4 of 5 stars
Thirteen year old Pandora Atheneus Andromaeche Helena of the House of Prometheus is determined to have the best prop for her school project, and to show the Mean Girls that she and her friends are not misfits. So, she borrows the infamous box given to her father by Zeus- the one that holds all the evils the gods locked inside it. Of course, things don’t go exactly according to her plans and the box gets opened, releasing seven evils into the world. Zeus is not pleased, and charges Pandy with finding and returning each of the evils to the box. She must do it within six months, and her family can’t help. If she fails, she and her family will be doomed to the worst torments Zeus can come up with for eternity and beyond. Her two best friends and her dog, who aren’t technically family, join her on her first quest: finding Jealousy.
Okay, yes, this is another kid’s book. But I like to see what’s out there for the kids now and again, and I’m a sucker for mythology-based stories of any type. And this one is pretty good. It does a nice job of weaving the story of Pandora’s Box with Prometheus’ fire-stealing and other bits of Greek mythology. The characters are good. Pandy and her friends are very much teenaged girls- worried about school, obsessing over clothes and jewelry, pining over the cute boys. The adventure they take on to find Jealousy is stretched just enough to make it a fun read without going overboard into too fantastic to believe. There are touches of humor, moments of emotion, and lots of action. It was a fairly quick read for me, and I think most middle-grade kids would find it quite readable, as well. It is the type of story that would be a good way to introduce and perhaps get a child’s interest piqued in the Greek legends. If the rest of the series is as good, there is a lot of fun reading out there for the kids.
All of my books are on sale at Smashwords until July 31. Two are half off and two are free:
Here are the books and relevant information:
When your family runs the mining operation on a planet that supplies a long-depleted Earth with needed resources, there are bound to be those who would like to see you fail. After five years away with the Interstellar Security Corps, Kaili is coming home after the death of her grandmother as a key participant in the ceremony to install her sister as head of the company and the ruling planetary council. She and her partner land in the middle of old resentments and new threats.
Like all of her people, Kaili is gifted with psi abilities developed over generations living in close harmony with their world- what outsiders see as magic. The ceremony investing her sister with her new positions will be a formal ritual, and Kaili, as her sister’s closest relative, will complete the binding Circle.
Accidents and unrest are growing in the mine operations, and Kaili and her partner, Jeff, uncover evidence that her sister will be formally challenged at the ceremony. When Kaili goes missing right before the ceremony, and returns with no apparent memory of the past few days, Jeff knows something is not right. He will need to use a little magic of his own to make sure Kaili is ready to face the family’s enemies. If not, it could mean both sisters’ lives.
“Circle Unbroken is an awesome mix of two genres, masterfully woven together into a strong story.” From a review on Readcommendations
The novel “Circle Unbroken” is on sale now through July 31 at 50% off its regular price of $3.99. Coupon code is PL25C
“Six of One: A Collection of Short Fantasy” by M.A. Kropp is a set of six short stories, set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Included are:
A Girl, An Elf, and a Shoe– An elf causes a mix-up the day before the big race
With Pen In Hand– A wizardly writer creates his own audience
Impish– An apprentice sorcerer lets the imp out of the bag- or box
Where Angels Tread– What if Heaven and Hell are more like The Sopranos than Seraphim? A noir style story in two parts, where a vital piece of Heavenly equipment goes missing.
Siren Song– A young accountant has an encounter with a mermaid and her companion and must think quickly to save his father.
Peepers– A young man visiting from the city finds the nighttime song of some tiny frogs irresistible.
“Six of One” is also at 50% off its regular price of $1.99. Coupon code is EW65A
A hundred years after Earth’s final environmental collapse, the human population is scattered, living in deep caves or underground to escape the heat and radiation that still ravage the planet. But some species adapted better to the changes. Sam, a genetically engineered lizard, is part of an ongoing program to discover what allowed his kind to evolve so quickly. Intelligent, able to communicate, and make decisions, is Sam a person or an experiment? When another survivor of the devastation threatens the promising food crops being developed, Sam may be given the chance to prove himself.“Survival of the Fittest” is FREE until July 31. Coupon code is WW27A.
The climate is ruined. Cycles of torrential rain and snow alternate with heat waves that make it dangerous to be outdoors for long. Most of the farmable land is either underwater from rising oceans or destroyed in the severe weather cycles. Food is in short supply, and Beni Oligowma controls the distribution of what there is in his local area. Grocery store owners Frank and his father have to live with whatever Beni decides is fair. And that usually means Frank can’t afford the best that’s available. When a university student returns home with an experimental method that may provide a new way to grow food, Frank is determined to help the system succeed, even if it means a confrontation with Beni.
“Feed My People” is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free without need for a code.