videos. But I will just say, hey it’s me again. I want to start this off by saying that I successfully completed my OWLS for the magical readathon! This was the last book I tackled. It was called The Wizard Heir by Cinda Williams Chima and is the sequel to The Warrior Heir.

The Wizard Heir book on a bookshelf

Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Seph McCauley has spent the past three years getting kicked out of one exclusive private school after another. And it’s not his attitude that’s the problem: it’s the trail of magical accidents – lately, disasters – that follow in his wake. Seph is a wizard, orphaned and untrained, and his powers are escalating out of control.

After causing a tragic fire at an after-hours party, Seph is sent to the Havens, a secluded boys’ school on the coast of Maine. Gregory Leicester, the headmaster, promises to train Seph in magic and initiate him into his mysterious order of wizards. But Seph’s enthusiasm dampens when he learns that training comes at a steep cost and that Leicester plans to use his students’ powers to serve his own mysterious agenda.

This sequel begins with a new character named Seph and the book is set in his point of view instead of Jack’s from the first book. It deals a lot more with wizards instead of warriors in this one.

It starts off in Toronto which is really cool and then progresses to Maine for rest of it (at least for the most part). I love when books include places that I have either visited or are a part of the country I live in.

There were magical battles. A private school. Some tense family issues. What more could you want? I really enjoyed the friendships he made and I liked that his character was very different from Jack’s.

I found that some plot points were very easy to figure out but it didn’t hinder the book’s capability to dazzle me with its magical elements. And there was more discussion about this urban fantasy’s wizarding world and the different factions of magical folk which I really liked learning about.

The wizarding world seems to be very flawed and Seph and the other characters are working to fix it so that all the factions are treated equally. I look forward to reading the next book in this series to see where Cinda takes it.

I would recommend this book for anyone that likes a good urban fantasy tale!

Book Rating: 4/5

You can buy this on Book Depository and Amazon or find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: I read this book because I wanted to. It was not sent to me in exchange for a review.


I did some book hauling while I was away on vacation because who doesn’t like UK book covers. Check out the video below to see what book I picked up!

Visitors Coverage

Book Review: The Warrior Heir

It’s about time I bust back into the world of……FANTASY! I started a new series that was recommended to me by my boyfriend (yes, I am bisexual if you didn’t know…surprise). The first book of the series was called The Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima and I loved it. I feel like I have been reborn into the world of books. Either that or I read a lot of duds so this one brought me back up to good standards of books. I probably just missed fantasy because it has been so long since I have read this genre.

The Warrior Heir book on a bookshelf

Synopsis: Before he knew about the Roses, 16-year-old Jack lived an unremarkable life in the small Ohio town of Trinity. Only the medicine he has to take daily and the thick scar above his heart set him apart from the other high schoolers. Then one day Jack skips his medicine. Suddenly, he is stronger, fiercer, and more confident than ever before. And it feels great – until he loses control of his own strength and nearly kills another player during soccer team tryouts.

Soon, Jack learns the startling truth about himself: he is Weirlind, part of an underground society of magical people who live among us. At their helm sits the feuding houses of the Red Rose and the White Rose, whose power is determined by playing The Game – a magical tournament in which each house sponsors a warrior to fight to the death. The winning house rules the Weir.

As if his bizarre heritage isn’t enough, Jack finds out that he’s not just another member of Weirlind – he’s one of the last of the warriors – at a time when both houses are scouting for a player.

This book was a really great start to a series. The main character Jack reminds me of Percy Jackson and the series seems to have that kind of vibe going for it. I love anything to do with magic so it was nice to jump into a series with a lot of promise.

Honestly, the book started right away with a pretty intense action scene and I had decided to just read a little before bed. 100 pages later and now 2 am, I finally decided to go to sleep.

The book even caught me off guard at points which I loved. I hate when a book is too predictable.  The magic system that is built in this series is really cool. There are different types of magic users and they all have their own special sets of skills. Wizards are the all-powerful ones but then there are sorcerers, enchanters, and warriors that each have their own unique abilities. The warriors are very rare and the different wizard families will pit them against each other in battle. The winning wizard family gains control over the society if their chosen warrior wins in battle.

It reminded me of the Hunger Games as well (which is a good thing) in the sense that young teenagers are put into a fight to the death situation that they don’t really have any control over.

I can’t wait to dive into the second book in this series because I am not ready to be done with this magical world the author has created and the wonderful cast of characters that she has built up and fleshed out. Did I mention that all the characters are very well fleshed out?! Because they are! The only character I found slightly annoying was Jack’s aunt Linda. She just bothered me for some reason.

I have to read a couple of other books but I know I will be thinking about this series in the back of my mind until I jump into the next one. All in all, if you like fantasy or any of the series I have mentioned above, then give this one a chance.

Book Rating: 4.5/5

You can buy this book on Amazon and find it on Goodreads.

Disclaimer: I borrowed this book from my boyfriend’s bookshelf and read it because I wanted to (and he wanted me to as well).


I recently uploaded my Booktube Newbie tag video so check it out below if you are interested. I would love it if you subscribed but that is completely up to you!

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