Gypsy Madden lives in Honolulu, Hawaii, loves fantasy, science fiction, and anything British and adores making costumes and dressing up at conventions! She is active with Tol Andune (the local branch of the Tolkien Society), The Last Outpost (the Hawaii Star Trek club), and HAN (Hawaii Actors Network). She has participated in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award (ABNA) contest for 3 years as well as helping with the pitch workshopping thread, contributed chapters to the round robin stories of the Doctor Who Internet Adventures (DWIAs) and can even be spotted in the Naruto fan movie Konaha vs Chaos, dressed up as Harry Potter at several of the HPEF symposiums, and in LOST as a mental patient. Hired by a Demon is her first novel in print.
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Hired by a Demon
by Gypsy Madden
Published: July 21, 2013
Vara, a female demon-summoner, finds herself hired by a mysterious temp agency to watch over soon-to-be werewolf.
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Smashwords book reviews by Gypsy Madden
Hunters' Quest (book 2 in the Hunters of Reloria series)
on March 11, 2017
Hunters of Reloria was a fun romp with a fellowship straight out of Lord of the Rings (a couple of men, an aloof elf, several hobbits, and a dwarf - though this one had three hobbits and two dwarves and they were looking for their wizard to round out their group. At least this fellowship had a token girl, though I do question why we can't even up the numbers between males and females since this is the modern age) on a quest to rescue an Elven princess and take down the enemy forces while traveling through a Middle-Earth-like realm. There were touches of other movies like Star Wars (I swear the princess was wearing the slave Leia outfit). But where this book excelled was in the moments when it escaped from borrowing and brought its own imagination, such as with the Mountain Men, the hydras, and the wizards. It read mostly as middle-grade, at times even bordering on a Disney look with the fairies and their green bell hats and the mermaids with their bright technicolor hair, but at times it did tread adult area with the start of a sex scene and one of the groups they met was cannabalistic. Since this is a middle book, a lot of the time it just felt like it was bridging between the first book, as it spent its time visiting one group to the next while setting up for the eventual final battle in the next book. Each group they met welcomed them with open arms (though some had a moment or two of difficulty before welcoming them). Still, this is a fun read with plenty of imagination, adventure, action and fantasy elements.
The Amazing Adventures of Acacia Carlisle
on Oct. 05, 2017
On the night of her birthday, Acacia’s father and brother return home with a suggestion of Acacia joining their ship for an expedition to Africa, but the trip is cut short before it even starts as Acacia’s brother Archie runs off with the rich Baron Lindsey instead. Her father goes off in search of Archie, but his ship is destroyed in a storm, leaving the family fortune to Acacia. She renews an acquaintance with her father’s dashing new captain and joins the ship to try to track down her brother once again and the dastardly Baron Lindsey.
Being a fan of the Steampunk genre, I had to pick this up, and yes, it does have a lot of Steampunk tropes. From headstrong female engineers, inventors, and adventurers, to airships, and sky cities, and plenty of goggles. Not to mention a Kraken or two. And, yes, it has the usual steampunk Victorian backdrop. The story has a strong heroine (who doesn’t need a black leather bodysuit to emphasize just how strong of a character she is) who also has a delightful introverted side that likes math and figures and doing business. The newly hired ship, while feeling realistically brought to life, did feel like it was drawing on Firefly/Serenity in places, especially when we were introduced to the crew. Most of them were original, but Ash, the sunny female engineer we first see hanging out in front of the ship sitting in a deck chair (that was how Kaylee first appeared in Firefly, too), and there’s the mysterious quarter-master named Dr. Simon with slicked black hair, blue eyes, loves wearing waistcoat vests, and harboring a dark secret (That’s an accurate description of Simon from Firefly. I’m just waiting for his sister River to make an appearance, and be the explanation of the missing supplies). Though those two rather borrowed characters aside, the story still has plenty of original characters (though I suppose Captain Drew with his serious side and cowboy attitude is akin Captain Mal Reynolds, but it’s more of a passing similarity) and the plot was certainly entirely original and a fun adventure to many imaginative locals. At only 96 pages it is a fast read. I would welcome the chance at reading more of Acacia’s adventures where she’s perfectly at ease to put aside Victorian manners for wholesome high-flying action and some romance.