Ornery Reviews: Murder in Wizard's Wood

Modern Fantasy

Five out of Five Stars on Goodreads

I received a free copy of this book for review purposes.
If readers purchase a copy of the book through the preview link, I will receive a small commission from Amazon.
The following is a duplicate of my review on Goodreads.

Michael is as good as some better-known authors and better than many others. He builds worlds that come true as I read his stories. His intricate cast of characters both good and evil provides a rich experience on par with many popular fantasy movies. This story had me looking for magic in the ordinary as I did when I was young and immersed in reading Tolkien's work.

I give the book five stars because it is easily one of the best stories I've read in my 54 years. However, there were a few minor errors missed in the editing process, and I have two other nits to pick.

Authors, kindly learn that "obese" is not a nicer way to say fat. Obese is a slur used to dehumanize people with larger bodies, and does anyone actually wear muumuus? I think that Mama Yamai would not approve. By the way, Mama Yamai is a glorious fat badass of a sorceress. I hope she makes more appearances in future Bittergate stories.

Also, as a woman who suffered through 40 years of heavy, often excruciatingly painful periods before the Goddess finally took mercy on me and relieved me of that mess, I didn't find Jedadiah's "you need to take a Midol" joke particularly amusing. As a 400-year-old wizard, you'd think he'd have learned a bit more about women in his time, and I think Mama Yamai would back me up on this.
Nit-picking aside, you can count on seeing my reviews of Michael's work in the future. I am addicted to Bittergate, and if you enjoy exceptionally well-written modern fantasy, you will be too.

~Cie the Ornery Old Lady~

Free use image from Pixabay


  1. Thank you. It does sound intriguing though I would join you in your objections. It says wonders for the rest of it that you still give it 5 stars.

    1. Michael's a good guy. He didn't mean anything cruel. I would suggest that male authors stay away from talking about periods--period. I would suggest that all authors lose the obligatory fat joke for comedy relief. And yes, he is legitimately an incredibly talented author. I am jealous a.f. of his skills.


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