Mary Stewart The Crystal Cave
William Morrow and Co., Inc.
The Crystal Cave is the story of Merlin's life before he met Arthur. Born the illegitimate grandson of a King of Brittainy believed to be The Prince of Darkness' son. His life is quite lonely and forsaken in the King's household until he meets a man in a cave and begins to glimpse visions of what will be. When his life becomes endangered on the death of the King, he is kidnapped and finds himself in the companionship of a man who seeks to rule Brittainy and Wales. It is this story that will make him the man and prophet he becomes.
I found the story at times heartbreaking. Just when you though Merlin would break from the chaos around him, he rises to the top. He garners the admiration of his strongest critics, his greatest enemies. Fear is also a lasso around him and those he loves.
The characters were larger-than-life and yet, so stunningly portrayed you could almost hear their swords clashing.
The only criticism I have is that at times it was a bit too informative of the history of the period but then I understand that that had to be to tell this story. I look forward to reading the next book in the series, The Hollow Hills.
Chuck Wendig The Kick-Ass Writer
F & W Media
The Kick-Ass Writer makes up 1001 way to write great fiction, get published, and earn your audience. Mr. Wendig shares his wisdom he's learned from the years of writing. I can't say enough good things about the book. It's broken in twenty-five sections of things to do or not do in your writing career. I love his simple sentence: The story is the magic. No truer words were ever spoken. In the day-to-day task of writing these tips will prove invaluable. Nuggets such as why the POV matters, or the three beats of doctor protagonist, and how to handle your blog.
I found the writing to be fun and serious when needed. Warning: he does curse a bit so if that's not your cup of tea--but I think he told it how it was and that's part of who he is.
If I had a criticism, it was only that the book didn't go on longer but then we all have to bring it in at some point. I look forward to reading more craft books by him in the future.
The Magazine of Horror and Suspense Cemetery Dance Issue #72
Cemetery Dance Publications
Includes Summer Thunder by Stephen King, reviewed in earlier post.
The Cambion Stephen Bacon. A female military officer sent to investigate a woman's stoning in the Tibesh Mountains finds herself a victim of an ancient evil.
Truly terrifying. Read with the lights on.
Barn Dance Tim Davis. A haunting tale of love that lingers.
Chasing Ghosts by Richard Thomas. A husband who suspects his wife is unfaithful.
The ending is a stunner.
Anti-Theft by Victorya Chase. A woman suspects her apartment is being broken into and her things replaced.