John H. Carroll

Biography

John H. Carroll was the youngest of seven children and was born in Atlanta, Georgia in 1970 where he was kept in a dresser drawer with the clean socks. Luckily, he wasn’t kept with the dirty socks or else he might have grown up to become slightly warped.
As a child, John spent most of his time wandering through the Mojave Desert in an attempt to avoid people. He would stare at the sky, imagining what it would be like to explore different worlds. One of his favorite memories is watching his dad build the fuselage of Evel Kneivel’s skycycle in their garage. One of his least favorite moments was watching that skycycle fall into the Snake River. (Not his dad’s fault and he has documentation to prove it, so nyah)
As a teenager, John spent most of his time driving wherever he could in an attempt to avoid people. He would stare at the road, imagining what it would be like to explore different worlds. He was the captain of the chess team, lettered in golf and band while in high school, and wasn’t beaten up anywhere near as much as one might imagine.
As an adult, John spends most of his time staring at a computer screen in an attempt to avoid people. He stares at the monitor for hours, imagining what it would be like to explore different worlds. Occasionally, he looks around to see what’s happening on planet Earth. Quite frankly, it frightens him. He’s just going to do his best to write as many books as he can before aliens disintegrate humanity for being so irritating.
Emo bunny minions surround John at most times. He is their imaginary friend and they look to him for guidance. At one point, they took over the world. No one noticed because they left everything exactly as it was. They gave the world back after a week because it was depressing.
The Ryallon Series is his most popular endeavor into the field of writing. His Stories for Demented Children have lightened the hearts of many strange children and adults. He writes in the evenings and weekends whenever possible.

Where to find John H. Carroll online


Where to buy in print


Series

Crazed Series
The Crazed Series is the continuation of the Willden and Wyvern Trilogies. Beings of great power manipulate the world, sometimes to the benefit of mere mortals, but more often to their detriment. Join the odd, and often unwilling, heroes of Ryallon as they face threats to humanity.

Liselle

Price: $4.99 USD.

Bounty

Price: $4.99 USD.
Ryallon Chronicles
The Ryallon Chronicles is a saga spanning multiple smaller series of epic fantasy novels written by John H. Carroll 1.The Dralin Trilogy is a swords-and-sorcery series following the lives of Pelya Jornin and Ebudae Pallon as they grow up trying to survive the sinister city of Dralin. 2.The Wyvern Series is a swords-and-sorcery series following the journeys of Pelya Jornin. After leaving Dralin, she travels the world searching out injustices and her purpose in life. Along the way, she makes many friends and even more enemies. 3. The Willden Trilogy is an epic fantasy that follows the adventures of Tathan and his companions through the Willden Forest and into the depths of the world. A new race called Rojuun has appeared in the world and is threatening to make humans their servants. It is the companions’ task to learn more and perhaps rescue a princess if they have the time. 4. The Crazed Series is the continuation of the Wyvern and Willden Trilogies. Beings of great power manipulate the world, sometimes to the benefit of mere mortals, but more often to their detriment. Join the odd and often unwilling heroes of Ryallon as they face threats to humanity.

Dralin

Price: Free!

Ebudae

Price: $4.99 USD.

Pelya

Price: $4.99 USD.

Wyvern

Price: $4.99 USD.

Liquid

Price: $4.99 USD.
Wyvern Series
The Wyvern Series is a swords-and-sorcery series following the journeys of Pelya Jornin. After leaving Dralin, she travels the world searching out injustices and her own purpose in life. Along the way, she makes many friends and even more enemies.

Wyvern

Price: $4.99 USD.

Liquid

Price: $4.99 USD.

Cloudswept

Price: $4.99 USD.

Sidetracked

Price: $4.99 USD.
Collection of Stories for Demented Children
Odd stories for children. Follow the tales of anti-heroes through misadventures and mishaps. Emo bunnies, zombies, rainbows, an unholy cow, nanoworms, zombies, a panda, a phairyphant, Steampunk animals, and sugar plum fairies share adventure across the pages.
Stories for Demented Children
Odd stories for children. Follow the tales of anti-heroes through misadventures and mishaps. Emo bunnies, zombies, rainbows, an unholy cow, nanoworms, zombies, a panda, a phairyphant, Steampunk animals, and sugar plum fairies share adventure across the pages.

