Book Review: The Curse by Jina S. Bazzar

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Last fall, I connected with a writer who was ‘putting the finishing touches’ on her debut novel just as I was at the time. Jina S. Bazzar was writing a new fantasy series and trying to decide how many books, where to split the plot lines, at what point to release each one. We chatted a few times, helped each other through some marketing plans and provided an ear whenever it was needed. She was really fun and engaging to talk with and I’m glad we connected.

Jina is also a mom, a writer at a fantastic magazine, Conscious Talk, and the author of a blog where she shares advice, life musings, reviews, book updates, and other fun content. She’s from Brazil, lives in the Middle East, and often has battles between different bugs! I say this with humor because of a few posts she’s shared about how she lets one bug stick around to help control another one. Spiders are involved, and it’s just scary to me! (Yes, I’m a baby apparently). Anyway, I digress…

Jina’s launched both her prequel short story, The Curse, and her first book in the series, Heir of Ashes. I will be reading Heir of Ashes this summer, but I took on the short story this week to immerse myself in the story… what a great thing to have something like this to introduce me to a new world… and if you read thru the review all the way to the end, you’ll find a way to get a copy for FREE! Let’s dive in…

Short Story Review

If you’ve read my book reviews before, you probably know that they tend to be mysteries, thrillers, historical or contemporary fiction; however, you also know I’m branching out to try a few different genres, including romance, fantasy and science fiction. An opportunity popped up to read a new book by debut author, Jina S. Bazzar, who has both a book and a prequel short story, The Curse, currently available. What a great opportunity to explore a new author and genre by reading her short story to get the ‘lay of the land’ before I dive into the details of a new fantasy series she’s currently writing.


I read the prequel eBook, The Curse, in less than an hour earlier this week via my iPad. With a title like this, and my interest in mysteries and suspense thrillers, who wouldn’t be intrigued! I’m normally not a reader in this genre because I prefer a clear understanding of all the rules and structure within the setting or world I’m reading about, and fantasy books often leave a lot to the imagination or surprise. Bazzar does a fantastic job providing details without over-building the background — just enough to wet your appetite to want to continue reading the series.

As I’m reading through the first half, I’m getting to know the characters, the background of the drama, the different types of creatures and/or humans… then suddenly, I see the emotional side of the The Curse beginning to form. I became invested quickly and as I finished the last few pages, I vividly remember thinking… “I may not get thoroughly excited by other worldly creatures, but wow, I’m definitely drawn in right now.” The impact of a decision the main character had to make and the loss of a connection (s)he suffers was enough to extract tons of emotion and hope for what could or might change to in the future to help find their way back together, save the family, or solve the battles between species. (Is that even the right word, species, when there are different types of humans, creatures, clans? I think I’m gonna learn something when I read the next book).

So… from a non-fantasy reader, this was the type of story that appealed across other genres and pulled this reader in. From secrets to mysterious plagues, future war to (un?)requited love, and family drama to trust, there’s a little bit of everything in this story. It excites me to keep reading, and that I plan to do in the next month when I take on the actual first book in the series, Heir of Ashes.

If you’re interested, you can download a copy of this short story for FREE via Smashwords. I hope you will, as this will give you a really intricate and eye-opening view into another world in a book with a strong writing style and a wonderful debut author. Kudos to Bazzar for tempting a non-reader in this genre to want to continue reading more.


About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. I write A LOT. I read A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge – words and humor. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.


29 thoughts on “Book Review: The Curse by Jina S. Bazzar

    Priyasha said:
    April 22, 2018 at 10:00 AM

    Great review ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    mistysbookspace said:
    April 22, 2018 at 10:31 AM

    I am currently reading Heir of Ashes and when I finish it I plan on pick up The Curse.

    Liked by 2 people

    authorsinspirations said:
    April 22, 2018 at 11:06 AM

    I want to say something profound, but – Wow, I’m kind of speechless. I love your review, the entire post. I’m humbled by it.
    Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

    The Cozy Pages said:
    April 22, 2018 at 11:11 AM

    Sounds like a great introduction to a series. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    Beware Of The Reader said:
    April 22, 2018 at 1:28 PM

    Yes you are branching out! To prepare a future romance writing maybe? 😉 LOL

    Liked by 2 people

      James J. Cudney IV responded:
      April 22, 2018 at 1:31 PM

      Hehe. Romance = curse. Interesting. Lol

      Liked by 1 person

      authorsinspirations said:
      April 23, 2018 at 4:10 AM

      I’d like to see what J would do if he was challenged to write a romance.

      Liked by 1 person

        James J. Cudney IV responded:
        April 23, 2018 at 7:23 AM

        I have to read some first to know what I’m doing. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        authorsinspirations said:
        April 23, 2018 at 7:31 AM

        nah ah, that will be cheating. what comes to your mind? Your heart? how do you think people should fall in love? gradually or like at first sight? in the club or by accident? If you have to research, do it after the first draft. I dare you, even if it’s just a short story.

        Liked by 1 person

        James J. Cudney IV responded:
        April 23, 2018 at 7:58 AM

        You make a good point. I will give this some thought… maybe when I get back home in June, I’ll spend a week seeing what I can do with it…

        Liked by 1 person

    Ooh! Nice review Jay! I’m picking this up right now.😊

    Liked by 1 person

    BrizzleLass said:
    April 22, 2018 at 4:46 PM

    Ooh this sounds interesting… Good to see you reading some fantasy!

    Liked by 2 people

    Martie said:
    April 22, 2018 at 8:01 PM

    I have a hard time with fantasy, science fiction and magical realism but your great review might pull me in.

    Liked by 1 person

    Rae Longest said:
    April 22, 2018 at 8:06 PM

    Your review was great! Very persuasive. I hate to expand my TBR shelves, but thanks to your great review, I may have to!

    Liked by 2 people

    Didi Oviatt - Author said:
    April 22, 2018 at 8:41 PM

    Great review! I love Jina’s writing, and I just downloaded this too! Can’t wait to read it 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    lisarey1990 said:
    April 28, 2018 at 4:58 PM

    Great review. I plan on reading this book.

    Liked by 1 person

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