Book Excerpt Nature of the Witch

Book Excerpt

Thanky ou to Majanka for letting me visit her blog on my blog tour. This extract is taken from a part of the story where Kiera is beginning to feel more confident with her powers. Here she is sneaking out of the house to perform a spell that she can’t tell anyone about, especially Jack who is charged with trying to protect her.

Before she slipped on her shoes she held them out in her hands and whispered, “Give me silence, like a fall of snow that no one should hear me wherever I go.”

Then she scattered some small stones across her duvet. She had enchanted them earlier in the day so that, hopefully, they would give the illusion to anyone who entered the room that someone was in the bed. The bed still looked empty to her, but then it probably only worked on others so there was no way for her to know.

She opened her bedroom door and peered out. It was 11 o’clock. She wondered briefly what Jack had decided to do and felt guilty. She didn’t like lying and she wished she was seeing the New Year in with him. As she thought of him a smile crept to her lips. After her first impressions of Jack, who would’ve thought she would actually enjoy his company?

She didn’t meet anyone as she left the house. The living room was in darkness so perhaps Jack had decided to go to bed. Outside it was cold and she pulled her coat tighter. She had a strong urge to turn back and crawl into her cosy bed, but she bowed her head against the wind and strode quickly forward. If she didn’t do this tonight she would have to wait another year.

The words in her book played around in her mind, ‘do not be fooled by the beauty of this flower for it carries a darkness within.’ She would need to be careful, what exactly did that mean? What could the plant contain?

She glanced around at the thick black that surrounded her. Her only light came from a soft, patchy glow, emitted from the few stars that managed to escape from behind the clouds; the same clouds which had blocked the sun all day now did the same with the moon, which meant she could only see a couple of feet in front.

The cold bit at any exposed skin from her nose to her fingertips. Despite the added layers she was wearing it seeped into her clothing. She shivered and moved a little quicker across the frosty grass, which should have crunched under foot but remained eerily silent due to her spell.

She’d had a last minute change of plan. She had spent the week researching into local ancient trees and had picked out a location, but whilst shooting with Jack she’d had a change of heart. As they were leaving she had spotted an oak tree hidden between the other trees.   She wasn’t entirely sure of its age and she hadn’t found it listed anywhere as an ancient tree. However, one thing Mags and Kitto had both taught her was to trust her intuition, and her intuition told her that this tree was old. She felt sure that it could help her.

Kiera wasn’t the only one moving silently through the darkness. He had no need of spells. He had learnt to be as one with the night many moons ago, at a time when the earth was much younger. He didn’t need to see Kiera to know where she walked, he could smell her. He smelt the blood in her veins and his body shuddered in anticipation. It had been so long since he had tasted the sweetness of a witch’s blood, there was nothing like it. He knew he should wait. It wasn’t time yet. After all, she wasn’t fully trained, so there would be no fight, and the battle was half the fun. But the waiting was getting harder, especially at times such as this when she was so close.

Witches thought they could harness nature when, in reality, he was nature. He and his kind were the embodiment of nature, in all its savagery. There were none more powerful. He had proved that before and he would prove it again.

The more he thought about the witch the more he liked his plan. Tonight was the night, there would be no more waiting. He would rip off the witch’s head to show the Gwithiaz before he slaughtered them too. He could almost taste the blood on his lips and he quickened his pace.

Nature of the Witch

Many years ago, magic prevailed in Britain. It was a time when chosen women followed a path forged by Mother Nature herself; a time of witchcraft, of the brotherhood of the Gwithiaz and of the terrifying Creatures.

This has all passed from memory a long time ago. But now, magic has returned. Kiera is the first witch the world has seen in centuries, while Jack must learn the ways of the Gwithiaz. They must not only master their crafts, but also overcome their differences and work together if they are to survive the dark enemy that lurks in the shadows.
In the rugged Cornish landscape where it first began, the two face the dreaded Kasadow: an ancient evil that has awakened and is ready to destroy them, and their magic, once and for all.

Purchase Linkhttps://t.co/tZGe3wZfY5

Author Bio

Helen lives in the UK with her husband, two children and one diva-like cat called Tiger. Helen, like many others, was captivated in her childhood by books from the likes of Roald Dahl and Enid Blyton and any books which took her to new worlds and showed her places of magic and mystery. She has enjoyed writing and creating her own magical worlds from a young age. She is currently writing the second book in the ‘Nature of the Witch’ trilogy which will be out soon.

