Smoke & Summons
As a human vessel for an ancient spirit, Sandis lives no ordinary life. At the command of her master, she can be transformed against her will into his weapon—a raging monster summoned to do his bidding. Unlike other vessels, Sandis can host extremely power ...more
I got this book as my Kindle First pick for January! You know, it sounded good and all but I had no idea! This world of magic and demons and people in a world together.
Sandis and Rone are the main characters and I loved them!! I even loved Ireth, even though I shouldn’t. I hope he shows back up in the next book! We shall see!
Which is okay, because it allows the story to revolve around Sandis, who is a vessel capable of becoming a temporary home of a demon. Her life is about to abruptly change, which is where the story begins. Her a ...more
The author tells us everything, instead of showing us anything. The characters are shallow and bland. The plot is almost nonexistent. The 300+ pages of chase scenes and worried internal monologues should’ve served as the first 100 pages or so that would lay the ground work for further dev ...more
Smoke & Summons by Charlie N. Holmberg first caught my attention with its synopsis, but I became even more intrigued once I realized what I was looking at on the cover was the head of a fiery demon-like horse. The reason for this striking motif was soon revealed, as the story introduces readers to Sandis, who is no ordinary young woman. For one, she is a vessel, whose body is trained and primed to hold demon-like spiri ...more
My journey to love Charlie Holmberg's work is not up to an auspicious start. While not necessarily a bad book, this book continually highlights that the YA genre takes little to no risks with their plot or characters. Granted this is better than one's i've read in recent years but honestly this could have been so so so so much better.
So rundown of my thoughts:
📌Little or no mention of this Numien mythology or whatever the heck their whole game in this is, just stringy basics. This Ireth creatur
I think Charlie builds a decent fantasy world, but this one is a lot weaker than her Paper Magician series. I think this is an attempt to make a darker series but keep her super-wholesome religious characters. It's not that this is a hopepunk or whatever people are calling it, but you can definitely tell that the author is ...more
This book is a classic example of weak plot syndrome. Where the plot isn't really good so you fill the pages with chase scene after chase scene. And then, in the calmer spots, you get the woes of young love and the weakness of the main characters. Sandis is a super weak woman and a horrible role model for women (especially young women), IMO. She is the classic damsel in distress and never grows out of it. The only time she sho ...more
I was excited to read SMOKE AND SUMMONS for those reasons. But unfortunately, I was disappo ...more
This was a kindle first reads for January. Maybe this will appeal to a much more juvenile audience than myself?
Because this is classic YA paranormal schmaltz -- Girl (with exemplary powers even for her 'kind') can be possessed and used as a tool whether she likes it or not, girl miraculously ESCAPES and (right away!) meets a boy (with exemplary powers of his own), they -- this will shock you, i know! -- fall in love in two days, (view spoiler)[ get caught, (hide spoiler)], spend time doubtin ...more
Smoke & Summons has some fantastic world-building. This book takes place in a city that was built on the ruins of an ancient city. There are artifacts and old magics left over from this old civilization, but most people don’t pay attention to that, they just go about living their lives. The place is crowded ...more
I'm in awe of how Holmberg's worldbuilding and ability to drag you deep into the hearts and emotions of her characters. Absolutely fantastic.
A quick overview of the plot:
Sandis is a young woman who is being held captive by evil men who dabble in occult practices. On her back she bares the markings of the demon Ireth, a stallion engulfed in flames. Her captor, Kazen, uses her body as a vessel into which he can summon and control the demon in order to carry out dark deeds of murder and mayhem. When Sandis sees Kazen kill another young vessel while trying to summon an even ...more
update...take back what I said about the author being male...hahaha...sorry. I jumped the gun on that one before reading the authors profile.
I received this book as a First Read from Amazon and was pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed this story.
I normally am skeptical about male author's writing about female protagonist s but this author did a wonderful job of capturing true emotions and had me finishing this book rather quickly.
And the cliffhanger...? Wow...I ca ...more
Holmberg is a fantastic world builder. We already knew this thanks to the Paper Magician series, and here it happens again. We're dropped into an alternate world with magic, organised religion, corrupt politicians and all. I don't think I could point to a single paragraph where any of this is explained to the reader, but everything seems familiar by the time it becomes important to the story.
After reading SO MANY books where I ...more
However post set for up things took a turn for the worst. The middle was essentially the same segment on repeat (running to do x job, almost captured and then hiding and recovering ad naseaum).
There was no emotional ups and downs, it was tense and fast all the way through. The breaks where ...more
I ended up with mixed feelings about Smoke & Summons , despite a solid beginning, but overall I did enjoy this book. Holmberg has created a fascinating world where humans are ...more
The first 200 pages I'd only give 3 stars to, but the last 100 really picked up. I was pleasantly surprised to see how fast the book ended. The setting is fantastic, a fun blend of fantasy and technology that isn't really steam punk, and the story was unique. I will read book 2 when it comes out.
The story centres around one of these slaves and a thief she runs into while trying to escape her summoner. Romance ensues as they hide, fight, betray and sacrifice in a story that has a satisfying ending but still leaves enough unanswered questions that you need to check when the next book is due.
The worldbuilding and character development in Smoke and Summons is extremely well done. You're handed everything you need to follow along and paint a mental picture through story progres ...more
The concept of the book sounds awesome, what with the rogueish thief with his minute of immortality, and a vessel of a freaking fire horse! Unfortunately, neither of these aspects are explored to the extent I would've liked, especially the magical aspect which isn't really explained all that well. I did, however, love the moment when Sandis finally real ...more