Book Review: Burn (Salem’s Revenge) (Volume 3) by David Estes

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Brew (Salem’s Revenge) (Volume 1) by David Estes

A YA Fantasy/Paranormal Novel published by Amazon Digital Services (01/26/2015)

 

Summary:

Now knowing the secret of Martin Carter, Laney decides to try to see if she can do something about his curse because she loves Rhett Carter. She and Bil Nez are captured though and it will take all of their combined efforts to find a way out of their predicament. On the other side is Rhett, who is desperately trying to keep the peace between the magic born and humans before the all-out battle he knows will happen in three days’ time.

Keywords:

Witches, Warlocks, Wizards, Paranormal, World Domination, Power Struggle, End of Humanity, Death, Violence, Evil, Hero, Challengers, Revenge, Hunting, Killing, Grudges

 

My Review:

I didn’t think the chapters from the POV of Hex or Grogg were necessary. Grogg reminded me of Lord of the Rings’ Gollum in many ways. Grogg also reminded me of Perry in the Dweller Saga, whose function in the story I also did not get.

This third and final book in the trilogy was super exciting and full of action in the all-out final battle while still leaving the story open as a world to play in for further books.

What I loved the most about David Estes’ writing is the characters. He sums them up and their relationships with each other himself in this book, “Laney Harris, the Master of Witty Comebacks and Love of my Life, Tillman Huckle, the Surprisingly Brave Gamer and Weapons Seller, Hex, the Wonderdog (and so much more!), Grogg, the Master-less Mud Troll, Floss, the Pierced Non-Witch-Hunter, Trish, The Breaker of Curses and Bringer of Hope, Rain Carter, The Prodigal Daughter, Martin Carter, My Dad, and yes, even Bil-freaking-Nez, who hasn’t had a blackout in months, and the Reaper, who’s not such a bad guy after all.”
Estes is able to build an entire world and an entire cast of characters without losing any understanding of who is who and what is what. He layered the story and the characters perfectly throughout the books so that I knew each and every one.

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services 01/26/2015 and is available on Amazon here.

TLDR Star Rating: 4.50

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

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Book Review: Boil (Salem’s Revenge) (Volume 2) by David Estes

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Brew (Salem’s Revenge) (Volume 1) by David Estes

A YA Fantasy/Paranormal Novel published by Amazon Digital Services (10/01/2014)

Summary:

“You can’t make yourself a hero,” I say. “You have to be born one. And sometimes the least likely heroes are the ones this world needs the most.” (Kindle Locations 4972-4973).

Rhett, after joining the side of the witch hunters, is bent on revenge. He thinks he now knows who is who and what is what in this battle between human born and magic born. There are three warring factions and Rhett is seeking out the New American Government to fight on their side for the humans. Laney is supportive until Rhett wants to use Trish, Laney’s sister, to help them. When they go their separate ways, it will take magic and their feelings for one another to bring them back together. Rhett’s anger has pushed him this far, but will it be too much? Will it cloud his judgement in the moment when he needs clarity, or will it prompt him forward past the point of bravery?

Keywords:

Witches, Warlocks, Wizards, Paranormal, World Domination, Power Struggle, End of Humanity, Death, Violence, Evil, Hero, Challengers, Revenge, Hunting, Killing, Grudges

 

My Review:

Second books in series with romance always seem to see the potential partners separated for one reason or another and Boil is no exception. Laney and Rhett have their differences, but so far it hadn’t kept them apart, but when Rhett wants to use Trish in his plan, that’s the last straw for Laney.

I like how Laney sticks by her convictions. So does Rhett, but in a world where it’s difficult to tell who’s on what side and where allegiances lie, convictions can only get you so far.

The brooding/boiling romance that was hinted at in book one is on fire in book two! David Estes writes such great budding/building romances in books. They aren’t just one and done or love at first sight. They are built on the stuff all great relationships are built on and Estes builds them up slow and steady to get a real heartbreaking relationship.

