TS’s Monthly Wrap-Up : Oct 2022

TS’s Monthly Wrap-Up : Oct 2022

Hello all, and welcome to my Spooky October monthly wrap-up where I had been reading books within the horror genre.   I did make a couple of changes to my reading list for the month, and was also not able to read as many titles as I wanted to as one of these changes resulted in chonker of a story which surprisingly turned out to be much better than I’ve anticipated.

NB. Books are rated within its genre.  For avoidance of doubt, rereads are not considered for Book of the Month.

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Book Review: A River Enchanted (Elements of Cadence, #1) by Rebecca Ross

Book Review: A River Enchanted (Elements of Cadence, #1) by Rebecca Ross


A River Enchanted by Rebecca Ross
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A River Enchanted is lovely fantasy brimming with Celtic-inspired lore. I felt utterly transported by it. The setting was lush, a balance of both familiar and fresh. The cast was varied, with some very interesting characters; some were even lovable. The magic was wild and enchanting and costly, and fascinatingly different across the island. The plot and the mystery element were intriguing enough to keep me invested while letting the setting and lore and characters be the true stars of the show. And the romance was beautifully balanced, core to the story without ever overwhelming the plot. There were multiple slow-burn relationships in these pages that didn’t capture me at first, but my investment in them grew as the story progressed. While it did take me a while to warm up to various aspects of this book, I grew to love it.

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Book Review: 20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill

Book Review: 20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill


20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

20th Century Ghosts is not the first short story collection I’ve read by Hill, but it’s the first one he released. As a whole, I think it might be a touch stronger than Full Throttle, a more recent short story collection of his I read in 2019. However, I also found the individual stories largely less memorable. It was more even across the board, but that meant that there were fewer that stood out to me. That being said, I really enjoyed my time with this collection, and there wasn’t a single story that I legitimately hated. In a collection of 15 stories, I’d say that’s a pretty fantastic achievement. Below are micro-reviews of each story.

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Book Review: Empire of the Vampire (Empire of the Vampire, #1) by Jay Kristoff

Book Review: Empire of the Vampire (Empire of the Vampire, #1) by Jay Kristoff

Cover art illustrated by Kerby Rosanes

Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Series: Empire of the Vampire (Book #1 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, Dark Fantasy, Epic fantasy

Pages: 725 pages (UK Hardcover)

Published: 7th September 2021 by Harper Voyager (UK) & 14th September by Tor Books (US)


Empire of the Vampire is an infuriating novel. And yet, at the same time, it is also a brilliant and bloody epic post-apocalyptic fantasy and vampire story.

“I never thought I’d find such peace in simple reading. The words were a kind of magic, taking me by the hand and sweeping me into lands unseen, times unremembered, thoughts unimagined. Through all my years in San Michon, all the blood and sweat and darkling roads I walked, I learned one of my greatest lessons sitting in that Library with those girls in the still of the night.
A life without books is a life not lived.”

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Book Review: Age of War (The Legends of the First Empire, #3) by Michael J. Sullivan

Book Review: Age of War (The Legends of the First Empire, #3) by Michael J. Sullivan

Cover art illustrated by Marc Simonetti

Age of War by Michael J. Sullivan

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Series: The Legends of the First Empire (Book #3 of 6)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy, Epic fantasy

Pages: 464 pages (Mass Market Paperback)

Published: 3rd July 2018 by Del Rey


Age of War is the best of the series so far. And it is also among Sullivan’s list of best novels.

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Cover Reveal: Wrath from the Mountains (The Bane Sword Saga, #2) by D.A. Smith

Cover Reveal: Wrath from the Mountains (The Bane Sword Saga, #2) by D.A. Smith

Hi everyone! Petrik from Novel Notions here.

We have another exciting post today. Yes, it’s another cover reveal! Novel Notions will be hosting the cover reveal of the sequel to The Blood of Outcasts by D.A. Smith! This is the second book in The Bane Sword Saga, a gritty samurai-inspired fantasy novel!

Without further ado, here’s the cover reveal of Wrath from the Mountains by D.A. Smith!

Cover art illustrated by Martin Mottet


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Cover Reveal: The Tyranny of Faith (Empire of the Wolf, #2) by Richard Swan

Cover Reveal: The Tyranny of Faith (Empire of the Wolf, #2) by Richard Swan

Hi everyone! Petrik from Novel Notions here.

We have an incredibly exciting post today. Orbit Books has asked Novel Notions to host the cover reveal to one of my most anticipated releases of 2023. The Justice of Kings by Richard Swan is one of my favorite books released this year (I read and reviewed it last year) and today I get to host the cover reveal to the sequel: The Tyranny of Faith! Martina Fačková returns as the cover artist, and she managed to, amazingly, surpass the cover art to The Justice of Kings. It is an honor for me and Novel Notions to post the cover art to The Tyranny of Faith. Without further ado, here’s the super STUNNING cover reveal to The Tyranny of Faith by Richard Swan!

Cover art illustrated by Martina Fačková

Cover designed by Lauren Panepinto

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Book Review: The Garden of Empire (Pact and Pattern, #2) by J.T. Greathouse

Book Review: The Garden of Empire (Pact and Pattern, #2) by J.T. Greathouse

ARC provided by the publisher—Gollancz—in exchange for an honest review.

Cover art illustrated by: Patrick Knowles

The Garden of Empire by J.T. Greathouse

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Series: Pact and Pattern (Book #2 of 3)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy

Pages: 446 pages (Hardcover edition)

Published: 5th August 2021 by Gollancz


The Garden of Empire did not live up to The Hand of the Sun King, but it is a good sequel—with issues—that also promises incredible things to come in the third and final book of the trilogy.

‘Ambition is only a failing if one cannot live up to it,’

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Book Review: The Bands of Mourning (Mistborn: Wax and Wayne, #3) by Brandon Sanderson

Book Review: The Bands of Mourning (Mistborn: Wax and Wayne, #3) by Brandon Sanderson

Cover art illustrated by: Chris McGrath

The Bands of Mourning by Brandon Sanderson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: Mistborn: Wax and Wayne (Book #3 of 4), Mistborn Saga (Book #6 of 7)

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy, Steampunk

Pages: 447 pages (International Paperback Edition)

Published: 26th January 2016 by Tor Books (US) & 28th January 2016 by Gollancz (UK)


The Bands of Mourning is the best of the Mistborn: Wax and Wayne so far.

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Book Review: The Battle that was Lost (Ringlander, #0.5) by Michael S. Jackson

Book Review: The Battle that was Lost (Ringlander, #0.5) by Michael S. Jackson

ARC was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Cover art illustrated by: John Anthony di Giovanni

The Battle that was Lost by Michael S. Jackson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Series: Ringlander (Book #0.5)

Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 104 pages (Kindle edition)

Published: 13th October 2022 (Self-published)


An action-packed one-sitting read, The Battle that was Lost is an introductory novella to the Ringlander that shows glimpses of Jackson’s skill at writing actions and a fast-paced story.

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