Book Review: Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones (Zoraida Grey Book 1) by Sorchia DuBois

 
 
Zoraida's grandmother has always taught her about magic, but it's not until Granny sends Zoraida to Scotland, to visit relatives she never knew she had in order to steal a healing stone, that she realizes there's a lot Granny never told her. Once in Scotland, Zoraida and her best friend, Zhu, find themselves surrounded by betrayal, family intrigue, and witches far more powerful than they imagined, and they realize getting the stone may be the least of their worries.
 

 
Book Review: Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones (Zoraida Grey Book 1) by Sorchia DuBois | reading, books, book reviews, fantasy, urban fantasy, witches
Title: Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones
Author:
Publisher:
Series:
Book Number: Book 1 of TBA
Pages: 269
My Book Rating: 3.5 Stars
More Info: Goodreads, Amazon, Publisher
 
Review:

*I received an ecopy of this book from the author via Lovers of Paranormal. This has in no way influenced my review.*

The blurb actually does a perfect job of explaining what this book is about, so family intrigue, mystery, sexy but possibly psychopathic Scottish witches, magical stones, a creepy castle—you will definitely find all of those things in this story! And they made for a mysterious and fun read.

One thing I liked most was the main character herself, Zoraida. She was realistic and seemed to have her priorities straight. She made good decisions, she stayed focused on her goal rather than getting sidetracked by hot guys, and she was loyal to her granny (who raised her) and her best friend. Also, I know this is going to sound oddly specific, but there was one scene in which someone attacked her right when she got out of the shower and was still in her underwear, and I liked that instead of being all preoccupied and self-conscious in a life-threatening situation the way characters often are, she just fought back and didn’t worry about what she was wearing. She even had a bit of humor sometimes. She wasn’t perfect though, she just had the right good traits to be likeable.

The friendship between Zoraida and Zhu was nice too. I feel like I didn’t get to see a whole lot of it, but their friendship was clearly strong and portrayed in a positive way.

I also really liked the Scottish setting. I don’t think I had ever read any books set in Scotland, and I had fun doing the accent in my head ;-)

My only complaint is that the book was maybe a little slow-paced, but, as I said, it was full of mystery, and it seems like this was more of a setup for crazier things to come in future books. It did have its own goal and a plot and all that, but the book was still more focused on uncovering secrets and learning about the family history Zoraida didn’t even know existed.

So overall this book had some fun mysteries and secrets, a likeable main character, solid writing, and a bit of humor, and it was an enjoyable start to the series!

 
 
Book Blurb

Granny’s dying, but Zoraida can save her with a magic crystal of smoky quartz. Too bad the crystal is in Scotland—in a haunted castle—guarded by mind-reading, psychopathic sorcerers.

Getting inside Castle Logan is easy. Getting out––not so much. Before she can snatch the stone, Zoraida stumbles into a family feud, uncovers a wicked ancient curse, and finds herself ensorcelled by not one but two handsome Scottish witches.

Up to their necks in family intrigue and smack-dab in the middle of a simmering clan war, Zoraida and her best friend Zhu discover Granny hasn’t told them everything.

Not by a long shot.

Basic Info

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Publisher:
Series:
Genre: ,
My Book Rating:
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Setting Location: , ,

More Info (Possible Spoilers)

Non-Human Type:
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Other:
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Warnings

Sex:
Violence:
Strong Language:

 
 

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    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol yeah, I’m started to get that feeling of stress because I have not just an out of control general TBR but so many books that I want to read RIGHT NOW, and I need to get that under control. This was a good one though :-)

  1. Greg

    I kinda like that blurb. Of course Granny’s lying lol. The family intrigue and the humor sound good, and of course a character who has their head on straight and doesn’t make stupid decisions… amazing how rare that can be! Nice to hear the MC is smart.

    The names are fun too… Zoraida and Zu. .

    Greg recently posted: Fandom Mashups #9

    1. Kristen Burns

      Haha, right? It figures :-P She definitely one those feisty grannies. It is rare to find characters with common sense, so it’s nice when they do come along.

