2020 Reading Challenge

2020 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 6 books toward her goal of 240 books.
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Book Reviews: The Xana Bard Tarot Mysteries (Books 4-6) by Bevan Atkinson

As I told you last week when I introduced this marvelous series, this is a two-parter – today I’m covering the last three books in the series. If you missed the other post, you can find it here. If you’re all caught up, dig right in!

The Empress Card
They just keep getting better!

I am beyond excited that I stumbled upon this series through NetGalley! The stories are, without exception, engaging and original and fun to read. They are not overly violent or graphic or sexualized, focusing instead on character development and interesting and unusual plot lines. As a result they are great before-bed reads – quick, engaging, and thoroughly enjoyable.

This time out, I really enjoyed seeing Mater fleshed out. In the earlier books she comes across as a great foil but a bit of a caricature. In this book, she becomes a fully-developed character, and while I entirely expect she’ll continue to WASP-torture Xana in future installments, it was fascinating to get a peek behind her curtain…

Looking forward to the next book, which I’m starting post haste!

The Emperor Card
Things continue to take fascinating turns in Atkinson’s delightful tarot series… This time we get a behind-the-scenes look at another member of Xana’s family – and you won’t believe the secrets underpinning his life/death! The mysterious circumstances surrounding a dead man who appears out of nowhere in our fearless heroine’s backyard are engaging, entertaining, and wild – much like the life of said fearless heroine. The series continues to hold my interest and leave me eagerly awaiting the next installment… It’s been a marvelous find!

The Hierophant Card
This series continues to delight, and to provide new and unusual settings and mysterious deaths – no small feat in a world that seems over-populated by mysteries… The characters have settled into a routine that is comfortably familiar – which is not to say that they’ve stagnated but rather that Atkinson has done a lovely job setting up a world in which growth is expected and a part of the scenery rather than thrown at the reader for shock or surprise value. It makes reading each new book feel like snuggling in front of a warm fire – you know you’ll have ups and downs while sitting there, as things play out and temperatures rise and fall, but the overall sensation will be thoroughly relaxing and enjoyable on the whole!

***

My review copies of these books were provided, obligation-free, by NetGalley and the publisher.

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