Author Archives: wedbriefsfic

Wednesday Briefs: March 11, 2020

Here is a list of all the authors flashing this week, along with a brief snippet from their latest free work. Click the link after the snippet to be taken to the complete story on the author’s home page.

Unicorn Quests: Chapter Nineteen by Cia Nordwell

The map showed the mountain range. The town was nestled in its foothills. Did Maize expect us to backtrack over those infernal ridges and peak? I hoped not.

What was this map to? I knew from her information how to find the rough direction to head to find them. Of course I had to find my way back to my mate and young first. I glanced down the road.

Damn it. What to do? Continue on with my plan, keep the same course? I sighed. The first thing to do was get back to my family. I desperately needed to

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Book Review: Bleach, Vol 16 by Tite Kubo

Bleach, Vol 16         

Author: Tite Kubo

Publisher: Viz Media

American release date: December 5, 2006

Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/Manga/Supernatural/208 pages

Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

Reviewer: Julie Lynn Hayes

 

The date of Rukia’s execution keeps getting pushed forward, and now it’s set for noon the next day! The time that was gained on the passage through the Senkaimon will count for nothing if Ichigo doesn’t figure out how to bankai! Without that, he’s doomed to failure!

Hitsugaya finds himself under attack by none other than Hinamori, to his confusion and consternation. She’s found a letter, in the late Captain Aizen’s hand, blaming his death on none other than the captain of the 10th Company. Of course Toshiro is innocent of the charge, but Momo is in no condition to understand that. It doesn’t help that she is being egged on by the ever-smiling Gin Ichimaru.

Meanwhile, Renji has shown up at the place where Ichigo is training. He wants to train there too, to be ready to save Rukia. He informs Ichigo of the change in date of the execution, which causes Yoruichi dismay. But she continues to have faith in Ichigo’s abilities.

Learning of the change, Rukia seems to be accepting of her fate, as her mind turns to a fallen comrade, Assistant Captain Kaien Shiba, the man whose death she is responsible for. Nothing could have changed what happened, and yet she feels guilty for what she did. No wonder Ganju hates her and doesn’t wish to help her. Shiba was his brother.  Captain Ukitake tries to talk to Byakuya, but doesn’t understand his acceptance of Rukia’s fate. His own sister!

Thanks to Kenpachi, Orihime is reunited with Ishida, Chad, and Ganju, but they are confronted by Captain Komamura, Captain Tosen, Hisagi, and Iba. Kenpachi says he’ll take them all on. When Ikkaku and Kumchiki show up, the subordinates go off to fight, leaving the captains to it. For his part, Captain Kyoraku is thinking he’ll be the only one to be yelled at by old man Yama, but he has to do what he feels is right.

The clock is ticking and Rukia’s fate lies in Ichigo’s hands. The backstory of Rukia and Kaien is very poignant and explains much. I enjoy seeing such stories about the characters, which flesh them out. Having already watched the anime, it only adds to my enjoyment and knowledge of them, and sometimes explains things I didn’t realize, or things that went by too fast in the anime.

I like the relationship between Hitsugaya and Hinamori, which never wavers through the series. He is very protective of her, just as Matsumoto is protective of him. The brief scene with Shunsui and Nanao is priceless (in case you hadn’t noticed by now, he is quite my favorite lol).

Of course I already know what’s going on, so I won’t speculate on some things, but it is obvious that there are wheels within wheels. Byakuya’s seeming indifference to his sister’s fate is baffling. Also, what is the health issue which seems to greatly affect Ukitake (if it’s explained in the anime, I missed it). We see little of Ichigo’s companions in this volume, but I found it funny to see both Orihime and Yachiru riding on Kenpachi’s shoulders. Kenny is an interesting man. He lives to fight, without rancor or malice but a simple love of fighting. I would never cross this man, although I suspect he has a good heart deep down, and I love his relationship with Yachiru. Gin is enigmatic as ever, and layered much like an onion. And Komamura with the strange mask – what’s up with that? How does he even see?

Then again, Tosen is blind and he manages, reminding me of Geordi La Forge on Star Trek Next Generation, even down to the visor! The race is on to save Rukia and time is running out. If the hero is going to make a dramatic rescue, he had best do it soon! Another great volume, looking forward to more!

 

 

Book Review: The Time of Contempt (The Witcher series) by Andrzej Sapkowski

The Time of Contempt(The Witcher series)   

Author: Andrzej Sapkowski

Publisher: Orbit

American release date: August 27, 2013

Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/Fantasy/352 pages

Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

Reviewer: Julie Lynn Hayes

 

Geralt is still tracking Rience, and goes to the law offices of Codringher and Fenn, seeking information. He learns that a sorcerer may or may not be controlling Rience, who may or may not be in the service of Nilfgaard. Also, King Foltest is searching for a certain princess. But he has been provided evidence, by a certain specialist, that the princess is, alas, no more, having died three years before of diphtheria in a refugee camp. What does Child of the Elder Blood mean?