      Idk about you, but I’d never heard the name Zoraida before, so I didn’t even know what ethnicity to picture her until she was described lol. But yeah they are unique names :-)

    1. Kristen Burns

      Ok but have you ever noticed that most characters do get all bent out of shape about that?! It’s like, you’re fighting for your life right now! Why are you worried about modesty?! Or you just got gravely injured and almost died! Why are you worried about who might’ve seen your body when they removed your clothes to treat your wound?! Sorry for the rant, I guess that’s just one of my reading pet peeves lol. This was good though. I wonder if the next book might not be quite so slow-paced now that some things have gone down.

  2. Bookworm Brandee

    I think I’d like to check out this one, Kristen. I like that Zoraida is so “real” and I really, really like when a strong grandma is incorporated into a story. :D The strong female friendship is a bonus as well even if you didn’t feel like you got to see enough of it. :) And yay for Scottish accents! ;) lol

    Bookworm Brandee recently posted: Blogger Chick Chat ~ The Pact ~ Karina Halle

    1. Kristen Burns

      Granny is an interested one lol, even though she’s not present for most of the book. It is hard to find sensible protags though, so it does make me happy to find characters like Zoraida. And I agree, it’s just nice when female friendship is portrayed well, even if I didn’t get to see a whole lot of it. I do love those Scottish accents :-P

  3. Rowena

    Great review, Kristen! Zoraida sounds like my kind of heroine. I like that she was focused and not all about the hot guys. If she was, I’d probably be annoyed because hello? Stealing crap from powerful and dangerous witches is going to be hard, don’t be dumb by getting distracted by pretty faces! She sounds like a smart cookie (because who has time to worry about being naked when you’re being attacked? Kill or be killed people! :D), too bad the story was a bit slow. That’s always a bummer. Still, I’ll be keeping my eye on this seris.

    Rowena recently posted: Review: Undrafted

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! I agree, I’d been annoyed too if all she did was swoon and lose focus. Her task was definitely hard enough already. And seriously, I don’t understand what’s wrong with all these other characters who are all worried about the possibility of someone seeing their body when their LIVES are on the line?! The slow pace wasn’t too bad though. If you’re interested, I’d definitely say to keep your on eye on the series :-)

  4. sjhigbee

    This one sounds really appealing – I love the idea of half-mad witches inhabiting one of those many Scottish castles that are dotted around the countryside:). Thank you for sharing this one.

  5. Lola

    That’s great when the blurb gives a good idea of where the book is about! Zoraida does sound like a likeable character who has her priorities straight. And indeed that is very specific, but I do agree that while you might feel uncomfortable getting attacked when you’re not wearing that much it’s more important to focus on the situation than your discomfort and it’s also more realistic that way.

    I haven’t read a lot of books set in Scotland, although it does sound like a fun setting to read about. I did got a cozy mystery that takes place there recently. I hope I can read it soon. I’ve visited Scotland myself and it doesn’t happen often I can read a book set in a country that I’ve visited.

    1. Kristen Burns

      I feel like blurbs being accurate is becoming more and more rare nowadays lol, so it seemed worth mentioning. That whole worrying about someone seeing their body even when they’re in danger thing just aggravates me every time I come across it. Like, you’re fighting! Or you’re dying! Would you seriously rather die than have someone who doesn’t even care see your body???

      Oh that’s cool that you’ve been to Scotland, it would be fun to read a book set there then :-) I’ve not been anywhere out of the country except Canada, Mexico, and some places in the Caribbean. But I do get to read lots of books set in my own country, so I can’t complain about not being able to find books in countries I’m familiar with lol.

    1. Kristen Burns

      I should’ve realized you might be interested in this one, it does seem like one you might enjoy from what I know of your taste! That’s what I was thinking too, that certain types of series are a bit slow to start but that this might pick up the pace in the next book.

  6. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    Wow, this sounds like an interesting read. I mean q creepy castle in Scotland? That’s a cool enough setting to catch my interest and it does sound like a fun book. I think this may be one I have to check out. Also that shower ambush sounds like a really good one. I love when characters have their priorities straight when it comes to defending themselves. Fight now worry later. Great review.

    1. Kristen Burns

      It was fun and interesting :-) And yes, exactly, *priorities.* I get so annoyed when characters are more worried about someone possibly seeing their body than they are about their LIFE. Thanks :-)