Tag Archives: Calli Courtnae

Angell, Lorena (co-authored by Joshua Angell): The Diamond Bearers’ Destiny (The Unaltered IV)

The Diamond Bearer's Destiny

As with the previous covers for The Unaltered serial (need to read them in order) I really like this cover. As the very good thief I am, I stole a compilation of the three others from Angell’s site:

The unaltered series

Once upon a time a human became Crimson. She was the first human with a jewel inserted into her heart. Then came Mathea and later on others. With the abilities brought on by being Diamond Bearers these people were able to help humanity survive and to look for unaltered people. Unaltereds are the only ones who can become a Diamond Bearer and the only way to be an unaltered is to have no special powers at all. In the world of Calli Courtnae, Chris Harding and the rest just about every person has some degree of super-natural ability.

Then along comes Freedom (Henry) and General Harding (Chris’ father). Sometimes the combination of two people can bring about amazing results. In Freedom and General Harding’s case these results were amazingly destructive for people who have more than a smidgen of power. Trouble looms.

The Diamond Bearers’ Destiny starts off with an information dump that lets Calli know why Chris acted as he did in The Diamond of Freedom. For the length of the novel the info-dump is too long. I like the manner in which it was done – by having Calli read Chris’ memories.

Calli meets Crimson for the first time when she meets up with Chris and ends up reading his memories. Crimson tries to make Calli understand just how important she views the freedom to choose. Crimson’s explanation of her world-view is not too long in and of itself. On top of the information dump it is. Once Angell spread the philosophical moments with action we once again started moving into the action/thrillerish nature of the other three Unaltered novels.

The Unaltered serial is definitely for young adults. Both violence and romance is kept extremely innocent. I think even the strictest parents would allow their children to read this kind of content.

Although Brand doesn’t get to be as fun this time around, he does get to show off a bit. For those who are interested in romance, there is even some of that. Chris and Calli are a bit mushy for me, but then they have been all along. Very few romantic descriptions avoid my mushy label.

I found the consequence for Diamond Bearers who tried to go against nature interesting. Whether Calli stuffing the diamond into Jonas’ chest qualifies as one such action is a worry for Crimson (and Calli once she gets to know how serious something like that is).

In The Diamond Bearers’ Destiny Deus Ex and General Harding’s are both obsessed with having their own diamonds. Both are driven by fear of some other person being more powerful than themselves. Aahhh, the ever-present lure of power.

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My review of:

  1. Diamond in My Pocket
  2. Diamond in My Heart
  3. The Diamond of Freedom

Angell, Lorena (co-authored by Joshua Angell): The Diamond of Freedom (The Unaltered III) (2013)

Cover design by Lorena Angell

Great cover. You will find each item in the novel.

Thanks again to Lorena Angell for providing me with a reviewer’s copy. Does receiving a copy influence the review I write? I would hope not, but knowing human nature it probably does to some extent. I try to be aware of this possibility. Hopefully that does not make me harder on the author than I need to be.

A Diamond in my Heart is my favorite of the three novels. Brand is probably part of the reason. I like him a lot more than Chris.

Chris is difficult to get a handle on. I’m sure that is Angell’s intention. Is he for Mathea’s work or is he against? How does he tackle the whole situation with Calli? It is obvious he at least lusts for her and he has previously seemed to love her (according to surface thoughts). But loving a person does not necessarily mean that we look out for their best interests.

Calli is even more confounded by Chris’ behavior than I am. It must be weird having a person change their behavior toward you almost from day to day. Realising the seriousness of having a shard of diamond lodged in her heart is a process. Coming to accept that protecting her heart also means keeping a distance between herself and Chris would also be difficult.

Freedom craves having Calli’s shard in his possession. He will go to any length to get it. Killing her is only part of it.

Brand’s ability to repeat comes in quite handy in The Diamond of Freedom. Life would be a whole lot more difficult without him.

