The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 12

Welcome to Day 12 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something from or about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 12, here we go!

Steven Baird’s Blog: Ordinary Handsome

There’s nothing ordinary about Steven’s blog. He doesn’t post often, but when he does, I’m soaking it up. Steven is a writer who shares stunning pieces of prose and poetry as well as peeks into his work in progress. He’s one of the authors I try to emulate. I drool a little over his lush imagery and the exquisite emotional depth of his work. His glimpses into character are breathtaking.

See what I mean… drooling again. Lol.

I’ve read everything Steven writes, and I hear there’s a new book floating around out there on the horizon. I can’t wait. Here’s my review of one of my all-time favorite books:

Ordinary Handsome by Steven Baird

My Review: I just finished this book and sit here collecting my thoughts. From the first page, I knew I had happened upon something special, something that would sweep me into the otherworld offered by a talented author and his beautifully written book.

The story is grim, about the dying lives that labor on in the dying town of Handsome, Oklahoma. Ghosts in a ghost town. The book follows ordinary men dealing with the epic struggles that shape human experience: love and death, failure, fathering, poverty, murder, and lost hope. It revolves around a young man, Euart Monroe Wasson, and the men who participate in the tragedy made of his life.

The narrative isn’t one to speed through. Baird writes with a style that requires one to pay attention. He slowly draws aside the veils that reveal the interconnection of each man’s story. I had the impression that I was piecing together a mosaic, the tale assembled from the shards of shattered lives, memories, impressions, and illusions.

The narrative is informal and appropriate to the rural landscape. At the same time, the writing is textured, rife with precise detail, stunning imagery, and raw emotion. Baird is a master at finding the perfect word and painting a picture that shifts and clears with each new perspective.

I highly recommend Ordinary Handsome to any reader who wants to get lost in an exquisitely written tale. This book will stick to your heart.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Steven’s blog: Ordinary Handsome.

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 11

Welcome to Day 11 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something from or about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 11, here we go!

V. M. Sang’s Blog: Dragon’s Rule OK

Vivienne writes both fantasy and historical fiction and many of her books are grouped into series. She and I both discovered a love of reading through Tolkien, one shared reason for our dive into fantasy. Her blog is a place where you can find book reviews, reblogs of interesting writing-related articles, posts about her books and works in progress, as well as a wealth of other information that interests her.

I’ve read both books from her historical fiction series set in the age of Vikings. Her research shows her love of the time period, and her covers are stunning. Here’s one of my reviews:

Jealousy of a Viking by V. M. Sang

My Review: This historical fiction takes place around the year 860 AD when Danes and Saxons were occupying Britain. Helgha is a young woman who falls in love with Erik, a man above her status. With marriage out of the question, Erik kills her father and sweeps Helgha away to become his bed slave. In love with him, Helgha complies and bears him two sons. And when Erik weds someone of his own class, Helgha begins a devious journey of sabotaging his wife’s pregnancies. Her actions set off a cascade of tragedies.

I’m happy to say that, though jealousy and wicked thoughts follow her for most of the book, Helgha has an arc that allows her to mature and find redemption. She’s a deeply drawn character, and when she finds her heart and inner strength, it’s refreshing. As she matured and became a kinder person, I connected more with her than I did in the beginning. I didn’t like either of the men she loved (due to their treatment of women), but they did feel realistic.

At the end of the book, the author shares some of her research regarding historical events, as well as some cultural details (both researched and speculated). The book focuses on the role of women as the bearers of sons. True to life at the time, the trials of pregnancy, birth, and miscarriage occur frequently within the read, but there’s also lots of action and danger that kept me flipping the pages.

A subplot of Helgha’s shifting religious beliefs is exceptionally done and felt quite authentic. The pace moved at a good clip, and I found excuses to keep reading. Recommended for readers who enjoy historical fiction, especially regarding Vikings in Britain.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Viv’s blog: Dragons Rule OK

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 10

Welcome to Day 10 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something from or about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 10, here we go!