The Emo Bunny That Should

Price: $3.99 USD.

Unholy Cow

Price: $0.99 USD.
Dralin Trilogy
The Dralin Trilogy is a swords-and-sorcery series following the lives of Pelya Jornin and Ebudae Pallon as they grow up trying to survive the sinister city of Dralin.

Dralin

Price: Free!

Ebudae

Price: $4.99 USD.

Pelya

Price: $4.99 USD.
Willden Trilogy
The Willden Trilogy is an epic fantasy that follows the adventures of Tathan and his companions through the Willden Forest and into the depths of the world. A new race called Rojuun has appeared in the world and is threatening to make humans their servants. It is the companions’ task to learn more and perhaps rescue a princess if they have the time.

Rojuun

Price: Free!

Anilyia

Price: $4.99 USD.

Kethril

Price: $4.99 USD.

Books

Bounty
Series: Crazed Series, Book 2 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 12. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 110,590. Language: English. Published: January 13, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
Circumstances force Tathan of the Shadows out of his comfortable lifestyle. With no other plans, he accepts a job from an old friend that sends him into the Western Kingdoms where a determined bounty hunter has set a trap. But will cows ruin everyone’s plans? Join Tathan and enemies in a world of magic, zombies, cows, a big squirrel and cranky flowers.
Sidetracked
Series: Wyvern Series, Book 4 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 7. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 106,440. Language: English. Published: July 1, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
Constant, dreary rain dampens Pelya’s spirits as she rides Honey through the war torn Kingdom of Paruth. Of greater worry are her new friends Verna, Calren and an energetic wyvern by the name of Nervy. In the past, she has led friends to sorrow and death. She has every reason to believe she will bring these idealistic new adventurers to their deaths too.
Cloudswept
Series: Wyvern Series, Book 3 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 6. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 116,710. Language: English. Published: June 1, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
After banishment from Dralin and expulsion from the Blue Wyverns, Pelya Jornin is now an agent of the Cloudswept Bank charged with recovering valuables. The job allows her to travel the world while keeping her skills sharp. She seeks answers to events in her past that sent her life spinning. More than anything, she worries about the fate of those who would attempt to be her friends.
Liquid
Series: Wyvern Series, Book 2 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 5. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 123,380. Language: English. Published: August 15, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
Book 2 of the Wyvern Trilogy Pelya Jornin and Tina Medini are agents of the Blue Wyverns Mercenaries. Their commander sends them to investigate rumors of the Rojuun, mysterious denizens of the underworld. The desperate mission through the kingdom of Swelth takes them into the beautiful and perilous depths of Ryallon where danger awaits them at every turn.
A Collection of Stories for Demented Children, Volume 2
Series: Collection of Stories for Demented Children, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 15,120. Language: American English. Published: November 28, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
Five odd stories for children combined into one collection. Follow the tales of anti-heroes through misadventures and mishaps. Nanoworms, zombies, a panda, a phairyphant, and Steampunk animals share their adventures across the pages.
Pow the Panda, The Case of the Rainbow Dragon
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 10. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 3,430. Language: English. Published: November 24, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
(5.00 from 1 review)
In the fantastically roaring year of 1925, business is good for a hard-working private eye in Chinatown. Pow the Panda sits in his office, waiting for trouble to come through the door. When trouble does show up, a girl named Opal, a gorilla, a bear, a bed and bunch of bad puns join it. Pow is left with the Case ofthe Rainbow Dragon. Caution, this story has puns. It may also contain nuts.
Steampunk Roo
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 9. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 3,290. Language: English. Published: September 13, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Science fiction » Steampunk & retropunk
(5.00 from 1 review)
It is a little known fact that Steampunk animals roam the wild Outback of Australia. Outside of Steampunk City are vast stretches of arid lands. Horrible news has come that someone is destroying water stops that keep the Steampunk animals running. It’s up to Steampunk Roo to bring a stop to the terrible destruction!
Liselle
Series: Crazed Series, Book 1 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 11. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 104,220. Language: English. Published: September 2, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(5.00 from 2 reviews)
Liselle has spent the last few years living the life of adventure she always wanted. Yet she struggles with the suffering she has seen along the way. As her powers grow, the question of who she really is, or what she really is becomes a greater mystery. Join Liselle, Vevin and their new friends as they try to discover the meaning of life, and perhaps find a little treasure along the way.
The Storage Room in the Grey Void
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,770. Language: English. Published: July 20, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Psychological thriller
(5.00 from 1 review)
Video games bring entertainment and excitement to the lives of those who play them. But what of those characters created for those games? Perhaps they are a bit more real than we might think. Perhaps they have feelings and desires, much as we who play the games do. And what of the characters who don’t get included in the game? This is the story of one such character.
Zachary Zombie and the Wicked Worm
