Category Archives: Book Reviews

Draven’s Light Cover Reveal

I am so excited to share with you the cover reveal for one of my favorite author’s latest novels! For those of you who are unfamiliar with Anne Elisabeth Stengl, she writes Christian fantasy with a fairytale feel (although none of her Tales of Goldstone Wood are actual fairytale retellings but stories from her own imagination). I love her work and I hope you will check out her stories. Now, onto the reveal for Draven’s Light!

In the Darkness of the Pit

The Light Shines Brightest

Drums summon the chieftain’s powerful son to slay a man in cold blood and thereby earn his place among the warriors. But instead of glory, he earns the name Draven, “Coward.” When the men of his tribe march off to war, Draven remains behind with the women and his shame. Only fearless but crippled Ita values her brother’s honor.

The warriors return from battle victorious yet trailing a curse in their wake. One by one the strong and the weak of the tribe fall prey to an illness of supernatural power. The secret source of this evil can be found and destroyed by only the bravest heart.

But when the curse attacks the one Draven loves most, can this coward find the courage he needs to face the darkness?

Coming May 25, 2015

Draven's Light

Read an excerpt from Draven’s Light! dravenslightnovel

Want a chance to win an advance copy of Draven’s Light? Then follow the link to Anne’s rafflecopter giveaway!

Already know you want to ready it? Pre-order Draven’s Light today!

Anne Elisabeth StenglANNE ELISABETH STENGL makes her home in North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, Rohan, a kindle of kitties, and one long-suffering dog. When she’s not writing, she enjoys Shakespeare, opera, and tea, and practices piano, painting, and pastry baking. She is the author of the critically-acclaimed Tales of Goldstone Wood. Her novel Starflower was awarded the 2013 Clive Staples Award, and her novels Heartless, Veiled Rose, and Dragonwitch have each been honored with a Christy Award.

To learn more about Anne Elisabeth Stengl and her books visit: www.AnneElisabethStengl.blogspot.com

Book Giveaways

Many of the authors at Enclave Publishing are doing Goodreads giveaways this month (including my own book). Here is a list of the books and links to their giveaways. Hopefully you find some great reads listed here!

Daughter of LightDaughter of Light (Follower of the Word #1) by Morgan L. Busse

Crosswind

Crosswind (Sark Brothers, #1) by Steve Rzasa

A Time to Die

A Time to Die (Out of Time Series, #1) by Nadine Brandes

Firebird

Firebird by Kathy Tyers

By Darkness Hid

By Darkness Hid (Blood of Kings, #1) by Jill Williamson

To Darkness Fled (Blood of Kings, #2) by Jill Williamson

From Darkness Won (Blood of Kings, #3) by Jill Williamson

Never to Live

Never to Live by Just B. Jordan

Orphan's Song

Orphan’s Song (The Songkeeper Chronicles, #1) by Gillian Bronte Adams

Failstate: Nemesis

Failstate: Nemesis by John Otte

The Restorer

 The Restorer (Sword of Lyric Series, #1) by Sharon Hinck

A Star Curiously Singing

A Star Curiously Singing by Kerry Nietz

– See more at: http://www.enclavepublishing.com/enclave-books-giveaway/#sthash.7cP6wOUg.dpuf

Book Review: Oath of the Brotherhood

Oath of the BrotherhoodOath of the Brotherhood by C.E. Laureano is a Celtic fantasy and the first I’ve read of its kind.

The story revolves around Conor Mac Nir, a young nobleman gifted in music in a magical sort of way. When he plays the harp, he is able to draw on magic. But he’s not the only one with magical abilities. Aine is a noblewoman, healer, and able to see the future, though not always so clearly.

When the clans go to war, something deeper is paving the warpath, an ancient magic that wants to eradicate those who follow Balus. Conor and Aine race to find the harp of Meallachan, an instrument that under Conor’s power can turn back the tide of evil…if he can find it in time.

Oath of the Brotherhood was a very different kind of fantasy compared to the usual medieval fare. The names, the places, and the feel of the book were definitely Celtic in nature. As a fan of anything Celtic, I very much enjoyed this story.

The only thing I found hard were all the names and places at the beginning of the story, so it made it a bit of a slow read until I had the people and places firmly fixed in my mind.

Oath of the Brotherhood is the first book in The Song of the Seare series, so it ends with more to come.

I recommend Oath of the Brotherhood for those who enjoy fantasy.

 

*I was given a free copy in exchange for an honest review of the book

Teen Titans and Book Reviews

A couple days ago I was watching Teen Titans Go with my kids. In this particular episode Raven (one of the characters who is usually portrayed as intelligent and dark) introduces the rest of the Titans to reading. They fall in love with reading and want more. So they ask her what they should do next. She says they should start a book club and discuss their books. So they start a club and discuss their books and how much they loved their books.

A couple minutes into the meeting Raven says it’s  not enough to share how much they like their books. They need to go deeper. How? they ask. She starts with her own book by saying the premise of the book was unbelievable and goes on for a minute breaking her book down into tiny increments, dissecting each scene and word.

The Titans stare at her in horror. “You just took the fun out of reading!” they shout.

And that’s what I found interesting. I don’t think books were meant to be taken apart and each little section scrutinized and reviewed. Books are meant to be read as a whole. Enjoyed. Read and understood in their full context.

Sometimes I can’t articulate why I liked or didn’t like a book. I just know I liked it and it made me think. Or I didn’t like it because it left a bad feeling behind. Perhaps that is one reason I don’t like writing reviews (for the most part). Because I feel like I need to take the book apart and say why I did or didn’t like the book. Bleh.

