I have been a fan and participant in the dreadful misty lands of Ravenloft for over three decades and I can attest that in that time, adventures there have gotten both more terrifying as well as more exciting. As more and more additions are made to these miniature spots of shadow and dread, the supernatural planes become more tangible all the while still being ethereal in nature, such is the Plane of Shadows which, rumor has it, holds these horrible places. Take this book, Van Richten’s Guide To Ravenloft, for instance. It delves deeper into the Dark Powers that permeate these lands than anything ever has before. And although it holds a title that speaks to Strahd’s Ravenloft, there is so much more here. And better yet, information on how to not only explore these demi-planes, but also how to create your own. Read on brave adventurer, for the information and warnings you receive from Wizards Of The Coast might just save your life!
Richard is an art teacher at an upscale elementary school in Virginia, where his new wife, Tamara, also teaches, and her son, Elijah, attends. He’s got a great job, is lucky in love, and now his 5-year-old stepson wants Richard to adopt him. Things couldn’t be better for the beloved teacher, until disturbing reminders of his long-buried childhood trauma begin to surface, threatening to destroy his newfound happiness and possibly even his mind.
In Whisper Down The Lane, author Clay McLeod Chapman toggles between Richard’s current life and flashbacks of his life-altering experience as a 5-year-old at the center of the “Satanic Panic,” the 1980s conspiracy theory that children were being abused in satanic rituals which triggered widespread panic and wild accusations all over the United States. We see from Richard’s perspective what he was thinking as a child and how he overcame what happened, earnestly reinventing himself into a mild-mannered educator and father figure. But there’s also interview transcripts from the 1980s of the boy giving coerced and leading testimony to his psychotherapist, the result of which caused the downfall of many around him and the end to life as he knew it.
Dungeons & Dragons: Candlekeep Mysteries Hardcover
Wizards Of The Coast
Release Date: March 16, 2021
Just in time for the beginnings of the end of COVID-19 (I hope), Wizards Of The Coast is releasing an exciting new source book that is near and dear to my heart. As a bibliophile, the entire concept of this new guide is literally warming my heart. Dungeons & Dragons: Candlekeep Mysteries is more than a bit different from the normal releases in that it takes a wider view and focuses on less minutia, like other campaign books have in the past. In fact, it is a collection of adventures all tied together, much like a previous release, Ghosts Of Saltmarsh, that I reviewed a couple of years ago. Read on, dear reader, for more information!
When Mia wakes up alone in the hospital with amnesia, she has only her shattered-screen iPhone to help her piece together who she is, why no one is looking for her, and whether the blunt force trauma to the back of her head she sustained was by accident or inflicted on her by an enemy. Thankfully, her cellphone’s voice-activated Siri app is still accessible and is able to point her in the right direction. Geared up in the yellow Prada cocktail dress she was wearing when she was brought into the ER, a disheveled Mia heads out into the streets of LA to reconstruct her life using clues attained from her social media accounts and phone contacts. Is she rich and famous? Is she a philanthropist or a criminal? Is someone trying to kill her? The more she finds out about her life, the less sure she is that she wants to return to it.
The story of an amnesiac with a massive head wound and possibly the victim of attempted murder who’s roaming around Los Angeles in a designer dress and no money should be a frightening tale. But with a humorous title like Siri, Who Am I?, Sam Tschida sets up her debut novel as an entertaining, lighthearted mystery-adventure.
From a Certain Point of View: The Empire Strikes Back Hardcover | Kindle | Audiobook Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View: Book 2 of 2
Multiple Authors and Narrators
Publisher: Del Rey | Random House Audio
Release date: November 11, 2020
Just in time for the 40th anniversary of the greatest science fiction film ever made (sure, that’s arguable, but I’ll gladly argue it) and the greatest sequel ever made (again, arguable, but I’ll still argue it), The Empire Strikes Back, comes a collection of stories of those characters who either never saw any screen time, saw so little that few remember them, or, as you’ll see in this book and review, couldn’t communicate their stories in Earth-bound languages until now. That book? From a Certain Point of View: The Empire Strikes Back (Star Wars), the companion book to that which was written with the same purpose for the previous film.