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 8. Price: Free! Words: 2,720. Language: English. Published: June 21, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
(4.67 from 3 reviews)
Zachary Zombie has been sent by Gert the Wicked Witch to find the magical Dagger of Gik from the ruins of an old wizard’s mansion. He is accompanied by Al, Gus, and Carl, three fellow zombies. Will they discover the lost Dagger of Gik? What dangers await the rotting zombies? Who will lose the most body parts? And who, what, or where in the world is Gik?
Wyvern
Series: Wyvern Series, Book 1 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 4. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 111,020. Language: English. Published: April 9, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
Book 1 of the Wyvern Trilogy Pelya Jornin rides away from Dralin. Nightmares travel with her, haunting the lonely roads that threaten to drive her mad. The dangers within her own mind outweigh the perils of traveling alone. It is Pelya’s intention to join the Blue Wyverns. However, things are not as they should be. Will Pelya’s mind conquer battles that cannot be fought with a sword?
Naughty Nanoworms
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 7. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,050. Language: American English. Published: March 25, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(5.00 from 1 review)
Life on the streets is generally peaceful for Albert, but the streets are not without their hazards. While avoiding one type of trouble, Albert walks his way into even worse trouble. Will he keep his shopping cart? Will Meezer the cat come up with a plan to destroy the world? Can a shopping cart and a skateboard ever get along? The seventh entry in the Stories for Demented Children Series.
Phairyphant
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 6. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,400. Language: American English. Published: March 12, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(5.00 from 1 review)
Mystical phairyphants have existed since the days of wooly mammoths and mastodons. Phairydust allows them to fly on powerful, gossamer wings while they use their trunks to sniff the air for opportunities to make the world a better place for elephants. This is the story of Elly, one such phairyphant.
Pelya
Series: Dralin Trilogy, Book 3 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 3. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 110,080. Language: English. Published: November 29, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(4.60 from 5 reviews)
Book 3 of the Dralin Trilogy: Sir Imbra has told Pelya that he would one day need her help. Will Pelya’s sword arm be enough to battle a power beyond anything she’s seen? Will Ebudae’s power overcome the might of potent magic? In a city filled with despair, can the hopes and efforts of such talented individuals win the day?
Rain Glade
Series: Ryallon Chronicles, Book 15. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 25,000. Language: English. Published: September 13, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(4.33 from 3 reviews)
In an insignificant village lives a simple peasant girl by the name of Rain. She wonders what the future holds for her, or if the future even cares about her fate. Jacob is a young man conscripted into Lord Greffen’s militia. He discovers Rain injured one day and seeks to aid her. The world of Ryallon holds many places filled with magic and mystery. How will one such glade change their lives?
Ebudae
Series: Dralin Trilogy, Book 2 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 2. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 116,190. Language: English. Published: May 13, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(4.00 from 2 reviews)
Book 2 of the Dralin Trilogy: On Ebudae Pallon’s sixteenth birthday, she and her best friend Pelya are allowed into the city without escort. They visit the wonders of Carnival and make new friends. However, life in the city of Dralin is never simple . . . or safe. The Dralin Trilogy is a dark, swords-and-sorcery fantasy series following the lives of a few unusual individuals.
Attack of the Sugar Plum Fairies
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 5. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 5,440. Language: English. Published: October 21, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Holidays, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(4.83 from 6 reviews)
The Sugar Plum Fairies are tired of dancing for nothing. To make matters worse, the North Pole is freezing, they have to wear skimpy outfits and their poor little legs get worn out quickly. When the Elvin Labor Union was formed, the poor little fairies were left out of any sort of fair bargaining agreement. The time has come for all of that to change.
A Collection of Stories for Demented Children
Series: Collection of Stories for Demented Children, Book 1. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 19,980. Language: English. Published: October 21, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Holidays, Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
Five odd stories for children combined into one collection. Follow the tales of anti-heroes through misadventures and mishaps. Emo bunnies, zombies, rainbows, an unholy cow and sugar plum fairies share adventure across the pages. These stories are not for the sane of heart.
Dralin
Series: Dralin Trilogy, Book 1 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 90,120. Language: English. Published: October 16, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(4.60 from 5 reviews)
Many cities know the touch of evil and despair, but none are as bleak as Dralin. A young woman flees her past, making Dralin her destination. A young Guardsman with his own dark history hopes to make a difference in a city without hope. Is sorrow their only destiny, or can love redeem them? Two young girls raised in this city learn life's hard lessons early. Will they be defeated by its evil?
Unholy Cow
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 4. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,960. Language: English. Published: October 3, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(4.75 from 4 reviews)