Balroop Singh’s Blog: Emotional Shadows

If you head over to Balroop’s blog, you’ll find beautiful poetry, often with accompanying imagery. She writes free-form poetry as well as structured poems, including syllabic styles. Balroop is prolific. She responds to weekly challenges, and her poems, though often light and airy, also swing to dark and emotional. Balroop is generous in her support of the writing community, hosting tours and sharing her thoughtful reviews.

Balroop has published seven extensive poetry collections, and I’ve read them all. She also has three self-help books from earlier in her publishing career.

A review of her latest collection:

Hues of Hope by Balroop Singh

My Review: Singh’s latest collection of free-form poetry includes about 100 poems on the subject of hope. They cover a wide range of perspectives, emotions, and sources of hope, found within us as well as out in the world. The hope found in nature, in memories, and in love are prevalent in the first three sections of the book.

In the second half of the collection, hope becomes more complex and entangled with pain, disappointment, and longing, among other less cheery emotions and experiences. It was within these more nuanced explorations that I found some of my favorite poems.

A few memorable poems were “I Have Understood”, “I Know You!” and “Now I Understand You!” Below are the first three stanzas of “Who Are You” from the section Beams of Love:

Who Are You?

Once again dusk descended
Alone she sat in deep thought
One more gorge
That seemed to devour her.

Love entered from the back door
Sat by her side and smiled
She couldn’t recognize the stranger
So she asked: “Who are you?”

“You knew me at birth
You stretched your arms
For me, you cried
When I didn’t embrace you…

Highly recommended to readers who enjoy free-form poetry around a complex theme, including the light and whimsical as well as the poignant and painful.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Balroop’s blog: Emotional Shadows.

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 9

Welcome to Day 9 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something short and different about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 9, here we go!

Harmony Kent’s Blog: Dissonance

Harmony has a fascinating backstory as a person, and very active blog with book reviews, new releases, short stories, and poems. She’s also an award-winning author and a member of the team at Story Empire, a place where she shares her writing knowledge for the benefit of other writers.

She writes in multiple genres from fantasy to post-apocalyptic sci-fi, thrillers, mysteries, and erotica (to name a few). She also has a couple of anthologies of poetry that I highly recommend: Slices of Soul and Life & Soul. I haven’t read all the books in her long list yet, but I’m working on it.

Here’s my review of her first poetry collection:

Slices of Soul by Harmony Kent

My Review: I picked up this book after learning that the author spent 13 years in a Zen Buddhist Temple. I was curious about how her experiences influenced her poetry. The poems are divided into seven sections beginning with Shaved Head, Short Hair, and Long Hair, representing the journey from the monastery back into modern life.

“The Path”

The ten directions all merge into one
this winding road leads nowhere
and goes straight there

Many of the poems read like koans, statements used for meditation. The poems are simply written and it’s easy to appreciate how they reflect of the author’s journey of change and discovery. Several favorites are Rebirth, Diamonds, Waterfall, and The Alchemist. A lovely collection that I read in less than an hour.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Harmony’s blog: Dissonance

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 8

Welcome to Day 8 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something short and different about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 8, here we go!

Marcia Meara’s Blog: The Write Stuff

Marcia’s blog is a great place to be a guest, much like I am today. In fact, her logline is “Writers helping writers.” She offers her site for Guest Post Tuesdays, and she runs some wonderful features like Ten Things You May Not Know About (blogger), and First Line Fridays. She shares some great humor every week as well as updates on her projects and life in general.

She’s also a writer of some outstanding books (Wake Robin Ridge series and Riverbend series) mostly suspenseful thrillers with a bit of the paranormal thrown in. She’ll make you fall in love with her characters. Naturally, I’ve read all her books!

Here’s my review of an all-time favorite:

A Boy Named Rabbit by Marcia Meara

My Review: I fell in love with a little boy named Rabbit. OMG. This book is so wonderful, I can’t recommend it enough. Rabbit is ten years old, and for his entire life, he’s lived in the deep forest of the Blue Ridge Mountains with his grandparents. They took him there when he was a baby to keep him safe from the “bad people.” When his grandparents die, he starts a solo journey to find a place he belongs.

