The fantasy world that has been created in The Spirit Breather is intense and wonderful. I loved the Native American aspects that are so perfectly placed in the story. They complimented the overall plot and gave the world a base for the reader to understand the story through.
How I Felt:
This book was so much fun! I felt completely drawn into the story from page 1. The first moments are filled with action and character development, I felt immersed immediately!
The characters are built to make you want to connect with them. Joseph seems dark and broody, but you also want to get to know him. He can easily be a character you end up with a crush on. Emily is just this wonderful girl with a determination and fire that was intriguing and made me like her so much.
The bad guys were the Raven Mockers. They are these terrible shape-shifting creatures that get their energy and sustain life through human souls. From the first action scene in the book, the reader gets a terrifying view of how these creatures shift and what they are capable of. Hats off to Bekah Harris’ descriptive abilities here too. I could visualize every change in their body as they morphed from human to bird. I’m still shivering a bit as I write this. These powerful storytelling skills continue throughout the entire book!
The adventure and excitement in Legends of Lost Causes Series was perfect for middle-grade readers! I loved the mixture of old west location and fantasy creatures. It created an excellent story that a young reader would love!
Legends of the Lost Causes by Brad McLelland and Louis Sylvester
How I Felt:
Legends of the Lost Causes features Keech and Sam, two orphans living in the wild west. The time frame and bad-guys for this book make it extremely unique. Set in the 1850s, it has that old feel, yet there are zombie-ish outlaws and magic. The two together created this amazing adventure that I’m sure little readers will love.
I love a good time travel book and that is exactly what I got with Hannah Goodheart and the Guardian of Time! I enjoyed how they traveled through time and how the time travel worked. It was all lovely!
The world Ernest Cline has created is one that completely envelopes the reader and takes them into the story and into the game. I loved this world. I do play video games. I remember the Atari I couldn’t wait to turn on when I visited my aunt and uncle, and when I got my Nintendo, I was SO excited. So, even though I don’t play much anymore, it was so much fun to delve into this crazy virtual reality world that Cline built.
How I Felt:
I listened to Ready Player One and while I am sure that reading this book will elicit the same exciting response I had to this story, I would like to highly recommend the audio edition. The narrator was wonderful. If you do not like to pay for audio, I found it through Libby at my library!
Cynetic Wolf was such a fast-paced story! It felt like from page one, I was immersed in this world and in the middle of the story. If you are looking for something that immediately grabs your attention and doesn’t let go, this is the book!
How I Felt:
First of all, can we just talk about this fabulous cover? I love all of the elements of the story that are built into this artwork! It’s seriously a cover that I keep looking at again and again because it is filled with amazing things to see!
The first person perspective in The Ben Braver Series was so fun and it is perfect for a middle-grade reader! I really enjoyed the way Ben addresses the reader. I found him to tell the story with some humor which made the books extremely enjoyable!
The weaving of so many wonderful topics to discuss with a child made this book an utter delight! There are so many strong messages about our world, our resources, and our actions. I cannot wait for my son to read it so we can discuss it together!
I LOVED this book. Every single word, every page, every character. Can I also just throw in my massive cover-love for this one! It was a wonderful, exciting ride filled with a witch’s curse, a romance that spans lifetimes, secrets, and so much more!
The Going Back Portaltakes no time to jump right into the story and I loved that!! It was so fun to have the book get right down to the story and it made me invest in it so quickly.
How I Felt:
The Writing: Connie Lacy has managed to weave a time-travel story together so well! She has woven together the story of two women in two different time periods with elegant story telling. It was beautiful to read.
The Characters: Kathryn Spears is the main character in The Going Back Portal and she is a bit reckless at times, but overall, a strong MC. As a headstrong, independent news producer, she jumps right into situations that lead to some nerve-wracking times.
The Plot: Kathryn goes to visit her grandmother and is transported back in time where her decisions and actions will change her future. In the past, Kathryn meets a Cherokee woman in an abusive relationship. The two work together to right wrongs, both falling in love in their own times, and trying to avoid choices that will damage their futures.
The plot was interesting and well written. I was captivated by the story and even found humor in some scenes, lightening the mood a bit. I loved the balance of the story in the 1840’s and present day. It was a great mix and blended together well.
Content Warning: Domestic violence.
To Read or Not To Read:
I would recommend The Going Back Portal for readers that are looking for a time-travel story with some historical aspects and a bit of romance.
