The Author, Mr. Ren Garcia:
Title: Stenibelle (League of Shadows)
Author: Ren Garcia
Type: Action, Adventure, Sci-fi, Steampunk
Rating: 4 stars
THE 3rd TURN OF THE SHADOW TECH GODDESS The quest of Paymaster Stenstrom spans the planes, taking a bizarre turn in the 3rd universe, as there he is not an affluent man but a woman in desperate circumstances. Lady Stenibelle is imprisoned for her role in the Seeker Affair, is penniless, and her House of Belmont-South Tyrol is on the verge of extinction. Her spirit broken, Stenibelle is resigned to perform her sentence without fuss, do as she is told, and fade away in obscurity. However, fate is not yet finished with her. Stenibelle is in the gaze of hidden benefactors with ulterior motives. People claiming to be her dear friends come forward, yet she does not know them. The Quests of the Shadow tech Goddess proceed, and she must discover the hero that lies within or face total oblivion. The disgraced 30th daughter of the House of Belmont will either be the final stake driven into its dying heart, or the ray of light that comes to save it and all else that follows.
This book was not what I expected! I’ve read a lot of books in this particular genre, and somehow those books always had the same factors embedded in them. This book…it was certainly not slow-paced, it was certainly not typical steampunk/sci-fi fiction, it was CERTAINLY not unoriginal. The author did a very good job portraying the main characters, the technology, and the plot line.
First and foremost, what I really liked about this novel were the various types of steampunk technology. Of course, all of the technologies had interesting names, like bolabungs, or VUNKULA (yes, it’s supposed to be capitalized 🙂 ). These made reading about them a little bit stressful at first because the names do not give a glimpse on what these technologies really are. I mean, bolabungs? It made me think of baubles, and those glass balls hanging from ropes for decoration in people’s houses. However, when the author explains to you in vivid detail on what they really are, you can’t help but want one for yourself. Thanks to this book, I really want a VUNKULA of my own, thank you very much. Kudos to the author for inventing these devices with his imagination!
The second part that I really liked about this book was that the imagery and the descriptions of the characters and the world really drew me in. I could easily picture the setting, and could easily imagine what the characters looked like. Some authors try to achieve a vivid sense of imagery in their writing, but end up having just some or none. This novel had no problem doing so, which heightened my reading enjoyment factor.
There are a few things that I didn’t enjoy in the book, but no book is perfect, right? For example, Stenibelle being a girl in her reality but being a boy in other realities seemed cool for a second, but then seeing her contemplate on what gender she liked made me sigh. I really wanted her to end up with Gwendolyn, but alas, it did not happen (I may be biased because my ship did not sail<= fangirl language). Another thing that I didn’t really enjoy was that although once you get into the book you enjoy it, the beginning was somewhat confusing. I blame myself for this, though. I should’ve read the other books in the series, although this book could be considered a stand-alone.
Other than that, this book was a phenomenal read. A bit on the short-story side, but if you want a fun, interesting read to keep you on your toes, this book is for you.
Thanks to Ms. Amy Del Rosso and the author for letting me participate in the book tour!
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