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services 10/01/2014 and is available on Amazon here.

TLDR Star Rating: 4.75

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

Book Review: Brew (Salem’s Revenge) (Volume 1) by David Estes

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Brew (Salem’s Revenge) (Volume 1) by David Estes

A YA Fantasy/Paranormal Novel published by Amazon Digital Services (10/01/2014)

 

Summary:

“Let me teach you how to fight witches,” (Kindle Location 655).
What if the Salem Witch Trials actually did capture and kill witches? What if, many many years later more witches were discovered and hunted and killed? What if the witches banded together to wipe out all of humanity? Cue Salem’s Revenge and David Estes’ series about witches. Brew begins with Rhett Carter, your slightly off average black football playing book lover with a soft spot for others and a penchant to avoid violence. Add in his best friend who’s gay, Xavier and Beth the girl Rhett loves. When their world falls apart at the beginning of the Revenge, Rhett will do anything to find his two best friends, even learn to hunt and kill witches from his neighbor.

 

Keywords:

Witches, Warlocks, Wizards, Paranormal, World Domination, Power Struggle, End of Humanity, Death, Violence, Evil, Hero, Challengers, Revenge, Hunting, Killing, Grudges

 

My Review:

I don’t read books about witches. I stopped reading books about wizards when I was in high school but I had confidence in David Estes that he could write a book that I would love. I was right. Estes has a knack for building a story that anyone would love, even if the parts aren’t normally what you want to read. Witches. Sure. Wizards. Certainly. The main part of the story is the main character’s journey, how Rhett Carter exists and survives in this world of chaos and paranormal. His story is written well and his relationships with his friends, so briefly shown in the beginning, and the developing relationships between Rhett and Laney and Rhett and his new dog Hex are what brings the reader into the story and makes the story alive.

The first book in the Salem’s Revenge series sets up the main characters and the goal: to save themselves and humanity in the fight between witch gangs to end humans. Brew, the first in the series has an awesome end of the book battle that answers and raises questions to be answered with the continuation and conclusion of the series.

This book is told from Rhett’s point of view, but the reader gets a real good feel for Laney and many of the other characters. I loved all of the characters and felt that their strengths and their weakness brought them to life.

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services 10/01/2014 and is available on Amazon here.

TLDR Star Rating: 5.00

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

Book Review: The Earth Dwellers (The Dwellers Saga Book 4) by David Estes

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The Earth Dwellers (The Dwellers Saga Book 4) by David Estes

A YA Sci-fi/Dystopian Novel published by David Estes (09/03/2013)

 

Summary:

“…in the end, we all die. But we don’t die equal.” (Kindle Locations 2675-2676).
Earth Dwellers. They came from below ground and they refuse to mingle with those already living in the harshness of the surface of the Earth. In this final installment of the Country Saga Series and the Dweller Saga Series, Earth Dwellers chronicles the final battle for control of the surface. It’s about more than control, though, the Earth Dwellers don’t want to share and plan to annihilate any who are living above ground.

 

Keywords:

Cowardice, Protection, Loyalty, Love, Romance, Compassion, Patience, Responsibility, Leadership, Power, Overthrow, Dictatorship, Tracked, Post-apocalyptic, Underground, Segregated Society, Class System, Unequal Power, Corrupt Government, Fight the Power, Resistance, Friendship, Survival

 

My Review:

I was very glad that David Estes once again provided a slang term guide at the beginning of the book with all the different “regions'” special words and definitions. His usage of these terms is not wholly unique, but adds a specialness and intimateness to the worlds he is creating. I absolutely love the Fire Country’s curse words and like it when an author thinks of unique curse words that are inoffensive to our modern real world.

