Year One (Chronicles of The One #1) by Nora Roberts

Book Description:

Published: December 5, 2017

Format: Audio/Audible

It began on New Year’s Eve.

The sickness came on suddenly, and spread quickly. The fear spread even faster. Within weeks, everything people counted on began to fail them. The electrical grid sputtered; law and government collapsed–and more than half of the world’s population was decimated.

Where there had been order, there was now chaos. And as the power of science and technology receded, magic rose up in its place. Some of it is good, like the witchcraft worked by Lana Bingham, practicing in the loft apartment she shares with her lover, Max. Some of it is unimaginably evil, and it can lurk anywhere, around a corner, in fetid tunnels beneath the river–or in the ones you know and love the most.

As word spreads that neither the immune nor the gifted are safe from the authorities who patrol the ravaged streets, and with nothing left to count on but each other, Lana and Max make their way out of a wrecked New York City. At the same time, other travelers are heading west too, into a new frontier. Chuck, a tech genius trying to hack his way through a world gone offline. Arlys, a journalist who has lost her audience but uses pen and paper to record the truth. Fred, her young colleague, possessed of burgeoning abilities and an optimism that seems out of place in this bleak landscape. And Rachel and Jonah, a resourceful doctor and a paramedic who fend off despair with their determination to keep a young mother and three infants in their care alive.

In a world of survivors where every stranger encountered could be either a savage or a savior, none of them knows exactly where they are heading, or why. But a purpose awaits them that will shape their lives and the lives of all those who remain.

The end has come. The beginning comes next.

Review –

When I started listening to this book, I knew immediately that I was going to love it, and therefore would have to not rush the experience. By that I mean, I don’t “binge-listen” hour after hour, but take it slow and make it last. I even set it aside for a week here and there to make it last longer.

This is unlike anything that Nora Roberts has ever written and she hit it out of the ball park!

“When the world as they know it ends, the survivors of a mysterious plague are faced with a new world in which both dark and light magic are rising.

“When Ross MacLeod pulled the trigger and brought down the pheasant, he had no way of knowing he’d killed himself. And billions of others.” So begins the latest novel from publishing juggernaut Roberts, and the rest of the book is just as gripping. When a virus takes out nearly 80 percent of the Earth’s human population, the survivors must figure out how to live in their new world, which includes the appearance of a varied set of magical abilities in a large part of the surviving population. Both the magick and un-magick people have violent factions which are trying to vanquish internal and external enemies, and good people from both groups have to band together in order to stay safe and establish a new order that honors life and decency. In one such community, witches Lana and Max are having a child, and from the moment of conception, it’s obvious that the child will be magical. As her pregnancy advances, Lana begins to suspect that even in the context of the new magical paradigm, her child has a special destiny, an impression that becomes clearer when she realizes she and her unborn child are being hunted. Finding sanctuary on a remote farm, Lana ushers the child into the world, and soon both foes and allies begin to arrive at her doorstep, deepening Lana’s belief that her daughter is meant for something great and dangerous. Roberts’ new direction is electric and ground-breaking. In some ways, it’s a synthesis of her past work: she’s often written about magical elements, family—both biological and emotional—and community. In this series launch, she’s created a believable apocalypse that is obviously leading to a grand showdown between good and evil, but the story and the characters—there are many, and she’s made some choices that are going to stun her die-hard romance fans—navigate timely issues of tolerance and bigotry; fear of the Other; violence on behalf of perceived “purity” and misdirected religious zeal; and how good people combat evil.

A fast-paced, mesmerizing, and thought-provoking novel that will no doubt add to Roberts’ legions of fans.”

KIRKUS Reviews

Five stars!!!

grab a warm cup of Theraflu, snuggle up with a copy of Year One and pray you’re one of the lucky survivors.

 

Ron Charles of the Washington Post

Prodigy (The Shapeshifter Chronicles #2) by Natasha Brown

Book Description

Published: November 16, 2012

In Clark Bend, Idaho, Chance Morgan’s dreams are haunted by the last moments shared with his grandfather. Memories of the fateful day when he died plague his thoughts, and without his grandfather’s council, his shapeshifting powers mysteriously fail him. Desperate to seek out a new mentor and learn more about the mystical world he was sheltered from, Chance must travel far from home to hunt for answers.

Eighteen-year-old, Ana Hughes has only known Chance for a few months, but he quickly found his way into her heart. Since being rescued from Chance’s power-hungry cousin, and coming back from death, Ana is unwilling to leave his side, and joins him on his quest to the Yucatan in search of a new mentor.

When Chance’s memories fall into place and reveal a threat from their past, Chance and Ana must fight to survive – or die trying.

Review –

Chance and Ana head to Mexico and the Yucatan Peninsula to find the mentor meant to teach him the ways of a Shapshifter but they haven’t a clue how to find him. As luck would have it they come across a woman names Sanchia, who in fact is related to Balam, the one they are looking for, and she takes them in and gives them food and shelter. After a while Chance and Ana head into the jungle and a black jaguar leaps toward them and turns out the be the Shapeshifter Balam. He leads them to his house in a mountain and thus training begins. Chance is learing the correct way to focus his energy not only in large animal shapes but also small ones, which are sometimes better.  Markus finds Chance again and a fight is on and to make a long story short Chance kills Markus and all of the bad energy(sickness) in him flows into Chance. Ana witnesses this and sees chance coming for her with malice in his eyes but he realizes his intent and turns into a eagle and flies away.

A dog that had been following Ana around turns out to be Lifen, a Shapeshifter and a healer and she tells Ana that she will train her to use her gifts so she can find Chance and heal him and so they head off together for Lifen’s home. Thus ends book two.  Wow! Great second installment. Can’t wait to start the next book.

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