THE HERETIC (Templar Chronicles #1) by @Jnassise #Paranormal #Thriller #fridayreads

The Heretic (Templar Chronicles, #1)The Heretic by Joseph Nassise
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Heretic is book #1 of The Templar Chronicles, a paranormal urban fantasy series.

The Knights Templar have long been documented throughout history and many stories woven about their survival in the modern world.

In this book, a Templar stronghold in Connecticut is mysteriously attacked. There are no visible signs of; entry, skirmish or attack, but all the Knights are killed.

Cade Williams and his elite team are called in; a Templar Knight known as the “Heretic”, Cade has the power of sight which he has used on many occasions during military operations. To his trusted team he adds Sean Duncan.

More Templar strongholds are attacked. Cade can read spiritually from recent people or places, but his team find few clues until Cade visits the “beyond”, a place where spirits dwell. He asks the shade of a Knight for help.

Duncan’s eyes are opened to a whole new form of combat—this new enemy employs paranormal entities as soldiers. Cade has been fighting these beings for some time; his wife was taken from him during a violent attack by a supernatural being. Cade was left with deep permanent scars, his psychic powers woken and revenge driving him forward.

Cade’s team discover that a secret group of Knights are protectors of precious relics owned by the Vatican. The Necromancer leading these attacks is after a spear renowned for the power it gives to its master. With the target known, an exciting battle unfolds for the reader.

I’m always interested in stories involving the Knights Templar; throw in a good paranormal mix of ghosts, demons and psychometry to the thriller storyline and it works for me. The military battle scenes were of less interest to me, but I can see their use in opening the book to a wider audience. There are plenty of loose ends for the series to continue, and I shall look forward to more visits to the “beyond” and more adventures against The Adversary.

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Book Description

Boston SWAT officer Cade Williams didn’t believe in the supernatural until a chance meeting with a fallen angel left his wife dead and him hanging on to life by the thinnest of margins. When he was discharged from the hospital he discovered that not only was he scarred, body and soul, but that the encounter had left him with a few otherworldly talents of his own.

Now, several years later, Knight Commander Cade Williams runs the elite Templar combat unit known as the Echo Team, which puts him in the perfect position to search for the creature that so viciously attacked him and his family that night. His efforts yield little success, however, until a cabal of necromancers attempts to seize an ancient Templar artifact for their own nefarious purposes and gives him the first real lead he’s had in ages. Cade sets out to find the necromancers and, through them, the Adversary, only to encounter something much worse…

About the author

Joseph Nassise

Joseph Nassise is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than a twenty-five novels, including the Templar Chronicles series, the Jeremiah Hunt trilogy, and the Great Undead War series. He has also written several books in the Rogue Angel action/adventure series from Gold Eagle. He is a former president of the Horror Writers Association, the world’s largest organization of professional horror writers, and a multiple Bram Stoker Award and International Horror Guild Award nominee. 

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Angelic Business 1 Pink Matters by Olga Miret @OlgaNM7

Angelic Business 1. Pink MattersAngelic Business 1. Pink Matters by Olga Núñez Miret
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Angelic Business 1 Pink Matters is book #1 in this #YA series involving Angels and Demons. Petra is an ordinary teenager who prefers to be called Pink, she’s not part of the “in” crowd and someone most boys tend to see past. She’d like to mean more to her friend Seth, but he insults her by offering to be a sympathetic date should she ever need one.

Together with her best friends Sylvia and Lorna, Pink hatches a plan to make Seth jealous and it’s more than a coincidence when new boy G turns up at school and refuses to be interested in any of the popular crowd.

Pink can’t quite believe that G has only eyes for her and she’s very doubtful about his intensions. It takes a lot of persuading for Pink to accept his word and even then the goal posts keep moving and she is left angry and confused.

At times the storyline is slowed with repetition of events and conversations. The tale will continue in the next book.

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The Griffin’s Boy by Julia Hughes

The Griffin's Boy (The Griffin Riders)The Griffin’s Boy by Julia Hughes

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Having previously read the Griffin Cryer, I was delighted to be able to read The Griffin’s Boy, a companion book which tells us the story behind the Griffin Rider. Balkind is a young Griffin selected for special training, but a mishap with one of the new recruits put his training chances at risk. Neb is that boy who grooms the Griffins and he is determined to help Balkind.

Disobeying orders, Neb and Balkind set off to follow Griffin Master Romulus, but on the way they end up making a daring rescue of a young boy from the village of Darkling. By the time the Griffin Master arrives in the village Neb and Balkind are heroes. They make new friends and soon Neb finds himself disobeying more orders in a desperate attempt to save Samara from danger and a very unpleasant marriage.