I was not as pleased with this final book as I was with any of the Country Saga Books or the first Dweller Saga book. This final book of both series fell short of the excitement in the other books as it was trying to bring together so many characters and so many stories, but focused mainly on the original storyline with Adele of the Moon Realm and Dweller Saga Series. Main characters from other stories, such as Water & Storm Country didn’t get as much time and weren’t even present for the entire final battle!

I did not like Perry and was exasperated with how much appearance he made in this final book and in the Fire country book.

I still enjoyed how David Estes told the story from many perspectives and appreciated it much more in this book as many people from many places were coming together.

Not only was there resolution of the old stories from the other books, but Estes gave us a new story and new characters: The Earth Dwellers.

This novel was published by David Estes 09/03/2013 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TLDR Star Rating: 4.25

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

Book Review: The Sun Dwellers (The Dwellers Saga Book 3) by David Estes

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The Sun Dwellers (The Dwellers Saga Book 3) by David Estes

A YA Sci-fi/Dystopian Novel published on amazon.com (11/27/2012)

 

Summary:

“While the star dwellers live in squalor and filth and darkness, and the moon dwellers are impoverished, hungry, and hopeless, the sun dwellers enjoy the high life, basking in their beautiful sunlight, surrounded by elegant buildings, pristine city streets, and everything money can buy. (Kindle Locations 1998-2000).”

It is this injustice that Adele and the lower Tri-Realms are fighting against. The Sun Dwellers picks up where the Star Dwellers left off and it is the second to last book in this series, but by no means is it the final book in the world of Adele, her friends, and her fellow Dwellers.

Adele’s mission in Sun Dwellers is to assassinate President Nailin. The assassination attempt isn’t all that is going on in this book, though, it is full of secrets revealed and fights and strength to the end. The romance that began in Moon Dwellers, blossomed in Star Dwellers, will be put to the test in Sun Dwellers.

 

Keywords:

Post-apocalyptic, underground, uninhabitable earth, romance, segregated society, class system, unequal power, dictatorship, in the dark, secrets, power-hungry leaders, corrupt government, fight the power, resistance, escape, kick-butt female, friendship, survival, assassination attempt

My Review:

It seems like a lot of what happens in the Dweller Saga is travel. Adele and her trusty companions are constantly on the move, using stealth and secrecy to accomplish their goals. The Sun Dwellers takes place mostly in the Sun Realm and mostly out of sight of any main pathways. It also takes place within only several days, but there is no want for action and adventure and emotion.

I love the tension present in this book between Adele and Tristan. Their relationship was really put through a loop with some secrets revealed and discovered. Why were they so instantly attracted to each other to begin with? Estes gives us more insight into this answer and more. Adele and Tristan each go through heartache as they come to terms with the answers they discover and their feelings for each other. It is both heartbreaking and exhilarating to watch them in their relationship.

If you like a story full of suspense and secrets, action and adventure, love and emotion, then go no further and grab the Dweller Saga by David Estes because they are excellent.

 

This novel was published through Createspace Independent Publishing Platform 11/27/2012 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.50

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

Book Review: Water & Storm Country (The Country Saga) by David Estes

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Water & Storm Country (The Country Saga) by David Estes

A YA Sci-fi/Dystopian Novel published by David Estes (06/03/2013)

 

Summary:

“As the name suggests, storm country is a place where nature fights against itself constantly, warring in the skies— not with swords and shields and horses and ships, but with lightning and dark clouds and— Boom!” (Kindle Locations 506-507).

Huck Jones may only be 14, but in a world that is ravaged by a plague and the fact that old age is a fantasy to most, he is expected to be a man and take command of his life, as long as he follows all the rules laid down by his father, Admiral Jones. Huck is a ‘Soaker,’ and has spent his life on a ship. He is supposed to become a man and take control of the unruliest ship of the lot, but it will take courage and leadership, things Huck is still learning.

