Wild Card

Jen Cownie and Fiona Lensvelt. Pan Macmillan. (368p) ISBN 9781529082104

Wild Card

Wild Card

I was so pleased to receive a proof copy of this book from Pan Macmillan for a couple of reasons; the first was that I was revisiting tarot and needed a good book to help me with that, and the second was that I just loved the cover!

From the beginning I was drawn in by the warmth and conversational tone of the writing, this made it a much easier read than a traditional ‘How to’ book which I had been looking at before. Jen and Fiona made this a book that you want to revisit and hold your own conversation with.

I read a card or two before going to sleep as these are nice and short sections, this really worked for me and I gradually read the whole book start to finish and it did really helped get the memory working again about card reading and how I used to read for people.

I liked how the emphasis was on the more practical side of card reading over a way of predicting the future, involving the person you’re reading for throughout and not just going off on your own mystical journey.

Each suit, card, number, position, major arcana, gets well explored and explained in a way that demystifies and explains in equal measure, and the end section on card spreads is really helpful especially for beginners.

Throughout Jen and Fiona make it clear that the tarot is nothing to fear, that with practice and commitment you can approach reading confidently and with an attitude of positivity.

The clear explanations and tone make this a great book for both beginners and practitioners and was so good I’ve now bought the hard back to stay on the shelf.


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How to be a Hero

Cat Weldon. Pan Macmillan. (256p) ISBN 9781529045031

How to be a Hero

How to be a Hero

I received this from Pan Macmillan at the end of last year in exchange for a review, the way time has been going recently that feels like an absolute age ago.

How to be a Hero follows the (mis)adventures of Whetstone (a useless thief and an orphan) and Lotta (a pretty poor trainee Valkyrie) in a fast-paced, comedic tromp all over what we know of Norse Mythology

There are gigantic Vikings chasing Whetstone when he does eventually steal something, a giant dragon chasing Whetstone when he goes looking for the thing he stole, a Norse God chasing him to try and get what he’s stolen. There’s a lot of chasing going on.

There are plenty of mud and smelly jokes for the whole family, and Cat’s particular take on Viking history and personalities is hilarious.

As the mystery of what is going on unfolds we are taken through various aspects of Norse mythology, talking about various realms, gods, and denizens who could all become part of the story as it develops in the next two instalments still to come of this fun trilogy.


If you want to help and support this blog you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

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The Time of Green Magic

Hilary McKay. Pan Macmillan. (224p) ISBN 9781529019247

The Time of Green Magic

The Time of Green Magic

I was really lucky to get a proof copy of The Time of Green Magic from Macmillan as I really loved The Skylarks’ War and was looking forward to this.

When Theo and Polly met Abi’s life went through some big changes, two families blended, and she didn’t have her dad Theo all to herself anymore. More than that though she also had Max and Louis, two new stepbrothers to share everything with.

When they move into a mysterious ivy-clad new house for the extra space, mysterious happenings start to haunt them.

Shadows throughout the house and a mysterious visitor makes for a magical mysterious adventure with a real hint of danger.

Themes of change, growth, and familial love give this book a wonderful magical depth that needed a couple of read throughs to get everything out of it.


If you want to help and support this blog you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

You can always email me on contact@bigbeardedbookseller.com with any suggestions.

Storm Hound

Claire Fayers. Pan Macmillan. (256p) ISBN 9781509895045

Storm Hound

Storm Hound

Storm of Odin, youngest hound in the Wild Hunt, finds himself in a spot of trouble after falling to earth. He is no longer a gigantic, ravening force of nature tearing the very fabric of the sky apart, he is now a cute puppy with floppy ears and a flappy tail!

The tail weaves Welsh mythology into the modern day, old sorcerors, shape-shifting boys, and a trio of dark, but oh so stupid, wizards looking to steal the power of Storm to power their own magic and ambitions.

A wonderful adventure, that was so funny I was snorting in public (strange looks in Nero), the sections of misunderstanding between Storm and the human world are hilarious and so well written you would think Claire had first hand experience.

I loved this so much I actually had to read it a second time to make sure it was a 5-star book that I will be recommending to everyone and their granny.

I received a copy of Storm Hound from NetGalley for an honest review.


If you want to help and support this blog you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

You can always email me on contact@bigbeardedbookseller.com with any suggestions.