Yennefer is riding, along with Ciri, to the Conclave of Mages on the Isle of Thanedd. Hopefully they can do something to end the war, as Nilfgaard is determined to consume everything in its path, and is doing a fine job of it so far. Ciri knows Yennefer is anxious to meet up with Geralt, despite all her protestations to the contrary, which becomes obvious when she stops along at the way at a dwarf bank and asks if there are any letters for her. No letters, but the dwarf Giancardi has interesting information regarding taxation which leads to an understanding of who is backing whom in the current crisis. Ciri begins to realize that Yennfer intends to dump her off at a school. When the sorceress and the banker have secretive business to discuss, Ciri is sent to explore the town of Gors Velen with a junior clerk, Fabio Sachs. Ciri discovers that the school, Aretuza,  is not far from there, on the isle of Thanedd, which she can see from the city. On her return, Ciri meets some old friends of Yennefer.

Having learned where Geralt was last seen, Ciri decides to postpone school and runs away to find him. Dandelion is in Hirundum, waiting for Geralt, observing the proceedings, as is his way. No doubt intending to write an epic song or two. Even Dandelion has no idea why Geralt wants to meet him there and won’t go to the Isle of Thanedd, even though he obviously wants to. Soon, three people meet there, in search of one another. When push comes to shove, will Ciri choose the Witcher or the witch?

Brought together by Ciri, Geralt agrees to accompany Yennefer to the banquet at the Conclave. It’s only  natural for people to be curious about him, and for certain sorceresses to attempt to seduce him. Geralt makes the rounds and meets many people. Geralt ends up spending the night with Yennefer. And because he has a modicum of manners when it comes to relieving himself, the course of events is unexpectedly changed as all hell breaks loose on Thanedd.

Why is Nilfgaard the aggressor in this all-encompassing war? Simple greed, or something more? As is usual at such times, there are those who fight back and those who bow down and those who refuse to take a stand for what is right. Geralt could never be one of those, and neither could Ciri. I’m not so sure about Yennefer. I think she only has her own interests at heart and I’m suspicious of her, especially as regards Geralt and Ciri. Frankly, I think he has terrible taste, at least when it comes to her, for I see nothing to recommend her. Having seen her backstory in the series, I can tell how ruthless and cold she is and I do not trust her at all, and neither do I like her. Ciri is more of a blank canvas, but as her “picture” begins to fill in, I see potential in her. Dandelion is, as usual, a delight. He may not be the brightest man in the land, but he has a good heart. Even if Geralt isn’t overly fond of his singing. Regardless, he’s a good friend to Geralt, the best he has.

This volume of the Witcher series is chock full of intrigue, and it’s really hard to keep track of the players without a score card. Alas, none is provided, so one must muddle through the best one can. It’s still less complicated than the Ice and Fire series, which provided a glossary in the back of each volume. Ciri becomes stronger with each book, and this one is no exception as she finds herself having to survive being portaled to who knows where. She is more resourceful than many young girls of her age, and I have no doubt, she will survive and play a great part in what is to come. Perhaps in the downfall of Nilfgaard itself.

Wheels within wheels within wheels. Alliances forming and breaking. Everywhere death, destruction, and utter chaos. Which tends to bring out a great deal in the worst of people, human and not. Another great book in the series, looking forward to more of the same.

 

 

Wednesday Briefs: March 4, 2020

Here is a list of all the authors flashing this week, along with a brief snippet from their latest free work. Click the link after the snippet to be taken to the complete story on the author’s home page.

Unicorn Quests: Chapter Eighteen by Cia Nordwell

When I least expected it, a reprieve. “Thank you, but I really need the things on the list I gave your partner.”

“Supplies? For more than one person. Are you rescuing others?”

“My mate and foals,” I admitted. “The foals were stolen, then sold. I had to steal them back, but they were being held by trolls who also had a large number of other young Beings. Also picked up something called a locus.”

Maize gasped. “I’m so sorry. Are they okay? You also found a locus? They are rare.”

“You’ve heard of them?”