Sadie has always wanted to be a Rider and is determined to be a Rider. There shouldn’t be any problems, because she’s destined to be a Rider, but she wants to get her horse and fight now. There are threats now and she isn’t content staying back in the tent with her father. She has no place for cowards and doesn’t like being cooped up when she could be out there with her destiny as a Rider in the Stormer’s army.

The Stormers and Soakers don’t get along, but when an even larger enemy rears its head, they will have to play nice to stay alive together.

Keywords:

 Storms, Horses, Ships, Slaves, Coming of Age, 14 year old, Responsibility, Leadership, Power, Cruel Father, Cowardice, Protection, Loyalty, Love, Romance, Compassion, Patience

My Review:

Water & Storm Country is more than a story about survival and determination, it is a coming of age story set in world entirely different than our own. It is a story about growing up and taking responsibility and fighting for those you love. Huck, more than Sadie, must figure out who he wants to be as an adult and become the leader he is supposed to be.

Once again David Estes creates two narratives in this book and balances them in their strength and importance. Huck is less sure about himself, his future and his decisions. He is nervous about living up to the expectations set forth for him. He has his convictions and they don’t always match those of his father. Sadie knows exactly what she wants out of life and knows she will be exactly what she is supposed to be. She is confident and mildly arrogant about her abilities.

I enjoyed this third book in the Country Saga Series and look forward to the culminating book of both the Country Saga and Dweller Series books: Earth Dwellers.

This novel was published by David Estes 06/03/2013 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TLDR Star Rating: 5.0

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

Book Review: Ice Country (The Country Saga) by David Estes

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Ice Country (The Country Saga) by David Estes

A YA Sci-fi/Dystopian Novel published by David Estes (03/29/2013)

 

Summary:

“To fight or not to fight? Why is it that I constantly have to make this decision over and over again?” (Kindle Locations 1578-1579).

Ice Country is the winter version of Fire Country. There are mountains and forests and snow for days. Ice Country is home to the Icies and the main character Dazz. He lived a normal life, getting into bar fights at Fro-Yo’s, hanging out with his best bud Buff, being told off by his brother Wes, disappointed in his drug-dependent mother, and living for one of his sister Jolie’s smiles. But Dazz gets into one bar fight too many and is kicked out of his second home. Desperate to make the money to pay back Fro-Yo’s for the damages, Dazz and Buff head to the local gambling den. It seems like anything Dazz does cannot end well. When they’re offered employment to help pay off debts, Dazz and Buff jump at the chance. Their employer is not who he seems and the job is exactly what it looks like. Then Jolie goes missing in the night, taken right in front of Dazz’s nose and he will stop at nothing to find her and bring her home. In the middle of his investigation into her kidnapping and during the increasing curiosity that has become his job, Dazz meets the most unlikely allies from the Fire Country. There are bigger things afoot than just the abduction of Jolie, and Dazz is determined to pick himself up and do the right thing now.

Keywords:

 Cold, Survival, Fighting, Disease, Death, Post-Apocalyptic, Convoluted Truth, Friendship, Romance, Love, Family, Curiosity, Allies, Fire Country, Revenge, Murder, Corrupted Leadership, Trust, Strength

My Review:

Dazz seems, at first, like a lowlife good for nothing seeking-out-trouble young bad boy. He gets into bar fights with little to no provocation. He aims high in the girlfriend realm without really falling in love. He has no money and no job and spends all day at the local bar. This is what life is like in the Brown Disctrict, where the poor have less opportunities and many vices. Even Dazz’s brother Wes is only barely getting by. Dazz comes to life as a character to look up to when he is given morally charged choices. He is bound by his family and his love for his sister and wants to protect her, but he is also compelled to protect the weak and innocent. He is a good person stuck in a bad situation, a rut of life in the poorer district. He is a true underdog and grows up to his potential with the story.