There are some great details about the Griffins, their wings, feathers and flight veins, plus we get to read about how the Griffins patrol the ancient Ley lines, sensing the energy from the lines and keeping demons at bay. You can almost feel the magic that flows from Balkind when he faces and destroys a demon.

This book was a pleasure to read, Julia Hughes has written another great book.

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Julia will be joining us on the blog tomorrow as our guest author.

Beyond Demons and Protectors by Christian Brown

Beyond Demons and Protectors (Beyond Heights and Depths Trilogy, Book 2)Beyond Demons and Protectors by Christian Brown

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ll dive right in and tell you that this is the second book in the series, however I didn’t feel I lost out by not reading the first, it might have been beneficial, but wasn’t necessary. I was able to relate to the characters and picture them easily. You could feel the passion between Ash and Em in the writing. From the title you’ll probably guess that there is a Good versus Evil theme and we have some young adults with super powers who must defeat The Darkness. The plot is believable and the fight scenes work well. Angels, Demons, protectors Elders and Heavenly beings all play a role in this storyline. There are some fantastic locations mixed with moral advice about living and loving the here and now. I thought the book was very well written and suitable for readers of YA and upwards.

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Guest Author Johnny Worthen (Nov 5th)

Today my guest is Johnny Worthen. I reviewed his book Beatrysel back in October. Here is the link.

Johnny Worthen

About the Author

Johnny Worthen is a lifetime student of the occult. Raised in a secluded suburb of Salt Lake City, he gravitated to the more obscure paths of spiritual knowledge. He is a Freemason, twice Past Master of his Lodge, youngest ever at the time. From the University of Utah Johnny received degrees in English and Classics with a Master’s Degree in American Studies. He married his juniorprom date and together they have two sons. After many varied and interesting careers, Johnny writes full time now. He is the author of a popular blog, The Blog Mansion. Besides BEATRYSEL, Johnny has four other novels under contract for publication in 2014 and beyond.

Johnny has kindly come back to the blog to tell us more about himself and his work.

