Synopsis - From Goodreads
Sacrificial Oath by Terri Rochenski - An impetuous act unwittingly makes Alesuela the fulfillment of the Sovereign's Blood Oath to their Goddess. In five days, she'll be forced to make the greatest choice of her life: become the virginal sacrifice already promised, or force the man she loves most to die in her place. With an impossible choice in front of her, she searches for ways to undo the oath, and in her quest, finds not everything in her life is as she expects.
The Amulet of Ormisez by J. Keller Ford - There is only one way to save Elton Fletcher's brother from an insanity-ridden death. After years away from home, fighting for his people, Elton returns to discover his only sibling, Cayden, possessed by greed and malice, and responsible for malicious, unthinkable deeds. Cayden, though, isn't the only one afflicted by the Amulet of Ormisez, and Elton finds himself in yet another battle, where the price of failure could be his own life.
Birthright by Lynda R. Young - Christa can mask the pain and hide the scars, but running from a birthright is impossible. She's tried to escape her grief by fleeing to a small town in Florida. Much to her frustration, the locals think they recognize her even though she's never been there before. To make things worse, a man named Jack spouts outrageous theories about her. Both spur Christa to bolt, to start fresh yet again, but there's something about Jack that intrigues her enough to stay. The only problem? Someone else wants her to leave, and they won't stop until she's dead.
Petrified by Kelly Said - A mysterious storm has replaced summer with winter, devastating crops and smothering Castle lands in snow. Prince Sterling August stands alone as a leader, lost in personal grief as well as a desire to help his people but with an inability to do either. The answers he needs await him, but without Lochlyn, a woman who's just as isolated as Sterling, he'll never see what stands before him, cloaked in illusion.
Last Winter Red by Jennifer M. Eaton - Emily is a Red, a woman whose sole purpose in life is to produce offspring. When her husband dies and leaves her childless, she risks her life and forsakes the safety of Terra-a disease-free city born after the nuclear holocaust. Beyond its boundaries, she knows, survives a man with whom she can be properly paired. The Outside, though, holds secrets the government struggles to keep, and what Emily discovers on her quest for a mate will change her life forever.
Escort to Insanity by J.A. Belfield - From a charity auction, to a stroll in the park, to the craziest night of her life. Nicole Harrington can't help but wonder how a simple event went so drastically wrong. Of course, the male escort she booked is wholly to blame. Not only charming b
Make believe is a collection of 6 fantasy and paranormal short stories. The content and feel of the stories are varied; from Terry Rochenski’s tale of a girl forced to sacrifice herself to a goddess to save her father, to Jennifer M Eaton’s interesting fantasy dystopian crossover about two civilisations that both believe the other to be diseased.
Sacrificial Oath by Terri Rochenski – I thought this was a beautiful, well written story. Showing a girl whose mistake means she must be sacrificed to a goddess live her final days this is a tale about love and someone willing to give up their own life for someone else.
The Amulet of Ormisez by J. Keller Ford - This story had a nice idea but it felt very rushed, nothing seemed to be explained particularly well and the ending in particular felt very hurried. I think this probably would have worked much better as a longer novel.
Birthright by Lynda R. Young - Birthright was an interesting tale but I didn’t find it to be particularly memorable and it was overshadowed by all the other excellent stories in this anthology.
Petrified by Kelly Said – I thought Petrified was a lovely little fantasy story. It has a fairy tale quality to it that made it unique and I loved the concept about Wiccae and I think this world would make a great basis for a longer book.
Last Winter Red by Jennifer M. Eaton – This was probably my favourite story; it is just so intriguing. The idea behind it is brilliant and Jennifer is clearly a brilliant writer. She perfectly portrayed someone who is learning that their entire life has been a lie and leaving behind everything they have ever known.
Escort to Insanity by J.A. Belfield – J.A.Belfield is an excellent writer whose books are always amazing so I had high expectations for Escort to Insanity and it did not disappoint. It was funny, tense and action packed all at the same time. Definitely a story to read.
Whilst I prefer reading longer books, short stories in an anthology like this give you an opportunity to sample the writing style of several authors and you might just find some that you love. My two favourite stories in this anthology were Last Winter Red by Jennifer M Eaton and Escort to Insanity by J A Belfield. Whilst I have read and enjoyed many of Belfield’s books already, I have not read anything of Eaton’s but after how good her short story was I definitely intend to read other books she writes in the future.