Rabbit enters the lives of Sarah and Mac Cole and what follows is a story of love, loss, and discovery as Rabbit learns about a whole new world. He’s never seen electricity in action or ridden in a car or listened to music! He’s an amazing character—inquisitive, funny, heartbroken, and wise beyond his years. As Rabbit transforms, the characters around him transform as well.

There’s danger in this book, a bit of paranormal “sight,” and kindness galore. My investment in Rabbit was intense, and I couldn’t stop rooting for him. Though Rabbit is the star of this literary show, the other characters are well-rounded and emotionally authentic. The writing is exceptional with spot-on dialog and an excellent pace. I couldn’t put the book down and got all teary with happiness at the end.

Though this is Book 2 in the Wake-Robin Ridge series, I’m not sure it’s necessary to read Book 1 first, though it wouldn’t hurt. I enjoyed that book too. Interested in something thoroughly original, engaging, and tender? A Boy Named Rabbit will steal your heart.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Marcia’s blog: The Write Stuff.

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 7

Welcome to Day 7 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers. My hosts are bloggers who are always willing to lend a hand, share a laugh, and build a friendship.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something short and different about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 7, here we go!

Jacqui Murray’s Blog: Word Dreams

Jacqui’s popular blog is a wonderful resource for writers. She’s a voracious reader and reviewer of indie books, and she posts all kinds of writing tips including technical solutions, genre information, and lists of descriptive words, to name a few.

She’s also a writer, and though she’s written modern-day suspense novels, she’s since found her niche in the fascinating genre of prehistoric fiction with trilogies taking place at 850,000 and 1.8 million years ago. Her research shines and the stories are nothing like anything I’ve read before. Needless to say, I’ve read all of her books!

I’m currently reading an advanced copy of Natural Selection (Dawn of Humanity, Book 3). Here’s my review of Book One and a great place to start:

Born in a Treacherous Time by Jacqui Murray

My Review: Move over Jean Auel (Clan of the Cave Bear) for Jacqui Murray. I went to bed right after dinner last night because I had to finish this book and would have stayed up all night to do it. What a fabulous read.

Born in a Treacherous Time takes place at the very start of mankind’s development – we are inventive, communal, thoughtful, emotional beings, but still deeply rooted in our animal origins, fully integrated into the harsh volcanic landscape and with the creatures who share our world. Survival is an ongoing challenge and hunger a constant companion. Overlaying the struggles of daily life is the threat of man-who-preys, the next generation of mankind.

The story follows Lucy (Woo-See) through a period of years. She’s a strong character, a healer, and a hunter who’s eager to learn new skills that make her an asset to her group as well as an outsider. There are a number of compelling characters, fully developed and distinct, with a wide range of personalities.

No doubt, Murray did her research, but so little is known about this time, that I’m certain she had to employ her imagination as well. The world-building is meticulous. Murray deftly presents a world as seen through the eyes of those who inhabit it. She created words (and hand signals) to describe the landscape based on the characters’ observations: “Night Sun” instead of moon, “Fire Mountain” instead of volcano. Her attention to creating a logical and detailed reality is stunning. I was honestly enthralled.

The world-building extends to characters as well, and I loved that none of them had “modern” sensibilities that would have tainted the story’s believability. No one is squeamish about raw food or bodily functions, and death is viewed as a natural occurrence. The characters have many of the natural abilities and acute senses of the animals living around them, yet unlike their animal cousins, their understanding of the world grows with each experience.

Best of all, as a reader I became quite attached to these primitive humans, empathizing with their struggles, losses, and choices. There is a depth of emotion, spirit of community, and generous nobility that stretches through the hundreds of thousands of years to our current lives. A captivating book that I recommend to any reader who enjoys adventures, exquisite world-building, or works of historical fiction and prehistory.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Jacqui’s blog: Word Dreams.

Calvin & Hobbes by Sam Watterson

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 6

Welcome to Day 6 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers. My hosts are bloggers who are always willing to lend a hand, share a laugh, and build a friendship.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something short and different about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 6, here we go!

Elizabeth Gauffreau’s Author Blog

Liz and I both have roots going back to Vermont, and something about her stories, photos, and poetry always strike a chord with me. She writes fiction and poetry and says she’s “drawn to the inner lives of other people–what they care about, what they most desire, what causes them pain, what brings them joy.” That certainly describes her beautiful writing. You can also find interesting book reviews at her place.