Skye from the Fire Country Book one of the Country Saga Series comes into this story with her fierceness and determination. She is more developed and more cool than ever in Ice Country. As Dazz puts it so eloquently, “Skye’s not the type to wait around for heroes to rescue her. She is the hero.” (Kindle Locations 4100-4101). When you need a fighter who won’t back down and can take a punch like any bar-fighter, Skye’s your man (I mean woman). Isn’t that cool to have such a kick-butt female!

Estes brings in more of the characters from book one, interweaving the sinister plot they were discovering in book one into a whole mess of a situation that gets bigger and bigger in this second book. Seina, Circ, and Feve are all back for more.

Dazz is the main character and all events are told from his perspective. He’s a fun, intelligent, and interesting narrator and does the story proud in his telling. I can’t wait for book three, Water & Storm Country.

This novel was published by David Estes 03/29/2013 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TLDR Star Rating: 5.0

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

Book Review: Fire Country (The Country Saga) by David Estes

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Fire Country (The Country Saga) by David Estes

A YA Sci-fi/Dystopian Novel published by David Estes (01/23/2013)

 

Summary:

‘“The Call is an important and magnificent event for us, the Heaters, the people of fire country. It is near and dear to my heart. It is a chance to say to all that threaten us, we will not be defeated! We will carry on, replenish our flock! We are not afraid!” A cheer rises up, but it’s deep and heavy— a man’s cheer. When I look ’round most of the women are silent.’ (Kindle Locations 3710-3712).

Siena will turn 16 shortly and her world will change. At seven her body could reproduce. At 16 she will be matched with her Call and produce a baby. At 19 and 22 she will be re-matched and reproduce twice more. At 32 she will probably die. That is the life for a girl in the Heater Tribe out in Fire Country. As a Pre-Bearer, Sie’s life is mapped out, but what if she has a choice? Her friend Lara knows something. Sie doesn’t want to have to break off her friendship with Circ to be a Call, to do her duty.

When the time comes to make a decision, what will Siena choose? She doesn’t know the complete truth, but she will try her hardest to find the answers to the ever-increasing questions surrounding the Heaters and her father, the Head Greynote.

 

Keywords:

 Tribe, Survival, Desert, Fire, Disease, Death, Fighting, Short Life Expectancy, Post-Apocalyptic, Convoluted Truth, Friendship, Romance, Love, Family, Curiosity, Duty, Obedience

 

My Review:

Siena is Scrawny and Circ is Smoky and together they are the best of friends. Sie lives for Circ and will do anything, even something completely stupid, to try to save her friend. She can’t imagine what life will be like after the Call, when she’s been matched with another random Heater in order to bear children and keep the Heater tribe alive. She can’t imagine it and it never enters the readers mind that it is a real possibility. Something has to happen. Her life and the story would be over if she was the obedient daughter who followed all the rules.

Siena is not one to follow rules without question. She is always seeking out the truth. She may be the scrawniest in the village, but she is tough where it counts. She is brave when it counts. She doesn’t think of only herself when those she loves are in danger. She is a character that fights, that doesn’t back down, that can take a hit. She is a true heroine. Yet, she still gets battered and bruised. She is still knocked around by her father, the town bullies, and her own two left feet. She is far from perfect, but she is someone to look up to nonetheless.

The intense friendship between Siena and Circ blossoms just like the romance between Adele and Tristan in the Dweller Saga. David Estes has a way of bringing two people together and showing their intense feelings and love for each other. There is nothing in Sie’s way in her love for Circ, except her realization that Circ is more than just a friend for her. If it were possible, she might choose him as her Call. Society and her father have other plans, though, and in the Heater world Sie and Circ can never and would never be matched.

I absolutely loved this first novel and will be consuming the entire Country Saga series by David Estes for more daring heroines, dashing heroes, sinister leaders, engaging love and friendships, and everything that Estes is able to do in his books that is so very captivating.

