Friday, August 22, 2014

[Archive] LITERAL ADDICTION's Review of Wickedly Dangerous

Deborah Blake is the award-winning author of Circle, Coven and Grove: A Year of Magickal Practice (Llewellyn 2007), Everyday Witch A to Z: An Amusing, Inspiring & Informative Guide to the Wonderful World of Witchcraft (Llewellyn 2008), The Goddess is in the Details: Wisdom for the Everyday Witch (Llewellyn 2009), Everyday Witch A to Z Spellbook (July 2010), Witchcraft on a Shoestring (Llewellyn 2010). and, Everyday Witch Book of Rituals (Llewellyn 2012). She has published numerous articles in Llewellyn annuals, as well as other Pagan publications, and her ongoing column, “Magick on a Shoestring” is featured in Witches & Pagans Magazine.

Deborah’s paranormal romance series, The Baba Yaga will be coming in 2014 from Berkley Publishing.

Her short story, “Dead and (Mostly) Gone” is included in the Pagan Anthology of Short Fiction: 13 Prize Winning Tales (Llewellyn, 2008). Deborah’s first novel, Witch Ever Way You Can, was the winner or finalist in many RWA (Romance Writers of America) contests and received the EMILY “Best of the Best” Award. Her fiction is primarily Paranormal Romance, although she also writes Fantasy, Mystery and Young Adult.

Deborah had been interviewed on television, radio and podcast, and can be found online at Facebook, Twitter and as well as The Creativity Cauldron, a loop she founded for writers and aspiring writers.

When not writing, Deborah runs The Artisans’ Guild, a cooperative shop she founded with a friend in 1999, and also works as a jewelry maker, tarot reader, and energy healer. She lives in a 100 year old farmhouse in rural upstate New York with five cats who supervise all her activities, both magickal and mundane.

Wickedly Dangerous


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Known as the wicked witch of Russian fairy tales, Baba Yaga is not one woman, but rather a title carried by a chosen few. They keep the balance of nature and guard the borders of our world, but don’t make the mistake of crossing one of them…

Older than she looks and powerful beyond measure, Barbara Yager no longer has much in common with the mortal life she left behind long ago. Posing as an herbalist and researcher, she travels the country with her faithful (mostly) dragon-turned-dog in an enchanted Airstream, fulfilling her duties as a Baba Yaga and avoiding any possibility of human attachment.

But when she is summoned to find a missing child, Barbara suddenly finds herself caught up in a web of deceit and an unexpected attraction to the charming but frustrating Sheriff Liam McClellan.

Now, as Barbara fights both human enemies and Otherworld creatures to save the lives of three innocent children, she discovers that her most difficult battle may be with her own heart…

Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Vivacious Valkyrie - Marta:*Copy gifted in exchange for an honest review
Now this is completely different and I'm so pleased that the old legend is given a new twist! For centuries the old Russian legend of Baba Yaga has both fascinated and terrified many but this new series brings a whole new spin on the idea of a woman connected by magic to the earth and woe betide any who cross her. Neither wholly good nor really wicked the Baba Yaga will often be sought by those needing help but making a bargain with her will often have consequences so beware!

Barbara Yeager is so much more than she seems to be. A woman traveling with her dog with a fascination for herbs and their uses but Barbara is also known as Baba Yaga! Oh shes not just the witch of eastern folklore but one of a handful who protect the boundaries between worlds and carry the title of Baba Yaga. Called to a small town by a sense of acute distress Barbara quickly finds out that children are going missing but she also attracts the attention of the local sheriff Liam and the law and Barbara's secrets are quite literally worlds apart! Something nasty is in the town and Liam clearly needs help as what's attacking the townsfolk is most definitely not from the mortal realm but how can Barbara save the missing children without giving her secret away?

This was an unexpected delight and I loved that the author took inspiration from old legends without rehashing them too much. The Baba Yaga is still portrayed as a woman who can be tricky when it comes to magic and her incredible home from the old stories comes bang up to date in this book. Those who remember the stories will be pleased to see her faithful companion Chudo Yudo a dragon that in this reality has the form of a dog is very much alive and kicking in this story and his character adds lots of humour to the proceedings.

As for the character well Barbara isn't perfect and at times really did seem conflicted. She is a woman of more than eighty years but looks like a young woman still but she has given up on love. After all she is always traveling to wherever she is needed next so any kind of permanent relationship is out if the question, isn't it? Well there is a certain troubled sheriff who is clearly fascinated by Barbara but unfortunately he carries his own dark secrets and this is not the usual romantic novel.

As this is the first of this new series I am very interested to see just what the author has in mind to deliver next. There's a wealth of possibilities here I think as we meet creatures of myth and legend and of course there are the other Baba Yagas to meet! This book kept my interest and I'm happy to say it's a good length, which I do prefer. A strong heroine, diverse supporting characters and most definitely plot driven. I will happily read more from Ms Blake and look forward to her next book.

Wickedly Dangerous

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