Everyone keeps talking about holy cows, but nobody wants to discuss the evil, unholy cows. They creep through nighttime pastures, looking for the next opportunity to make the world a worse place to live. Opal’s parents think Halloween is evil and that candy is bad for little children. They have never let her go trick or treating. Runyx the Unholy Cow is about to change that.
Drippy the Peg Legged Rainbow
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 3. Price: Free! Words: 4,220. Language: English. Published: September 20, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(5.00 from 3 reviews)
Rainbows have existed throughout the universe since shortly after its inception. Born from light and moisture, they have expanded along with galaxies and other cosmic goo. Many are ancient, being nearly as old as the universe itself. Others are young, only born moments ago. This is the story of one rainbow, neither ancient nor young . . .
Alien Coffee
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 20,720. Language: English. Published: August 31, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » General, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(5.00 from 2 reviews)
Jillian keeps trying to drink her coffee, only to find the cup empty. However, she is NOT the one drinking it. It frustrates her more and more with each passing day until she finally discovers exactly what has been happening. Aliens, coffee, emo bunnies, snails, teenagers and a Colombian drug lord all take part in this humorous sci-fi romp. It’s hard to tell which is the worst.
Kethril
Series: Willden Trilogy, Book 3 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 10. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 114,470. Language: English. Published: July 17, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(5.00 from 3 reviews)
Book 3 of the Willden Trilogy: The companions have a plan to return Princess Anilyia to the Kingdom of Mayncal. As with most of their plans, events happen in an entirely different way. The others begin to learn more about Tathan of the Shadows and his murky past. That past presents barriers to accomplishing their goals and they must overcome them.
Zachary Zombie and the Lost Boy
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,450. Language: English. Published: April 19, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(5.00 from 1 review)
Zachary Zombie is searching for newts in the forest. He finds a lost boy instead. When the boy asks nicely for help getting to his home in the village, Zachary agrees. Things are bound to go wrong when a magical stag, a pretty woman at the edge of a cliff, a party in the cemetery and villagers with torches and pitchforks are mixed with a craving for brainsss.
Anilyia
Series: Willden Trilogy, Book 2 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 9. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 94,670. Language: English. Published: April 6, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(4.25 from 4 reviews)
Book 2 of the Willden Trilogy begins the adventure shortly after the events of book one. Tathan and his companions meet danger with a healthy dose of humor and irreverence during their adventure. Tales of a kidnapped princess are spreading like quick-fire and the world may go poof if something isn’t done.
Dont Ever Change
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 7,280. Language: English. Published: February 24, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » General
(4.70 from 10 reviews)
High school: a time of memories, good and bad. Students get together to sign each other’s yearbooks. “Don’t Ever Change” is a common phrase. What would happen if one of those students never did change? How would that student feel about it? Would it make them happy, sad or psychotic? How would you feel if you had never changed from that young teenager in high school?
The Emo Bunny That Should
Series: Stories for Demented Children, Book 1. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 3,480. Language: English. Published: January 24, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Children’s books » Holidays
(4.80 from 5 reviews)
Emo the Bunny was a sad bunny. He preferred gloomy days, walks over a cliff and misery of any sort. One day he saw something very unusual. Normally he'd take a nap and try to forget about it, but for some reason he took an interest. Then things happened. Emo the Bunny hated it when things happened. With beautiful illustrations by Arlene Rose.
Test Pilot
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 5,990. Language: English. Published: December 24, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » General, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(4.00 from 5 reviews)
Gregg Johnson was a test pilot in the Skull Squadron where death was the only retirement benefit. XOXO-13 was the designation for an experimental spaceship Gregg named Hugs and Kisses. When a tiny thing goes wrong in space, it becomes a very large thing. As usual, it had flaws, but would they be fatal?
Blue Haired Alien Girlfriend
Price: Free! Words: 6,000. Language: English. Published: November 27, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » General, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(4.29 from 14 reviews)
Blue Haired Alien Girlfriend is a stand alone short story. Joshua is a manager at FishBurgers who walks home alone every evening. One night, he comes across an unusual blue-haired woman sitting on a bench. He's thrown for a loop when she tells him where she's from, but he doesn't mind. Sometimes love can be a little quirky, sometimes it can be a lot quirky.
Rojuun
Series: Willden Trilogy, Book 1 · Ryallon Chronicles, Book 8. Price: Free! Words: 92,120. Language: English. Published: November 24, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(4.91 from 11 reviews)
Book 1 of The Willden Trilogy: Rumors are spreading about a new race called Rojuun. They appeared from the depths of the mountains eight hundred years ago with the intention of taking over the world. Tathan of the Shadows has been charged with learning more about them. However, he must learn more about his very unusual companions before he can succeed.

