Origins of Gods
I'm a big fan of "warped mythology" such as that in Rick Riordan's works. So the second Ness branded Hadrian with the nickname Hades, I went from fascinated to obsessed. With an intriguing blend of fairy tale and mythology, Larissa works a magic all her own over her audience and holds them captive to the very end. Which is still not here. The first in what is clearly an epic series, we are left with questions. Will Persephone and Hadrian be together again? Is Mercer a god now? Did they accidentally leave sweet, sweet Cerberus behind? Because I don't remember her going back home! Then again, dog. She'll find her way.
Clearly, I'm excited for more, and there is a literal pantheon of reasons. Check this read out!
The short work found here is a quaint, sweet piece with a dark spin. We've seen this trope before: a poor hero takes pity on his/her fellow civilians. However, "Street Code" takes it to a new level by adding ghosts.
I found the fast pace to be absorbing, but yearned to hear what was left behind. The author refers to the robbery of a bank, but does not actually transport us to the location. As a teaser, this chapter works, yet I crave the substance that would make the events of the current piece meaningful.
I am also unsure of the amount of technical skill this writer has. Repetitive phrases, strange imagery, and odd word choice made reading difficult. "Baubles" especially threw me, as the connotation indicates a mundane or useless item.
The concept, though, seems solid, and, much like "The Sixth Sense," I find myself wanting Jadestreak to continue his good work with the deceased and living alike.
I want to be nice...
The imagery in this story is vivid, and the concept is entertaining, but... oh, boy.
The problem is that "The Buddhist Devils" takes two already well founded religions and smashes them, almost indiscernibly together. To compare this tale to food, it is as though I was served something between two slices of bread that looked great. Once I bit into it, though, I could no longer tell if I was eating peanut butter or grilled cheese.
Research. Always, always, always do research on your world. If the writer here had done research, Lucifer and Satan would not be two different people.
This could be a good story, but it requires a serious rewrite.
House of New Thought
This story is absolutely fascinating. I have always love the premise of raising a child to be a weapon. The concept is not new, but it is a great tactic to create tension, as it does here. Dmitri becomes the battleground of a war waged for supremacy between well-rounded characters.
However, that is not to say that the story is perfect.
The main trouble with the story is that there is no reader character. All the characters in the story understand what is going on for the most part, save for the secrets that need to be saved. This means that readers who don't understand the concepts of the "spheres" and "orbs" in the world(s) continue to be lost in the story. It is a classic technique, and for good reason, that one of the characters be naïve or oblivious. We lack this character in the story. As a result, I felt a bit lost when some aspects of the story were brought up.
I hope that Abbott continues to write and revise this story. My advice is to add a prologue in which readers may meet Driana as she is pulled from her unsuspecting life and thrust into the story, cynical, scared, and surprised at this world beyond the one she knew.