 

This novel was published by David Estes 01/23/2013 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TLDR Star Rating: 5.0

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter

Miscellaneous Mondays: My Favorite Indie Authors 6 – David Estes

The Moon Dwellers The Moon Dwellers 16047633 17678661

 

I’ve had David Estes’ The Moon Dwellers on my TBR list for a while. I think I found his book on a promo day and was intrigued by the back page summary. I love dystopian and YA, so the Dwellers Saga was a good looking fit for me.

Check him out on my Indie Stars Page here.

From the first few pages I was hooked. David Estes is one of my new favorite authors and I had a hard time putting down his books. I have read the first three books in his Dwellers Saga and have been waiting to read the Country Saga and finally the Earth Dwellers after giving some attention to some other authors, but I know that I will love each and every new book I read of Estes. He is phenomenal. He is my author hero. He has done something that is difficult to find in YA books. He has balanced the narrative between two main characters, one is a female and the other is a male. Both characters are equally important. Both characters have something to say. Both characters are strong yet vulnerable. Both characters are uniquely different. For this reason and more David Estes is a great writer. His story is compelling and fits nicely into the YA Dystopian genre. There is action and fighting and romance in his books. There is struggle and perseverance. There is death. There is survival. I look forward to all the other books David Estes has written.

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Book Review: The Star Dwellers (The Dwellers Saga Book 2) by David Estes

The Moon Dwellers

The Star Dwellers (The Dwellers Saga Book 2) by David Estes

A YA Sci-fi/Dystopian Novel published by David Estes (09/24/2012)

 

Summary:

The Star Dwellers continues Adele’s and Tristan’s stories within the impending uprising against the Sun Dwellers. Adele rescued both her sister and father in the first book (The Moon Dwellers) and now must find and rescue her mother in the Star Realm below. With the help of the friend she made while in the Moon Dweller prison, Tawni, Adele ventures down into the deepest depths of the Tri-Realms. Meanwhile, Tristan and his trusty best friend Roc must convince the Moon Dwellers to unite with the Star Dwellers against the Sun Dwellers. The Star Dwellers continues revealing secrets about the rebellion and war as well as the unique romantic relationship developing between Tristan and Adele.

 

Keywords:

Post-apocalyptic, underground, uninhabitable earth, romance, segregated society, class system, unequal power, dictatorship, in the dark, secrets, power-hungry leaders, corrupt government, fight the power, resistance, escape, kick-butt female, friendship, survival

 

My Review:

This second book in the series, like most seconds, was not quite as exciting as the first book, but I loved it just the same! It had all of the great elements I saw in the first book and continued the story I fell in love with in Moon Dwellers.

David Estes has a way with dialogue and describing action and setting the scene. His second book, much like his first in the series, is full of lovely quotable passages and great lines in the dialogue. The book is full of uplifting quotes, such as “Speak from your heart, and everything else will work itself out.” (Page 209) and “The only way to make things better is to fix the bigger problem.” (Page 219).

We are given a little more information on the overall plot regarding the inequality between the Tri-Realms as well as more intrigue into the now blossoming romance between Tristan and Adele. Roc and Tawni also continue with the story and we are given a few new characters. At this point in the series, Elsey, Adele’s younger sister, shows how wise she is.

Estes continues alternating Adele’s and Tristan’s point of views each chapter, which is done amazing well and adds so much to the complexity of the story as we get both the main characters’ inner thoughts.

I think it is still amazing how equivalent Adele’s and Tristan’s roles are in the importance of the fight for freedom and justice from the oppression of the Sun Realm and President Nailin. I love series like Hunger Games and Divergent for giving me a kick butt female character, but Estes goes a step further and gives us both a male and female kick butt characters at the same time! This series is great for both males and females alike, not just creating a role model for one gender or the other. The characters are also physically diverse and personality-wise diverse. I love them! After finishing up the Dweller Series, I will look into other books by David Estes as I think he is a fantastically gifted writer with amazing books.

 

This novel was published by David Estes 09/24/2012 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TLDR Star Rating: 5.0

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

David Estes’s Website

Twitter