Where to Find This Book:
The Going Back Portal by Connie Lacy is available at these sites.
Kathryn Spears is a skeptical producer for a TV investigative news team. So when her grandmother claims a Cherokee Indian woman is living on a neighboring farm, she dismisses it as early Alzheimer’s. Because, obviously, there is no farm nearby. Not in the present anyway. But when she follows Nana’s lead, Kathryn is transported back in time to the year 1840 where she finds a young Cherokee woman left behind when her family marched west on the Trail of Tears.
Forest Water is ensnared in a perilous struggle to keep her ancestral lands against a violent white man who claims the farm, and then claims her as well. Desperate to help her new friend, Kathryn becomes entangled in a battle between good and evil with much higher stakes than she imagines.
Each of these young women falls in love with a man from her own time, but there are threats, both seen and unseen, that could cost them their lives.
Just the Facts:
The Going Back Portal by Connie Lacy
Genre: Science-Fiction / Fantasy / Romance
Page Count: 326 pages
Publisher: Wild Falls Publishing
Pub Date: February 12, 2019
A huge thank you to Lola’s Blog Tours for the opportunity to read and review this book. You can find out more about Lola’s Blog Tours here!
I was provided an advanced readers copy of this book for free. I am leaving my honest, unbiased review voluntarily.
The details in this book were so much fun! I loved the caves, reefs, and ship. There are amazing and dangerous fish. It was all so detailed and really made for a beautiful picture. I would have loved to have more of this added to the book. I felt that the second half of the book had less of this in it and it was one of my favorite things.
How I Felt:
This book is a retelling of The Count of Monte Cristo, which I found interesting as that is a book I have not read yet. There is mystery and murder and adventure. The main premise is revenge that is filled with difficult choices.
The Characters represent a wide variety of our melting-pot society and I was so happy to see it. LGBTQ is well-represented here as well as people of color.
The Writing was good. It felt rushed at times and I would have liked the story to slow down just a bit so we could enjoy the moment. I appreciated Tara Sim’s descriptive writing that helped to build the story out. I hope to see more of that in book two as I really helps the reader to understand this story.
Overall, this was a fun book filled with adventure and I look forward to the second story!
This book references to child slavery and abuse, sexual assault, mention of suicide, cannibalism, parental death, child death, descriptive gore and bodily harm, and kid-napping.
To Read or Not To Read:
Readers that enjoy high-action and adventure in their fantasy books will enjoy this one!
Revenge. It was a simple word when spoken out loud, but it was so much bigger, like the hidden city under the atoll. It was a word of fire and blood, of a knife’s whisper and the priming of a pistol.
It was a word that consumed her, filled her entire being until she knew that she could no longer be Silverfish. Silverfish’s will was to survive, to simply make it to the next day, and hopefully the day after that. But that was no longer her will.
Now it was revenge.
Captain Zharo. Kamon Mercado. Moray.
They would all pay.
When Amaya rescues a mysterious stranger from drowning, she fears her rash actions have earned her a longer sentence on the debtor ship where she’s been held captive for years. Instead, the man she saved offers her unimaginable riches and a new identity, setting Amaya on a perilous course through the coastal city-state of Moray, where old-world opulence and desperate gamblers collide.
Amaya wants one thing: revenge against the man who ruined her family and stole the life she once had. But the more entangled she becomes in this game of deception—and as her path intertwines with the son of the man she’s plotting to bring down—the more she uncovers about the truth of her past. And the more she realizes she must trust no one…
Packed with high-stakes adventure, romance, and dueling identities, this gender-swapped retelling of The Count of Monte Cristo is the first novel in an epic YA fantasy duology, perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas, Sabaa Tahir, and Leigh Bardugo.
Scavenge the Stars by Tara Sim
Series: Scavenge the Stars book 1
Page Count: 336 pages
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Pub Date: January 7, 2020
Tara Sim is the author of SCAVENGE THE STARS (Disney-Hyperion) and the TIMEKEEPER trilogy (Sky Pony Press) and writer of all things magic. She can often be found in the wilds of the Bay Area, California.
When she’s not writing about mischievous boys in clock towers, Tara spends her time drinking tea, wrangling cats, and occasionally singing opera. Despite her bio-luminescent skin, she is half-Indian and eats way too many samosas.
Tara is represented by Victoria Marini at Irene Goodman Literary Agency.
Enter the giveaway using the below link. Three winners will receive a finished copy of Scavenge the Stars by Tara Sim. Open to US residents only.