Loretta Stephenson

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Smashwords book reviews by Loretta Stephenson

  • Plantgirl on Aug. 05, 2011

    Plantgirl is one of my favorite short stories by M Pax. One of my favorite paragraphs comes after "The world baffled Ba." I had to read it twice, since it was so surprising yet effective. I also enjoyed the subtle hints of wry humor, and M Pax has a way of writing so I can "see" the story. Plantgirl has a great ending that was warm, quirky and surprising. Made me smile!
  • Semper Audacia on Oct. 02, 2011

    I just finished Semper Audacia... Wow! It's full of intense feelings, drama, terrors and pathos. Relationships that were tender and loving, yet clothed in heartbreak. Courage, duty and devotion, yet also an eery technology that kind of made my skin crawl... on about 3 levels. ;-) It was a high speed ride that kept me from going to bed until I got to the ending, which reached out and grabbed my emotions. This was NOT your typical or predictable space opera tale! M. Pax has a descriptive yet poetic way of writing, even when talking techno-babble and describing crater pocked ugly moons! I was "there"... I could feel it, see it, almost smell it. It feels like she involves all your senses in the story. You don't just read it... you inhale it, hear it, ingest it, live it! Can you tell I LOVED Semper Audacia?! Yep... I highly recommend it.
  • Medieval Muse on July 28, 2012

    Karen Elizabeth Brown has given us a totally interesting story! I love time travel type tales, and this novella whisks you back to medieval times in an unusual way. I could identify with our leading lady. A modern, strong willed, independent and spunky gal who DETESTS having to ask ANY man for "permission" for anything... being plunked down in the middle ages! I enjoyed the humor that situation caused. I also enjoyed "meeting" the people from the castle. The main characters seemed real and believable, from the castle gossip to the timid scullery maid. And of COURSE our leading man. Poor guy had his hands full with this feisty "Lady" who appears out of nowhere! I won't give away the ending, but let's just say it didn't leave me grinding my teeth, like some unresolved stories do! It ended "just right". :-) If you enjoy romantic fantasy, time travel, castles, intrigue, humor, double-crossing women and gossips... well, maybe not those last two. But this was a totally enjoyable novella, just right for a hot summer evening with a tall glass of iced tea.
  • Stopover at the Backworlds' Edge on Aug. 05, 2012

    I always read the reviews before buying a book, and appreciate very much those who write them. So, when I review a book I try to do my best to be honest. And honestly... this was a BLAST to read! I thought the first book in the series (The Backworlds) was a fun read... I was delighted to find this one topped it! Once I started, I didn't want to stop. M. Pax has the ability to create a vivid new universe inside my own imagination. The bio-engineered beings, the worlds, customs, ships, even clothing and food seem so real. It was a fun romp through space and other worlds, with fascinating characters of all "kinds". I'd even venture to call Chocolate a character in THIS story! Danger, betrayal, spies, frizzers, gender-morphing beings, revenge, cruelty, friendship and tenderness... and of course, chocolate. ;-) The story had so many surprise turns I had to buckle my seat belt. I'm not fond of "predictable" books. Can we say Borrriiinnnggg? But NOT THIS ONE! The characters, the pickles they got into, the worlds they were on--and inside of--had me shaking my head at the authors wild imagination. It had me asking "how do they THINK UP of these things??!!" And I thoroughly appreciated the ending. And no... no hints. Yep... loved it. Honestly. Can't wait to read the next one in the series. And the next time I sit down to have my hot tea and chocolate... I think I'll take a long pause and remember what happened in this story!! :-O
  • The Backworlds on Aug. 05, 2012

    I've read several stories by M Pax, and as usual, I wasn't disappointed with The Backworlds. Wow, what a fun and fascinating read! The characters are so varied and colorful yet believable, the otherworldly settings are described in such a way that you "see" them. Even the foul stench of the ale that Craze, the main character, detests seemed to make my nose twitch! What a vivid imagination... and this author has the skill to make ME see it, too. But it wasn't only the authors mastery of creating a believable universe that I enjoyed. The Story itself kept me glued to my Reader even when chores were calling my name. Predictable storylines bore me. But M Pax keeps surprising me with twists and turns I didn't see coming. What a fun romp through the backworlds with these feisty bio-engineered beings from a future time. OUR future, creations from the old "fabled Earth". Can't wait for the next in this series, Stopover At The Backworlds' Edge. Ha ha, in fact I just got it. :-)