She nodded. “There’s an enclave west

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Book Review: Soul Eater, Vol 7 by Atshushi Ohkubo

Soul Eater, Vol 7   

Author: Atsushi Ohkubo

Publisher: Yen Press

American release date: November 11, 2014

Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/manga/paranormal/208 pages

Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

 

Now that the crazy Kishin is on the loose, Shinigami-sama is summoning the strongest weapons he can from around the world to locate and contain him. Justin Law, from Western Europe, is a very pious fellow who prays a lot. Azusa is in charge of East Asia and Marie Mjolnir is in charge of Oceania. Marie has visions of being married but never seems to find the right guy. Interestingly, her first love was Dr. Stein! Meanwhile Stein approaches a very dispirited Death Scythe, who is busy polishing candlesticks, and learns he is fearful that he is about to be replaced and sent away and will never be able to see Maka again.  They go to a meeting with Shinigami-sama, along with Azusa and Marie, only to find an oblivious Justin already there. Stein informs the others about the madness wavelength that the Kishin emits, which “prods and incites the madness lying deep within the human soul.” And is quite contagious. Besides this, there are other dangers possible with this wavelength, such as the awakening of dormant witches or the rise of the lost continent of Atlantis, and much more. Shinigami-same reassigns Marie to work with Stein and puts Azusa in charge of Oceania, while holding Justin in reserve for now.

A few of the DWMA students decide to play a little basketball—Kid, Patty and Black Star vs Soul, a reluctant Maka, and Tsubaki—while Stein shows Marie around and she whines about finding a husband. Shinigami-sama wants to talk to Spirit about Stein and asks him to look out for Stein, concerned that the madness wavelength might be affecting him. Afterward, he is pleasantly surprised by Maka’s request to spend time with him, unaware that is the price she has to pay for losing the basketball game.

Shinigami-same decides to admit Crona on a trial enrollment at DWMA. A concerned Sid asks Maka if maybe she can get through to Crona, since Sid hasn’t been able to. Maka reaches out to Crona and introduces him to Marie. Crona still has Ragnarok and he’s still obnoxious but he’s much less powerful and smaller than he was before. Now he’s more annoying than dangerous. A report is received from the Czech Republic about a golem wreaking havoc, so Sid sends Maka and Crona to check it out. Shinigami-sama is concerned as golems are meant to protect, not attack, so he wants Stein’s opinion on what is going on. Stein is alarmed at what he discovers but Shinigami-sama assures him that he has sent a strong ally to aid Maka and Crona.

Things are definitely picking up with Soul Eater, with the arrival of the Death Weapons and dealing with the effects of the Kishin’s escape. Of the three new arrivals, Azusa is the least annoying. Marie whines far too much about wanting to get married, and Justin is in his own little world, with his earbuds and his holier-than-thou attitude. I haven’t made up my mind about Crona, but maybe my feelings toward him are really directed toward Ragnarok, who is an utter creep. We meet another villain in this volume, who seems as though she will be a formidable foe, and we also see the return of an interesting character we’ve met before. Maka’s day with dad was great, and also not entirely unexpected in what she has to deal with. I like Spirit, despite his shortcomings. I know he means well and he loves his daughter, but he can be such a horn dog at times and so immature! The story of Maka and Crona’s trip to the Czech Republic is very interesting, as is the golem itself. All in all, a good volume, looking forward to the next one!

 

 

Wednesday Briefs: February 26, 2020

Here is a list of all the authors flashing this week, along with a brief snippet from their latest free work. Click the link after the snippet to be taken to the complete story on the author’s home page.

Super Trooper #5 (2.1) by Julie Lynn Hayes

Although Chan wasn’t as late to work as he’d feared he would be, even a few minutes was anathema to him. When he walked through the door, expecting to be called out for what he’d done, nobody even seemed to notice he was running behind—or if they did notice, they said nothing to him about it. But he was more than aware of his own tardiness—as well as the very sexy reason for it—so he threw himself into his work, took on extra tasks to help lighten his co-workers’ loads,  and didn’t take his full lunch in order to make up for lost time. He couldn’t afford to stay late, not today. He loved his family, and he wouldn’t do anything to upset either his mother or his little brother, especially on such an important day.

Despite how hard he worked, though, Chandrahas found his mind reverting far too often to the tall blond trooper who’d pulled him over. The one he’d been far too willing to drop to his knees for, although luckily it hadn’t come to that. What was wrong with him?

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Wednesday Briefs: February 19, 2020

Here is a list of all the authors flashing this week, along with a brief snippet from their latest free work. Click the link after the snippet to be taken to the complete story on the author’s home page.

Unicorn Quests: Chapter Sixteen by Cia Nordwell

Walking over the mountain wasn’t the best idea with two foals—one wounded—but it was better than going backward toward the cave and trolls. I wanted to stay as far away from the road near where the cave had been as possible. Who knew if the beasts had other partners who would come for the kidnapped Beings?

There had to have been a reason they’d taken so many. Humans caught Beings, especially young ones, in order to kill them in their attempts to purify the planet. They killed them.

They didn’t do whatever the boss, or master, or whoever-the-hell

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