1) Where is your home town?
I am originally from Utah, Salt Lake City. I moved away for a decade to Oregon where the politics were better but the weather worse. Rain won out and I returned to the Utah desert and now live in a Salt Lake City suburb just up the hill from where I went to high school.
2) How long have you been writing?
All my life, but full-time for about two years. Seriously for eight.
3) Have you always written horror?
Oh no. I write all kinds of things. I call myself a multi-genre author. BEATRYSEL was just the first to come to press and I always thought of it as an “occult thriller.” I have a Young Adult Paranormal trilogy, ELEANOR UNSEEN, coming next July and a comedic mystery series starting next year called THE FINGER TRAP with slacker detective Tony Flaner at the helm. I also have a Thriller looking for a home, sequels and yes, another horror. My motto is I write what I want to read. When I can’t find a title that’s saying what I want to hear, I say it. Thus I’m all over the place. I’m writing another YA now and gearing up for a western after that.
4) Where does your interest in the occult come from?
Being from Utah the conversation was always about religion. I grew attracted to religions that were more active than passive. Prayer seemed cool, but what if you added music and smells, dance steps, foreign language, intermediaries and a wider variety of symbolism. I grew up in the shadow of a rare Utah Catholic enclave so that might have been part of it. I studied alternate philosophies and religions and then stumbled across the works of the Qabalists which lead to the Golden Dawn, Mathers, Crowley and Regardie. I joined a Masonic Lodge as soon as I could and kept reading. The “magickal world view” is complex and shifting and not well understood. In its modern form it’s an amalgam of so many cultures and philosophies that it’s like a city-wide buffet. In its best sense, there’s room for everyone and everything. In its worst form its backward and superstitious. Nevertheless, there’s a certain thrill in approaching “randomness” in the world as if it’s a personal challenge to understand. A good magician will see bad things as tests and good things as greater tests and forever try to better himself by the belief that everything he does, says, feels and thinks is intricately connected to the universe at large.
5) Can you explain the spelling of Magick which you use in the book?
Aleister Crowley coined the spelling of Magick with a K in his seminal book, Magick in Theory and Practice. Crowley, or the Great Beast, as he was sometimes called, was one of the foremost scholars and disciples of occult philosophy rising out of the nineteenth century supernatural fads. In an era of charlatans and seance tricks, he wanted to differentiate the philosophy of occult working from parlour tricks and shows. Thus he made the word Magick. I like it.
6) Can you tell the readers a little about who or what Beatrysel is?
Beatrysel is an being created by Julian Cormac. Angel or Demon or Spirit – it is the same thing. Such terms are subjective depending upon how cooperative and agreeable they are. Using the forms of Theurgy, the ancient Magickal art of summoning ‘demons’ Julian decided to make his own being. He did this with ancient magicks employing his powerful will and the ancient forms he is an expert in. In modern magickal parlance, Beatrysel might be termed an ‘egregore’ or thought-form, but that term didn’t suit me, and those creatures tend to be too weak, so I made her a full fledged demon/angel. Beatrysel is Julian’s ideal of love, everything he believes it to be. He gives it life in the aether and then uses theurgy to bring it into the real world. Love, however, no matter how beautiful and idyllic is not so simple. The universal laws of balance must be maintained; there is no light without darkness, no love without hate, and demons covet flesh.
7) The plot is very complex, did it evolve as you wrote or did you have the main idea all sorted before you began writing?
It started out as an exploration and therapy. I set up the situation, figured some of the backstory and then the story just took off. Not to sound trite, but it was magickal. There were many times that I felt I was taking dictation. It started where I thought it would, climaxed where I intended, but the rest had a life to itself. The last chapter in particular was a surprise to me as I hope it will be for the readers.
8) Tempt the readers by hinting at the different dark arts cultures you included in the book.
I see modern occultism as a potpourri of traditions. In BEATRYSEL, I lean heavy on High Magick, the formalized ritualistic current I’m most familiar with, but I also include some Hoodoo, Wicca and Druidism among others.
9) Was there any specific research that was new to you that you underwent in order to complete the book? 
My herb lore isn’t very good. Amanda’s magick was challenging. I knew it in theory, but her correspondences required some work on my part. Amethysts and lavender, red silk and medicine bags. I wanted to get it right so I studied up.
10) What are you working on at the moment? 
I have a sort of follow-up to BEATRYSEL I’m editing now, called WHAT IMMORTAL HAND. It’s occult but in a different vein – darker if you can believe it. I’ll be shopping it around later this year. The next thing I’m sure to have in print is my ELEANOR trilogy and then Tony Flaner in 2015. I’ve a thriller called THE BRAND DEMAND I’m sending to agents now I’m hoping to sell by Christmas. It’s a modern re-imagining of Edward Abbey’s MONKEY WRENCH GANG that I’m hoping will spark a series. Now, just this month I started a new book but I don’t know where it’s going yet so I’m not sure how to categorize it. It’s a dystopian young adult so far, but it’s early still.
LINKS Johnny on the Web (come by and say ‘hey’)
Twitter @JohnnyWorthen


Unsatisfied with the ancient grimoires, the Magus made his own. Unsatisfied with the ancient demons, the Magus made Beatrysel. She was a creature of love, but there is no love without hate, no light without darkness, no loyalty without betrayal. And demons covet flesh. Johnny Worthen’s novel BEATRYSEL is a modern Faust tale set in the American Northwest where the cold winter rain melts the barriers between what is real and what is more real. Beatrysel is a terrifying journey through modern metaphysics, High Magic and ancient religions where secret dreams turn to nightmares when Will becomes Form. Power-hungry magicians, serial killers and scorned lovers must contend with the power of the most beautiful and dangerous Magick in creation– for Beatrysel is a creature of love.

Thank you Johnny that was a really great interview, I’m so glad I decided to read outside my comfort zone and review your book. It’s been great working with you.

Legends Of Windemere: Beginning Of A Hero by Charles E Yallowitz

Legends Of Windemere: Beginning Of A HeroLegends Of Windemere: Beginning Of A Hero by Charles E. Yallowitz

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Windemere; every time I read this word I thought of the Lake District in the UK. (I Know the spelling differs!)The book evolves to be full of legends, magic, heros, demons and destiny. Images of Middle Earth came to mind and a Hobbit or two would have fitted easily in to this cleverly woven tale full of imaginative description. It easily stands alone as a well written novel of magical adventure. I really enjoyed reading this book.

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After the Fall by Charity Norman

After the FallAfter the Fall by Charity Norman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a book about a family who decide to emigrate to New Zealand to leave behind a failed business and give themselves a new start in life. Each member of the family expects a different outcome from the move and the family left in England have their own opinions about the emigration. Martha and her family are tested severely by their choices and for some it’s too much. Is New Zealand the paradise they wished for or the hell they all fear? I related to this book as I have been to New Zealand and I have a friend who emigrated there, leaving behind her own failed business and finding a few demons of her own!

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