John H. Carroll's tag cloud

John H. Carroll's favorite authors on Smashwords

Ben Kramer
Latest book: Scars of Devotion. Published February 24, 2015. (4.00 from 3 reviews)
David Dalglish
Latest book: The Prison of Angels. Published December 4, 2012.
M. A. Nilles
Latest book: A New Beginning. Pre-release—available April 4, 2019.

Smashwords book reviews by John H. Carroll

  • The Descent on Dec. 22, 2010

    I liked this and had a fun time reading it. The words flowed smoothly for the most part and made it easy to read. It's about a man with his mind in the clouds. The perfect story for any dreamer. I found myself wondering what was seen in that cloud. Perhaps the writer's imagination?
  • The Book of Deacon on Feb. 27, 2012

    As an avid reader of fantasy, sometimes it's hard to try someone new rather than re-reading books I love, but I'm so glad I opened this book. It didn't take long to get involved in Myranda's fate. I found myself nervewracked by what could happen next and had a hard time putting the book down. The characters Myranda meets are fascinating and easy to like. I feel so bad for Deacon though and hope things work out for him. My only two critisms are the lack of chapters, which makes finding my place hard if I swipe up or down on my Kindle instead of sideways, and a few instances of head jumping between characters. These are not enough to truly detract from the story though. :) I've picked up the next two and am halfway through the second. I can't wait to get back to it. :)
  • The Great Convergence on March 05, 2012

    An excellent sequel and I can't wait to get to the third. I don't like that the baddies seem invincible and hope that the good guys start to have some successes! Like the first book, the head hopping is a bit disconcerting where the viewpoint switches from one character to the next between paragraphs, but I'm getting used to it.
  • The Battle of Verril on July 18, 2012
    (no rating)
    The third book is the best and wraps the trilogy up nicely. Myranda comes into her own and shines. I like strong heroines. Myranda holds true to her beliefs throughout all and inspires everyone else. The build up to the ending is finely crafted. It does get frustrating when the heroes keep walking into the exact same traps over and over. I felt like smacking them in the back of the head. But it's also nice to see villains that are every bit as nasty as they're supposed to be. By the end, I wanted them all destroyed. My favorite characters are Ivy, Myn and Deacon. Lain is a bit too sullen for me and Ether is incredibly foolish for someone who's supposed to have been watching the world since it came into existence. My absolute favorite is Myranda though. She's lived a tough life and remains strong and resolute throughout all three stories. Strong leading women are my favorite. :)
  • Priscilla the Great on March 04, 2013

