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The Saffron Falcon: A Transition Magic Thriller by [Hopkins, J. E.]
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The Saffron Falcon: A Transition Magic Thriller Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"The Saffron Falcon by J. E. Hopkins is one of those books that I might have passed up but I am glad this book was sent to me because I am truly a believer in Fantasy Fiction now. It is the perfect mix of suspense, real-world character development and humor."
--Rebecca Fortelka, Oakland Examiner, examiner.com

About The Scarlet Crane, Book 1 of Transition Magic:
 
"The Scarlet Crane is a thriller in every sense of the word, but it's also so much more. J. E. Hopkins tells a great story, delves into the humanity of strong and believable characters, and builds a world where transition, a brief and deadly time in every pubescent child's life when magic is possible, threatens not only to kill the young, but to overturn the world order itself. This is a terrific book and J. E. Hopkins is an exciting new writer."
 --Shelley Singer, author of "Blackjack" and the Jake Samson mystery series.

About the Author

J. E. Hopkins is the author of the fantasy thrillers The Scarlet Crane and The Saffron Falcon (Twitter: @jhopkinsbooks).

Born on the leading edge of the baby boom, he entered and won an elementary school contest with an article on Wilkie Collin's The Moonstone. The article was published in the local county newspaper and was his last publication for more than fifty years, until The Scarlet Crane in 2012. 

Which is not to say that the intervening years were a complete waste--his career taught him toilet paper design, software development, educational technologies for assessing student learning, and bumblebee energetics.

A life-long voracious reader, his writing influences include Isaac Asimov, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Douglas Preston/Lincoln Child. And John Connolly, Greg Bear, and Rosa Montero. And...
Some might say that he's easily influenced.

It may have taken a few decades, but he's finally living his dream of writing full-time. He and his wife live near Cincinnati with two demon cats, Carbon and Boron.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2034 KB
  • Print Length: 329 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Unseen Worlds Publishing; 2 edition (January 13, 2014)
  • Publication Date: January 13, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00FEG3LSI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #782,238 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thoroughly enjoyed this.

I first read the The Scarlet Crane: (Transition), mostly out of obligation. A man I respect wrote it so I had to at least read it. I would say I read and enjoy some fiction; occasionally, maybe half a dozen books a year. I do like sci-fi and spy novels, but I have never been big on fantasy type stuff.

The Scarlet Crane was good, wasn't awesome, but it was good. It kept me entertained enough to finish it. I gave it 4 stars because that's how I honestly felt. It was a 4 star book, not 3 and not 5.

Then I heard Jim speak of a sequel, or at least part 2 of many. And then it happened; he shipped it. I grabbed it the day it was released because I'm cheap and it was like $2 bucks on launch day.

This book is heads above the first book, and builds nicely on the foundations and characters of that book.

I thought Mr. Hopkins let the cat out of the bag about 75% of the way through. I thought to myself; "Ah, I can see how this ends." I put the book down that night and wasn't sure I would finish it. I was sure I had it figured out, but I was wrong and am glad I did. While the ending was close to what I imagined, it was different enough to keep me entertained and flipping pages.

Everything was better with this book; better descriptions, better storytelling, better character development.

Bravo Jim, well done.

I am looking forward to the next book in the series.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Second book in the series for the Author and it seems Jim has really found the pace and voice of the story here! I thought the first book was good, "The Saffron Falcon" was much better. Pacing is good, concept very good and refreshing and Jim is getting better at making the characters connectable. I am looking forward to "The Ebony Finch" next and also the fourth upcoming book promised! Let us see where the Author can take this series, can the characters still grow?
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was initially put off by the Transition Series description because it included the words "children" and "magic" in it - two things that I don't normally associate with a good read. The series was recommended to me by a good friend, however, so I decided to give it a chance. I am writing my first Amazon book review because I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Don't let those words trip you up...this isn't a kiddie series.

A sequel to "The Scarlet Crane," this book uses the same formula of weaving its tale through the lives of disparate adolescents facing transition and the exploits of protagonist John Benoit. With this iteration, however, the character development is deeper and the storyline and pacing more polished. Clearly, Hopkins is hitting his stride. I'm already looking forward to future installments of the Transition Series to add to my Kindle library.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If possible, J.E. Hopkins’ The Saffron Falcon, is as good or better than the first in his series of fantasy thrillers, The Scarlet Crane. Again, I was amazed at the colorful detail as the author moves his characters back and forth between centuries from Kansas, to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Italy, France, the Han Empire, to Washington, D.C., and the U.S. spook agencies. The action is non-stop, written in wonderful descriptive prose that keeps the reader’s imagination firing from the first page to the last. Hopkins is more than deserving of a 5+ rating for this enthralling story.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The chain of events that unfolds from the discovery of the ancient codex is a chilling reminder that once a secret is shared, it's no longer a secret. It's also a reminder of the damage that can be done when people are put in charge who don't have a clue, or who are unaware that their worldview isn't shared by everyone else. John Benoit and his partner, Stony Hill, have the job of trying to prevent the disastrous consequences that could result from the discovery of the codex and are hampered by the actions of their new boss. This story will keep you turning pages to find out what happens next, and leave you eager for more.

The writing is clear and the descriptions create vivid pictures of foreign lands and interesting people. I would like to have a better idea of who John Benoit is, though, rather than simply be entertained by what he does and says. Same with Stony Hill. This book comes close to 5-star territory, but it's not quite there.
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Format: Kindle Edition
The Saffron Falcon is an epic thriller/fantasy story. It's the second in a series, though it <strong><em>can </em></strong>be read as a standalone novel. I'll summarize a few things you need to know before starting the book.

All children in the world enter Transition during puberty. Transition is a month long period of time during which they have the capability to use magic. In order to use magic, however, they must recite the sacred words of the transition ritual, their hearts must be pure, and the task they wish magic to accomplish must be unique. And that's the rub. If the child's wish isn't unique, the child <em><strong>will die</strong></em>.

Because of this risk, most parents, government organizations, and religious leaders refuse to teach modern children the ritual words. It's simply too risky. In 2015 (present day in this book), the general belief is that magic has been around for so long that there are no unique wishes left in the world.

But then...rumors surface. Rumors of another verse to the transition ritual. A verse that would eliminate the need for a child's wish to be unique. The text detailing that hidden verse was unearthed and then...well...things get a little crazy.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I wavered between 4 and 5 stars the entire time I was reading it. There were a few minor editing issues, primarily in the first few chapters, but they weren't so egregious that they distracted from the story. The only major issue I had with the book was that it often jumped around in history. We'd be in ancient times for a chapter, then 2015, then back to ancient times again, and then back to the present. It felt very...schismadic.
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