I’ve seen reviews where the book is scrutinized down to its very words. I’ve even known people who read with a pad and pen next to them so they can take notes. I don’t think fiction was meant to be read like this. How do you get into the story when you’re constantly taking notes? Perhaps that’s just me.

The episode ends when the Titans read a mystical book that lets loose evil magic that feeds off their imagination. In order to stop the book, they start reviewing the book, talking about its premise and using big words. In essence, they are shutting off their imagination so they can trap the magic back inside the book.

Ironic, isn’t it?

For those who are curious, the episode is called Books.

 

Fairy Tale Collection Writing Contest and Cover Reveal

Do you love fairy tales? Ever wanted to try your hand at writing one? Here is a great opportunity to get creative and come up with your own retelling of the Beauty and the Beast fairy tale.

Rooglewood Press is holding their second fairy tale novella collection contest and I am happy to be part of their cover reveal:

Five Enchanted Roses

Rooglewood Press is delighted to introduce their second fairy tale novella contest—

Five Enchanted Roses

a collection of “Beauty and the Beast” stories

The challenge is to write a retelling of the beloved fairy tale in any genre or setting you like. Make certain your story is recognizably “Beauty and the Beast,” but have fun with it as well. Make it yours!

Rooglewood Press will be selecting five winners to be published in the Five Enchanted Roses collection, which will be packaged up with the gorgeous cover you see displayed here. Perhaps your name will be one of the five displayed on this cover?

All the contest rules and information (how to enter, story details, deadline etc.) may be found on the Rooglewood Press website. Just click HERE and you will go right to the page.

Rooglewood Press’s first collection, Five Glass Slippers, is available for pre-order now and will be released on June 14. Do grab yourself a copy and see what these talented writers have done with the timeless “Cinderella” tale!

 

Cover Illustration Credit:

This cover illustration was rendered by Julia Popova, “ForestGirl.” You can find out more about this gifted artist on her website: www.forestgirl.ru

Blog Hop: The Seahorse Legacy

The Seahorse Legacy

Hi everyone! Today I have the pleasure of participating in The Seahorse Legacy blog hop. The Seahorse Legacy is the third book in the Eyes of E’veria series, but it is the first book in a mini series within the series.

Let me say this: I really enjoyed this book. It is a pirate fantasy with a young lady knight thrown in. Curious? Just read my review below and don’t forget to enter both raffles for a chance to win books and pirate prizes!

Review:

The Seahorse LegacyCazien is the captain of the Seahorse Pirates and holder of his family’s Legacy, a legacy that gives him special abilities linked to the sea and binds him to a secret oath, one that chose his bride for him hundreds of years before he was born. Of course, being a pirate, he doesn’t like to be told what to do, or in this case, who to marry.

Eirelle is the first woman to ever be knighted in Everia, an honor she has desired ever since she was a child. But little does she know her allegiance is owed to another country, one bound by marriage: her marriage.

Everything is at stake for Cazien. He must woo and wed Eirelle (or just grab her and run) in order to fulfill his family’s oath. If he doesn’t wed her, not only will he lose his abilities through the seahorse legacy, the people of his island country will be captured and all of Everia will be at risk.

But how do you get a pirate to do what he doesn’t want to do?

I loved The Seahorse Legacy. I also loved Serena’s first two books (check out my reviews here: The Ryn and The Remedy), but I have to say I liked this one a little more. What can I say? I’m more of a pirate lover than a knight lover :). Both Cazien and Erielle are mixed characters: good, but flawed. And I liked that.

I also loved the connection Cazien has with the sea. As a sea-loving woman, I would love to have his abilities, or to even sail on his ship.

This is the first book in a two book series, so it does end without everything resolved. But that only makes me want the next book now!

***

Here are the links to The Seahorse Legacy:

Amazon

Goodreads

And don’t forget to enter both raffles for a chance to win The Seahorse Legacy and other prizes!

Rafflecopter giveaway
Rafflecopter giveaway

A Time to Die Cover Reveal

What if you only had one year left to live? How would you spend it? That is the question behind Nadine Brandes’ debut novel A Time to Die. I don’t know about you guys, but that’s a great premise for what looks to be a great book! So without further ado, here is the cover…

A Time to Die

How would you live if you knew the day you’d die?



Parvin Blackwater believes she has wasted her life. At only seventeen, she has one year left according to the Clock by her bedside. In a last-ditch effort to make a difference, she tries to rescue Radicals from the government’s crooked justice system. But when the authorities find out about her illegal activity, they cast her through the Wall — her people’s death sentence. What she finds on the other side about the world, about eternity, and about herself changes Parvin forever and might just save her people. But her clock is running out.

***

Nadine BrandesAbout the Author: Nadine Brandes is an adventurer, fusing authentic faith with bold imagination. She writes stories about brave living, finding purpose, and other worlds soaked in imagination. Her debut dystopian novel, A Time to Die, releases Fall 2014 from Marcher Lord Press. When Nadine’s not taste-testing a new chai or editing fantasy novels, she is out pursuing adventures. She currently lives in Idaho with her husband.

Where to find Nadine online:

Website: http://nadinebrandes.com

Facebook: http://facebook.com/nadinebrandesauthor

Goodreads: http://goodreads.com/nadinebrandes

Twitter: http://twitter/nadinebrandes

 

And don’t forget to add A Time to Die to your Goodreads tbr list! https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21795840-a-time-to-die