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Book Review: Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them

41899Title: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Author: J.K. Rowling

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Age Group: Young Adult

Rating: 3,5 stars

Purchase: Amazon

A copy of Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them resides in almost every wizarding household in the country. Now Muggles too have the chance to discover where the Quintaped lives, what the Puffskein eats and why it is best not to leave milk out for a Knarl.
Proceeds from the sale of this book will go to Comic Relief, which means that the pounds and Galleons you exchange for it will do magic beyond the powers of any wizard. If you feel that this is insufficient reason to part with your money, I can only hope that passing wizards feel more charitable if they see you being attacked by a Manticore.
– Albus Dumbledore

First, a word of warning. If you’re not a die-hard Harry Potter fan, this book isn’t for you. You’ll probably dislike it. It’s, in short, a run down of the fantastical beasts you come across and hear about when reading the Harry Potter books, where they live, how dangerous they are, and some characteristics. There’s no adventure, no story – this is the book Harry had to study in one of his classes.

It doesn’t make for very exciting reading, but as a Harry Potter fan, it’s still fun to read about these monsters. The best part about the book is that it belonged to Harry Potter (or so it says) and there are notes added by Harry and Ron. It’s a cute touch and makes the book all that more fun to read.

If you don’t like Harry Potter, I doubt you’ll like this book, but if you are a Harry Potter fan (like every sane person on this planet) then I would recommend you give it a shot.

 
 

Book Review: Gifted by Donald Hounam

23346995Title: Gifted

Author: Donald Hounam

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Age Group: Young Adult

Rating: 5 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The Bishop of Oxford is very, very dead. At least the police think it’s the Bishop – it’s impossible to be sure, since someone has made off with his head.
Fifteen-year-old Frank Sampson is the forensic sorcerer on the case. But he is easily distracted. By Kazia, the supposed victim’s beautiful, and possibly dangerous, niece. By Marvo, his police colleague, who seems dead set on making his life difficult. By the terror that he’s losing his Gift – the ability to work magic. And by all those stupid rules which get in the way of proving that everybody is wrong about the case . . . except Frank.
Donald Hounam has wrought a sharp, exciting, original new voice in teen fiction.

Gifted is an intriguing novel about fifteen-year-old Frank Sampson, a forensic sorcerer who would like nothing more than to be left alone, but as one of the most promising pupils of the academy he graduated from, he’s often enrolled in work for the police force. This time around, he gets to help solve the murder of the Bishop of Oxford, who seems to be missing his head. Yet from the moment he arrives, Frank wonders if the body even belongs to the Bishop, and he gets a bad feeling about all of it. Especially about working alongside Marvo, his police colleague, who is about his age and has the keen ability to spot things others can’t. In a world where grown ups slowly go blind or completely lose the ability to see by the time they hit thirty, spotting things others can’t, is high in demand.

Frank is Gifted, which means he has the ability to perform magic. As a forensic sorcerer, he can do things like see it the head matches the body, how long the person has been dead, and all kind of things. Magic also doesn’t happen “just like that” – rituals and spells are needed. It’s all rather elaborate, and that’s what I like about it. It’s so completely unlike magic in other books. This magic needs incantations and spells and complex rituals – it’s not like the Harry Potter books where characters just wave a wand. Also, the book has a much darker undertone, with the mention of necromancers, of raising the dead, and of course, the murder waiting to be solved. “Who killed the Bishop and why” is the number one question throughout the book, but meanwhile we’re introduced to this amazing world of magic and witchcraft.

The world building and setting is the main reason why I gave this book five stars. I loved all of it. Seriously. From the spells, the summoning of demons and how that works, to Frank’s work place, to how the whole magic society works, to how outsiders deal with the gifted, everything about it makes sense. The book reminded me a lot of Lockwood & Co, another favorite of mine, but whereas Lockwood & Co deals with ghosts, and practically turned the whole world ghost lore upside down, Gifted does the same but with magic.

The characters are a mixed bag. Frank is spotless – I mean, he has tons and tons of flaws stacked upon even more flaws, but this makes him perfect. So human. So broken. Then we’ve got Marvo, who is flawed too, and who makes a great sidekick for Frank. I wasn’t too fond of Frank’s apparent infatuation for Kazia, the Bishop’s niece. He saw her once and fell head over heels for her – but then again, Frank is fifteen, and falling randomly in love is common for people that age, so I didn’t mind that much.

If you want an original magic system, and an intriguing setting, I would highly recommend this book. One of the most unique fantasy books I’ve read in years.