Visions of Zarua is 5 today! #fantasy #epicfantasy #indiebooksbeseen

I have some news to share, but first…

Today I’m celebrating the 5th birthday of my debut fantasy, Visions of Zarua. It’s hard to believe I started my indie author journey so long ago!

It has been a time of ups and downs, and the best part has been getting so many positive reviews from happy readers. I don’t think you can beat that feeling.

I shared this back in January, but I do love to see how my book was brought to life. Why not give it a like on youtube and give Guy Barnes a boost – he did an epic job!

If you are interested in finding out more about Visions of Zarua, please follow these links.

Visions of Zarua – Amazon universal link

Audible and iTunes for the audiobook.

‘The author created such believable, magical worlds with wonderful characters that I didn’t want it to end. There’s everything in this story, good v evil, romance, crime, mystery, passion & fabulous magic, all put together in a wonderful writing style.’ Amazon reviewer

‘I completely recommend this, both for fans of the fantasy genre and for those of who haven’t read fantasy before. The story was great, the characters genuine and likable, and the worldbuilding fantastic.’ Amazon reviewer

This is the perfect time to share some news – there will soon be a new short story published in the world of Paltria featuring characters from Visions of Zarua! It’s part of a project I’ve been working on, lead in stories to introduce new readers to my fantasy stories and also for fans that want to read about their favourite characters. More news will follow soon…

For now you can help me celebrate the 5 year anniversary by sharing this post, writing a review if you’ve read it, or just say hi. I love to interact will fans, readers and bloggers.

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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Celebrations at the Chateau by Jo Thomas #romance #bookreview #netgalley

This was the another Netgalley ARC, which I was very excited to read as its by one of my favourite romance writers, Jo Thomas.

Blurb

When their grandfather dies, Fliss and her sisters are astonished to inherit a French chateau! Travelling to Normandy to visit the beautiful if faded house, they excitedly make plans over delicious crepes and local cider in the town nearby.

But they soon discover the chateau needs major work, a huge tax bill is due . . . and there’s a sitting tenant to whom they owe a monthly allowance.

Unable to sell but strapped for cash, Fliss determines to spruce up the elegant old rooms and open a B&B. But, why is Jacques, the local mayor, so hostile? How did Fliss’s grandfather come to own the place anyway? And will Jacques and Fliss be able to put their differences aside to save the chateau?

Inspired by Escape to the Chateau, this cosy and uplifting novel to curl up with, from the author of Escape to the French Farmhouse and Finding Love at the Christmas Market.

My Review

I loved reading this story right from the start. Inheriting an old French Chateau is right up there on my wish list, but seeing as that is not going to happen I had to live the fantasy through Fliss and her sisters.

When the three sisters decide to turn the old, run down Chateau into a B&B before it bankrupts them, it doesn’t go as smoothly as they’d hoped. Much like the path to true love between Fliss and the broody mayor, Jacques. They are perfect for each other but ex’s and a difficult situation in the past threatens their happy ever after.

Fliss is a very capable heroine, but she still occasionally needs rescuing and the handsome farmer / mayor / next door neighbour, Jacques is never far away.

The supporting cast are great; from Fliss’ nephew Jason who comes to help restore the chateau and blossoms in France, to Clementine Jacques step-daughter, to the huge working horse Pegasus whose always sticking his head through the fences and causing havoc, and Cedrick the peacock whose sometimes turns up to delight the guests. I have to mention the sitting tenant too, the chatelaine. She holds the key to the mystery of how Fliss’ grandfather came to own the Chateau in the first place, if only she could overcome the events in the past to confide in Fliss.

At the heart of this novel is mystery, love and family relationships. And of course there’s plenty of Christmas magic and a New Year’s Eve wedding at the Chateau to look forward to. You can’t get much better than that.

***

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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A Bookshop Christmas by Rachel Burton #bookreview #romance #netgalley

Thanks to Netgalley I managed to bag an ARC of A Bookshop Christmas by Rachel Burton ahead of the publication date of 2nd September 2021. I didn’t manage to finish reading in time post on publication day, but here is my review – hopefully it’s better late than never.

Blurb

A snowstorm. A stranger. A spark. And it’s Christmas!
It should be the perfect start to the perfect love story.

But real life is far messier and more complicated than in the pages of the books in Megan Taylor’s family bookshop – the last few years have left this young widow in no doubt of that. Moving back home to York should have been a fresh start, but all it did was allow her to retreat from the world.

