Monday, August 3, 2020

Macario's Scepter; M.J. McGriff

Title: Macario's Scepter
Series: The Magian Series #1
Author: M.J. McGriff
Genre: Fantasy; Magic; Pirates; Young Adult
Publication date: April 13, 2020
Publisher: Lulu

An unlikely Chosen One, her pirate captain ex-lover, and a treasure-hunting nun must save the world.
Samara is a ship wrecked at sea. She can’t seem to get anything right, especially her love life. Her former pirate captain, the famous Baz Blackwater, broke her heart and stranded her on an island of religious hypocrites. Samara wants nothing more than to escape to the freedom of the sea, so when her ex-lover shows up offering a chance at a magical treasure—and secret revenge—she jumps at the chance.Seraphina prays every day for her wayward twin sister to stop chasing the pirate life and find the peace she’s discovered in her own quiet life at the convent. But Samara has nothing but contempt for her sister’s beliefs and religious rituals. Yet when Seraphina uncovers an ancient prophecy revealing the horrifying curse of the treasure Samara and Baz seek, she must leave her convent—risking the wrath of her Order—and search for the truth about Macario’s scepter.In a world of friendship and betrayal, monsters and magic, seedy pubs and adventure on the high seas, will Samara’s magical powers, Baz’s cunning plans, and Seraphina’s unshakable faith be enough to slay a cursed sea serpent destroying everything they love?

*A Thank you to Booksirens for allowing me to read this in exchange for a honest and unbiased review*


Hello Fellow Readers,

I was really excited for this book. It's been such a long time since I've read a pirate adventure, with the added benfit of magic and a prophecy I was hoping I would be in for a wild ride. The story mostly focuses on two sisters Samara and Seraphina, also every once in a while on Baz a pirate captain. 

It took me way longer that I would care to admit to actually like Samara, and I am not even sure if I actually do. She was just way too rash and careless, but I loved Seraphina and was so invested in her chapters. She was so level-headed. Baz was okay but we don't really get to see his character develop until the end of the book. Since this is a series I am hoping McGriff has us seem him grow more. 

I like the would building happening in this book, I wish we were given a bit more to go off of but I appreciate the lack of exposition dump that happens when an author typically explains the history of their world. I think McGriff shined during the action scenes, which got me into the story to get me curious on where it's going and the ramifications of everything for the next book in the series. 

The romance aspect was a little weak, more explaining rather than showing. Samara and Baz already had a history before the book started so we just have to go off of that rather than seeing them fall in love. There was just so much pining with Samara simultaneously loving and hating on Baz and him running hot and cold with her. 

Overall, a good first novel that I can't wait to see where it goes.


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