She has two books in publication and a bunch of writings in literary journals and magazines. I’ve read both of her books and followed the links to many of her stories, all of which I can highly recommend.

Here’s my review of Liz’s poetry book:

Grief Songs by Elizabeth Gauffreau

My Review: This book of poetry is no more than a half-hour read, but what a lovely way to spend my time. Most of the poems are tankas, short syllabic forms of five lines, and Gauffreau is a master of this style. The collection is a beautiful tribute to the author’s family and includes heart-wrenching, poignant, humorous, and sweet poems about childhood, family, love, and loss. Grief is the thread that connects the poems together, sometimes overtly, but more frequently as a remembrance of treasured moments with people missing in Gauffreau’s life.

A family photo precedes each poem, and the combination of the two adds depth to both. Though the poems are intensely personal to the author, it was easy to relate many of the experiences to my own family and the universal human journey that families undertake. I jotted down my favorite titles and suddenly realized I’d written down half the book. I highly recommend this short collection to readers who enjoy poetry that speaks to the heart.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Liz’s blog: Elizabeth Gauffreau.

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 5

Welcome to Day 5 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers. My hosts are bloggers who are always willing to lend a hand, share a laugh, and build a friendship.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something short and different about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more tour sites, the more entries!

Day 5, here we go!

Pete Springer’s Author Blog

Pete was an elementary school teacher for much/most of his working career, and it’s easy to see how much he loved his work. He’s a people-person, often sharing personal stories about kindness and the people who have made a difference in his life as well as the lives of others. It’s hard not to be inspired by Pete’s big heart.

He’s also the author of a book that shares the wisdom he gained from years of classroom experience. And I have the inside scoop that he has a middle-grade fiction book due out in the near future.

Here’s my review of Pete’s book about teaching:

They Call Me Mom: Making a Difference as an Elementary School Teacher by Pete Springer

My Review: I was impressed with this highly accessible, entertaining, and informative read. A long-time educator, Springer shares his practical experience and the wisdom gleaned from working with children within the educational system. My impression was that the book is geared toward new teachers as it offers ideas about setting up a classroom, dealing with colleagues, administrators, students, and parents.

As an early childhood mental health counselor, I was most interested in Springer’s thoughts about discipline. I was glad to discover a thoughtful, holistic approach to children and their challenges in light of the stressors in their lives. Springer highlights a number of strategies that would be helpful to parents as well as to educators.

Most of the chapters provide concrete and anecdotal examples of Springer’s approach in action. He touches on cultural diversity, grief, problem-solving, and other life experiences that are part of a child’s broader education. My favorite chapters were Memorable Students and Funny Moments at School. These two chapters are testaments to his success as an educator as well as to the joy and value of teaching in general.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Pete’s blog: Pete Springer’s Author Blog.

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 4

Welcome to Day 4 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope you enjoy:

~ A lovely community of bloggers. My hosts are bloggers who are always willing to lend a hand, share a laugh, and build a friendship.

~ My favorite book from my host’s list, along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile. 

~ Something short and different about The Necromancer’s Daughter (follow the link below).

~ Leave a comment on my hosts’ sites, and your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more sites, the more entries!

Day 4, here we go!

Teri Polen’s Blog: Books and Such

Teri is an author of sci-fi and horror short stories and novels, and she recently released the second book in The Colony Series (The Insurgent), which I highly recommend. She’s also an avid book reviewer of indie books as well as books acquired through NetGalley. She leans toward sci-fi, fantasy, suspense, horror, thrillers, and mysteries, but her reviews certainly aren’t limited to those genres. She keeps my kindle on the chunky side.

I’ve caught her short stories in anthologies, and I’ve read all of her books. I wish she’d write them faster! Here’s my review of the first book in her The Colony duology:

Subject A36 (The Colony Series) by Teri Polen

My Review: I should never have read this book, because now I have to wait for the next one in the series, and that’s going to be torture! This read is sooo good.

