We love all our fans here at Engen, but every so often we think its a good idea to highlight a fan in a special way, because really: they keep things going over here. If there wasn’t anyone reading our books, we’d have no reason to keep writing them. With that in mind, we’d like to thank a longtime fan of our work: Kelly!
Kelly has been a longtime supporter of Engen Books, as evidenced by this photo from the longago times, when the local science-fiction convention was held at the Holiday Inn! She’s been there ever since the early, tiny, black-and-white cover books, reading, commenting, and reviewing. And just plain being awesome!
She’s an awesome reader to have and a true patron of the Genre Arts scene in Newfoundland! We hope to keep earning her and fans like her. 🙂
We thought we’d show a look back on some of her awesome reviews! Thank you, Kelly!
Kelly’s Thoughts: Stuffed full of stories that range from strange to downright horrifying, this book brought me hours of entertainment as I slowly made my way through each entry. Thank-you to each and every one of the authors who lent a hand in making this book what it is.
Though I will admit that having finished the book, I’m now feeling like I need more and wishing these short stories had full length novel versions I could read. It’s like getting just a taste of a wonderful meal and then being denied the rest of it, you can’t help but want for more.
Kelly’s Thoughts: The story continues from where it left off in Cinders and I am far from disappointed with where it is going. I found myself hooked from the moment I dug into the first chapter and if it weren’t for my partner helping me regulate my reading time alongside everything else I need to do in the run of a day, I just may have finished this one all within one day. As it stands I spent the last week picking it up every time I had a moment to spare, even going so far as to take it to work with me each day just so I could continue to read it while on my lunch break. I recommend this book and Cinders to everyone who wants a story they can get lost in.
This one had a really interesting back and forth with Xander almost seeming to be secondary to Horton as the story goes on. It made for an interesting perspective of Xander as he continues to grow and change from someone hell bent on finding and punishing a single person, to someone who is willing to pause their own mission to help with the mission of another. I thoroughly enjoyed it and am hoping that Horton keeps showing up as the series continues. I don’t know how I’m going to be able to wait for the next one to come out.
Kelly’s Thoughts: The trial of Genblade. This book was a roller coaster of a story with plenty of twists and turns that keep you wondering how things are going to change and surprise you next. With fresh murders to keep you guessing who’s the cause of it all and the high emotions of the trial, it’s the kind of book that keeps you on the edge and makes you wonder if you actually know what’s going on, or if you’re falling prey to the tricks of a psychopath.
Kelly’s Thoughts: Things take quite the interesting turn here. Despite terrible things happening, for once a lot of it seems to be in the background and hint at things to come later rather then throwing the main characters for a loop time and time again. You get a better feeling for the people who have been struggling all this time and a new appreciation for the strength that some of them possess. It has a feel as though it’s the calm before the storm.
Kelly’s Thoughts: To sum it up in one word? Incredible. I wasn’t sure what to expect from this novel beyond hints from The Long Road, but it certainly was an amazing ride. The way Xander has changed for this book and the way Matthew ties the story together through a few separate points of view makes for a really engaging story. In a lot of ways this book shows a real shift in Xander away from who he was in the Black Womb series and opens up a lot of doors for him to be able to change into a driving force that is more secure in himself then ever before.
I cannot wait for the next book in this series. This feels like it was but a taste of what can happen next and makes me excited to see what Matthew does with this new spin on an old character.
Kelly’s Thoughts: Like how Matthew says in the From the Author section, this book goes to such an incredibly dark place. This is the storm that was hinted at coming in the last book and it doesn’t disappoint. It is not a long book, but the timeline that is given keeps you turning pages and devouring the story to try and figure out how things end up the way they do before you get to the ending that is briefly viewed at the beginning of the book. Parts of it make you want to weep for the loss of innocence, but then there is at least one major part that keeps you crying out for blood as the climax reaches an amazing high. I feel it leaves you with a need to find out how things go from here and I have to admit I was left with tons of questions that require reading on in the series to find the answers for.
Kelly’s Thoughts: Very interesting. All joking aside, it was a really enjoyable book to get into and I honestly couldn’t put the book down until I finished it. Matthew has a way of drawing you in and keeping you engaged to the point where you don’t realize how long you’ve been reading until the book is finished.
