Author: Gail Z. Martin
Narrator: Amanda Ronconi
Length: 19 hours 58 minutes
Series: Deadly Curiosities Collection, Book 1
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Released: Dec. 4, 2018
Genre: Paranormal Fantasy
A collection of nine adventures: “Buttons”, “The Restless Dead”, “Retribution”, “Coffin Box”, “Wicked Dreams”, “Collector”, “Bad Memories”, “Shadow Garden”, and “Spook House.”
Cassidy Kincaide runs Trifles & Folly in modern-day Charleston, an antiques and curios shop with a dangerous secret. Cassidy can read the history of objects by touching them and along with her business partners Teag, who has Weaver magic, and Sorren, a 600-year-old vampire, they get rid of cursed objects and keep Charleston and the world safe from supernatural threats.
An extension of the Deadly Curiosities book series.
Gail Z. Martin writes urban fantasy, epic fantasy and steampunk for Solaris Books, Orbit Books, Falstaff Books, SOL Publishing and Darkwind Press. Urban fantasy series include Deadly Curiosities and the Night Vigil (Sons of Darkness). Epic fantasy series include Darkhurst, the Chronicles Of The Necromancer, the Fallen Kings Cycle, the Ascendant Kingdoms Saga, and the Assassins of Landria. Together with Larry N. Martin, she is the co-author of Iron & Blood, Storm & Fury (both Steampunk/alternate history), and the Spells Salt and Steel comedic horror series. Newest titles include Tangled Web, Vengeance, The Dark Road, and Assassin’s Honor. As Morgan Brice, she writes urban fantasy MM paranormal romance, with her Witchbane and Badlands series.
Amanda is an actress and narrator who divides her time between New York City and Upstate New York. She has a BFA from NYU where she studied at the Stella Adler Conservatory. She has performed in theaters around New York City and regionally at The Alley, Capital Rep and many productions at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey.
Her Off-Broadway solo comedy, Shirley at the Tropicana, received critical acclaim and was subsequently featured in The New York Times. Film and TV credits include Daydream Believer (Slamdance 2001’s Best Dramatic Feature winner), The Understudy, Deadly Sins (ID Discovery), IFC’s Get Hit and Chasing Paradise. National network and regional commercials include Chase Bank, Sony and Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Her voiceover work encompasses over 100 audiobooks available on Audible.com. She is a proud member of SAG-AFTRA and Actors’ Equity.
The next day, when we reached the Allendale house, I let Teag go on ahead to unlock the door and turn on the lights. I lagged behind, turning my senses inward, listening for the button’s owner. There was a presence here. I followed Teag to the attic. “Teag, let me hold your jacket, please,” I said. I was hoping that having the button close to me would heighten my senses. It did. As soon as I held Teag’s jacket, the connection with the button grew stronger. As Teag began to wander around, looking at the attic walls for hiding places, I let my senses focus on the box, let draw me toward one particular corner. Against one wall was a large, empty armoire. I stood in front of it, wondering why the button had steered me here.
Having the ability to do something that others are unable to do can be viewed as a gift or a curse. For instance, if you have the ability to see only bad things that happen in the future, how would that affect your outlook on life? Would you view it as a curse, feeling that this is something that will happen no matter what you do, or would you view it as a gift that you were allowed to see them in an attempt to change the outcome? Martin’s collection of stories portrays a little bit of these elements with characters knowing certain things that they probably shouldn’t, but it is ultimately a choice that they make as to whether to put that knowledge to good use or ignore it and let bad things happen. What would you do? Would you allows deflect to the good side of things or does it depend on the circumstances?
Cassidy and Teag run an antiques shop called Trifles and Folly, a shop that has been in Cassidy’s family for generations. While a six hundred year old vampire may own the shop, Cassidy and her ancestors don’t mind continuing to run things. This shop is not just any shop though, they items that Cassidy and Teag collect are generally either cursed items or hold some type of sentimental value from the past with A LOT of baggage. Cassidy is able to read objects and see the history of an item by touching it while Teag is able to weave magic for things like protection and also hacking into systems easily. With their combined abilities, they assist Sorren with ridding the world—one cursed object at a time. Throughout the various stories, a sequence of life events are thrown into the mix of their many adventures, but each adventure grows darker and darker. Does that mean that Cassidy, Teag, and Sorren are growing stronger or will their time come faster than they think?
Martin seems to have some really great stories among this collection; however, there is so much wasted content where the background information of the characters are reiterated every single time. If these were all separate stories at one point in time, it would have been acceptable in those instance, but now as a collection—it does not make much sense. A book series is kind of like a television show for many readers. There is no rehashing of backgrounds like Martin does within these stories. It would have more than likely been beneficial to share a brief glimpse of previous events to jog the reader’s memory. Some of the word choices did not seem relevant or accurate to the scenes either. Since this review is based on the audiobook, the narration was not a particularly good fit for this book. The accent sounded forced and the pronunciation for many words throughout the stories did not flow well. With that being written, the story did have a general practiced theme and the stories did flow well together. If you are a reader of paranormal mysteries and urban fantasy, you may want to pick up this collection of books. Since this is the first collection, you should be able to jump right in.
An audiobook was provided to Turning Another Page by Audiobookworm Promotions and in no way affects the honesty of this review. We provide a three-star rating for Trifles and Folly by Gail N. Martin.
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