Asher, the first-person protagonist, is a 17-year-old member of a resistance group fighting the Colony. The Colony steals attractive children (and adults) from outlying communities and kills them by stripping their DNA to serve the vanity of its citizens. Asher’s group is part of a larger network focused on freeing Colony captives before their DNA is harvested.

The plot moves along quickly and requires some suspension of belief as these teens have exceptional skills. There are twists and turns and secrets that I didn’t see coming and thoroughly enjoyed. This isn’t a story that gets bogged down with description. The science and technology are developed just enough to be believable.

The characters are beautifully crafted, and there’s none of the annoying teen angst and dumb choices that I find in many YA stories. These characters are in dangerous situations and maturity is a matter of survival. I enjoyed the authenticity. The somewhat heavy backstory in the beginning pays off as the characters develop and the events become more and more emotionally charged. Asher, his friend Noah, and lover Brynn make up the three main characters. I liked all three but was particularly enamored with Asher. I thoroughly believed his inner world, emotions, and choices. He’s a noble character, faced with tough decisions. I was hooked.

Then the book ended with a cliffhanger, and I had a literary heart attack. Highly recommended to YA and adult readers of sci-fi. Get ready for an intense adventure.

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Teri’s blog: Books and Such.

The Necromancer’s Daughter Book Tour: Day 3

Welcome to Day 3 of The Necromancer’s Daughter’s Book Tour!

I hope that each tour stop offers something fresh and fun. Here’s what you can expect:

~ A lovely community of bloggers. My hosts are bloggers who are always willing to lend a hand, share a laugh, and build a friendship. Enjoy!

~ They’re talented too!  Before I send you off to each tour stop, I’ll share my favorite book from the blogger’s list along with my review.

~ Something to make you smile.  I’ve been collecting memes to leave you with a grin.

~ You’ll find something short and different about The Necromancer’s Daughter: a snippet, a tidbit about a character, some thoughts about the story, or the struggle writing it. (Follow the link below).

~ And last but not least, if you comment on my host’s site, your name will be entered in an end-of-tour drawing for a $50 Amazon gift certificate. The more sites, the more entries!

Day 3, here we go!

Author D. L. Finn’s Blog

Denise is a writer and poet who’s also a voracious book reader and reviewer. Her love of nature and its creatures comes through loud and clear in her stories and poetry, as does her gracious, positive spirit. She’s a member of the Story Empire where she shares her expertise on the craft of writing through a wide range of articles. Her blog is a great source for indie book reviews, info on new releases, and her own syllabic poetry.

I’ve read almost all of her books, and she writes in a wide range of genres from poetry collections to horror, suspense, and gentle YA tales.  Here’s her latest:

A Voice in the Silence by D. L. Finn

My Review: Drea, a recent widow, lives alone in her home far from town. There’s a serial killer roaming the area and a winter storm on the way. But what initially finds its way into her home isn’t a murderer, but a trio of animals who’ve escaped from a lab—a dog, a cat, and a rat. And before she knows it, they’re doing things that no animals should be able to do. They talk.

Suspension of disbelief was a necessity for this book. In some ways, the fantastical abilities of the animals gave the story a whimsical, childlike innocence. But that quality is countered by the presence of a serial killer outside in the storm, and the suspense intensifies when Drea finds his footprints in the snow. With the help of her animal family, a ghost, and a caring police officer, she just might get through the storm alive.

Three major plot lines thread through the story, and each comes to its own satisfying climax rather than all resolving at the end. The main protagonists are well-rounded characters, and that includes the animals. My favorites were Drea, Adam, and Charlie the dog. The villains range from mentally ill to completely deranged. The story unfolds primarily from Drea’s perspective though the overall POV is omniscient.

The pace is good, and the descriptions gave a clear picture of the action and setting. There’s a romantic undercurrent and some violence, including an off-stage suicide. Overall, I’d say this book is suitable for YA and adult audiences, and I recommend it to readers who enjoy paranormal stories and want to try something whimsical, suspenseful, and entirely different

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If you have a chance, head on over to join The Necromancer’s Daughter tour at Denise’s blog: Author D. L. Finn.