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Review: “Stolen Magic,” Linsey Hall

Pros: Some high stakes; kick-ass protagonist Cons: A bit formulaic Rating: 4 out of 5 Stolen Magic (Dragon’s Gift: The Huntress Book 3) is the third installment in Linsey Hall’s fun urban fantasy/paranormal series. When book one opened, three fifteen-year-old

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Review: “Mirror Mage,” Linsey Hall

Pros: World-building; tense action Cons: A bit formulaic Rating: 4 out of 5 Linsey Hall’s Mirror Mage (Dragon’s Gift: The Huntress Book 2) is just plain fun to read. Cass and her sisters-by-choice Del and Nix are FireSouls–they can absorb

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Review: “Ancient Magic,” Linsey Hall

Pros: World-building and plot Cons: Awkward start Rating: 4 out of 5 Linsey Hall’s Ancient Magic (Dragon’s Gift: The Huntress Book 1) was recommended to me by a friend, and I’m glad of that recommendation! It begins with three girls

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Short Take: “The Sleep Tight Motel,” Lisa Unger

Pros: Vivid, melancholy, and beautiful Cons: … Rating: 5 out of 5 Lisa Unger’s novella The Sleep Tight Motel (Dark Corners collection) is hauntingly beautiful. Eve is on the run from her abusive boyfriend Erik after unwillingly helping him to

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Review: “Band on the Run: Rock Band Fights Evil Vols. 1-3,” D.J. Butler

Pros: Utterly fantastic third story; great set-up Cons: Some inconsistencies Rating: 4 out of 5 D.J. Butler’s Band on the Run: Rock Band Fights Evil Vols. 1-3 is amusingly creative and unusual. The rock band in question changes its name

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Review: “Selected Stories: Horror and Dark Fantasy,” Kevin J. Anderson

Pros: Some gripping stories Cons: Breaks in mood Rating: 4 out of 5 Kevin J. Anderson’s Selected Stories: Horror and Dark Fantasy is definitely good, but I preferred his Selected Stories: Science Fiction Volume 1. There’s a handful of stories

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Review: “Residue,” Steve Diamond

Pros: Interesting premise Cons: Main character lacks agency; doesn’t make me want to read more Rating: 2.5 out of 5 Steve Diamond’s Residue (Jack Bishop) (Volume 1) follows Jack Bishop, a teenager in high school whose father disappears under mysterious

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Short Take: “Miao Dao,” Joyce Carol Oates

Pros: Utterly engrossing Cons: … Rating: 5 out of 5 Joyce Carol Oates’s novella Miao Dao (Dark Corners collection) is a surreal story about an adolescent girl who’s having a hard time with her blossoming figure. She tries her best

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Review: “Sparrow Hill Road,” by Seanan McGuire

Pros: Fascinating worldbuilding and characters Cons: … Rating: 5 out of 5 Seanan McGuire’s Sparrow Hill Road is about Rose Marshall, a ghost who’s been sweet 16 for decades. She’ll forever wear the prom dress she died in, and she

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Review: “The 53rd Card,” Virginia Weiss

Pros: Unusual and fascinating Cons: A bit… odd Rating: 3.5 out of 5 In The 53rd Card: A Dark Tale about Finding Light, by Virginia Weiss, Emma accidentally summons the Devil to her home. She doesn’t make a bargain with

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