    If Nancy Drew had a child one of the X-Men, you'd have someone almost as awesome as Priscilla the Great. This story is written for preteens through young adults, but it's an excellent read for all ages. As far as why I chose to read it instead of one of my normal fantasy books, well . . . slight confession: I've read all the Nancy Drew series, most of the Hardy Boys, all the Tom Swift, all the Cherry Ames . . . and lots of other books geared to young adult. It's what I read before someone introduced me to my first Xanth book at the age of 14. I've actually had this one in my Kindle for over a year now (along with a bazillion other books, or however many the Kindle holds) I really, really, really enjoyed this book. Priscilla is a likable character who goes through the standard frustrations of a 12 year old, but also has a few twists thrown in. She's not without her personality flaws, but they're realistic and the reader can totally sympathize with them. She's got a brothers that make her life difficult, as brothers are supposed to do, and an overprotective father. Her mother is always absent, which upsets Priscilla more than perhaps anything. A couple of boys and a best friend complicate matters, as they should. That's their job after all. Then information about the Selliwood Institute starts to appear. I can't tell you too much without giving spoilers. Mix in shady experiments, children, government plots and you get a story that's filled with adventure, danger and mystery. There's no end to the suspense. I started reading and didn't stop until I had finished the story a few hours later. The only negative I found was that certain things stretch believability a little bit, but it wasn't enough to detract from the story, and it might not be a problem for it's target audience, which is probably people under the age of 40. *chuckling* I highly recommend this book for preteens on up. It's a great story with characters that the reader can relate to. I've already purchased the next in the series and will be getting more as I finish each one. Oh yeah, there's about 8 or so of them, so it's plenty to keep a reader interested.
  • Call of the Herald - Young Adult Epic Fantasy on July 11, 2013

    As an avid reader of fantasy, sometimes it's hard to try someone new rather than re-reading books I love, but I'm so glad I opened this book. The first character you meet, Catrin, is a strong female lead. It doesn't take long to get to know who she is. Other key characters are introduced quickly and fleshed out without taking the reader out of the story. In fact, it didn't take long for me to get into the story to the point where I didn't want to put it down. Catrin is a seemingly normal young woman, but the reader soon learns that there's more to her than she or anyone else realizes. Times are changing (as they tend to do) in the world of Godsland and dire consequences have been prophesied. Unknown powers find her and she has no idea what to do with them. Add to that the threat of invasion and people hunting her and you have one stressed out young woman. ;) The people who surround Catrin are interesting and well developed. They don't cater to her, but treat her as a real person, which is nice to find. The adventure and danger are exciting and kept me on the edge of my seat, ready for more. My biggest complaint about this story was reaching the end and having to wait for the next book to load. ;)
  • Inherited Danger on July 11, 2013

    An excellent sequel. New details and suspense begin to unfold. New characters are added that are even more likeable. One of the things I like most about fantasy is that the authors always tend to was philosophical. Catrin explores her senses and how they relate to the world and other life around her. The concept of powers beyond the mortals and how they relate to supreme being/s really comes through. There is more adventure and danger at every step of the way. The world is on the brink of destruction (as most usually are) but it's possibly the mechanizations of mankind that are a greater threat than any supernatural hazard. Once again, I'm left wanting to start the next book instantly. :) These books are truly difficult to put down.
  • Dragon Ore on Oct. 09, 2013

    Lots of action in this culmination to the trilogy. I enjoyed the interactions between the characters. There are strong relationships and friendships throughout. I've always been a big fan of character driven stories. I like to get to know the individuals and love/hate them. Catrin and her friends are definitely likable. The villain doesn't quite become the archenemy that I expected. There's not enough of his motivation and personality that comes through. He seems more of a politician gone power hungry who never delivers on implied evildoer promise in the end. The other enemies throughout present frequent challenges, with the greatest enemy being nature and power I believe. The peril to Catrin and friends delivers constant suspense, which makes it difficult to put the book down. Some of the events that happen around Catrin's home while she's gone are a bit confusing and it takes a bit of concentration to keep up with the myriad of details. The world created is filled with sweeping vistas and exotic lands that are exciting for the reader to visit. The ending comes to a satisfying conclusion for this story, but is left open for the next series and a future that promises great adventure. Overall, this is an excellent fantasy series. The characters and plot are original. I definitely recommend giving it a read.
  • Soul Bonds: Book 1 Circles of Light series on May 28, 2016