When prize-winning author Xander Stone rams his supermarket trolley into her ankles and then trashes her taste in books, Megan is abruptly awoken from her self-imposed hibernation. It’s time to start living again, and she’s going to start by putting this arrogant, superior – admittedly sexy – stranger in his place.

Just as she is beginning to enjoy life again, the worst happens and Megan begins to wonder if she should have stayed hidden away. Because it turns out that falling in love again is about more than just meeting under the mistletoe… 

See it on Goodreads

My Mini Review

A bookshop is the perfect setting for a magical Christmas story.

This heart-warming romance shows that life can eventually carry on after loss. Rachel Burton has taken a very difficult subject, the death of a spose at a young age, and treats it with sensitivity. She shows how it takes time to recover, and can often be overwhelming, but with the right person happiness is possible. This isn’t a sad or maudlin story, but one of hope.

I immediately connected to Megan the main character, and Zander has all the marks of a broody hero with a soft side to him. The challenges they face are believable and entertaining, and I was rooting for their budding relationship to develop despite all the set backs and misunderstandings.

The cast of characters were all well drawn and likeable and I especially liked the book group’s weekly meeting at the book shop and their extravagant plans for the Christmas party. Special shout out to Zander’s dog as featured on the cover.

I do love a bit of Christmas magic, though you can enjoy this story at any time of year.

***

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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Summer Kisses at Mermaids Point By Sarah Bennett #romance #bookreview

My first Sarah Bennett read and I’m hooked!

Book Blurb

Laurie Morgan runs a café in the small seaside community of Mermaids Point, named after the beauties rumoured to live in the waters a few miles off the top of the point. When a hazy image is posted online of what appears to be a mermaid, the café and the village are soon full to bursting with curious sightseers.

The most eye-catching of the new arrivals is handsome author, Jake Smith, who has rented a cottage for the summer while he works on his new book. Or so he says. In fact, he is a journalist, burned out and disillusioned with life, whose editor has sent him on a crack-pot hunt for mermaids…

Jake quickly finds himself drawn to village life, and to the gorgeous woman who runs the local café. But he soon suspects there’s trouble lurking beneath the idyllic façade, and when it looks like Laurie’s family might be involved, Jake faces a difficult choice. Pursue the truth, or protect the woman he’s beginning to fall in love with…

My Mini Review

I was hooked on this story from the first page and loved the two main characters. The location was easy to imagine and Mermaid Point sounds like the kind of place I would love to visit.

There are plenty of misunderstandings and the mystery of the mermaid to keep you turning the pages, plus the all important love affair between Laurie and Jake to root for. Emotional and fun, this book had it all.

I look forward to discovering more of Sarah Bennet’s books and returning to Mermaid Point in the future.

Check it out on Amazon.

***

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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Writing update – 4 month plan #amwriting #fantasy #romance

***IMPORTANT UPDATE*** THE LOST SENTINEL IS A FINALIST IN BBNYA 2021. I’m excited to reach the final round though the next few months will be agony waiting for the results! See my earlier post about it here.

I haven’t done a writing update for a while so I thought it would be a good time to share my plans for the rest of the year. But first…

What have I been up to?

It doesn’t feel like much. I’ve written 3 fantasy short stories as lead in’s to my books. The Guardian is a prequel to Visions of Zarua, Garrick the Protector from the Silent Sea Chronicles trilogy and War Wounds from my new series Starlight Prophecy, which I hope to publish in 2022.

I’ve also been working on my romance series Mermaid Hotel though did put that on hold to re-work the whole structure of book 1 and 2 in the Starlight Prophecy series. It’s been so good to escape back into fantasy, but now I’m at a stage where I need to put that on hold to get back to the romance series.

The next 4 months

In September I’m doing a 6 week Curtis Brown Writing Romance course led by Jenny Colgan. I plan to work through book 1 – Evie’s Song and hopefully get it into a publishable state very soon.

In October I’ve signed up for a World Building course run by the Romantic Novelist Association. It’s an area that my readers have said works really well in my books, but I don’t want to be complacent. I’m always eager to hone my craft so I’m hoping to learn a few things that will enhance the Starlight Prophecy series.

Publishing plans…

At some point I plan to publish the short stories I’ve written in a short fantasy teaser book which will be free to my newsletter subscribers. I’m toying with the idea of writing more stories to go into it but I haven’t decided for certain yet. I’ve also wondered whether to publish a book of modern day short stories and that idea is still in the back of my mind.