There was plenty of action in The Diamond of Freedom. At the beginning of the novel Chris and Calli are on the run after Brand saved their lives. They are trying to stay off-radar but are finding that a challenge. From there on we go from one adventure to the other. Some of it is kind of funny (like the biker gang) and Chris’ uncle was adorable (yes I mean that). Kind of cute in his own way.

We are told a bit more about the world of Mathea and meet some of the other Diamond-bearers. I’m left wondering what sort of person I would be after 5000 years. How would it be possible to keep up her motivation for keeping the world in balance for all that time? Is it even possible to retain all of the flighty emotions we short-lived people have? Thankfully I will never find out.

How do I know Lorena Angell (and her son Joshua) have created a well-written fantasy novel? I am left wondering and pondering the characters and their future. That really is the sign of a good series/serial. The author has to keep her readers interested in the story-line and characters that live in it. Good job Lorena. I certainly want to read the next addition to The Unaltered series.


My reviews of books no. 1 (A Diamond in my Pocket) and 2 (A Diamond in my Heart).

Angell, Lorena: A Diamond in my Heart (The Unaltered II) (2012)

Cover design by Lorena Angell

First of all, I would like to thank Lorena Angell for sending me a review copy of A Diamond in my Heart.

While each novel is a stand-alone, they are part of a series and as such are best read in order.

Now we’re talking. A Diamond in my Heart is a much tighter book than A Diamond in my Pocket. Angell has cracked the code to the flow. Flowing demands a lot of an author and is probably not always a fun process. As with A Diamond in my Pocket I like the cover of A Diamond in my Heart. I don’t know if it was intentional, but the print in my copy was a little strange at times. It would change type and parts of it was highlighted.

Calli still has the shard of diamond lodged in her heart. That shard enables her to do things like read minds when she concentrates, read emotions, heal, run fast and hunt. For her abilities to blossom completely Calli will need to have the whole diamond lodged in her heart. I found that Callie had grown as a person. There is less angst and more acceptance of life as it is.

Calli’s side-kick is Brand. Brand is a horny senior whose main goal in life seems to be to have sex with every girl on the planet – at least every girl he encounters. He is the quarterback so that should help. But you would think not all girls would fall for whatever lines he uses. Strangely enough they do and the other guys at school are not happy with. Calli doesn’t get it and when she doesn’t fall for Brand’s lines they end up becoming friends. For some bizarre reason I loved him. I hope he turns up in the next novel as well.

Calli’s mentor is Mathea (from A Diamond in my Pocket). Mathea helps Calli understand the responsibilities that come with being a diamond bearer. Turns out they are supposed to keep the world in balance. We get some background information on Mathea. She sure is one strange cookie.

Calli’s enemy is Freedom. Freedom is a previous follower of Mathea who is now out to get Calli’s diamond for himself. He is a diamond bearer but no longer a follower of Mathea’s circle of diamond bearers. This is one seriously messed up dude. His sociopathic traits are fairly strong.

This time I thought the novel was too short. Angell kept me reading and her twists and take on her world was interesting. I like the fact that she has little or no previous experience with fantasy before writing these two novels. It doesn’t show, but then fantasy is about so much more than the flashy stuff. For those of you who worry about anything explicit be it violence or sex you can safely read these two novels.

Angell, Lorena: A Diamond in my Pocket (The Unaltered I) (2012)

a diamondA Diamond in my Pocket is book one of The Unaltered Series.

What would you do if you one day discovered you had an unexpected ability? Like running fast, really fast. Fast enough to break the world record. It would be a great ability to have if you had to run away from trouble (or maybe to).

Callie Courtnae suddenly discovers this ability and is asked to join a school in Montana that specialises in youth with record-breaking abilities. She goes and discovers that the people at her school are extraordinarily beautiful and a lot quicker than she herself is. Hmmm, I smell a rat.

The premise for A Diamond in my Pocket is pretty good. It is difficult to come up with something new in the world of fantasy. But Angell manages to put a couple of twists in that I don’t think I’ve read before. However, however, however. The characters needed a bit more work and the novel tightening. I wish A Diamond in my Pocket could have fulfilled its potential, because it did have plenty of that.