    This is the first book in the Circles of Light Series. It is epic fantasy safe for young adults, though there is mild fantasy violence. If you're looking for books to keep your interest for lots of reading that may keep you up well past your bedtime, you've found it here. Tika is a young slave girl with a mysterious past. After escaping from her slavery to almost certain death, she discovers the fascinating world of dragons. Those dragons are the best part of the story. I could tell the author spent a lot of time daydreaming about them and what their existence would be like. The story begins immediately with Tika's discovery of those dragons. She forms a bond (thus the title name) with one and her life intertwines with the species from that point on. You learn about the dragons and about Tika for a chapter or two, giving you the foundation for the rest of the story. While Tika is the main character, the story that follows is largely about the dragons. They have personalities as big as they are. The characters of the dragons are distinct. It's easy to fall in love with some and dislike others with a passion. Not surprisingly, they aren't all happy about having a human among them, a fact that becomes pivotal in the events that follow. Once much of the dragon's story is presented, the plot switches back to Tika, who may be more than just a runaway slave girl. Tika is a strong and courageous woman without being a Mary Sue. She's capable and talented, but inexperienced. There are other strong women in the story whose conversations move the plot forward, rather than focusing on relationships and the such. Basically, the author avoids the pitfalls that plague so many other strong female leads. Upon reaching a new destination midway through the book, the rest of the world begins opening up. The reader gets to meet some of the other races in the world. It's a fascinating world too with exotic geographies and civilizations that are touched upon without bogging down into mind-numbing world-building. The villain and some of the evil races are quite easy to dislike. The villain's personality is well developed and multifaceted rather than being one-dimensional. There's also a good deal of mystery as to his past. The ending closes the book well with excitement and suspense. It leads one to want the next story. The one negative I found was that it was difficult to keep track of the names on occasion as a few of them sound similar. But that was resolved as the personalities developed. Each character is very much their own and their voices are distinct from each other. One of the things I liked is the mystery involved with every character, who they are and why they are that way. The author teases the reader with hints, but never fully reveals what the past may hold. There are stories to develop through the rest of the series. E.M. Sinclair's writing is daydreamy (yes, that's a word). You can see the fascination she has in exploring her world with her characters. The book is professional quality and well edited. I highly recommend for all ages.
  • Scars of Devotion on Sep. 11, 2017

    I decided to give this book a try and I'm glad I did. It is an excellent and enjoyable fantasy with characters that were likable and believable. The pace of the story kept me reading all the way through the end. Being the first book he has published, the writing was a little raw, as were my first books. However, it wasn't to the degree where it interfered with the story. The main character, Penelope, begins as a spoiled and somewhat irritating young woman, but after surviving a tragic situation becomes fascinating. The author succeeds in avoiding the Mary Sue treatment that some authors fall into (including, perhaps, myself). The development of her character is intriguing. It shows depth in the darkness she faces and the effects everything had on her. I found myself rooting for her to find happiness. The supporting cast is just as interesting as Penelope. Mr. Kramer develops each character a little at a time rather than trying to rush them all together. While there are dwarves and gnomes and typical fantasy elements, they're given their own characteristics rather than being cliche. Well written dialogue adds to each and their personalities are distinct. The world is presented to the reader in the beginning, but not in so much depth that it feels like an exercise in world building rather than the telling of a story. As time goes on, details are filled in. Mr. Kramer does it in such a way that I began to wonder what it would have been like to live in the world in previous times, which is when I realize I'm deep into the story. The battles are intense and I genuinely felt fear for the survival of the characters. Magic and weapons of fantasy were realistic while fantasy creatures such as wyverns and dragons amplified the danger. I'm very much looking forward to future books from Mr. Kramer. This is safe for young adults, with mild fantasy violence.