I’m hoping to finish books 1 and 2 in the Starlight Prophecy and the first few books in The Mermaid Hotel ready to publish in 2022. I would love to get something out sooner but time is running against me.

The most important thing is to keep working and hopefully 2022 will be the year I get lots of books out into the world.

I hope you will be there cheering me on.

Til next time…

***

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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My TBR for the rest of 2021 #amreading #tbr #fantasy #romance

Over the last few days I’ve been sharing mini book reviews of the books I’ve read this year. Having already completed my 20 book Goodreads challenge, I want to keep up the reading momentum.

I still have quite a few books I want to read this year and, although I’m a mood reader, I try to stick to a sort of plan when it comes to thinking about what to read next.

So this is my checklist of books to complete by the end of 2021. I love seeing them all set out with their beautiful covers on display rather than just my scribbled list!

I still have a few ARC’s from Netgalley

Fantasy books

Thunderhead is my only audiobook on the list this year.

Romance

Writing How To books

I know this is an ambitious list of 12 books considering there are only 4 months left in 2021, but who knows if I will achieve it. It’s good to try!

What are your reading plans for the rest of the year? Are you on target and do you plan, or just pick whatever you fancy?

If you missed it, here’s the link to my Goodreads challenge post showcasing the books I’ve read so far in 2021.

***

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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#Bookreview The Tanglewood Tea Shop by Lilac Mills #romance #chicklit

A fun and heartwarming read.

Blurb

What happens after your dreams come true?

Patisserie-Chef Stevie is stuck in a rut. Her beloved Great Aunt Peggy has passed away and she’s lost both her job and the love of her life. Then she gets the call from the solicitor’s office about Peggy’s will, and everything changes.

When Stevie sees a quirky tea shop up for sale in the beautiful village of Tanglewood, she decides to take Peggy’s advice and turn her life around.

But the village isn’t as idyllic as it may at first have seemed, and when the gorgeous but grouchy local stable-owner, Nick, shows up he seems like just another fly in the pastry batter…

This laugh-out-loud romantic comedy is perfect for fans of Daisy James and Holly Martin.

My Mini Review

This is the first book by Lilac Mills that I’ve read and I was so glad I did. She weaves a heart-warming and fun story with plenty of characters I found myself caring deeply for, especially the hero and heroine – Nick and Stevie.

I loved the descriptions of the location and of course the food in the tea shop. I also want to give special mentions to the cat, Peggy, who decided to move in with Stevie and the old lady Betty who took Stevie under her wing and had an interesting storyline all of her own.

After reading this I was excited to see more books set in Tanglewood. Naturally, I snapped them up and can’t wait to read them too. Hopefully Stevie and Nick will make the odd appearance in these books as I’d love to catch up with their story.

Last time I checked all three books were only 99p. So now would be a great time to pick them up on Amazon.

***

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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The Lost Sentinel is a finalist in #BBNYA2021 competition #fantasy #indieauthor

I’m excited to announce The Lost Sentinel has made it through to the final round of the Book Bloggers Novel of the Year Award 2021 competition. YAY!

I’m still in shock that I made it through the last round competing against 64 other books. There are 15 authors through to the final round and 10 prizes up for grabs. I have everything crossed, hope you do to!

You can find out more information about the competition and the prizes on the BBNYA website.

Blurb

The magical island of Kalaya is dying and only Tei, an exiled mystic, can save it.

The Assembly controls Kalaya. Originally set up to govern, they now persecute those with magic and exile them to the Turrak Mountains. Tei, a tailor’s daughter, has always hidden her magic but when her father’s old friend visits and warns them to flee to the mountains she must leave her old life behind.

On the journey, an attack leaves her father mortally wounded. He entrusts her into the care of the exiles and on his deathbed makes a shocking confession.

Tei joins the exiles search for their new Sentinel – the only person capable of restoring the fading magic. But mysterious Masked Riders are hunting the Sentinel too, and time, as well as hope, is running out.

Against mounting odds it will take friendship, heartache and sacrifice to succeed, but is Tei willing to risk everything she loves to save the island magic?

If you like multi dimensional characters in vibrant worlds, then you’ll love The Lost Sentinel – Book 1 in the Silent Sea Chronicles trilogy.

