Title: Dwarves and Daisies: A Cozy Holiday Urban Fantasy Story
Publisher: Firefly Tales
Author: Scott Walker
Pages: 76pp
Price: $0.99 (ebook)

Melina Morgan has lived in the tiny town of Cold Creek, North Carolina for most of her life. She moved there as a child after her mother was murdered by the fae — and Melina has spent the years since carefully avoiding anything even remotely associated with the creatures. She works a normal job, keeps her house warded, and doesn’t let anyone know that she can see through fae glamours …. Then she wakes up in the middle of the night to find a dwarf snoring beneath her bedroom window. And her neighbor’s dog goes missing. And then other residents report seeing horrible, wolf-like creatures by the lake. When Melina finally works up the courage to talk to the dwarf, she is in for a life-changing surprise ….

The cozy fantasy genre is relatively new, so stories can be difficult to find. Thankfully, I stumbled across Dwarves and Daisies in a FaceBook group dedicated to the subject. This is a delightful novella with wonderful characters, a nasty villain, some neat monsters, lots of yummy food, and a satisfying conclusion that leads neatly into the forthcoming Manhattan Magic series.

I really like Melina. She just wants to live a normal life, hanging out with her Dad and her best friend, baking, and writing user manuals (someone has to translate all of that tech speak into everyday English). But her Sight allows her to see things that no one else can, and she feels an obligation to protect those around her from the fae — beings she was taught to fear and avoid. Only that may not be accurate, and Melina’s reaction to that revelation is completely understandable. She’s angry, confused, and hurt. Did her mother lie to her all those years ago? Or was her mother lied to, as well? And if so, why?

Nod the dwarf is pretty awesome, too. Unlike most other fae, he can handle iron, which comes in very handy during the Epic Battle of Melina’s Backyard. He’s patient with Melina, recognizing that she is ignorant of a great many truths, but he’s also excited to deal with the evil that is threatening Cold Creek. After all, there’s nothing quite like a good brawl with a beasty or three.

As of this writing, Dwarves and Daisies is free on Amazon, but its usual price of $0.99 is well worth it.

Recommended to fans of Between by LL Starling, Legends and Lattes by Travis Baldree, Soot and Slipper by Kate Stradling, Bookshop Witch by T. Thorn Coyle, the Sonoma Witches series by Gretchen Galway, The Outlier Prophecies by Tina Gower, and Welcome to Potion Con by RK Ashwick.

[Reviewed by Rebecca Buchanan.]

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