Kelly’s Thoughts: Had to deal with a lot of strong emotions while reading this book. Matthew really knows how to create not only villains that you hate with a passion but also main characters that you feel so much for their plight that you can’t help but envision them as real people. Was thinking about this book and all the things that occurred in it for quite some time after I finished reading it.
Enjoyed it from beginning to end, well besides the burning hatred I felt for the bad guys.
Kelly’s Thoughts: The short stories found within this book are sad, tragic, violent, wistful, and more over informative. It gives you insight on events from the Black Womb series as well as an idea of things to come as well. It also makes me realize that there are other novels connected to the Engen world that I now I have to buy as the universe that has been created by not just Matthew but other amazing writers as well has a scope beyond what I originally thought when I picked up the first book in the Black Womb series. The need to find out more is at an all time high.
I would readily recommend this book to anyone who has read the Black Womb series. Even those who haven’t read the series but want some insight into what it is all about could readily enjoy this novel. Mind you there are some spoilers about the Black Womb series, but in all honesty without having read the series you’re not bound to realize that unless you choose to read that series. And you should in any case.
Thank-you again Matthew for the books and for also helping me re-ignite my love for reading. It’s been too long since I’ve found a series that has been able to enthral me like yours has.
Kelly’s Thoughts: In a way this book encompasses a lot of things I was expecting, but then introduces more elements that I had no idea were on their way. Xander goes on to enjoy what he has and then ruins it for himself, that was expected, but then what I wasn’t expecting was for other things to work out so smoothly. I don’t want to go into detail as it is the kind of thing that is more fun to read for oneself rather then hear it from someone else.
Really interested in seeing what happens with the new element that was added and honestly curious as to how it fits into the overall story. Also, the very end of the book hinted that I may be right in a few assumptions I had, but still didn’t give enough to confirm anything. Can’t help but continue with the series now that I’m well and truly hooked. Over halfway through and still unable to put the books down.
Kelly’s Thoughts: Finally some answers to questions that have been bugging me for a couple books now. Though for how pleased I am to have been proven right in some of the assumptions I had, how this book plays out made me incredibly sad. It was painful to see what happens to some people who honestly do not deserve it, but then in a way this ending was coming for a while now and it cuts into Xander far more then someone just reading his story.
I feel for the characters here so much that I actually found myself tearing up as I finished the last page. This book has a lot of powerful emotions tied into it, so be careful how much of your heart you put into all the present characters as you read on in the Black Womb series.
Kelly’s Thoughts: At last everything draws to a close. This novel contains more then any other book in this series and ends in a way that may seem disappointing to some, but I couldn’t help but love how appropriate it is. Flowing from one event to the next, it keeps you tense as you try to find the hints of what is about to happen before it can surprise you. I found myself on the edge of my seat and unable to put the book down as I devoured the story.
In a way I don’t feel as though anything I could say about Chains would do it justice. So I will leave it at this: If you’ve enjoyed the story thus far then this book will bring you a lot of enjoyment as you draw closer to the end of Black Womb.
Kelly’s Thoughts: This book was a trip. Trying to figure out exactly what is happening and who is behind it all before anything could be revealed by the end of the book was difficult and I found myself surprised by the truth regardless. Although this book did make me start to consider that perhaps Mike could easily make a main character in his own way. Mind you he seems like he would fit better into a detective novel rather then a horror one.
In any case I’m not going to say too much about this one as I feel I would risk ruining it for anyone who wants to work on figuring things out for themselves as they read it.
Kelly’s Thoughts: Even though I’ve been spacing my reading out so as to read one novel a week, after the last book in this series I couldn’t help but keep going right away. Matthew signed this book for me and wrote “And here Black Womb gets even weirder” and when I first read that I did not realize how true a statement it was. The universe of Black Womb has given hints that there is a lot more to it then just the events happening to the main characters and this book dives into that. It begs the question of how do you deal with danger when it is not the usual story of people having chosen to kill and commit crimes without caring how they hurt people, but rather something outside of humanity?
Then there’s Xander. Someone who wants to be a hero but keeps losing that which he cares about the most the more he tries to do the right thing. Watching Xander struggle with loss in the form of addressing someone who is no longer around is an interesting take on his character and in a few cases made me smile through the sadness I felt after the last book.