‘…this story bowled me over, it was an absolutely outstanding epic fantasy and the kind of writing fantasy authors should be aspiring to.’ Amazon reviewer

‘…Suzanne Rogerson can certainly make you forget time… A super start to what is going to be a sensational story, just make sure you are part of it from the beginning’ Vine Voice reviewer

‘THE LOST SENTINEL contains plenty of action, intrigue, and challenges throughout, making this a thrilling fantasy adventure… it whisked me away to someplace magical, alluring, and dangerous.’ Amazon reviewer

‘A story in which the authors world building is exceptional, I was immersed in Tei’s story from beginning to end and the characters were fantastically developed.’ Vine Voice Reviewer

‘With all the intricate world building, interesting characters and epic journey they all partake in, this book had me glued to it from the first page. As soon as I finished it, I was making a grab for book two to see what happened next! Suzanne Rogerson has written a fantastic start to this series – I love her writing style, and that she doesn’t shy away from putting her characters through some tough challenges as the story progresses.’ Vine Voice Reviewer

Check out The Lost Sentinel on Amazon.

***

Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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#Bookreview Raven Storm by @EmmaMilesShadow #fantasy #indieaugust #tuesdaybookblog

Raven Storm is book 3 in the Fire Walker series, a series I have loved since the first book Raven Tower.

Blurb

Fear walks with those in power.

Divided, the land of Chem hangs in the balance. In the west the Ravens seek to bring safety to women, and an end to slavery. In the east the remaining covens cling to their power, refusing to give up their way of life to foreign invaders. Across both lands the priests whisper and plot, their gods a shadowy threat hanging over them all.
To protect their young family, Kesta and Jorrun have made their home in the Raven Tower of Elden. Unable to abandon their responsibility or friends, they remain embroiled in the fight to the north. Whilst peace and friendship blossom between the Fulmers, Borrows and Elden, the arrival of strangers turns the court of Taurmaline upside down.

The history of the Fire-walkers is about to catch up with them, and the Fire-spirit’s truth will be revealed.

Check it on Goodreads.

My Mini Review (as previously shared on Goodreads)

I’m so happy I discovered this wonderful fantasy series. The cast of characters continues to grow and I find myself caring about them all. The world building is executed with great skill and I loved the magical battles. The enemies Kesta and Jorrun face are even more deadly than in the previous books and kept me turning the pages desperate to find out what happened next. As always it was full of surprises, I cannot wait to see what happens in book Four!

My Review of Book One – The Raven Tower and Book Two The Raven Coven

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Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

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#Bookreview The Sword of Kaigen by @M_L_Wang #fantasy #indieaugust

An amazing fantasy story that has many familiar tropes from the genre but with new twists you won’t see coming.

Blurb

On a mountainside at the edge of the Kaigenese Empire live the most powerful warriors in the world, superhumans capable of raising the sea and wielding blades of ice. For hundreds of years, the fighters of the Kusanagi Peninsula have held the Empire’s enemies at bay, earning their frozen spit of land the name ‘The Sword of Kaigen.’

Born into Kusanagi’s legendary Matsuda family, fourteen-year-old Mamoru has always known his purpose: to master his family’s fighting techniques and defend his homeland. But when an outsider arrives and pulls back the curtain on Kaigen’s alleged age of peace, Mamoru realizes that he might not have much time to become the fighter he was bred to be. Worse, the empire he was bred to defend may stand on a foundation of lies.

Misaki told herself that she left the passions of her youth behind when she married into the Matsuda house. Determined to be a good housewife and mother, she hid away her sword, along with everything from her days as a fighter in a faraway country. But with her growing son asking questions about the outside world, the threat of an impending invasion looming across the sea, and her frigid husband grating on her nerves, Misaki finds the fighter in her clawing its way back to the surface.

When the winds of war reach their peninsula, will the Matsuda family have the strength to defend their empire? Or will they tear each other apart before the true enemies even reach their shores?

A rich elemental magic system and deep world-building make this martial fantasy perfect for fans of R.F. Kuang, Brandon Sanderson, Leigh Bardugo, and Lian Hearn.

My Mini Review

I loved this book. It may have taken me quite a few pages to really get into the story, but once I was in, there was no going back. The story is relentless. It tore my heart out but I couldn’t stop reading.

I loved the different feel this book had. The mix of fantasy in an Asian inspired world with modern day technology was so well done. The action was intense, the emotions it inspired were heart-wrenching, and the world building and magic systems were both immersive and awe-inspiring! I might even go so far as to say this book is a masterpiece in the fantasy genre.

Although a standalone, I feel the author has left the world open for more stories and I really hope they pick up this world again.

Check it out on Amazon for only 99p at the moment! Worth every penny.

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Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance

You can follow me on

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